Election Reaction: The Media’s Tantrum
Elections always bring about diverse reactions. One side is typically overjoyed at victory, while the other is disappointed in defeat. In a two-sided contest, such disparate reactions are the order of the day. In a healthy system, transitions of power are peaceful.
Looking at recent history, however, this trend is fading. Consider 2016 and the famous Women’s March. Consider the so-called ‘resistance Liberals’ who objected to Trump’s ‘tone’ and lack of ‘civility’. In addition, consider the 2020 reaction with the great lie that is the ‘stolen election’.
To prove that Australia is not immune from this frankly hysterical reaction to electoral defeat, I want to look at the media’s reaction to the ALP’s recent victory. The reaction can be described as nothing short of a tantrum. There is a clear and unsubtle subtext of ‘Listen, you peasants, no one said you could vote Labor’.
The Usual Suspects, Part One: Sky News
In a response that shocked precisely no one, Sky so-called News responded to a democratic loss with a few gems. Keep in mind, these are the ‘hard truth’ people who ‘tell it like it is’. Not those overly emotional leftie cucks who yell about their feelings and cry when things do not go their way. After Dark host Paul Murray came out with this absolute pearler in response to the result:
Ok, in order. Resistance against what? The will of the majority of the voters, who rejected your increasingly hard-right party and their cruel politics? You never get to talk about democracy again, you flaming hypocrite. Oh, you love sacred democracy, as long as it generates the correct result. Also, the mad left? Really, the mad left. So anyone who dares to vote for anyone other than the LNP is a ‘mad leftie’ from whom the country must be taken back. Seems legitimate. Finally, that phrase at the bottom of the screen does not mean what you think it means. You think it means resistance to the mad left. But at face value, that sentence reads that a resistance of the mad left begins now. To paraphrase George Carlin, learn the language we have all agreed upon, you clown.
The Usual Suspects, Part Two: The ABC
There are many voices from the right on the ‘left-leaning’ ABC, a statement the election coverage utterly blew out of the water. One of the most prominent is renowned right-wing hack Andrew Probyn, who had this to say concerning Anthony Albanese:
Does the contempt for voters and the elitism not simply ooze off that statement? In other words, ‘Albo appeals mostly to stupid peasants who do not know their place’. Remember too that these clowns hate elitists, otherwise known as people who can read. But you live in a democracy, remember. You can vote any way you like as long as ‘the right people’ get into power. But sacred democracy is the most important thing, remember. Garbage. Total, utter and complete garbage. As I have long suspected, for Tories, the word ‘democracy’ is a mere buzzword for ‘the status quo which benefits us and our corporate masters’. Get that garbage outta here!
The Usual Suspects, Part Three: Lord (Lady?) Downer
I wanted to end the institutional tantrum that is the reaction to a Labor Party election victory by looking at a statement from former Foreign Minister Alexander Downer. He said
I don’t always think the voters are right and in Kooyong I think they were profoundly wrong in voting out Josh Frydenberg. I think it is a huge national mistake.
Once again we see the contempt for the peasants, a group best understood as anyone who dares to not vote for the LNP. Nothing brings voters onside quite like saying they are profoundly wrong. But the most amusing part is the idea that the ousting of Josh Frydenberg, a single member in one electorate, was a ‘national mistake’. It was an entirely local decision. So not only was it not national, it was not a ‘mistake’ either. This is not merely because I wanted to see the back of old Joshy, but a result in an election cannot, by definition, be a mistake. It was the will of the voters. To borrow from Paul Keating, how you going over there Curly? You old darling? Clod
Conclusion: An Institutional Tantrum
The Labor Party won the 2022 election by some considerable margin. Based on the reactions of various parts of the media, this was not planned. Whether it is Sky, the ABC or any other media figure in the mainstream, the reaction to this democratic election going a certain way may be accurately characterised as a tantrum. Both the Liberal Party and their media allies are nothing but brats in suits. Power is their toy and they should never have to share it. Mummy and Daddy (the electorate in this analogy) made them share it here, and so they are stamping their feet and screaming and crying like the pampered brats they are.
