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Last updated on March 6th, 2018 at 12:31 am
Chris Masters defends his loathsome attack on broadcaster Alan Jones:
“I am always sorry for the pain that my work can cause but … that is one of the roles of journalism — to air unpalatable truths,” he said.
Masters says Jones, 65, hides his homosexuality in order to retain his much-feared audience power base, which he uses in secrecy to influence ministers, including the Prime Minister.
Now that the rules have changed, and sexual orientation and behaviour have become crucial to our understanding of public figures, perhaps influential Fairfax and ABC journalists will volunteer their own sexual secrets. What are they hiding in order to retain their power base?
UPDATE. David Marr, who selected the extracts from Masters’ book published on the weekend, is quite happy to see Jones outed:
What it is is an explanation for his strange character, his love of secretness.
Homosexuality = “strange character”. More from liberated Dave:
David Flint was absolutely correct the other day. He said, you don’t “out” people unless their sexuality has an impact in public life. And Jones’ does. He is a very important figure in Australia …
Neither Masters nor Marr provide examples of Jones’ sexuality having any impact on public life—aside from him being “strange” and loving “secretness”.
UPDATE II. The SMH’s Dominic Knight:
The debate between David Marr and Andrew Bolt on The Insiders yesterday left me more torn than I would ordinarily expect to be where those two individuals are involved, because it occurred to me that for once, Bolt might have a point.
UPDATE III. Matt Price on formerly respectable Chris Masters:
The (until now) widely respected investigative journalist is deluding himself by arguing salacious revelations about Alan Jones’s sex life are critical in understanding the broadcaster’s power and influence. Which, incidentally, is routinely overstated.
- hides his homosexuality in order to retain his much-feared audience power base
Well it ain’t hidden any more is it?
— NoraPosted by The Thin Man Returns on 2006 10 23 at 01:19 AM • permalink
- For way too long Masters has been hiding his wrestling acrivities in order to maintain his much feared audience power base.Posted by Margos Maid on 2006 10 23 at 01:19 AM • permalink
- Clearly he has no unpalatable truths to hide, so I’m sure Chris Masters wouldn’t mind an IT expert checking his computers for his browser viewing history, msn conversations or secret hotmail accounts, etc. Obviously there’s nothing incriminating, but – you know – it’d be a nice gesture and would inspire confidence.
- Don’t you get it? Conservatives are homophobic! (why else wouldn’t they want gay marriage). Therefore, the unstated message is: he’s a hypocrite, because he’s a conservative, and also -allegedly- gay.
Masters and Marr really do think it’s relevant, because they have a cartoon caricature of what ‘conservative’ means.Posted by daddy dave on 2006 10 23 at 01:29 AM • permalink
- #5 daddy dave: Masters and Marr do indeed have a cartoon view of the world. They seem to believe that the best way to bring Jones down is to out him to a homophobic, Right-wing radio audience. Because Conservatives are all obviously anti-gay, this will kill his ratings, destroy his political influence, and thus right the balance of power.
I believe such a strategy was first used by these political masterminds.
- Being from the West Coast and thus not residing anywhere near “Jonestown”, I’m not familiar with Alan Jones’s style. If it is true that Jones can get very personal when attacking his opponents, then I suppose his “outing” at the hands of Marr, Masters etc is sauce for the goose.
HOWEVER I am familiar with the rank hypocrisy of these posturing highbrow journalists like Marr who simultaneously whine loud and long about the dirty tactics Jones wields, whilst gleefully utilising those same tactics in an attempt to damage him.
Marr is acting like a nine year old boy who’s just found out that another boy in his grade has a secret girlfriend, and is breathlessly informing anyone who’ll listen.Posted by James Waterton on 2006 10 23 at 01:38 AM • permalink
- Missed the insiders show in which Bolt gave Marr a servere fact check. The Australian had it in its “cut and paste” section and Marr was well and truely flogged.
“So Justice Kirby’s sexuallity is fair game then?”.
All Marr could do was sputter and gibber in response. If anyone has the excerpt from the insiders it would make a great little link (hint hint)Posted by thefrollickingmole on 2006 10 23 at 01:41 AM • permalink
- The most conservative thing about Alan Jones is his sexual predelictions. He’s an agrarian socialist/populist.Posted by Infidel Tiger on 2006 10 23 at 01:45 AM • permalink
- I am always sorry for the pain that my work can cause – Chris Masters.
