Milo Yiannopoulos

The Morrison government has just refused a visa to Milo Yiannopoulos, the increasingly desperate hard-right grifter who was to be part of Penthouse Australia publisher Damien Costas’ “Deplorables Tour”. Yiannopoulos was to return to Oz for the occasion, with Rebel Inc Canada’s Gavin McInnes and former English Defence League head Tommy Robinson. McInnes has already been refused a visa. Robinson is still waiting to hear back.

The refusal of Milo sets up a hat-trick. Two-thirds of the tour have now been banned. McInnes has been refused a visa for being the founder of the “Proud Boys”, a hard-right bro gang, which has been involved in street assaults. Robinson specialises in doxxing political enemies and journalists and then turning up to their house. Yiannopoulos “joked” that journalists should be gunned down by death squads, in mid-2018.

Despite the fact that “The Deplorables” has now turned into a Beckett-esque empty-stage experience, tickets for the tour are still being sold online, the first event taking place in Perth on March 23. There’s a long, rambling appeal on the ticketing website to support a campaign to get Robinson over.

It’s taken quite a while for the right in Australia to decide to quarantine themselves from this collection of shonks and ratbags. Mark Latham was briefly producing his sad Mark Latham’s Outsiders Facebook video show (now discontinued) in alliance with McInnes’ Canadian Rebel Inc outfit. Yiannopoulos was feted in parliament by David Leyonhjelm and One Nation, seven months after right-wing outfits everywhere had excluded him after the appearance of a radio interview transcript in which he had defended sex between adult men and young teenage boys. Tommy Robinson, a former member of the fascist British National Party, has several convictions for assault, intimidation and fraud.

Mike Stuchbery, a UK academic and journalist, has written several pieces showing how media platforms have enabled Robinson’s use of intimidatory doxxing. Robinson responded by turning up at his family home at 3am. Despite this sort of behaviour, the UK Independence Party — which alludes to respectability — has hired Robinson as a policy adviser.

The interesting thing in all of this is that Yiannopoulos probably had the best chance of getting a visa; as he pointed out, his “hunt down and kill journalists” comments were in texts to two journalists — in response to anodyne questions they had put to him. Yiannopoulos claims it was the journalists themselves who reported them, rendering the private public, but it was he who had made them on-the-record answers.

Could it possibly be that the Morrison government is less concerned with such baiting than with the presence of an advocate of adult-underage youth sex in the country at this time? Maybe they don’t share Spectator editor Rowan Dean’s view that the best person to have around defending George Pell as railroaded is someone who has expressed support for the “consensual” version of the non-consensual acts for which Pell has been convicted.

Could it be, could it possibly be, that this is the reason? How deplorable! And what a cesspool the Australian right is!

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey