The most bizarre thing about all the hyperventilating over Rupert Murdoch imposing his views into the election campaign isn’t the fact he’s doing it — it’s that anyone should think it is unusual.

Murdoch has been crudely interfering in Australian elections since 1972, when he not only spearheaded a newspaper campaign to elect Gough Whitlam as PM but also acted as a quasi-campaign manager for the Labor Party. Then, three years later, he switched sides and ran Whitlam out of office.

And of course it’s exactly the same behaviour that’s been happening at every British election since he acquired the London Sun in 1969.

So to everyone who has rising blood pressure over the unedifying role of Murdoch in distorting the course of Australian democracy — calm down. You’re wasting your time.

The jackboots that kick around Australian (and British) politicians during every election campaign won’t disappear until (or unless) the ageing tycoon dies.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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