Home > #NewsCorpFail, #Ozfail, Media > Murdochracy vs Quiggin: another round

Murdochracy vs Quiggin: another round

August 11th, 2011

A couple of very minor updates on my stoush with News Limited, and particularly the Oz. In my response to Michael Stutchbury I raised two main complaints. First, Stutchbury was being precious in complaining about vigorous language on my part, given that the Oz editorial team (writing under cover of anonymity) had accused me of having a totalitarian mindset, but didn’t have the guts to name me, referring instead to an opinion writer in a financial tabloid. My second complaint was that Stutchbury was being disingenuous in claiming that the Oz supported carbon prices.

The other day, my Facebook news feed included a link to a Stutchbury piece from July referring to Abbott “mounting a powerful case against Gillard’s carbon tax”. Not exactly consistent with the supposed Oz line! As you would expect from someone who opposes a per tonne tax on something he believes to be weightless, Abbott’s arguments were in fact lame. The points that most impressed Stutchbury relied on Bjorn Lomborg’s Copenhagen Consensus exercise, something that even people on the right saw through years ago.

Trying to locate the piece again, I stumbled on this piece of snark (scroll to the end) in the “Cut and Paste” section, where the anonymous troll who runs the piece thought it clever to repeat the “opinion writer in a financial tabloid” jibe. Totally gutless. And these guys look down on bloggers.

Meanwhile, the Australian’s War on Science continues. Tim Lambert has instalment #67.

Update And, what do you know? Twitter tells me that today’s Cut and Paste has cited the Williamson review of Zombie Economics, without, of course, mentioning the fact that it has been comprehensively trashed in the blogosphere. I wonder if Williamson would be happy about being quoted approvingly by the gutter press. As for me, any publicity is good publicity. If the Oz opinion page weren’t so unreadable, I could expect a bit of a bump in book sales from this free plug.

Categories: #NewsCorpFail, #Ozfail, Media Tags:
  1. gerard
    August 11th, 2011 at 10:09 | #1

    first paragraph incomplete? –fixed now, thanks

  2. may
    August 11th, 2011 at 12:01 | #2

    when asked by the British parliament if he was responsible for the illegal actvities of his subordinates,murdoch said”no”,but he was the” best person “to clean up the consequences.

    when the directors of james hardy were asked if they were responsible for grossly underestimating the money cost of asbestosis they said “no” and were corrected in their assumption of non-responsibility.(asbestos was known to be a dangerous substance since the 1930’s.)

    how come the assumtion of non-responsibility claimed by murdoch is accepted?

  3. may
    August 11th, 2011 at 12:02 | #3


  4. KB Keynes
    August 11th, 2011 at 12:05 | #4

    The Australian has no shame

  5. may
    August 11th, 2011 at 12:24 | #5

    yeah well that’s a given.

    the utter contempt for any thing/one(or two) who get in the way of corporate lordship seems to be a given as well.

    the costs incurred by their activities externalised.

    the sneaky pseudo respectability needed to disguise the massive transfer of assets from the public purse to corporate control has lost it’s charm.

    i’m still chuntering about the claim that paying a fairer share of massive profits by the mining industry constituted a sovereign risk.

    more like the huge fiscal heft used by these entities playing one state off against the other is the sovereign risk.

    mere opinion—-roger-over and out.

  6. Freelander
    August 11th, 2011 at 13:04 | #6

    I am always amused by journalists, usually the clown journalists rather than the excellent ones, who look down on blogs and bloggers. Bloggers invite review and examination, journalists of the worst type live a largely unexamined life. For the unexamined world look no further than the Murdoch media, the Australian and the FoxNews Network.

  7. Sean
    August 11th, 2011 at 13:10 | #7

    Who writes the Cut and Paste column anyway? The fact that it is written without an author tag suggests it would be a member of the editorial staff. Tim Lambert caught them doctoring quotes from the IPCC recently, making them appear to support The Oz’s anti-AGW agenda. This is a clear indication that their editors do not just condone, but actively engage in the worst sort of intellectual dishonesty.

