ABC Radio and Barley

I’m always surprised by the shallowness of ABC radio’s coverage of the news. They appear to not think at all. Perhaps they leave the thinking to the mouthpiece, the presenter or whatever they call the person who actually speaks the news and does the interviews.

For instance this morning I’ve heard about four different iterations of news regarding China’s impost of an 80% tariff on Australian barley.

And none of them informed me as to the possibility of storing Australian barley for perhaps some years. I don’t know if it is storable and if it is I don’t know if we have the capacity, the storage facilities.

Nor did they tell me anything about why the Chinese buy Australian barley. Because it was the cheapest? Or was it always expensive but it is a premium product?

Nor did they tell me about what ‘slap’ might be available – has it been a very profitable product? Is there room for a reduction in price by the Aussie farmer to where the final price gets down to where it may remain competitive in China?

Nor did they tell me anything about how realistic this may be in the China context. If they cannot afford Australian barley can they still work with other barleys? Are they good enough? Is enough available in the rest of the world? Or is it going to damage some industries (presumably brewing, mainly) in China?

How about some human content instead of this eternal talk of ‘china’ and ‘australia’ etc., virtual entities – what about the Chinese people? How will this effect them? Will it effect them at all and if so how?

And if it won’t effect them then how about their attitude? What do they think of their govt doing this?

All I hear – and I’m hearing it again right now – is the ‘umm’, ‘errr’ ‘presenter’ trying to foment trouble by attempting to get some support for any contention that all this is a manifestation of political enmity..

Neither, as the discussion again mentions how China is our largest market, do they call into question how that cuts both ways – if they buy most of our products then that gets to be such an enormous amount that it surely must have some effect on them?

They are not buying them for fun, are they? They are buying them because they need them so they are presumably jeopardising their own future interests if they upset us.

But I hear no thoughts along those lines – just what leverage we have with China considering our overall importance to their economy.

It is all very disappointing, again and again.

That and the time given to motor mouths. One going on right now…. Never so clear a demonstration of the old adage: those who speak don’t know, those who know don’t speak. Again and again on ABC radion motor mouths hogging the air time and telling us nothing…

Life’s like that.


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