Monday, February 13, 2012

The Public Has A Right To ..... Silence


A FRIEND OF the Billabong who works in Canberra writes:

It’s an open secret Gillard’s spinners blitzed the gallery to blame Abbott straight after the Lobby incident and it is an open secret the gallery wants this to go away in the worst way. Pyne should call on (a prominent journalist) to explain why he was telling colleagues it was Abbott’s fault within minutes.

The journalist’s name will not be shared with readers, as there is no evidence stronger than mere assertion that he compromised his ethics and professional standards by serving as an eager publicist for Gillard’s orchestrated smears.

That said, the message took hold double-quick, as this Australia Day tweet by Ten’s Hugh Riminton suggests. Notice how denying a slander is "spinning hard" and also the implied assertion that Abbott wanted Humpytown shut down.  Oh, and just for the record, Ten's chief political correspondent was not the journalist named in this morning's email.

The Billabong’s correspondent suggests Abbott’s people pick through reporters’ tweets for the hours after the riot, identify the worst and threaten libel actions against those who sheeted home the blame to the Opposition leader. Reporters are cowards, the correspondent writes, scared to go against the gallery’s groupthink. But the threat of being dragged into court, that could be something even more scary than colleagues’ disdain, He might have a point. The prospect might just loosen a few tongues.

28 comments:

  1. As Heiner to Rudd, so the riot to Gillard?

    BTW, did she ever get that shoe back?

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    1. Yes. The irony-deficient staged a ceremonial handing back of the show. Who said reconciliation was just a dream?

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    2. "We acknowledge the traditional owner of this hallowed Midas...", LOL.

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  2. The Old and Unimproved DaveFebruary 13, 2012 at 10:13 AM

    You'd have to say that everyone's about 90% sure of just who that "prominent journalist" is.....

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  3. It's hardly surprising to read that from Ol' Hugh.
    Let's not forget his network's parly house CoS has considerable form for neither flagging nor failing in his energetic guidance for Labor's cause.

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  4. A journalist (or several) is (are) sitting on facts that could become one of the biggest political stories for years. But "solidarity" (with fellow journalists and the Labor/left groupthink) prevents them from breaking the story.

    Amazing.

    Appalling.

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  5. "The Billabong’s correspondent suggests Abbott’s people pick through reporters’ tweets for the hours after the riot, identify the worst" . Put it out there in Blog land. I'm sure you would get lots of willing volunteers to help go through them.

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  6. As the Instapundit says, if you want accountable govt you have to vote conservative cos that's the only kind of govt the leftie groupthink press cares to investigate. It's a pretty savage indictment but to my mind it's right on the money (apart from noble exceptions...I think we know who they are Prof).

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  7. Bunyip is once more to the fore and is spot on with regard to what the opposition should do i.e. sue those Canberra journalists who(amongst other things) by omission are trying to perpetuate the lie that Jules is Australia's savior.
    Methinks collectively they are a dud lot of schmucks.

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  8. There is scope here for a real committed journalist to have a place in political history as noted as Bernstein and Woodward, and they don't need a
    "Deep Throat" to get to the truth.

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  9. 1. Offer prepared comments only, and in answer to written questions.
    2. No verbals or scrums.
    3. No follow-up explanations, no confirmatory statements; unless requested in writing.
    4. If a reporter 'needs' further details, he can make an appointment for a formal interview.
    5. Make 'most believable mis-statements made to a reporter' a Walkley award event.

    Cheers

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  10. Where a 'political communication' (and that is an elastic concept) is involved, the extent to which a defamatory statement is actionable is more restricted than in other contexts. Some years ago the High Court, by highly tendentious reasoning, found that the sections of the Constitution that created our federal system of representative government gave rise to an implication that there also existed a guarantee of freedom of speech on matters of political import (as one of the Theophaneous brothers found out to his dismay). So there is this legal (and potentially financial) problem with Abbott's resorting to the services of Messrs Sue, Grabbitt and Runne. There is also the problem of Abbott looking like a bit of a wuss if he sues.

