Reflection on Leadership: Jacinda Ardern

04/04/2019

In the aftermath of the Christchurch terror attack (the perpetrator of which is now charged with 50 counts of murder and 39 counts of attempted murder), all eyes fell on the quiet, small country of New Zealand for many reasons. One of which was the strikingly brilliant approach their Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, took throughout the whole ordeal. But, really, should it have made headlines?

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Trump “News” vs Actual News

02/04/2019

There was one headline this week that had people jumping on the chuckle-and-ridicule bandwagon, and that was the ‘revelation’ that Donald Trump, imagine this, cheats at golf. And someone, granted a sportswriter I suppose, took the time to write a book about it to ‘prove’ how the man has cheated and lied religiously his whole life. Is there anyone else out there who, like me, couldn’t care less what he does when playing golf?

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Earth Hour? We Need Action, Not Fleeting Goodwill

31/03/2019

For an hour each year, to raise awareness about the need for climate action, cities and landmarks around the world opt to go dark, turning off all the lights. While it can be seen as a global act of brief solidarity, the time for raising awareness seems well behind us. This is not a long-term battle; our time to change is limited.

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One Nation, the NRA, and Al Jazeera: A Question of Public Interest Pt.2

29/03/2019

One of my university lecturers posed these questions to us regarding ethics in journalism:

Is it ever ok for the media to engage in covert activities and deception? What role does public interest play?

In Pt.1 I gave One Nation and the gun lobby no quarter, and it is in this piece that I wish to explore Al Jazeera’s role, as well as answer the above questions.

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One Nation, the NRA, and Al Jazeera: A Question of Public Interest Pt.1

29/03/2019

Whether it was from legitimate news sources, or the barrage of Betoota articles about people ‘on the sauce’, most would have heard about Al Jazeera’s How to Sell a Massacre investigation. Gun lobbyists – real and fake – politicians, secret meetings with alcohol, an undercover journalist, and conspiracy to buy election results. You would almost have to agree with One Nation’s own Steve Dickson when he said: “The is the stuff you see in James Bond magazines [sic].” But it is very real, and incredibly concerning for a number of reasons.

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Quick Quips: Out of Line

28/03/2019

David Draiman’s song Out of Line, featuring Serj Tankian, is easily my favourite song on his album Device. It doesn’t hold back on its criticism of abusive power, which remains undefined but can be applied to any autocratic or plutocratic institution. From the chorus:

“You try to justify the pain that you’ve wrought,

But you’re out of line, you’re out of line.”

It is safe to say in recent months, many have stepped out of line.

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ISIS Defeated? Calm Down the Hype Pt.2

26/03/2019

I was going to initially write this and the collusion piece (link below) as one piece, but there was enough to cover to warrant separating them, but with the linking factors being the avalanche of headlines swarming our news cycle and the contrast in “sides” taken.

Some major bombshell news has been broken this week in the international arena (no pun intended regarding Syria). The first was Mueller’s report being submitted, with the US Attorney General honing in on the fact no collusion between Trump and Russia has been proven. The second is the claim that ISIS has been defeated in Syria, with headlines heralding the fall of the terror group. Headlines are fanciful creatures, aren’t they?

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No Collusion? Calm Down the Hype Pt.1

25/03/2019

Some major bombshell news has been broken this week in the international arena (no pun intended regarding Syria). The first was Mueller’s report being submitted, with the US Attorney General honing in on the fact no collusion between Trump and Russia has been proven. The second is the claim that ISIS has been defeated in Syria, with headlines heralding the fall of the terror group. Headlines are fanciful creatures, aren’t they?

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Outfoxed: A Reflection

21/03/2019

One of my optional university units this semester is about the media, detailing how it works and its role in society. This week the topic was the media’s relationship with power structures and other institutions, like political and corporate powers. While the modules mostly focussed on Chomsky and Herman’s book Manufacturing Consent, which I actually read three years ago (and was my introduction to Chomsky), there was a link to a documentary called Outfoxed, which wasn’t necessary to watch but I ended up looking at it anyway. It is, as the name suggests, about Fox News in the US, and despite being made in 2004 is still a relevant analysis of how the “news” organisation functions.

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How to Admit Guilt in One Easy Step

19/03/2019

This must have been the title of the clickbait advertisement the Trump administration saw and decided to click on when the International Criminal Court rocked up to investigate US war crimes in Afghanistan. Because only the innocent attempt to obstruct justice, right?

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