  8. Freelander
    August 11th, 2011 at 13:18 | #8

    I like the way that Stutchbury vigorously disputed your recollection that he was encouraged to write his original piece on you and requested you to retract.

    Question, is was his request for you to retract your recollection spontaneous or was he leaned on (again)?

    Such sensitive flowers at the Australian. No wonder these types of ‘like-minded’ individuals need to cling to one and other in sequestered environments, free from conflicting thoughts and disturbing facts.

  9. Fran Barlow
    August 11th, 2011 at 13:19 | #9


    It will come as no suprise that I strongly support the substance of your objections above. Few things amuse me more than to take a swing at Abbott’s dissembling/cluelessness (take your pick) on matters of science and public policy. That said:

    As you would expect from someone who opposes a per tonne tax on something he believes to be weightless, Abbott’s arguments were in fact lame.

    They were indeed lame, and as many have pointed out, he was a cabinet minister when Shergold/Howard established the protocol for measuring this “weightless” substance. Strictly speaking though, what was being measured then and now is not CO2e by weight but by mass. An object with a mass of one tonne at sea level will have a gravitational force of 9880 Newtons — so it will “weigh” one tonne. On the moon of course, about 1/6th the gravitational force would apply, so it would “weigh” about 167 kg.


  10. ennui
    August 11th, 2011 at 13:42 | #10

    I’m not sure that Cut’npaste is the sole domain of one particular person. To my knowledge one of the regular contributors is Catherine Overington – so the ‘engaging in intellectual dishonesty’ should come as no surprise

  11. August 11th, 2011 at 13:47 | #11

    My 2 cents:

    1. These blogger-haters did a real job on ‘Grog’s Gamut’ beating their chests about their inalienable right to expose someone else’s identity.

    2. Yet another News Corp hacker arrested today.

    3. What a coincidence May mentions Murdoch spin and James Hardie Asbestos spin in one post. James Hardie’s chief spinner at that time was Greg Baxter. News Ltd’s chief spinner today is Greg Baxter.

    And they just can’t fathom why everyone hates them so much.

  12. August 11th, 2011 at 13:59 | #12

    Here is a brilliant exchange in Court when Mr Baxter was giving evidence in the James Hardie “Asbestos Fund Fully Funded” case:

    Walker: Looking at it now, as a professional in investor relations, you accept, don’t you, that the disclaimer destroys the main message

    Baxter: No.

    Q: The main message is, ‘There will be sufficient funds to meet future claims’ – isn’t that right?

    A: Yes.

    Q: The disclaimer says, ‘That may not happen’, doesn’t it?

    A: Yes.

    Q: In your world, is there not a contradiction between those two statements?

    A: No.

    That’s how these people work.

    Read the full report from ‘The Justinian’:


  13. Freelander
    August 11th, 2011 at 16:07 | #13

    A bit like the Tony Abbott disclaimer about not to believe a word he says unless he gives it to you in writing.

  14. fred
    August 11th, 2011 at 16:37 | #14


    My favourite example of that is when Abbott gave a written promise and then immediately broke it verbally.

    Remember this?

    “TONY Abbott has signed a “contract” promising that Work Choices is dead and buried but he continues to muddle his message on the controversial laws.

    “Give me a bit of paper, I’ll sign it here,” Mr Abbott said to 3AW host Neil Mitchell as he tried to end questions about John Howard’s divisive workplace laws.
    But pressed again by Mitchell, Mr Abbott said: “I can’t give an absolute guarantee about every single aspect of workplace relations …”

    From here [sorry its a link to the OO, sorry, I mean I’m really sorry]:

  15. fred
    August 11th, 2011 at 16:39 | #15

    Here is the message repeated, that is stuck in moderation. minus the [offending?] link.


    My favourite example of that is when Abbott gave a written promise and then immediately broke it verbally.

    Remember this?

