Tim Blair


New Criterion



Monday, June 02, 2003
YOU HAVE TO GIVE IT to Robert Cudgels Manne - he's consistent.

When he joined the gang attack on the gentle historian Keith Windschuttle for his book The Fabrication of Aboriginal History, he took the precaution of ingoring the more important 98% of what Windschuttle had to say. In favour of a personal attack.

He does the same with the Alston dossier on Auntie's anti-US bias in news and current affairs.

Only this time he totally ignores the subject in question; the spin put on AM's reports of the Iraq war.

When you're fighting gang wars it's best not to be distracted from the key issue - how best to put the boot in.

And so we have a McCarthyite conspiracy against free speech and it's all the fault of the usual suspects.

Cudgels should talk to a political scientist. He might find out that Senator McCarthy was out to find traitors under beds (and he found some) and was criticised for identifying dissent with treachery.

In this case the issue is whether the Australian public who pay for Auntie are entitled to a professional public broadcaster, or do we just have to go on paying for one that pushes a line old Cudgels agrees with.

We now know Robert Manne's answer.