Over the past month, Australia has lost a prime minister and the ABC has lost its chair and managing director. You don't have to be a conspiracy theorist to know that one media organisation -- led by one media mogul -- was instrumental in fuelling and encouraging that turmoil. Today we begin a series looking at the shadow of fear that hovers permanently over Australian democracy.

Well call me Ishmael! In August, for the first time this year, we had a sighting of the great white whale of Australian politics: Rupert Murdoch breaking the surface and blowing his spout with, “Malcolm has got to go!”