Australian politics took a truly bizarre turn this week when the Murdoch-owned tabloid The Courier-Mail decided to out right-wing shock jock (and friend of Murdoch) as a rabid greenie. This is the equivalent of Rush Limbaugh being called an environmentalist. The article is so surreal it’s one of those moments that make you feels like parody is no longer possible.
Alan Jones addressing a rally
They start off on fairly solid ground, calling out Jones’ “trademark nastiness and unique mix of abuse and vitriol” but then gets straight into the weird by saying Queenslanders would be confused and shocked. Yeah, like Queenslanders are so fucking nice. I don’t say that as an insult – the idea that Queenslanders are such shrinking violets that they would be scared by some lunatics saying mean things on the radio is fucking ridiculous.
Then we get straight into the serious insults: the paper says “his progressive lifestyle and inner-city views have resulted in him becoming the pin-up boy” – see if you can spot the three phrases that are none to subtle code for “HE’S A FUCKING BENDER!” I don’t know if Jones has ever officially come out as gay but it’s not exactly a secret.
A lot of people have rightly pointed out that sort of lifestyle shaming is cheap and nasty. Like pretty much the majority of what’s printed in the Courier Mail. So why has arch-conservative Jones earned the ire of an arch-conservative Murdoch tabloid? He dared to speak out against fracking and advocate for farmers who believe it is damaging their farming land. And in Queensland, apparently being anything less than 100% committed to any and all mining makes you a filthy environmentalist.
I should actually get AIDzee to do a rant on Jones’ opposition to fracking because he has pretty strong opinions about it being bullshit. He’s pretty convinced Jones has been paid to do it, not that he has any deep commitment to the farmers involved (an angle I haven’t seen explored in the media). I think he bases this idea on Jones’ track record for saying whatever he’s paid to say and lying about his motivation.
While some people take exception to the way the Courier Mail alluded to Jones’ sexuality as a negative thing, the real insult they level is “green”. No less than three times the article alludes to him having an intimate relationship with The Greens – an idea that’s patently ridiculous. But hey, this is a Murdoch rag – who expects to see the truth there?
Oh, and the article wasn’t actually written by a journalist, it was written by the eastern Australia CEO of the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association. So it’s a fucking sales pamphlet for the people doing the fracking. Even by Murdoch standards, that’s fairly disgusting.
On a lighter note, follow this link to hear Jones in full flight. He doesn’t like dust.