Gee Chris I understand it’s a pretty turgid read, but to admit your writing style is painful is one hell of a truthful admission.
Now all we have to do is get the other turgid writers (funny how they all work for Fairfax; Mike Carlton, Al Ramsay, Adele Horin, Terry Lane et al), to admit they are turds, I mean turgid….
- hides his homosexuality in order to retain his much-feared audience power base
The stupid thing is that Jones’ sexuality has been well-known for years. If his audience were somehow offended by it, they would have switched off years ago.Posted by ArtVandelay on 2006 10 23 at 01:53 AM • permalink
- I’m not a big fan of Jonesy; way too abrasive and aggressive for my liking and, as Infidel points out, a strange beast politically.
But… I’d love to see absolutely nothing change in his audience ratings. That’d be like the bullets ricochetting off Jones and back up the shooters’ nostrils.Posted by O’Smithovitch on 2006 10 23 at 01:57 AM • permalink
- Looks like sections of the gay community aren’t too impressed with Marr’s behaviour, either.Posted by James Waterton on 2006 10 23 at 01:59 AM • permalink
I watched with great relish (not vegemite, just in case the CIA are monitoring) Bolta wipe the smile off that jackanape’s face. Previously, Marr had been bobbing around like a jack in the box. When Bolta nailed him, Marr knew he’d been hypocritical.
I await calls from the left to investigate Bob Carr’s life. Well, after all, he is even more powerful than Jones, works for a multinational and is the butt of many nudges and winks about his own sexuality.
- #5 Daddy Dave
Masters and Marr really do think it’s relevant, because they have a cartoon caricature of what ‘conservative’ means.
I think they also have a caricture of what being gay means. Jones’ biggest crime to these two (especially Marr) is that he doesn’t lead the airy-fairy mardi gras lifestyle. By having a conservative audience he is a traitor to the homosexual cause.
I’d say Infidel Tiger is closer to the mark – he is an agrarian socialist and a traitor to conservatives. (Jones not Infidel)
Still doesn’t deserve this kind of vitriol though.
I was first told that Jones was a chocolate donut puncher when he was coaching the Wobblies. That’s at least 22 years ago.
Most people, including me, couldn’t care less that he’s gay or not. If he went around demonising gay people, then Marr and Masters might have a point in exposing hypocrisy. But he doesn’t, so Marr and Masters should STFU.
- Stay tuned for my caustic expose on Margo Kingston’s sex life. As I mercilessly undermine her power base by revealing her as an asexual chat room freak.Posted by Infidel Tiger on 2006 10 23 at 02:02 AM • permalink
- Masters and Marr miss the point entirely. Outing Jones to the ABC and Fairfax crowd is preaching to the converted.
Jones’ power and audience base will remain intact because they are not influenced by the biased crap at these outlets that parades as news or ‘in the public interest’. What Masters has done definitely is not in the public interest. It is in the interest of the Left who feel mighty threatened by the power and influence that Jones wields.
In fact, I believe that it’s possible Jones will come out of this attack on him stronger than ever. Sensible, fair-minded people can smell a hatchet job or a smear of this magnitude a mile off. There might be a ‘rally round Al’ factor come into play then the whole Jonestown exercise will have been one massive miscalculation and counter-productive exercise.
There is also a very good chance that Jones will sue for $millions here. His targets are lining themselves up like ducks in a shooting gallery. Masters has destroyed any credibility he ever had and may well come out of this friendless and broke.
