Cameron slams the Observer

ARE The Observer’s SMS readers and contributors illiterate?

One Gladstone regional councillor seems to think so.

Cr Clyde Cameron read out a prepared speech during the general business component of Tuesday’s council meeting.

He lashed out at SMSs in newspapers, referring to them as “diametric non-equivalent of the face-to-face debate” and being the “domain of the gutless and seemingly illiterate”.

He raved on about the role of councillors and how those have changed, before spiralling into a rant about SMSs.

“This is a time when people are beginning to seriously question the rates threshold that people can bear,” Cr Cameron said.

“Locally, at a time when we are on the track of choosing a new mayor and possibly a councillor, most ratepayers are not even aware of the ‘evolution’ of the ‘councillor job’.

“The bureaucratically-inspired evolution that takes the councillor’s role from an inclusive, informed, everyday community member with a real responsibility in decision-making, to a member of a faceless advisory board.

“A council of dedicated people desperately trying to stand against a regime being thrust upon them from above by government and bureaucrats.

“Why should they have to put up with this SMS crap as well?

“This is often inaccurate childish attempt at profile-building by someone without the guts to sign their own name, who gets their jollies by seeing their pseudonym and rantings in print.

“Of course it’s popular. Pornography is popular, Ice is popular, glassing is popular, and that doesn’t make it right.

“And why has it evolved? Because journos have been effectively coerced by their corporate giant masters to do whatever it takes to sell papers.

“I do claim that SMSs are a blight on good democratic process.

“The public hate ‘politics’ in local government, and a thinking person may concede with impending elections, unsigned SMSs could be used in a covert way to achieve some sort of ‘political goal’ or personal ambition.”

Cr Cameron claimed the same SMSs were appearing every day in the same location of the column.

Acting mayor Gail Sellers said she personally didn’t read the SMSs in the newspaper.

“It doesn’t worry us because most of us don’t read it,” she said.

“But it does worry my parents.”

Cr Cameron said his views were his own, not of other councillors, but felt it was time council “devote whatever internal or external resources are needed to combat this form of daily dribble in the press”.

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