Open forum: is social media starting to bite?

Let’s face it, over the last two and a half years the mainstream media (MSM) have waged a relentless attack on Julia Gillard and the Labor Government whilst giving Tony Abbott and his band of buffoons a free run at every turn. Tony Abbott holds a press conference and walks away from questions so the MSM condemn the Prime Minister for wearing glasses. The Prime Minister talks about policy yet the MSM report on the ‘poor’ timing of her election call. The Prime Minister talks about important issues facing the country but the Canberra Press Gallery decide they are not worth distributing to their readership. They decide that people want to hear about Craig Thomson or where the PM’s boyfriend parked his car at the cricket five weeks ago.

The PM announces the resignation of two Ministers so the media claim they are deserting a sinking ship. And they allow the Opposition to make the same call, without bothering to inform their loyal readers that the Opposition are losing nine members after this year’s election.

I could go on, but you get my drift.

But have you noticed, that despite all of this one-sided media loyalty and sub-standard journalism that the Opposition is losing ground in the polls? Why is this so? With the daily promotion of Tony Abbott and the daily condemnation of Julia Gillard you’d expect the gap to widen. And no matter how shrill, pathetic and biased the MSM behave, they’re not turning it around.

Have you noticed too, that the counter attack on social media has been just as aggressive? Facebook, Twitter, blogs and podcasts have become the haven for left-wing voices and opinions and the fact that Labor is creeping up the polls might suggest that they are now beginning to have an influence. Their reach is enormous. Is it possible that collectively they now have a bigger audience than the MSM? As more and more people engage in social media is it possible that they are now realising the MSM has been conning them? Are they finding that social media offers something refreshing: the truth?

What do you think?


141 comments on “Open forum: is social media starting to bite?

  1. Maybe the public is not as stupid as some think. I notice that on the polls, on many topics, there are up to 25% that have no opinion.

  2. My husband frequently talks to a wide variety of people in his work and often the conversation turns to politics. Many people who have been dyed in the wool Liberal voters simply cannot stand Tony Abbott. It is not unusual for them to tell my husband that they are in a dilemma because whetever happens they can not bring themselves to vote for the repugnant thug.

  3. I so hope you’re right. For all of us who are tuned in to political debate, you are definitely right. Unfortunately, the vast majority of voters are those who are impressed by Abbott’s antics. These voters are generally, and ironically, those who are the most vulnerable amongst us, and who will suffer most if Abbott becomes PM. I’ll be doing everything I can to try to prevent that from happening. But my heart is heavy with pessimism.

  4. I`ve been living overseas for the 12 months in South America. Needless to say apart from the fires and floods, no news about Australian politics or life gets reported here. So I have had to rely on the internet for my does of news from home. I check the ABC web site and occasionally The Age. My biggest influence however has been through social media Facebook and the like. Where friends and like minded recommend sites that you may like. The MSM or as I`ve come to call them “The MOLD” have completely lost my alligence. I do worry about only getting th enews that I agree with but in the places that I go they seem to be more interested in balance not properganda. When I return to Australia in the next few weeks I will continue to make Social Media my primary source of information. I would also like to give a plug to The Guardian and The Huffingtonpost both of these seem to be interested in holding up journalistic standards. This is just my opinion but from what I`ve seen the Mold have failed us as a democracy but they have failed themselves. Its not to late for them but it must be getting close. Its their fault for stepping away from their principles.

  5. There is no doubt that social media is becoming the main source for political information as the MSM fail to live up to their charter, not just in politics but that’s where their greatest failing is.

    There is also no doubt that the right wing zombie troll masters know this and it’s why you see them across the social walls, circles and hashtags, especially where there is a trending.

    But even here these Liberal propagandists totally rely on the MSM to regurgitate their lies and misinformation.For example in #auspol there is a Liberal bot @LaborDirt who does nothing but continually link to MSM articles bagging Labor, nothing else, just a continuous stream of MSM articles.

    Without these mostly deceitful MSM articles the Liberal trolls would be totally lost as they would have to refer to facts, but the trouble for these trolls is that unlike the MSM who strictly control feedback and interaction, if they allow any at all, social media is open and they can be countered with facts. By the way, LaborDirt gets around this by continuously posting a stream of MSM links and not engaging anyone. This tells you two things, LaborDirt is a mindless bot and there is a lot of MSM, a real lot, out there attacking Labor and the government.

    So even though social media is making inroads and it does give those who a currently voiceless in the mainstream a voice, it is still the MSM setting the agenda in politics. It’s why they continue on even though almost all are losing audience and many are making significant and increasing losses. There aim is to give the propaganda message to the mindless Liberal zombie trolls to spread, and dutifully the gormless followers do exactly that. It’s why Rhinehart continues with the extremely low rating Bolt Report and Ltd News give away hundreds of thousands of copies of their broadsheets each day and it’s why the owners of radio stations allow shock jocks to continue well after they should have been sacked for their breaking of a station’s code of practice and ethical standards.

    This all tells you that the reward for the MSM of having an Abbott government in power must be great indeed and it tells you that freedom of speech is what is going to be lost with Abbott in power.

    It’s why Abbott must not be in power.

  6. Its amazing that it seems that Sky news have a camera crew on standby at Abbott’s disposal to use for his stunts,I’m worried that these MSM are running the politics of this country on behalf of the Liberal party

  7. Its disgusting what these Liberal trolls are doing to Julia Gillards fan page,its just pure hate and filth from the uneducated,why is it we never hear of these trolls on MSM and their well organized groups working on behalf of Abbott and the LNP.

  8. The social media is definitely biting and it’s hurting the fogeys of the MSM. In its attempt to neutralize the vast majority of social media who presents the reality of the political situation the MSM habitually reports distortions, lies and tales of fabrication to jack up the status of Coalition members so that we must regard them with heartfelt deference.


    In today’s Telegraph there’s a fairytale titled First Lady-in-waiting
    Within 48 hours of Gillard announcing the date for the election we have the Abbott’s in the Lodge and will Margie keep her day job at the childcare centre?

    Samantha Maiden continued with her excessive gushiness but I’m so disappointed she failed to mention if Margie will replace the carpets and curtains, and will she change the colour scheme, and which sacrificial wines will Tony order to restock the cellar.

