- Oct 2019
Labor councillors are suspicious about Mr Booth's pageant. In 2014, then councillor George Simon - now assistant general secretary of NSW Labor - called for the "archaic" event to be killed off.
This is a great example of the risks involved in using background paragraphs from incomplete coverage. George Simon will no doubt be over the moon that you've given him a plug, along with his courageous but failed efforts to kill off the event.
It's likely you found your re-used paragraph in the story previewing George Simon's courageous failure. Unfortunately, The Hasbeen was MIA when the motion was shot down in flames.
But your competitor - and also TWT competitor - News Ltd's (NDT) report on failed attempt to ban Queen Questl was there at the meeting in which the motion suffered a humiliating defeat.
Even a niche womens issues publication, Womens Agenda, noted George Simon was branded a wanker for his bungled efforts..
Nevermind, you're not expected to get everything right as a work experience student, but you'll be relieved to know someone in the former Fairfax - now Nine - publishing empire did.
Watch and learn how the pros like Peter Munro do it. In his 'Six Degrees' column he mentioned Simon was chastised for his fruitless cruisade by Yellow Wiggle Emma Watkins.
That was a report, of course, before Simon ended up with egg on his face, as was the earlier one selectively regurgitated.
But surely you could have also regurgitated these John Booth pearlers from the same story:
Mr Booth said contestants were judged on responses to questions about local knowledge, ambition and involvement in the community: "Beauty doesn't come into it - but we don't penalise them for being beautiful either.
"They're trying to make it out as disparaging to women but it's politically correct rubbish. There's no swimsuit competition and most judges are women," Mr Booth said. "Two women's libbers [councillors] tried to [cut support for the contest] a few years ago but they got voted down 10-2."
And on Simon's spectacular failure - one of many:
"That nitwit?" Mr Booth said. "I'm thinking about mocking him up in a dress and Orphan Annie wig in our next edition. I haven't decided yet".
The following year he was cleared of giving false evidence to an Independent Commission Against Corruption inquiry.
This one's a double edged sword. You may think it's a no brainer to achieve a bit of smear, but by including it, you reveal that you're not aware of the shambolic inquiry it was attached to or the matters of public importance the SMH had failed to report when it all took place.