(Image: Mitchell Squire/Private Media)
(Image: Mitchell Squire/Private Media)

While we wait for the Homeric epic of the Ben Roberts-Smith “defamation trial of the century” to produce its denouement, some light entertainment arrives in the form of the Federal Court’s decision to throw out the stupidest defamation case since Dutton v Bazzi: the Clive Palmer and Mark McGowan show.

Justice Michael Lee, following a fine tradition of judges waxing lyrical to entice interest in his succeeding 526 pages of legal reasoning, made plain from the outset where he was heading:

Enoch Powell once remarked: ‘For a politician to complain about the press, is like a ship’s captain complaining about the sea.’ As these proceedings demonstrate, a politician litigating about the barbs of a political adversary might be considered a similarly futile exercise.