GERARD HENDERSON’S MEDIA WATCH DOG – ISSUE NO. 168

1 FEBRUARY 2013

 

See the end of this week’s MWD for details of much appreciated comments on/endorsements of Nancy’s work by Jonathan Green & Michael Rowland, Malcolm Farr,  Bob Ellis, Tom Cowie, Mike Carlton, Mark Latham, Robert Manne, Marius Benson, James Jeffrey, Andrew Crook and more besides. Well done chaps – and lotsa thanks.

THIS WEEK – READ ALL ABOUT:

 

●  Stop Press : Aunty Special: On Jon Faine and Mark Scott; Fran Kelly’s Tony Abbott’s whinge; Paul Bongiorno’s RN’s New (Left) Luggage; A Fawn Again Leigh Sales Gushes Up to Hillary Clinton

Jonathan Biggins & the Newcastle Left – A Curious Omission from His Good Weekend  Rant

Nancy’s Pick-of-the-Week: The Age Stumbles As The Silly Season Ends

Can You Bear It? Mark Latham’s Double Standards on Mr and Mrs Abbott and the need for Privacy

● Paul Kent Takes a Dive After Falsely Comparing Anthony Mundine with Ambrose Palmer

Correspondence: Dennis Atkins Fails to Produce Evidence 

 

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STOP PRESS: AN AUNTY SPECIAL

 

● Nice Mr Scott Avoids Personal Decision on Jon Faine

The Australian reports this morning that ABC Radio 774 presenter Jon Faine intends to contest a finding against him from ABC Audience & Consumer Affairs.  This is a rare event.  The bureaucrats at Audience & Consumer Affairs overwhelmingly reject complaints made against ABC presenters, producers and journalists.  However, on this (rare) occasion Audience & Consumer Affairs criticised Faine’s conduct when interviewing two commentators – Michael Smith and Mark Baker concerning what has been called the AWU affair.

In The Australian today, Nick Leys reports Jon Faine as saying:

There are very important issues at stake. As far as I’m concerned I’m not satisfied with the findings and will pursue the matter further.  I’m unhappy with the finding, I don’t think it’s right and will see where I can take it.

As ABC managing director and editor-in-chief, Mark Scott is paid substantially more than the Treasurer Wayne Swan.  When there is a complaint about a senior ABC figure like Jon Faine, this clearly is a matter for the public broadcaster’s editor-in-chief to resolve.  However, nice Mr Scott delegates such key matters to middle level ABC bureaucrats based in Canberra.

Last year, it was Audience & Consumer Affairs – not managing director Mark Scott – who issued an apology to Coalition frontbencher Scott Morrison after he was unprofessionally criticised by senior ABC journalist Stephen Long.  And now, once again, Mr Scott has delegated a key decision about broadcast standards to the bowels of the ABC bureaucracy.

 

● Fran Kelly – “Where’s Tony?” Complaint

What a stunning performance by Fran (“I’m an activist” ) Kelly on The Drum on ABC News 24 last night.  Each morning Ms Kelly fronts up as a supposedly fair and balanced presenter on the ABC Radio National Breakfast program.  Then on other occasions – on such programs as The Drum and Insiders – Ms Kelly presents as a highly opinionated commentator, of a leftist bent.

These days at the ABC, under the management of nice Mr Scott, staff can be both presenters/reporters and opinionated commentators.  Fran Kelly is not the only taxpayer funded public broadcaster who acts out both roles.  So do the likes of Waleed Aly, Jonathan Green, Stephen Long, Marius Benson, Julian Morrow and more besides.

What is surprising about Fran Kelly’s dual roles is that she lacks the self-awareness to understand why Opposition Leader Tony Abbott may not want to be interviewed by a presenter who doubles as an opinionated commentator.  Especially since Ms Kelly has admitted to being a political activist – a description she withdrew only after it received public criticism.

