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TV & Radio

Oct 1, 2012

Unsackable: why Alan Jones can say what he likes

The public might wonder why Alan Jones can get away with increasingly outrageous comments -- but with this many share options, and that many listeners, it's hard to get the Parrot to stop screeching.


Politicians are railing against him, social media is in meltdown and advertisers are pulling their spending. Yet, despite his insensitive comments about Julia Gillard’s father to the Sydney University Liberal Club, Alan Jones’ status as the king of talkback seems as assured as ever.

As Crikey hit deadline this morning, over 17,000 people had signed a change.org petition calling for 2GB to terminate Jones’ contract immediately.

Yet that’s an unlikely — almost impossible — proposition for several reasons. If any Australian media personality is unsackable, it’s Alan Jones.

Firstly, Jones is more than just an employee of the Macquarie Radio Network, which owns 2GB. Although the popular belief that he owns 20% of the company isn’t true, he is its fourth largest shareholder. When Jones re-signed with 2GB in 2008, he received 4,000,000 MRN share options as part of the deal. In August he exercised his option for a first tranche of 1,333, 334 shares, putting him behind only John Singleton, Mark Carnegie and Russell Tate in the ownership stakes.

Then there’s the Parrot’s contribution to the station’s profits. Macquarie Radio Network has only two assets: 2GB and golden oldies music station 2CH. And on 2GB, only two shows command an average audience over 80,000.

“There are two people who make the station work: Alan Jones first and Ray Hadley second,” says stockbroker Roger Colman.

Although Hadley has a bigger audience share, it was Jones who transformed 2GB from a ratings joke into a juggernaut, and it’s Jones who has the most listeners. According to the latest ratings results, 151,000 Sydneysiders are tuned in to his show at any one time. A total of 442,000 listen over a week.

It’s important to remember exactly who those listeners are when assessing the likely impact of Jones’ latest gaffe. They’re not likley to be venting their spleen on Twitter or signing online petitions.

Colman describes the relationship between Jones and his audience as a “closed and unbreakable circle”. “His key listeners are over 55, they are right wing. They agree with him that Julia Gillard is a bitch and witch. There is no mismatch between him and his listeners.”

That’s why Colman says Jones’ latest comments are a “non issue” when it comes to the long-term profitability of his show.

Jones’ biographer, Chris Masters, agrees: “His evangelical following is small but big in radio terms. They won’t be upset by what he has to say. They are true believers. I don’t think they’d be too bothered at 2GB. The fact this man has been lead news across the nation would delight them.”

Indeed, there’s no sign that being outrageous counts against radio hosts in the long term. Mazda, Telstra, Harvey Norman, Fantastic Furniture, Blackmores, Crazy John’s, Holden, Vodafone and the Good Guys pulled their sponsorship from Kyle Sandilands’ TV and radio shows last year after he vilified a female journalist. Yet despite the outrage, the Kyle and Jackie O show is back on top of the ratings with 584,000 Sydney residents tuning in every week (more than listen to Jones). And there’s no shortage of sponsors filling the ad breaks.

Cynics note that canny advertisers can get plaudits for pulling their ads when the controversy is raging, then quietly buy ad space again when the heat dies down.

Then there is Jones’ track record: he’s survived plenty of storms as turbulent than this. Remember the London loo incident? The cash for comment scandal? His role in the Cronulla riots? Calling for Gillard to be thrown out to sea in a chaff bag?

“The nation is shocked by this but I’m not a bit surprised,” Masters said. “If Jones is exposed to a broader audience, he will get a reaction like this. If the broad public see and hear what he gets up to they are appalled.” Yet after each outrage Jones bounces back more popular than before.

ABC Radio National’s Phillip Adams put it best when he told Crikey’s sister site The Power Index last year: “He is like Godzilla roaming around eating power lines. Rather than getting electrocuted, he grows stronger.”


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107 thoughts on “Unsackable: why Alan Jones can say what he likes

  1. paddy

    While Jones has survived plenty of storms before, it’s hard to know just how badly this one might damage his brand. As you say, sponsors are justly notorious for grabbing the kudos of “ditching” a problematic host, and then quietly slipping back when the fuss dies down.
    But the intensity of the latest outrage seems much greater than the previous episodes. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the coming weeks.
    Who knows, maybe social media is actually growing more powerful?
    Interesting times.

  2. michael r james

    This is why the campaign against the 2GB advertisers needs to get serious and be persistent, especially Woolworths who have carefully parsed their withdrawal of advertising to encompass only Jones not 2GB, and have a particularly disreputable role in the insults:

    [Peter Coorey, today’s SMH:
    “The jacket (made from chaf bags) was donated by Woolworths community relations manager Simon Berger, who was a preselection candidate for the federal seat of Bradfield after Brendan Nelson resigned. … A Woolworths spokeswoman told the National Times Mr Berger was at the function as a private citizen, not a company representative.”]

    Other advertisers:

    Harvey Norman
    Freedom Furniture
    Virgin Australia

  3. Venise Alstergren

    MATTHEW KNOTT: How does “”Hadley having a bigger audience share”” equal “”Jones has the most listeners?”” I’m confused.

  4. Draco Houston

    In today’s society Alan Jones can broadcast whatever he wants and get away with it. If he gets in trouble he makes a public apology, says that it was taken out of context and so on.

    It is fine that he has the opinions he holds, but to express some of them in such a crass way is very unprofessional. He can hate Julia Gillard all he wants, but saying that her father died of shame shows a complete lack of tact. He SHOULD be more clever about it.

    He can say what he wants but ‘freedom of speech’ does not shield anyone from the social consequences. People will be offended and no legal protections will soften that. While it does not always directly affect Mr Jones, a decent man would take it into consideration and not say the offensive thing at all. There are other ways to get your point across. He could have easily called Gillard a liar without involving her recently deceased father.

    In a decent society he’d be tapped on the shoulder and told to keep it civil or step away from the mic and take that crap to a blog or youtube channel where it belongs. However, the market decides that he stays and continues doing what he does and any consideration of the feelings of others are set aside.

    A shame we do not live in a world where the people who can sack Jones don’t see any reason to go beyond their legal responsibilities (retraction/apology), because today there simply isn’t one.

  5. David Allen

    “That’s why Colman says Jones’ latest comments are a “non issue” when it comes to the long-term profitability of his show”

    But, when his activities encroach on a wider audience, as in this case, and we take action against his and 2GB national sponsors, it affects the sponsors business.

    From the sponsor’s point of view, why risk alienating millions to appeal to about 150,000 low income, low intelligence Jones’ listeners?

  6. Venise Alstergren

    Alan Jones is scum, and the people who listen to him more so. If people weren’t listening to him the advertising industry wouldn’t be interested in his program.

    All the apparent outrage would be much better addressed if the old people of Sydney reined in their prurience and love of rudeness and simply switched him off.

    There appears to be a common belief among the recently wealthy that the more you bollock your beginnings, the greater become one’s achievements.

  7. matthews chris

    Rather than provide disheartening and self defeating analysis it would be better for Gideon to add his considerable brain power to working out how to deal with this grub (to use a Roy and HG term). All we have to do is find the correct frequency and the economic and demographic walls of 2GB’s Jericho will come tumbling down.

