8 AUGUST 2014

The inaugural issue of “Gerard Henderson’s Media Watch” was published in April 1988 – over a year before the first edition of the ABC TV Media Watch program went to air. Since November 1997 “Gerard Henderson’s Media Watch” has been published as part of The Sydney Institute Quarterly. In 2009 Gerard Henderson’s Media Watch Dog blog commenced publication.



    Did anyone hear the stunning interview of Mike Carlton by Richard Aedy on ABC Radio National’s The Media Report last evening? What a love-in. The leftist ABC employee Richard Aedy gave the leftist former ABC employee Mike Carlton a really soft interview. Aedy gave the impression that Carlton’s decision to quit writing his Saturday Sydney Morning Herald column resulted from his refusal to accept a suspension following the (belated) discovery by SMH editors that he had been abusing readers by email and tweets.

    Richard Aedy fudged the issue. Aedy implied that all of Carlton’s rude responses were in reply to rude comments by Jewish Australians who objected to his column in the Sydney Morning Herald on 26 July 2014.

    Complete tosh. As avid MWD readers will be aware, Carlton has been abusing readers for years on all sorts of issues. Moreover, many of Carlton’s rude replies have been responses to considered, albeit forceful, criticism. The problem is that your man Carlton can dish out criticism – but cannot take criticism. And there was reason aplenty to criticise Carlton’s emotive column on Gaza on 28 July which was accompanied by an anti-semitic illustration (for which the SMH belatedly apologised).

    Mike Carlton went along with Richard Aedy’s quite unprofessional line of questioning and sounded aggrieved. Meanwhile, over on ABC 702, the “Journo’s Forum” on the Richard Glover Drive program was under way with journalist John Mangos among the guests. John Mangos belled the cat about Carlton. Let’s go to the transcript:

    John Mangos: I’ve got absolutely nothing against Carlton. But on this particular issue, he deserves not one scintilla of sympathy. If you’re going to enjoy the prestige of having a forum in which you can voice opinion – and he does very stridently, very strongly – then you’ve got to be prepared to cop it back. If you don’t agree with Mike Carlton – you know, he champions free speech – if your opinion isn’t the same as his, he’s happy to dump you… “Poor woe is me, Mike”. I’m not buying that at all….

    He gets so personally involved. He tweeted an insult to me just a few weeks ago on a different issue….and I was quite offended by it. He took a personal cheap shot at Julie Bishop when she did so well at the UN…. I tweeted…[i.e. that Julie Bishop criticised the expense involved in Australia willing a seat on the United Nations Security Council but still did a good job on the Security Council concerning the MH17 disaster] – and he tweeted “F_F_S [for f-ck’s sake] …pompous twat”.

    So there you go. John Mangos is not Jewish. And Julie Bishop’s involvement in the UN on MH17 had nothing to do with Israel. Yet John Mangos still received a bucket-load of foul abuse from Carlton for speaking well of the Foreign Minister on the MH17 disaster. But you would never know that if you had only heard Richard Aedy’s oh-so-soft interview with his bestie Mike Carlton.


    Historian David Day has made a career out of his allegation that Robert Menzies wanted to abandon Australia and live in Britain in the early 1940s. As part of this thesis, Dr Day (for a doctor he is) claims that early in the Second World War many members of British society wanted Robert Menzies to replace Winston Churchill as prime minister for Britain and that Menzies went along with this proposal.

    There’s only one problem with this thesis. There is no evidence to support it. In her latest book Menzies at War, Nancy’s (female) co-owner demolishes Day’s thesis after an examination of all the extant evidence in Britain and Australia.

    In the current issues of The Spectator Australia and Australian Book Review, David Day reacted with some bitterness to Menzies at War and attempted to bag Anne Henderson’s work. Along with that of the late Allan Martin who came to a similar conclusion as Anne Henderson.

    This week Gerard Henderson wrote to David Day asking him to provide the evidence – by citing a book, or an article, with a page reference – which independently supported his theory that some Brits wanted to replace Churchill with Menzies in 1941 and that Menzies went along with the idea.