On The Drum last night, Fran Kelly responded to a leading question by presenter Steve Cannane as to whether the Liberal Party leader was avoiding the media.  Giving self-indulgence a nod, Ms Kelly whinged:

Fran Kelly : We have a bid in for the Opposition leader at the moment – which we’ve had in for a week or so. We haven’t even had an acknowledgement of the bid. We did do an interview with Tony Abbott – I did an interview with him on Breakfast last July when the carbon tax came on….  So he has come on twice with me since the election which is not many times at all. He is hard to get. Insiders have had difficulty getting him and yet the Bolt Report, I think, has had him on Channel 10 four times in the last year.

 

The pro-Labor commentator Damian Smith, who was also on the panel, supported Mr Abbott’s tactics.  He made the point that the Opposition leader would be wasting his time going on RN Breakfast :

Damian Smith : I think he [Abbott] should be doing more.  But….Fran, no disrespect. But do you think he’s going to win one vote on your program?  I don’t think he will change one vote to him on your program.  I really don’t.

Damian Smith’s point is a valid one.  Tony Abbott is not likely to persuade one RN Breakfast listener to change their vote and support him in the election on 14 September 2013.  Not one.  In other words, the risk is all on the down-side.  All the more so since Fran Kelly’s political sympathies clearly lie on the Greens/Labor left side of the political debate.

It’s much the same with Lateline, 7.30 and Four Corners.  The truth is that the Liberal Party leader does not need to do interviews with aggressive presenters like Tony Jones/Emma Alberici or Leigh Sales or former Gough Whitlam staffer Kerry O’Brien to win the next election.  If Coalition politicians believe that they are not treated fairly and professionally on some ABC programs, it makes sense for them to make their point by declining invitations.  Who knows? In time, nice Mr Scott may get the message. Certainly standing up to ABC presenters – both on and off air – has not done NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell any harm at all.

Fran Kelly claimed on The Drum that Tony Abbott’s very credibility turned on his willingness to be interviewed by her and other ABC presenters.  This is just self-serving nonsense.  If Tony Abbott believes he is handled unprofessionally by Fran Kelly, he is entitled to use his scarce time to talk to someone else.

Yet More Left Luggage on RN Breakfast – Or Welcome Paul Bongiorno

 

While on the topic of RN Breakfast, it was announced this week that Channel 10 political editor Paul Bongiorno – who has been dumped as presenter of the Channel 10 Meet the Press program – will become a regular political commentator on RN Breakfast. Mr Bongiorno will now share the daily political commentary spot with The Age’s Michelle Grattan, who used to do the gig alone from Monday to Friday.

It’s a strange – but not unexpected – choice. Paul Bongiorno is widely regarded as the Canberra Press Gallery member who is most consistently hostile to the Coalition.  Indeed, Bongiorno has described himself as “liberal”  in the American sense of the term –  meaning left-wing.

It is a matter of fact that RN is already replete with left-of-centre types, or leftists.  Including Fran (“I’m an activist”) Kelly, Waleed (“Tony Abbott is a reactionary”) Aly, Julian Morrow of The Chaser Boys (Average Age 373/4) and the socialist millionaire Phillip Adams along with Jonathan (“The LNP are sort of Nazis”) Green and so on.  RN does not employ one conservative presenter or producer or paid commentator on any of its main programs. Not one.

Yet, RN Breakfast producer Tim Latham thought that what his program needed was another leftie on the payroll. Fair dinkum.

Leigh Sales – Fawn Again

It seems that the very able Leigh Sales has two personas.  There is the aggressive, interrupting Ms Sales – a persona which is evident when interviewing the likes of Tony Abbott and Cardinal George Pell.  And there is the tame, sucking-up Ms Sales – a persona which is evident when interviewing the likes of social democrat and feminist hero Hillary Clinton.

Last Tuesday, Leigh Sales was honoured to receive an invitation from the United States’ State Department to interview its out-going boss Hillary Clinton before an audience at the Newseum in Washington DC.  It seems that the international left-liberal media is in the process of passing its uncritical admiration from President Barack Obama to Secretary Clinton (who may contest the presidential election in 2016).