This response, as pathetic as it is, does provide useful insight into the institutional bias in this country. A party with repugnant ideas, which should have gone by the wayside years ago, is propped up by the media, now including the National Broadcaster. For the Labor Party to win government, it has to combat the media as well as the Liberal Party. The fact that the party which represents the workers has been in power roughly 30% of the time in the last seventy years says much about the institutional bias in favour of the LNP.
But back to the plot. The media has shown itself utterly incapable of doing its job. Indeed, the incompetence of the Fourth Estate has given rise to what Giordano of The Juice Media called The Fifth Estate. People like us here at The AIMN, Independent Australia, Alan Austin, Friendlyjordies, The Echidna and others. Just ordinary citizens doing actual critical reporting of government and media. We may never replace the Fourth Estate, but we are far closer to the people than those elitists will ever be. Soldier on, my friends.
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27 commentsLogin here Register here
Thanks, Dr Tim Jones; for starters, Sky news Australia is a traitor to the people of Australia, & don’t you forget it.
The smug Paul Murray has the compelling nature of a day old dog turd left in one’s front garden.
The defenders of Liberal/National repugnance will soon become a threatened species of which no one wants to see its numbers increase.
The best interest of Australia’s people is to sensibly lobby for the return of the social welfare budgets cancelled by the Lib/Nat Cane-toads.
Then, the sensible concessions for the deserving people that had been introduced by the former Labor government.
Treat our new Prime Minister with the dignity he deserves, for he is our saviour from the scorn and the wrath of the Scomo L/N party reptilae.
I really enjoyed this, Tim. A great read.
Of course Old Curly would say that, wouldn’t he? Lord Downer, the dolt son of the dynastic to the manor born family of mother country emigres made good in colonial Adelaide,father and grandfather political animals both. A silver-spooner of classical mould, educated in England and at Geelong Grammar, he lived a life immersed amid the elite of this country’s conservatives and would have absorbed the political philosophies that so deeply defined the core of the modern Menzie Liberals. Kooyong, he would have argued, was indelibly Liberal, by right. How dare the plebeians assert otherwise, and default their vote to a mere commoner, and a woman no less!
Just as he would have asserted this country’s rightful prerogative to the bugging of the East Timor chambers in the context of a midnight grab for an unfair share of the Timor Gap oil & gas fields.
I’ve met people of his ilk; they tend to have a quite blinkered perspective of how life actually is for the majority. He might not quite be in the same class as the blithering idiots of the British aristocracy, but he’s in that direction, so to speak. Old Curly, of the lace stockings, looking down at the heathens and proles and sneering.
Yeah, thanks for that Tim,this bullshit has been going on for years and obviously has progressively become more insultingThat these fuckwits could consciously support the Lying Nasty Party led ? by an unhinged,egotistical serial liar with no known redeeming features, speaks volumes about their judgement, and damns those in said party who claim to be ‘moderates’.The full horrors of their misbegotten reign are yet to be revealed.
Williambtm…a day old dog turd is infinitely more appealing….and not as smelly.
Australians need to start paying attention. Our democracy is under threat and it not from a invading marauding nation. Its from within. Our democracy is being stolen right under our noses by billionaire media barons and mining magnates fulfilling their own self interests that do not benefit the majority of the Australian people. That is not how a true and proper democracy works. Its not what those who made the ultimate sacrifice fought for. We are a lesser people and a corrupted nation for this interference. While politics can be boiled down to the integrity and character of the parties, perhaps it is not just the integrity and character of the political parties that are in question. It is also the integrity and character of main stream media journalists reporting on those political parties that is also in question. Biased, prejudicial and suspect journalism is undermining our democracy. Journalists are not ment to make partisan political statements dressed up as questions or make unbalanced subjective reports across media outlets.
