GERARD HENDERSON’S MEDIA WATCH DOG

ISSUE – NO. 461

26 July 2019

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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.

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  • Stop Press- ABC finally reports Bob Brown’s view on windfarms as bird mass murderers; Derryn Hinch lets Zali Steggall off the hook on the Liberal Party

  • New Feature: A Jane Caro Moment- In which 3 year old Alfie agrees with grandma about the link between Trump/Johnson/Morrison and Dinosaurs

  • Can You Bear It? Tony Walker’s Boris Johnson Confusion; Dani Hunter on the ‘failure’ of Donald Trump and Boris Johnson; Q&A’s Tony Jones and the strange case of the Silence of the Sheilas; CBD’s fantasy about Australia’s Ambassador to the Holy See

  • Five Paws Award- Step forward Phil Coorey on badly built apartments

  • New Feature: Jackie’s Take on New Zealand; Episode 1- Where even the penguins are socialists

  • Media Fool of the Week- Peter FitzSimons’ fake news re New Zealand politics and Jacinda Ardern

  • Your Taxes at Work- Marieke Hardy’s Melbourne Writers’ Festival Another Leftist Stack with an emphasis on Love

  • Nancy’s Courtesy Classes- Advice to the discourteous Bonge re how to tweet about an Aussie woman of colour

  • The US[eless] Studies Centre – An Update- Once again David Smith bags Donald Trump onTrump Tuesday

  • Documentation- Charlie Pickering as Political Activist (sans comedy)

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  • ABC FINALLY REPORTS THAT BOB BROWN REGARDS WIND FARMS AS BIRD MURDERERS

Finally, the ABC has reported the fact that former Greens leader Dr Bob Brown, who heads the Bob Brown Foundation, is opposed to the construction of a vast windfarm on Robbins Island in Tasmania’s north east.

On 8 July the Mercury in Hobart carried an article by the former Greens leader opposing the Robbins Island proposal because it would be both ugly and a bird murderer.  The story was covered by Graham Lloyd in The Australian on 15 and 16 July and also reported in The Guardian Australia.  But it was ignored by the ABC and Nine newspapers.

Now, Bob Brown has a following among ABC viewers/listeners along with Sydney Morning Herald/Age readers.  It would seem that editors at the taxpayer funded public broadcaster and at the Nine Newspapers decided to protect their followers from Bob Brown’s apostasy in this instance.

The issue was mentioned by Insiders’ presenter Annabel Crabb when interviewing Greens leader Richard Di Natale last Sunday. And it was reported by Carrington Clarke on 7.30 last night.  Which means that it took the ABC around two weeks to report the fact that the sainted Bob Brown opposes large windfarms on parts of his Tasmanian patch.

  • DERRYN HINCH LETS ZALI STEGGALL GET AWAY WITH POLITICAL FUDGE

Did anyone watch Derryn Hinch’s (soft) interview with Zali Steggall, the Independent member for Warringah, on Sky News’ Hinch last night?

Your man Hinch said nothing when Ms Steggall described herself as a “moderate Liberal”.  Here’s a question that the self-declared Human Headline might have asked: “Ms Steggall, how do you define yourself as a moderate Liberal when you have never voted for the Liberal Party in your life in a Federal election – not even when Malcolm Turnbull was the Liberal Party leader in 2016?”

It would have been an interesting question.  But, alas, it was not asked.  Instead Zali Steggall was able to get away with running the line that her views are close to the Liberal Party.  But not close enough to support Malcolm Turnbull in the election of 2016 which Labor went close to winning. Turn it up.


NEW FEATURE – A JANE CARO MOMENT


IN WHICH MS CARO CONVINCES 3-YEAR-OLD ALFIE THAT TRUMP, JOHNSON AND MORRISON ARE THE LEADERS OF TURDS

For its part, MWD is delighted that Jane Caro has decided to stay in this wide brown land – and not taken the option of fleeing to New Zealand in the wake of the May 2019 election.  As readers will recall, Ms Caro did speak of the attraction of leaving Australia and exercising the New Zealand option after the good people of Australia rejected her advice and returned Scott Morrison’s Coalition government with an increased majority.

As the votes were counted on election night 2019, Jane Caro AM condemned her fellow Australians who returned the Coalition – describing them as truculent turds.  But she later explained that she was on-the-turps at the time while attending a wedding. Enough said.

Having remained in Australia, Ms Caro keeps in personal touch with her grandchildren. This is what she tweeted at 11.20 am on Wednesday, in cold-sober mode:

Jane Caro @JaneCaro

I read my grandson a book about dinosaurs this morning but I changed the end. ‘The dinosaurs ruled the earth for thousands of years but then they voted for Trump, Morrison & Johnson, and that was the end of them.’ Alfie sighed & shook his head, expressing my sentiments exactly.