    One suggestion already made by Sarah Hanson Young (who does occasionally have good ideas) is that politicians undertake not to appear on his show- we need to capitalise on this with letters to our local members of parliament seeking their promise not to do so- and we need to publicise a list of shame of those that do appear.

    We also need to take the rage from twitter and turn it into word of mouth. The Jones demographic have relatives, friends and work mates who can speak up and start to turn around the level of public political debate in Australia.

    We should lobby our super funds to ensure they do not invest in 2GB.

    We should, if we haven’t already, sign petitions and write to adverstisers, adding that we will be watching them even when the furore is over.

    We should not give in.

  8. zut alors

    Michael RJ, thanks for the list.

    While petitions seem a fine idea and require minimal effort to join online, a far more effective protest is to telephone the sponsor directly and ask for their PR section. Sponsors will be impacted more when their telephone lines are clogged and their staff’s time is wasted in damage control. Also, the caller enjoys the satisfaction of an anti-2GB/Jones vent.

    Management will never sack him, the petition is a dud exercise. Follow the money – make a couple sponsor calls instead.

  9. Mark from Melbourne

    A low rent toe rag but unfortunately there are plenty who are like minded including John and Jeanette Howard who seem particularly taken with him. These people are genuinely amazed when you suggest he is a hate mongerer and nasty piece of work.

    So as much as I think he should be deprived of oxygen that doesn’t necessarily fix the problem.

    And good on Gillard for ignoring him. Not only does he think he can say these things but he also assumes that the PM of the day will take his calls. You cant criticise him for sheer brass.

  10. Salamander

    Well it’s not good enough. Jones is a blight on civil society. Simply boycott the advertisers if that’s the only way to get him off air.

  11. GeeWizz

    What Alan Jones said about the passing of Gillard’s father is reprehensible, but I do totally agree with him that Julia Gillard is a protected species and that the Labor Party woman brigade is trying to protect her from any criticism simply because she is female.

    Thankfully we live in a free country where we don’t often agree with comments made but as Obama said recently in his speech, we should defend the right to say them.

  12. Holden Back

    Precisely right Gee Wiz ‘criticism simply because she is female.’ is exactly what Gillard doesn’t deserve. Make substantial criticisms of her policies, but don’t simply patronise her because of her gender.

  13. Madonna

    I disagree with the notion there’s a labor Party woman brigade protecting the PM. AJ is a gender basher. He couldn’t pay me to listen to his crap.
    And your comment smells a lot like Julie Bishop’s LNP rhetoric to me.
    Just saying and exercising my right to free speech and all…

  14. Cuisle

    Alan Jones quite obviously wears teflon suits. How is it that his episode in a London public toilet several years ago is never bought up? Is it just because most people know how to behave decently even while others are able to get away with the most indecent behaviour?

  15. muncher

    He is obviously a Sontaran, just hit him on the button on his neck and the problem will go away. Simple really

  16. GeeWizz

    [“Precisely right Gee Wiz ‘criticism simply because she is female.’ is exactly what Gillard doesn’t deserve. “]

    Uhhh… you read my comment wrong.

    The Labor Kabul think that Gillard isn’t allowed to be criticised because she is a woman. Terms like Misogynist have been thrown around by the Labor Party and it’s supporters because they can’t handle the fact Gillard has been a massive failure as PM and is being criticised.

    Of course this is a standard leftwing tactic… throw around -isms and -ists words when you are losing the argument and debate. We’ve seen it time and time again.

  17. Salamander

    In the past Jones has made disgusting misogynistic remarks about Gillard which are unacceptable. On this occasion gender is not the issue, but gross rudeness and inhumanity.

  18. zut alors

    Perhaps Gee Wizz has a point about there being ‘a Labor Party woman brigade’.

    After all, there’s a plethora of women on the government’s front bench – unlike the coalition’s equal opportunity front bench which takes inspiration from the early 20th century.

  19. shepherdmarilyn

    The thing that bothers me about it is that those who laud free speech don’t like it when it is about them.

  20. Liz45

    Which is why it’s important to appeal to the companies that provide the money. Without them, there’s no 2GB! Simple!

    I was disgusted by his behaviour during the Cronulla riots – he urged Anglo-Saxon youth to assault the ‘Lebos’ etc. He did NOT even get a slap on the wrist by anyone – even the police! Anyone else who uttered such words would’ve been whipped for it! He stood in front of revolting placards during the demo near Parlt House, and obviously felt no revulsion by them? Says it all really! He’s used his venom on women in general. This person is typical of too many of his generation – we need to let them know, that such behaviour is beyond decency.

    We’ve just witnessed an outpouring of grief and solidarity over a horrific crime of violence against a young woman – for his to speak like this does nothing for the image of men as haters of women! It needs to stop!

    For some Liberals to take exception to being linked with Jones’ comments is a bit rich! Abbott is the Federal Leader of the Liberal Party, who aspires to be PM. If this situation was reversed, the Libs would be screaming for JG to condemn the comments/behaviour without exception. Alan Jones’ so called apology was a joke? Not even a Clayton’s joke at that! In itself, it was offensive!

    Abbott took 7 hours after I heard of this debacle to even make his two sentence comment. I didn’t hear his outrage at such comments; or his condemnation of raffling a chaff bag (with it’s real meaning) or anything else for that matter. He didn’t inform his youthful party members that such attitudes to women were not the liberal party way, etc. NOT ONE WORD! I’m disgusted with these hateful, ugly little men!

  21. Bill Hilliger

    Gee Whiz, under freedom of speech, is it right to ask whether its true that Alan Jones and Cory Bernardi are in some kind of alliance? I mean, some people say that likes attract, etc. What say you under freedom of speech.

  22. Liz45

    @GEE WIZZ – You conveniently forget the demands of the Opposition to JG over the Thomson affair, as though she was personally responsible/involved in it! Anything that any trade union member or leader is honed back at her – even if she was out of the country or whatever when it happened.

    IF the Libs insist on taking the high moral ground when it’s convenient for them, they should take condemnation when they’re found to be participating in disgusting and public behaviour! The fact is, that Abbott has form via his sexist and revolting behaviour. He aspires to be PM. IF he can’t show real leadership in an instance like this, he doesn’t deserve to lead the nation. Abbott thinks it’s OK to swear at female menbers of Parlt; he made a gross comment re military people in Afghanistan (“SHIT HAPPENS”)he’s made sexist remarks about women “doing the ironing” type of attitude. He shouldn’t have to be dragged into the 21st century! Over 50% of the population are female, yet men are responsible for over 90% of the violence in the community. Violent behaviours start from hateful language! Abbott has only given lessons on how to do it and get away with it!

    Thanks to the journalist with a sense of decency and courage! I haven’t agreed with a lot of things the Labor Govt is doing, but I voice them without resorting to such behaviour. Abbott and his merry band of supporters are in the gutter, and this episode hasn’t seen them climbing out of it!

  23. GeeWizz

    [After all, there’s a plethora of women on the government’s front bench – unlike the coalition’s equal opportunity front bench which takes inspiration from the early 20th century.”]

    Sorry I’ve gotta pull you up on this one despite going off-topic.

    Are you saying that the Liberal Party should be picking their front bench based on gender and not ability?

    Isn’t that… ohh whats that word again.. oh yes… s_xist?

    The left really get themselves in trouble with this tokenism rubbish, most Australians just won’t accept it.