    This was a simple request – in view of the fact that David Day has been banging on about his thesis for some two decades. Guess what? Dr Day says he is too busy to reply but may do so some time in the future. In other words, David Day cannot supply evidence to support his comments in the current issues of The Spectator Australia and Australian Book Review. [Don’t the editors of these illustrious journals do any fact-checking? – Ed].

    Go to the Correspondence section for the exchange between Hendo and David (“I’m flat out like a lizard drinking”) Day and observe the latter avoid the request for evidence.

    Can you bear it graphic


    In his “Bookmarks” column in The Age last Saturday, Jason Steger revealed that August 2014 will be a “big month for Raimond Gaita”. You see, your man Gaita’s Melbourne University lecture series re-commences in August.

    As usual, this is one of the on-going series of “debates” much favoured by Melbourne University where only those on the left get a guernsey. In this sense, Melbourne University models the Conservative-Free-Zone that is the ABC.

    In case MWD’s hundreds of thousands of avid readers are interested to know how their taxes are spent (per courtesy of Melbourne University) here’s the roll-up for Rai Gaita’s latest series – this one titled “Whatever Happened to Democracy?”

    ▪ Professor Rai Gaita (Chair)

    ▪ Carolyn Evans

    ▪ Gerry Simpson

    ▪ Ghassan Hage

    ▪ Cheryl Saunders

    ▪ Anne Manne

    Perhaps Melbourne University could sponsor a series – to be chaired by Nancy – titled “Whatever Happened to Conservatives?”.

    Meanwhile Jason Steger reports that last Wednesday Helen Garner, from Sandalista Central, launched A Sense for Humanity – this being a collection of essays about Professor Gaita’s “ethical thought”. Contributors include J.M. Coetzee, Alex Miller, Dorothy Scott, Craig Taylor and, of course, Anne Manne.

    MWD will read – but is unlikely to understand – A Sense of Humanity. After all, your man Gaita’s writings are quite incomprehensible. A fact which Rai Gaita acknowledges when advising his readers to read his work at least two or three times if they really want to know what he is on about.

    Meanwhile an avid MWD reader has sent the following report re the Melbourne Law School’s “Religious Diversity, Dissent and Democracy” opening night last Wednesday:

    I attended a lecture on Democracy by Rai Gaita at Melbourne Law School this week. He was very complimentary of such great thinkers as Robert Manne, Clive Hamilton & Guy Rundle, as you might expect. He spent a good deal of his lecture banging on about climate change & torture, among other things. It seems he’s all in favour of democracy – although conditions DO apply…

    We’ll keep you posted.


    It’s around two years since failed former Labor leader Mark Latham spat the dummy and quit as a columnist for The Spectator Australia. He became the first columnist in human history to quit his job due to a prize awarded by a dog.

    What happened was that the Lair of Liverpool learnt via Media Watch Dog that Tom Switzer (former editor of The Spectator Australia) had won Nancy’s prestigious Five Paws Award. The gong went to Mr Switzer following his criticism of Mark Latham’s double standards on misogyny on the Radio National Sunday Extra program.

    On learning of the Switzer criticism, Mark Latham dropped his “Latham’s Law” column. But he’s back today – occupying the “Diary” space with reflections on, wait for it, himself. We learn that the Lair of Liverpool (i) has become a writer, (ii) co-owns race-horses, (iii) has just completed a 300 page book and did 10 radio interviews in one week, (iv) was praised by James Carleton on Radio National Breakfast and (v) does not like Sharri Markson. [Could this be because of Ms Markson’s demolition of Latham’s role as an AFR columnist in The Weekend Australian last Saturday? – Ed]

    What the Lair of Liverpool does not mention is that his new lifestyle as a writer-at-leisure is being funded by the taxpayer funded superannuation scheme and amounts to no less than $78,000 a year (fully indexed) – a scheme which he managed to have abolished for parliamentarians elected after he quit politics. Can you bear it?


    While on the topic of James Carleton, an avid MWD reader wants to know why Mr Carleton concluded his interview with Mark Latham on 29 July 2014 as follows: “Hello Gerard, if you’re listening.”

    Answer: MWD does not have a clue. Nor, on some matters, does your man Carleton. On Radio National Breakfast this morning, for example, James Carleton again used the taxpayer funded public broadcaster to state the case for the prosecution against Israel. Once again (see MWD Issue 236), Mr Carleton declared that Gaza is occupied. This time he was corrected by Colonel Richard Kemp (the former commander of the British Armed Forces in Afghanistan) who told him that Hamas was running the joint.

