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Name: Antony Loewenstein
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Tuesday, January 03, 2006

A head-start

Back in early December, I was a runner-up in Smartyhost's best Australian blog competition. The top prize of $10,000 passed me by, but I received a reward nonetheless. Worth $120, I was given the following for one year:

- 50 megabyte hosting package
- blogging software
- domain name registration

I've long wanted to assist aspiring, young journalists in the difficult first years. Jobs in the industry are notoriously hard to find, degrees in the field often lead to PR and idealism is rarely rewarded in the corporate media.

Let me make a small contribution. I'd like to offer the above prize to an Australian citizen under the age of 25 who is keen to start his or her own website and display their writing to the world. You may be interested in domestic issues or international events. You may just need a kick-start to find your unique voice. Maybe we can find the next Robert Fisk or Seymour Hersh.

In my early days, I was assisted by many established journalists - though never financially - and this brought much-needed confidence and contacts.

So, if you're under 25 and fit the above criteria, write to me with a small example of your work before February 1 (antloew[at] and I'd love to make this humble contribution. I'll select the person I believe is the most enthusiastic, curious, gutsy and best writer.

I'll announce the winner on this blog and provide whatever assistance I can.

Good luck.

UPDATE: If any reader knows of a young, hotshot journalist in waiting, please pass this message along.


Blogger Pete said...

Dear Antony

I'm over 25 you bastard.

But Happy New Year nevertheless.


Tuesday, January 03, 2006 2:08:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

$10,000? That wouldn't even keep Webdiary going for a fortight!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 2:27:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

I'd love to offer more, but alas...
In time, I hope I can.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 2:30:00 pm  
Blogger Rich Bowden said...

Aaah's the thought that counts!

Great to see someone encouraging independence and putting something back into Australian journalism. Congratulations!

By the way, tell me when you get around to offering a prize for cranky old wannabe journos!

All the best in '06 mate!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 2:39:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Thanks Rich,
Many 'cranky old wannabe journos' probably need the money too, but alas, gotta support the up and comers, yes?
Best wishes to you for the year.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 2:43:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Sorry, not to be a cynic, but I'm not quite sure what the value of this prize is given that anyone can set up shop on blogspot essentially for free. The cost barriers for entry are virtually nil for this sort of writing/journalism.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 2:46:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

The prize includes internet usage, setting up a domain name etc. Blogger is free, true, as are many other blogging sites, but this is very different. Hosting a website, up to 50mb, ain't free.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 2:50:00 pm  
Blogger violet said...


Why not offer this as a scholarship at Mt Scopus?

Gosh, wouldn't they be proud of you now? Old boy!

You could name the scholarship: The Antony Loewenstein Betrayal Scholarship or Scholarship for the Promotion of Genocide

By the way Antony, how do you feel at school reunions?

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 3:53:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Er, I didn't go to Scopus or a Jewish school.
Not feeling threatened at all, are you, little wilting Violet?

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 4:02:00 pm  
Blogger violet said...

No Antony, I'm having more fun than I've had in a long time!!

And so nice to see you read my posts!

By the way, since I've devoted a day of my life to you and your blog, I should pass on what I have discovered.

Actually, I should give credit where it's due. Tim Blair found this one. It's called Stockholm Syndrome and the patient feels an unaccountable sympathy for abusers. Kate Burton is suffering from it -- the girl who was recently kidnapped by Palestinian terrorists. She is so overcome with empathy she can't believe her kidnappers to be anything other than misunderstood victims.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 4:26:00 pm  
Blogger David Heidelberg said...

Congratulations on discovering the Stockholm Syndrome, Violet (neoleftychick) That must make you what, 14 years old?

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 5:16:00 pm  
Blogger violet said...

I guess you have a little trouble with big words david. Tim Blair wrote about it, and I picked up the link.

Is laughing at being called leftychick, t'is quite amusing and does save me from having to expalin who I really am. So, thanks for that.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 5:38:00 pm  
Blogger violet said...


Tim Blair is promoting your scholarship !

Hey, whatta nice fella!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 5:41:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

I'll have a crack! Look, I just wrote a tops China analysis that surely qualifies me for hotshot status!

Just out of curiosity, is the internet package refundable, by any chance? No reason, just askin'.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 8:29:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Oh, and prior to that, I posted a rather funny photo of two slags shagging in the front seat of a Hyundai Excel whilst their kid was still in the back.

Surely I'm a shoo-in. All your web domain are belong to us.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 8:33:00 pm  
Blogger orang said...

Oh god...violet=neolefty=Tim Blair in drag??

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 10:11:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

"All your web domain are belong to us."

Aaaaah, the sub-culture that is the computer nerd ;)

BTW, James- I did read your post on the Chinese economy, it challenged everything I've ever been told about China. So I cried and ignored it.

Orange- no.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006 11:47:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Yeehaa, someone read it! It is quite a lengthy piece - most blog lurkers don't have much of an attention span. Anyway, don't fear - just minimise your China exposure investment-wise and get a job in the public service. If I'm right and China goes to the wall, you should have an income and your assets will still be intact!