  24. Holden Back

    No Gee Wiz, you wrote inelegantly, which allowed me to interpret you actual word in a manner other than you intended.

    Shit Happens.

  25. Liz45

    @zut alors – How often do you watch Parlt? I watch on a regular basis and I take particular note of the environment in the Parlt – sometimes I’m doing hand sewing or cutting out, but even when my head is bent, I can hear the difference when a female Govt member stands up to either ask a question or give an answer.

    I also keep an eye on the Opposition front bench and note their rudeness and interjecting particularly when a woman is speaking. Abbott displays utter rudeness when either the PM or a Govt person is speaking – he just turns his back. Sometimes he has a look of rage or hatred on his face!

    I’ve seen his attitude to journalists who have the audacity to ask a probing question/s. I have footage of such a look when Tony JOnes probed about his relationship with Pell and funds for private schools – he was forced to admit that he’d told a lie. The look on his face while the credits went up was one of sheer loathing! I don’t think he knew the camera was on him! And there’s been other occasions where he’s just walked out of a media conference with a look of rage on his face! Not leadership material in my view!

    If, when confronted with a revolting act someone I know is accused of, and if when I see or hear the situation but chose not to condemn it, then aren’t I just the same as them? The Liberal Party has shown its true colours by not condemning this behaviour. Don’t forget the raffle of the “chaff bag”? At least Woolworths is putting its position on hold – apparently the person who donated this item is a high ranked person in the company!

    Money or withdrawal of same will be the only ‘weapon’ of prevention! Sad but true!

  26. zut alors

    @ GeeWizz: ‘Are you saying that the Liberal Party should be picking their front bench based on gender and not ability?’

    No, Wizzie, that’s not even close to what I was saying. Re-read my original post – slowly, carefully and concentrate hard. Perhaps I was implying that the government doesn’t fetter talent based on being female.

    End of diversion. Back on topic.

  27. GeeWizz

    [“@GEE WIZZ – You conveniently forget the demands of the Opposition to JG over the Thomson affair, as though she was personally responsible/involved in it!”]

    Actually all they had asked her do was remove him from the Labor Party, which she refused to for 6 months until 1 day before the FWA report was released(surprise surprise).

    This woman lacks judgement… she lacks good decision making.. she constantly goes from bungle to bungle… she has a legitimacy problem and Australians don’t trust her. This is not because she is a woman, but rather because she is loose with the truth and is a poor leader.

    The best person for a job isn’t a gender or a race, rather the person with the best abilities to do the job, thats why artificial quotas and tokenistic gestures fail the commonsense test.

  28. zut alors

    LIz45, I watch Question Time every sitting day and rarely miss a trick. I used to enjoy visiting Canberra and attending in person but since 2010 the bovver boys on the coalition front bench have effectively killed off that exercise. Their nonsensical antics no longer warrant attendance.

    These days when I feel the need to dumb down I watch half an hour of US TV instead – it saves on airfares and costly hotel expenses.

  29. Microseris

    Bravo to the young liberals for their principled response when they heard Jones disgraceful comments, oh wait…

    Future leadership material right there.

  30. muruk

    Lots of adults have probably said to other people’s kids who have misbehaved very badly “Wouldn’t your Mum die of shame if she knew what you have done?” I think the comment came from this, slightly rearranged.

    If it had been ignored, the lasting effect would be next to zero – well done Julia Gillard.

    However, the overly precious responses from so many has again demonstrated just how easy it is to get a great deal of free publicity. Well done Jonesy, front pages right across Australia.

  31. Liz45

    @GEE WIZZ – Your comment (NO.11) starts out OK, but then you do an Alan Jones! It was disgusting, but??? About as convincing as Jones’ so called apology!

    I can imagine if a similar thing happened at a Labor Party function? Say, Kerry O’Brien saying similar stuff about Julie Bishop for example? JG would be ripped to shreds by msm, you’d be screaming for her political demise (at least) and O’Brien’s future would be in serious doubt!

    IF you can say ‘yes’ to any of this, at least have the decency to say it was a disgusting act, without qualification! Jones has priors, so does Abbott, Joyce and others! The “cat” comment against Penny Wong comes to mind – there’s been several apart from their ‘usual’ sexist behaviour!

  32. ianjohnno1

    Have a look at Bill Leak’s cartoon in the Oz. Ouch!

  33. Liz45

    @muruk – You’re joking, right? I’ve heard some attempts to whitewash this, but yours is a step above!

    The thing is, that Jones said this to so-called adults, not ONE child AFTER they’d committed some demeanour.

    Also, JG’s father happened to die, and very recently. Anyone listening to Jones’ hateful tongue on many occasions (Media Watch for example – actual footage, voice etc not just a report of same?) knows how hateful, vicious and sexist he is! This person has a long history, as has Abbott! they should both go! Anyone who defends them are in the same ‘class’ in my view!

    @zut alors – I keep imploring Anna Burke, Acting Speaker to toss them all out! Get rid of them after two warnings – OUT!You can hear Pyne and Bronwyn Bishop among the main offenders! Does she do anything apart from reading the Rule Book? Have you heard her speak out/up on anything of substance lately? I haven’t!

  34. Merve

    I like Jones’ extended apology in the Daily Tele today. It doesn’t take long for him to explain it’s really all Gillards fault anyway.

  35. Liz45

    Remember the comment Jones made re the truckies’ ride on Canberra. He asserted that the police were stopping them at the border or nearing Parlt, and that’s why the numbers were not as anticipated – hundreds they said would come – they didn’t?

    The ACT police spokesperson came out and angrily stated that this was not so – they were just trying to prevent a traffic hazard! Jones didn’t apologize for that (alleged)lie either! Just went quiet, and that was that!

    Typical! We have a long way to go!

    @muruk – What about the ‘chafe bag’ raffle? That OK too I suppose? Just another harmless little raffle? I don’t think so!

  36. klewso

    Labor has a branch office in Kabul??????

  37. Liz45

    @MERVE – Wouldn’t use the Telegraph to wrap bad fish in! He’s not sorry at all – he’s only sorry that somebody had the decency to out him for his comments! That’s all! The only way he’ll show real remorse is if he’s taken off air due to every company withdrawing their funds for advertising! If they don’t, we’ll remember them too!

  38. klewso

    And “unsackable”?
    That would be a hessian one …. too small?

  39. The Pav

    @Murak 31

    You really need to look at your ethical compass if you feel Jones’ comments are in any way defensible.

    Perhaps the only defence you could raise is that Jones’ having never been a father was speaking from ignorance

  40. klewso

    Now “Manuel” Newman is sticking up for this conservative PR “pimp”?

  41. The Pav

    Geewhizz @ 11

    Nobody who has objected to Jones’ odious comment has suggested prosecution or objected to his ability to make such comments so why make such a stupid statement

    What you should be asking yourself is taht as you agree Jones is reprehensible then where does it put his protege Tony Abbott.

    Jones’ used the word “we” quite clearly meaning he was part of the Liberal Party so what does that say about the party you so steadfastly follow

    I assume that Tony Abbott was a member of the Young Libs
    yet when challenged the current president denied the comments then said he hadn’t heard them. The there was a the tweet in support. If this is Abbott background then isn’t he just as tainted.

