We at The Political Sword
understand how affronted you must have felt when News Limited’s hit-man James Massola ‘outed’ you as Greg Jericho, a public servant working in the film area of the Office for the Arts of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in Canberra. He knew that for over a year, and we too knew you were in the public service, that you worked at that job during the day and created your blog pieces after you had cleaned up after your evening meal. We admired your resilience and your capacity to write such incisive pieces late in the evening after a day’s work. Never did we perceive that you had written anything you had derived from your professional work.
So what was the big deal with Massola, or perhaps with News Limited that pulls his strings?
There has been a mountain of newspaper articles and blog pieces written about this unsavoury episode. Most in the Fifth Estate have been supportive of you personally and of your position. The consensus seems to be that you upset News Limited with your piece on Grog's Gamut
of July 30: Election 2010: Day 14 (or waste and mismanagement – the media)
that exposed the shallowness and incompetence of so much of the MSM’s coverage of the election campaign, and the preoccupation it had with trivia. The ABC’s Mark Scott was impressed sufficiently with what you said to discuss it with his senior executives and mention that fact at the Media 140 conference, but News Limited was sufficiently unimpressed with you that it set out to silence you by ‘outing’ you. The outcry from your many, many supporters must have given you solace, but as far as I can ascertain your last piece was on September 27: Spartacus no more
in which you explained how the situation in which you found yourself had come about. Why no more?
Of course not all media coverage has been supportive of your position, or indeed of the position of bloggers in general, as we saw in the Townsville Bulletin
, appropriately tagged ‘The Bully’, in its anonymous editorial Cowardly world of bloggers
which labelled us “…increasingly puerile bloggers, self-appointed guardians of righteousness and all that is wrong about society and, in particular, newspapers.”
And later in the article it asserted: “Bloggers, on the other hand, represent nothing. They whinge, carp and whine about our role in society, and yet they contribute nothing to it, other than satisfying their juvenile egos.”
This short piece is not intended to go over the ground already trampled by many others. Our sentiments and assurance of support were posted in comments on The Political Sword
at the time this story broke.
This piece is intended to reinforce our strong backing for what you have done in the blogosphere, to commend you for your forthrightness and the incisiveness of your comments, and to say that we are seriously missing your contributions to the political discourse. You have become one of the most respected bloggers in this country, followed assiduously by many who looked forward each day to your perceptive analysis of the day’s or week’s events. We are missing your penetrating, razor sharp appraisals of political events and political personalities, and hoping you will soon return.
We do not know if you are under any constraints that prevent you from continuing your blog, or are apprehensive that doing so might evoke another uncalled-for attack from News Limited. We earnestly hope that you have not been subject to intimidation. We do not presume to know your circumstances or feelings but I’m sure you will understand our motivation for saying: Grog, do come back – we need you.