All posts by Noel Turnbull

The PR industry is always there

Whether it’s a war, sports, politics or the launch of a new soft drink the PR industry is always there.

It’s sometime invisible – indeed one of the fundamental rules of effective PR is that you should never actually see it – it should shape things without anyone seeing how it’s done.

But this is increasingly difficult to achieve in a society so drenched with propaganda and PR that the tactics have become an issue in their own right. read more

The opiate of the masses?

If anyone wanted to test the validity of Marx’s comment about religion being the opiate of the masses they would undertake a systematic global survey to ascertain how lower socioeconomic status (SES) harms or protects psychological well-being.

Now seven academic teams from universities in Germany, Denmark, Korea, Switzerland, the UK, USA and Australia have done exactly that in a paper published in PNAS last year. read more

Morrison’s alleged marketing skills are deserting him

Morrison may be making a fundamental marketing mistake in his current frenetic pursuit of photo ops.

It was extremely effective in 2019 when he was relatively unknown – that is while he was known to be the new Prime Minister – but his background, personality and interests were not

So, pursuing a tactic of presenting as regular bloke doing regular things was both sensible and effective – particular when opposed to Bill Shorten who was easy to portray as an apparatchik skilled in political scheming. read more

What’s odd about this?

9News has had on the Telstra Media site, on which it is featured, a link to a story about the Governor-General’s message to veterans – “you did as your nation asked ” – since August 2021.

Sometimes the item is the first you see in the Top Stories section and sometimes it slips down but whichever it’s always there among the Top Stories – which must make it the longest-running reference to an event or comment yet featured on the site. read more

No such thing as bad publicity?

In the late 16th and early 17th Century there were, among many writers, two exceptionally great English poets and playwrights – Shakespeare and Jonson. But who is best remembered by the general public today?

One retired quietly to the country and didn’t do much about having his work published. The other fastidiously ushered his work into print, sometimes carefully edited it to delete controversial phrases and ideas and promoted himself relentlessly. read more

What teaching Christian heritage could teach Australia’s students

Australian students are now going to be force fed our Western and Christian heritage and be told that the Anzac legend will no longer be ‘contested’.

Putting aside our ‘Western’ heritage – even given that Asian people trading with Indigenous inhabitants  have played a role in our history since before Cook arrived and common  enough to later amaze Mathew Flinders when he found many Makassan ships around what is now the Northern Territory – the Christian heritage if taught comprehensively will at least make the subject more popular than a teenage slasher movie. read more

Media ignores Australia’s plummeting corruption index score

You won’t read about it in the Australian media other than The Conversation. The story is missing from The Age and SMH and a Google search reveals no coverage in any mainstream Australian media.

What is it that gets so ignored? Just the news that Transparency International (TI)’s 2021 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) has put Australia in 18th place – the worst result Australia has ever received since TI’s new methodology in 2012. read more

No War without Parliament seeks veteran support

Australia Prime Ministers are quick to take us to war and even quicker to commemorate those wars. They are not so quick to provide meaningful debate in Parliament about those decisions.

The Australian War Powers Reform campaign, No War Without Parliament, is now seeking to ensure the voices of some of those Australians most heavily affected by decisions for overseas wars – ADF veterans and their families – are heard. read more