    This is just the latest evil episode showing the unfitness of the party you so blindly follow in your insane right wing fanaticism

  42. Venise Alstergren

    LIZ: There’s only one way to stop Alan Jones, and that is to stop all the people in NSW from listening to him. Advertisers follow the people, not the other way around. The minute he doesn’t have an audience is the minute he will be stopped.

    QUESTION: How does one stop an audience from listening to him? Impossible, it’s a clear case of the public getting the ‘politicians’ we deserve.

  43. Draco Houston

    “Lots of adults have probably said to other people’s kids who have misbehaved very badly “Wouldn’t your Mum die of shame if she knew what you have done?” I think the comment came from this, slightly rearranged.

    If it had been ignored, the lasting effect would be next to zero – well done Julia Gillard.

    However, the overly precious responses from so many has again demonstrated just how easy it is to get a great deal of free publicity. Well done Jonesy, front pages right across Australia.”

    Lots of adults also don’t joke about the recently deceased parents of others, this is basic tact. You can try and rationalize this all you want, but Alan Jones didn’t just step over the line, he treated the line like he was competing in long jump. Absolutely disgraceful.

  44. Liz45

    @VENISE – Hi Venise! It’s heartening to learn that some advertisers have withdrawn their ‘support/money’; Freedom; Mercedes Benz; Woolworths has ‘suspended’ their support; a couple of regional radio stations did not take Jones’ ‘highlights’ today due to overwhelming emails and phone calls of complaint! My faith is being restored as I speak!

    Some people who are “outraged” by any suggestion that Abbott be drawn into any responsibility about this situation are ignoring the reality. Abbott has shared a platform with Jones on numerous occasions; he did NOT condemn the words used, or the laughter, or the ‘chafe bag’ aspect, or the fact that he may have felt compelled to object if he was there; or that the Liberal Party does NOT hold such views, and so on! Abbott hasn’t said any of this! He’s a despicable person, and he and Jones deserve each other!

    We often hear politicians refer to the anti social or bad behaviour of young people! One has to ask again, where do young people learn their bad behaviour from? It’s obvious by Abbott’s example, that it’s OK to use any means you want when your political opponent wins and you don’t like it! Sort of an exaggerated ‘dummy spit’ which Abbott has been engaged in since ’10? It’s time he was told to grow up! Some example for the members of the young Libs! NOT!

  45. GeeWizz

    Alan Jones is a shock jock… that is he shocks for a living.

    Now I said his comments about the death of her father were reprehensible but that doesn’t mean everything he said about Gillard being a protected species wasn’t true.

    Also may I note that Bob Carr was attempting an over-reach by demanding that Tony Abbott apologise for the comments of Alan Jones, I mean you have to be joking.

    As to Alan Jones future career in radio, I’d say this is but a blip, because as we have seen with other radio shock jocks… lets take Kyle Sanderlands as example, he’ll be taken off the air for a few weeks and then once it’s all blown over the advertisers will be lining up again with deep pockets. Sorry folks but thats how it happens.

  46. Liz45

    @DRACO HOUSTON – No, people don’t say those ugly things out of “tact” it’s better than that, it’s called decency, compassion and in my case, empathy. I watched my father die from a couple of strokes, heart attacks for three years, and it was plain bloody agonising to see. He looked and weighed as though he’d had cancer, about 5 stone or so. I’ve also lost my mother, and my heart goes out to anyone who’s been down this path – which we all travel at some time. there is no excuse for such heartless and callous comments. They weren’t necessary to make his point,(whatever that point was)and was hurtful and callous, devoid of even basic form of decency!

    Technology – Let’s hope others get IT- The tools at our disposal now are sophisticated and can be almost invisible via mobile phones and miniature recorders. As I’ve said before, it’s ironic that a media person behaved with such ignorance! But then, I’ve never been ‘bowled over’ by Alan Jones’ intelligence, and have still to be convinced that Abbott is an alleged Rhodes Scholar? My response to that is, he must’ve got it in childish behaviour????

  47. matthews chris

    Sorry I wrote Gideon when I should have written Matthew -alzheimers fade out

  48. Warren Joffe

    Mr Jones has been alleged widely, if not truthfully, to be homosexual. Let’s assume it is completely false for the sake of fair comparison with what Jones alleged about the Gillards. What would he say if someone, maybe under the immunity of parliamentary privilege, were to say that his mother died out of shame at learning that some people were calling him a [use your own derogatory word for gay people]?

  49. Hugh (Charlie) McColl

    GeeWizz, if you believe Alan Jones’s comments were “reprehensible” then where is your rebuke? You didn’t enter this discussion to reprehend Jones but to run a diversion for him. Like Jones in his Channel Nine ‘apology’, you simply utter the word and move on to your actual agenda.
    I feel sorry for Mrs Gillard (the widow). That some prat on radio can make an undignified statement about her husband’s death just because he feels like it is so demeaning. That such a high profile public figure as Jones made such a statement simply to impress some children in the Liberal Party only doubles the humiliation. Next he’ll have some producer phoning the grieving Gillard household to extend an invitation for a little talkback on 2GB. Still, with defenders like GeeWizz….

  50. Liz45

    @GEE WIZZ – Alan Jones is also an influential person re sport and sporting people? He has a responsibility as an adult; as a person in the media, with a special responsibility via his daily job; he should’ve shown responsibility while speaking to young people, and if having credibility means anything to him at all, he should’ve used common decency in his comments. I have no problem with people airing contrary views, or airing them passionately, what I do object to is pure vile hatred and ugliness! He portrayed these undesirable traits!

    When you watch the next violent escapade on TV news on a weekend night, will you wonder what causes that violence? Will you question your own behaviours and examples? Will you vow to act with decency and respect at all times, so this type of behaviour is not acceptable in our community/country/world? Probably not! But I do!

    @Warren Joffe – I’m not interested in a person’s sexual orientation when I see/hear appalling behaviour, it’s not relevant. But I do wonder how Jones could give any comfort to young men who may be having trouble with their sexual awareness – in that, he’s doubly culpable then for his behaviour! Gays get enough ‘bad press’, particularly young people at school!

    He has no redeeming features in my view. This is far from his first offence! He has form going back several years!

  51. Karen

    What annoys me is how Jones treats Gillard as if she is the only l * a r (to the extent that she really is one on the question of her consistent commitment to the carbon signal) he has ever come across in politics. What about on his own side of politics. No scatalogical abuse directed there. Honestly, this bloke’s full of do* che!

  52. klewso

    Jones is the old conservative family retainer – the party intermediary/conduit to their general public – he can say what they think but can’t enunciate – bound as they are by that awful “political correctness”.

  53. outside left

    Troofie, there has never been a backlash like this before. Social media is the new frontier and the tories are completely out of their depth dealing with it.The retribution towards jones is going to be something to behold, and the tories will be collateral damage

  54. Douglas Evan

    Unsackable? Are you sure? With sponsors pulling out left right and centre. Their facebook pages jammed with outraged comments and more than 50,000 signatures on the skyrocketing Lochner – Change.org petition. Are you really sure? I think this will just grow until he is gone.

  55. Rod Hagen

    Maybe, but what Jones has done is pee on the very people who make up his own ‘demographic”.