    So James Carleton made a howler on Israel and Gaza last Friday and repeated it this morning. Can you bear it? [Maybe he doesn’t read MWD – Ed].



    Due to unprecedented demand, the Maurice Newman Segment gets another run this week. As MWD readers will know, this (hugely popular) segment is devoted to former ABC chairman Maurice Newman’s suggestion that a certain “group think” might be prevalent at the ABC – and to ABC 1 former Media Watch presenter Jonathan Holmes’ certainty that no such phenomenon is extant within the public broadcaster. See MWD passim.

    Jonathan Green, the ABC’s sneerer-in-chief, is one of the new breed of ABC personalities under the management of Nice Mr Scott. On the (Christian) Sabbath, Mr Green presents the Radio National Sunday Extra program. On other days Jonathan Green appears on The Drum on ABC 1 as well as ABC Radio 702 in Sydney as a commentator and anywhere else he can find a taxpayer funded camera or microphone.

    Last Sunday, your man Green came up with the you-beaut idea of having a secondary school/university style debate which he calls “On the Contrary”. This is how the inaugural segment was presented:

    In this new segment, guests are challenged to argue in an impromptu debate. You never know where the dice is going to fall. This week, the premise to argue is: “Newstart recipients should work for the dole”.

    Good idea? Er, not really. You see the first “debate” involved two leftists. Namely the Melbourne serial commentator and comedian Catherine Deveny and the Sydney based comedian Craig Reucassel who is one of the Chaser “Boys” (average age 381/2). Needless to say, when presenting the case that Newstart recipients should work for the dole – Ms Deveny went into sneer-mode and effectively argued the opposite case. And Mr Reucassel also argued against the proposition. In other words, everyone agreed with everyone else.


    Maurice Newman: 3

    Jonathan Holmes: Zip



    Nancy’s (male) co-owner was devastated, just devastated, that Sydney Morning Herald columnist Mike Carlton spat the dummy last Thursday and quit. The powers-that-be at the SMH finally found that your man Carlton had been sending rude and abusive emails and texts to anyone who criticised him. Especially after lunch, during pre-dinner drinks over a port. The SMH editors are not as quick as Sherlock Holmes since it took them some time to find out what hundreds of thousands of avid MWD readers have known for aeons.

    The Herald decided to suspend Mike Carlton for a month or so. But he was not willing to accept any criticism and quit [Wonder what time it was when the phone call was made – after dinner? – Ed]. Which is a shame – from MWD’s point of view. A REAL SHAME.

    Most weeks since Issue 1 in 2009, MWD has been in receipt of much copy from The Philosopher King of Whale Beach. Moreover, on a personal note, your man Carlton has been kind enough to provide MWD with some you-beaut endorsements. See “Endorsements” below.

    MWD urges readers to support Nancy’s Occupy Darling Park! movement by fronting up outside the Fairfax Media headquarters for a demonstration over the weekend. Anyone who turns up and checks-in with Nancy will receive a special surprise. To wit, a bottle of Bombay Sapphire Gin and a large straw. [Let’s drink to that – Ed].

    MWD is confident that your man Carlton’s resignation will turn into a mere suspension – such will be the impact of Nancy’s Occupy Darling Park! campaign. In the meantime, the Herald needs a columnist who can fill Mike Carlton’s place.

    It’s not so difficult since there was a Mike Carlton script for each Saturday’s SMH column. Here it is – discovered by Nancy’s (male) co-owner under a bar-mat at the Newport Alms Hotel.

    Mike Carlton Column – Pro forma

    ▪ Have a go at Israel in a column illustrated by an anti-semitic cartoon.

    ▪ Attack business – they’re all dishonest creeps.

    ▪ Sneer at Christian believers, especially Catholics – but don’t talk about Muslim believers.

    ▪ Mock Tony Abbott and all Coalition supporters – bastards all.

    ▪ Call all Liberals “Tories” – that will learn them.

    ▪ Dismiss parents who send their children to private schools (like the one I went to myself at Barker College on Sydney’s North Shore) as complete idiots.