- #15, #8 – are you sure it was Insiders? I can’t find the transcript on that site anywhere.Posted by James Waterton on 2006 10 23 at 02:05 AM • permalink
- By the way, as long as they dont make it compulsory homosexuallity is fine by me!Posted by thefrollickingmole on 2006 10 23 at 02:07 AM • permalink
- #23 Fine by me, just not with me.Posted by Infidel Tiger on 2006 10 23 at 02:08 AM • permalink
- #25 – why the hell not? How stupid. Insiders is one of the few ABC forums that is reasonably balanced.Posted by James Waterton on 2006 10 23 at 02:12 AM • permalink
- 22. James Waterton
According to the Australian, that was what it was on. The Australian doesnt seem to have its “cut and paste” online either. Cant find any mention on the insiders website either. I have the dead tree edition of the Australian so I know it may have happened. Wheres wronright and the tardis??Posted by thefrollickingmole on 2006 10 23 at 02:15 AM • permalink
- If only they’d stream it like they do the 7.30 Report and Lateline…Posted by James Waterton on 2006 10 23 at 02:18 AM • permalink
- Transcript of ABC Insiders show on Alan Jones
October 23, 2006
Melbourne’s Herald Sun columnist Andrew Bolt, on the ABC’s Insiders yesterday, takes on the Sydney Morning Herald’s journalist David Marr
HOST Barrie Cassidy: Do you think the Alan Jones book Jonestown will make a splash?
Marr: You have not read it yet of course.
Bolt: I’ll tell you what I have read _ the excerpts that your paper the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age ran from this book (on Saturday). And they all focussed on his sexuality and the fact that he was a teacher in charge of boys. And it went “wink wink, nudge, nudge: teacher, gay, boys”. And I think that is so outrageous. There is nothing to suggest that Alan Jones did anything improper. And if he was not a conservative, but someone of the Left – dare I say that word again…
Marr: Oh dear God…
Bolt: …. you would join me in condemning this rank homophobia. This is disgraceful.
Marr: It’s not homophobia. Read the text. It’s on the record. There were the people who were his pupils. And it is a very careful argument.
Bolt: If this were Justice Michael Kirby, you would be shocked by this. It’s gutless of you not to complain.
Marr: I did the excerpts.
Cassidy: What’s the relevance to his homosexuality?
Marr: Because it’s the very basis of his character and the basis of his career. His problems at those schools projected him out into his career….
Bolt: What problems?
Marr: They are all set out on the book, Andrew.
Bolt: Masters says again and again he does not actually have any proof.
Marr: What it is is an explanation for his strange character, his love of secretness.
Bolt: So he’s strange now?
Marr: It can be – it depends how you live with it, Andrew?
Bolt: Listen to yourself, David. Listen to yourself.
Marr: You read the excerpts and it is all clearly set out. David Flint was absolutely correct the other day. He said, you don’t “out” people unless their sexuality has an impact in public life. And Jones’ does. He is a very important figure in Australia…
Bolt: Listen, it’s the linking of the constant “nudge, nudge, wink, wink that he was with boys” with Masters actually admitting he has no proof at all of anything improper. If this happened to anyone else – this linking of being gay with being a pedophile, you would be the first, like I was when (Liberal senator Bill) Heffernan attacked Michael Kirby I was there saying this is disgraceful. You should be here attacking this kind of stuff.
- #18 Nic:
I saw that episode of Insiders too but didn’t get the impression Marr was put off by Andrew Bolt. When pressed to explain how outing Jones was at all relevant he fell back on the “Its all in the book” line and left it at that. Sternly intoned twice to make the point.
No answer at all but as a face saving exercise it was all he could come up with. He managed to maintain his composure though, which is a small mercy.
I found his (Marr’s) comments on the sad lack of anti war sentiment to be interesting as well. His line was that the population are not getting on board enough with the anti war thing. The implicit statement requires the insertion of the phrase “despite our best efforts at mobilising the shamblers…” as preamble, for clarity. Unsaid of course.
Pretty much an overt admission of bias for a journalist really.
- #22. It was The Insiders.At first,he had trouble containing his glee in his anticipation of Jones forthcoming discomfort but after being mauled by Bolt for his raving hypocrisy he was reduced to appearing to attempt to make a vague connection between gay school teachers who had charge of boys and,nudge nudge wink wink,inferred paedophilia.As he rambled on he seemed,finally, to become aware of where his loud mouth was taking him and shut up muttering words to the effect that “it was in the book”.While he stopped short of making a direct accusation the inference was clear.Quite a sick-making exhibition and right up to his usual standard,he certainly is one bitter and twisted little puppy.