Democracy is being gamed by influential right wing legacy media that is also manipulating social media played to benefit big business. Those of us engaged in the civic debate don’t pay attention to the hermetically sealed information sphere of the radicalising Right. We don’t understand that there is a borderless global nation sharing panic and fear and unhinged theories to the gullible.This is the group of people who brought Trump flags and wrote appeals to US constitutional Amendments on their Australian posters.Their civic education is formed in international Facebook or Telegram echo chamber chat rooms that are being manipulated by the likes of Murdoch and Palmer that only benefit Murdoch and Palmer and their business interests. If businesses pay large amounts of money to “influencers” to gain advantage over their competition then how much is the influence of the L/NP turd polishing media outlets of Murdoch, 7 , 9, ABC and money from billionaires like Palmer worth to the L/NP? The Main Stream Media are a life support system and cheer squad for a side of politics that has decimated Democracy. The MSM is the problem not the solution. Advertising with these media outlets should be counted as political donations to the L/NP.
For me the peach of Downer’s conceit and entitlement was when Kevin Rudd spoke perfect Mandarin to a Chinese government delegation. The Chinese were pleasantly surprised. What did Downer say about this (or words to the effect)…’that’s nothing, I can speak French’. Except there were no French nationals present. Another example of white racism and supremacy.
The NT showed a hiccough to your excellent post, Tim, when the editor of the NT News favoured the labor party and indicated a labor government will be better for us. It was a shock to read it but it reflected a letter page that had been fairer than the local ABC.
We now have 4 politicians: The lower house will have lovely man returning for a record 2nd term, with an equally lovely woman ex-NT politician.
The senate will boast of two talented strong Aboriginal women.
How about that, we are represented by 3 Aboriginal women and a returned soldier.
old bloke I have a couple staunch labor retired teachers who were ready with questions on education at an electorate meeting when downer was education minister. An aide came onto the stage and said the minister will not be taking questions on education. The gutless prick probably saw a packed room and suspected they were teachers so he wimped out.
For me his comment that public school students are thugs sticks in my craw.
When Downer’s daughter was defeated by Rebeka Sharkie he made a comment to the effect that too many of the wrong people had moved into the electorate. An arrogant prick.
This wise lady gets it right:
Dutton, a bowel brained bullshit bonking bastard, is getting some comtrived media attention, because he is on the side of friendly donors, greedy patrons, primitives, brown shirt hansonites, loudmouthed losers and louts, vacuum craniums from Queensland the old Kanaka coercing enslavers, and, a group of media maggots, Merde Dog centred, that demand imperious unquestioning supremacy and submission of the peasant mass to go on profiteering in a ring of filth and fleecers and frauds. Dutton is shit painted turdery and a low level pseudo human, below the level of a worm’s willy. Far Kem All!!!
I grew up in England with a conservative mother and a father who was Labour.
I learned to see both sides of the argument.
The Tories put the country’s needs first, while Labour prioritised the people’s needs.
Balance requires both.
But only in times of war or disaster can the people’s needs be ignored.
Another excellent and perceptive article Tim. Congratulations.
And congratulations to excellent comments from some of the usual suspects such as ajogrady, harry lime, wam and others.
On matters 5th, I my thoughts, as a member of ABC Friends (formerly known as Friends Of The ABC)
that I will become a 5th Columnist in The Fourth Estate.
I am appalled at the infiltration into the ABC of right wing hacks with poor journalistic standards and ethics.
The idea sickens me of reporters and announcers or anchors as ‘media stars’ or ‘media personalities’ , Marshall McClunes’ (sic) statement that ‘the medium is the message’, is being fulfilled but should be rejected.
Of course ABC funding must be restored and enhanced. Not forgetting SBS.
State and regional programming on TV must be brought back.
Community service functions (eg disaster information services) and International broadcasting (Radio Australia, Australian TV overseas all must be enhanced.
Radio infrastructure needs upgrading.
ABC tv channels need to be sorted out.