    ▪ Laugh at residents of Sydney’s North Shore and Eastern Suburbs and SMH readers in regional and rural New South Wales – and all other fools who buy or advertise in the SMH.

    ▪ Write incessantly about my gorgeous (ABC) wife, my (former) gorgeous wife, my brilliant son, my late father, self.
    ▪ File copy on Friday – after lunch, of course.

    Er, that’s about it.

    [Hang on a minute. I have a brilliant idea about someone who could do the job. What about Bob Ellis, the False Prophet of Palm Beach? He can write on all those topics, and, in addition attack Hillary Clinton. And he lives just up the road from the Philosopher King of Whale Beach. Will he do? – Ed].

    * * * * *



    Place: Fairfax Media HQ, Darling Park, Sydney

    Date: Sunday 10 August 2014

    Time: Gin-o-clock – i.e. after lunch.

    BYO: Bombay Sapphire gin

    RSVP: F-ckwits Only

    nancy favourite gin

    Note there will be a collection at the Occupy Darling Park! rally. All proceeds will go to the establishment of a Deborah Cameron Chair of Advancing Journalism at the University of Technology, Sydney. It is hoped that the Philosopher King of Whale Beach will become the inaugural chair.

    correspondence header caps


    This overwhelmingly popular segment of Media Watch Dog usually works like this. Someone or other thinks it would be a you-beaut idea to write to Nancy’s (male) co-owner about something or other. And Hendo, being a courteous and well-brought up kind of guy, replies. Then, hey presto, the correspondence is published in MWD – much to the delight of its hundreds of thousands of readers.

    There are occasions, however, when Nancy’s (male) co-owner decides to write a polite note to someone or other – who, in turn, believes that a reply is in order. Publication in MWD invariably follows.

    As hundreds of thousands of avid readers are aware, The Guardian Australia’s deputy editor Katharine Murphy put out the following tweet on 6 June 2014 at 4.33 pm – when that issue of MWD was “hot off the press”. Here is Ms Murphy’s tweet: “Without in any way wanting to breach anyone’s human rights or free speech – why do people write emails to Gerard Henderson?” It’s a very good question. Thankfully, not everyone follows Katharine Murphy’s wise counsel. So here we go again.


    The Spectator Australia on 2 August 2014 carried an article by David Day titled “Ming was not a nationalist”. Dr Day (for a doctor he is) once again asserted that in 1941 “Robert Menzies was led to believe that he might be one of the possible replacements for [Winston] Churchill” as prime minister of Britain. Day – who has been banging on about this theory for years – did not say who led Menzies to such an (alleged) impression nor demonstrate that Menzies accepted that such an offer was possible. But Day did get stuck into Anne Henderson (author of Menzies at War), the late Allan Martin (author of Robert Menzies: A Life) and Gerard Henderson (author of Menzies Child: The Liberal Party of Australia) – all of whom have dismissed David Day’s theory on Menzies and Churchill as, well, bunk.

    David Day made much the same point when reviewing Anne Henderson’s Menzies at War for the August 2014 issue of Australian Book Review. Here David Day admitted that he along with his leftist mates Dr Judith Brett and Dr Stuart Macintyre have been criticised in Menzies at War. In view of this, David Day was a surprise choice to review Menzies at War on the taxpayer subsidised Australian Book Review – but, there you go.

    When asked by Gerard Henderson to provide a name of any historian who has come to the same conclusion as David Day on this issue, your man Day could not produce a reference. Here we go.

    Gerard Henderson to David Day – 4 August 2014


    My copy of The Spectator Australia arrived this morning and I have just read your article titled “Ming was not a nationalist”.

    First up, a question. Can you provide a source for any student of 20th century British history in general, or Winston Churchill in particular, who ever said or wrote that Robert Menzies might replace Winston Churchill as prime minister of Britain in the early 1940s?

    In other words, has any historian – apart from yourself – said or written that senior figures in British society were so desperate, circa 1941, that they concluded that there was no-one in the British Isles who could lead Britain and that they would have to get a chap from the Colonies named Menzies to do the job?