    “TONY Abbott has signed a “contract” promising that Work Choices is dead and buried but he continues to muddle his message on the controversial laws.

    “Give me a bit of paper, I’ll sign it here,” Mr Abbott said to 3AW host Neil Mitchell as he tried to end questions about John Howard’s divisive workplace laws.
    But pressed again by Mitchell, Mr Abbott said: “I can’t give an absolute guarantee about every single aspect of workplace relations …”

  16. Freelander
    August 11th, 2011 at 16:41 | #16

    Tony Abbott promises not to call it ‘Work Choices’ or even ‘Work Choices II’ perhaps it will be called ‘Freedom through Work’?

  17. malcolm
    August 11th, 2011 at 17:56 | #17

    I’m just a bloke living in the bush so I have no idea really but I have a feeling that JQ will be around longer than the rag mistitled as The Australia. Surely once dear Rupert goes( and at 80 how much longer can he remain as the boss of a company the size of News Corp?) then a number of loss making so called newspapers will be dumped. Why would any company run by sane business people want to keep them except to influence local politics and how many people on the board of News Corp give a stuff about Australia besides the Murdock family?

  18. fred
    August 11th, 2011 at 18:20 | #18

    I wish you were right malcolm but I fear you are wrong.
    I strongly suspect that apart from the uttering of a few platitudes and some lacy window dressing the essence of the Murdoch mafia media in Oz will continue post Rupert pretty much as now.
    Because the loss of a few paltry millions of dollars is small change, petty cas, and well worth the expenditure to have such huge influence on government policy and public awareness on issues and ethos that directly relates to …business.
    The indirect return to business is enormous, think carbon ‘tax’, climate change denial, the mining royalties proposal [I forget the actual acronym], financial shenanigans, tax cuts for the rich and many other issues which effect and affect the sponsors of Ltd News ie business, both at a corporate and personal level.
    Its a tiny investment for a huge return.
    Rupert is just the current head of Ltd News, there is a whole swag of clones standing in the queue behind him.

  19. sam
    August 11th, 2011 at 19:39 | #19

    I think Malcolm’s right. The actual figures for The Australian’s profitability aren’t too good. The Drum today had a good interview with Stephen Mayne on the recent Newscorp shareholder meeting. He said there is quite a bit of grumbling by the board about Rupert’s obsession with loss-making (but influence-garnering) national newspapers, and a suggestion it might not continue to support him.

    I for one would not mourn the death of any major newspaper in Australia today. I think large private media organisations run in the interests of billionaires severely degrade the quality of our democracy, and the sooner they are killed off the better.

  20. sam
    August 11th, 2011 at 19:44 | #20

    I agree with the substance of what you say here Freelander, but be careful with the Godwin.

  21. Freelander
    August 11th, 2011 at 20:48 | #21

    Who cares about Godwin, the Godwin stuff is silly.

  22. alfred venison
    August 11th, 2011 at 21:12 | #22

    dear Freelander
    “Who cares about Godwin, the Godwin stuff is silly.”
    after all, a crypto-fascist is a crypto-fascist, godwin or no godwin.
    yours sincerely
    alfred venison

  23. Mulga Mumblebrain
    August 11th, 2011 at 21:19 | #23

    Of all ‘The Fundament’s’ many repulsive features, I’d put the Kingdom of Snide Pettifogging also known as ‘Cut and Paste’ near the top. It’s creator clearly fancies him or herself a superior type, intellectually, while clearly not being one, or being a rank humbug if it be so. I get the ‘bouquet’ of ‘Cut and Paste’ whenever I hear Christian Kerr enjoying a meeting of minds with his fellow News Corpse employee, Phillip Adams on LNL, so he’s my pick.

  24. Freelander
    August 11th, 2011 at 22:18 | #24

    @alfred venison

    Too right. And so are decrypted-fascists!

  25. Sam
    August 12th, 2011 at 01:06 | #25

    Anyone who flagrantly confirms Godwin’s law is just like Hitler.

