The headline of Crikey’s lead item on The Howard Factor
yesterday was false, mischievous and gratuitously provocative. MUP, in
its 80-year history, has been proud to contribute to public debate
about contemporary political culture. We are a bipartisan publisher;
all views from across the political spectrum are welcome.

My discussions with the editor of The Howard Factor, Nick Cater, were to do with ensuring that the book took advantage of the full complement of The Australian’s
stable of writers. The book sets out to analyse John Howard’s
phenomenal success. That is a question of importance whatever one’s
political persuasion. In that context, it was a pity that commentators
such as Michael Costello were not included.

It was in the
normal course of the author-publisher relationship that such issues
were raised. I would have been negligent to have done otherwise. In the
final analysis, the views of our authors are precisely that – we are
merely handmaidens to their creativity. MUP has had a productive
relationship with News Limited; they have been excellent co-publishers
in this venture, and we look forward to a long association.

CRIKEY: Our headline yesterday did overstate Louise Adler’s concerns detailed in the article. Apologies to her and MUP.