Conspiracy theories are ok if you’re Green

Photoshopped image: Lushington Brady.

The legacy media had an epic meltdown when Pauline Hanson appeared to question the official account of the Port Arthur massacre.

Of course, the footage – like everything else about the questionable hack job perpetrated on One Nation last month – was edited so badly that it was difficult to discern what Hanson was actually saying. It was clear, though, that she had at least read some conspiratorial accounts regarding Port Arthur. But, so what? I perforce read conspiracy material sometimes, too: Moon landing conspiracies, 9/11 “Truthers” and so on. That doesn’t mean I believe a word of them.

Still, that didn’t stop the legacy media from going into overdrive about “Pauline Hanson conspiracy theories”.

On the other hand, when a Greens candidate explicitly gibbers Port Arthur conspiracies, the left-media are notably silent. quote.

A Greens candidate claimed on ­social media that Martin Bryant didn’t commit the 1996 Port ­Arthur massacre in which 35 ­people died. He then denied making the comments, before later ­admitting he wrote them. end quote.

A sinister hallmark of this election has been the media and political dirt units trawling through years of peoples’ social media in order to find anything that can be trumped up into a hit-job. This is a cheap and dirty tactic that smacks of McCarthyism.

I’m less bothered that a Greens candidate subscribes to looney conspiracy theories (it pretty much goes with the territory for being a Green), than by the hypocrisy of the legacy media. Hanson was pilloried and openly bullied by self-righteous media and leftist politicians. Yet, when a Green says something nuttier than anything Hanson ever did…crickets. quote.

The Facebook comment on a Port Arthur conspiracy theory page from David Paull, the Greens candidate in the western NSW seat of Parkes, said the massacre looked “like an operation designed for psychological manipulation of the general ­population”.

“There is only one sure thing in my mind — Bryant didn’t do it and so a great crime on the Australian people was committed,” the Nov­ember 2018 comment, unearthed by social media intelligence and news agency Storyful, reads.

Mr Paull added he supported “some gun control”. end quote.

Even worse is the transparent damage control by the Greens. It’s one thing to have nutters in your ranks, quite another to run cover for them. quote.

After initially telling The Australian he did not write the comment, an “incredibly embarrassed” Mr Paull later admitted he had, while investigating the views of Port ­Arthur conspiracy theorists.

“I made those comments after an admin asked new members to justify their presence in the group. I absolutely do not believe, and have never believed, that Port Arthur was a conspiracy, nor do I have any doubt Martin Bryant was guilty of that horrendous crime. I support the Greens policies on gun control 100 per cent,” he said.

Greens NSW state campaign manager Andrew Blake said the party was satisfied with Mr Paull’s explanation: “We have talked to him and he is very remorseful for having misrepresented himself.” end of quote.

theaustralian


But, again, it’s hardly surprising. The Greens are a magnet for left nutters. Port Arthur conspiracies are hardly the province of the “far right”: I’ve seen loud and proud Marxists repeating exactly the same conspiracy theories.

It’s just that the legacy media aren’t interested in exposing the nutcases on their own side.

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UPDATE: The candidate has since resigned. However this means he will still appear on the ballot and is still entitled to claim a seat if elected. In contrast to the blanket coverage of Pauline Hanson’s comments, this affair has still only rated the very briefest of mentions on the national broadcaster. Perhaps unsurprisingly: a survey has found that 40% of ABC journalists vote Green, in contrast to 9% of the general population.

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