  9. Great post.
    I get so frustrated listening to and watching the tripe and drivel that is dished up now on the TV and in the papers. The political bent of the news pundits is blatant. Even the ABC and the Age/SMH have gone to hell and can’t be trusted. Independent online publishers/bloggers are the only real and credible sources of news and in-depth investigation. The old guard in their ivory towers would be wise to acknowledge that their monopoly on information is smashed. Maybe then we will see a renewed commitment to real and honourable journalism.

  10. Mobius @6.48am I wonder why it is that Tony Abbott banned his people from the social media..

    LIBERAL Party candidates have been gagged ahead of next year’s federal election, with Coalition backbench MPs under pressure to close their Twitter and other social media accounts.

    Perhaps the answer is that Tony wants it to not be about Team Abbott, but to keep it as a one on one spar. The Libs have created the JuLiar theme (Tony versus Julia) and so do not want any of their own people as a distraction from this.

  11. Rosellajam, being somewhat optimistic at the time, I thought that given that the country is more or less equally divided between Labor and LNP that via their bias, that the MSM would lose a good portion of their readership. After all, as many Lefties have observed, why bother reading the MSM if all that you get is rehashed of Liberal Party Press Releases. And of course this has indeed happened, and as a result more and more have turned to the social media in order to obtain alternative opinions. And what has the MSM done about it? Ans: absolutely nothing. I would therefore suspect that there is mega money to be made and it’s all going to the likes of Murdoch, Gina and Twiggy if the country’s newspapers can be run into the ground in order to install Tony Abbott as PM.

  12. The most important thing is why the Gillard minority government is doing nothing in regards to the false information that the media is publishing?????

  13. Like what you say Miglo, but where can the Labor Party go. I am sure the PM and her advisers are beside themselves with the Bias of the MSM. I can only hope that clear thinking people see through the LNP and their grubby tactics, but when we have people like Alan Jones spewing hatred daily there is little chance of this happening. Don’t get me wrongI am a very positive person and with the help of “Cafe Whispers” and Independent Australia maybe we can make inroads.

  14. ‘Their reach is enormous. Is it possible that collectively they now have a bigger audience than the MSM?’

    Probably not yet.

    Assuming hate media kills the government at the next election the rusted on leftards may gravitate to places like this in larger numbers.

    Directing their anger at Tabot and Nooze… we wuz robbed…. we wuz robbed.

  15. Crowey, you can issue press release after press release but how to get your message across when the MSM’s tactics are:

    Either not publish the press release at all or publish it as a small footnote on page 13 – interview only Libs to get their opinion on government initiatives – or when government members are interviewed, deal with them in either an aggressive or condescending manner eg plenty or eye-rolling and talk over the top of them at each and every opportunity.

  16. The biggest shift in the attitude of the MSM, came after the Government announced the NBN.

    It is obvious that after the meltdown of the media and the LNP over the NBN, the majority of people want it, as the internet leads the rebellion against the MSM.

    The massive threat to our way of life and democracy posed by the lies and misinformation spread by the LNP Lies Regurgitation Society (LLRS) known as the MSM, can only be held at bay and brought to account by the rise and rise of the fighting fifth.

    The irony is that if they (the MSM moguls) had embraced the internet and updated their business models, they could have avoided the current scenario where they are becoming more and more irrelevant and the instruments of their own ultimate demise. 😯 😀 Which is no more than the scum deserve.

    The sad thing is that despite some great journalists ( who are becoming an endangered species) the credibility of the profession in general is now on a par with bankers, insurance companies and used car and snake-oil (LNP Pollies) salesmen. :mrgreen:

    Cheers 😀

  17. You have hit upon a thought of mine Truth Seeker re the NBN, because I think that’s the prize for the MSM if Abbott wins, and it will be a huge and lucrative prize for them.

    I have no doubt after their phoney audit commission done by Costello they will recommend selling off the NBN and it will be sold for a song to News Corp and a conglomerate of other wealthy players.

    Then bring in what is being proposed in the US where only those who can afford it get premium content and services and the rest are left to fight over dwindling second rate internet services and communications. Dumb down the population by cutting education to them and there you have the recipe for big business and conservative party dogma paradise.

    Cheap under educated labour who believe what they are told as they have little other means of verifying it even if they wanted to. Huge profits and wealth for an even smaller handful of privileged and long term big business controlled Liberal governments by propaganda not by merit.

  18. Mobius, that would most definitely fit in nicely with the Howard/Abbott vision of only the worthy wealthy having access to first class anything..schooling, health and the NBN.

  19. Social media’s excellent coverage of auspol (and its sub-par coverage by traditional media sources) needs to get out there more. We need to post to key hashtags, create our own, retweet and engage online wherever we can have a +ve influence.

    As for the tweetbots and trolls, we need to call them out and put pressure on Twitter to block the worst of them. @LaborDirt (what a misnomer) is top of my list. I’m sick of reporting it. It definitely breaches the terms of service.Tweeted yesterday:

    @LaborDirt spamming #auspol 0ne tweet/min Take back our twitter tag from automatons retweeting old news and opinions. Report for spam.

    You can find it here and think about retweeting or writing our own.

  20. I should add, and we have pay-to-view television as a leading example of what is likely to happen under a Liberal government. I had Sky News while living at Billinudgel mostly due to the fact that I could get reception for only 2 free to view channels. It started off with No Adverts (after all you were paying a subscription fee in lieu of), a good portion of the best shows all part of the basic subscription..and now it is $$$s for basically junk viewing…Toddlers & Tiaras anyone?

  21. Ah no, el trollo, the “we woz robbed” tactic is one most frewuently used by tea-baggers & ignorant lib-tards such as yourself. We’ve had to put up with your pathetic whinging & ranting ever since this current government was formed. Its all the pathetic “born to rule” yutzes like you ever seem to have in their arsenal!

  22. Today we appear to have a change in ABC reporting. Yes they are still saying Labor is in chaos etc. But they are also pointing out that the government is also governing, getting legislation through.

    We had an Insiders, which for once was a little more balanced. an expert on polls spoke sense.

  23. We need it to bite HARDER. I think it is time to subscribe directly to your favourite journalists. Promote their work. Work with them on the questions we know they have the guts to ask and spread their findings around your network.

    You know who they are and they can now have their own platform. Bypass the sick and dying tabloids. Support good journalism directly.