A parliamentary channel for reporting federal parliament, not just question time (mostly waste of time),
estimates committee reporting and anything else available for viewing from the public galleries of the House and the Senate. BBC apparently does some of this in the UK parliament.
It could result in improved behaviour by the bludgers on the benches.
As the Vogons said „resistence is useless”… I often wonder if Douglas Adams was right, way before his time… remember the Main Dish of the Day, that came out and introduced itself, before helpfully pointing out it’s more apetizing aspects, before throwing itself on the grill in „Restaurant at the End of the Universe”? K
If people like Alexander Downer had their way, they would try to limit who votes to those who agree with their distorted view of the world, as we see happening in numerous states of the USA.
As Barack Obama said : I wish in the US we had Australia’s gun laws, Australia’s healthcare system and Australia’s (compulsory) voting system.
I see that Downer was on ABC’s Q&A last night : I missed it but was he asked about the Timor Leste government offices bugging on his watch and his subsequent paid consultancy with Woodside ?
An excellent article Tim, thank you. The born-to-rules have been with us for too many decades and believe it is their birth right to control government and ”the masses” for their own personal benefit.
I move the motion that herewith, that Spuddo aka Benito Duddo aka all other definitive labels for the Leader of the Opposition apparently elect, be known as Voldermort ….. The facial likeness is uncanny.
@ Canguro: The continuing prosecution of Bernard Colleary is evidence that the born-to-rules will do everything to protect ”their good name” especially when it involves screwing over neighbouring countries and possible treason.
We saw this strategy previously used when Drunken Duncan unsuccessfully crossed HMAS Voyager in front of HMAS Melbourne and his father’s defence destroyed Voyager’s 2OC Peter Crabbe’s career plus withheld compensation for the injured seamen on both vessels for about 40 years.
@ PP: Another classic description.
@ Bruce White: I share you sympathies and concerns re the ABC. The new generation reporters have majored in Yellow Journalism to make any ABC job interview panel. But is it true that getting a job at the ABC requires a current membership of the Liarbral Party?
Does Ita Buttrose intend to rename the ABC as ”All Bullshit Corporation”?
Does this mean that New England will have an early bye-election?
The arrogant, self-important and totally irrelevant and insignificant weasel, Downer, can scream, cry and throw a tantrum as much as he likes, the large majority of Australians have spoken and it looks like the Snivelling Superficial Snob, who will only be remembered for his lack of discernment in donning black fishnet stockings, is just going to have to bend over to the WILL of the majority of intelligent Australians! Clearly, everyone who is more informed, more humane, more egalitarian and intellectually superior to Dutton, Paul Murray, Morrison, Abbott and the war criminal, John Howard – which is just about 99.9% of anything with a pulse – have had an absolute gut full of the relentless corruption, ongoing remorseless lies, insufferable arrogance and malevolence exhibited by the Abbott/Morrison and Dutton regime!
The FACT is that the LNP have, single-handedly, dragged our nation into the worst debt in history … a whopping deficit amounting to $1 TRILLION due to the LNP’s appalling mismanagement of Job Seeker and Job Keeper funding that ended up feeding the rich at the expense of the poor! Australians have become so heartily sick to the back teeth with the LNP’s general ineptitude and scandalous waste and have grown so weary of the heartless cruel attacks perpetrated by the callous right-wing elitists against the poorest, most vulnerable people in our community! For decades, the malignant LNP have formed a dangerously undemocratic and totally depraved alliance with their monstrous Propaganda Minister, Rupert Murdoch (a totally corrupt, internationally-condemned predator who once faced criminal prosecution for phone tapping) and the absolutely appalling neoliberal capitalists in the IPA. Together, the disreputable LNP/Murdoch/IPA Alliance then contrived to eagerly, and despicably, take the first step into fascism by then infiltrating just about EVERY form of media in the country – including our taxpayer-funded ABC – with corrupted right-wing sycophants who achieved NOTHING but parroting the remorseless lies, callous propaganda and shallow slogans vomited up by the morally bankrupt psychopaths and pathological liars in the LNP!
