GERARD HENDERSON’S MEDIA WATCH DOG – ISSUE NO. 286
11 SEPTEMBER 2015
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.
- THE CHASER BOYS (AVERAGE AGE 391/2) RETURN
- CLARKE & DAWE – BORING ON
- WENDY HARMER’S TONY ABBOTT “SCOOP”
- JASON STEGER’S FOOLISH ERROR
- THE LAIR OF LIVERPOOL’S MEDIA U-TURN
- COMRADE TOOHEY – BACK TO THE NATIONAL TIMES SOVIET
- STEP FORWARD CATHERINE LIVINGSTONE FOR Q&A HONESTY
- FITZ PUTS HIS BANDANNA ON; FITZ TAKES HIS BANDANNA OFF & TURNS THE REPUBLICAN DEBATE ALL ABOUT
- PAUL SHEEHAN’S 180 DEGREE TURN ON ISRAEL
- BISHOP GEOFFREY ROBINSON FAILS TO FULFILL THE ABC’S PROPHECIES
Beyond re-stating his well-known hostility toward George Pell, Geoffrey Robinson did not provide one scrap of evidence which even implied that, when Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, Pell mishandled cases of child sexual assault committed by priests and brothers.
Robinson’s essential criticism of Pell was that, when Archbishop of Melbourne, George Pell set up the Melbourne Response (to handle clerical abuse) before Robinson and his colleagues set up Towards Healing (to handle clerical abuse). Robinson acknowledged that Pell moved ahead of his fellow archbishops and bishops under pressure from (then) Victorian premier Jeff Kennett. Robinson criticised Pell’s pre-emptive action but did not say what he would have done in such a circumstance.
Fr. Robinson’s testimony discredited Francis Sullivan’s claim on Radio National Breakfast that “Bishop Robinson led the charge” to deal with clerical child abuse in the Catholic Church. Pell acted before his colleagues – within a hundred days of being appointed Archbishop of Melbourne. Towards Healing was set up after the commencement of the Melbourne Response.
The matter of George Pell’s role in the Catholic Church in Australia was not raised in Geoffrey Robinson’s testimony. Philippa McDonald may be ignorant of this matter – but in Australia George Pell only ever had responsibility for the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne (1996-2001) and the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney (2001-2014). George Pell has never claimed to speak on behalf of the Australian Hierarchy.
Contrary to McDonald’s prediction, Geoffrey Robinson had nothing to say about discussions with the Papal Nuncio in Australia concerning clerical child abuse – in Canberra or at St Mary’s Cathedral. However, Fr Robinson did describe talking about this matter with a senior Vatican official in Rome in 2001 – but did not tell the Royal Commission why he had not disclosed the conversation previously.
- MIKE SECCOMBE & GERARD HENDERSON: CONCERNING SNEERING SECULARISM IN THE [BORING] SATURDAY PAPER
I note that you have now set yourself up as judge and jury with respect to how Christians should “act in accordance with the best tenets of their faith”. This seems somewhat gratuitous advice. But, then, you are a lifelong journalist.
You should be able to do better than abuse – your reference to “`christian’ [sic] obscurantists” refers. I have no idea which Christians you are referring to and how such unidentified individuals may be engaging in obscurantism. Apart, obviously, from the fact that they do not agree with you.
Anyone who looks dispassionately at this correspondence will note that – contrary to your undocumented assertion – I did not engage in a “rant”. Nor were my views in any sense obscure. Rather my comments were considered – and courteous.
When Julia Gillard told Australians that she was a committed atheist, I was not at all fussed. I wondered about the political wisdom of her declaration but admired her intellectual conviction. However, when Andrew Hastie told the Western Australian Liberal Party that he was a committed Christian, you decided that this was a reason for a sneering piece on Page One of The Saturday Paper. The essential problem with sneering secularists like you turns on your evident intolerance.