Journalist tweets, gets punched in the face by events

Caption: Just another night out in Melbourne. Nothing to see here, tweets Pete.

Twitter touts immediacy as its great virtue. Sometimes, however, the ability to instantly shout one?s every passing inanity to the wider world isn?t such a great idea. Sometimes, tweets just don?t age well: what seems like a clever bon mot quickly turns out to be more a case of hoist on one?s own petard.

Journalist and academic Peter van Onselen no doubt thought he was being devastatingly witty when he Tweeted that: Quote:

I’m at dinner in Melbourne, just got a call saying good night from one of my daughters. I was really worried about Sudanese gangs while I was out there taking the call…?End of quote.

Caption: Apparently Collingwood isn’t on Pete’s must-see list for Melbourne

Van Onselen?s sycophantic followers duly haw-haw-hawed at the this devastating riposte to all those racists in the more d?class? suburbs of Melbourne, who inexplicably see the hundreds of Africans rioting in their streets, trashing houses, stealing cars, and beating people within an inch of their lives, as some sort of, good lord, problem. After all, if the great and good of Melbourne never so much as see an African in their exclusive suburbs, what possible problem could there be?

The only problem is, that at almost the very time van Onselen was tweeting, something big was happening in an inner-Melbourne suburb. Quote:

Collingwood residents have described chaotic scenes after a car sped towards brawling partygoers in their quiet street on Sunday morning, hitting parked cars and pinning a young man to a car, leaving him fighting for his life.

The Age believes the man hit by the car was with the teenager accused of fatally stabbing 19-year-old Laa Chol in July on the night of her death. It is not known if the riot was payback for the alleged stabbing. End of quote.

Accused murderers, riots, attempting vehicular homicide: perhaps the snide Mr van Onselen takes all that in his stride, but locals aren?t quite as sanguine. Quote:

Mater Street resident Michael Devine said the scene was ?just anarchy”.

Nick Whelan [said] …?It was a noise like a soccer riot or something … fighting between each other, fighting anyone in sight.? End of quote.

Even good Samaritans were fair game for these violent animals. Resident Michael Devine had assisted one of the people badly injured by the collision. Then this happened. Quote:

?As Michael (Devine) went home he brushed a man who yelled ?don?t you touch me? and just punched him.?

Mr Devine said the man ?kicked the hell out of me”. “It was like they were all coming at me,? he said. End of quote.

Victoria Police, meanwhile, were living up to their Keystone Kops reputation. Quote:

Police knocked back a request for more resources?so as to not cause undue angst at the event, which was attended by about 200 people, mainly African Australians and Pacific Islanders?Several witnesses told Fairfax Media that officers were so outnumbered they were effectively reduced to bystanders until reinforcements arrived.

“Police presence was so low that they were just watching,” one witness ? who asked not be named ? said. End of quote.

It?s hard to say who are the biggest fools, here: police, who continue to do nothing but watch from the sidelines as Melbourne suburbs descend into violent anarchy or journalists who babble inanities on Twitter, even as hundreds of African gang members are rioting. Again.

When Pauline Kael said that she had never met anyone who voted for Nixon, she was joking about the cosy insularity of the elites. The witless elites of Australia actually mean it.