Andrew Bolt says it all —- no explanation needed. This is the Senator that is standing up for the taxi industry and its people.
April 6, 2017 12:00am
ABC: One Nation a ‘brutal dictatorship’
Attack on One Nation ‘fits leftist agenda’
THE ABC tried this week to destroy Pauline Hanson — again — in yet another abuse of its massive power. And it didn’t only advertise its Leftist bias in attacking a party of the Right. The ABC’s Four Corners also may have broken the law, airing a secretly taped phone call between Hanson and a One Nation senator.
TERRY SWEETMAN: ABC said what we were all thinking
Monday’s Four Corners started by flagging its agenda, asking: “Are the wheels falling off the One Nation wagon?” The short answer is, of course, no. Hanson’s party has four senators in federal parliament and has just had three MPs elected to the West Australian Upper House. Newspoll this week also showed it has national support of 10 per cent.
But Four Corners, in my opinion, tried every trick to make you think One Nation was not just failing but much more extreme than it is.
For a start, it loaded the dice. It interviewed a swag of former One Nation members or employees who clearly had an axe to grind — they’d been sacked, or stopped from using Hanson’s party to run their own race.
One Nation was “grubby”, claimed one dumped candidate. Hanson “burns people”, spat another party reject, who Four Corners didn’t mention was a bankrupt.
Reporter Caro Meldrum-Hanna also trawled a pub in St George to find drinkers with “strong views” who — by some amazing coincidence — made One Nation seem racist or xenophobic by their support.
One man wanted to keep out “Pakistanians” and an inarticulate woman wanted no more immigrants
“The ABC uses Nazi-style mind control”
But what Four Corners didn’t show was One Nation candidate Tsung Chang, an articulate Malaysian-born immigrant. That was strange, because Four Corners spent two days filming Chang, a ratings analyst, as he campaigned for last month’s WA poll. Chang says he’d told Meldrum-Hanna he supported One Nation. He said Four Corners had also filmed his campaign volunteers, including an Indian and two ethnic Chinese. Yet Four Corners ran not one second of him or them. Why? Didn’t Chang fit its Hanson-is-a-bigot script?
The same trick was played in making One Nation seem homophobic. In the program, Meldrum-Hanna asks One Nation senator Malcolm Roberts about “endorsed candidates (who) have said such things as … gays should be treated as patients (and) the gay community uses Nazi-style mind control”. But Four Corners didn’t say One Nation had sacked the first of those candidates. Nor did it reveal that Hanson’s powerful chief-of-staff, James Ashby, is openly gay
Then there were the double standards. One Nation was correctly criticised for having let through some fruitloop candidates but then attacked as a “brutal dictatorship” after Hanson and Ashby cracked down and dumped non-performers.
And that’s when the ABC seemed to break the law. Twice.
First, it broadcast what it boasted was a “secretly recorded phone hook-up between James Ashby and a group of Queensland candidates”, in which Ashby simply warns that “Pauline’s watching your (web) pages”.
It then broadcast what it said was a “secretly” recorded call between Hanson and then One Nation senator Rod Culleton. Again, no wrongdoing was revealed. Hanson is heard just telling Culleton angrily he’d lost the right to be a senator given he’d had a larceny conviction when elected. Indeed, the High Court later threw him out of parliament. So why did Four Corners broadcast Hanson and Ashby’s private phone calls, in what seems to be defiance of the law? As Rick Sarre, a University of South Australia professor of law, has noted: “It is an offence in all jurisdictions to broadcast without permission a recording of a covertly taped conversation or publish the information from it.”
Only one allegation from this hatchet job may have real substance — One Nation may have failed to declare a donation. Four Corners suggested one of the party’s biggest donors, developer Bill McNee, perhaps helped it buy a Jabiru aircraft, worth $110,000 new.
In fact, Ashby, who is also Hanson’s pilot, says he bought the plane himself and both he and McNee, an Ashby client, deny McNee donated it. But both Labor and the Liberals have pounced, asking the Australian Electoral Commission to investigate. We’ll see.
Yet contrast Four Corners’ intense interest in this technicality with its ho-hum coverage of the $40,000 a boss gave Labor leader Bill Shorten when he headed a union — a gift Shorten didn’t declare until a royal commission came sniffing eight years later.
Hanson’s fans will see this ABC smear job as entirely justifying their support. Here’s the Leftist state come to crush the outsider.
So, no, the wheels aren’t falling off One Nation. It’s the ABC that’s out of control.