Thursday, November 15, 2012

Tim Palmer and the "Tedium" of Prostate Cancer

IN COMMENTING on the imminent Royal Commission into the sexual abuse of children, Andrew Bolt quotes a little snippet from ABC quality journalist Tim Palmer's interview with one of Cardinal Pell's clerical critics.

Ah, Tim, such memories! It is quite a few years since the ABC high-flier has dropped a line to the Billabong, but Andrew's reference brought the memories flooding back. As a guide to the perspective and sympathies that will shape ABC coverage of what promises to be an extended bout of Papist-thumping, here is what Tim had to say in his spirited and entirely unsolicited defence of an institution far more curious than the Catholic Church, Margo Kingston, who was then doing so much for Fairfax's credibility at her original Web Diary:

Dear Stanley
Time was when tedious right wing crackpots would shuffle off to a cabin in Montana, form a militia and (mercifully) barricade the rest of the world outside.

Now they set up the grownup's version of the lemonade stand - a weblog.

I never thought I'd side with Mr Sheridan on anything but your piece on the virtues of colonialism has achieved that.

I haven't laughed so hard since I read Paul Johnson's Modern Times (obviously a seminal text for you) with its dunderheaded central issues like "who was the better President, Nixon or Reagan?".

So how did I get to your Sargasso Sea of ideas - via Crikey of course. But don't be too encouraged by Mayne's reference, I, and I suspect most others, won't be back.

You write about Margo Kingston's log "It’s like watching some poor unfortunate have an almost-daily seizure. You should turn away, and you know it. But it’s impossible to drag your eyes off the spectacle".

Unfortunately the same can't be said of your site. It's more like watching someone die of prostate cancer. It's tedious, the viewer may die of something else in the meantime and in the long run you just don't want to know about it anyway.


Tim Palmer

When you read, watch or listen to the latest news it is always nice to know a little about about the sort of people who shape it.



  1. I do so hope Timmy never has to watch someone die of prostate cancer. Far from being tedious it is heart wrenching to watch a friend slowly and painfully quit this earth. But then again perhaps a good pull through with the old wire brush much favoured by army doctors many years ago would give him some perspective on life outside his delusional self righteousness.

  2. inspired by Patreus, Tim is continuing his longstanding affair with Mrs Palm under the desk. I believe his biography is to be entitled 'its all in already!'

  3. Being one of nature's proofreaders, shouldn't that be 'Prostate', and not 'Prostrate' - although with someone like Tim Palmer, one wonders.

  4. What a sneering and callous git. How is it that so many of Palmer's ilk are such frightful people?

  5. The Old and Unimproved DaveNovember 15, 2012 at 1:59 PM

    Tim Palmer has all the crudity of Chaucer without the concomitant elegance of prose.

  6. You may take cancer lying down Prof, but I don't think that's what your headline is intended to convey :)

    1. Type in haste, live with the shame. Now fixed, jasbo, and many thanks for the proofing.

  7. Frankly I think this Royal Commission is a joke, and if it succeeds in crossing the line and forcing secular will onto the church, then Australia will enter a new era of statist misery.
    Because make no mistake, it will not end with the confessional once the button has been pressed.
    But bloody hell, the Catholic Church has been painting itself into this corner for a good long time. All this non theological nonsense they enforce - celibrate priests, confession - I mean really, what? On a hiding to nothing with the social costs and nothing to gain theologically, spiritually, or even practically.

    1. You must be thinking of the Greens Party.


  8. One aspect in this matter is this: if Priests are made by this royal commission to fess up if someone confesses to whatever, wouldn't the same standard apply to doctors and lawyers?

    And, in the OZ today, someone wrote that the Church could direct priests to give an absolution conditional on a penance, that is, going to the police about it: with the absolution not applying if the penance wasn't completed.

    1. the church is built on 'forgive and forget', be reconciled, move on, all have sinned, make restitution and recompense where possible.

      The entire Western World's Jurisprudence was built on One on One mediation and discretion being the better part of ....... .

      well wasn't that "sohhhhhhh yesterday"!

      Prof. I had a moment of inspiration. Canberra could have its very own Brand New World Class Attraction and set a new bench mark for other nations to follow.

      The Survivors of Misogyny Hall of Fame.

      A museum dedicated to leaders who suffered most and overcame the smears and repression.
      The first Inductee could be Doctor Carmen Lawrence; somewhere discretely in an agora type rose garden a quiet little plaque could be erected for Penny Easton as well.

      Other inductees could be Joan Kirner, Christine Nixon, and our very own, Barak has no idea how tough it is Prime Minister.

      The Misogyny Survivors Hall of Fame would be a bit like the Holocaust Museum or Dachau - only it would be a bit more of emotionally riven, a more serious thing, more reverential of the price these great women have paid.

      I think Penny would like that. Knowing what they all went through. Someone should remember.

    2. You either forgot the sarcasim tag on this or you are seriously sick and delusional to compare a list of failed female "leaders" with the horrors of the Holocaust or Dachau as being anywhere near the same.

    3. David not all of us need hypertext tags to augment already perfectly clear text.

  9. I think that, of all the average Lefty's many faults, one condemns them more than the rest combined. Just as a miser who is also greedy winds me up, so too does the Lefty who claims to hold moral superiority over the rest of us while demonstrating an ugly disregard for the actual, real-world welfare of other humans - provide they are conservatives.

    A truly ugly combination that reeks of hypocrisy.

  10. This Royal Commission will be working through complex and subtle legal, theological, social and cultural issues while trying to adjust for the relativity and changes in community standards over 60-odd years. The challenges and ramifications for Australian society will be profound and very hard to anticipate; but it is a chance in a generation to confront a great evil.

    You would like to think that it will be set up sensitively, with great wisdom and foresight.
    Unfortunately, you know it will be set up as a political circus by the idiot Roxon.


  11. Wasn't the root cause of the Heiner Affair reports of abuse of children, or a child, in state care in Queensland, with a subsequent government cover up? Is this likely to re-emerge during this Royal Commission?

    Perhaps Gillard is trying to kill two birds with one stone. Abbott's reputation will be damaged due to his association with the Catholic Church, and her other challenger, Rudd, will be running for cover.

    If this happens, Bryce may also land in hot water. It will be interesting to see how strong the ties are between the Emily's Listers. Will Gillard sacrifice Bryce to get rid of Rudd?

  12. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.November 18, 2012 at 10:51 AM

    Hey Prof, I'd prefer your Sargasso Sea to anything offered up by the left luvvie crew. It's Ezra Pound of course, isn't it? "Your mind and you are our Sargasso Sea". I've always loved that line. I just checked Wikipedia for the back story of the term. It was a strange place in the Atlantic ocean where early Portuguese sailors felt their adventuring to America deepening strange, I guess more numinous and mysterious.

    Your posts are like fine wine, Prof, great varietals, with many elements, much appreciated by the cognoscenti many who visit here to stay and enjoy. Keep them coming, please.

    The general message for us all is Carpe Diem, Prof, and to hell with the likes of Dim Tim throwing cancers around like malevolent confetti.

  13. The trouble with SA is that most people have forgotten that it exists.
    Ted Mullighan (of happy memory) conducted an enquiry into sexual mistreatment of wards of State, and others in State care. It took a lot longer than forecast for the enquiry to complete its work.
    Maybe many of the answers are in the report of that enquiry; and there is much to be learnt from it as to how to run such an enquiry - if we need one at all.
    I think it started in the mid 2000s, and ran for 5 or 6 years.