    He might have got away with such shite with an audience of self obsessed poor little rich 20 year olds at Sydney Uni, but his real radio audience are 55 to 80 year olds. They are all either going through the very difficult problem of handling the imminent passing of their own parents, or deeply enmeshed in questions of their relationships with their own children as they approach the end of their lives.

    His comments will cause such people huge disquiet. He’s been caught out beating up on the very relationship that is central to their circumstances. Jones has only got away with it in the past because his audience don’t have to think about what he says. Knee jerk nonsense that doesn’t really cut close to home but gives people a neatly pre-packaged junk opinion that they can spout themselves.

    This time, he’s been caught out. The subject matter is very close indeed to the hearts and minds of his regular audience, and they won’t like what he’s had to say about such things one little bit.

  56. Frank Campbell

    Politicians’ hypocrisy exemplified neatly by Minister Jenny Macklin today : “He’s a serial offender”…”I don’t go on his show very often”.

    Jones has been a shockjock for twenty years. Yet Keating, Carr and just about every other politician queued up to get “interviewed” by the rancid parrot. Most of them have read “Jonestown”. They know. They know Jones is deeply repulsive, narcissistic, etc etc. Yet they crawl back for more. Including Jenny “not very often” Macklin.

    The hypocrisy is now redoubled, with Abbott being made responsible for Alan Spittle’s misogyny. Simple fact is that the ALP, crippled in the polls and beset with policy cockups, is bent on assassinating the Naked Priest’s character.

  57. outside left

    Frank,they are not crippled in the polls, check for yourself

  58. hyumentaya jesse

    apparently there is such a thing as bad publicity. go figure.

  59. Liz45

    I’ve just finished reading a speech that Anne Summers gave re the sexist treatment of PM, Julia Gillard by many in the community, some radio shock jocks, some politicians, some on social pages etc. It is worth reading.


  60. Yclept

    “Of course this is a standard leftwing tactic… throw around -isms and -ists words when you are losing the argument and debate. We’ve seen it time and time again.”

    Well, GeeWizz the left must have been to a right wing LIEberal Party training session as they are pretty good at throwing around -isms such as communism, socialism, unionism and any other term they think they can debauch.

  61. Frank Campbell

    That’s my point, OutsideLeft, the polls have gone from desperate to bad- and they think that character assassination of Abbott might be working. They might be right, but personality politics is usually a mid-term indulgence- we’re probably a year from the election. Policy will dominate when minds are focused on voting.

  62. outside left

    Frank, if it’s policy then labor win

  63. Lady White Peace

    Alan Jones is the mouthpiece for all that is nasty, bigoted and animalistic in our collective psyche. He is the mouthpiece for all that is reprehensible and ugly within each one of us. We should apologies to him for making him bear all of our nastiness. And we can undo all of that by releasing him from his role at 2GB.
    It’s ok Alan you can go now, we no longer need you to be our mouthpiece, we are now aware of our stupidity and loathe what is coming out of y/our mouth.

  64. klewso

    Hasn’t “character assassination” worked for Abbott and his and Murdoch’s Limited News Party, up to now? When it was Rudd/Gillard they were denigrating?
    Compare the disclosed/publicised “lies debate”?

  65. GeeWizz

    I think the slight polling improvement for Labor is great news for the Coalition, it means Labor will stick with Gillard for a few more months and may leave them too late to do the old switcheroo when the time counts.

    Lets not forget this is a woman most people regard not having won the election but rather being selected, they won’t make the same mistake twice.

  66. pete moore

    anyone else still confused about what tony abbott really thinks is acceptable?

  67. Liz45

    @GEE WIZZ- How many times do you have to be told? The PM went to the last election as just that – PM? The Libs have knifed how many leaders since ’07? Two? It was only Abbott’s vote that got him elected? If he wins the next election, you’ll plug the fact of his right to be PM? Why not Julia Gillard?

    There’ve been male Prime Ministers/Leaders of Opposition?Ministers who’ve changed their minds on policies, promises etc after the Election.

    In NSW, Barry O’Farrell said that the make up of the Council meant he had to take a different stand on certain policies? Just a round and about method of going back on his word, or to use your analogy, he LIED? Guess what? No screams from Alan Jones or other shock jocks or the Telegraph etc? Nothing! Zilch!

    Abbott lied before the 2004 Election? As Health Minister he made a promise re Private Health Insurers, but had to go back on this promise that was ‘set in stone’ or words to that effect? Where was your outrage then? Couldn’t be heard, your honour?

    You are clutching at straws to deny the fact that people in JG’s electorate were responsible for her being re-elected and then her Party re-endorsing her as PM! That’s what happened. She was “selected” before the ’10 Election by her peers, and faced the voters?

    Climate change policy was the electoral platform of both major parties. Has been part of Federal Labor for some years? Was the pre-election policy of Howard? Was endorsed by his colleagues? The day before the Election, Julia Gillard restated ALP policy re action on climate change, with a definite reference to its implementation?

  68. Edward James

    No doubt what Alan Jones said was offensive! But is is not enough for most voters to forget about the political sins which the two parties not much preferred Labor and Liberal have committed over the last decade. Edward James

  69. shepmyster

    I’m not quite sure the Godzilla theory is going to hold up this time. The response to his comments seem to have stunned even Jones and with almost 70000 sighning the online petition I’m hopeful the issue won’t die with the birth of the next news cycle.

  70. Edward James

    This morning he is trying to get back on the front foot. I wonder how things may have played out in main stream media, if there was no recording to support the published assertions. Edward James

  71. izatso?

    Wizz and his desperately deflected distortion, his feeders should ease up on him….. and the Distorted Bag O’Wind will Huff ‘n Puff away today too. Lots to miss, comin’ up ….

  72. banistersmind

    Howard was a classic for turning his back on Opposition speakers at the dispatch box. And he was just as good at letting a sexist comment go through to the keeper. Times haven’t so much changed as they have gotten…louder

  73. Gary Dean

    I really would be mortified and exponentially withered if I were ever to learn that someone around me died of shame because of my constant and gushing lies and if I’d back-stabbed my boss. My Mother would have never forgiven me if ever she thought I’d crushed the person who gave me such opportunity as being deputy. Surely she would have died of shame.

    Please point me in the direction of the Save Alan Jones petition.

  74. Liz45

    @pete moore – I just went to that site, and look at the faces of those in view – some of the women in the Liberal Party are just as bad as Jones & Abbott. Bronwyn Bishop and Sophie Mirabella look quite happy to be there, as does Abbott. He doesn’t ‘get it’ that demeaning the PM in such a way is an offence to his own daughters? God help how they’ve been raised? The interview with Anne Summers on last night’s PM program was enlightening, and her speech is worth reading. I was repulsed by much of the cartoons etc. It needs to stop now!

  75. Disturbed

    Just goes to show how small town Sydney radio is, when a “major” station can’t even get a good spread of major investors.

  76. Frank Campbell

    One thing’s for sure- Alan Jones will never die of shame.

    Most of the commentary here misses the point that Jones wants to be publicly whipped and excoriated. That’s his schtick: a lightning rod for his angry, resentful clientele. Jones is a surrogate victim. Alan the professional victim. A kind of perverted Jesus Christ.

  77. Frank Campbell

    Outside Left says: “if it’s policy then labor win”

    Haven’t you noticed the queue of handwringing ex-ALP heavyweights lamenting the “loss of labour values” and every other conceivable symptom of terminal malaise?

