June 01, 2003


Stephen Pile, a photocopier repairman from New Jersey, has strong opinions about the war in Iraq. For some reason this has attracted the attention of newspapers worldwide.

Oh, wait; my mistake. It wasn’t a photocopier repairman. It was a movie actor. And his name is Sean Penn, not Stephen Pile. Apologies.

UPDATE. Lee at Right-Thinking guides Mr Penn towards a better understanding of the issues.

Posted by Tim Blair at June 1, 2003 03:40 AM

Being preoccupied with the major Sydney newspapers and your good mates at the ABC, you probably don't get much of a chance to scan what passes for media in Queensland. In that case I'd like to point you to the Sunday Mail (a Murdoch rag, believe it or not) and to the recently enthroned Jim Soorley, until the week before last Brisbane's Lord Mayor, who has a regular column in it. Jim was a reasonably effective Lord Mayor, let it be said. As a journalist/philosopher/commentator on international affairs, he is definitely wanting. Lord Jim, let it not be forgotten, had Brisbane declared a "nuclear free zone" some years ago, and I believe visitors to Brisbane are still afflicted with signs to this effect when leaving the airport terminal. My particular point is Jim's column in today's Sunday Mail, in which he gushes over his good fortune in being able to dine with Al Gore in Melbourne last week. I'll let Jim speak for himself

"I was lucky to be at lunch with Al
Gore in Melbourne this week.

"This is the man who won the US presidential election but is not the president.

"He won the majority of votes, in the majority of states. Even in Florida he would have won except for the one million African-Americans taken off the roll and not allowed to vote, and the faulty voting machines. Then the Supreme Court delivered a 5-4 decision favouring the Texan.

"How the world would have been different if Al Gore was president. The US and Australia would have signed the Kyoto agreement, there would have been no attack on Iraq, and the US economy would not be in its inevitable decline under another Bush.

"Gore spoke eloquently about the environment and tertiary education, and he was amazingly humorous. When asked how he felt about the defeat, he said: 'Well, I used to there was win and lose. I now know there is a third option.'

"His most impressive quality was his lack of bitterness about being robbed of the presidency."

Apart from Jim's unfortunate ignorance of the subjunctive mood, his piece just cries out for a fisking.

Kind regards

Geoff Kenney

Posted by: Geoff Kenney at June 1, 2003 at 09:24 PM

Under Gore, the US would still be begging China to return their spy plane, when it wasn't too busy negotiating the terms of its surrender to Osama bin Laden.

He might even have used Neville Chamberlain's "Peace in our Time" speech to sell it to American voters.

Incidentally, I voted for Gore. Nobody knows the failings of a person better than a former fan.

Posted by: Tatterdemalian at June 1, 2003 at 10:33 PM

Every football fan understands that sentiment, Tatterdemalian.

Posted by: Scott Wickstein at June 2, 2003 at 12:30 AM

so actors can't have strong opinions about politics, but bloggers can? um, why?

Posted by: Gianna at June 2, 2003 at 02:33 PM

Noticed any blogger opinions being written up in the worldwide press lately, Gianna? Maybe we have to make a movie first.

Posted by: tim at June 2, 2003 at 07:54 PM

oh, have you lost your Bully gig? not that it's worldwide i guess, but still.

Posted by: Gianna at June 3, 2003 at 02:33 PM