Financial Woe Is Increasing in WA

Resulting from a fall in the iron ore price, the state is facing financial deficit—over $1.5 billion.

West Australian Premier Colin Barnett warns that further public service cuts are likely coming up responds to the Government financial crisis.

On Thursday, the Government has confirmed 1,500 job cuts in the public sector for budget saving program.

On Friday, Barnett announced that the further cuts will come in the December mid-year review, including the funding for schools. Synergy, the Water Corporation and LandCorp will have a 7.5 per cent cut in the coming years.

But the Government committed that there would be no changes in all infrastructure projects. It means that the airport link project will not have more delays that has been already two years late.

“There will be some savings across Government but the projects that are coming up now that are committed to will proceed,” Mr Barnet said.

Mr Barnett said, the government made a hard decision to respond to the budget deficit, aims at saving $2 billion over four years.

WA’s revenue has one-fifth base from iron ore royalties. According to Treasurer Mike Nahan, the current iron ore price is around 35% lower than expected for 2014-2015.

Mike Nahan said:
“Moreover, under the current flawed process for distributing GST revenue among the States and Territories, the impact of this won’t be fully recognised in Western Australia’s GST grant revenue until 2018-19.”

Mr Barnett said the public sector cuts are frustrated decisions.

Opposition Leader Mark McGowan said the financial woe in WA was caused by the overly optimistic forecast and the losing in credit rating—from AAA fall to AA+.

The Role of Investigative Journalism in the Society

Investigative journalism can be seen as watchdog in our society. The public need the deeply truth of the issue, what is hidden under the surface? Therefore, investigation is becoming more and more important.

Investigative journalism has a long history.  Since the appearance of journalism in the mid-nineteenth century, the development of democracy in the society is impressive. Especially in the American colonies and some European countries, journalism plays a significant role in the political issue in the society. (Aucoin, 2005) Originally, journalism operates investigative journalism in order to disclose the deep truth of the political process to the citizens. The main purpose of investigative journalism at that time is to promote transparency in the elite group and maintain democracy in the community. Investigative journalism, therefore, is an important part in journalism and social development. Hash (2013) The essay will examine: firstly, the emergency of investigative journalism in the history; secondly, the function of investigative journalism in modern society; thirdly, the future of investigative journalism in the digital era.

Traditional investigative journalism began with the printing. The booming of investigative journalism was from 1970s, after the famous investigative reporting—Watergate investigation that leaded to a remarkable influence on the political situation with the crackdown of US president Richard Nixon. As a result, investigative journalists are regarded as “watchdog” in the society. Investigative journalist focus on exposing the truth hidden by the powerful. Increasingly, news investigative organisation established, for example, 60 Minutes program in CBS which has a high-quality investigative reporting. (Aucoin, 2005) Indeed, investigative reporting has a long tradition of exposure and reveals the truth under the behaviour which might hurt the interest of the public, such as the corruption in the government.

In twenty century, many reforms happen in media and journalism. However, the role of investigative journalism in the society remains to provide an in-depth story which relate to what citizens concern.  An in-depth story is the fundamental of investigative reporting, and during this process, investigative journalists need to put the efforts on rooting out facts that people want to hide for their own interest but the detriment of society. The purpose of the investigation should be to uncover the “wrong behaviour.” (Roger, 2012) Moreover, as extension of investigative reporting, the issue about human rights, environmental situation and health problems which connect to ordinary people matters which recently become popular in investigative program. Meanwhile, resulting from globalization, international issues are growing up, and investigative journalists nowadays are not only interested in local stores but also in global issues. At the same time, the impact of investigative reporting trend to spread around the world. Under the large amount of source from the whole world, in this way, the obligation of investigative journalists to ensure the information accuracy is more important than before.

It is a digital age, and broad wide application technology in journalism brings both opportunity and challenge to investigative reporting. (Kaplan, 2013) The social media platform gives a chance to journalists to collect more stories from various groups in the society. Facebook, Twitter and blogs on the websites, for example, attract increasing numbers of people to get involve into this new community. Investigative journalists, therefore, prefer to use social media as a tool to build a close relationship with the ordinary people. It is beneficial for investigative journalism to produce valuable in-depth reporting. On the other hand, however, as a consequence of mass communication, investigative journalism are facing more obstacles to exposure the truth. Marsh (2012) The necessity of discovering secrets that also as the main function of investigative journalism requires journalists to verify the sources in order the ensure the accountability of the reporting.

Furthermore, because of the tendency that social media are becoming more popular among the citizens, too often, people choose to read or watch the scandals that post by citizen journalists or bloggers instead of the issues that published by professional journalism. Grieve (2008) In this way, social media, to some extent, determined the reputation of professional investigative journalism. (Kaplan, 2013) As a result, compare to the old days, the impact of investigative journalism on political policy and social reforms is decreasing. To face these challenges, investigative journalists need to maximize their specialize obligation to produce quilted story that reveal the darkness in the society that betray the public’s interest while it is different between investigative reporting and disclose celebrities’ affairs on the Internet.

