GERARD HENDERSON’S MEDIA WATCH DOG – ISSUE NO. 351

3 March 2017

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. Between November 1997 and October 2015 “Gerard Henderson’s Media Watch” was published as part of The Sydney Institute Quarterly. In March 2009 Gerard Henderson’s Media Watch Dog blog commenced publication.


  • Stop Press: Peter Reith’s Know-Nothing Moment
  • Can You Bear It? Lesley Parker’s Trump Obsession; Gretel Killeen’s Trump Howler; Dr Tucker’s Trump Phobia as Told to 7.30’s Leigh Sales; Mark Carnegie Beats a Fantasy Drum with His Advice to Malcolm Turnbull
  • Media Scoop: Hendo’s Chance Meeting with Mark Baillie of the Taxpayer Subsidised US[Less] Studies Centre
  • The ABC & Pederasty: An Update – with a Revised Richard Downing Scoreboard
  • New Feature: Report From Hendo’s Frontline featuring Alex Malley’s Melbourne Airport Mugshot
  • The ABC on Managing Director Guthrie’s Watch – Tiger Webb’s ABC Language Entity is no Remedy for Super Howlers
  • A Reading from the Green Left Gospel According to Paul Bongiorno: In Which Bonge Lectures Business Sans Business Experience
  • Documentation: The Media & The Royal Commission – Starring Expert Witness Christopher Geraghty
  • Correspondence: The Australian Republican Movement Helps Out (Again)

STOP PRESS

KNOW-NOTHING PETER REITH PUTS UP HIS HAND TO LEAD THE VICTORIAN LIBERAL PARTY

What a stunning performance by one-time politician and one-time Fairfax Media columnist Peter Reith on The Bolt Report last night. Your man Reith, who is also a Sky News presenter and paid contributor, is campaigning to dislodge Michael Kroger as president of the Victorian Liberal Party on April Fool’s Day.

Mr Bolt asked Mr Reith how many seats the Coalition needed to defeat Labor at the next State election in Victoria. He did not know. Then Mr Bolt asked Mr Reith how many seats in the Victorian Legislative Assembly the Liberal Party currently holds. Ditto. Then Mr Bolt asked Mr Reith to name the deputy Liberal Party leader in the Victorian Legislative Council. Your man Reith didn’t have a clue – and suggested that the president of the Victorian Liberal Party did not need to know about such matters.

And yet Peter Reith reckons that he is fit-for-purpose to lead the Liberal Party of Australia in Victoria. Fair Dinkum. [Perhaps you should have placed this piece in MWD’s highly popular “Can You Bear It?” segment. Just a thought – MWD Ed].


CAN YOU BEAR IT?

  • UTS ACADEMIC LESLEY PARKER’S TRUMP OBSESSION – WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM THE NEW REPUBLIC

The (apparently) non-terminal condition of Trump-phobia still seems to be afflicting the ABC. How else to explain the comment of former journalist and now UTS Business School academic Lesley Parker during the “Newspapers” segment on ABC News Breakfast yesterday?

Commenting on a report in Thursday’s Australian that Barack and Michelle Obama have signed a books deal with Penguin Random House estimated to be worth US$60 million – Lesley Parker could not refrain from mentioning Donald J. Trump. Despite the fact that the United States president was not named in The Australian report, which was sourced from AP. Let’s go to the transcript:

Virginia Trioli: Is this a package deal for Barack and Michelle Obama?

Lesley Parker: Yes, but even if you divide those in half – that’s still a lot of money.

Paul Kennedy: Can you give us any context of other political books former presidents have – ?

 Lesley Parker: Well, Bill Clinton got $US 15 million. So basically, divided into two – they’re still getting double what he got.

 Virginia Trioli: Inflation, come on.

 Paul Kennedy: Wow, yeah, yeah, yeah.

 Lesley Parker: George W [Bush] got $US 10 million and Hillary [Clinton] got $US 8 million. And what’s really interesting is that I understand that it’s more money than President Trump has ever got for any of his books. So, he’ll be really, really upset.