11:20 AM · Jul 24, 2019·

So there you have it. Jane Caro regards the voters of the United States, Australia and Britain as dinosaurs who have voted for their own extinction. She seems unaware that British electors are yet to vote for a Johnson government – although they may do so.

And how about Master Alfie?  Aged about three, he is not old enough to read.  But he’s apparently old enough to know the occupation of Donald J Trump, Scott Morrison and Boris Johnson – and to understand that they are, well, the leaders of truculent turds.  And Master Alfie is old enough to sigh and engage in head movements in support of Grandma’s political sentiments.

Verily, A Jane Caro Moment.


Can You Bear It

CAN YOU BEAR IT?

  • TONY WALKER’S BORIS JOHNSON CONFUSION

While on the topic of Boris Johnson  and all that, this is what Tony Walker – a vice-chancellor’s fellow at La Trobe University – had to say in his column in Nine Newspapers on Monday.

Boris Johnson may be a buffoon in the eyes of many of his fellow countrymen but in the next day or so he is likely to become prime minister of Britain, resident of 10 Downing Street and a man committed to taking Britain out of Europe.

Putting this into context, Johnson will occupy the same premises and assume the same office as some of the outstanding Whig, Tory, Liberal and Labour figures of the 19th and 20th centuries in peace and in war.

How a man who was sacked from The Times and whose shambolic personal life goes beyond tabloid fodder is about to hold the same office as Palmerston, Gladstone, Disraeli, Asquith, Churchill, Wilson or Thatcher is little short of astonishing.

It’s interesting to note that this La Trobe University vice-chancellor fellow, who scribbles for the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, believes that Benjamin Disraeli’s personal life was not on the shambolic side.  Your man Disraeli was a womaniser of some note. Henry Herbert Asquith wasn’t so upright either.  He had a notorious affair with his daughter’s friend while prime minister.  [I wonder what kind of history is taught these days in the groves of La Trobe University – MWD Editor.]

And what about your man Walker’s position that anyone sacked by The Times is not fit to be prime minister of Britain? Benjamin Disraeli was into gutter journalism for a part of his career – and probably should have been sacked by his proprietor.  Your man Walker used to be an Age journalist and takes his former profession somewhat too seriously.  Can You Bear It?

  • DANNI HUNTER ON THE ALLEGED UPWARD “FAILING” OF MESSRS TRUMP & JOHNSON (WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM LA TRIOLI)

Not long after Tony Walker warned the fate Britain would suffer if a man sacked by The Times became the occupant of 10 Downing Street, the “Newspapers” segment of ABC TV News Breakfast discussed this very reality.

The co-presenters were Paul Kennedy and Virginia Trioli and the guest commentator was Danni Hunter of the Urban Development Institute of Australia.  Ms Hunter referred to “Boris’s Britain” and declared that “there is no more interesting or outrageous place to start this morning”. Sure, Britain is interesting right now. But outrageous?  Let’s go to the transcript as the discussion continued:

Virginia Trioli: What happens now?

Danni Hunter: Well, what happens now in England or in the world, really?

Virginia Trioli: – more generally in terms of the relationship. Because you’ve got two – I used that terrible term before, what’s another word for disrupters? Two unpredictable, highly unpredictable, characters leading two great world powers.

Danni Hunter: And widely unexpected considering that most people kind of have this great amount of shock about it – “oh goodness, why, it can’t be real”. But they’ve been voted in, this is a democratic process, they’re in high, high office. I heard someone on the radio speaking on ABC Melbourne this morning when I was coming in about this “failing upwards” concept. That these leaders in high office – it’s incredible but some of them really – they can be incredibly racist, they can say things that are really considered in all society as being appalling, they can have dishevelled looks perhaps. They’re not your kind of clean-cut view of leaders as we used to expect them to be. And they’re failing upwards. So hopefully they make a mark in some way that is positive on the world.

What a load of absolute tosh.  For starters, it’s not all that clear that “most people ” believe that a situation where Donald J Trump is president of the United States and Boris Johnson prime minister of Britain “can’t be real”.  It’s also not clear what will happen in Britain.   But President Trump has a good chance of being re-elected in November 2020.  Nor is it true to depict either man as “incredibly racist”.  At least Paul Kennedy intervened in the discussion to point out that Boris Johnson is popular.

