Right-winger sometimes try to ‘catch out’ Noam Chomsky by saying ‘well, you critique the mainstream media saying it helps manufacture consent, but you at the same time rely on journalistic accounts to put together your arguments. Are you a hypocrite or what?’ (I paraphrase).
Chomsky replies that there are many hard-working and diligent journalists who are what the young people used to call ‘woke’ (I think the term is jumping the shark, fwiw). That is, journos who know how the control -via ownership, advertising, editors – works. And they know that there is sometimes a certain amount of wiggle room, if they are clever and lucky and get the timing right. They can be stainless steel rats in the wainscoting. Chomsky, from memory, points to Charles Glass as an example of this. (yep, memory not yet destroyed).
All this came to mind today while I was doing some research (yes, at the end of my third year of my PhD) at the Adelaide University Library. One of those silly coincidences that happens, I saw the name of the same journo pop up twice in two different places. Firstly, in 1982, in a newsletter of the SA Conservation Council (and these people were, well, ‘woke’).
The second was from a speech given by Don Hopgood, a former South Australian Environment Minister, published in Xanthopus, the newsletter of the Nature Conservation Society of SA (Vol 12, 6, December 1994) (A xanthopus, as well as being a fantastic scrabble word, is a yellow-footed wallaby).