  26. Mulga Mumblebrain
    August 12th, 2011 at 08:27 | #26

    Actually, reading the snide sliming of ‘Cut and Paste’ yesterday was almost a relief after the deranged viciousness of the opinion columns regarding the UK riots. As could confidently have been predicted these long anticipated explosions of inchoate rage (by a tiny few, amongst whom I would bet, were a few provocateurs, of the type we have discovered were placed amongst environmental groups over many years)are being used by the Right to further their program of relentless class and race hatred and unremitting social sadism. The template they are aiming for, in the UK, and here once Abbott ascends, is the USA. In a little essay I read yesterday Barbara Ehrenreich, the author of the excellent ‘Nickle and Dimed’, re-contacted some of the working poor in the US whose plight she had portrayed in that book, on the tenth anniversary of the book’s publication. She found, unsurprisingly, that their circumstances were worse than ever, and had spread to millions more. And she outlined a few of the myriad ways in which the glorious ‘Free Market’ capitalist paradise of the USA sadistically and cruelly, and with scarcely credible remorselessness and absolute lack of any empathy or compassion, victimises and terrorises the poor. Of course this is the ethos of the psychopath raised to the level not just of social and state policy, but of the mindset and mentality of millions, most of whom would loudly proclaim their ‘Christianity’. And it’s coming here, as the system collapse gathers pace.
    Of all the barking Rightwing sludge exuded by ‘The Fundament’ yesterday, that of Anthony Daniels (aka Theodore Dalrymple) was, as ever, notable. His schtick, as we all know, is to traduce working class ‘chavs’ as, basically, ‘the scum of the earth’, and blame the ‘do-gooders’ for making them so. The outrageous injustices and inequalities of market capitalism in the UK remain unmentionable. His diatribes are very popular with the Right (Bob Carr was a big fan-probably still is)./ Well, in my opinion, Mr Daniels hit some sort of all-time low, for himself and ‘The Fundament’, with his abusive attack on Amy Whitehouse, her 27 year-old corpse barely cold. Read it, and I defy you not to be struck by the pitiless lack of compassion and humanity.

  27. rog
    August 12th, 2011 at 09:46 | #27

    I agree, notwithstanding the facts of Amy Winehouses’s life the manner in which Daniels spoke of her shows a basic lack of decency and a contempt for fellow human beings. That this piece is then being quoted by others shows poor judgement on their part.

  28. Freelander
    August 12th, 2011 at 10:14 | #28

    Too true. The moral depravity of the lower classes fully justifies the contemptible way their betters continue to treat them. They are all ‘undeserving’ poor, which is to say, they deserve to be poor, unlike their moral superior betters who don’t attempt to dodge their obligations, like paying taxes, like not cheating on expense claims, or any of the other privileges that are simply their birthright.

    Looking eastward, there is no doubt that Arab’s have good reason for their Arab Spring, but there is no possible reason for this English Summer. Just totally inexplicable. What was that nominal trigger. Some policing action against one of their elk? Why would they possibly be angry with the police and with their treatment by the British establishment?

  29. bill
    August 12th, 2011 at 10:43 | #29

    Godwin’s Guideline, perhaps?

    It is, after all, generally an own-goal to publicly proclaim that an opponent is acting like a fascist; but if they announce some idiocy along the lines of ‘we are going to come for you, scientists, and we’ll try you, and we’ll lock you up’, well, the resemblance certainly becomes uncanny!

    I also think that both the ‘ad hominem’ fallacy – there isn’t a human on earth who doesn’t routinely use the ‘source credibility’ filter in a world swamped with information – and the ‘appeal to authority’ fallacy – look to the climate debate as to what happens when the unqualified claim equality in a scientific debate – are not fallacies at all, though they also contain the kernel of a useful guideline…

  30. bill
    August 12th, 2011 at 10:44 | #30

    D’oh! Sorry, the close bracket on the b after ‘Godwin’s Guideline’ failed there. Only that phrase should be in bold.

