Was there anything more embarrassing out of Oz mainstream media over the weekend than SMH scribes David Crowe and some new chap called Noel Towell bending over backwards to excuse Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s “Shanghai Sam” denials.
While these two top political journos were distracted searching online for phone numbers for Hearing Australia and Specsavers, the rest of Australia watched and heard Morrison respond to this question – “Prime Minister, why was it racist to question Gladys Liu’s connections to China but it wasn’t racist to call Sam Dastyari ‘Shanghai Sam’?” – with a clear and precise “I didn’t use either of those phrases”.
But here was our brave scribes’ take on this, coming to the PM’s rescue with a statement of facts of their very own: It was not clear which phrase he was referring to…
NOT CLEAR! Sorry, lads. But it was clear to everyone else out there… unless you work as an LNP publicist… or cover politics for a major metropolitan daily. That’s assuming both of those are distinctively different job descriptions nowadays.
Sadly, just like many Newscorpse journos always seem to have that little voice saying in their heads “what would Rupert want?” as they write, it seems that more and more scribes at the former Fairfax titles now owned by Nine and chaired by Peter Costello have their own little voice whispering “What would Peter want?”
Unfair? Yet how else can we explain those weasel words used by Crowe and Towell? Why would any self-respecting journos give a politician let alone this PM any wriggle-room whatsever, when none was warranted or deserved?
We all know that Morrison used “Shanghai Sam” so many times that only two things are clear: “I didn’t use either of those phrases” is either a red-hot porkie or an untruth that should ring alarm bells as to the PM’s mental faculties and recall.
We at The Bug are pretty sure – about 99.99 per cent sure – that it was a red-hot porkie by the way Morrison tried to backtrack later on Ben Fordham’s program on 2GB by saying he had misheard the question and he was responding only to whether he had used the term “racist”.
Unless the PM always uses “I didn’t use either of those phrases” when referring to a single phrase, that was definitely a rolled-gold, top-shelf, RED HOT PORKIE from the Liar from the Shire.
Unless David Crowe and Noel Towell heard and saw that one differently as well?
Ben writes belligerently
Another newish name The Bug will be keeping an eye on as one of the SMH and Sun-Herald‘s finest and most objective political reporters of recent times takes up new overseas posting is a bloke called Ben Schneiders.
Check out the image at right to see how Ben absolutely nails the intro to his front-page yarn in Saturday’s SMH.
If we needed another reason not to like foul-mouthed union thug John Setka, Ben’s provided it.
The Victorian CFMMEU heavyweight has “belligerently” refused to resign as demanded by some ex-army jerk, right-wing nut job from Tasmania.
Yes, unless Setka quits, the Apple Isle’s little Aussie bogan-babbler Jacqui Lambie is going to vote – no doubt very very reluctantly – for some more draconian anti-union, anti-worker legislation from the worker-hating Morrison government.
Belligerently, Ben? Really?
The Bug will be keeping an eye on your stories from now on, along with this Noel Towell head.
Our guess is we’ll sometimes – perhaps often and quite possibly belligerently – be asking whether your writings are being inspired by that little voice in your heads: “What would Peter want?”