    We can meet back here. Cheers.

  24. Beautiful writing, Migs, so clear.

    I’m not sure that we lefty New Media folk have a bigger audience – yet. But I can say this. The contempt among the new media voices for the Old Media is palpable. I watched Twitter for a while yesterday. The whole time, the condemnation of the OM didn’t stop. And that wasn’t a unique day; it’s like that every time I look in.

    They’ve lost the respect (and acquired the contempt) of a significant proportion of the population. They’re not doing anything to reverse the trend, in fact they’re accelerating it. So it’s just a matter of time till the balance shifts. Whether the OM pricks get to foist the gormless Abbott on us in that time remains to be seen. Either way, things are not as they were, and they are losing – actually throwing away – their advantage.

  25. Rob, excellent advice and followed through by many on this blog via Facebook groups. I personally gave up trying to have anything published on a MSM blog, no dissenting opinions permitted by the likes of Andrew Bolt.

  26. “‘Their reach is enormous. Is it possible that collectively they now have a bigger audience than the MSM?’

    Probably not yet.

    Assuming hate media kills the government at the next election the rusted on leftards may gravitate to places like this in larger numbers.

    Directing their anger at Tabot and Nooze… we wuz robbed…. we wuz robbed.”

    Love your work el gordo, couldn’t have said it better myself!

  27. Cu, hopefully logic will prevail and that people will realise the utter stupidity of statements such as “a dysfunctional government” given the numerous pieces of legislation passed by Parliament, including the price on carbon.

  28. One wonders why bothers to keep him [Bolt] on…

    They need him (and the many OM Liberal spruikers) to prop up the disabled coalition.

  29. LOL, Trollman, neither you or el trollo can say *anything* remotely intelligent, insightful or interesting-which is probably why you two, along with your mates Tweed & Voyager, engage in this pathetic “Circle Jerk” nonsense (or, for the more crude amongst you-mutual masterbation society 😉 )

  30. el gordo, I object to your assertions that those on this side of the fence would be in the game of we were robbed. It might surprise some to know there are people who respect the democracy they live in, and respect the voice of the voters.

    It is those from the right, that believe they were born to rule, and can never accept the judgement of the voters.

    el gordo, we are well aware that we will have another chance in three years time.

    Saying that, we will also fight to the time the last vote is casted. We will also continue to point out the role of media, their lies and misrepresentations.

    We have an Opposition, that are still squealing about a duly elected, according to the constitution is illegal. Claiming they were robbed. This in spite of Labor actually gaining 30.000 more votes than the Coalition. In spite of having the numbers on the floor of the Lower House.

    They go further, the claim they own the votes of the Independents. This in spite of the voters in their electorate not voting for either the Liberals or National party.,

    We have the likes of Brandis, who is supposed be a legal brain, saying that it is a day to day government. All governments are I suspect. What he is missing, it is very stable and no matter what his mob have tried, it appears to be more entrenched than ever. Has achieved everything, which is much during it’s term.

    As for announcing the resignations of the two ministers. Was that a mistake. Who says so.

    I ask, what are we talking about this morning. The normal announcement of resignations for personal reasons, making the Opposition look silly, or the Thomson saga.

    What many do not realise, is that the PM does have the necessary skills to survive.

    Yes a politician needs political skills does not last long without the,.. Remember Hewson. This fact is slowly dawning on Mr. Abbott, that the PM is his equal in this regard.

    Maybe this was not the time of her choosing, but she has diverted the attention away of a harder issue to deal with. At the same time, the PM has manage to turn the focus to Mr., Abbott’s claim he will be keeping his shadow front bench, full of deadwood into the future.

    An action of Abbott, which I heard last night describe him running a protection racket for the dead beats in his party.

    As the day goes on, the media is now spending much time, discussing the shadow front bench.

    Yes, a struggling PM indeed.

  31. The PM began today with the fight against carbon emissions and onto the NBN. Did not sound or act like a PM on the back foot.

    We had Albanese out,making fun of Abbott’s front bench. How cam one take is seriously, when you have the elderly Bishop and Ruddock, a front and centre.

    Th PM then pointed out that since the GFC, the world has changed, and we will never go back to the economies of that time. One has to deal with the realities of the today.

    Therefore, the answers are not going to be found in the past, way back to the 1950’s when it comes to Abbott

    We need those who see what the future is about, a visions to deal with it..

    One only has to visit their schools today. In the last six years, they have moved from the blackboard to the computer age, Every classroom is fully equipped, even kindergarten.

    If there is an open day,take the time to visit one.

    The kindergarten kids use the equipment every day. It has become essential.

    The PM strongly defined and defended what Labor has achieved.

    I am please to hear more than once today on the ABC, when talking about the political noise at the moment and what they expect to hear this week within the house. The are saying the Opposition will be on the attack. They are adding, at the same time, the government,as it has done up to now, will be busy with leglisation.

    That is a big and very important change.

    Sorry for haviung to edit. Words disappeared on me.

  32. The only people who have been screaming “we wuz robbed” since 2010 are members of the Coalition.

    On ABC 7.30 of 31/1/2013 Christopher Pyne said the following:

    “Well we believe that the Government was elected illegitimately in 2010 because it got the support of country independents who should not have supported a Labor government and I think that they will feel the weight of public opinion in their own electorates on September the 14th.”
    But hang on there. Didn’t Tony Windsor say of Tony Abbott: “He begged for the job and he made the point, not only to me but to others that were in that negotiating period, that he would do anything to get that job, anything to get that job…I will do anything , Tony [Windsor] to get that job. The only thing I wouldn’t do is to sell my arse’.”

    So, if Windsor gave his backing to the Coalition to form a government then it was not an illegitimate government for this only applies to Labor? What a distorted sense of logic Pyne has.

    Also from Pyne on 7.30:

    We think the Prime Minister should have gone to an election straight after the 2010 election and given the people an opportunity to reject a hung parliament but that didn’t happen.

    And what if the second election resulted in a hung parliament should there then be another election, and then another, and another, until the Coalition won?

    Proof that the Coalition thinks it is born to rule.

  33. I hope they allow him on every day.

    A government that is unravelling. Now condemning the Laptops in schools. It is wotking as legislation. It is running out in July, as planned. It was always a limited programme. Maybe that school payments govern twice a year, takes it’s place.

