Aug 31, 2011
Andrew Bolt’s article today is potentially the largest collection of weasel words ever assembled in one place. There’s innuendo, guilt by association and victimhood, all neatly packaged up with a new attack on a PM who Andrew is ideologically opposed to.
Bolt’s attempt to link News Limited’s decision to pull a story that they admit contained inaccuracies and the media enquiry proposed by the Greens is pathetic.
Whether Gillard specifically mentioned the threat of an inquiry in her “multiple” calls to News Limited executives I do not know.
I suspect that you’d need to dig a pretty big hole to bury all of the things that Andrew Bolt does not know, but feels free to speculate about.
… it appears as if she pulled strings and, with threats of inquiries and forced sales left hanging in the air, sought to shut down a debate.
It appears as if The Australian pulled a story because they realised that they would have had no grounds to defend themselves if a defamation suit was brought against them, and now Bolt is making excuses for them.
Now the victimhood:
Not being able to report on what I consider improper pressure by a desperate Prime Minister to kill a story meant I could not report fairly on the political scene as I saw it.
So ringing the Editor in Chief of a newspaper that has published falsehoods about you is improper pressure? I wonder how far down that principle applies?
… I asked her about attempts she’d made to shut down debate over the past few days and whether she’d discussed in her calls to Chris Mitchell an inquiry into the media.
It’s funny how Andrew is so keen to have discussions with the PM, while his colleagues at the Australian didn’t see any point seeking comment on Milne’s now discredited article.
I was under instructions not to comment on this myself, after I wrote about it on my blog on Saturday, until further legal advice was received.
And yet on Monday he quoted Milne’s article at length. Who would have thought that could lead to problems?
The questioning of the PM’s judgement is completely disingenuous. Andrew fails to explain how Gillard should have made a judgement about the character of a person based on information that even he concedes she was unaware of. By Andrew’s logic, every woman in Australia who’s ever had a relationship with someone who turned out to be a dickhead has questionable judgement because of their inability to know this before hooking up. It’s complete and utter nonsense.
This whole sorry episode has nothing to do with free speech, if anything it looks like News Ltd trying to see how far they could push before the Prime Minister pushed back.