Yes, really. Really, really upset. It’s not clear precisely what students are taught at the University of Technology, Sydney. However, since President Trump is only six weeks into his first term, it’s unlikely that publishers would have approached him – and/or Melania Trump – for a book deal. So he really has nothing to be jealous about right now.

Nevertheless, Ms Parker reckons that President Trump will be really, really upset with the Obamas two-for-the-price-of-two deal. Strangely, this is precisely what Alex Shephard wrote in the left-wing New Republic magazine online on Wednesday, viz:

The money is not the most important thing about this deal. The most important thing is that it is definitely exponentially more money than Donald Trump got for Crippled America, or any of his other books. And that means that this deal will make Donald Trump extremely mad.

So, as the cliché goes, The New Republic got a dose of Trump-phobia on Wednesday which travelled across the Pacific and brought down Lesley Parker on the taxpayer funded public broadcaster the very next day. The only difference is that Mr Shephard said that President Trump would be “extremely mad” with the Obama books contract whereas Ms Parker said President Trump would be “very, very upset”. Can You Bear It?

  • GRETEL KILLEEN ON THE LIES (OF OTHERS)

While on the topic of Trump-phobia, did anyone read the – all but unreadable – column by comedian Gretel Killeen in the Daily Telegraph last Saturday? Maybe not. In any event, it was all about Ms Killeen’s conversation with a taxi driver named Kev – why not? – about the (alleged) bad behaviour of two out of three of his passengers on one particular day.

Well, that’s how the column ended. It started with Gretel Killeen banging on about how children lie to their mothers. The message of the column seems to have been – if message there was – that Kev the taxi driver may have told his passenger Ms Killeen a few whoppers about other passengers. How about that?

For what it’s worth, the column was headed: “The sad truth is most of us are now telling lies”. Interesting. Is this the very same Gretel Killeen who declared on the truly boring The B Team – presented by Peter Berner – on Sky News in January – that Donald J Trump did not even know what Brexit was? This despite the fact that Mr Trump had gone to Britain in 2016 and supported Nigel Farage and his Brexit cause. Can You Bear It?

  • THE ANU’S DR TUCKER SEES HOPE 750,000 YEARS AWAY FROM PRESIDENT TRUMP

Thanks for the avid reader who drew MWD’s attention to the 7.30 interview conducted by Leigh Sales with Australian National University astrophysicist Brad Tucker on 23 February 2017. This is how Ms Sales introduced the segment:

Leigh Sales, Presenter: Scientists are thrilled by news announced overnight of the discovery of a new solar system, containing seven planets orbiting a star. It’s 40 light years from earth, but what’s notable is that some of the planets have characteristics that could be compatible with life as we know it. Joining me live from Canberra is Australian National University astrophysicist Brad Tucker. Good to have you with us again. The science community seems pretty excited about this. What’s so exciting about it?

Dr Brad Tucker, Astrophysicist, ANU: Well the fact that we could have planets we could potentially live on. But, more than that, it’s one entire solar system with potentially seven places to live. If you look at our solar system, we have earth and other kind of boring planets. Here we got seven awesome ones. So it’s seven for the price of one.

The interview went on – and on. Dr Tucker (for a doctor he is) told Ms Sales that it would only take about 750,000 years for a person to get to this new solar system. But even so, it could be worth the effort. Let’s go to the transcript:

Leigh Sales: So you said there are seven planets that have got some qualities that could make them habitable for humans. What are those qualities?

Dr Brad Tucker: Firstly, you don’t have Donald Trump as President.

How funny is that, and how obsessive? Can You Bear It?

  • MARK CARNEGIE’S FLAWED CRYSTAL-BALL ADVICE TO PM TURNBULL

What a stunning performance by financial consultant Mark Carnegie on The Drum last Monday.

Your man Carnegie is rapidly emerging as the ABC’s go-to businessman figure since he supports many of the causes that are fashionable at the ABC. Like the republic and same-sex marriage and Aboriginal recognition and so on.

