Q&A: “How dare you”

One of Q&A's most compelling moments of the year came in the closing minutes of last night's show.

One of Q&A‘s most compelling moments of the year came in the closing minutes of last night’s show when former PM Malcolm Turnbull took aim at The Australian’s Editor at Large Paul Kelly over coverage in Murdoch-owned newspapers about bushfire coverage as “arson” and print influence over democracy, more broadly.

Turnbull challenged Kelly to follow James Murdoch’s lead on climate change dissent and resign, which ignited a furious response from Kelly.

Finger pointing and criticism of Turnbull’s failures followed.

You can see the full vision at iview.

Host Hamish Macdonald was forced to bring things to a close, having already run overtime.

“We are a long way overtime,” he said. “I suspect this might continue in the Green Room.”

Update:  News Corp responds:

“Last night, former Liberal Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull made the false assertion against News Corp on the ABC’s Q&A program: ‘We had 12 million of hectares of our country burnt last summer and your newspapers were saying it was all the consequence of some arsonists.’

“This unsubstantiated statement is blatantly untrue. The facts demonstrate starkly the falsity of Mr Turnbull’s claim,” a News Corp Australia spokesman said.

It details press coverage here.

5 Responses

  1. I’m guessing Media Watch will mention this in the not to distant future –

    Because they did a big story about this earlier in the year on how the Murdoch papers were pushing the myth of arson over climate change re last summer’s fires.

  2. Malcolm’s a hypocrite. He passed Legislation giving Murdoch more power when he was PM. He’s partly responsible. He suddenly has a backbone. A pity he didn’t while he was PM.

  3. I don’t get the attempted shutting down of right-leaning media. It provides necessary balance. During the bushfires, there were concerns about arson. They were addressed and the fire authorities denounced claims of arson. That’s healthy news inquiry.

    There have been issues of scientific misconduct and other misconducts that were political and agenda based that wouldn’t be pursued and were sometimes covered-up by the left-leaning media. Having dual-sided media ensures healthy democracy and untrue claims can be refuted fairly instead of cutting off and blocking. I also express that I’m not a climate change sceptic.

    Ultimately, it comes down to vested interests and the influences of agendas on both sides of the news spectrum and it shouldn’t be like that.

  4. Paul Kelly would not even look at Jan Fran, he obviously had no comeback. She was great, as you said she put them in their place. Too bad Hamish had to pull the plug, could have been interesting….

  5. I found Jan Fran’s contribution immediately following this exchange, putting both men in their place, far more compelling. Surprised it hasn’t received more coverage today, although I can see how how the viscerally outraged “How dare you!” of Kelly, as his mask slipped, is something to behold.

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