And what’s this about “failing upwards”?  Both Donald J Trump and Boris Johnson set out to become leader of their respective countries and achieved their aim.  Hardly a fail. Can You Bear It?

  • Q&A AND THE STRANGE CASE OF THE SILENCE OF THE SHEILAS

It was very much a case of Blokes-Night on the ABC TV Q&A program last Monday.  Tony Jones was in the presenter’s chair. His “star” panellist was the garrulous Alastair Campbell supported by the garrulous Geoff Gallop.  The former was described as “Tony Blair’s legendary spin doctor” and the latter as a “former Western Australian premier” – he was a Labor premier, by the way. There followed Griffith University political scientist Anne Tiernan, the head of the Menzies Research Centre Nick Cater and English-born businesswoman Kate Mills.  It was also mentioned that your man Campbell “has just released a documentary about his battle with depression”.

Nick Cater (who supports Brexit and is sympathetic to President Trump) was obviously there to balance Alastair Campbell (who opposes Brexit and is hostile to President Trump). The first ten minutes of the program was devoted to arguments about populism, Donald J. Trump, Brexit and so on.  After that, most of the time was devoted to mental health.

Here’s the break-down about who had the most to say:

Alastair Campbell – spoke for around 18 minutes

Geoff Gallop – spoke for around 12 minutes

Nick Cater – spoke for around 81/2 minutes

Anne Tiernan – spoke for just under 5 minutes

Kate Mills – spoke for just over 4 minutes

So Comrade Campbell spoke for around 38 per cent of the time allocated to panellists while Comrade Gallop scored 25 per cent of the time – Nick Cater came in at around 18 per cent.

And what about the sheilas?  Well, they were drowned out by Comrade Campbell and Gallop – scoring about 18 per cent of the time between them.  On one occasion when Ms Mills was asked a question by the presenter, Comrade Campbell constantly interrupted her answer.

Now the ABC is invariably banging on about the need for gender diversity, equal pay and the like. However, last Monday, Tony Jones did not ensure that Dr Tiernan and Ms Mills got a fair go.  Indeed, it was the case of “The Silence of the Sheilas”. Can You Bear It?

  • NINE NEWSPAPERS’ ROMAN FANTASY

It just so happened that, at Hangover Time on Tuesday, Jackie’s (male) co-owner was reading a book when an email arrived from an avid Melbourne reader. The tome in question was Gerard Henderson’s school boy Latin Primer – or was it Latin for Dummies?

In any event, Hendo’s attention was drawn to Nine Newspapers’ “CBD” column of that very morning – written by the Melbourne-based Samantha Hutchinson and the Sydney-based Michael Koziol.

It’s not quite clear who reads the “CBD” column in the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age – since it does not provide much news about business in either city’s central business district.

Take Wednesday’s column, for example.  There was one piece on the real estate group The Agency.  Another segment was on who had lunch and/or dinner with whom around Parliament House in Canberra on Monday night.  Yawn. The report included a claim that someone had looked at someone else with “dagger eyes”.  Yawn squared.

Then there was a final segment titled “Tony’s Next Ride” concerning Australia’s 28th prime minister Tony Abbott.  “CBD” reported the (old) news that Tony Abbott did not want to become Australia’s next ambassador to the Holy See in Rome.  Yes – we already knew. There followed more trivia – of no relationship to any CBD anywhere:

The ex-PM has become a semi-permanent fixture in the see-and-be-seen cafe at 1 Bligh Street – home to the Commonwealth parliamentary offices – where he was recently snapped having coffee with NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet. He is also indulging his love of cycling. Not content with clocking up 1000 kilometres on the Pollie Pedal last week, he is apparently off to Japan for more.

Upon his return, Abbott will hit the speakers’ circuit at the inaugural Conservative Political Action Conference in Sydney. It’s a local step-out of the American Conservative Union, co-hosted with libertarian lobby shop LibertyWorks. Abbott has top billing alongside Brexiteer Nigel Farage, his former chief-of-staff Peta Credlin and News Corp columnist Janet Albrechtsen.

But all this leaves Morrison without a replacement for career diplomat Melissa Hitchman in the Vatican. Perhaps the inimitable Gerard Henderson is available?

Well, it’s tempting.  Even if it means replacing Media Watch Dog with “Vatican Watch Dog”. And Jackie’s (female) co-owner reckons there are lotsa bones buried in the Holy City which would keep a Queensland Heeler busy for eons. However, no offer has arrived. Nor is one expected. “CBD” just made this up.