Last Monday on The Drum, Mark Carnegie advised Prime Minister Turnbulll to “find a way to unify us all”. Easy, eh? His only specific advice was that the Coalition should not join Pauline Hanson. But Mr Carnegie did not say how the PM can unify all Australians if he excludes One Nation.

Later on Mr Carnegie had this to say:

Mark Carnegie: Everyone knows what his [Malcolm Turnbull’s] agenda is and that is why he had such high political polls. You know, 70 per cent of people want same sex marriage, 70 per cent of people want Indigenous recognition in the Constitution. A huge number of people, when asked intelligently, want action on climate change and a similar number want the Republic. It was clear what Malcolm stood for. [But] he just had to do a deal with the devil. He did a deal with the devil.

What a load of absolute tosh. It’s likely, but not certain, that a same sex marriage plebiscite would win majority support in Australia. However, it is most unlikely that a referendum to make Australia a republic would win a majority of votes in a majority of states. Likewise with the proposal that Aborigines be recognised in the Constitution. Moreover, the evidence suggests that Australians are far from united on how to tackle climate change.

The suggestion that Malcolm Turnbull did a deal with the devil overlooks the fact that government is difficult. Mr Carnegie has never worked in government or been deeply involved in politics. Yet seems to hold the view that he could run the nation from The Drum’s studio in the ABC’s Sydney headquarters in Ultimo. Can You Bear It?


MEDIA SCOOP

IN WHICH HENDO MEETS – WAIT FOR IT- THE US[LESS] STUDIES CENTRE CHAIRMAN MARK BAILLIE

There was an enormous response late last year with the introduction of MWD’s brand new “Media Scoop” segment. This involved Gerard Henderson’s account of his per-chance conversations with ABC chairman Jim Spigelman and author/poet Dr Lisa Gorton (for a doctor she is). See MWD Issues 342 and 343 respectively.

Consequently, there has been a huge demand from avid readers for more such scoops. Being a courteous kind of guy, Hendo is always happy to respond positively to a courteous request – circumstances permitting.

It so happened that Nancy’s (male) co-owner briefly met a certain Mark Baillie who happens to be chairman at the taxpayer subsidised United States Studies Centre at the taxpayer subsidised University of Sydney. The (friendly) encounter took place at Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s official lunch for visiting Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the Sydney Convention Centre on Wednesday 22 February. The conversation went something like this:

Mark Baillie: Hello. I’m Mark Baillie. It’s nice to meet you. I’m chairman of The United States Studies Centre.

Gerard Henderson: Are you? As you may or may not know, I’ve been making some criticisms of the US Studies Centre in my Media Watch Dog blog which comes out on Fridays – after lunch, of course. I call it the US[Less] Studies Centre.

Mark Baillie: Yes, I know.

Gerard Henderson: It’s pretty useless. Every academic at your centre predicted that Hillary Clinton would defeat Donald Trump last November. Every one.

Mark Baillie: I would like to catch up with you sometime and brief you about what the Centre is doing. There are many other areas of research beyond commenting on US politics.

Gerard Henderson: Maybe. But that’s what gets USSC staff on the media. The CEO Simon Jackman, Brendon O’Connor and David Smith are forever banging on about American politics on the ABC, Sky News and so on. Dr Jackman admitted to Sky News after the election that not one member of the USSC staff supports Donald Trump. Not one.

Mark Baillie: We should talk about this. As I said, the USSC does research across a wide range of issues.

Gerard Henderson: Okay. But the Centre is like the ABC in that everyone agrees with everyone else in an anti-Trump kind of way. Why, Dr O’Connor even wrote an article for Fairfax Media newspapers, before the November presidential election, where he stated that Trump exhibited all the attributes of the “Ugly American”. Every single one. How unprofessional is that? This is just propaganda taught to students who pay good money for hopeless one-sided analysis.

Mark Baillie: Would you like to meet Simon Jackman? He’s over there.

Gerard Henderson: Not right now.