  31. alfred venison
    August 12th, 2011 at 11:46 | #31

    dear Freelander
    “decrypted fascists” – nice one!
    sort of (in fact “vividly”) reminds me of phillip ruddock
    i love a good pun in the morning; you’ve made my day.
    yours sincerely
    alfred venison

  32. Freelander
    August 12th, 2011 at 12:53 | #32

    Deciphered, undead and out of the crypt.

  33. canberra boy
    August 12th, 2011 at 13:26 | #33

    @Freelander #28 I hadn’t realised what it was that sparked the riots and looting, but know that you have mentioned it I think the police were totally justified in apprehending the elk: it was guaranteed to be an illegal immigrant and elk are known as carriers of infectious disease which can spread to livestock…

  34. may
    August 12th, 2011 at 13:40 | #34

    the rise and rise of the persuasion industry (science AND art) has it’s logical conclusion in Britain,they grabbed all the “name”brands.
    i wonder if the agencies that worked so hard to bring these goods to the paragon of desirability they have attained will be the recipients of industry awards?

    ” most items looted” category.

    and number 1 son(or is it number 2) looks about to be thrown to the wolves by good old dad. (nah,he wouldn’t do that,would he? must be my suspicious mind or something to do with number 3 wife?)

    over 50,000 employees and a share buyback in the works and Italia entering the ever widening picture.if i worked there i’d be checking my life jacket for pins.

  35. Freelander
    August 12th, 2011 at 14:33 | #35

    Sorry, should have been ilk, and they didn’t apprehend they shot him dead and presumably then asked questions. Would have been fine if it was an elk, but it wasn’t.

    Back on topic and to May’s original post… Murdoch is all care about money but no responsibility for how it’s acquired. It is a pity that the global turmoil, the downturn and the riots, has pushed the focus off the evil one and his minions. Not to worry, they have arrested another from the Murdoch stable. Will be interesting to see if any of them start to sing. Or maybe they will all suffer convenient heart attacks?

  36. Freelander
    August 12th, 2011 at 15:34 | #36

    Also on topic, there is now a website so people can ‘sign’ an online petition calling for an inquiry into the media:
    Personally, regarding Murdoch, I think they should “do the b’stard slowly”. A full inquiry should happen after the federal police and ASIO conduct investigations to see if the media has engaged in wrong doing. ASIO because, at least in the British context, some of the Murdoch media activities had security implications. And then when sufficient information has been accumulated both within Australia and from on going investigations in the UK and USA, have an inquiry. We should learn from how Nixon was brought down – not all at once, but by the drip, drip, drip that kept him in front of the media.

  37. Mulga Mumblebrain
    August 12th, 2011 at 18:35 | #37

    Come home, turn on the radio, and guess who the ABC has on? Why, none other than Anthony Daniels (alias Theodore Dalrymple). This sort of ‘spooky synchronicity’ where a Rightwing blatherer appears one day on the ABC, the next somewhere in Murdochian Evil Empire, or vice versa, is pretty well ubiquitous these days. Of course it is simply a symptom of the ABC’s total subservience to the Rightwing ideology that is as near to a state religion as we have in this country. And News Corpse is the chief ideological standover man and enforcer for that received wisdom.
    Hearing Daniels is always a joy. His accent, part unalloyed condescension (no doubt born of a belief inculcated from birth in his genetic distinction)part lip-curling contempt for the human dross that he abuses, flirts with self-parody. No wonder Bob Carr adores him! It wasn’t hard for the ABC interlocutor to draw out Daniel’s plan for the ‘chavs’. Abolish welfare, abolish education, stiffen the laws, ‘free up’ the labour market and let the scum sink or swim. I think it was agreed that he meant get a job or starve. If they step over the mark, (as defined by superior types like Daniels of course) then lock ’em up. Were the elite ever this vicious even in the depths of Victorian class hatred?
    This sort of robust social maliciousness and malevolence is now absolutely ubiquitous on the Right. Throw the lower class into the pit, murder climate scientists, cheer as refugees drown, drive blackfellas off their outstations, slash the public service, bring back ‘Serf Choices’ to increase ‘productivity’ (ie labour exploitation)etc. And, as the global system collapses, we can be absolutely certain that the Right’s response will be rising anger and hatred and violent attacks on others, in order to protect their privileges and ideological domination of global society. There are legions of Breiviks out there, feeding off toxic dross like this, and growing more hateful and determined by the day. It looks very much to me like we are embarking on an accelerating descent into chaos and horror.