    The only thing that might save the ALP is the adversarial two-party system: the only choice is… the alternative. Labour has stuffed up numerous policies and is making headway on some important traditional ALP reforms (belatedly) such as dental health and education. But Labour missed the boom on the mining tax (should have been rammed through in 2008), so now it’s used against them in key regions- and because it’s a supertax will generate little revenue as resource prices fall to more normal levels.

    And the ALP is stuck with the absurd carbon tax, which is both an impost on everything for no benefit at all and a symbol of the decline in climate millenarianism- which Labour still can’t admit (neither can Abbott). The hypocrisy of a govt.sponsored fossil fuel boom matched by a parallel policy of futile CO2 reduction is starkly obvious.

  78. Liz45

    @FRANK CAMPBELL – I know this is off topic, but I have a nagging question, which pops up regularly. If the price on carbon won’t have any effect, why did those ‘pesky Greens’ support it? It doesn’t make any sense to me. I just don’t buy the assertion that it won’t ‘work’? Isn’t the success of it dependent on the ‘big polluters’ changing their ways? and too the rest of us?

    I agree with you about Alan Jones and his air of martyrdom, but that doesn’t mean he should be allowed to use this crap without question. I’m repulsed by him and all he does and says, and as a woman I find his misogynist attitude offensive. I suggest you read Anne Summer’s speech “Her Rights At Work” on her website. It may give more clarity than just this particular ‘event’?
    Also, Abbott is using the same martyrdom response – ‘I get blamed for flat tyres too’ is his last little bit of bs.

    Just because a child chucks a tantrum is no reason to allow this negative behaviour to continue, or one who throws their food or kicks people! Jones doesn’t even have the excuse of being a small child. He takes advantage of being an adult, he should adopt some adult traits – not those of a rich little school boy playing havoc in the playground. He’s yet to utter the ‘sorry’ word? The hardest word in the dictionary it seems!

    This person has no ethics at all! None. Zilch! God help us if he ever represents this country overseas. My lounge isn’t plush enough to sink into with embarrassment if that should happen!

    It’s interesting to note that it’s Labor’s ‘lost way’ that is lamented, criticized etc. If you look at the Coalition in the Federal Parlt, and now in some States, there’s an equal argument that the Liberal Party has not one shred of the ideals of say Menzies or even Malcolm Fraser, and yet nobody wrings their hands and wonders at this demise. I’ve never voted conservative, never will, but from what I can recall, and the comments of Malcolm Fraser in recent years, Howard was to the right, and Abbott is plain scary? Where’s the angst? Why pick on the ALP?

  79. Liz45

    “This person has no ethics at all! None. Zilch! God help us if he ever represents this country overseas. My lounge isn’t plush enough to sink into with embarrassment if that should happen!”

    Of course I meant Abbott! cringe! cringe!

  80. Liz45

    @EDWARD JAMES – Re the comments made by Alan Jones vs the ‘sins’ of the major parties in recent years. This is NOT about politics. This is about plain common decency as human beings. The history of this person is well known. He gets off committing acts of inciting racial hatred even, and the police do nothing. If they won’t, if his bosses won’t, then it’s up to us as responsible adults with some semblance of decency to take a stand. It stops now! Or, it should!
    again, go to the speech and you’ll see and hear things that you either weren’t aware of, or have forgotten. It’s all been researched and laid out very carefully – worth reading!

  81. Edward James

    The politics are right there at the surface, you are part of it Liz 45! With supporters of the two parties not much preferred in action right here in this Crikey string. I use the term “political sins against the peoples” because I am doing my political thing in the peoples court of public opinion. You advocating responsible adults take action, I understand that is happening in response to the Alan Jones died of shame speech. I just hope voters keep focused on political allsorts. Edward James

  82. Frank Campbell

    Liz: To understand Jones, just read “Jonestown”.
    He can’t change- so switch off the oxygen. Politicians should boycott him. They are all hypocrites about Jones, notably Jenny “I don’t go on his show often” Macklin (yesterday).

    And reported just now that Roxon is NOT going to boycott Jones. Pathetic.

    The fact that the Greens nailed Gillard (no climate warrior) to the carbon tax says nothing about its likely efficacy. CO2 emissions fell 14% in the USA in the last five years- because coal has been displaced by gas. Gas fell to a mere $2 a PJ in the US. I’ve been saying here for years that if you seriously want a rapid reduction in CO2, switch to gas. Rnewable energy fantasists have only noticed gas this year, and the Greens (with consummate hypocrisy) belatedly discovered the rapacity of coal seam gas and along with the opportunist Alan Jones, courted farmers. The Greens hate CSG because it’s fossil fuels. They insult wind turbine victims who are raped by corporates in much the same way as CSG.
    The carbon tax is too small to kill off fossil fuel. It’s marginal to CO2, but definitely increases the cost of living to an extent.

    Both the ALP and Greens are in urgent need of reform, for different reasons. The Greens are today an inner-urban upper middle class climate cult- they’re neglecting the environment. The ALP is essentially an incestuous clique of lawyers intent on serving corporate capitalism. Look at where they go when they leave office: Brumby, Downer and some fracking Admiral on the board as agents of influence for Huawei corp.

    Abbott is no traditional Liberal- he’s DLP. This ameliorates neo-con Lib. policies to an extent. But both ALP and Libs have to boil the frog slowly in the corporate cauldron. Australians are still enamoured of an egalitarian society, to a point, not to mention the remnants of the welfare state we still have.

    But climate extremism has to be killed off before any progress might be made, not least on…climate.

  83. Karen

    @ Frank Campbell no. 76 – Jonesy’s schtick is a little more calibrated than you give him credit for. Its not just him being a ‘lightning rod’ for disenfranchised r– necks (which, true, is his bread and butter), its also about keeping media focus on Gillard’s unpopularity to bring down the government at the polls. Possum’s latest piece on the correlation between a PM’s popularity and how his/her govt tracks in the poll is an eye-opener in this regard.

  84. Liz45

    @EDWARD – As far as I’m concerned the issue of misogynist attitudes and language outweighs other considerations of politics. Whether people do or don’t like Julia Gillard is not the issue, the important issue is of equality and justice, and an over riding sense of decency. The Coalition have used misogynist behaviours, helped by certain sections of the media to denigrate and abuse a woman in public office. Sadly, even other women have joined in!

    I don’t have a passionate hatred for the ALP that colours all my basic principles. I’m old enough to remember all the shabby, despicable even, actions of the conservatives. I’d speak out if Julie Bishop or Bronwyn Bishop was treated this way.

    Have you read the speech yet? I suggest you do!

