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Apr 3, 2013

Yes, Rupert, racism is disgraceful — tell your newspapers

Rupert Murdoch has attacked Labor for being racist and portrayed himself as an immigration advocate. Does that ring true, given the stories his newspapers run? Crikey intern Ben Westcott trawls through the archives.

Yesterday News Limited chairman Rupert Murdoch, who is visiting Australia, took aim at Labor for being racist while portraying himself as a champion of immigration.

“I think the way they’re talking about the 457 [visas] is disgraceful and racist. I’m a big one for encouraging immigration, I think that’s the future,” Murdoch told Sky News from Darwin in relation to the Gillard government’s criticism of 457 visas.

We thought we’d trawl the archives for stories from Murdoch’s News Ltd publications over the last three years, relating to immigration and race issues. Judge for yourself whether Murdoch’s anti-racism crusade rings true …

In May 2012, The Daily Telegraph ran this piece:

The Daily Telegraph, 22 May 2012

The poll beside the article said 67% of readers thought immigration should be completely banned. The paper followed up in October 2012 with a piece describing the diseases that asylum seekers carry:

The Daily Telegraph, 12 October 2012

Piers Akerman, a columnist for The Daily Telegraph, was once described by Murdoch as “one of News Limited’s greatest assets“. During controversial Dutch MP and anti-immigration activist Geert Wilders’ visit to Australia, Akerman published this:

The Daily Telegraph, 19 February 2013

Akerman wrote:

“His message cut through strongly — Islamists make poor migrants in Western liberal democracies. We need to hear his message and think about what our misguided multicultural policy has wrought here.” published this last week on some of the “perks” asylum seekers receive once they arrive (such as medical care):, 28 March 2013

The Herald Sun has also persistently and extensively followed the issue of asylum seekers, writing this in November 2011:

The Herald Sun, 29 November 2011

This year the paper raised concerns about educational requests by Muslim leaders:

The Herald Sun, 20 March 2013

The popular Herald Sun columnist and blogger Andrew Bolt has found himself in trouble in the past for remarks others deemed racially discriminatory. He was taken to court in 2010 over two blog posts — “It’s So Hip to Be Black” and “White is the New Black” — in which he claimed “fair Aborigines” were emphasising their indigenous heritage to obtain political clout.

In 2011 Bolt wrote “Keeping up appearances on immigration“, in which he discussed immigrants who commit crime:

The Herald Sun, 27 April 2011

Murdoch’s critics have often claimed he exercises strict editorial control over his publications. Given his remarks this week, and the examples above, have they got that one wrong?

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22 thoughts on “Yes, Rupert, racism is disgraceful — tell your newspapers

  1. CML

    Rupert was waxing lyrical about how “great” America was. I suggest he goes back there – and stays permanently!

    Agree with Achmed and Matthew. The Labor Party’s stance on 457 visas is not rac+st. I think the biggest rort of that system is the fact that these 457 visa workers (wherever they come from) are supposed to be “temporary”, but instead it is being used as some kind of immigration/permanent residence scam. Shades of the Howard era private college students, who came here for some dubious educational purpose, but were allowed to stay.
    Neither system is adequate for running our immigration policy, IMHO.

  2. The Pav

    I reckon somebody hacked into his system and its not actually Rupert doing tweets

  3. Achmed

    Herald Sun March
    ANDREW, a chicken sexer from Griffith, backs Julia Gillard’s attack on 457 visas. He is among 22 highly trained chicken sorters who have lost their jobs to imported Korean workers.
    Simon, who has been an IT contractor for 25 years, says he’s missed out on several jobs in Melbourne because employers imported Indian workers who were cheaper than hiring experienced Australians. Richard the civil designer, Huw the marine engineer and Scott the carpenter are among many who have contacted the Herald Sun to vent their anger at Koreans, Filipinos, Dutch, Russians, Indians, Italians and others being imported to take their jobs.

    On the other side are people like Antonio the Filipino painter and sandblaster, brought to Australia as a 457 worker, who claims the Victorian employer who sponsored him treated him like a slave. Instead of skilled work he was made to clean office toilets and forced to muck out cow sheds on a farm.

    Immigration Minister Brendan O’Connor says rogue employers have been abusing the system. He says a suburban pizza shop said it needed a human resources manager normally found in a big company but officials were unable to stop the visa even though it suspected it was a rort.

    He also uses the example of a company that said it needed to import high-skilled managers but they turned out to be low-skilled security guards.

  4. Achmed

    Prime Minister Julia Gillard says the 457 skilled migrant worker visa program is “riddled with rorts” and must be fixed.

    She’s concerned the program is being abused by employers and that Australian workers are missing out on jobs.
    Ms Gillard is proposing that employers be required to show they are nominating a position where there is a genuine shortage of workers.
    NOTE: Gillard is talking about the program not the individual workers

  5. shepherdmarilyn

    That is toeing, not towing. Towing is the means of pulling something or someone, toeing is obeying.

    The Tele though is one of the most feral ranters in this country – they simply will not stop inciting racist attacks on people.

  6. danny field

    klewso : in 2010 Rupert Murdoch gave a speech to his Australian media force stating basically greenies were ratbags and telling them not to take notice of “alternative power” sources like wind power etc and that nuclear energy was superb, safe and booming.

    Then came the 2011 Tsunami that and eons long problems with a flooded nuclear plant that will follow.

    In 2013 alternative energy profits in the USA out-stripped nuclear energy profits for the first time.

    I don’t think Rupert Murdoch has a bloody clue what he’s talking about most of the time.

  7. Steve777

    Let me think – I don’t recall in the recent debate about 457 visas any Government, ALP or union figure:
    – ever referring to the nationality, faith or ethnicity of 457-visa holders or suggest that these were in any way relevant to the debate
    – suggest that 457-visa holders brought TB, typhoid and/or other dread diseases into the country
    – suggest that 457-visa holders threw their children into the ocean
    – suggest that 457-visa holders were potential criminals who needed to be monitored by the police
    – suggest that 457-visa holders were potential terrorists.
    However, these and other imputations have been made in Murdoch’s rages about asylum seekers.

  8. Steve777

    No 17 – sorry – ‘rages’ should read ‘rags’.

  9. Elvis

    My personal favourite was The Australian’s triumphant headline: “Blacks’ face-wash plan a success” (street headline poster 8.4.05)

  10. Cathy Alexander

    Elvis, do you have a photograph / copy of that poster? Perhaps we could run it in Crikey Tips. Seems memorable … email us at [email protected]. Thanks Cathy