    All I want is one or more sources to support your thesis. There is no such source in your book Menzies and Churchill at War which is long on conjecture but devoid of evidence concerning this matter.

    On another issue, I am surprised by your personal venom in your piece. I did not take my “cue” from Allan Martin when I wrote Menzies Child in 1994 and I did not “help” Anne Henderson with her book Menzies at War. I wrote Menzies’ Child myself and Anne wrote Menzies at War herself.

    You present me as a “right wing political commentator” but ignore the fact that Allan Martin’s political background was on the left and in the Australian Labor Party. Yet Martin and I reached the same conclusion concerning your thesis about Menzies and Churchill. We both concluded that there is no evidence to support your theory. Anne Henderson, after doing much more research than Allan or myself on this matter, reached a similar conclusion. Anne Henderson also examined in detail all sources cited by you in Menzies and Churchill at War.

    Also, if Anne and I are such disagreeable right-wing operatives, I am surprised that on no fewer than six occasions you sought – and received – a platform at The Sydney Institute. Your topics were John Curtin (2000), Ben Chifley (2001), The Politics of War: Australia at War 1939-1945 (2003), The Weather Watchers (2008), Andrew Fisher (2008) and Antarctica (2012). In other words, we even gave you a platform at the Institute to discuss your Churchill and Menzies at War thesis if you wished.

    The point is that Anne and I are pluralists who are willing to hear alternative views. This is not the case with your supporters. For example, I was interviewed for the ABC TV docudrama Churchill and Menzies at War which aired on ABC TV in 2008. The producer and lead writer John Moore essentially ran your line and interviewed you along with Judith Brett, who supported your interpretation. However, John Moore censored all of my views and not one word of my interview found its way into the taxpayer funded documentary. In other words, John Moore presented only one view, your left-wing view, to ABC viewers. No conservative historian was allowed to be seen on the documentary taking issue with the themes of your book Menzies and Churchill at War.

    In any event, I look forward to your supplying at least one specific reference where a British historian either said or wrote that Robert Menzies was considered suitable material to replace Winston Churchill as Prime Minister of Britain in 1941. Just one will do.

    Over to you

    Gerard Henderson

    David Day to Gerard Henderson – 7 August 2014

    Hi Gerard

    I’m flat out like a lizard drinking at the moment with a tight publishing deadline. But happy to respond when I have time to do so.

    All the best


    Gerard Henderson to David Day – 7 August 2014


    A surprising response, indeed, to my email of 4 August 2014.

    You have just written two articles – one in the Australian Book Review and the other in The Spectator Australia – declaring that Anne Henderson, Allan Martin and myself are hopelessly wrong concerning Robert Menzies’ intentions in the early 1940s.

    And yet, when I asked you to provide evidence of any scholar who independently supports your view that Robert Menzies was a serious contender to replace Winston Churchill as prime minister of Britain – you indicate that you are too busy to reply and will respond when you have time to do so.

    All I am after is a name, a book/article and a page reference. It should not be too difficult – even for someone who is flat out drinking like a lizard.

    You seem to be arguing that it is okay to make an assertion against three historians in early August and provide the (alleged) evidence by Christmas – this year or perhaps next. Fancy that.

    Best wishes

    Gerard Henderson

    * * * * *

    Alas, at the time MWD went out today, David Day apparently, was still flat out like a lizard drinking and could not stump up the evidence for a theory which he has been proclaiming for a couple of decades. MWD will keep you posted. [Don’t hold your breath. I suspect that your man Day will take at least as long to find his (alleged) evidence as Robert Manne. As you know, the learned professor Manne has declined to collect his $7000 reward if he can produce the evidence he claims he has that you attempted to have him sacked as an Age columnist in 1993 or perhaps 1995 or whatever. See MWD passim ad nauseam – Ed].

    * * * * *


    Dr Scott Burchill (for a doctor he is) is well known to avid MWD readers – due to the fact that, when appearing on the ABC1 News Breakfast program in Melbourne, he invariably combines this gig with a trip to the tip – replete with a full load. And dresses accordingly.

    Dr Burchill (for a doctor he is) has not been on News Breakfast for a couple of weeks. Presumably he has yet to build up a full load on the trolley. It seems that Burchill is an avid MWD reader. [I’m not surprised. Apparently MWD is all the rage at Deakin University, in your own home town of Melbourne, every Friday – after lunch. – Ed]. In any event the learned senior lecturer tweets about MWD and all that.