Come to think of it, on Monday 1 July 2019, “CBD” (which was written by Kylar Loussikian and Samantha Hutchinson) led with a story on the annual revue at St Paul’s College at the University of Sydney.  The BIG STORY turned on – wait for it – the “risqué numbers in the repertoire”. And Nine Newspapers reckons that all this tosh has something to do with the Central Business District in Sydney and Melbourne.  Can You Bear It?


Media Watch Dog’s Five Paws Award was inaugurated in Issue Number 26 (4 September 2009) during the time of Nancy (2004-2017). The first winner was ABC TV presenter Emma Alberici.  Ms Alberici scored for remembering the Nazi-Soviet Pact of 23 August 1939 whereby Hitler and Stalin divided Eastern Europe between Germany and the Soviet Union.  And for stating that the Nazi-Soviet Pact had effectively started the Second World War, since it was immediately followed by Germany’s invasion of Poland (at a time when the Soviet Union had become an ally of Germany).

Over the years, the late Nancy’s Five Paws Award has become one of the world’s most prestigious gongs – rating just below the Nobel Prize and Academy Awards.

PHIL COOREY SCORES FOR HOLDING STATES AND TERRITORIES TO ACCOUNT FOR BADLY BUILT APARTMENTS

Here’s what the Australian Financial Review’’s political editor had to say on Insiders last Sunday about the suggestion that the Commonwealth Government should provide financial assistance to the States and Territories to repair badly built apartments.

Phil Coorey: I do have some sympathy for the feds on this. I mean, since when has it been acceptable in this country to build crap? I mean, you know, it seems to be this sort of phenomenon in the last few years that buildings – you’re not just talking about the cladding issue, you’re using dodgy products – but the towers in Sydney and so forth. The ACT is full of rotten apartment buildings and has been for years. It’s a common complaint there….

But this is a State [issue] – the States set their own building codes they should police their own building codes. They have courts, they have parliaments, they can do this. And this is a failure by them. And now they’re coming cap in hand to Canberra saying “help”. Yes, I think it’s a good idea to have a national building code, I’m surprised we didn’t have it in the first place. But the building industry – well the building industry should look after itself. I mean maybe they should sling a few people in jail for some of their work and they might pick up –

Annabel Crabb: you’re very feisty this morning, aren’t you?

Phil Coorey: I am fired up on this. I just think, there’s all this excuse making and duck shoving off to Canberra for an abject failure on a State and Territory level on this. And the building – I haven’t seen a builder go to the sling for it or anything like that.

Phil Coorey: Five Paws


NEW FEATURE – JACKIE’S TAKE ON NEW ZEALAND

As reported last week, there was a large turn-up of the Melbourne Sandalista Set at the Melbourne Town Hall on Thursday 18 July to hear New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern being interviewed by Virginia Trioli.  It was as if the various soviets of Melbourne lefties put on their sandals and headed off to the Melbourne Town Hall to hear what they wanted to hear and just loved hearing it.  Re which see today’s “Media Fool of the Week” segment.

Due to the hero status of Ms Ardern among the Australian left, MWD has commissioned Jackie to have a look – and a sniff – at ongoing developments in the Land of the Long White (Socialist) Cloud. Here is her inaugural report:

JACINDA ARDERN’S NEW ZEALAND – WHERE EVEN THE PENGUINS ARE SOCIALISTS

Australian penguins are a hard-working lot – as anyone would know who has seen them at work in Victoria and Tasmania.  The mature, able-bodied ones head out to sea at dawn and return at night with food for themselves and their offspring.  It is hard work.  If they were humans, penguins would be regarded as members of the toiling masses.  Unlike entrepreneurial canines – most of whom are the recipients of prepared meals and structured walks in response to performing security tasks and providing affection as required.

However, it seems that some of the penguins of Wellington – New Zealand’s capital – have elected for socialism. According to reports in the New Zealand Herald, that is.

On two occasions in recent times, blue penguins have been removed from a Wellington sushi bar which goes by the name of Sushi Bi after an unlawful entry.  It seems that the penguins in question have decided that it’s a lot easier to steal fish at Sushi Bi than to spend up to 12 hours and beyond in Wellington Harbour searching for their main course.  Also, it appears that the penguins enjoyed the warmth generated by the grills beneath the shop – which sure beats the cold of Wellington Harbour.

What’s next?  Perhaps New Zealand’s cows will unionise and only produce milk from Mondays to Fridays without penalty rates. We’ll keep you posted.