  85. Edward James

    Bad politics and those political allsorts and their supporters who continue even now to accommodate it, are the problem. Why is it every time there is an election those campaigning for election occupy public property with apparent impunity? Edward James

  86. jengz

    So glad I live in Melbourne so don’t get this every day, but sometimes those Sydney blokes like Jones & Kyle say or do something so disturbing even I can’t ignore it. So sorry for those of you who cop it constantly

  87. Edward James

    The 8 of September was critical in the move by the peoples of NSW to move toward good governance. An opportunity to finish the job which Labor nationally has refused to do internally for itself. In over 135 local council elections voters may reject Labor and any overt Labor support. I hope people will exercise their votes below the line, blocking preference deals.
    The dice were cast, we all wait to see if we the people have resolved to move toward honest open representative government. I believe we the people do have the power to shake the base of politics. I am yet to be convinced we the peoples will unite in common purpose. Edward James

  88. Edward James

    @ Liz45 Posted Tuesday, 2 October 2012 at 1:32 pm You ask if I have read “the speech”. Well as I am motivated by my own personal experience over more than a decade of lone campaigning the speech has as much value to me as you put on my forty odd pages of paid announcements, which I have published exposing the short comings of our elected representatives across the political spectrum. Edward James

  89. Chrisko Otorongo

    Parrots are wonderful beautiful creatures. Alan Jones is not. He is a ….

  90. geomac62

    Edward James
    Instead of being a pompous windbag why didn,t you just answer Liz with a yes or a no ? You have either read the speech or you haven,t . I haven,t but have heard the bits repeated in the media . Jones made his non apology regarding those bits . On any level making a vile comment about a persons passing to attack the daughter is below standards of decency here or for that matter anywhere .

  91. Edward James

    geomac62 ? I doubt you even know which speech Liz45 is referring to! suppose you tell us. Edward James

  92. geomac62

    You obfuscate again . Yes or no , simple .
    Your in the Jones demographic aren,t you ? White , over 50 and a chip on your shoulder . Self opinionated and full of yourself to boot makes you a likely listener to Jones diatribes . Hint : Try classic FM and chill out . Music instead of moronic diatribes from the queen of the airwaves.

  93. Edward James

    So simply Geomac 62 tell us all, which speech is Liz 45 is referring to ? Edward James

  94. Liz45

    @EDWARD – Do you know? I mentioned it as I thought you might be interested in something that affects the over 50% of people in the country, and how the misogynist climate has been gathering momentum over the last 2 years or so. Anne Summers has done extensive research, all of it in the Appendix at the end. It’s an eye opener and hopefully will motivate all who are shocked by the contents to take a stand.

    It doesn’t matter who’s in or out of Govt. If we continue in this hateful, negative, crude and misogynist environment, the country will end up toxic, not just a group of people.

    I’d hope that this would transcend party politics, but I suppose that’s impossible since the Liberal Party instigated this hateful campaign, with msm gladly perpetuating it. Alan Jones is just a part of the disgraceful situation. A very ugly part though!

    He still hasn’t said the ‘sorry’ word. How can you apologise without saying sorry? Perhaps there’s something I’ve missed along life’s journey to date!

  95. Edward James

    @ Liz 45. Thanks for pointing out for the other readers, you were asking me if I had read your Anne Summers link! I try to keep focused on my fight for honest open government. The barriers to what i am doing are all those voters, party members and supporters who insist on ignoring the political sins of their political favorites. You Liz45 and other Crikey readers know I have provided links and contact details in good faith. Edward James

  96. Warren Joffe

    @ Frank Campbell

    We arrive at many points together from different angles and I read you for your reasoning and your being largely factual. But…… [trivial you might answer}

    “The Greens are today an inner-urban upper middle class climate cult- they’re neglecting the environment.”

    “upper middle class”!!!! How about remnant of the newly (first in family to be) educated class of the the 60s with largely secure jobs, mainly public sector, with few or no children and modest acquaintance with people of serious intellect.

    If one thinks of “haute bourgeoisie” as the equivalent it is of course laughable. Definitely not the Parisian type or the Viennese Jews who might have enhanced our high arts with performance and philanthropy as well as having created or inherited family businesses.

    If one thinks of the class which (paradoxically by downward mobility; cf. Greg Clark’s “A Farewell to Alms: a Brief Economic History of the World”) created the Industrial Revolution one is thinking of those splendid families of the industrialised areas of the West – typically Midlands in the UK – who probably had 10 to 15 children in the late 19th century, of whom a lot more survived than did the equivalent families of the poor and of which some small part gave us the best of modern science, medicine and law; etc. With the abolition of death duties Australia may be enjoying (or suffering) an extension of those families for a while despite birth control – but not the components who have sunk to inner city public sector secure jobs with 1.2 children, bitterness about the ex and folie de grandeur with the Greens.

  97. geomac62

    Eddy J
    No I haven,t or I don,t wish to read it would suffice . Instead you answer a question that wasn,t asked and tell us about your , in your mind , noble cause . Who else does that ? Oh yeah , politicians with an agenda . Have you actually given a view of Jones vile joke ? It may surprise you but thats what the article is about , AJ and his habit of saying things that are vile , vindictive and seldom having any factual basis . Your in my age group and no doubt know treating the subject of a persons death in the manner Jones did as beyond the pale . The non apology only made him seem incapable of normal human behaviour in respect to others . Jones OA has the same value a Terry Lewis knighthood .

  98. Liz45

    @GEE WIZZ – If you think any of the Larry Pickering cartoons are just the “Labor Kabul” throwing around the misogynist labels, it just shows your own views of women, and the revolting and vile language used against them. What has been researched by Anne Summers has nothing to do with a woman’s ‘fragile sense of humour’ it’s pure bile!

    It’s typical of your values, when you’re just taking the same line as Abbott, Joyce and others – and sadly, other women. I’m disturbed by Nicola Roxon saying she’ll go on his show. To be that desperate? I’m not surprised by Abbott, as he’s already shown his lack of principle, but Nicola Roxon knows better! I’ll send her an email too!

    After what happened to the beautiful Jill Meagher, it’s the role of decent men to make a stand against violence towards women – the attitudes that lead to these awful crimes starts with the influences EVEN while in the womb! I suggest you avail yourself of the influences of violence to mothers while pregnant. Just one small example – a baby’s heart rate increases during this type of environment.

    The brain is the only organ of the body that is incomplete at birth. The only ‘attributes’ are those required for breathing, swallowing etc. 65% of calorie intake goes to the forming brain – no wonder babies sleep so much – to read about the growth of the brain makes me feel tired.

    So, if you project your attitudes, and people who think, like Jones, Pickering, Abbott, Pyne and others the growing child is influenced. Actual violence causes the ‘flight or fight’ responses, which in some cases means, that adult persons live in this ‘state’ permanently!

    I intend to continue my resolve of at least 40 years to stamp out this type of misogynist behaviour, that is not only destructive to women, it’s destructive to the lives of perpetrators as well? Sometimes I look at the face of Abbott when he’s raging,(and doesn’t know the camera is on him) and he looks very ugly – as does Jones! It’s the internal influence showing on the outside, and it’s not pretty! I’m not talking about ‘good looks’ or ‘being handsome or pretty’ I’m talking about the inner showing outwards!

    So, either take this opportunity to educate yourself, or keep your revolting attitudes to your self! They’re dangerous to the spirit! Stop defending the indefensible!