  38. Freelander
    August 12th, 2011 at 18:54 | #38

    Effectively, Rupert ‘owns’ the ABC nowadays, yet we still pay for it through our taxes. John Howard certainly managed a ruthless ‘culture’ change at the ABC during his decade long rule. The ‘cherry’ must have been when Rupert gave the Boyer Lectures where he talked about his Golden Age of Freedom. Too bad the Freedom doesn’t extend to anyone else.

  39. Jill Rush
    August 12th, 2011 at 19:06 | #39

    I wonder if anyone will look at the anger of the people about the fortunes of the Murdoch Media and the politicians in the UK. How angry were the people at the gross invasions of privacy by the press while the police fiddled?
    Unless there is an enquiry into the media in Australia we won’t know what is happening because while all of the media are saying there are no problems here – well they would say that wouldn’t they.
    In the meantime let’s hope that the Oz keeps on giving Prof Q free advertisements.

  40. Donald Oats
    August 12th, 2011 at 19:49 | #40

    In my opinion, Howard employed the “poisoning the well” technique to damage the ABC in the eyes of what he presumed to be the constituent audience, namely left-leaning socially liberal people. Oddly enough, conservative types that are bushies have always preferred the ABC as their channel of choice (once upon a time it would have been one of only two channels available, but no more). I reckon Howard hoped that if he could weaken the ABC’s connection with the left-leaning—ie, from progressive liberal through to the commies—then that combined with right wing hatred would be enough to eventually mount an argument for privatising the ABC.

    If that was Howard’s strategy, then the next Liberal government has a strong basis for claiming that the ABC isn’t much different (anymore, thanks to Howard’s earlier stacking efforts) from the commercial stations it supposedly exists in contradistinction to, and therefore it should be privatised. My view is that unless Labor want the privatisation to go ahead, the ALP needs to be proactive in ensuring an “unstacking is done” so that left/right biases are minimised at the ABC and they should get back to what they once did with excellence. The ALP won’t do this though, and so I think Howard’s legacy will be that the weakened support for the ABC allows it to be privatised by the next Liberal government.

  41. August 12th, 2011 at 21:22 | #41


    “..unless Labor want the privatisation to go ahead..”

    That’s a pretty big ‘unless’.

  42. Freelander
    August 12th, 2011 at 23:32 | #42

    Yes. Not much point in having an ABC if it is simply more of the same, or as it currently is, worst of the same.

  43. Graduate Student in Economics
    August 13th, 2011 at 05:43 | #43

    Professor Quiggin: Here a review of your book:


  44. Charles
    August 13th, 2011 at 06:06 | #44

    @Fran Barlow
    In other words, when time isn’t distorted by matter Carbon Dioxide is almost weightless.

  45. Freelander
    August 13th, 2011 at 08:03 | #45

    @Graduate Student in Economics

    Ignoring the content of this review, which after all has been well and truly dealt with already, maybe it is worth commenting on the essay’s style. When venting one’s spleen a minimum benchmark to aim for is to write well and entertain the audience. I always enjoy reading a good piece of vitriol even if I don’t agree with the argument or with the sentiment being directed toward the target. Sadly, despite the reviewer having obvious animus for Zombie Economics and its author, the review is poorly written and not in the least entertaining. Sadder still is the apparent delusion of the reviewer that they have achieved something.