    This is what Dr Burchill tweeted after reading MWD last Friday. It led to a correspondence stream.

    Scott Burchill Tweet, 1 August 2014

    Gerard Henderson does not think Gaza is occupied. He is ignorant about the subject and wrong.

    Gerard Henderson to Scott Burchill, 7 August 2014

    Dr Burchill

    Quelle surprise that you read Media Watch Dog last Friday. Maybe life moves slowly at Deakin University.

    In your tweet last Friday you wrote “Gerard Henderson does not think Gaza is occupied. He is ignorant about the subject and wrong”.

    My question is this. Which nation or entity occupied Gaza after Israel withdrew its military forces and settlements in 2005? Just a name will do.

    Lotsa love

    Gerard Henderson

    Scott Burchill to Gerard Henderson – 7 August 2014

    Dear Gerard

    So good to hear from you.

    If you want just a name, the answer is Israel. Here is information which fills this gap in your knowledge. There are many sources but they pretty much say the same thing. Below are two:

    [Dr Burchill provided two links. The first to an article by Emeritus Professor John Dugard on the Al Jazeera website. The second from “Gaza Under Siege” is on The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) website – which is a Quaker organisation. Enough said – Ed].

    As you should also know, under the Oslo accords Israel acknowledges that the West Bank and Gaza should be treated as one indivisible unit, hence the ongoing occupation of any part effectively constitutes the occupation of the whole.

    Hope this clears up your misunderstanding.



    Gerard Henderson to Scott Burchill – 7 August 2014

    Dr Burchill

    Interesting to read your view that Israel allowed Hamas to come to government in a land which, according to you, Israel occupies.

    Also it’s surprising that Israel recently invaded a territory which according to you and your two sources it already occupies.

    Keep reading MWD.

    Gerard Henderson

    Scott Burchill to Gerard Henderson – 7 August 2014


    It’s not really that interesting.

    Hamas came to power in Gaza (January 2006) after a carefully monitored freely contested election. Israel, the United States and Europe refused to recognise the result of the democratic ballot and have punished the people of Gaza ever since with an attempted coup, sanctions, a siege, blockade and a brutal occupation – all for voting the wrong and unexpected way. Like the Indonesians in East Timor during 1999, the Israelis “allowed” the vote thinking their preferred clients – in this case Fatah – would win. A big mistake and, presumably, an epic intelligence failure.

    Where have I described the most recent attack on Gaza as a re-occupation or an invasion by Israel? You really must wean yourself off your dependence on IDF talking points and lobby handouts. Pretty sure I have consistently described the last two weeks as an illegal mass slaughter of defenceless civilians.

    Great to be of help.


    Gerard Henderson to Scott Burchill – 8 August 2014


    That’s pretty sloppy – especially for someone who holds the position of senior lecturer at a taxpayer subsidised university. Just a quick cut and paste job – including a reference to a work on the Al Jazeera website.

    In conclusion, I make a few comments:

    ▪ I never said or wrote that you described “the most recent attack on Gaza as a re-occupation or an invasion of Israel”. Clearly you misread by email.

    ▪ As a university academic you should be able to do better than run a guilt-by-association line. You refer to my “dependence on IDF talking points” The fact is that I have never seen an IDF talking point document in my life. Nor do I rely on “lobby handouts” – whatever they might be.

    The fact is that I keep myself as well informed on the topic as possible. I have visited Gaza twice – on the second occasion Gaza was administered by Yasser Arafat. In fact, I stayed close to Arafat’s headquarters and met a number of his senior officials. In January 2013 I visited Ramallah and spoke to senior figures in the Palestinian Authority along with Dr Mustafa Barghouti (who addressed The Sydney Institute some years ago).

    You would improve your argument if you focused on the facts and did not engage in ad-hominem attacks on those who disagree with you.

    Hope you read today’s MWD.

    Best wishes



    An avid MWD reader drew Nancy’s (male) co-owner’s attention to a tweet by Julian Burnside QC last Saturday. Your man Burnside was part of the leftist stack that is the taxpayer subsidised Byron Bay Writers Festival.

