We are at that moment in the election cycle (and given that we have a Labor Government, much to the consternation of a compliant right-wing mainstream media) that we can expect the said media to ramp up its attack on how hellish the Government is while promoting Tony Abbott and his team as political deities. Nothing is more certain. Their efforts to date – as toxic as they are – will pale in comparison to the venom we can expect over the coming months.
Those of the Fifth Estate (social and independent media) are also ramping up an attack, collectively, but with the opposing message: the Labor Government has performed extraordinarily well and the possibility of an Abbott led government will deliver dire social and economic consequences, the likes of which this country haven’t seen for many decades. And may themselves take many decades to recover from.
Those people wise enough to follow the writings of the Fifth Estate at the exclusion of the Fourth Estate (the mainstream media) could not have helped but notice the flood of articles holding the current opposition and their media mates to account. Only the Fifth Estate are providing a true picture of what an Abbott Government would mean to most Australian families, while themselves being gobsmacked at the media’s reluctance to actually ask a simple question of Abbott for fear of the (half-hearted) answer deterring the nurtured voters.
Over the last few days some brilliant articles about the reality of the incompetent media and the prospect of an Abbott Government have been published. I have picked six of the best from sites other than those on The Australian Independent Media Network site that deserve, nay, demand wide coverage. They are all a MUST read. They are all a MUST share.
Here they are, in no particular order with some selected, and hopefully, enticing quotes:
The Political Sword: Political hatred: its genesis and its toll by Ad astra who writes:
Abbott has always maintained that he should have been PM, that the Gillard Government is illegitimate, and that he would do everything in his power to bring it down, something he envisaged would be easy and swift, and The Lodge his by Christmas. That was two Christmases ago, and with each passing day his anger heightened and his campaign of vilification intensified.
Before any of you tell me that politics is a rough and tumble business, that conflict is at its very centre, that such hatred is the norm, reflect on when you have previously seen such intense hatred. We all remember the unpleasant things that were said about some of John Howard’s policies, about some of his statements, about some of his ideological positions, about some of his reversals – ‘core and non core promises’ – even about his eyebrows, but can you recall such a level of hatred, such vitriolic hatred, being expressed? Older readers will remember some of Paul Keating’s colourful language, but can you recall him emitting hatred such as has been directed to Julia Gillard?
I have not witnessed such hatred as we now hear in the language that Opposition members and some commentators use, and see in the angrily contorted faces of Tony Abbott, Christopher Pyne, Joe Hockey, Julie Bishop and other Opposition members in parliament and in interviews.
The Failed Estate: Damned Lies and Journalism by Mr Denmore:
The sheer volume of this muck prompts one to ask where journalists stand. For instance, we constantly see deceitful scare stories about public debt, devoid of context. In the case of this boogeyman, the News Ltd scribblers conveniently leave out that to ensure a liquid bond market, gross debt will rise if government issuance is kept at a set ratio to the economy (as requested by APRA, the RBA and other key institutions). They ignore that our net debt is among the lowest in the OECD, and they will ritually overlook that, in the eyes of bodies like the IMF, our debt is of no concern at all. These are facts. They are not ‘left-wing’ facts. They are facts.
Independent Australia: The polishing of Tony Abbott by Clint Howitt:
The intrusion of religion into politics runs counter to the traditional separation of Church and State in modern democracies, but Abbott’s statements and actions have already made it clear that his strong sectarian convictions do encroach on his political role.
Given the controversial positions he has taken on the sensitive matters of the status of women, abortion and gay relationships, it must be of great concern to people affected by these issues that the hard-won gains are likely either to freeze, or worst still, wind them back, under an Abbott government.
Again on Independent Australia: Tony Abbott’s 12 biggest budget reply porkie pies, a gem by Alan Austin:
Observers aware of Australia’s extraordinary economy were stunned to hear Opposition leader Tony Abbott’s budget reply speech on Thursday.
Never so many implied falsehoods, bare-faced hypocrisies and blatant lies in the one presentation since … well . . . since Abbott’s speech at the IPA dinner in April.
Would this be the end of Phoney Tony? Could any leader survive the media onslaught after a hubristic homily with such huge hypocrisies?
Well, not only was media reaction completely devoid of fulmination against the fibs, but it seemed none had even been detected. Somewhat bizarre.
Politically Homeless: Manufacturing Base by Andrew Elder:
This is the point where companies are starting to make investment decisions about the next financial year, and to make long-term decisions for the rest of the decade. We’re at the point where the Coalition should start looking like a confident alternative government, rather than like a bunch of chancers riding their luck. Late last year, The Australian‘s Paul Kelly declared that the Coalition had fifty fully-costed policies ready to go: it’s increasingly clear this isn’t the case, and could well be for Kelly what assertions about Iraqi WMDs were to Colin Powell.
On Turn Left 2013: Tony Abbott announces the Oprah Winfrey of budget replies: You can have free money and You and You, the author writes:
What we witnessed from Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott was the Oprah Winfrey of campaign launches. You can have free money, and you, and you, and you…
Unfortunately Tony was pointing to the Gallery, where his family were watching from, and Gina Rinehart, who was also watching.
Tony’s speech was designed to satisfy only 3 people: Gina Rinehart, Rupert Murdoch, Tony Abbott.
[Correction: Thursday night was a budget reply, not a campaign launch]
The feedback to the Budget Reply was a little like an episode of Orpah – a buffet of everything.
Tony’s plans to scrap the carbon “tax” to save families up to $300 a year in exchange low-income Australians will lose the low-income super contribution as well as the supplementary bonus paid to people on benefits. Makes sense? Perhaps to a Coalition voter. Although, as NSW Senator Doug Cameron points out, the Liberals are far from economic geniuses.
Six great articles among dozens to choose from, and my apologies to those great social media authors and their articles not included – this time. Your turn will come. To all, keep up the great work. You’re all brilliant. You really do give the mainstream media – dare I say it – a caning.