In any event, Ms Sales lived up to the task.  She put in an articulate, highly competent performance.  However, there were no critical questions addressed to Hillary Clinton and no hostile interjections from the presenter.  Just a Hillary love-in as the star-struck Leigh Sales exhibited all the characteristics of the Fawn Again.  Little wonder that Ms Clinton described Leigh Sales’ performance as “masterful”.

JONATHAN (OR IS IT JONNY?) BIGGINS – BAGS (THE CATHOLIC) CARDINAL GEORGE PELL BUT NOT (THE ANGLICAN) DEAN GRAEME LAWRENCE

There was enormous, truly enormous, interest in last week’s MWD’s  special – “Nancy’s Awards for Remarkable Media Performances in 2012” (MWD Issue 167). Particularly in comedian Jonathan Biggins’ prestigious gong for invincible ignorance – the reference was to his piece on Cardinal George Pell, the Catholic Archbishop of Sydney which was published in the Good Weekend on 22 December 2012.

Highlights of the MWD’s readers’ response included a correction and some personal information. Here we go:

▪ A reader (somewhere in Melbourne) said that Nancy was too soft in correcting a typo in the Ben Naparstek edited Good Weekend article which carried the Biggins wisdom.  In fact, the comedian did not refer to “the failings of the Catholic Church” but, rather, to its “faiings” (sic). Very sic, in fact. Here is the citation  – for posterity’s sake:

▪ Then another reader (somewhere in Australia) provided an insight into the fashionable luvvie Jonathan Biggins – the very model of a modern ABC leftie, to be sure. According to MWD’s  source, Jonathan’s parents were involved in Newcastle’s Anglican Christ Church Cathedral. Mum Marjorie once worked for the ABC’s Newcomen Street office in Newcastle. [How wonderful. Ed]. And dad Dennis was once a professor at the University of Newcastle. What’s more, Master Jonny (“Call me Jonathan”) Biggins attended for a time the Newcastle Grammar School.  Christ Church Cathedral, the ABC office and Newcastle University were so close that you could pass a toasted cucumber sandwich through all three institutions without it getting cold or without any danger of anyone coming within close proximity of the working class. [That’s a bit unfair – what about the cleaners? – Ed].

It seems that Mum Biggins was involved in the Young Peoples’ Theatre which worked with the ABC Newcastle office and Christ Church Cathedral and Newcastle University’s Drama Department. And, lo and behold, young Jonny’s experience on the stage at the time led to his future brilliant career as a comedian much loved by the ABC, the Sydney Theatre Company’s collective and so on.  It’s from such a background that a young man developed a life-time indifference to, and ignorance of, economics in general and government debt in particular.  Concerning which see JB’s appearance on ABC 1’s Q&A last year (26 November 2012).

But MWD digresses.  The point about the Anglican Christ  Church Cathedral in Newcastle is that it contained a number of men who were subsequently accused of the very behaviour which so upset Jonathan Biggins when he wrote about the Catholic Church in Ben Naparstek’s Good Weekend.

On 10 September 2012, around the very time that Biggins was drafting his attack on “the faiings [sic] of the Catholic Church”, the Newcastle Herald revealed that Anglican Archbishop of Newcastle Brian Farran had defrocked three Anglican priests for past sexual misconduct following allegations from a man called “Mr M” about his teenage years.  Among the defrocked priests was Graeme Lawrence, the former Dean of Christ Church Cathedral.

How unfortunate that Jonathan Biggins did not have the inclination to include the Newcastle Anglican Dean Graeme Lawrence among “the public figures who made headlines for all the wrong reasons in 2012” in his Good Weekend piece.  Perhaps next year Good Weekend editor Ben Naparstek just might give Jonny Biggins a chance to write about the “faiings” [sic] of the Anglican Church’s Newcastle diocese.

NANCY’S PICK OF THE SILLY SEASON –

 

STEP FORWARD THE GUARDIAN-ON-THE-YARRA

As followers of the media – and MWD – will be aware, lesser mortals take holidays. Whereas journalists engage in a well-earned break.  As far as the ABC is concerned, WEB time commences in early December and concludes sometime after Australia Day.  It’s much the same with some other media outlets.

