You’re
an incompetent, hectoring, ham-fisted minister who panders to racism
and downward envy while still suffering from delusions that you
represent small “l” liberal views. What do you do when you have a
kinder, gentler announcement to make? Why, you go trotting off to the
Spencer Street Soviet.

Look at the front page of today’s Age. See the lead story, Detainees to cast off from Nauru.

“Four
years in offshore detention is about to end for almost all the
remaining asylum seekers on Nauru after Amanda Vanstone decided
yesterday to bring them to Australia,” Michael Gordon writes. “The
Immigration Minister will announce today that 25 of the last 27 asylum
seekers will leave the cash-strapped island, possibly within 10 days,
after 13 were found to be refugees.”

Forget about the ethics of
bribing a dodgy government to keep people locked up for a few years on
a clapped out fertiliser mine for your own short term political
advantage. Minister Mandy has handed over a story and got a sympathetic
run in the house journal of the nation’s limp latte left – also handily
the hometown paper of some of the nation’s most prominent refugee
advocates, people like Julian Burnside and Pamela Curr, not to
mention the biggest thorn in her side from her own party, Petro
Georgiou.

And, whaddya know, it’s worked. Page one and running on the wire is an item slugged 9:56 Eastern Time “Praise for ‘end of Pacific Solution’.”

Dealing
with journos is like dealing with toddlers. Spoonfeeding’s much tidier.
Better that than letting them make a meal of you.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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