Monday, April 17, 2006

why mX s-u-x

Yeah, right, so there are many good reasons to hate Melbourne's free daily 'commuter' newspaper, the News Limited made mX (Melbourne Express). Here's a short list:
  1. It's full of shit, trivial celebrity goss;
  2. It labels political, social news as 'boring but important' and relegates this section to less than a column;
  3. It has a section labelled 'doom and gloom' which fixates on news of death and devastation;
  4. It prioritises a section it calls 'what in the weird' that discusses quirky news events of little consequence to anyone over the section mentioned in point 1;
  5. It plagiarises from sources far and wide, including New Scientist as mentioned in Media Watch tonight;
  6. Its puzzles section contains the shittest of shit shitness when it comes to testing your brain and no funnies - what's with that?;
  7. It has what must be the worst cartoonist in Australia, Andrew Fyfe, and dares to print such trash as the following picture.
This picture came hot on the heels of Indonesian newspaper, Rakyat Merdeka, publishing a cartoon of Prime Minister John Howard and and Foreign Minister Alexander Downer as two dingoes rutting on its front page. This was followed by Bill Leak of The Australian newspaper, drawing a cartoon of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Indonesia's president screwing a dog. Now, obviously these caricatures are absurd and were duly shown little interest by these politicians. Fair enough.
But as Din mentioned, there is a clearly homophobic tone to them. At the time of his posting, I somewhat dismissed Din's emphasis on the homophobia, but now I feel a little foolish.
These kind of negative representations of homosexuality are nothing short of offensive. I fail to see how the unholy alliance of Australia and China on the basis of shared nuclear interests could in any way evoke the fraught same-sex relationship as depicted in Ang Lee's fine and sensitive film, Brokeback Mountain.
Now, it seems that Fyfe thinks the relationship depicted in BM is something rather ugly or laughable and that it is appropriate to satirise politicians by drawing them as homos as a means of criticising them, thus casting homosexuality in a negative light. I'm sure Fyfe felt he had licence to do this because some other cartoonist set the precedent. But he's merely manifesting something latent and has been supported by the editors of that rag.
What second rate hacks.
So remember kids, don't forget to ask this one important question to the next person you see reading mX:
is that the truth or is your news limited?

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