The journalistic WEB is invariably replaced by what is called the Silly Season. Nancy just loves this special time.  So much so that she has established an award for the silliest contribution to the Silly Season.  As would be expected, there was much competition for this gong in December 2012 and January 2013.  And the winner is The Age aka The-Guardian-on-the-Yarra – with a surge towards the end of the period with a trio of entries. Here they are:

▪ 25 January 2013.  On the eve of Australia Day, The Age runs a pompous editorial titled “Britain’s bold recipe for Europe is half-baked” which concludes: “The Age believes Britain should stay in the European Union for its own long-term, social, economic and political good, as well as for the good of the region in which it naturally belongs”.  A modern version of the “I told the Kaiser” mantra.

The Age criticised Prime Minister David Cameron’s speech, which was delivered in London on 23 January 2013.   The Age editorialised against Mr Cameron on what it called five “perspectives”. Namely (i) “isolationism”, (ii) “Anglo-scepticism from the European side”, (iii) “Euro-scepticism from the British side”, (iv) “the view from 2015” and (v) “the view from 2017”.  Fascinating, eh?

The Age even quoted the French foreign minister Laurent Fabius as hectoring Mr Cameron in the following terms: “Let’s imagine Europe is a football club and you join it.  Once you’re in it, you can’t say, ‘Let’s play rugby’.”  Perhaps not.  But you can quit and join a club that suits you. Just as you can desist from buying a newspaper like The Age which does not publish even one weekly commentator of a conservative bent.

Tragically for The Age, everything was true about its David Cameron critique – except for the facts.  There were references to the Conservative Party’s “coalition partner” which was variously named as “the Social Democrats” and “the SDP”.  The editorial writer also referred to a certain “David Milliband” as the Labour Party leader.  As MWD readers well know, the Liberal Democrats are the Tories’ coalition partner (the SDP went out of operation some years ago) and David Milliband’s brother, Ed Milliband, is the British Labour Party leader.

▪ Then, on 26 January 2013, The Saturday Age wrap-around featured a large artistic work by John Olsen.  Inside the paper, this painting was described as “Frog Pond 2013” – implying that John Olsen had painted the work in the previous 25 days.   However, a careful scrutiny of John Olsen’s signature on his work, reveals that the painting is “Lily Pond 97”. Nevertheless, The Age is offering a “limited edition reproduction” of “Frog Pond 2013” for a mere $485 (unframed). Accompanied by – wait for it – “a certificate of authenticity”.

▪ Then, the front page of The Age on 26 January 2013 carried a story by Tony Wright titled “Tom Uren, a man of letters: POW, MP, OA”. The story continued on Page 5 under the following sub-title “Tom Uren, Australia’s man of letters: POW, MP and now add OA”.  Er, not really.  The award which Tom Uren received in the Australia Day nominations is an AO – not an OA.  It designates that the recipient is an Officer of the Order of Australia.

Clearly The-Guardian-on-the-Yarra performed with distinction in the Silly Season. So much so that it has set the bar very high for Silly Season 2013/14

CAN YOUR BEAR IT? – FEATURING MARK LATHAM

According to the proverb, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. If this is true, then Nancy’s (male) co-owner is having flattery laid out with a trowel.  You see, the failed Labor leader Mark Latham has taken to using the term “Can you bear it?” while writing for various blog sites.  All the while financed by his taxpayer funded $78,000 (fully indexed) annual superannuation handout.

In any event, the Lair of Liverpool gets a mention in this week’s Can You Bear It? segment for two truly outstanding contributions.

▪ Targeting Margie Abbott

 

In his Australian Financial Review column yesterday, titled “Margie cut from Abbott’s cloth”, Mark Latham banged on about Tony Abbott and his family. According to Latham:

For a so-called conservative, Tony Abbott breaks a lot of political conventions.  One of the unwritten rules of Australian politics is that spouses play a minimal role, campaigning mainly at election time. Last year Margie Abbott took an increasingly high profile, the zenith of which was her televised Christmas message to the Australian people, delivered jointly with her husband.