    Is being questioned on the shadow front bench.

    They are the only adults in the room. I suspect, Pyne is incapable of seeing the elephant.

    In fact being really questioned.

    It was an editor error, that he said he wanted to be speaker of the house.

    Albanese is quick with a reply.

  34. Migs, well done, you are a tide-turner 😀
    I am but an ordinary Aussie, not that well edumacated and at times very blonde 😉 , though I have always kept an eye on politics in this country, I have never been a rusted on,… left leaning, but never rusted on…. I have mostly voted for independents over my ‘voting life’. For a long time I was disgruntled by the standard of reporting here in Australia, the bias, the spin and the out n’ out lies told by the MSM, so much so that I have given up buying newspapers and barely watch the News on TV….. the blatant bias only makes me angry….. 12 mths ago I started searching for alternatives and ended up finding the Cafe…… ahh, what a breath of fresh air,.. the rise of the 5th estate is about the search for ‘Truth’, imo….. and there are many ordinary Australians, just like me, that are searching…… and finding that elusive thing here and elsewhere on the 5th estate…… if anything I have become a rusted-on Whisperer 😀 😆 the revolution has begun Viva the Cafe!!!!!!!!!!!!

  35. Whyning Pyne:

    We think the Prime Minister should have gone to an election straight after the 2010 election and given the people an opportunity to reject a hung parliament

    What a whining twerp. The verdict of the people WAS the hung parliament! What did he want, for the people to immediately turn around their verdict?

    Where’s the respect?

    That would be like going to a restaurant and giving your order to the waiter. When the waiter brings you your meal he says, “Now, would you like to change your order?”

    Sour grapes from the born to rule bogans.

    CARTOON by @GeorgeBludger

  36. In fact, in reality, ridiculing what he has said. Pointing out that Pyne is getting a head of himself.

    The Opposition has problems, if this keeps up.

    Of course, we can expect this presenter to be cautioned as Faine has been.

    Not sure what her name is. Is good.

  37. Her name is Melissa Clarke . ABC 24 are today, doing there job. I would watch while it lasts. I am sure they will be pulled quickly into line.

  38. Miglo,
    Comrades of the Fighting 5th don’t have to have as many readers or anything like as many, we are much more aware & influential per capita than Joe’n’Josie Lunchbox* in our everyday lives. And we only need to turn 1-2% of waverers our way, if we have not done so already.

    We will fight for them in the schools and hospitals. We will fight for them on the oil rigs and in the Aboriginal communties. We will fight for them in the factories and the cafes. And we will succeed.

    We will pool our information by communicating it through the social media, we will help the Government whenever and however we can, we will DEMAND investigation into Ashbygate, and the longer it takes for our demands to be met the stronger will get. Independent Australia’s David Donovan, and Mad Wixxy Peter Wicks are doing great investigatory work as you know, and there is so much stink of skulduggery here as cannot be buried nor denied. Criminal stuff, real crooked on a national scale, an attempt at the biggest crime ever in Australia, a mighty crime, of intrigue and espionage – Peter Slipper’s diary ! … conspiracy to commit crimes … , vexatious attempts to pervert legal process … and so on! … all aimed at bringing down the egitimate Government.

    I wonder under what pressure this whole filthy episode has put most especially Nicola Roxon, not to mention many other Government Members. [Spare a thought for poor Craig Thomson, a man outrageously wronged in my firm belief.] These Abborttians have made much of Nicola’s life so unpleasant that, having achieved plain packaging of Tobacco, she has been moved to leave Parliament, having received a lot of hate-laden opposition from Big Tobacco. A loss to the People, thanks (not!) to the Abborttians, but Thanks for real to you Nicola Roxon, may you find the peace and sanity you need for your child/ren and life.

    Migs I have never doubted that Labor (well the Government including IndependAnts if necessary) would win this coming election. Though I have never made a real bet before in a longish life, I have put (for little me) serious money on Labor, I keep gloating I got SEVENS in August on Sportsbet and tried and tried to get friends to do likewise, one taker grabbed the chance, no-one else, but someone said they got TWENTIES earlier than I, and I turned green, with envy that is. Twenties, well done that person! But Sevens’ll do me, now it’s around $3, but that’s still great odds. Because Yes we will win.

    Miglo you know I only usually write on Ad astra’s blog The Political Sword, and Twitter now thanks to our TweetieBird Lyn @lynlinking- who returns to TPS on Monday, when Ad will also publish a new thread – first for the year. WOO~HOO! It’s ON! And I’ll repost this what I’m writing now there as well.

    But I thought after all this time I should write you a decent note to express my respect for your site too. And to say, well our numbers and clout aren’t as great as the MSM but we are cleverer and nobler than they, and we are very well-informed compared to what they are used to writing their pap for, and we are very determined. But it will take all our work to make my confident prediction come true, just talk us up and keep on doing what you’re doing, you can’t do more but it will be enough, have I ever lied to you? 🙂

    Note: If you read the thread I linked to on TPS, it tells you of Ad’s new secret weapon, to make it easy to email selected target groups e.g. journos & pollies & unions. I still haven’t come to grips with it, Turkey of small brain that I am, I will try anew though when his new thread’s up. I know it’s powerful, a bit as New Guinea Highlanders in 1943 seeing an aeroplane for the first time know it’s powerful, even if not understanding how it works!

    *I have just found out that the Lunchboxes are now on Twitter.


  39. The fact that Pyne popped up, out of nowhere on a Sunday, tells us much. Wonder who will be on next. Maybe Morrison.

  40. Cuppa. Bolt is kept on because Gina pulled rank and demanded it. The fact that it is coming back so late, says it was dumped. One would have expected to see it today.,

  41. Social media has returned power back to the people in a big way, I often wanted to write to the paper but it meant writing the letter, finding a stamp, posting same too much trouble, so I did not pursue them. Now technology is here to assist and the blogs opened up a new opportunity. Wait until the NBN is countrywide what extra options that will bring to us all, rupes & co hate it and will do everything to block/scrap/or buy it as it will be the final nail in their coffins and can not happen quick enough. long live social media.