- Marr’s just shitty he’s not the only Gay in the villagePosted by the nailgun on 2006 10 23 at 03:45 AM • permalink
- Why does Barrie Cassidy persist with giving Marr a seat? No other guests so shamelessly tries to turn it into his own show. Left or right. Just Marr.Posted by the nailgun on 2006 10 23 at 03:50 AM • permalink
- Hopefully Jones stays largely silent whilst this story breaks. He’ll have the luxury of sitting back and watching whilst Marr and Masters single-handedly and tackily destroy their reputations – Masters in pursuit of publicity for his new book, Marr in his attempts to forward his bizarre sexual-political agenda. I sense a spectacular own-goal has been booted.Posted by James Waterton on 2006 10 23 at 03:54 AM • permalink
- #33 – hah!Posted by James Waterton on 2006 10 23 at 03:55 AM • permalink
- Kae – Nic at #29 looks to be pretty right. I did see it and if Nic has anything wrong I’d be surprised. Howevr where he got transcript from I don’t know.Posted by the nailgun on 2006 10 23 at 04:43 AM • permalink
- Bolt: So he’s strange now?
Bolt: So being gay is strange now?
It’s on Bolt’s blog.Posted by Infidel Tiger on 2006 10 23 at 04:49 AM • permalink
- we all know that Marr is gay; as gay as gay can be. But this is not brought into the debate as everyone is soooo soooo politically correct, and we cannot mention it.
But it makes Marr’s actions even more reprehensible.
But apart from hating Jones’ politics , what Marr really hates is that he knows (or thinks he knows) that Jones is in the closet, and to the more militant gays this is a serious crime.Posted by arnienelly on 2006 10 23 at 05:15 AM • permalink
- I’ve found that Leftists, when confronted by a Transsexual/Intersexed conservative, have their brains implode.
Rightists just go “wha…” but soon recover.
But seriously, although I don’t advertise my medical history to those around me, I don’t make a secret of it either.
Just in case someone like Masters should decide to “out” me. I’m hideously embarressed by my congenital condition, but I’m not ashamed.
Both Masters and Marr should be.
- #14 James, I read the comments there, and there seems to be a leaning towards outing Jones being a good thing.
Those comments also reinforced for me the image of gays being overly concerned with their sexuality and having an inability to believe that nobody else (particularly heteros) actually give a toss.
As for AJ and whether he’s gay or not.. like I care. I’ve got more than enough on my plate without pondering the sexual escapades of media pundits.
Again, who cares?!
We all have mates who are gay, bi, brindle, whatever, and it’s irrelevant to anything unless it’s in our faces.Posted by Nilknarf Arbed on 2006 10 23 at 05:36 AM • permalink
- Chris Masters is probably getting that sinking feeling about now that perhaps, just perhaps, he’s strayed over an invisible line. Nothing definite of course, but the first hints of a shift in the wind are evident. What if all his leftoid mates start to have second thoughts – i.e., realise the knots into which they have to tie themselves to make homosexuality sound like news – and abandon him? Or even worse, ignore him?
Masters has taken a poorly calculated risk. He’s about to find out whether he’s added the numbers correctly, and – if he hasn’t – whether the leap in tax bracket is worth it. And the only person who’ll know will be Chris Masters when he looks in the mirror at 3am when he can’t sleep and is wondering why.
If it all goes wrong, then welcome to the world, Mr Masters, so wonderfully portrayed by Messers Marlowe, Goethe, Mann, Berlioz and others.
- Very funny update at Bolt’s blog:
An angry reader below defends Masters by asking me a cutting question:
“Just how do you spell hypocrit again?”
I deserve better critics, surely.
- #48, Zoe:
Well then, what does that make the likes of me?
When I first read your writing on your situation, my first thought was “wow, that must be uncomfortable”. It never occurred to me that your politics would be influenced, one way or the other, by your biology.
Does that make me a “centrist” or something? Gawd, I hope not. I dislike “centrists” more than I do the opposition. There’s nothing nastier, to me, than someone refusing to pick a side in a fight that concerns them too.
- All this discord in the Sydney gay community.. Marr versus Jones, etc
I dont know why they can’t just all pull together.Posted by arnienelly on 2006 10 23 at 06:49 AM • permalink
- #26 Inciters reasonably well balanced?