This is carefully crafted Liberal Party strategy, using Margie and the Abbott children as human shields, batting away Labor’s misogyny campaign against the Opposition Leader. On the flipside to this tactic, Mrs Abbott now falls within the normal rules of democratic accountability.  With her unprecedented involvement in the political debate, she should be treated no differently to any other senior figure over the next eight months, leading into the September 14 election.

Talk about double standards. When Mark Latham was elected Labor leader in December 2003, he fronted up to a media conference in Canberra accompanied by his wife, two young sons and his mother. [Did he also bring along the family cat? – Ed].  Then when Mr Latham launched Labor’s election manifesto in the 2004 election, he was introduced by – wait for it – his wife.  And now Mark Latham bags Tony Abbott for involving his wife and adult daughters in politics.  Can you bear it?

Giving Hypocrisy a Bad Name

Earlier, on 10 January 2013, the Australian Financial Review’s Jason Murphy interviewed Mark Latham about something or other.  Before talking to Jason Murphy, the failed Labor leader wanted to know whether he was the one and the same Damien Murphy.  When the answer was in the negative, the Lair of Liverpool continued:

In 2004 [Damien] Murphy wrote an expose of my sex life. You hope in some parts of your life, people can respect the normal boundaries of privacy…. If you are a talented business person earning good money, happy family life, making a contribution to your company, you look at all this other rubbish and think, “Geez, why would I go do that? Why would I change a happy, successful life for the pitfalls of [controversial cartoonist] Larry Pickering, [or] Damien Murphy?”

Believe it or not, this is the very same Mark Latham who, in The Latham Diaries :

▪ named a married male Labor MP (with a child) and a female lobbyist whom “he asserted had a “long-running relationship”. This claim was false.

▪ named a female journalist with whom he “once had a fling”.

▪ named a former senior Labor staffer who had an affair with the wife of a then senior ALP operative, who was also named.

▪ referred to his first wife, whom he named, as “the witch”.  In follow-up publicity for The Latham Diaries, Mark Latham told journalist Bernard Lagan that his ex-wife was a lesbian. Latham just made this up.

And now the Australian Financial Review is uncritically reporting Mark Latham’s claim that the normal boundaries of privacy should be respected. Can you bear it? [ Er, no. But here’s a point.  Why does the AFR editor Michael Stutchbury pay out good money for such hypocritical sludge? – Ed].

A SPORTING INTERLUDE

 

Paul Kent Floored by “Choc” Mundine – Outside the Ring (Sadly)

Has anyone been following the antics of  the Daily Telegraph’s Paul Kent concerning last Wednesday’s IBF middle-weight title fight between Anthony Mundine and Daniel Gaele? According to the experts, Gaele was a convincing winner on points but 37 year old Mundine put in a great performance against a world class opponent.

For some reason, Kent felt the need to grandstand by taking on Mundine – only in a verbal sense, of course – for the benefit of Daily Telegraph readers.  Here’s the News Limited tabloid’s account of the early part of Round 2 in the Kent v Mundine big (media conference) match – as published in the Daily Telegraph last Tuesday.

Paul Kent: You say you’re the best athlete ever but you’re the only one that says it ….Well, can you name me one other person that has said it?”

Anthony Mundine: You name me someone that done what I did and conquered two sports like I did.

Paul Kent : Bo Jackson.

Anthony Mundine: That’s team to team. We’re going from a team to boxing.

Paul Kent: Ambrose Palmer.

Anthony Mundine: Never heard of him.

Paul Kent : Aboriginal boxer, also played AFL.

Anthony Mundine:  Never heard of him. I’m talking world titles. I’m talking records, doing what I done.

Nancy scored this contest as a TKO victory by Mundine.  On any analysis, Anthony Mundine is a world class performer in two sports – Rugby League and boxing.  Ambrose Palmer (1910-1990) played 83 games of Australian Rules Football for Footscray between 1933 and 1943.  He was a good player but not a star.  Likewise with boxing. In other words Palmer was not up to Mundine’s standard in either sport.  Moreover, contrary to Paul Kent’s claim, Ambrose Palmer was not Aboriginal.

