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October 15, 2007 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]


This week you are holding the last Salient of 2007, where we summarise the highs and lows of the Salient year. My vision for Salient was always to increase the level of radicalism, and while I know that’s meant at times it’s been a serious read, I don’t apologise. Since 1938 Salient has been a rally force against the pillars of the university and society. If you believe that things are unfair, like student fees and exuberant flatting costs, then I think it’s the duty of the media to raise these questions.

This year I’m thankful that this vision has been shared by a team of writers in a multiversity, which to my mind is becoming increasingly commercially oriented. These writers have described the abhorrent way the government treats refugees such as Ali Panah, the loopholes of the Work and Income system, the contradictions of American foreign policy, the waste of taxpayer money on organ donation incentives, how to invest your student loan, the democratic implications of the Electoral Finance Bill, how the economy is designed to enslave us, why VSM is a bad move, how television is the drug of a nation, and why coolness is the new conformity. I’d like to think we have contributed to meaningful debate on campus. For at least one who considered the editor “a bit of a dick who’s always crusading against the world” at Motel bar last month, I know that’s the case.

The role of the editor is not easy, and at times I’ve felt like I’ve been tramping up steep terrain. While that’s produced some great views, I’m looking forward to taking a break from it all. Being on the inside is a dangerous place. Exploiting the editorial independence of Salient, I’ve tried to make the magazine the refuge of fringe ideas, ones that can’t be published in the likes of the Dominion Post. I am indebted to all of the writers, illustrators, lawyers, artists, and grammar nazis who have contributed to this. You deserve recognition for the thousands of words, ideas and countless hours contributed, and probably a lot more cash than Salient ever paid some of you.

I’m going to start with my recognition with the guy who pays me, Geoff da boss. Thanks for your professionalism and respect for Salient’s editorial independence.

Perhaps worthy of most mention is (Saint) Nick Archer, Salient’s unofficial office manager and general workhorse. Nick was the brains behind the watershed SalientTV, the Visual Arts Editor and New Media Columnist. Nick wrote features, film, book and music reviews and subsequently has produced over 89 articles, never missed a deadline and spent over 60 hours a week, working in the office, for no pay. You are made of gold.

The next most important person in the Salient crew was the designer Tony, or Antonio Bandarias as I affectionately called you. Your positive attitude and relaxed nature was essential to the demands involved with the job. I don’t need to go on about how important you have been, you hear it all the time.

Other thanks must be provided to the members of the publications committee – Chris Bishop, Aaron Packard, Geoff and Mary Jane, who have been instrumental in providing me with a supportive environment to work and develop the magazine. In particular, Chair Alexander Nielsen has been a resource par excellence, and his institutional knowledge with matters concerning the constitution has been essential.

To the team of feature writers – Rob Addison, Tristan Egarr, Jenah Shaw, Nicola Kean, and Duncan McKinlay – thank you for providing excellent ideas and damn hard work. It’s been a pleasure to work with such talent. Thanks for putting up with my at times demanding suggestions. Special ups to Tristan, who has the remarkable ability to pull out excellent features with sometimes just one day’s notice.

The columnists were varied and quite an eccentric lot. I really enjoyed my chats with Gonzo the news mole’s Ben den Ouden, and of course the real Becci, whom I never met in person, and her replacement, Matt Proctor when she bailed on us. I can only guess she got hitched. Ali’s renting column was always excellent. Robbie Neilson was probably the most strange of the columnists with his obsession with getting naked and showing me the pictures and drawings. Robbie started Salient Speed Dating too, which is kind of worrying. Thanks also to the idiots – Chris Dawson and Mark Scott, your column got funnier as the year went on. Michael Oliver’s sports copy was always on time, and Neil Miller’s beer column received some of the best feedback of any column, particularly among young males. Eleanor Bishop’s theatre pages were also superbly written. Thanks Laura, Pachali, Gabrielle and Ali too.

In the opinion department, I’d like to thank Perigo, but of course that would mean that I’d be labelled an islamofascist supporter. I only censored you once, last week when you got sexist on me. Freedom of speech has its limits. To the Brothers in Anarchy, cheers for your arguments, always insightful and less of a headache. Thanks also to the guests who occupied “Counterpoint”.

Laura was pretty cool, and her team of news writers were cool too. Your headlines were always a source of wonder. To your team Seonah Choi, Jenah Powell, Laura Malcom and James Ramsey – mucho gratsis.

Stacey – Thanks for your commitment to the scene, massive effort, putting up with our screw ups, and big ups to Tom Baragwanath for being consistently solid.

To the subbies Charlotte Whitelaw, Alix Walles, Jennifer Hutchinson, Peter Wolodzo, Alby, Tim and Laura, Emma Kuperus and Nic Dowell – Thanks for remaining motivated after being drip-feed book vouchers.

Dave Crampton’s wild and eccentric ideas were always a wonder to behold on Monday morning when he would storm into the office, down a coffee and bombard us with his personality. Your attitude, insight and advice was highly valued. Thanks for remaining friends after I gave your articles misleading headlines.

I loved the way Stephen Hay would allow working party ideas to creep into the films section. The topical film of the week was a great idea.

Martin Doyle and Michael Botur’s ability to conceptualise feature content and turn them into illustrations on a weekly basis transformed the pages of Salient into raw visual creations. Thanks to Emma Cullen, Arlo Edwards and Brent Willis for your contributions too.

Legal – Cheers to Steven Price and Graeme Edgler. Graeme’s incredible knowledge of the constitution and legal advice was second to none, and free.

Thanks to Tim McKenzie, David Newton, Sean Paurini, Tracey Dent, and the Nicoll whanau – Janina, Louise and Richard- for the emotional support. The coffees, kind words and dinners gave me strength. Cheers to the distributors Stubbs, Sophie and Jamie Palmer.

Mary Jane- it was a pleasure to work on the Te Reo issue with you.

Jon McQueen – Thanks for your reliability, exceptional ability at your job, and iPod playlists.

Finally, thanks heaps to Michael Langdon, an exceptional volunteer subbie who served his time deep in the trenches of Salient, when the pizza had run dry and morning sparrows started to sing. At 3am, with just Langdon, Tony and Nick around, we bonded like brothers.



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Comments (6)

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  1. Nic says:

    you ruined salient geoff da moari

  2. Ned says:

    Enjoy unemployment, Steven.

  3. Nic says:

    he won’t be unemployed long
    he’ll keep trying to beat up members of the media
    until there are none left
    at all
    he will be king of media

    yes even you chomsky

  4. 'Like a typewriter pecking at his keyboard' says:

    I thought he was meant to do that last year

  5. 'Like a typewriter pecking at his keyboard' says:

    wait i don’t get the joke … is there a joke

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