 

 


Media Fool Of The Week 

FAWN AGAIN: FITZ’S JACINDA ARDERN SUCK-UP PLUS SOME FAKE NEWS

The Sandalista Set’s sucking-up to New Zealand Labour Party prime minister continues apace. Witness the following grovel by The Red Bandannaed One’s “Fitz on Sunday” column in last Sunday’s Sun-Herald :

Jacinda Surprise

Goodness! It is a weird thing to call your Missus and suddenly find yourself chatting for 10 minutes to the most popular political leader in the world, but so it proved on Friday. I’d forgotten my wife was interviewing Jacinda Ardern for The Sunday Project on Channel Ten and my call came through just as they were wrapping up. The most fascinating thing about the New Zealand Prime Minister, of course, is that even though the politics of the world is drifting to feral right, she is the beacon for how politics can be done – progressive, inclusive, considered – and still romp home at elections.

Needless to say, Peter FitzSimons’ missus – Lisa Wilkinson – also did a fawning interview with Prime Minister Ardern on The Sunday Project.  Quelle surprise!

What your man FitzSimons did not tell his readers – if readers there were – is the truth about how Ms Ardern became prime minister in The Land of the Long White Cloud.  The assertion that she “romped home” in New Zealand’s last election is just FAKE NEWS.

At the 23 September 2017 New Zealand election, the primary votes of the major parties were as follows:

National Party (leader Ben English) – 44.4 per cent

Labour Party (leader Jacinda Ardern) – 36.9 per cent

New Zealand First (leader Winston Peters) – 7.2 per cent

Green Party (leader James Shaw) – 6.3 per cent

ACT New Zealand (leader David Seymour) – 0.5 per cent

Others – 4.7 per cent

At the close of the count, the total seats were as follows:

National Party       56

Labour Party         46

New Zealand First 9

Green Party           8

ACT New Zealand  1

So the Jacinda Ardern Labour Party did not “romp home” at the last election.  It came in second – on the primary vote and in seats.  Ms Ardern only got the top job after doing a deal with the populist New Zealand First Party led by Winston Peters – New Zealand’s equivalent of Pauline Hanson. Also Ms Ardern went to the polls with a promise to cut immigration. How progressive, considered and inclusive is that? – MWD hears you cry.

Moreover, when in office, the Ardern government did not toughen New Zealand’s (then) very weak gun laws.  Nor did Ms Ardern instruct New Zealand’s intelligence agencies to monitor right-wing extremist groups – which unlike ASIO in Australia, they had not been doing.  All this changed after the tragedy of the Christchurch mass murder attacks on two mosques.

And The Red Bandannaed One reckons that Ms Ardern provides “the beacon of how politics can be done”.

Peter FitzSimons: Media Fool of the Week.


MARIEKE HARDY’S MELBOURNE WRITERS’ FESTIVAL – ANOTHER LEFTIST STACK WITH AN EMPHASIS ON LOVE

There was enormous interest in last week’s MWD coverage of the Canberra Writers’ Festival which will run from 21-25 August 2019.  As pointed out, the 2019 CWF is essentially a Conservative Free Zone – with The Australian’s Chris Kenny as the token conservative in the various panels on politics, economics, social issues and the media.  Otherwise – as is the case with many a taxpayer funded writers’ festival – the 2019 CWF is essentially a leftist stack.

For the uninitiated, writers’ festivals are occasions when leftist organisers get a bucket load of taxpayers’ money and use it to invite their ideological mates to attend the gig.  This invariably leads to a situation where virtually everyone agrees with virtually everyone else on virtually everything.

The Melbourne Writers’ Festival will run from 30 August to 8 September 2019.  The theme is “When We Talk About Love” – and the artistic director is a well-known leftist Marieke Hardy. Ms Hardy has got her hands on a bucket load of money – provided by taxpayers and paid out by the Victorian government, the City of Melbourne and the Commonwealth government (through the Australia Council for the Arts) – and used it to construct a festival in her image.  This is how Ms Hardy explains her you-beaut idea:

I think the world as we know it is in a bit of a garbage fire, with a lot of political and emotional angst, environmental angst and a lot of pain.  So my response is to make this festival.

So that’s pretty clear then?

The 2019 MWF  & Politics

In so far as politics is involved, the 2019 MWF is a leftist stack with barely a conservative on the speakers’ list (with the American Deborah Lipstadt and the Australian Dvir Abramovich as notable exceptions).  You be the judge with reference to the Australasian performers – most of whom are leftist, social democratic or left-of-centre types.