CORRESPONDENCE

 Concerning The Inaccurate Claim By Dennis Atkins & Malcolm Farr (supported by Mark Latham) That Tony Abbott Specifically And Unequivocally Accused Julia Gillard Of Criminality in Late 2012

There has been considerable interest in the segment titled “Nancy’s Pick-of-the-Week: Malcolm and Dennis Go On and On on Insiders” in the last issue for 2012 (MWD Issue 166, 7 December 2012). In this piece, Gerard Henderson agreed with Niki Savva and Barrie Cassidy that – on 29 November 2012 – Tony Abbott said that Prime Minister Julia Gillard appeared

to have broken the law.  The Savva/Cassidy stance was taken in response to claims by Dennis Atkins and Malcolm Farr on Insiders (Sunday 1 December 2012) that the Opposition leader had accused the Prime Minister of “criminality” (Atkins) or engaging in “criminal” behaviour (Farr). The alleged comment by Abbott was said to have been made on Thursday 29 November 2012.

The MWD piece referred to Tony Abbott’s comments at a doorstop.  Mr Abbott did do a doorstop on 29 November. He also discussed this matter during an appearance, earlier in the day, on the Channel 9 Today program.

In recent times, Mark Latham – following Atkins and Farr – has also asserted that, on 29 November 2012, Abbott accused Gillard of an act of “criminality”.

No such claim was ever made by Tony Abbott – as is evident in the Correspondence which took place between Dennis Atkins and Gerard Henderson in December 2012 – and which is published in full below:

Dennis Atkins to Gerard Henderson – 7 December 2012

On your website Media Watch Dog you say, “In fact what Dennis Atkins claimed to be an “exact quote” from Tony Abbott was nothing of the kind” after quoting me as saying Tony Abbott said there was clearly a breach of the law. What Tony Abbott did say – and I think it is close enough to what I said to make the quotes equal in meaning was “that would certainly be a breach of the law”.

Here is what he told Lisa Wilkinson on The Today Show on the morning of November 29:

“It (the new partial transcript of 1995 interview between Gillard and her law partners) demonstrates that she misled the West Australian Corporate Affairs Commission and that is obviously a very serious matter.

“That would certainly be in breach of the law.”

Dennis Atkins

Gerard Henderson to Dennis Atkins – 10 December 2012

Dennis

I missed your email because it went to the general email address.   I have been busy today but I will look at the matter tonight and, if necessary, make a correction/clarification.

I have not been able to obtain a copy of the Today transcript so I went with the Tony Abbott doorstop which I recorded on TV and which also appeared in a Lateline transcript. If you have the full Abbott/Wilkinson interview I would like to have it.

Best wishes

Gerard

Dennis Atkins to Gerard Henderson – 10 December 2012

 

i don’t have the full transcript Gerard. I saw most the interview on Sky and Tony Abbott’s office released it in full during the day. I used it for an article the next day, Friday, November 30. I later deleted it. I do not keep the dozens of interview transcripts I get every day – they are usually put on ministerial, parliamentary or party websites. I can’t find this one on Abbott’s or the Liberal Party’s websites. Abbott’s office would have a full copy. I can assure you the section I quoted in The Courier-Mail and, almost verbatim, on Insiders was correct.
Regards

Dennis

Gerard Henderson to Dennis Atkins – 11 December 2012

Dennis

As promised, I have followed up your claim that I made an error in last Friday’s Media Watch Dog where I wrote:

In fact what Dennis Atkins claimed to be an “exact quote” from Tony Abbott was nothing of the kind.  Here Savva and Cassidy were correct – and Atkins and Farr were both wrong.

Having checked all the broadcasts, I stand by this statement.

In your email to me on 7 December 2012 you wrote:

Here is what he [Tony Abbott] told Lisa Wilkinson on The Today Show on the morning of November 29: “It [the new partial transcript of 1995 interview between Gillard and her law partners] demonstrates that she misled the West Australian Corporate Affairs Commission and that is obviously a very serious matter. That would certainly be in breach of the law.”