More like a seesaw with three Left at on end and one Right on the other.EVERY TIME -er that is when they actually bother to include a Right.Don’t gimme that Lenore (saggy) Taylor either -she’s a real soppy crybaby about most issues.
#38 “it was unfortunate when Cassidy had to cut off the conversation..” doesn’t he always if it begins to get interesting or doesn’t favour the Left. Red Bazza’s on auto pilot for those occasions.
Hanyu ..very wise words.
- The abc might be trying to distance itself now..(tho Red Kezza worked the inference of Paedophilia well over through “investigative “ reporter Masters).
Don’t forget he is Four Cornices’ most “celebrated” hack and the book (I think) was commissioned by the ABC and through them..correct me if I’m wrong.
Therefore they bear the responsibility.
- Although I don’t listen to AJ myself, and much as I am loathe to admit it, I do have friends and family that do. Yes, they are conservative and yes they thought that everyone already knew that Alan J was “gay”. Am I missing something? Nobody I know goes out of their way to discuss their sexuality – whether its hetero or not. Most of the people I know don’t recognise a link between sexuality and politics. Do you think this will be a surprise to the left?
- OK OK I’m coming out of the closet now
I do listen to Al when I can and I’ve always known he is gay
So what’s the big deal?
I’ve been reading the SMH crap and thinking – more $$$$ to Al so he can now buy another penthouse in the Toaster
And I listen, not because I agree with everything he says and does (like his defence of the hotel owner bloke in Manly who organised the shooting of his wife) but it’s the little things which according to the State Government of the day, are the rules, or are unfixable etc
I know it’s very small in the big scheme of things but I hitched my wagon to Al in the morning when he went in to bat for tinted windscreen installers – the State Government at the time – can’t remember the colour of it – was going to ban tinting car windows except a very minimal amount under special conditions
Al made a huge fuss on behalf on tinted window installation blokes who would be out of a job – and the public who WANTED tinted windows
Only small, but Al got this stupidity fixed within a couple of days
And this is why people listen to himPosted by aussiemagpie on 2006 10 23 at 11:23 AM • permalink
- David Flint was absolutely correct the other day. He said, you don’t “out” people unless their sexuality has an impact in public life.
Such as political or ideological advantage for the one doing the outing. I admit I don’t know these personalities, but the same thing is currently going on over here in the States. The left has decided that racism and homophobia are perfectly fine if they can be used as clubs to beat right-wingers with.
- #50 ‘whether the leap in tax bracket is worth it. And the only person who’ll know will be Chris Masters when he looks in the mirror at 3am’
I despise Jones for his greedy, cynically opportunistic capitalism, but he’s got guts too. [I only hear him on Media Watch[!], and once when he did a Derryn Hinch-type national show better than Hinch.]
I despise Masters for trying to hide behind public money while he makes a very cynical buck by outing someone of a different politics. That takes no class, and no guts either.
- I’d like to know if there’s anyone in the entire country who didn’t know that the Parrot was on the other bus? It’s hardly news. Bloody hell, it was well known when he was teaching at BBG and writing moronic speeches for Fraser, even more well known when he was coaching the Wallabies, especially when his “flatmate” was selected continually over other blokes who could run out of sight on a dark night. I don’t like the bastard- he’s about as conservative as a federal court judge, but I fail to see where there’s a public benefit in outing him as a bender.
It must stick in the craw of luvvies when they encounter a pillowbiter who isn’t a central casting socialist- Jones is far from being a liberal in the true sense of the word, but he’s not a frothing pinko either, and that grates.
Chris’s big brother Roy should take him out to the toolshed and give him a slap.
- #64 Speaking of Media Watch,Nanny was in a right taking last night,seething,bosom heaving indignation -woo it was like watching a crock pot sizzle.
She made great play of throwing recorded criticism of M.W. at us-must have been saving them up behind the nursery liquor cabinet.
If looks could kill,the Fed gov,Sen Coonan and most citizens of Australia would be well and truly dead.
- Sigh. Oh for the days when it was the love that dare not speak its name instead of the love that flounces around in a pink tutu screeching “look at me, look at me”. You’re here, you’re queer, get over your fabulous selves.Posted by Kyda Sylvester on 2006 10 23 at 10:53 PM • permalink
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BTW- I believe David Marr has been arrested for receiving swollen goods.