In tonight’s Federal Budget, the current Federal Government has announced an unexpected cut in funding to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation of some $84 million over the next three years. This is on top of existing cuts in funding of $254 million since 2014.
It was also announced that there would an ‘efficiency review’ (which is code for finding other means of cutting funding if the past is anything to go by) into the ABC’s operations.
One cannot help but be suspicious of the timing of these cuts in the wake of reporting from the ABC that was critical of government policy and priorities, and rather than being an opportunity for the ABC to live within its means (as the Treasurer is reported as saying) this has the distinct taste of the “But they were mean to me” scenario of a school playground.
The cut to funding for Australia’s public broadcaster is a nasty partisan political act perpetrated by a government that doesn’t seem to like facts being reported.
It is simply unacceptable.