On Insiders on Sunday 1 December 2012 you said that you had a transcript of this interview and that it was “clear” that Abbott had said that Julia Gillard was a criminal.  You also denied the claim by Niki Savva and Barrie Cassidy that Abbott had said that the Prime Minister appeared to have broken the law.  You strongly disagreed – saying “no” on seven occasions – and made the following comment:

The exact quote was “this is clearly a breach of the law”. “This is clearly a breach of the law”. He wasn’t equivocating, there was no wriggle room.

As you made clear in your email, you do not have a transcript of Abbott’s Today  interview.  Instead you relied on your own report in The Courier-Mail on 30 November 2012 – but did not reveal this to Insiders’  viewers.

The problem is that your original report in The Courier Mail  was incorrect.  I have checked the Today interview of 29 November 2012 – it is still located on the Channel 9 website.  This is what occurred at the commencement of the interview – which was between Tony Abbott and Karl Stefanovic (not Lisa Wilkinson).

 

Karl Stefanovic : Let’s get on to this document first of all – it will give you some ammunition, I’m sure.  How does this document change the game for the PM?

Tony Abbott:  Well, it demonstrates that she misled the West Australian Corporate Affairs Commission.  And that is obviously a very serious matter. That would certainly appear to be in breach of the law.  So, this is a very serious matter.

In short, what Tony Abbott said on Today was consistent with what he said at his door stop later that day – which I quoted in MWD Issue 166. You deleted the word “appear” from the interview – which had the effect of changing Mr Abbott’s meaning.

In other words, what you claimed on Insiders to be an “exact quote” from Tony Abbott was not an exact quote at all – rather, it was an inaccurate quote.  In view of this, I will not be making any correction or clarification to MWD Issue 166. You, however, may wish to correct your piece which appeared in The Courier-Mail of 30 November 2012.

Best wishes

Gerard Henderson

READ ALL ABOUT IT – COMMENTS ON/ENDORSEMENTS OF MWD

Jonathan Green: “Nancy, will be taking notes, I suspect”

Michael Rowland: “Nancy…yes.  We’ll get a nice write-up on Friday.  Good morning as well, Gerard. Thanks for watching, by the way.

– ABC 1 News Breakfast, 18 October 2012

“Gerard [Henderson] is a complete f-ckwit”

– Malcolm Farr, via Twitter, 29 June 2012 (circa pre-dinner drinks)

“What a haughty flapping half-arsed buffoon he [Henderson] is”

– Bob Ellis on his Table Talk blog, 8 May 2012 (before breakfast)

“We’d better be careful what we say, just in case Gerard’s offsider pooch Nancy is keeping an eye on us for his delightfully earnest Media Watch Dog”

– Tom Cowie of The Power Index, Crikey 20 January 2012

“Henderson…What a pompous, pretentious turd you are.”

– Mike Carlton, Saturday 13 August 2011 (after lunch)

“Go to the Sydney Institute Media Watch Dog website to marvel at [its] work”

– Mark Latham The Spectator Australia 11 June 2011.

 

Media Watch Dog – “disgraceful”, “sick”

– Professor Robert Manne, April Fool’s Day 2011.

“Before going further can you write to confirm that these emails

are private correspondence and not for publication” – ABC News Radio’s

Marius Benson, 11 March 2011. He did go further – see MWD Issue 86.

“I realise this makes me practically retarded, but until five minutes ago

I thought Nancy was Gerard Henderson’s wife, not his dog.”

– Byronbache via Twitter, Monday 7 February 2011

“Gerard Henderson is big enough to take care of himself, but that doesn’t stop us worrying about him from time to time.  Lately it’s Hendo’s tendency to self-harm that has us losing sleep. For example, peruse the correspondence he’s published in his latest Media Watch Dog blog…..There’s a part of us that just wants to ask: “Hendo, are you OK?”

– James Jeffrey’s “Strewth!” column, The Australian, 8 November 2010.

 

“Media Watch Dog on Fridays…is a sort of popular read in the Crikey office”

Crikey’s Andrew Crook on ABC 2 News Breakfast, 24 September 2010.

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