  46. Graduate Student in Economics
    August 13th, 2011 at 09:34 | #46

    Mr/Miss Freelander:
    What do you mean when you say “Ignoring the content of this review, which after all has been well and truly dealt with already, maybe it is worth commenting on the essay’s style?” This reads like a cheap high school debating tactic to ignore the substance of the matter. It sounds to me like you are Quiggin groupie. Fine, some people adore Lindsey Lohan. Just don’t tell me that she doesn’t drink, doesn’t do drugs, and is really smart. And, don’t tell me that Professor Quiggin knows finance or macroeconomics. He doesn’t. What your definition of animus: “Things that disagree with my notion of how the world works.”

  47. John Quiggin
    August 13th, 2011 at 09:39 | #47

    It appears that the sole point is that I didn’t cite some papers the author had to study in grad school (all of which fit into the “general equilibrium with a twist” tradition that I describe). Interestingly, the author appears entirely unaware that anything of interest in macroeconomic experience (as opposed to theory) has been happening in the last few years. Doubtless that’s good preparation for a job market paper aimed at a highly ranked journal.

  48. Fran Barlow
    August 13th, 2011 at 10:43 | #48

    @Donald Oats

    According to Chris Mitchell (editor of The OZ), Fran Kelly’s Breakfast show on RN is one of the top 3 news sources.

    From the POV of the Murdochracy, it makes sense to praise their echochamber.

  49. Fran Barlow
    August 13th, 2011 at 10:53 | #49


    Certainly I regard the News & Current Affairs portions of the ABC as worse than redundant. They largely launder the Murdochracy‘s talking points. To paraphrase Pell, it’s ABC News & Current Affairs which is honeyed poison.

    Let them take a sabbatical. With a couple of honourable exceptions, let them be sent out to rediscover how to be professional journalists. and to keep a firewall between themselves and the Murdochracy. Let them be acquainted with the notion of intellectual rigour. Let the ABC forget about being “first with the news” and instead focus on being “first with something worthwhile reading, hearing or seeing”. Let nobody dare confuse news with light entertainment.

    Then let these renovated journos slowly be integrated back into the world of reporting on and analysing the news.

  50. Freelander
    August 13th, 2011 at 11:57 | #50

    @Graduate Student in Economics

    Squealing like a stuck pig! Love the sound and fury. A graduate no less! Some Cum Loudly? We are honoured. And almost as profound as the review.

  51. alfred venison
    August 13th, 2011 at 12:40 | #51

    dear Donald Oates
    thanks for that observation & the helpful metaphor of “poisoning the well” – you have succinctly captured a dread i’ve harbored for years about what howard (hack, spit!) was really up to all those years ago. there is an additional problem, that Fran Barlow (hi Fran) touches on with the metaphor (taken from the execrable pell) of “honeyed poison”, which i would like to expand upon a little. i know a rusted on abc viewer/listener who for years persisted with the view that the abc was the trustworthy source of news & current affairs that it had always been since he was a boy. he’s come around now, but i wonder how many people in the community are like he was, still getting their news from the abc & trusting it as if it had never been hollowed out. this is another side of howard’s insidious undermining of the national broadcaster. we’re ok – we understand what’s happening & are angry about it. and my mate’s ok, now, too. but many trusting people nowadays get the murdoch world view with an abc “imprimatur” (don’t like me using that word pell? take a jump). its insidious & leaves me worried whether the abc can ever be recovered from this debauching.

    i’ll add more metaphor to an already well stocked pot by observing that the murdoch abc reminds me of a german “false flag” commerce raider in the world wars – those that would haul up a nicaraguan (or other neutral flag) & close range on their unsuspecting merchant marine prey, before revealing their true colors & true intentions, too late, of course, for the victim/target.

    yours sincerely
    alfred venison

  52. may
    August 13th, 2011 at 16:41 | #52

    Graduate Student in Economics :@Freelander Mr/Miss Freelander:What do you mean when you say “Ignoring the content of this review, which after all has been well and truly dealt with already, maybe it is worth commenting on the essay’s style?” This reads like a cheap high school debating tactic to ignore the substance of the matter. It sounds to me like you are Quiggin groupie. Fine, some people adore Lindsey Lohan. Just don’t tell me that she doesn’t drink, doesn’t do drugs, and is really smart. And, don’t tell me that Professor Quiggin knows finance or macroeconomics. He doesn’t. What your definition of animus: “Things that disagree with my notion of how the world works.”

    after all these years JQ,you’ve hit the big time.

    you’ve aquired a groupie.

    you’re in man,no sweat.

