A fellow journalist I used to work with had a nice little line he used to trot out when accused of bias.
“I don’t have an opinion - I just report other people’s” he said on more than one occasion.
Technically speaking, as a journalist I report the facts as they are. Of course this is pretty much bullshit because my own opinions and political leanings no doubt contribute to the kind of stories I choose to give more column inches too, and even who I think to contact for certain stories. But in theory I like to pretend to be neutral.
That all ends now because if a certain recently-announced mayoral candidate for the City of Perth wins the seat I might have to kill myself and then him. Probably not in that order.
I don’t loathe local government in the way that some people do and I wouldn’t like to see it done away with and replaced by a two tier system. I think there is a lot of wankery that goes on with councils and much unnecessary fricking around but I actually think they play an important role too.
This particular councillor also plays an important role: he is a tool. If he’s not eyeing up the reporters at council meetings to make sure they’re taking down each pearl of wisdom he is vomiting out then he’s turning up at the opening of the proverbial envelope and glad-handing everyone from acquaintances and fellow big wigs to the complete stranger who just held the door open for him to be nice.
Say what you want about Nattrass but I quite like him. At the very least he has a genuine wish to do the best for Perth and a decent vision for how that can be achieved. If it came down to a choice between this anonymous candidate and a cat with a bucket on its head I think the cat has more vision.