  42. You all collectively need to look inwards and not outwards for a moment.
    The Answer friends is fix your internal problems and their is strong probability
    everything else will look after itself.
    The internal catastrophics of the ALP are all self inflicted.
    Weekend Australian and SMH headlines say it all.
    – Obeids stand to make a $1.0B thru Labor corruption
    -Sheldon blasts Labor performance.
    There is too much Labor self-perpetuating muck in all realms for the blame to be pushed onto Media outlets.
    Labor has to do a massive cleanout and reunite with true Labor values or
    face oblivion. It is definitely no longer the ‘working mans party’
    Lets watch the preselection process for Nicola Roxons Seat as an example.

  43. voyager, open your eyes. Do you really believe we are blind to the problems within Labor. Do you really believe the matters are not being addressed.

    There was a very hard speech this weekend, pointing out in strong words what has to be done. There are new rules being introduced in Labor, in NSW, this very weekend.

    Labor is not the only party to have corruption within it’s ranks. Is not the first, will not be the last.

    The number of people involved are very small.

    Those who have offended are being dealt with by the law.

    Yes, It has come at an as bad time. Then whenever is it a good time.

    There are good and bad in all political parties, world wide.

  44. Min

    You can get comments on the Punch, who even include links sometimes if shortened.

    We shouldn’t ignore the print media. Letters to the Editor still get published and read, if your’e not criticising them. The dedicated can even try talkback or tweets to TV programs.

  45. Political parties who misuse the judicial system to achieve their political objectives are in a poor position to cast judgment on other political parties. So too, political parties that appoint members of the “old boys network”, or their family members to well paid jobs-whilst sacking loyal, long term employees (as we’ve seen recently in Queensland). Yes, Labor has many problems it needs to deal with, but that doesn’t blind us to the filth & corruption, within the Fiberal Party, that is considered Business as Usual.

  46. You are kidding yourselves if you believe social media has any influence on the polls. Same goes for the evil MSM having influence.

    The people that will decide who governs after the next election will be the swinging voters, Mr and Mrs Lunchbox, that make their decisions mostly based on their hip pockets.

    The rusted ons from both the left and right are powerless as they just make up the numbers.

  47. Trench mouth Pyne never stops. On the SMH website now I find this:

    “This government is starting to resemble a scene from Downfall,” Mr Pyne told reporters in Adelaide, referring to the 2004 film that depicts the final days of Hitler’s reign.”

  48. Kevin, you are correct. We need to remember, the old fashion email is still effective. Especially when it starts clogging up their mailboxes.

    Also on media sites, especially the ABC, every program site has a box where one can make complaints. That is the one really need to use.

  49. ah, & here comes scaper to argue that black is white. Show us your *evidence* that social media hasn’t had any influence. All the polling over the last 6 months says something completely different. Still, I wouldn’t expect anything better from scaper, who never lets a little thing like *facts* get in the way of a good story. I still don’t know why these Right Whingers bother coming here, given they have nothing remotely interesting to say!

  50. scaper, we will see. We have no option, but to try.

    What I so believe, the trolls are losing their influence.

    We are quickly learning how to deal with them.

    Cory Bernadi and Menzies House appear not to support your view, with their use of astroturfing.

    Seem to work OK for the USA President.

  51. scaper, we only have to change the minds of a small percentage, to bring change, Even in massive wins, there is only a small percentage difference between the winner and the loser.

    If we influence enough in the seats with small margins, the number is even smaller.

  52. I wonder if Pyne will have much to say when he has to tell Parliament what his involvement was in the Ashby/Slipper affair?

  53. scaper. we do not have to influence the so called rusted on. That what makes me wonder why trolls waste their time on sites like this.

  54. scaper, it is also a good place for people of similar interests to gather and plan other action, such as sending emails or formulation petitions, among many other things.

    Just a modern way of building a protest movement. One needs to have lateral thinking to be successful. That and building of networking, which is highly successful.

    If we do not succeeds, we will then gather again, to work towards success at the following election.

    I believe we are here for the long term.


  55. “This government is starting to resemble a scene from Downfall,” Mr Pyne told reporters in Adelaide, referring to the 2004 film that depicts the final days of Hitler’s reign.”

    Charming lot, these Fiberals.

    Sydney Morning Herald, 09 December 2011:

    The O’Farrell government’s whip in the upper house has become a minor sensation on Twitter this afternoon, attacking other users, telling one to “go fuck yourself” and declaring himself the “Marieke Hardy” of the Right.–on-twitter-20111209-1on9x.html

    And the charm doesn’t end there.

    Their ABC, 07 August 2008:

    Federal Opposition’s environment spokesman Greg Hunt has compared Water Minister Penny Wong to Saddam Hussein, saying she and the Federal Government have condemned South Australia’s Lower Lakes region to death.

  56. Great post Miglo

    A case in point msm v social media is the staged arrest of Thomson during the question section of Abbott at the NPC.

    Soon after a tweet about one of the charges Thomson was arrested for was buying an icecream Peter Wicks, Wixxyleaks, David Donovan Independent Australia got out investigated and posted what i would refer to as the real news in the story.

    The msm were sucked in by the drama of the arrest, but not one outlet had any questions about the timing, circumstances or police process.

    But here are some of the facts and questions social media provided.
    7 police, 5 NSW and 2 Vic police were sent to arrest Thomson, whereas Williamson was arrested by appointment. Why the different process both relate to HSU.

    Thomson was refused bail by the police. Williamson was not.

    Because bail was refused Thomson had to be processed by Protective Services Officers, that is the strip search.
    The PSO revealed that the timing of the refusal for bail was such that Thomson would have spent the night in gaol. Instead the PSOs worked their own time so that Thomson could front a magistrate who immediately granted bail.

    The bail requirements stated and released to media said Thomson was not to contact any prostitutes he may have paid. Why so descriptive/specific/colourful why not state any witnesses etc.

    So the msm gave us hoopla, social media stepped in and asked the questions that are necessary for a healthy democracy.

