NEWSFLASH! In September I will join The Conversation as its Business and Economy Editor. I have been honoured to work at The Age for the past ten years, originally alongside the legendry Tim Colebatch, and for the past four years as economics editor in my own right.

At The Conversation, my job will be to make the best thinking from Australia's 40 univerisites accessible to the widest possible audience. That means you. From the new year I will also write a weekly column.

On this site are most of the important things I have written for Fairfax and the ABC over the past few decades. I recommend the Search function. The site is a record for you, as well as me.

I'll continue to post great things from The Conversation and other places here, and also on Twitter and Facebook. Enjoy.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Obama. He knows how to write.

At The Atlantic James Fallows writes about this extraordinary photo of an Obama-edited speech:





"The speech in question appears to have been his address about health-care reform to a Joint Session of Congress last September, which was the beginning of his campaign to recover from the long, hot "Summer of the Death Panels." Click on the shot below for a slightly larger version; go to the White House Flickr site here  for a stupendously large original shot."





"The volume of Obama's editing is unusual but not unheard of. The quality of his editing is exceptional for a public figure. Think of just one sentence in the shot above. The original says "This has always been our history." Obama changes it to, "This has always been the history of our progress." A different, more interesting, and more original-sounding thought. As people in my business say: You know, if things had turned out differently, he could've been a writer! (Yes, yes, I know that he was..)"



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