At this stage Hendo was tempted to break his vow never to have a Gin & Tonic before 5.30. In the evening, that is. He resisted the temptation after a few quick prayers to the Patron Saint of Potential Alcoholics.

Meanwhile, it’s timely to report that recent guests at the US Studies Centre include Bob Inglis. He is a former – yes, former – US Republican Party congressman who happens to be a vehement opponent of President Trump’s position on climate change. This is consistent with what appears to be the USSC’s view that the only Republican worth hearing is an anti-Trump Republican. The US Studies Centre hosted Mr Inglis in co-operation with the out-and-proud leftist think tank The Australia Institute which is staffed by many a past, present or future Greens operative.

Then, at the end of June, the USSC is sponsoring a visit to Australia by Dana Milbank – the Washington Post columnist who is among the leading Trump-haters in the US – along with his partner [Don’t men have wives any more – MWD Editor] Anna Greenberg (of Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research). All of this primarily paid for by the Australian taxpayer.

Gerard Henderson opposed the decision of John Howard to donate $25 million of taxpayer funds to establish the US Studies Centre in the first place. He predicted that it would end up being stacked by left-wing academics and that it would continue to ask for even more taxpayers’ money to fund its one-sided program. And so it has come to pass – as the saying goes. Or went.

THE ABC & PEDERASTY: AN UPDATE

Addressing the ninth day of what was called the Royal Commission Into Institutional Responses To Child Sexual Abuse’s “Catholic Wrap” on 17 February 2017, Counsel Assisting Gail Furness SC made the following point with respect to child sexual abuse in Catholic institutions.

Between January 1980 and February 2015, 4,445 people alleged incidents of child sexual abuse in 4,765 claims. The vast majority of claims alleged abuse that started in the period 1950 to 1989 inclusive. The largest proportion of first alleged incidents of child sexual abuse, 29 per cent, occurred in the 1970s.

In other words, the decade of the 1970s was a period when the crime of pedophilia – mainly pederasty – was at its height in the Catholic Church. As MWD readers are aware, in 1975 ABC presenter Richard Neville (a self-confessed pedophile) presented a program on the ABC Radio’s Lateline program in which he sympathetically interviewed three pederasts and one or two of their victims. The ABC did not report the sex offenders to NSW Police at the time – and the public broadcaster has never adopted a duty of care towards the pederasts’ victims.

Indeed, on 19 July 1975 the then ABC Chairman Professor Richard Downing (1915-1975) wrote a letter to the Sydney Morning Herald defending Mr Neville’s program and calling all Australians to understand the urges of pederasts. In the same issue of the SMH, Professor Downing was quoted as saying that “in general, men will sleep with young boys”. This statement, made by Professor Downing in his capacity as ABC chairman, has never been renounced by any of his successors – including Jim Spigelman, whose attention was specifically drawn to this issue.

So now it’s time to update MWD’s Downing/Spigelman Scoreboard


NEW FEATURE:

REPORT FROM HENDO’S FRONT LINE

Due to popular demand, this new segment will trace Gerard Henderson’s life as he encounters the ongoing consequences of The Fall in this our very own Vale of Tears.

Arriving in Melbourne last Saturday night – for Insiders on the morning after the night before – this is the very first image Hendo saw on exiting his Virgin Airways flight. A picture of Alex Malley who – shock horror – was suspended by the late Rod West from Trinity Grammar in Sydney around the time Moses was a boy. See MWD Issues 344 and 349.

These days it’s all but impossible to visit an airport in Australia without confronting your man Malley’s self-promotion for his piss-poor book The Naked CEO – which reveals that all those decades ago he was suspended from school. [Only a suspension? Couldn’t the powers-that-be at Trinity during Mr West’s time as principal have managed a dose of, say, capital punishment for a good cause? – MWD Editor]

On confronting The Thought of Mr Malley on the hoarding, Hendo got frightfully stressed. Fearing a dose of post-traumatic stress disorder, he headed to the bar for three triple Gin & Tonics. It worked. When returning to Sydney next morning, Hendo wore dark glasses as he moved towards embarkation. That also worked.