There still remains a shocking array of shrieking, absolutely nauseating, racists, skirt-lifting misogynistic, thoroughly pretentious and callously inhumane LNP puppets in the Z-rated gutter sewer of SkySpews, 2GB, and the right-wing-extremist puppets parachuted by the LNP into OUR taxpayer-funded ABC in order to control the narrative: ex-SkyNews grub David Speers, the shamefully biased and deluded Stan Grant, Leigh Sales, the truly vile Fauziah Ibrahim, Patricia Karvelas and others …. some of whom (like half-price-Sales) are now fleeing the ABC with their tails between their legs! Good riddance!
The FIRST thing Albanese needs to do is to clean out the sewer of our media and rid the ABC of the above named LNP sycophants who helped promote the propaganda, lies and hateful rhetoric of the worst, most corrupt and dangerously undemocratic regime in our history! One of the worst, cruellest and most malignant of their kind was the unspeakably corrupt, sadistic psychopath, Peter Dutton, whom the LNP – a regime completely bereft of anyone with a single redeeming feature – have now ensconced into the role of their next leader! God help us if that blood-curdling maniac ever becomes our next PM!
I could see the Depressant also leaning towards a system where only those who live in posh and rich postcodes get to decide who should run the country and everyone else can go jump.
Well, gosh, wow, gee whiz. How unexpected.
Been out and busy (mainly bushwalking) since last Friday, so finding out what’s happened has been a steep learning curve. But a good one.
The morning caffeine has been a toast to the door hitting ScoMoFo’s arse on the way out, and hitting it hard.
Now to clean up the mess.
The Australian is truly a gutter rag
Democracy, if it is to be revived and to flourish effectively in Australia, needs to have a free unbiased media led by a taxpayer funded source of truthful complete information, legislated and enforced by rules that must be obeyed by anyone who works for the public broadcaster.
That means that there has to be a root and branch overhaul of the ABC, its personnel, administration and funding.
Consequently, mealy mouthed Butter and rose and the rest of the motley crew supposedly presenting the news and current affairs will have to go. Where will they go ? Back to where they came from, Murdoch’s bullshitting media organization !! They can then indulge themselves to their black heart’s content, but not on taxpayers expense.
Australia is not the private domain of media magnates, entitled pricks ( Lord Downer etc), corrupt politicians and their political parties, and even more corrupt businessmen.
I like that photo, it’s humanises Albo far more than the confected and staged bullshit that we kept seeing from Scummo week in and month out. That picky from The Shitstralian could backfire on them.
The election outcome demonstrates exactly how impotent the traditional media is
It appears that its main consumers of it are those that disagree
Good article Tim, re comments here, everyone sees through the game being played by an elite-friendly cry-baby-media on a mission to reinstall their preferred party. How do well-paid editors, journos and newreaders not see that they are supporting the slow demise of society, or can they, and they just don’t give a fuk.
ajogrady, true, if journos want to have a role beyond being the most gullible parrots for the most stupid arguments on the block, they need to grow up and take some agency for what they are promoting.
All the comments on Twitter agree with you.
Holy moly! The PM looks like me just after rising.
I can relate to that image.
Dear Ms Lee, I returned to Sydney in 2013, after working in Asia for some 20 years. I had occasion to buy and read a copy of The Australian when having a coffee one morning, in Maroubra. It was the last copy of the publication I bought, indeed read. I found it hard to comprehend how, somehow, rational people could read the editorial pieces, or the political reporting, with any sense of seriousness, or gaining of knowledge and value. I have since moved back to North East Asia, missing the worst of Morrison’s tenure, but keep in touch with Australian news.
How a newspaper such as The Australian has managed to set the political discourse, the boundaries between which Australia’s vision must move, has amazed me. Murdoch has proved to be nothing more than a canker in all the countries he has businesses in.