OZ RACING’S TWEETERS: AN EMBARRASSING RABBLE.
If nothing else, Twitter has revealed just how embarrassing a rabble Australian racing’s tweeters are. And, at the same time, how this new-found expression of social media free speech consumes the lives and, importantly, the productive working hours of bogan-like wannabes and never-ever will-be’s in Australian racing.
In Australian racing, the twittersphere is being used less and less for the intelligent and informed articulation of ideas and arguments- and more and more for what resembles an incoherent and illiterate dialogue between many of the bottom feeders in Australian racing, punctuated by the blatant and provocative manipulation by front men and women driven by some of the bigger fish in Australian racing.
Twitter provides the perfect medium for many of the irrelevant bottom feeders in Australian racing to stroke their egos and crave the self- importance and relevance which they mistakenly believe it provides them with- and which clearly they don’t deserve.
There are countless instances of the most puerile and infantile exchanges which do absolutely nothing to promote or advance the cause of racing.
And God and his fellow deities know how desperate racing is for an intelligent and bi-partisan debate and discussion about the life threatening issues in an industry that is being blatantly left languishing behind every other sport and entertainment medium in just about every single area that you can apply a measuring stick to.
Racing’s relevance is so close to past tense it is frightening. And yet, the bottom feeders and their media hack commentators spend their waking hours engaging in the most pointless and irrelevant discussions scoring points off each other and, unmercifully, thrashing the brand and image of what was an industry that had some semblance of self respect and self esteem.
There is neither logic nor substance to their tweets, which, overwhelmingly, are either devoid of facts or resemble exchanges between jilted or jealous lovers or partners on a fast track to exact revenge from each other.
While its competitors use social media and twitter so effectively to talk up their sports and the entertainment value and fun that they offer as an alternative, Australian racing continues to do the opposite.
It wins the gold, silver, bronze- and wooden spoon- for giving racing and non-racing people alike, a truckload of reasons to not be part of racing.
“TOFFEE TONGUE” STICKS TO MAKING A FOOL OF HIMSELF –AGAIN.
You’ve gotta hand it to Peter “Toffee Tongue” McGauran. He has turned making a fool of one’s self into an art form, and which he has managed to do, once again, with his very latest public comments on the issue of superannuation for jockeys.
The kindest thing that can be said about “Toffee” is that he epitomizes the description of a “tosser”. Sadly, for his own good, “Toffee” is still operating in the delusional world of Federal Politics in Canberra, where the “D” grade theatre and spectre of that declining institution that is called Parliament- and those that are inmates of this particular “zoo”- still believe in their own relevance and of the institution itself.
Politicians, like one particular Australian Racing Chief Executive, relish and live for an old fashioned “scrap”.
They are happiest when in combat mode and are unshaken in their belief that the only way to resolve any issue or dispute is by taking up arms and going to war.
They invent their own mythical “weapons of mass destruction” and plant them in carefully chosen and very selective places in the racing industry to give them their very own “raison d’etre” to declare war.
For those who don’t know, the jockeys, through their national association, sought a ruling from the Australian Taxation Office on their superannuation entitlements, which are extended to every Australian in the workforce with different responsibilities for payments to superannuation schemes, according to the employment and taxation and legislative status of the superannuation contributor.
The initial ruling from the Taxation Office- and only an initial ruling- deemed that jockeys were entitled to superannuation.
However, what, apparently, has got up “Toffee’s” skirt is the real possibility that when the Taxation Office releases its definitive judgment on the matter, it may rule that jockeys have been entitled to superannuation payments backdated to few years. Uh oh.
In typical parliamentary name calling question time style, with a sniff of the “R” word – retrospectivity, “Toffee” went into Mr Bean-type overdrive letting fly with some choice examples of why there really is no place for him in Australian racing, let alone being Chief Executive of the Australian Racing Board – the nominal national governing body for Australian racing.
Using such inflammatory terms as “cowardly”, and threatening legal action if the Jockeys Association pursued legal action, “Toffee” must have felt he was still in Canberra with his fellow parliamentary inmates.
“We will die in a ditch over any retrospective payments”, thundered “Toffee” in the Herald Sun.
But the Jockeys Association clearly outsmarted the old political hack. Their Chairman- Ross Inglis, below, quoted in Fairfax media telling a radio interview that “We (the Jockeys Association) have never asked for retrospectivity, we’ve simply asked the question of the Tax Office as to what our members are entitled to, and we’re still waiting on a decision from them. If the Tax Office deems that they have always had those claims, they will advise us as to suitable and relevant retrospectivity. We don’t determine that and we certainly have not demanded it. If the ARB wants to fight any decision of the Tax Office in court, it will be fighting the tax office not the Jockeys Association, and it will be spending industry dollars to do so. Surely the sensible thing to do in this case is to work together for an agreement that is accepted by both parties and then take it to the Tax office. I wouldn’t have thought that labelling jockeys as cowards would have been helpful”.
Whack, whack, whack – a comprehensive victory to the Jockeys Association and its Chairman.
While “Toffs”, who according to the Fairfax report, has been marshalling his rhetoric for a war with the Jockeys Association while bunkered in snow bound downtown New York, the image of Australian racing is again attracting pointless and unnecessary headlines for all the wrong reasons.
With such inflammatory language from a person in such an exalted position in Australian racing, what hope has it got?
“Toffee” and those other pompous ass racing administrators belong to a racing era that is completely out of touch with today’s society and is happily playing with the fairies in la la land.
Society has long moved on from being lectured and hectored to by pompous, arrogant, bully boy, vindictive, political and patronizing individuals. Have we missed anything?
Sports which understand their markets and the aspirations and needs of both their supporters and potential fans have successfully stolen a march on racing.
Australian cricket is a shining example. The Big Bash league has been an unqualified success.
Attendances have risen exponentially, merchandise is sold out, sponsors are on the waiting list, cricketing heroes have made a comeback and, in many instances, wired for sound to provide a very entertaining and informative dialogue with recently retired icons of the game in the commentary box, there is a huge buzz about the product which has been very astutely marketed by Cricket Australia.
The key difference is the resurgence of cricket and, specifically, the Big Bash League, has been based on marketing it as a intensely competitive- but critically- as a FUN sport. And it works. It makes racing look like it is still trapped in it’s own time warp from which it has no escape.
Racing just does not get it and never will whilst the current crop of racing administrators, who are way past their shelf life and use by dates, are driven by conflict and petty, pointless and often expensive litigation, which is anathema to the generation that racing needs to be of some relevance to.
Australian racing has a unique way of giving people compelling reasons to stay from it in droves. And these days, it is about the only thing that it does successfully.