Your man Malley is always banging on about the late Roderick West. In view of this, avid readers may be interested in what Mr West said about Master Malley in his posthumously published memoirs The Heart Of Education (Salt & Light Publishing, 2017).

The answer is Zip. Absolutely Zip. Thank God.


THE ABC ON MANAGING DIRECTOR GUTHRIE’S WATCH

Thanks to Mark Latham’s Outsiders program for drawing attention to the existence of the ABC Language entity headed by the ambitiously named Tiger Webb.

The Lair of Liverpool reckons that this is a bit of a, well, wank. And MWD concurs. An analysis of Mr Webb’s Twitter feed suggests that he is not the most eloquent of language stylists. But, there you go.

MWD’s principal objection to ABC Language is that the taxpayer funded public broadcaster could spend its money more usefully. Like making sure that Aunty’s supers are accurate. Unlike the following taken from ABC1 over recent times:

Er, no. Not yet. That’s the leftist Australia Institute’s – and regular ABC guest – Ben Oquist.

Er, no. That’s Opposition leader Bill Shorten.

Er, no. Warren Entsch is not a minister in Malcolm Turnbull’s Coalition government.

Time to drop ABC Language and set up, perhaps, ABC Supers (i.e. headings).


A READING FROM THE GREEN-LEFT GOSPEL ACCORDING TO BONGE

When John Howard was prime minister, the Prime Minister’s Office regarded Channel 10’s Paul Bongiorno as the most left-wing journalist in the commercial arm of the Canberra Parliamentary Press Gallery. So it came as no surprise that, when Bonge became a mere contributing editor for Channel 10, the Conservative Free Zone that is the ABC snapped him up for political commentary on ABC Radio National Breakfast.

These days Paul Bongiorno has become a green/left ranter – as this tweet which he sent out (after dinner) on Monday night attests:

So there you have it. Your man Bonge now presents as an expert on employment. But has he ever employed anyone? Apparently not.

According to his own entry in Who’s Who in Australia 2017, Paul Bongiorno was educated at St Patrick’s College in Ballarat and, per courtesy of the Catholic Church, at the Pontifical Urban University in Rome. He subsequently became a priest in Victoria. He left the priesthood and entered the journalistic profession.

As far as MWD can work out, your man Bonge has always been in receipt of a stipend or a salary. He appears never to have run a business or made up a pay package for an employee. Consequently, he has no idea about how labour costs impinge on business costs.

Put simply, Bonge does not appear to understand that the owner of a small business in, say, Burnie or Mildura or Nowra can find that paying up to and over double time to an employee on a Sunday is simply unaffordable.

If Bonge’s theory is correct, then why not increase the Sunday penalty rates to, say, four times the current minimum hourly rate and increase salaries throughout the land?


DOCUMENTATION

THE MEDIA AND THE ROYAL COMMISSION – WITH RESPECT TO DR CHRISTOPHER GERAGHTY

What was called the Royal Commission Into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse’s three week “Catholic Wrap” concluded last Friday. MWD was primarily interested in the appearance as a witness before the Royal Commission of Christopher James Geraghty – since he has made an appearance in MWD previously. See MWD Issue 174.

Dr Geraghty told the Royal Commission that he joined the Catholic St Columba’s Seminary in Springwood (NSW) at age 12 in 1951 and that he had covered his experience as a seminarian in his memoirs. He was subsequently ordained a priest and worked in the parish of Cronulla before returning to seminary life in Springwood as an academic from 1968-1972. For the record, Christopher Geraghty also taught at St Patrick’s College, Manly. He left the priesthood at age 38 and became a barrister and, subsequently, a judge.