Dennis Altman, Robyn Archer, Bob Brown, Julian Burnside, Jane Caro, Deborah Cheetham, Helen Clark, Sophie Cunningham, Sushi Das, Catherine Deveny, Andrew Dodd, Clementine Ford, Marieke Hardy, Chloe Hooper, Sacha Horler, Erik Jensen, Benjamin Law, Scott Ludlam, Martin McKenzie-Murray, Hilary McPhee, George Megalogenis,   Alex Miller, Louise Milligan, Fiona Patten, Charlie Pickering, Ben Quilty, Jamila Rizvi, Mark Rubbo, Tim Soutphommasane, Jason Steger, Lenore Taylor, Virginia Trioli, Alexis Wright, Clare Wright, Arnold Zable.

Enough said.

George Pell Antagonists Louise Milligan and Martin McKenzie-Murray to discuss George Pell

As with the 2019 CWF, the 2019 MWF will feature this session on Cardinal George Pell.  Here are the details:

Fall of the Prince

When Sun 8 Sep, 10am
Venue RMIT Storey Hall

Tickets $35/$25

Louise Milligan knows the Pell case well: she won the prestigious Gold Quill for her coverage, and her book Cardinal: The Rise and Fall of George Pell – infamously removed from Victorian bookshelves during Pell’s trial – was awarded the 2017 Walkley Book Award. She speaks with The Saturday Paper’s Martin McKenzie-Murray about the long and emotional journey from breaking story to conviction.

Needless to say, The Saturday Paper’s Martin McKenzie-Murray is a Pell antagonist – like Louise Milligan.  The fact is that during her interviews on the ABC or her appearances at literary festivals, Ms Milligan has never appeared with a critic of her work – only with such supporters as David Marr, Tom Keneally and now Martin McKenzie-Murray.

The MWF blurb makes no mention of the fact that there is an appeal in this case and the Victorian Court of Appeal has yet to hand down its finding in George Pell v The Queen. Also, the assertion that the book Cardinal was “infamously removed from Victorian bookshops during Pell’s trial” is wilfully misleading.  The book was withdrawn because it was the work of a Pell antagonist which was published before the jury had brought down its verdict and was regarded as adversely affecting the defendant’s right to a fair trial in the Victorian criminal jurisdiction.

Love Means Attending Writers’ Festivals

As to love and all that, Marieke Hardy explained her view of the 2019 MWF in a (soft) interview with The Age’s book editor Jason Steger.  Here’s what your man Steger had to say about the event in The Age on 10 July 2019:

There will be sessions on motherhood, bodies and home; on romance and divorce; and a series of events celebrating Australia’s first nation stories; conversations on music between artists such as Tina Arena and Deborah Cheetham, and Vivien Goldsman and Amanda Roff; love letters to books and the future; a day for young adults and romance fans; workshops and masterclasses, and much more. Last year the festival staged a funeral for Magda Szubanski; this year it’s a wedding reception for Yumi Stynes. There will even be a naked tour of the library’s catacombs.

Hardy is particularly excited by the arrival of the Museum of Broken Relationships. The museum, which is based in Zagreb and Los Angeles and curated by Croatian artists Olinka Vistica and Drazen Grubisic, is created from items that were significant to a particular relationship along with information explaining that importance. There will be a call-out for local objects and stories so the museum creates a truly Melbourne exhibition.

So there you have it.  Per courtesy of taxpayers and ratepayers, the Sandalista Set at the 2019 MWF will be able to get off their gear and run around starkers in the bowels of the State Library of Victoria.  It would be illegal if it took place outside the State Library on Swanston Street.

Also MWF attendees will be able to donate to the Museum of Broken Relationships a third rate relic from a bust-up. Perhaps a former partner’s sandals or maybe a his/hers Che Guevara unwashed tee-shirt.

Luke McGregor’s Love Letter to Luke McGregor

Jackie’s (male) co-owner’s favourite session is titled “A Love Letter To Myself” – to be held at Gin & Tonic time on Saturday 31 August in the State Library of Victoria.

“Self-love” might be a breezy catchphrase about emotional wellbeing, but what does it feel like to write a love letter to yourself? Mama Alto, Vicki Laveau-Harvie, Luke McGregor, and Ellen van Neerven read their missives to the person who looks back at them in the mirror.

Spoiler alert.  Ms Hardy’s idea of getting narcissists to write letters to themselves about themselves is not new.  It merely channels the 1935 song “I’m gonna sit right down and write myself a letter” – which contains the following lines:

I’m gonna sit right down and write myself a letter

And make believe it came from you

I’m gonna write words, oh, so sweet

They’re gonna knock me off my feet

A lotta kisses on the bottom

I’ll be glad I got ‘em.

The 2019 MWF – All Sandalistas Welcome

MWD predicts that the 2019 Melbourne Writers’ Festival will appeal especially to leftists who (i) only want to hear leftists, (ii) happen to like flashing their private parts underground, (iii) keep mementos of failed relationships and (iv) write love letters to their narcissistic selves.

