Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Herald journalist gets all mixed up

Vanda Carson has been writing in The Sydney Morning Herald about Kings Cross lately. Her story in Saturday's  edition though, shows either terrible confusion or really bad sub-editing. It was a long weekend, after all.

In a story about Council’s War on Kings Cross, Vanda writes:
Residents are also mostly supportive of the plan, with the majority of Kings Cross and Oxford Street residents wanting fewer pubs or a cap on the number of liquor licences, according to a council survey.
The survey also showed 20 per cent of Oxford Street residents and 16 per cent of Kings Cross residents believed either the opening hours or the number of alcohol outlets should be restricted to curtail violence, noise, vomiting and public nuisance issues.
Excuse me, Vanda, how do figures of 16% and 20% justify the phrase "the majority of Kings Cross and Oxford Street residents wanting fewer pubs". They sound like a rather small minority to me, as I have been banging on about.

The only survey Vanda Carson could have been referring to* showed only 16 percent of residents wanted to "Restrict opening hours/alcohol outlets". That's far from a majority. Perhaps Vanda is a bit mathematically challenged and reads what she expects to believe.

Vanda also qualifies Council's recent series of losses in court by describing the victors with terms like "powerful hoteliers", as if Council's bottomless budget and corporate size does not match or exceed that of their opponents. The fact is, Council's evidence simply does not stack up, as I reported on at length in the current City News.

In a series of reports, I show from Hansard records (2 June 2010) how Clover Moore wants to shut everything down at midnight (Off to bed early, Sydney, says Clover);

And how Police and Council are ignoring other measures to improve amenity in Kings Cross (DIY Policing offer ignored).

All the above were tied up in a comment piece (My generation’s War on Nightlife puts down a new generation).

*P 32 (print) or P 38 (pdf pagination) of Late night trading - Community perceptions (June 2008, Urbis)

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