LAST CONFLICT OF INTEREST STANDINGTouche.
It may not be rating very well, but Seven's new Australian drama Last Man Standing is causing aggro anyway. Last week, right-wing blogger Ari Sharp pointed out that an Age profile of the show's writer, Marieke Hardy, failed to disclose that she appears in subscriber ads for the paper. "Surely something like this - that Hardy has a commercial relationship with the newspaper - was worthy of a mention at the end of the profile," Sharp wrote. But The Age isn't on its lonesome when it comes to being conflicted over Last Man Standing. Also last week, the Herald Sun's Sally Morrell wrote an opinion piece attacking the show's "gratuitous" nudity (or something - Morrell's argument lacks clarity). Morrell didn't tell readers she's married to fellow Hun pundit Andrew Bolt, who had a ding-dong battle with Hardy in November last year over Hardy's attack on a Young Liberal (Bolt ended up using his column to say Hardy is "unwittingly helping to push us into the abyss of despair".) Morrell didn't reply to an emailed request for comment by deadline. (Apparently, it's impossible to write about LMS without some sort of conflict of interest. Here's this column's: the writer provided some unpaid advice to an act whose music the show's producers want to use in an upcoming episode.)
Generally a fair comment, although I don't know how I qualify as a right-winger. Though I started off as a lefty a few years back, since leaving the near-extinct Democrats in 2003 I've been sitting firmly on the left-right fence, with the pickets occasionally doing damage to my sensitive regions. On economic and foreign policy, I'm on the right with the free marketeers and the less nutty neo-cons. On social policy, I'm lining up with the vegetarian gay whales in defending their right to euthenise their IVF babies in privacy.