On Monday 13 February 2017, at the invitation of the Royal Commission, Dr Geraghty spoke of his experience as a seminarian and a priest:

I was sitting there [Springwood] as a junior person [i.e. a priest on the academic staff] and knew a few things – very little. But I knew a few things. I knew that there was one priest who was visiting a student and having sex with him, taking him in to Springwood to the pub, getting him drunk and then taking him to a motor inn. But I was just sitting there and I was bound by the internal forum about all of this, you see. So I couldn’t say anything about this.

Dr Geraghty was somewhat more frank when interviewed by Linda Morris for a profile which was published in the Sydney Morning Herald on 14 July 2012 – following the publication of Geraghty’s book Dancing With The Devil : A Journey from the Pulpit to the Bench. The discussion took place over a beer at the Royal Ascot Hotel in Paddington. Ms Morris reported that:

Geraghty has his own confession to make, admitting he never passed on to police or to his superiors information about a sexual relationship between a well-known priest and one of the seminarians in his care [at St Columba’s Seminary]. There were extenuating circumstances.

Geraghty was sexually naive and the student spoke to him on condition of silence. Geraghty advised him to confront the priest, Father Vince Kiss, and to end the relationship, which had been going on since he had been about 12, and assisted him in “his search for a new life”. The two later renewed their friendship when the victim, a headmaster at a state school, came forward to testify against Kiss.

“I don’t feel remorseful about it. I don’t feel guilty, but I do feel diminished. I’m regretful I was not more worldly wise, I wasn’t more informed, I wasn’t more educated; that I was never aware of the possibility that priests could be paedophiles as they were; and how to deal with it. If I’d known then what I know now and dealt with it aggressively, Vince [Kiss] maybe would not have interfered with a number of other boys and caused them untold trauma.”

In spite of this “mea culpa” in July 2012, Christopher Geraghty went on ABC Radio Mornings with Linda Mottram on 13 March 2013 where the following exchange took place:

Linda Mottram : The big issue in everybody’s mind – Catholic or not – around the world is the sex abuse scandals and how the Church has, or has not, handled it. Suggestions that the Church is moving forward on this. But Chris, I think you would argue that it’s made very little progress. Would you?

Christopher Geraghty : Look, I think that it’s been a disaster really. The present Pope [Benedict XVI] did very little…He had the opportunity to do it and he did very little. And when he was the offsider to Pope John Paul II, he did very little then.

So there you have it. In March 2013, Dr Geraghty said that the Catholic Church’s response to child sexual abuse had been a disaster – and specifically criticised Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI for not acting against clerical offenders. Later, in February 2017, Dr Geraghty provided evidence to the Royal Commission about the formation of priests and the errors made by Catholic authorities in handling pedophilia.

However, during the hearings of the Royal Commission, Dr Geraghty was not asked about his failure to report to NSW Police that he knew that Vince Kiss was a pedophile at a time when such a report could have stopped subsequent offending by Kiss. And Christopher Geraghty did not volunteer this information to Justice Peter McClellan, the Royal Commission’s chairman, during the hearings.

Nor was Dr Geraghty asked to explain to the Royal Commission how it came to pass that, when a judge of the NSW District Court in 2009, he sentenced a 23 year old man, with a long criminal record, who raped a four year girl, to a two-year suspended sentence. According to Caroline Overington’s report in The Weekend Australian on 7 March 2009 – the (then) Judge Geraghty in his judgment exhibited more sympathy for the male rapist than for his four year-old female victim. Indeed, so far, the Royal Commission has not enquired into the response of judicial institutions to child sexual abuse.

Needless to say, the ABC and Fairfax Media – which have extensively covered alleged covering up of pedophile priests by Church authorities – did not question Dr Geraghty about what he told SMH reporter Linda Mottram in July 2012 and why he did not proffer a similar disclosure to the Royal Commission in February 2017.


CORRESPONDENCE

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 Gerard Henderson 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 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. There are, alas, some occasions where Hendo sends a polite missive but does not receive the courtesy of a reply. Nevertheless, publication of this one-sided correspondence still takes place. For the record – and in the public interest, of course.

As MWD 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 – not even Ms Murphy herself (See MWD Issue 297).