    It was another packed out event last weekend as leftists from as far away as Sandalista Central in Melbourne (Fitzroy North) and Sydney (Ultimo) put on their sandals and headed up to Byron Bay to hear lotsa leftists proclaim how their morality is higher than everyone else’s morality and that they read The [Boring] Saturday Paper and so on.

    Julian Burnside was on the program at Byron Bay (of course). And so was Mike (“I’ll pour the gin”) Carlton. After a discussion with your man Carlton, your man Burnside sent out the following tweet. It led to correspondence. Now read on:

    Julian Burnside Tweet – 2 August 2014

    “Mike Carlton promises to annoy Gerard Henderson, at Byron Bay Writers Festival.”

    Gerard Henderson to Julian Burnside – 7 August 2014


    My attention has been drawn to your tweet of last Saturday indicating that Mike Carlton promised to annoy me at the Byron Bay Festival at the weekend.

    I wonder what you meant by this. Mike did not annoy me – indeed I have no idea what he may, or may not, have said at Byron Bay in my absence.

    Please explain.

    Gerard Henderson

    Julian Burnside to Gerard Henderson – 7 August 2014

    Dear Gerard

    I meant nothing by it except that he said those words. I think it is called “live tweeting”.

    After he said it, I am not sure that he actually said anything that would have annoyed you.

    I trust you are well

    Very best wishes



    Julian Burnside AO QC

    The mark of the immature man is that he wants to die nobly for a cause, while the mark of the mature man is that he wants to live humbly for one – Wilhelm Stekel

    Better to be a farmhand on Earth than be king among the dead – Achilles to Odysseus

    Gerard Henderson to Julian Burnside AO QC – 8 August 2014

    Dear Julian

    How wonderful of you to respond to my email – and in such an engaging manner.

    Also, thanks for reminding me of your “AO, QC” status. I like to think of myself as having an AC – as in “Always Courteous”. But, alas, there is no such official recognition.

    By the way, I was impressed with your quotes about humility (at the end of your email). I have heard that you claim to be Australia’s most humble person of the “AO, QC” kind. Well done.

    What a disappointment to learn that Mike Carlton promised the assembled Sandalistas at Byron Bay last Saturday that he would annoy me and then welshed on his promise.

    Your man Carlton is a considerable disappointment. But he still has some admirers. Including, I understand, David Irving in Britain and yourself. Otherwise why else live tweet him?

    Regards to you and yours. Keep morale high.


    Until next time – keep morale high.


    “Gerard Henderson and Nancy are awful human beings.”

    – Alexander White, Twitter, 25 July 2014

    “This is my regularly scheduled “Oh Gerard” tweet for every time he appears on #insiders”

    – Josh Taylor, senior journalist for ZDNet, Twitter, 20 July 2014

    “…that fu-kwitted Gerard “Gollum” Henderson….”

    – Mike (“I’ll pour the gin”) Carlton, via Twitter, 12 July 2014

    “[Gerard Henderson is a] silly prick”

    – Mike (“I’ll pour the gin”) Carlton – tweeted Saturday 27 June 2014 at 4.15 pm, i.e. after lunch

    “If Gerard Henderson had run Beria’s public relations Stalin’s death would have been hidden for a year and Nikita [Khrushchev] and co would have been shot”

    – Laurie Ferguson via Twitter – 22 June 2014 [By-line: Mr Ferguson is a member of the House of Representatives who speaks in riddles.]

    “[Gerard Henderson] is the Eeyore of Australian public life”

    – Mike Seccombe in The [Boring] Saturday Paper – 21 June 2014

    “Without in any way wanting to breach anyone’s human rights or free speech – why do people write emails to Gerard Henderson?”

    – Katharine Murphy, Twitter, Friday 6 June 2014

    “[Gerard Henderson is] an unhinged prick”

    – Mike Carlton, Twitter, Thursday 12 June 2014

    “There’s no sense that Gerard Henderson has any literary credentials at all.”

    – Anonymous comment quoted, highlighted and presumably endorsed by Jason (“I’m a left-leaning luvvie”) Steger, The Age, 31 May 2014

    On boyfriend’s insistence, watching the notorious Gerard Henderson/@Kate_McClymont Lateline segment. GH: What an odd, angry gnome of a man.