  99. Edward James

    NSW just held local council elections on the 8 of September. Most of the 41 politicians campaigning for the ten seats on Gosford City Council lacked the integrity and personal values to ensure their election and re-election campaigns were conducted within the law. I am more than happy to hear from any other voters who can not understand why the main parties and so many other shonky candidates regularly conduct their campaigns outside the Parliamentary Electorates and Elections Act 1912? Edward James

  100. Frank Campbell

    Warren J: I quite agree- not trivial. Your description of the class/status position of inner-city Greens is spot on, the older cohort running the show. My ref. to “upper middle class” is based solely on real estate, i.e. the huddle around the GPOs which creates the low postcode Greens inadvertently led to LPGs benefiting from the several property booms from the 1960s, esp. the late 1980s and 2000s. The older cohort are asset millionaires. They also gain greatly from disporportionate access to public goods- everything from transport to schools etc. The inner suburbs are insulated from property crashes. The relative gap between them and outer suburbans/rurals has widened. In that sense they are now the upper tier of the middle class. They don’t match the wealthier entreprenurial groups , nor old money al la Baillieu of course. But they are exploiting the knowledge economy, thus consolidating their position.

  101. Liz45

    @FRANK CAMPBELL – I do not believe that gas is a good alternative to coal. There’s a belief that in fact, gas could be worse, that it could produce more carbon that burning coal. I certainly do NOT support the mining of Coal Seam Gas, and certainly not via fracking. Too much evidence of the dangers, not enough research into all aspects of mining for csg.

    Later this month in the Illawarra, we’re having another monster gathering, where the people will make an anti CSG statement – at Bulli Showground. Anyone interested can go to No CSG Illawarra for details.

    The people of the Illawarra, and from many walks of life are against mining along our escarpment. Every time there’s a public meeting, the numbers grow. As each piece of negative information comes to light, the support grows, and it includes the Tablelands as well.

    Right along the escarpment are catchment areas for the Dams that supply our drinking water. Also, these areas are already in the sights of the CSG mining companies. You can see a detailed map on the ILlawarra site!

    I’ve seen GASLAND and I’ve read about the elimination of all the environmental protections introduced by the Bush & Chaney Administrations. There’s another film by the same young man who brought us Gasland – and I’m glad he did! What’s happened in the US could happen here! The Mining Companies are lying to us in the same way they lied in the US – with awful results!

    The NSW Govt, namely Barry O’Farrell promised the people of NSW that agricultural land and water catchment areas and acquifers etc would be protected from mining. He lied! (take note Gee Wizz!)

    The policy announced by him recently goes back on those promises, in fact, there’s going to be no Legislation, no Laws, nothing, so how do people protest, and what do they use to protest about? This is clever and tricky business by this conservative Govt, whose gluttony is driving this industry. It’s now up to the people!

    Incidentally, this is not the only thing that he lied about, but I don’t hear the Murdoch rag screaming from the rafters about this lot! Interestingly, Alan Jones is against CSG mining, but his presence at a protest rally has been withdrawn now – they don’t want to associate with him! Good stuff I say!

    Once gas or the toxins used for mining get into the essential catchment areas, there’s no correction. There’s no allowance for an ‘oooopppps! sorry’ response that can be turned back! That’s it! No water for the Illawarra or the Tablelands! Then what?

    In the Hunter region the people don’t want it either – not around the wine industry and not on the Liverpool plains where food is grown, and not anywhere near Warragamba Dam (supplies water to Sydney?) Wouldn’t it be great if the awful toxins got in there? Then what? Scary thought!

    Watch out for us on the news!

  102. Frank Campbell

    Liz45: My point is simply that gas emits half the CO2 emissions of coal. It doesn’t matter what you or I want- the gas boom is displacing coal, therefore CO2 emissions are falling. “Renewable energy” has achieved nothing, but advances in technology have changed the game.

    Many times on this site I’ve attacked CSG and indeed all extraction- on principle: the unfettered right to extract on private or public land is assumed by all to be some sort of primordial right,and the law reflects this. The basic rights of people and the environment are traduced.

    Unfortunately the climate cult blinds the Green Left to its own hypocrisy. The Greens belatedly discovered, along with cane toad Alan Jones, the victims of CSG. You can be sure if CSG had zero CO2 emissions, the Greens would vilify landowners and ignore environmental damage- just as they do to victims of wind turbines.

  103. Liz45

    @Frank Campbell – But gas emits methane, and some say this is as bad or worse than Co2. And, it’s not JUST The Greens against CSG – the opponents cover just about every walk of life, so it’s a furphy to blame the Greens only! Farmers – the NSW Farmers are against it, wine growers, horse breeders, ordinary folk like me?

    Also, THE Greens aren’t in the US? So how do you explain what’s happening there. A Greens member of NSW Parliament just came back from the US, and he can clearly show how he was followed around by reps from Santos? How does that happen?

    The young man who made the Gasland documentary is another example. He started out just being curious after he received a letter offering him a pittance for his beautiful land/stream etc? As I said before, he’s just finished another doco I believe!

    There’s a lot of discussion about wind turbines. some say that the only ones who are complaining are against wind power per se! Others live with them without complaint?

    The fact is, that there are viable alternatives to both – that’s the issue. The only thing driving gas and CSG is MONEY!

    It’s too simple to just blame the opponents as ‘The Greens’ or the Green Left – too easy! And not true. That says that everyone else is not able to educate themselves and make up their own minds. There’ve been lots of articles etc about peoples’ experiences, to just use a blanket statement.

    I repeat – we don’t need to take the risks – there are alternatives. Solar power is more than OK for base load power. Why do we have to have huge power stations anyway? Why not have smaller ones? Why not spend more on supplying solar for homes or apartment blocks etc? It would also assist permanent employment for people!

    The people at Port Augusta have voted for solar power in their area. There was overwhelming support for this. It’s exciting, and the rest of the country could learn from them.

    Australia receives enough energy from the sun in a day or two, to supply the world’s energy needs for a year! Why aren’t we going ahead with this? MONEY for a few, at the possible cost of heaps of people – our very future on the planet! We can’t take risks with water? We’re already the only inhabited continent with a serious water shortage – in the future. It’s madness to take any risks with it!

    As far as I can see, this is the argument that the Greens put forward – it makes sense to me too!

  104. Frank Campbell

    you’re missing my point Liz: residents impacted by corporate CSG rapacity are of course infinitely varied- all they have in common is thet they’re victims of corporate intrusion. Exactly the same with wind corporations.

    This makes for strange bedfellows…all shades of opinion united by a common threat.

    The point about the Greens is simply that they’re hypocrites to suck up to “farmers” over CSG, yet vilify wind turbine victims.

    As for CO2 and CO4, methane is over 20 times for potent as a greenhouse gas than CO2. But gas rates about half the emissions of coal overall- when burned. Methane escapes are another matter (both from mines and fracked CSG).

  105. Liz45

    I haven’t heard the Greens “vilify” people re wind turbines. What I HAVE heard, is that there’s no evidence re the complaints about the health affects of same. It appears strange, that people who don’t object to wind turbines don’t suffer any health problems????

    What about the NSW Nationals who purport to be there primarily for farmers, and yet have done a deal with CSG mining companies? Not only have the coalition gone back on a promise (LIED) they’ve made sure that there are no legal grounds by which to protest? How can anyone launch a legal case when there’s no Legislation by which to do it? Very clever of them! So much for their so-called LONG term support for farmers? Hypocrites? Liars even? Just one of many? And they probably had the ‘guns and moses’ pair to support this disgrace in the Upper House? Fine upstanding people like the extreme right of the Libs, plus Nile, Green and the two Roberts of the ‘guns brigade’?

    Good on PSA members who are protesting today! My Union when I was employed by Dept of Education. My job would be on the line if I was still there!

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