Your Taxes At Work.


As avid readers are aware, the late Nancy (2004-2017) did not die. She merely “passed” on to the Other Side. Hence MWD has been able to keep in touch with her and seek her advice – with the help of the American psychic John Edward of Crossing Over fame. And so, Nancy’s “Courtesy Classes” continue – albeit from the “Other Side” – Nancy’s wise counsel is communicated to those living in this Vale of Tears by Jackie (Dip. Wellness, The Gunnedah Institute) via Mr Edward.

PAUL BONGIORNO’S ANTI-RITA PANAHI RANT

Thanks to the avid reader who drew MWD’s attention to the tweet by Herald Sun columnist and Outsiders’ co-presenter Rita Panahi and the comment on it by The [Boring] Saturday Paper’s Paul Bongiorno:

@RitaPanahi: Adam Goodes is entitled to his views, as are his cheerleaders in the media. What they’re not entitled to do is to re-write history or label anyone who disagrees as a racist. MORE: https://bit.ly/2BuFqi1 #outsiders

9:42 AM · Jul 21, 2019

Rita Panahi’s tweet was a courteous statement that it is wrong to label anyone who disagrees with Adam Goodes’ explanation as to why he was booed during his final years playing for the Swans in the Australian Football League as a racist. Some will agree with this view – not some others.  But it’s a considered statement – not a rant.

However, Rita Panahi’s mild-mannered, albeit tough-minded, tweet led to this response from Paul (“I used to share digs with Gerald Ridsdale but I don’t talk about it much”) Bongiorno:

@PaulBongiorno

Replying to @SkyNewsAust @RitaPanahi

What a dreadful piece of work..the deranged bile of this commentator knows no bounds.

5:37 AM – 21 Jul 2019

So there you have it.  Bonge called Rita Panahi – a woman of colour, no less – “a dreadful piece of work”. And then he accused her of expressing “deranged bile”.  Previously (19 July) Bonge called President Trump a “racist bastard” for criticising “those persons of colour” who make up The Squad.

Nancy Comments (Via Jackie With Lotsa Help From John Edward):

I note that Paul Bongiorno (AM, STB, STL, Pontifical Urban University Rome & Knight of the Italian Republic) has once again exhibited anger towards younger women.  Once upon a time, your man Bonge was wont to preach about peace and love – which reflected his early years in the priesthood along with his regard for Christ’s message: “Love one another as I have loved you” (John 13: 34-35).  Now, in his later years, Bonge is accusing the Iranian-born Ms Panahi of being not only “deranged” but also a “piece of work”.

I would recommend that Mr Bongiorno drink a Gin & Tonic every morning, every night and frequently during the day and go on an anger management course.  He might also think about closing his Twitter account – since it seems to be an occasion of sin with respect to younger women of colour in Australia and more besides.

I hope this is helpful.

The Late Nancy AC (aka Always Courteous)


THE US[ELESS] STUDIES CENTRE – AN  UPDATE

As avid readers are only too well aware, Professor Simon Jackman (the head of the United States Studies Centre) said in November 2016 that no one at the USSC expected that Donald J. Trump would defeat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.  He also ‘fessed up that no one at the USSC supported Donald Trump. David Smith, who suffers from Trump-phobia is a USSC staff member.  Now read on.

DAVID SMITH BAGS TRUMP’S DIVISIVENESS – BUT NOT HILLARY CLINTON’S “DEPLORABLES” STATEMENT

It was the usual anti-Donald J. Trump rant on ABC Radio Sydney’s Drive with Richard Glover on Tuesday.  As usual, David Smith from the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, was the commentator on the Tuesday segment Trump Tuesday.

This is what Dr Smith (for a doctor he is) had to say about President Trump:

David Smith: Trump of course goes back to his old refrain about “I haven’t got a racist bone in my body”. Well, nobody is interested in his bones. It’s what comes out of his mouth that matters. And what we’re seeing coming out of his mouth is an increasing stream of racism, which, first of all I think is quite a sincere expression of his personal beliefs. Second, he clearly thinks it’s a personal winner. He’s following the legendary strategy of Richard Nixon which was described by one of his advisors as “we’ve got to divide the country into two halves and take the bigger half”. He thinks the bigger half, so to speak, is with people who are terrified about the country becoming less white.

If David Smith was a professional activist, this commentary would be understandable. It’s just that he is a taxpayer funded academic at the taxpayer funded United States Studies Centre – which is supposed to provide an objective view of the contemporary United States.