Okay, now I'm dispensing financial advice. Give me the prize, already.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006 12:56:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

Hey James,

Happy new year mate! I look forward to reading your article sometime today.


Wednesday, January 04, 2006 2:04:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...


Just read your article. A fascinating read indeed and well argued. If your worst predictions come to light, I would be interested to see what the reaction/intervention would be from the US and EU. Surely, neither copuld allow this to happen, in fact as you say, the intrenational community in general coudl not absorb this outcome.

BTW. I foudn this interesting. Jual Cole's predictionf for 2006.

(scroll down)

I would be intersted to hear your thoughts.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006 5:25:00 am  
Blogger orang said...

Interesting Cole's prediction 4. "The Iraqi government, on which the US is placing its bet, will limp along with less than $19 billion a year in petroleum income because of sabotage and guerrilla war, along with long-neglected fields and dilapidated plants and equipment. Most of that money will be absorbed by the need for internal security, reconstruction and paying off past reparations and debts, as well as by large-scale corruption and embezzlement (billions of dollars went missing during the government of Iyad Allawi in 2004)."
With Chalabi being the Oil Minister, can't see any turn around there.
Interesting also that Bush has reduced the funding for Iraq reconstruction - I guess they don't need it, they're free already. Another job well done.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006 7:44:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

Don't you just love how elections guarantee instant democracy?

You're in good form today Orang.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006 7:59:00 am  
Blogger Human said...

That is very nice of you Anthony. The envy and jealousy exhibited by some is a compliment that lays in their lies.
btw- What site won 1st prize?


Wednesday, January 04, 2006 8:28:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

My site did, Human. The Hyundai pic clinched it.

I'm enjoying $120 worth of domain-hosting goodness as we speak.

Mmm. Peace to that.

Addamo - happy new year to you, too! Did you like the China piece? A bit long winded, I know ...

Wednesday, January 04, 2006 7:51:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...


Yes indeed I read your article. A fascinating read indeed and well argued. If your worst predictions come to light, I would be interested to see what the reaction/intervention would be from the US and EU. Surely, neither copuld allow this to happen, in fact as you say, the intrenational community in general coudl not absorb this outcome.

BTW. I foudn this interesting. Jual Cole's predictionf for 2006.

(scroll down)

I would be intersted to hear your thoughts.

Thursday, January 05, 2006 1:03:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

It would be catastrophic for both the US and the EU in the short-medium term, it's true. Problem is, what on earth could they do about it once it's happening? Once the mobs and the tanks are on the streets (which could happen very quickly), the crisis has reached a critical mass and there's not a goddamn thing an outsider can do short of occupying the country.

Also, a downturn in the American economy could very well prove the breaking point for China's economy. As I said, China is only powering along thanks to the confidence of outsiders - to a large degree American corporate investors. If the American economy hits the skids, China's will tank too, but with far greater consequences.

Thursday, January 05, 2006 4:27:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

But what about America's reliance on China for cheap product, manufacturing and borrowing? Who does America turn to fill that gap and could it sustain the holes left by China indefinitely?

Excuse my ignorance, but is there any similarity between the clouds hanging over China and what happened to Argentina not long ago? Of course her is the matter of scale, but Argentina seems to have come out of a possible disaster pretty well.

Thursday, January 05, 2006 4:37:00 am  
Blogger anthony said...

Hey, Loewenstein- when are you announcing James the winner of your prize?

Thursday, January 05, 2006 5:09:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

It will certainly be difficult. America may have to start sourcing its goods elsewhere. China isn't the only place in the world that makes cheap crap. If there are things that only China makes, prices for certain goods will rise. China's collapse will most probably also mean a fall in the value of the USD against other currencies - China will no longer be in a financial position to intervene massively in currency and bond markets to keep it artificially expensive. This will dampen consumer confidence markedly, as the cost of imported goods rises. However, it will also close the trade deficit, as American exports look more attractive to foreigners.

The difference between Argentina and China in economic crisis mode is the way the authorities in China will deal with the ensuing social upheaval. For starters, when Argentina was unravelling in 2001, it was quite obvious that the de la Rua administration was doomed. He quickly fell on his sword in the face of massive protests. The democratic process allowed the people to vent their frustrations at the ballot box soon after. In China there are no such freedoms - if the leadership senses popular discontent spiralling out of control, they will do whatever it takes to suppress it. This will be their undoing because the popular tide will be too strong, and this is what I mean when I say the political system in China is brittle. Argentina's democracy is flexible and can absorb financial upheaval.

Thursday, January 05, 2006 8:12:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Interesting analysis James.

Friday, January 06, 2006 9:24:00 am  
Blogger neoleftychick said...


I'm gutsy and have potential for fame and infamy; however I am over 25. Are you prepared to drop your vile "ageism" and extend you offer to MOI? :))

Friday, January 06, 2006 11:31:00 am  

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