Kohler the younger: a national case study

There was a time when Chris Kohler was the hot young talent of Australian business journalism. He pioneered a business blog at The Australian in MB’s image and raged against the machine on behalf of his marginalised generation:

In due course, our Chris was poached by Domain, the only other journalistic outfit available. I wondered what happened to him.

On the weekend I found out. Visiting the local GP (worry not, it’s nothing serious) I waited in a reception area dominated by an enormous flat screen TV. There, beaming into the dead eyes of the moaning invalids, was none other than Chris Kohler, flanked by a nameless and pneumatic property coquette, in a new program called Your Domain.

How did this happen to the bright young thing of Australian business journalism? Why are there not more options for the expression of journalistic talent?

The same way that it happened to others before him. To Daryl Kerrigan and his Castle recruited for Hot Auctions. To the rock ‘n’roll rebels of the 70s turned lifestyle gurus.

To your entire economy, not to mention country. At some point, we all just stopped caring.

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  1. Bit harsh. Everyone needs a gig to pay for their utilities, phone, air travel, restaurant meals, new cars, etc.
    You’ve got this; he’s got that.

    • So, UBI would improve the quality of journalism and society in general.

      Michael West could write articles on a full time basis instead of having to work as a lecturer and pass foreign “students” who cheat on exams.

    • Peachy
      You must be just a kid! I’d guess it is more like four decades – perhaps five. I guess earlier on, even going back to the early 60’s, it was just a gradual process where if an issue looked like it might get in the way then it got ignored. The growth in the ‘It’s all for me and I don’t give a pluck” has, like most things of its kind, grown exponentially so the last decade has been something of a crescendo. The process was started a long long time ago.
      The answers lie back in time.

  2. Even StevenMEMBER

    I still give a fvck. But I acknowledge many no longer do. Most just don’t know any different.

    • “Most just don’t know any different”
      That’s a fact. The truth of this country has been hidden for so long. To admit to any problems would have required subsequent action to fix them. The solutions would have meant electoral death. It was better to pretend everything is good so they could get off with their plush jobs chasing military contracts.
      The much maligned Boomers (of my age) actually think they are a virtuous lot whereas they are actually a bunch of parasites who grew fat on the productive sectors of this economy and destroyed them in the process. They don’t know any different. Nobody talked about it. As long as the debt train kept getting faster to fund ever increasing demands for better lifestyle then it was all good. Nobody was going to say any different. Conspiracy? I dunno! There is one I reckon. The only question is whether it is an accidental conspiracy or deliberate.

  3. Stewie GriffinMEMBER

    “At a certain point everybody just stopped giving a phuck.”

    Nobody gives a phuck about an economic zone, which is what the Economic Zone Formally Known as Australia EZFKA amounts to.

    We’re here now for exactly the same reason as the hundreds of thousands of migrants coming to EZFKA are – to rip as much out of the zone for our own personal consumption/wealth as possible.

    As for building a better future? Blah ha ha ha hah…. that is so patriarchal and 1950s Aust with all its hideous ‘whiteness’

    #CultureMatters and thanks to Multiculturalism and Diversity the only unifying culture the EZFKA is making money.

    You got the secular, multicultural society you yearned for – pity it resulted in stripping all meaning from our society and nation in the process.

    This is who we are now.

  4. I’ve seen this happen many times before.
    Find the talent that rages against your team, begin the slow courtship, appeal to their weaknesses, get them in a shed load of debt to fix the golden handcuffs.. then you have them. Ultimately, look for perceived mistakes they make, then fire them, to “teach them a lesson.”
    It was always going to end that way.
    There will continue to be others, I kinda feel sorry for them.

  5. I think you’re making the mistake of believing he gave a stuff in the first instance. Those early videos were just for the showreel, they would have quickly fizzled if he’d taken the alternative position.

  6. Dont worry the AFR reckons property has found a permanently high platue and will now simply rise with wages!! Problems solved.

      • Strewth Burb! I gave up years ago when these idiots started lowering IR’s in earnest. Based on my record, the whole property industry should have crashed and then gone into further into permanent decline. Plateau my foot. I’m now waiting for the Fiat rocket to really get it going upwards in its rightful and virtuous growth.

  7. ‘At a certain point everybody just stopped giving a fuck.’

    I think for me it got to a point where I realised no-one else gave a fuck, on reflection they probably never really did.

  8. The Horrible Scott Morrison MP

    I like the young lad. He’s clearly a lifter who’s enjoying and sharing the great Australian dream. There’s a lot of jealousy on this site.

  9. It’s called earning a living. As good as it may be for society no one is going to pay you offering an ongoing societal critique. There is no one tending the light at the end of the tunnel. It used to sell papers when BBs were young and spunky. Now the voting majority does not want anybody to rock the boat and risk the towers of assets they hold. Rising affluence requires keeping your mouth shut at the right times. 18 mths needs to be extended until the next BB-like demographic bulge hits adulthood. Maybe then Kohler Jnr might be employed as the nazarene you want him to be.

  10. Give the young guy a break. His pop has probably been slow to pass on some of his wealth to him and he wants his own nice pad, and perhaps even a relationship. Journo jobs are harder to get and keep these days so he is doing the best with what he has and is Working for the Man. If he joined the public service he would have to compromise most of his values and follow the party line. Perhaps he should have done a trade then he would have been fine. But he did not want to get dirt on his hands and chose his father’s profession which is not what it used to be.

    Young Kohler is just a working whhorre like most of us, except in my case I gave up whhorring when I took a redundancy years. Now I am a free man at last and can say what I want, but there are not many people around to listen or care what I say.

    If we want social improvement then we need to address the economic structure we face – in particular having a more diverse economy, high education standards and is in tune with our society (rather than a make believe world), a far more diverse press (he who pays the piper calls the tune) which may mean some redistribution of ad revenue away from Google/Facebook etc, far greater local ownership of income producing assets (ie we own most of the farm), and an end to the financialisation of the economy.

    • darklydrawlMEMBER

      “If we want social improvement then we need to address…” I would suggest you are correct, but *sigh*… when I look around me, Australia seems to be actively doing the opposite on all of those metrics. :-/