With the process of digital application in modern society, the demand for high-quality investigative journalism is increasing. Parry (2005) The evolution of mass communication is both opportunity and challenge for investigative reporting. To maintain the principal and function of investigative journalism, journalists need to consider how to improve their professional skills and always keep the obligation as being responsible reporter. Pavilk (2008)

References:

Aucoin, James (2005). The Evolution of American Investigative Journalism. Columbia, Mo.: University of Missouri Press.

Kaplan, David E (2013). Global Investigative Journalism: Strategies for Support [Adobe Digital Editions]. Retrieved from: A Report to the Center for International Media Assistance.

Haines, Roger (2012). Investigative Journalism In a digital Age. Retrieved from: http://www.thebureauinvestigates.com/2012/05/02/in-search-of-the-truth-investigative-journalism-in-a-digital-age/

Grieve, Fergus (2008). Investigative Journalism: Facing A Drought? Retrieved from: http://www.reportageonline.com/2008/09/investigative-journalism-facing-a-drought/

Hash, Chris (2013). Journalism as a research discipline. Pacific Journalism Review, Vol. 19(2)

Retrieved from http://profiles.arts.monash.edu.au/chris-nash/journalism-as-research/

Marsh, David (2012). Digital Age Rewrites the Role of Journalism. Retrieved from:

http://www.theguardian.com/sustainability/sustainability-report-2012-people-nuj

Parry, Robert (2005). Why we Need Investigative Reporting. Retrieved from:

http://www.consortiumnews.com/2005/072905.html

Pavlik, John Vermon (2008). Media In the Digital Age. (pp.234-240). New York, Columbia University Press.

Yellow Journalism, so strong to survive until today

In 1985, during Spanish-American war, artist Frederic Remington telegrammed Hearst to tell him all was quiet in Cuba and “There will be no war.” Hearst responded “Please remain. You furnish the pictures and I’ll furnish the war.”  That is a famous story known as yellow journalism. After hundred years, recently, in Iraq war, news media plays a similar role in the United State. News reporting are full of voice and visual images that people in Iraq are suffering terrorism threaten while White House is represent for fighting for human-interest. The U.S.A soldiers are democratic fighter in Iraq.

So, why in my point of view, the American media behaviour can be seen as yellow journalism and what is yellow journalism? And how can it survive through such long time? 

Different from serious journalism, yellow journalism focuses on sensationalism and the over dramatizing of stories in order to increase newspaper sales (Democrats for Progress, 2008). Sensationalized and over-dramatized journalism associated with such events as crime, war, celebrities and other news of intrigue to the public. These types of stories present little legitimate and researched information using eye-catching headlines to sell more newspapers, magazines and other such forms of news (Skog, 2006). Yellow journalism has been viewed as treating news in an unprofessional or unethical way, yet there is always the other side of journalism, which says, “scandal sells“ (Compell, 2001). Yellow journalism, also known as yellow press, is most popularly used in stories dealing with war, courtroom scandals, political campaigns and celebrity scandals.

Yellow Journalism has been used in every period of history since the term was coined. Every time there is a major event in our history the press has always lent its own personal bent to the story (Bacha, Kaid & Lee, 2008). In many instances the press has published outrageous headlines with little or no sources cited for the story line. It is a technique that works with the average reader, especially today. A case in point is Murdoch’s News Corporation, which represents the modern tabloid which is known for its sensationalist headlines and yellow journalism (Kuhn, Raymond & Neveu 2002). For Murdoch, reporters are not journalists; rather they are opinionated editorialists. They do not seek the facts and are not fair in their judgments.

Hearst’s and Pulitzer’s practices of Yellow Journalism are very familiar to what we are exposed to today. It is true that those same tactics being used Rupert Murdoch, whose biography and philosophy is strikingly similar to Hearst and Pulitzer (‘Milestones in the History of U.S Foreign Relations’, n.d, Para 6). Yellow Journalism is very similar to what it was then. More and more extravagant and impulsive headlines are print out day after day. Change has not yet developed. Yellow Journalism will always be around and will always expand in each and very way.

Today, we use ‘tabloid journalism’ refers to ‘yellow journalism’. Even tough these two kinds of journalism appeared in different ages, the fact is that, they have a lot in common. Tabloid journalism involves a focus in shock and sensationalism, and often uses exaggeration in order to attract viewers or reader (Compell, 2001). In celebrity-oriented publications, tabloid reporters will even create a scandal where there may not really be. For example, there could be an implication that a certain famous person is having an affair when there is no real evidence of such a thing; tabloid reporters will often distort available facts and make things seem like a crisis (Bacha, Kaid & Lee, 2008). Moreover, the tabloid style is also used certain broadcasting show hosts to stir people up and get them outraged over issues related to politics. For instance, the television talk show uses name-calling and unproven claims that are meant to scare people. The host might say a particular candidate is a traitor or a communist, or that a particular political party is going to destroy the country if their members are elected (Democrats for Progress, 2008). In terms of printing media, magazines like Globe and the National Enquirer, for example, still employ these methods along with a host of others.The goal is to persuade potential voters to reject that candidate or political party, but rather than using facts and encouraging debate on the issues.