    (And the 2 sites I mentioned are just 2 of many but a good example)

  57. Addressing the media in Adelaide today, Christopher Pyne said this:

    The prime minister has serious questions to answer about how she intends to govern for the next seven months with what is clearly an unravelling government. The prime minister needs to confirm whether by-elections will be held in normal courses of events, say, within 2-3 months of a resignation and not held off until September in order to keep the prime minister’s tenuous hold on power in place. We know we’ve had the resignations of Nicola Roxon and Chris Evans. We know that Peter Slipper and Craig Thomson are under a legal cloud. Robert McLelland has announced his retirement and he will be applying for a job which could take him out of the parliament. There are rumours of other Labor MPs and front benchers to follow and the prime minister is leaving very vague whether she will pursue the normal course of events which is by-elections within one, two or at most three months of resignation or whether she will hold those off until September 14 election date. That’s not good enough for the Australian public. This government is starting to resemble a scene from Downfall and the prime minister is presiding over a divided and dysfunctional government.

    The Coalition on the other hand has a plan for a safe, secure Australia and a strong and prosperous Australia. We want the government to get its act together because if this wasn’t so serious it would be funny. The public deserve a lot better.

    In my electorate people tell me they can’t pay their electricity bills. They’re struggling with their mortgages. They’re worried about their children’s futures. They’re worried about their job security and their worried the government is not protecting our borders and yet this government appears to be unravelling on a daily basis. If this is what it’s like after 3 days of an election campaign what would another three years of another Labor government do?

    I think Pyne is prone to hyperbole sometimes.

  58. scaper, where did I say we set out to influence visitors to the site,

    I am not so sure you are correct anyway. We do link up with many other social networks. It is apparent you have not noticed.

    I know this is effective, because I have has responses from people on facebook, on what I have posted. In fact some surprised me, as they were very young. Yes, they were interested.

    It is the networking that counts. Just like it did, in pre computer days.

  59. Scaper, surely it is in the interests of good democratic governance that alternative opinions be voiced. Perhaps that’s it, while we had Tim and Matty as strong voices in the MSM then the alternative media was of interest, but not all that important…

  60. PS. The new AG has demanded Pyne withdraw and apologise for his comments he made today, that are highly offensive to the Jewish community.

    scaper, how quickly do you think this one is going to take, to go feral on tweeter and facebook.

  61. Scaper is correct, the swinging voters wouldn’t spend time here or at the Bolter.

    My argument is simple, if you want power and influence on the blogosphere then its important to disguise your affiliation with either side.

    Jo Nova is a science blog which attracts large numbers, but clearly she leans to the right because of a single issue. Not that there is anything wrong with that.

    The Cafe cannot hope to emulate this influence on the 5th Estate unless they get rid of the ‘left wing and proud’ banner. Preaching to the converted over the next decade, with Tabot’s mob in power, is simply a no brainer.

  62. el gordo, no one said that.

    I wish you people would read and take into consideration, everything that is written, instead of cherry picking the bits you like.

    It is tedious having to correct you all.

  63. Whying Pyne:

    In my electorate people tell me they can’t pay their electricity bills. They’re struggling with their mortgages. They’re worried about their children’s futures. They’re worried about their job security

    Crocodile tears. What’s the Liberal answer to everything (their only real ‘policy’): WorkChoices. Reducing pay and conditions (towards Gina’s ultimate wish: $2 per day). After a generation living under SerfChoices we would have Third World working conditions and standard of living for the masses in this country. Then people could forget all about luxuries such as mortgages and power bills.

  64. el gordo, I am not ashamed of my views. The PM definitely was not in her speech this morning. She stood up and said she is proud of what she has done.

    Most of what we do here, is to repeat what the Coalition is saying. Very little opinion is given.

  65. Thank goodness for independent media services, because the good old msm ain’t telling no-one nothing. Spin, spin, spin, rhetorical opinion, spin, spin, spin, gossip, spin, spin, spin, make it all up. Hope all their journalism degrees (if indeed any of their reporters have one) curl up and blow away to dust.

    Agree with a comment made asking just what the msm are going to get from an LNP government, possibly ability to mine the entire length and breadth of the country. An LNP government headed up by TA will be so 1950’s, and gee we’ve already got a reincarnation of BA Santamaria on TV – Andrew Bolt!

    Keep up the great work here, it is vital.

  66. El gordo, what absolute rubbish. Why should anyone disguise their opinion in order to placate an imaginary “swinging voter”. We of course have Shane here, who is a dinky-di swinging voter. Having read Shane’s opinion for some time, you should know that what the swinging voter wants is the truth, factual information so that they can make up their own mind rather than “facts” twisted and warped by the MSM so as to manipulate opinion.

  67. He also complained about the the laptops to school kids, which as planned, runs out in July.

    Remeber the one they were so much against. May be that the school assistance is suppose to help.

    Another thing is, that today most kids have ipads, laptops and smart phones, etc. that was not the case, when the scheme was introduced.

    The scheme was also about much more that supplying laptops. It was about computerising the class room as well, b ringing them into the modern era. That has occurred.

    Much of Labor;s spending has had end dates. Are not designed to extend unabated into the future.

    One would have problems, in today’s situation, supporting such a scheme, because of the access that children now have to computers.

    Most of Labor’s spending, is strictly targetted.

  68. Cu,
    “higgs, the decision in when and if a by-election is called has nothing to do with the PM.”

    You know that, I know that, but for Pyne (Manager of Opposition Business in the House of Reps) not to know that is unforgivable.

  69. El gordo and,

    My argument is simple, if you want power and influence on the blogosphere…

    and this is where you fail. You do not understand that it’s not all about power and influence, but all about informed choices.

  70. Higgs, or more than likely Pyne using misinformation in order to destabilise. We’ve seen this over and over, the lies and misinformation..a scare campaign dressed up as fact.

  71. Nell Santamaria and Baume made much more sense.
    Not that one agreed with what they had to say. They did get me in for a while, but then I grew up.

  72. scaper, there is one thing we are doing. We are giving the rusted on, as you call them,information and arguments to use in their own community and life.

  73. What we need is an idependent body overseeing the Media to keep the bastards honest. What we need is the % of media ownership to be looked at…… What we need is balanced reporting….. What we need is the ALP and the present PM…… what we don’t need is the LNP Rupert/Gina PMship puppet Tony Abbortt selling us out for their short term gain.

  74. Min, I also believe we are not telling people how or who to vote for. We are telling them to question what they read. Big difference.