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  11. Gillards pawns .... There are more intelligent things lying on their backs at the bottom of a pond .

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  12. Tory Maguire was prepared to say this in her 27 January piece on The Punch:

    "Tony Hodges...was the one trawling the Press Gallery yesterday afternoon trying to sheet home blame for the ugly scenes to the Opposition Leader."

    http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/when-is-this-sorry-mess-going-to-end/

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  13. I'm trying to apply Judge Mordy's famous principles to reading between the lines. Hmmm, I'll just have to await further developments - don't want to scare the moderator - hopefully someone can put those tweets into chrono order like Climategate.

    I recall the rather smug Hugh, who used to work at Ch9 (?), dated 'honest' Princess Natasha. Say no more.

    -Carl

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  14. I guess with the quality of lecturers and other academic hangers-on in the Australian schools of journalism, we can expect continuing waves of little left foot soldiers being spewed out into the media as has been the case over the past 20 years or longer. They are literally brainwashed and emerge with the deep seated belief that business is bad, any theory that espouses man made global warming must be embraced without question and the Labor lightweights can continue on their destructive way without journalistic scrutiny.

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    1. Young fogeys - to a fault.

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    2. With leftwing political activist/propagandists like Wendy Bacon and former Communist Tribune editor David McKnight holding professorships at Australian journalism schools and many of the rest confirming the adage that "those who can't do it, teach", the abstracting of journalism training at university campuses is in anything but good hands.

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    3. And don't forget, those who can't teach, teach teachers. And those who can't teach teachers are given professorships in the psychology of education degrees, or journalism.

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  15. Better mine those tweets before the authors start deleting them down the memory hole...

    In fact, be interesting to see who the key deleters might prove to be.

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  16. The prime minister and her spin doctors weave another wicked web of deceit.

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  17. A certain flegling news organisation should be getting to the bottom of this pronto. Quick wins and early goals and all that. Unfortunately their business model is to rely on the kindness of others (make that just one other). This of course makes them independent (of the need to gather and investigate news stories, that is). And Attard swears that she has no idea about where to find a revenue stream. Try to , you know, report the news dear, but you better clear it with editor-in-chief Wood first, and only after he clears it with Mad Bob.

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  18. What i don't understand Professor is why has the identity of the reporter who asked Tony Abbott the original question on Australia day remained anonymous?

    Surely even Tony Abbott knows the identity of this person.

    Does anyone know who it was? I understand they were acting on behalf of another journalist in Canberra.

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    1. She's not. Check Tim Blair's site.

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  19. at the risk of Goodwin's-lawing this one: Goebbels would be proud of the Canberra Press gallery.

    And yes to the few courageous voices like the Prof and Bolt and Henderson and Devine and Albrechtson (sorry if I forget some): DONT LET THIS SCANDAL BE MURDERED, it needs to come out in the open to reach even those whose only pre-programmed chanels are on (our..HA!) ABC

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  20. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.February 13, 2012 at 9:46 PM

    Perhaps Gina or someone else with cash and clout could start throwing some financial and organisational encouragement at writing that recognises the value of enterprise in wealth creation. Such awards would demonstrate that it is entirely possible to provide social and economic reportage and arguments beyond the leftist mindset of the current crop of journalism graduates. A scheme that was well-organised and backed by authoritative journalistic peers it might even set the current crop thinking, exploring, changing and doing some genuine investigation instead of producing one-sided political beat-ups and societal whinging, or sitting on a scoop because of peer groupthink.

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  21. "The very word "secrecy" is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret
    oaths and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the
    dangers which are cited to justify it."

    JFK

    Same speech where he also said journalists perform an essential function - although he meant actual journalists who hold those in power to account without fear or favour, as opposed to cryptofascist lickspittles of one party states masquerading as democratic governments.

    Bitter irony that the Mighty Wurlitzer went into overdrive with his own assassination and the coopted media have plagued us ever since.

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  22. Hugh boy knows where his bread's buttered. He's not stupid, he just looks it.

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