Twitter and FB have imploded after Alan Jones gave a speech to the Sydney University Young Liberal Club saying that Ms Gillard’s father, whom recently passed away, died of shame because of his daughters lies. You know something is really offensive when even the most conservative thinkers gasp in recoil. This has caused outrage and a quick response from politician’s on both sides condemning Mr Jones’ behaviour and which includes Tony Abbott, who gave a weak statement about how Mr Jones (a close friend of Mr Jones) has been a naughty boy (see: http://news.theage.com.au/breaking-news-national/abbott-says-jones-was-out-of-line-20120930-26t8o.html).
The shallow performance of Mr Jones’ apology to Ms Gillard was a poor attempt to smooth things over with his sponsors and radio network (see http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-09-30/jones-apologises-for-black-parody-remarks/4288118). What was really telling was his use of language, his facial movements and his varying speech styles. All of these things add up to “I don’t really mean it” (see Dr Paul Ekman’s work on micro expressions https://face.paulekman.com/face/aboutmett2.aspx).
But putting that aside for the moment, we need to reflect on whether or not we should be so surprised and how it is, when one looks at the behaviour of this man in the past, could still be on air. From saying Ms Gillard should be drowned in a chaff to women are “destroying the joint” should have been enough to him shut down. This may be the worst of his crimes so far but lets reflect on the history of this so called political powerhouse and current king of the Sydney Shock Jocks.
Mr Jones is charged with two counts of outraging public decency in London’s West End. The charges were later dropped by the police (due to lack of evidence) and Mr Jones was awarded costs from the police.
Mr Jones is dismissed from the Sun-Herald for plagiarism and was then hired by their rival the Sunday Telegraph.
Mr Jones was ordered by the court to pay Mr David Parker $55,000 in defamation charges for election to the NRMA Council in October 1986. 2UE was also ordered to pay Mr Parker $80, 000 for the same incident.
July: Mr Jones was charged with contempt of court which was not held up, but Jones was deemed a dangerous man.
Mr Jones as he found himself once again (along with 2UE) in contempt of court when the criminal trial against ex-policeman John Killen had to be aborted because of an interview Mr Jones conducted with a former Drug Enforcement Squad Officer.
January: Mr Jone’s describes Australian of the Year winner, Mr Mandawuy Yunupingu as an “insult” and given the award because he’s an indigenous person (I find it too vile to repeat his words here. They are not warranted So I have heavily paraphrased his remarkshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Jones_(radio_broadcaster)#cite_note-34).
March: Contempt of Court charges were prosecuted by the NSW Department of Public Prosecutions (DPP) against Mr Jones and 2UE for yet another aborted case against an ex-police officer
June: Mr Jones makes yet more racially driven comments live on television about indigenous people to Mr Charles Perkins about land rights.
April: Jones’ failed television program Alan Jones Live is finally pulled off air by Channel 10
July: Media Watch highlights Mr Jones on-air promotion of Optus
November: Mr Don Mackay (NRMA President at the time) sued Mr Jones and 2UE for making a number of false imputations about him.
Jones had a very public row with then fellow broadcaster Mr John Laws which lead to the then PM Mr Paul Keating to comment: “You know, he’s got a good rating program, even though it’s basically, you know, most of the stuff is middle of the road fascism”.
Mr Jones is sued by Bill Harrigan for defamation and is awarded $90,000. On top of this Mr Jones is publicly humiliated by the leaking of pre-recordings of his show on Triple J(see: http://tindeck.com/listen/dulw). Personally the “dust” comments are hilarious…
1999 – 2004
Mr Jones one of the radio presenters caught up in the “Cash for Comments Scandal” that lead to changes in the law to stop it from happening again. (see http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/s1095125.htm & good ol’ wiki for a highlights package: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cash_for_comment_affair). He spent a lot of time lying about it.
April It was relieved that the then chairman of the Australian Broadcasting Authority (ABA) who headed the Cash for Comments enquiry sent admiring letters to Mr Jones as was not as impartial as first thought.
Mr Jones encourages the Cronulla Riots where extensive property damage, assaults and violent acts against ambulance officers . He OPENLY encouraged it. (http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2005/12/12/1134236003153.html and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cronulla_riots).
October: Mr Jones and The Daily Telegraph were referred to the NSW Supreme Court because of allegation’s against legal council in an inquest into the death of Private Jake Kovco which could have lead to prejudicing the inquest.
Mr Jones was convicted of contempt of court again for the naming of a juvenile witness in a murder trial. Jones appealed the conviction until it was turned over on the 27th of March. The Judge Mr Finnane said that Mr Jones was guilty of contempt but over annulled it anyway (or legal reasons that I don’t understand)
Mr Jones vilifies Brigadier Lyn McDade and due to his timing was not charged with contempt of court yet again. (see: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/inaccurate-vilification-beyond-joness-remit/story-e6frg6zo-1225939391939)
November: ACMA finds that Jones in in breach of the commercial radio code of practice when reporting environmental issues. His use of inaccurate figures and one-sided reporting landed him in hot water.
December: Mr Jones is being sued by bureaucrat Terry Clout over comments he made in March, 2009.
June: ACMA finds Jones guilty again of unsubstantiated environmental claims.
I am sure, Dear Reader, you would agree that if anyone else had behaved at work the way Mr Jones has, they would be quickly deprived of their capacity to earn a wage at that particular company. Is it because he owns the company he works for? Is it that all the fines for contempt of court have really not damaged his hip pocket? Has he had protection because of his membership to the Liberal Party? Why hasn’t Mr Abbott kicked him out if he actually believes that his friends actions were out of line? Why did it take so long for Mr Abbott to comment on the disgusting display when other politicians responded straight away?
Mr Jones, clearly, by his behaviour over the last 25 years, needs to be stripped of his Order of Australia, kicked out of the Liberal Party, fired from 2UE and be bought in front of the ACMA and be forced to pay serious money in damages and striped of his rights to broadcast on any medium for a set period of time. He has insighted violence. Insulted the Prime Minister and fuelled gender discrimination.
The evidence suggest that Mr Jones is unstable and the last thing he should be able to do is speak, without filter, to an audience of angry and frightened people. He should be held accountable both in the law and in society for what his has done both in the past and his current violations.
Sadly Dear Reader, I doubt very much that what should be done, will be done. Mr Jones will continue to abuse his privilege and continue to give shallow apologies. There will be ill informed people screaming “freedom of Speech” in Mr Jones’ defence.
In the words of Spiderman:
Mr Jones should read some comics.