It’s easy to brand President Trump as a racist – especially since this term is directed these days at someone whom the accuser does not like.  However, there is no evidence that the president treats people of colour differently from whites.

And as for dividing the country – David Smith seems to forget that it was not so long ago that leading Democrat Hillary Clinton, when contesting the 2016 presidential election, divided America into those who were “deplorables” and those who were not. Sounds somewhat divisive, don’t you think?

Stand by for another manifestation of Trump-phobia on “Trump Tuesday” next week.


 

CHARLIE PICKERING AS POLITICAL ACTIVIST (SANS COMEDY)

On Wednesday, Professor Anne Pender gave a lively presentation at The Sydney Institute on the topic “Where Has All The Satire Gone?: What’s Wrong With Australian Satire?”  This coincided with the publication of her book Seven Big Australians: Adventures With Comic Actors (Monash University Publishing, 2019).

The following exchange took place during the discussion when it was suggested that most of Australia’s current crop of comedians were prepared to laugh at conservatives (Coalition) and social democrats (Labor) – but not at the Green Left (Greens) – since they see themselves as the left-wing activists as well as comedians.

Gerard Henderson: No-one laughs at the Green-Left these days, I mean [Barry] Humphries would but who else would?

Anne Pender: I don’t, I don’t see [Charlie] Pickering as that, that sort of politically barbed actually. The Weekly is a news show.

Gerard Henderson: I’ll publish one of his Green-Left lectures in my Media Watch Dog blog next Friday for your attention.

Anne Pender: But on his show?

Gerard Henderson: From his show! From his show.

Anne Pender: I think it’s pretty mild.

You be the judge.  Here is Charlie Pickering’s Green/Left lecture on climate change from The Weekly on 15 May 2019.

[A Sky News segment in which Peta Credlin and Alan Jones are discussing the climate change is shown. Credlin pours a large quantity of rice into a bowl which represents the atmosphere and Jones pulls out one grain and claims that is Australia’s contribution. A montage of clips from Sky News is then shown in which various hosts claim that Australia’s contribution to emissions is too small to make much of a difference. Finally a clip of Jones is shown in which he claims that politicians “don’t do any homework” but “this Lady [Credlin] and I do our homework”. Charlie Pickering then pulls out a hand-made poster labelled “Alan and Peta’s Science Project”, it is meant to look like a child’s homework project.]

Charlie Pickering: …Now this is the world’s carbon emission from fossil fuels as if they were 100 grains of rice. Now China is 27 grains of rice, g’day China. The United States is 15 grains of rice. And this little grain here with the little flag for a cape is Australia- [Charlie pulls out a grain of rice wearing a tiny Akubra and an Australian flag for a cape] that is Australia. I tell you if you think fighting climate change is tough, try getting a hat on a grain of rice.

Now Australia’s contribution doesn’t seem like much but neither does that of other smaller emitters. Like uh England [Charlie puts on an English accent, shows grain of rice wearing bearskin hat] Allo’ Gov. Or uh or France [French accent, shows grain of rice with large moustache] uh-huh-huh sexuality. But if you take all of these other countries who like us contribute 2 per cent or less to global emissions they actually make up 41 per cent of that total or the largest chunk of the whole meal. Now together they can have a major impact but if they each decide that they are too small to make a difference, then this rice is gonna get fried. Now, now I could sit here and tell you that if everyone adopted Australia’s approach it could lead to a catastrophic 3 degrees of warming [attributed to Climate Action Tracker] or that the Prime Minister admitted just last week that our current carbon emissions are still going up [attributed to the Sydney Morning Herald] but instead I want to talk about this one grain of rice, Australia [holds up Australian rice].

Now usually we take pride in punching above our weight, whether it’s the America’s Cup or the Olympic medal tally or our hugely successful Hemsworth export industry [photo of the Hemsworth brothers]. And yes maybe we’re just one grain of rice but we’ve always been just one grain of rice. In World War 2 we made up around 2 per cent of the Western Allies fighting overseas but we didn’t decide not to fight because we were too small to make a difference.

We took pride in doing our part because the consequences of doing nothing were unthinkable and we teamed up with countries like England, who this month declared a climate emergency and just last week went a whole week without burning coal and France who have a third of our emissions per person despite their penchant for burning cathedrals. Now I’m not saying France and England have won the war on climate change but when people tell us that we shouldn’t pull our weight because we’re only one grain of rice, I don’t know what country they’re talking about because it sure as hell isn’t Australia.

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Now, that sounds like a Green/Left lecture by Charlie Pickering on The Weekly – don’t you think?

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Until next time.

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