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Eddie and Frank McGuire: good cop, bad cop

By Sasha Uzunov - posted Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Eddie and soon to be politician Frank McGuire would have to be Australia’s most successful media brother act of all time. In their most recent shtick they play good cop, bad cop.

Eddie, the younger of the two, has packaged himself as the man of the people, sports journalist, football club president, television quiz show host, and staunch republican and Australian patriot.

Ironically, as a patriot Eddie has in his sports commentary discarded Australian terms such as “loss of possession, away game and a hat trick of wins” for the American equivalents of “turnover, road game and a three-peat (repeat).”


In the early 1980’s, Eddie, as an Australian Rules Football expert, tried to popularise the American Football concept of the ‘Quarterback,” that is a player in defence who launches attacks. This never took off.

David Parkin, a coaching great and deep thinker, was closer to the money when he predicted that Aussie Rules had many things in common with Soccer. In fact, we now have the soccer term of the “midfield” being bandied about Aussie Rules, as well as the defensive, low scoring style of game, pioneered by Italian soccer.

In 2008, Eddie donned his “good cop” hat when he used his newspaper column to report:

“PEOPLE convicted of serious assault would be offered two years' army service instead of a jail sentence under a radical plan.

The proposal is being floated by senior police and will be put to Defence Department officials, lawyers and the Justice Department.

And it is backed by victims of assaults and their families, who say it's time to tackle the state's violence head-on.

Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Gary Jamieson said he was aware of the plan and it had merit.”

This like the Quarterback proposal, never got off the ground.

Older brother Frank, who helped Eddie get a start in journalism, built a reputation as a hard hitting investigative television reporter, exposing corruption and alleging Victoria Police wrongdoing. He has also worked as a political spinner for the ALP and the now defunct Democrats.


Frank, you could say has played bad cop to Eddie’s good cop, by winning two Walkley Awards, Australia’s highest journalism award, for alleging police corruption within Victoria. He is now poised to become an ALP Member of the Victorian State Parliament for the safe Labor seat of Broadmeadows, currently held by the outgoing Premier John Brumby.

In 1992, as a reporter on the ABC TV’s Four Corner’s program, Frank in a story titled “Deadly Force” examined the high number of police shootings in Victoria during the 1980s and early 1990s, including the Walsh Street killings. The inference being that Police overstepped the mark in firing at the bad guys.

If Frank gets elected in the by-election for Broadmeadows he has the opportunity to raise these allegations of police corruption in the appropriate forum, the Victorian State Parliament. Likewise, the Police Minister and Deputy Premier Peter Ryan can apply the blowtorch of scrutiny to Frank’s claims.

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About the Author

Sasha Uzunov graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia, in 1991. He enlisted in the Australian Regular Army as a soldier in 1995 and was allocated to infantry. He served two peacekeeping tours in East Timor (1999 and 2001). In 2002 he returned to civilian life as a photo journalist and film maker and has worked in The Balkans, Iraq and Afghanistan. His documentary film Timor Tour of Duty made its international debut in New York in October 2009. He blogs at Team Uzunov.

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