    – Benjamin Law, via Twitter, Thursday 17 Apr 2014, 11:21 pm

    Can’t believe I just spent my Thursday evening with a video recap of Gerard Henderson. I’m a f-cking moron.

    – Benjamin Law, via Twitter, Thursday 17 Apr 2014, 11:23 pm

    “[Gerard Henderson is an] unhinged crank”

    – Mike Carlton, via Twitter, Saturday 29 March 2014, 4.34 pm

    Complete stranger comes up to me: that Gerard Henderson’s a xxxxxx.

    – Jonathan Green via Twitter, 8 February 2014

    “[Gerard Henderson is] a sclerotic warhorse, unhelpful to debate, unwilling to think…a wonderful study in delusion…ideologically-constipated.”

    – Erik Jensen, editor of Morry Schwartz’s The Saturday Paper [forthcoming], 23 November 2013

    “The last time Gerard Henderson smiled was in 1978, when he saw a university student being mauled by a pitbull.”

    – Ben Pobjie, via Twitter, 13 October 2013 [Editor’s Note: Mr “Why Can’t I Score an

    Invite on Q&A?” Pobjie is wrong. In fact, the year was 1977 and the dog was a blue-heeler – like Nancy]

    “I think Henderson is seriously ill. There’s enough there for an entire convention of psychiatrists.”

    – Mike (“I’ll pour the gin”) Carlton (after Pre-Dinner Drinks tweet to Jeff Sparrow), 8 October 2013

    “Wrong, you got caught out, off to Gerard Henderson’s Media Watch Dog for you!”

    – Tim Wilson tweet to Jonathan Green and Virginia Trioli, 8 October 2013.

    “Nancy as ever will be the judge”

    – Jonathan Green to Tim Wilson and Virginia Trioli (conceding to the arbitral authority of Nancy), 8 October 2013

    [Gerard Henderson’s analysis of the ABC] is absolutely simplistic.”

    – ABC managing director Mark Scott talking to ABC presenter Jonathan Green on ABC Radio National Drive, 2 May 2013.

    “Oh my God; you’re as bad as Gerard Henderson.”

    – Dr Peter Van Onselen (for a doctor he is), The Contrarians, Sky News, 20 September 2013.

    “The nation mourns Gerard Henderson. He’s in perfect health.”

    – Phillip Adams, via Twitter, 2 July 2013 (favourited by Virginia Trioli)

    “Old Australian saying. ‘He wouldn’t know a tram was up him unless the bell rang’. Wholly appropriate to Gerard Henderson”

    – Phillip Adams, via Twitter, 7 May 2013

    “I said publicly once that I thought that Gerard’s views on the ABC came not from his brain but from his spinal cord”

    – Tim Bowden as told to Phillip (“I was a teenage Stalinist”) Adams, Late Night Live, 11 June 2013 – Queen’s Birthday Public Holiday.

    “Gerard Henderson is a crank”

    – David Marr at the 2013 Sydney Writers’ Festival (as reported by Mike Carlton)

    “The great Australian media nutter Gerard [Henderson is an] ungrateful bastard”.

    – Mark Latham, Q&A, 10 June 2013.

    “[Gerard Henderson] is a moral dwarf …Gerard, pull your head in”

    – Professor Sinclair Davidson, 24 April 2013.

    “[Henderson] You are mad. In the 18th century you would have been caged, with the mob invited to poke you with sticks.”

    – Mike Carlton, 5.23 pm (Gin & Tonic Time) 25 March 2013

    “I like to think of Gerard [Henderson] as the Inspector Clouseau of forensic journalism”

    – David Marr, ABC News 24 The Drum, 21 March 2013.

    “[Media Watch Dog is] not a moan, more of a miserable dribble”

    – Peter Munro, 21 March 2013

    “You are a fool, Henderson, a malicious and mendacious piece of shit… Now F_ck off”

    – Mike Carlton, 11 March 2013 (Hangover Time).

    “[Gerard Henderson is] an internet pest”

    – Dr (for a doctor he is) Jeff Sparrow, 26 February 2013.

    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.