  53. Freelander
    August 13th, 2011 at 17:16 | #53

    Poor Graduate Student in Economics

    Gee, I thought the content had been well and truly trashed already quite comprehensively. I didn’t detect anything new? Maybe I’m wrong?

    I was simply trying to be helpful to the reviewer. All my noble and selfless deeds constantly misinterpreted. One more (helpful) point I should have added on that review. These types of reviews work best when the animus and vitriol are far better disguised. When the malicious intent is so transparent, the writing suffers and bears the marks of a lack of control. Difficult to write well and be entertaining when not in control of one’s emotions. No wonder they consoled him with what the told him was an economics degree when they decided he’d outstayed his welcome at clown college.

  54. Mulga Mumblebrain
    August 13th, 2011 at 18:17 | #54

    Guess who the irrespressible Geraldine Doogue chose to quote on the subject of the UK riots? Who else but Anthony Daniels, aka ‘Theodore Dalrymple’ of course. Once the Right decides to push you, you pop up everywhere in the apparat-the Noel Pearson effect. La Doogue described Daniels’ article in ‘The Fundament’ (The Fundamental Orifice of the Nation’) as ‘splenetic’, true enough, up to a point. How long before Mr Daniels graces Saturday Extra in person, for a ‘grilling’ by Geraldine, the intellectual equivalent of being savaged by a dead sheep.

  55. Freelander
    August 13th, 2011 at 19:04 | #55

    I hadn’t heard of the fellow before. Listening to him I wondered whether he was playing a caricature of a right-wing looney. The upper middle class affect and thinly disguised bigotry made me think he was some kind of English version of Stephen Colbert.

  56. John Quiggin
    August 13th, 2011 at 20:44 | #56

    Naughty, naughty: It appears that “Mr MIT”, “Kyle Lee” and “Graduate Student in Economics” are all the same person. The first two share an IP address and GSE’s review from econjobrumors was posted on Amazon by Mr MIT. And, sad to say, none of them post from an MIT IP address.

    The rules on this kind of sockpuppetry are clear. You’re banned immediately and permanently. Count yourself lucky I don’t complain to your university.

  57. alfred venison
    August 13th, 2011 at 21:47 | #57

    dear John Quiggin
    what a great catch!! and tracking ’em down to the amazon reviews, too. bravo!
    thank goodness alfred venison is a “persona” & not a sock puppet.
    yours sincerely
    alfred venison

  58. Freelander
    August 14th, 2011 at 00:48 | #58

    John Quiggin :
    Naughty, naughty: It appears that “Mr MIT”, “Kyle Lee” and “Graduate Student in Economics” are all the same person…
    The rules on this kind of sockpuppetry are clear. You’re banned immediately and permanently…

    Oh, damn, and he was giving us so many laughs!

    I particularly liked, in his review. “Me do big complicated maths… (dynamic programming, numerical analysis, stochastic processes)” [Oooo… Natives tremble in face of white man’s dark magic.] and the implicit “Einstein is an idiot, not worth quoting, who didn’t like quantum theory because he couldn’t do big maths like what I can”.

  59. Peter
    August 22nd, 2011 at 13:27 | #59

    I had a good laugh when a read the snark on “the considered economic theoretician tips over into Green Left Weekly polemics”. When an “activist newspaper” like The Australian criticises someone by comparing them to another “activist newspaper”, its a bit of a case of the pot calling the kettle black.

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