  • THE AUSTRALIAN REPUBLICAN MOVEMENT’S SANDY BIAR AND GERARD HENDERSON re ARM MEMBERSHIP, THE RED BANDANNAED ONE & CARDINAL PELL

As avid readers will be aware, Hendo – in his capacity as a member of the Australian Republican Movement, receives lotsa correspondence from ARM chairman Peter FitzSimons and his lackeys. Having graduated from Nancy’s Courtesy Classes, Nancy’s (male) co-owner always replies to ARM missives. But, alas, such courtesy is not reciprocated. And now read on about the very latest ARM/Gerard Henderson exchange.

Sandy Biar (Australian Republican Movement) to Gerard Henderson – 14 February 2017

Dear Gerard,

We noticed that you haven’t renewed your membership with the Australian Republic Movement – we’re sorry to see you go! Before you do, we’re hoping you might be able to spare 30 seconds to tell us where we went wrong.

The campaign has been building from strength-to-strength, with support for a republic now at levels not seen since 1999. However, we can’t take the next step towards becoming a republic without supporters like you. We’d like to hear from you how we can do a better job for our members.

Thanks again for your support for an Australian republic.

All the best,

Sandy Biar

National Campaign Manager

Gerard Henderson to Sandy Biar – 3 March 2017

Dear Sandy

Thanks for your email of 14 February 2017. In response to your query about why I have not renewed my membership of the Australian Republican Movement – I make the following comments.

1.Alas, the ARM – from its chairman Peter FitzSimons down – has treated me with a degree of discourtesy. Over many months, I have offered to donate $20,000 to the ARM if only Fitz will provide the address of the “$30 million mansion in Rome” where he alleges Cardinal George Pell resides.

Your man FitzSimons first made this claim in his Fairfax Media Sun Herald column on 24 May 2015. In modern parlance, Fitz’s claim about Cardinal Pell’s “$30 million mansion in Rome” is either – horror – FAKE NEWS or your man FitzSimons is just too lazy to provide a fellow ARM member with an address. The only other possibility is that the ARM does not need an extra $20,000.

2.Whenever I have written to the ARM with this most generous offer – with a copy to your chairman – my correspondence has been ignored. Such discourtesy is not the way in which to build a mass movement capable of making an Aussie like Fitz Australia’s head of state.

3.As to your request as to how the ARM can do a better job for its members – my advice is exactly the same as provided in my earlier (unacknowledged) correspondence. Namely, get rid of The Red Bandannaed One and get a new chairman who does not spend so much time attacking fellow Republicans (like George Pell) who happen to be conservatives and choose not to wear bandannas of any colour.

Bon voyage

Gerard Henderson


Until next time.


Endorsements of MWD

One of my bête noires is Gerard Henderson. And I try not to let him provoke me. I turn the other cheek – both facial and posterial. But this week he said something which just made me furious.

Phillip Adams on Late Night Live, 20 September 2016

If Gerard Henderson is on #insiders tomorrow I’m going to start drinking at 9.01 am

– @annalise108 via Twitter, 30 Jul 2016, 6:30 PM

“[Gerard Henderson is a] whining rodent”

– Bruce Haigh, former diplomat and regular ABC panelist

“[Gerard Henderson is a] cretinous turd”

– Rohan Connolly via Twitter – 12 July 2016

“It’s always nice to be mentioned in your pedantic, predictable and self-absorbed Friday web rant”

– Stephen Mayne, via email, Bastille Day, 2016

My oh my. Poor, blithering Gerard “Gollum” Henderson will be incandescent with rage after that Media Watch. The silly prick.

