Murdoch’s war on Labor voters

For Australian voters, the September 7 election comes down to this: “Do you want Kevin Rudd to be in charge of the country or Rupert Murdoch?”
That’s the election take of a friend of mine. He, like everybody else, is appalled by the conduct of Murdoch’s vile rags – the Sydney Daily Telegraph, Brisbane Courier-Mail, Melbourne Herald-Sun and the tablet of reactionary sophistry The Australian – which are running a relentless anti-Labour, anti-Greens campaign and backing an Abbott victory.
When Abbott reaches The Lodge, Murdoch will “own” him and expect generous favours in return for his election coverage. UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher obliged and so did Tony Blair.
Murdoch personally supervised the last anti-ALP vendetta in 1975 against the Whitlam Government. News Ltd journalists were so angry with the trashing of editorial fairness that they went on strike.
This time they are loyally pumping out the daily message of Murdoch vitriol. Instead of masterminding the election coverage himself, Murdoch has despatched his ever-faithful lieutenant Col Allan to supervise the project.
Over the decades, Murdoch has surrounded himself with knuckle-dragging executives such as Allan.
Another Murdoch favourite was Kelvin Mackenzie who edited Murdoch’s premier organ of utter backwardness, the London Sun, between 1981 and 1994.
When the whole world was appalled by phone-hacking of the mobile of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowling, Kelvin (“Thank god for Rupert Murdoch”) Mackenzie explained:
“What? Hacking a missing girl’s phone and deleting some of her messages so they can get more sordid details? That’s bloody good journalism! And if it gets more reaction out of the family, so much the better.”

Language of the loyalists

Another Murdoch loyalist is Richard Caseby who has just concluded 24 years with the Evil Empire’s UK operation where he served as managing editor of the Sunday Times and The News of the World (now deceased).
Caseby was hurt by a column item in The Guardian by Marina Hyde so he sent a roll of toilet paper to editor Alan Rushbridger saying:
“I heard Marina Hyde’s turd landed on your desk. Well, you can use this to wipe her arse.”
Uber-courtesan Kim Williams was head of the Oz branch of the Murdoch empire for two years. When confecting outrage over the Gillard government’s abortive press reforms Williams told a business lunch earlier this year that the proposed legislation was “bollocks”.
By using Murdoch’s blokey language he hoped to ingratiate him with the Supreme Leader, but it didn’t save him. He was unceremoniously dumped following the arrival of Col Allan.
The moral of the story is this: Murdoch uses his minions, saps the life and integrity out of them and then dumps them. Wives and family aren’t spared.
How ironic that he is now doing the same thing to Kevin Rudd and Bob Carr, who have prostrated themselves before Murdoch on countless occasions in the past. (Who do you think gave Murdoch the site for Fox Studios in central Sydney, the land supposedly in perpetual public ownership? Carr, of course.)
On the eve of the 1949 election, Prime Minister Ben Chifley sent a letter to “Laborites” saying:
“The Labor Government, therefore, gives an account of its stewardship to the people without fear. But vested interests, backed by limitless supplies of money, an overwhelming number of newspapers and an army of paid propagandists, have carried on a campaign of invective, malice and venom unknown in our political history. That onslaught can be met and beaten.”
It wasn’t. Chifley’s government went down in flames and Robert Menzies became prime minister of a Coalition government which ruled until 1972.
The Liberal Party’s chief propagandist in Victoria was the despotic Sir Keith Murdoch, of the Herald and Weekly Times, the father of Rupert.


  1. Well said, Alex. It’s hard for me to bag Rupert as he has mostly treated me well over almost 50 years.. I’ve edited two of his papers – The Daily Mirror & the mighty Truth in Melbourne & worked in senior roles on The Australian in the ’60s. However,he did let then News Ltd Chairman Ken May fire me as Editor of the Mirror when I refused to support then PM Malcolm Fraser in his mad plan to force our young athletes to boycott the 1980 Olympics in Moscow. But then he personally intervened to get me business when I opened my PR agency. He’s brilliant,& confusing & I like him enormously,even as I thoroughly disagree with his current political campaign here. He’s a gladiator. I think he’s a good person underneath it all. And he has a right to his opinion – as do the people who reject & condemn his views.

  2. Ah Alex, they will all – we will all – be levelled in the sweep of History, which I see increasingly as an endless series of dispossession. Whether it’s Rudd or Abbott, Murdoch or Menzies or Mao, or you or me in our own beaverings, we’re all like kids on the beach building sand castles we hope will last for ever but won’t be there next morning. All a little bleak, that “On the Beach” metaphor, but perhaps Ava Gardiner, Melbourne aside, had it right. Is there an Australian Dos Passos out there anywhere? We need a “BIg Money Downunder”.

  3. Enough is enough. Murdoch should be wanted for criminal activity in the UK. Obama’s campaign beat him in the US. And now he is here in Oz trying to win our election campaign to save his Foxtel interests and the destroy the NBN. Murdoch deserves the online boycott of his news facilities. His blatant bias and his vicious campaigning against the democratic will of the Australian people has to be stopped.There is a Facebook site encouraging the boycotting of Murdoch- Australia Boycotts Newscorp, Begins Aug 26. The messages there from contributors are revealing and there are cafes and newsagents refusing to sell and stock his rags. Some contributors have said they have cancelled their Foxtel subscriptions. If this got going as a mass movement it may have some impact. Any other suggestions from anyone?

  4. I, for one, have stopped buying the Courier-Mail. I’ve been aware of biased writing to undermine a candidate in related papers since 1983 or 1984 (Northern Miner, state election) and circa 1987 (front-page article, Townsville Bulletin, council election). No longer is it isolated instances.

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