Orwellian media manipulation: PM’s answer to ‘Dorothy Dixer’ published before he uttered the words

Mar 19, 2021
Tamed Estate

Look over there, mate. Should we really ignore a rape allegation against the first law officer of the nation because Labor also has skeletons in its closet?

There was some truly Orwellian media manipulation this week.

Nine’s Chris Uhlmann appeared to be in cahoots with the Prime Minister, as sleuthed by Twitter-commentator RonniSalt and reported by Paul Karp from The Guardian.

In an article published at 9:19am on Wednesday morning, Rachael Dexter reported an answer to a question that was asked of Prime Minister Scott Morrison in his press conference. The twist? The question wasn’t asked, and the answer not given, until just before 10am.

The Sydney Morning Herald

Stalking and threats

I think shes

Tweet from RonniSalt

RonniSalt Tweet

Industrial Relations reform

As the government’s IR bill headed to a vote in the Senate on Thursday, the fear was palpable that it would not pass.

While previously the media had focused on defending the IR changes as modest, The Australian Financial Review and The Australian dialled up the rhetoric to 11 through the week, instilling concerns of “major job losses” and perpetrating the myth that casuals who receive entitlements would be double-dipping given their “25% loading” – a loading that has been extensively shown to be a fantasy.

Oh, and they kept flogging the dead horse that the changes were “mild” or “modest”.

The Australian Financial Review:

IR bill: Crossbenchers should support

David Martin-Guzmann

IR Bill: Crossbench warned

Jennifer Hewett

IR Bill: anxious wait

IR Bill: double dipping

David Martin-Guzmann again

IR Bill: bosses put heat on

The Australian:

IR Bill: Massive job loss warning

Christian Porter Round 3

Attorney General Christian Porter, recuperating while on indefinite, taxpayer-funded mental health leave, came out all-guns blazing by launching a defamation case against the ABC.

Who would have thought engaging high-powered lawyers and planning and implementing a case of defamation could be such a healing experience.

As has also been noted, the defamation action may ease pressure on Scott Morrison to hold an independent inquiry to determine whether Porter is a fit and proper person for his position. In other word, no inquiries until the action has been heard.

The media also come out all-guns blazing as the trial-by-media of the alleged victim entered its third week, even as Peter van Onselen at The Australian bemoaned the lack of justice and the horrors of trial by media.

The Australian

Porter defamation case

Despite being old, old friends with Porter – a friendship he did not disclose –  van Onselen continued defending the Attorney-General, and saw fit to publish the words of the alleged victim, even though he didn’t “want to add to their (the family’s) grief”.

And he was only too happy to join reporter Sharri Markson in trying to cast doubt on the nature of the relationship between the alleged victim and her friends who have been supporting her.

And again, of course, it was Porter who was the victim.

Porter Defamation: Kate dossier

Porter defamation grief of family

Porter defamation: alleged victim's friends

Sharri Markson in The Australian

Porter Risky legal bid

Porter case

Elsewhere, Andrew Bolt at The Herald Sun did what Andrew Bolt does, and put to the side all notions of balance in the pursuit of outrage and clicks, blaring that the alleged victim should not be believed.

Andrew Bolt: Nine reasons not to

Andrew Bolt and the ABC

And he joined Dennis Shanahan at The Australian in blatant what-about-ism.

Should we really ignore a rape allegation against our first law officer because there are also reports of sexual harassment in the Labor caucus?

The Herald Sun

Andrew Bolt Labor's hypocrisy

The Australian

Hypocrisy haunts Labor's

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