Mike Carlton via Twitter, 15 Feb 2016, 9:44 PM

Gerard: You are hopeless…

– David Marr, 12 February 2016

ABC is a weakened and flawed institution for sure but it is a vital balance to ranting prejudices of Gerard Henderson’s boss@rupertmurdoch

Quentin Dempster via Twitter, 10 Jan 2016,

Poor mad Gerard is obsessed. I expect he had an unhappy childhood, always the last to be chosen…

Mike Carlton via Twitter, 25 Oct 2015, 3:27 AM

Sometimes I think of Gerard Henderson like a Japanese holdout, lost in the jungles of Borneo, still fighting the war 20 years after it ended

– Erik Jensen,via Twitter, 16 Oct 2015, 4:50 PM

Gérard Henderson brain missing. Small reward

– Phillip Adams, via Twitter, 10 Oct 2015, 11:16 AM

I’ve been shot at by the Viet Cong. I once met Gerard Henderson. I can take any shit thrown at me…

Mike Carlton via Twitter, 9:22 PM – 9 Sep 2015

Gerard. You are an idiot #insiders

Bevan Shields via Twitter, 9:46 AM, 23 August 2015

“[Gerard Henderson is a] professional filing cabinet”

– Leftist scribbler Jeff Sparrow, Crikey, 13 August 2015

Leaving the house to avoid listening to GHenderson on @774melbourne

– Jonathan Green via Twitter, 31 July 2015

“gerard henderson trending on twitter, omg [looks out window, where the sun is eclipsed and the sky blood-red] oh yeah that makes sense”

– Adam Brereton via Twitter, 31 July 2015

Gerard Henderson on @891adelaide right now & I find myself shouting at my radio. What a morning”

– Louise Pascale via Twitter, 31 July 2015

“oh hell why is Gerard Henderson trending? Has boredom become the new black.”

– MNihilon via Twitter, 31 July 2015

Told I made the late Gerard Henderson’s little blog today. Read it. What a rancorous, nauseating, humourless little turd he is.

– Mike Carlton via Twitter during Gin & Tonic Time on 12 June 2015.

“On Sunday before Insiders…I was giving you a rich and full account of what a weird shit I think you are…”

– David Marr to Gerard Henderson, 1 June 2015

To #swf2015 this morning. Sunlit harbour, fabulous crowds radiating civility. And no Gerard Henderson ! It doesn’t get any better.

– Mike Carlton, via Twitter, 1:48 PM – 21 May 2015

Gerard Henderson’s friday self-harm update is here

– Adam Brereton, via Twitter, May 15, 2015

[Gerard Henderson’s Media Watch Dog is] batshit mad.

– Guy Rundle in Crikey, 14 May 2015

I’m in the sort of mood that if I saw Gerard Henderson in the street I’d hit him with his own umbrella

– Ben Pobjie, via Twitter, 8 May 2015

It’s a glorious day when Gerard Henderson has a go at you

– Adam Gartrell, via Twitter, 8 May 2015

Meeting of Gerard Henderson Appreciation Society tonight Sydney Opera House phone booth

– Phillip Adams, via Twitter, 28 April 2015, 1.36 pm (after lunch).

“Gerard’s condescension levels high on #insiders this morning”

– Lenore Taylor, via Twitter, 22 February 2015

“Gerard Henderson and David Marr are on #Insiders this week. Like a political Felix and Oscar.”

– Mark Scott via Twitter 19 February 2015 at 1.10 pm

“I once called Gerard Henderson `a complete f%^wit’. I deeply regret that. I was being much too harsh on f%^wits.”

– Malcolm Farr via Twitter 14 February 2015 at 10:14 am

Oh Gerard. You total clown.”

– Jonathan (“Proudly the ABC’s Sneerer-in-Chief”) Green on Twitter, Friday 3 October 2014, 4.31 pm [Mr Green must be an obsessive avid reader to respond so soon. – Ed]

“Good morning. All the gooder for being attacked (for thousandth time) by silly Gerard in the Oz”

– Phillip Adams via Twitter, 27 September 2014

“What troubles me most is that he [Gerard Henderson] shows such low journalistic standards, yet he is politically quite influential. He is often on Insiders. It’s hard to see why: he comes across as a crank.”

– Kate Durham as told to Crikey, 16 September 2014

“The unhinged but well spoken Gerard Henderson….”

– Bob Ellis, Table Talk blog, 10 August 2014

“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