  75. Go @%! yourself: O’Farrell’s whip lashes out on Twitter

    Warning: graphic language
    The O’Farrell government’s whip in the upper house has become a minor sensation on Twitter this afternoon, attacking other users, telling one to “go fuck yourself” and declaring himself the “Marieke Hardy” of the Right.
    I have a feeling this may not be a very good idea, but my GenY staffer tells me that it is essential to have Twitter. Hmmm…

    Peter Phelps, a member of the hard right of the NSW Liberal Party, who notably once described traffic lights as a “Bolshevist menace”, joined the social networking site less than a month ago with some trepidation.

    Read more:–on-twitter-20111209-1on9x.html#ixzz2JoTVhWtB

  76. My god el gordo gets it totally wrong (yet again) and proves they don’t really understand at all.

    Here’s a thought. How about you el gordo go setup a blog that “disguises” your rabid right wing support and power and influence.

    There aren’t enough good comedic sites around so a disguised blog of power and influence of your making should fit the bill.

  77. Revealed: Tony Abbott’s email on election agenda

    Not quite an Abbott bash by The Telegraph but as close as its ever going to get.

    It does prove that Abbott will say and do anything to get elected rather than say and do what’s right for Australia. This also reveals gross projection from the opposition as they say it’s Gillard who says and does anything to get elected, which is a nonsense as everything she says and does is constantly criticised and knocked down by the media.

  78. Mobius, Abbott acknowledge the email was genuine. Cutting the school assistance is what they advise to leave out.

    I have come to the conclusion, Tony believes his own spin. He believes that the school assistance will be seen by the public as an example of Labor’s waste.

    All he will achieve if he continues down this path, promising to dump Labor programmes, is highlight all that Labor have done.

  79. Another great discussion by all here. It’s dead easy to scroll the trolls and get to the real discussion.
    I have the utmost confidence that Social Media is going to take it right up to the MSM for getting the Independent news sites investigations and reportings out to the general public. We need not sell short the fact that there are many, many young people who interact on Twitter and Facebook and we need to engage them with factual information so that they can make an informed decision when it comes to voting. They are pretty savvy these days – don’t like being hoodwinked and lied to.
    Migs, just keep doing the great job you are doing and let us all keep talking and tweeting and facebooking.

  80. Cu and,

    Min, I also believe we are not telling people how or who to vote for. We are telling them to question what they read. Big difference.

    Only that they’re blathering idiots/mindless morons who cannot look further than the blatantly misleading, highly prejudiced press..these of course they read only in between inspecting themselves for jock itch and watching shows consisting mostly of tits, arses, hidden cameras and selective editing.. 😉

  81. Social media are certainly biting #Pyne about his third reich remarks. Has he no knowledge of history. Hasn’t he heard of the other Dreyfus and his religious background? Might watch #QandA for a change tomorrow night, though nothing makes Christopher squirm. Get ready for some tweeting. Wonder if Counterpoint Vanstone will leap to his defence?

  82. On Roxon’s decision to quit politics..I can personally relate to this. If I had stood another term (even though I would have been Mayor), it would have meant that my eldest would have been 17yrs by the time that term ended. I considered that it wasn’t worth it, especially given that I had little other support other than my elderly parents.

  83. higgs boson

    Margot is rather kind to Steve Lewis by inferring he was conned. Then again he was either gullible or involved in the disgraceful Utegate/Grech/Turnbull attempt to bring down the Rudd govt.

    Margot thinks Lewis was just conned and Lewis comforts himself with the Rares “he was doing his job as a journalist”, but why does Lewis choose not to explain why he hasn’t followed up with investigating Brough.
    Lewis claims he has been chasing Slipper for cabcharges since 2010, yet Brough who involves staff to steal, lie and attempt abuse of process is not newsworthy, is so pathetic you wonder if Lewis is suffering from some sort of fixation. Lewis has lost the plot or is chasing his own windmills blind to the bigger story.

  84. Higgs, as per Justice Rares,

    I have reached the firm conclusion that Mr Ashby’s predominant purpose for bringing these proceedings was to pursue a political attack against Mr Slipper and not to vindicate any legal claim he may have for which the right to bring proceedings exists.

  85. Scaper/el gordo,

    Don’t judge the power of social media based on this blog alone. But is leads me to this question: do you know who our readership is anyway?

    Don’t base an opinion on the number of comments or the people who comment as the readership extends far beyond those few.

    Some of the topics on this blog have had over 500 Facebook shares and a couple on The AIMN have had over 1000. Actually, far more people comment on our topics on Facebook than they do on the blog sites.

    So just because you don’t think this blog is a good vehicle to spread the word, keep in mind that those same words are being spread elsewhere.

  86. Miglo, and numerous sites that appear to be growing every day. Many very good sites, that are linking up.

    el gordo does not appear to understand the power of networking. Maybe her business would be better, if she took the time to learn.

    Networking was is a powerful tool.

  87. Migs, not putting shit on this place, just believe that swinging voters are not engaged with the social media.

    Am very active and encourage all to get more involved…if I had my way the left and right would join to demand better representation from their respective sides of politics as the future looks bleak.

    I see that Labor has backed off on their proposed attack on free speech. One of the so called networks saw an end to that and don’t think for one second that if the Libs are in government they won’t cop the same if they cross the line.

    We need to take our country back.

  88. Mobius ecko

    a better headline today, demonstrating the irrelevance of the print media, and it was part of the discussion on insiders.

    Gillard v Rudd the movie, the knifing of kevin rudd.

    Supposedly a tele movie, that has not been cast, scripted or even WRITTEN

  89. WTF

    US TEA PARTY CRAP “we need to take our country back”

    What a pathetic plea,were you part of the Convoy of Inconsequence?

  90. Migs, I refuse there are a host of Liberal supporters who go along with Abbott.

    It is toxic politics and media we are fighting.

    It is not really about left and right.

    Most, I believe, do not go along with belief that the end justifies the means,

    Look at what Mr.Abbott has said about his shadow front bench, Do all those talented MPs that have come in since 2007, willing to sit in the shadows, while the likes of Pyne throws the filth across the chamber each day.

    I suspect there are as many on the other side that are questioning and making decisions as whether the country can afford, Abbott,.

    There must be,be, Australians are better than that,.