In 21st Century, it is an era of media sensationalism. This ranges from the social activities to the political campaign trail where journalism is filled with opinion and heavily biased news reporting (Compell, 2001). With all the competing news coverage now days, the media focuses its attention on controversial subjects and sensationalizes these stories as much as possible in order to get their story heard (Skog, 2006).

Reference

Bacha-Holtz., Kaid, Christina., & Lee, Lynda (2008). Cell division. Encyclopedia of Political Com munication(10th ed.) Retrieved from Los Angeles: Sage Publications.

Compbell, W Joseph (2001). Yellow Journalism: Puncturing the Myths, Defining the Legacies. Westport, U.S.A

Democrats for Progress (2008). Yellow Journalism, Yesterday and Today. Retrieved from: http://www.democratsforprogress.com/2011/01/11/yellow-journalism-yesterday-and-today/

Kuhn, Raymond., & Neveu, Erik (2002). Political Journalism: New Challenge, New Practices

New York: Routledge.

Milestones in the History of U.S Foreign Relations. (n.d.). Retrieved from: http://history.state.gov/milestones

The Political. (2012). Yellow Journalism of the 21st Century. Retrieved from: http://thepolitic.org/yellow-journalism-of-the-21st-century/

Skog, Jason (2006). Yellow Journalism. Retrieved from: http://www.compasspointbooks.com/

Can a Song Save Your Life? Maybe not in real-life, but seems it can in Begin Again!

Begin Again is a light-hearted musical comedy, filled with romantic moments.

In the movie, original songs win you over, and the irresistible music stays in your head and the lyrics are simply unforgettable.

The plot is set in New York City. Gretta (Keira Knightley), a songwriter with her musician boyfriend-Dave (Adam Levine of Maroon 5 and TV’s “The Voice,” who is known as playing off his public persona to the hilt), moves to New York for stardom. However, it is a turning point for both of their life and love story. Their relationship ends up with Dave cheating on her, and Gretta left alone in that big and strange city.

Dan (Mark Ruffalo), used to the record producer,  facing a big challenge in both of his career and life. Saul (Mos Def, excellent), Dan’s parent betray him while he has to leave his own company.  And then, Dan’s wife (Catherine Keener) left him.  It is not the end, the relationship between him and his daughter (Hailee Steinfeld), is crackdown. Shocking by these at the same time, Dan has reached his lowest point in his life.

 

However, this tragedy does not create a sad atmosphere at all, interestingly, Knightley and Ruffalo’s subtle performance in the movie show the darker moments of life in a hilarious way.

They meet in a bar one night in New York. She is singing while the lyrics from ‘a broken love’, match directly to Dan’s horrible situation at that moment. Gretta and her performance catch the attention of Dan. For Dan, Gretta is a potential star and he convinces her to collaborate with him. From then on, Dan and Gretta made a decision to make a demo album all on their own, and it will transform them both over an unforgettable summer.

Though Dan and Gretta have so much enthusiasm and ambition to make their music, the remnants of their real lives are not as easily as they image. They raise a fund, which comes from a rap impresario who once owned a debt to Dan in order to support his career. Dan and Gretta want make their music in a real and natural way, which has to be totally different. They are going to record everything outdoor, in the subway, in alleys, on rooftops, even though most of the artist would not do that. They do not care, and what they care is that,  “Music comes from city”, they try to allow the city to add its own music. It’s nothing but sincere green, natural, and full of genius.

But, don’t take it as a regular Hollywood movie, Dan will make Greta a star, and they will fall in love. Happy ending. Go ahead, and finish this image. Maybe it is not a perfect romantic love story ending, but it is good enough and enjoyable.

The writer-director John Carney, who directed “Once” in 2006, a superb Irish musical that went on to spawn a Tony-award winning Broadway show. Both of these two are musical movie, however, Knightley is not a real singer while two main actors in “Once” are. In this point, Begin Again cannot win Once.  Compared to Once, Begin Again makes for comedy entertainment. It is easy and relaxed.

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Begin Again, the warm story and wonderful songs that operated by  Glen Hansard and New Radicals frontman Gregg Alexander, is an amazing  experience to watch. In this “summer”, though is winter in Australia, Begin again will bring a fresh breeze to your heart.

Study hard, and enjoy it

Tonight is a special night for me because I have my own English blog finally! From tonight, I will push myself to write something about current news, share my opinions, in order to improve my writing skills. Keep writing and practicing to express my mind in a more English way.