Those viewing the post-Swindle discussion with Tony Jones would have noticed that things got a little bit fruity when it came time to throw to the audience.

One audience member went the climate change believers for relying on methodology “disproved 400 years ago” while three others accused them of running a secret Eugenics agenda. “This is Hitler’s Nazi race science!” yelled one.

Somehow, the audience seemed to be chock-a-block with members of the Citizens Electoral Council (CEC).

The CEC was originally an electoral front for the Australian League of Rights (increasingly elderly “patriots” largely concerned with Holocaust denial and Jewish conspiracies), until it was stacked by local followers of Lyndon Larouche and disagreements over the status of the Queen (ALOR loved her, the Larouchites reckon she runs an international drug empire) forced a split.

Since then, the CEC has spent most of their time losing elections (badly) and raising money (and lots of it).

The CEC is especially dark on the idea of man-made climate change. It is, they say, a fraud perpetrated by agents of the British Crown who wish to kill off billions of people. Why? Because they’re the British, you fool! They’re evil — it’s what they do!

The Larouchites much prefer the theories put forward by Swindle, because it shifts the danger from the consequences of man-made global warming, which are difficult to fight, to the dangers of genocidal global warming proponents, who can be defeated with the stroke of a pen.

So why did it seem like the audience was loaded with Larouchites?

The ABC told Crikey that viewers who contacted the station to congratulate or complain in the lead-up to the airing of the documentary were invited to apply to participate in the studio audience. A balanced mix of believers and sceptics were then selected. The ABC estimates there were around five members of the CEC in the audience of 80.

According to the Larouchites, there were 18 — three of whom were kicked out prior to the show for being “potentially disruptive”. Four of the remaining members asked questions.

As an anti-hate campaigner, I should probably be critical of the ABC for giving a platform to a group which is considered by many to be a fascistic, anti-Semitic cult. As a viewer, I was grateful for anything which spiced up the proceedings.

Click here for Part One of audience question time.

Click here for Part Two of audience question time.

Peter Fray

Inoculate yourself against the spin

Get Crikey for just $1 a week and support our journalists’ important work of uncovering the hypocrisies that infest our corridors of power.

If you haven’t joined us yet, subscribe today to get your first 12 weeks for $12 and get the journalism you need to navigate the spin.

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

JOIN NOW