    What is true, there is a social movement evolving, just as people took to the streets in the middle of the last century, in there tens of thousand, they are coming together on social media. ,

  91. This from Bob Ellis, …… love the “…., probably May Day.” oh, guffaw… 😀

    “No, no. Not that it matters, but no. What exists at this moment is a twenty-two page document plus four scenes written by me, and a verbal deal with the Initiating Producer, Stuart Quin, that I will co-write with my best friend Stephen Ramsey, co-author with me of The True Believers, The Spycatcher Trials, Hollywood Jackaroo and the forthcoming life-of-Murdoch movie The News Of The World, and a pendant miniseries, perhaps, the full 180-minute first draft with no-one else participating. It is unlikely that it will be on the screen before April, 2014. I have not been fired, or even hired, yet. If it is funded the script will be finished by, probably, May Day.”

  92. CU

    Obviously Abbott doesn’t think ANY talent was elected to his team in 2007, let alone 2010. That’s why he is sticking with his shadow front bench.

    Funny that, rather than upset the front bench he would rather upset the back bench. Or does Abbott just dismiss them cause as he said at the NPC “I’m in charge now”

  93. scaper, that was a discussion paper. In other words, an ambit claim.

    The new AG has already said he is going to enjoy fighting the Opposition, especially when much of what they are opposing, is already establish law.

    All it is, is merging five similar pieces of legislation into one. It is about very little new law.

    I agree with man, that say it is time to dump the exemptions given to the churches,Sadly that is unlikely to happen

    Once again, they are making much ado about nothing.

  94. Lovo
    great link
    i especially liked the bits on
    gerard henderson

    and the bit about todays article in the Tele, the 17 lies…… but what would you expect from a Murdoch hack

  95. Lovo, that is a very old story that is being rehashed, Treated as a joke on Insiders.

    Sue, I have no idea where Abbott is coming from. Nothing they say makes sense,

    The PM was right to name the election date, allowing the media to concentrate on Abbott, Maybe if he is asked a few questions, we might just find out.

    Like some of our visitors, they just seem to say anything, that sounds OK. None of it has substance.

    Like what they are serving up about his promises for the shadow
    front bench, claiming that is stability. What about renewal, and changing as circumstances change.

    Howard and that front bench were thrown out in 2007, because it had become stale and worn out..

    The same reason, most of the state Labor governments have been in recent times. They become too long in the tooth and were past their shelf life.

    Changing government, is what makes democracy strong.

    They become stale, are thrown out. Where they should begin reinvigorating, to be re-elected down the track.

    It is like one cleaning the fridge out, discarding food past the used by date,, and the old man putting it back in the fridge. Makes as much sense.

  96. CU
    “It is like one cleaning the fridge out, discarding food past the used by date,, and the old man putting it back in the fridge’

    or put another way “and the old man putting it back in the fridge all the time muttering I’M TAKING BACK THE FRIDGE”

  97. that was a discussion paper. In other words, an ambit claim.

    Yes and No. Yes it was designed to generate ‘discussion’. To claim it was an ‘ambit’ misses the point. Technically speaking, the document in question was an ‘exposure draft’:

    Proposed version of a document or statement issued for open discussion prior to its release as a final document or pronouncement.”

    Read more:

    Of course scaper knows that. After all he had ambitions to be a ‘political lobbyist’.

    That is, until he ‘cut and ran’ to WA. Just further evidence of delusion. So sad.

    As fot the ‘much ado about nothing’ here’s a link that reinforces your point:

  98. Col, I did not read the article, they were my words. I listened to Dreyfus’ comments this morning.

    I know that saying ambit claim was pushing it. Just thought I would see if I could be clever, just like Pyne.

    I will go and read it now. Might learn something, as I have not been following it that closely.

  99. Clearly (following the logic advanced by some here) the nine Noalition members who’ve decided not to contest the next election are ‘rats deserting a sinking ship’.

    Really, can’t we rise above ‘slogans’ and other shallow analysis?

    Hopefully with the next election months away, we might see the rise of ‘fact checking’ blogs.

  100. “The new AG has already said he is going to enjoy fighting the Opposition, especially when much of what they are opposing, is already establish law.”

    Ha Ha Ha… The old hypocrite got off to a good start! It’s OK for Drefus to channel Goebbels…
    But not ok for Pyne describe this government as resembling a scene from Downfall…

    Ha Ha Ha

  101. There is a major and very important difference in your comparison treeman.

    Dreyfus actually defined the tactics the liberals were using which was, quite accurately, the ‘Goebbellian’ tactic of calling reb black long and loud enough to make it so.

    pyne actually compared Labor to the Nazis, with no real evidence of anything except he thought they did.

    A pretty big difference.

  102. As per my previous post – the vagabonds are alredy lining up for Roxons seat.
    Will it be the very fashionable recycling or stick to the reliable Union Hack or
    just the not so reliable old ALP Staffer. Or maybe a ‘Captains Pick’ who knows.
    And really who cares the way they carry on! Members dont get their say.
    Until Labor finds out what a Blood Transfusion means there is no hope.

  103. And here is Voyager…the secret weapon and most important factor in the LOTO’s bag’o’tricks!
    And let’s be fair…Voyager is a big wheel in the Liberal Party…he must be, he is so full of insider info, but he is just shy. So if or when Tabbott gets the nod, he’ll be there at the gathering..jumping up and down on his tippy toes…”Tones! Tones!..I voted for you!”..and of course, he’ll get an ice cream cone like all the rest…then he’ll find he has to go back to his boring life…his boring occupation and lose some of his low-income support, lose some of his superannuation….if he has young kids(IF he’s really their father!)..he’ll lose his school allowance…but hey! that’s alright, he’s done his part..There’s Tony..all botox-bright and shiny…..and….he’s got an ice-cream out of it all…..Voyager is a WINNER!
    Pity about the reality….

  104. Treeman…why don’t you go have a quiet chat in a quiet room with chrissy…I’m sure he’d like that…and he could “fill you in” on all the goss!….and I’m sure YOU’D like THAT!

  105. JAYCEE – obviously you know the ropes .
    What happens in Gingerbreadland (ms Roxons municipality)?
    Who gets the nod at pre-selection.
    1 Recycled
    2 Union hack
    3 Inside job
    4 Captains Pick
    5 Outsider
    Ive intentionally kept it simple for you.
    You only need to answer by number against you preferred option.

  106. Maybe if he is asked a few questions, we might just find out.

    I doubt that, CU. I hear he’s taken to wearing running shoes at interviews to facilitate his escape.

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