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Who is Miranda Devine?

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, April 13th, 2015 - 46 comments
Categories: articles, australian politics, john key, making shit up, Media, national, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

She is the person who recently wrote a really obsequious article about John Key in the Daily Telegraph where she described him as one of the best Conservative Prime Ministers in the world.

Her piece is cringeworthy and I wonder how in one article she can have made so many basic mistakes.  Things like saying our economy is out performing Australia’s whereas all that is happening is that Australia’s is being crunched because they can no longer sell heaps of raw material to China at eye watering prices and they have leadership that do not know what to do.  Things like suggesting an unemployment rate of 5.7% is a good thing.  Things like calling National’s reforms “vigorous” or saying that “Labor” (notice the spelling) left a fiscal mess.  Or claiming Key has a daily press conference (as if) and that he does hours of talk back radio each week (as if this is a good thing).

She also says that Key has privatised just about everything (she should ask him what happened to the 51% of the power companies), and that he has cut billions out of the welfare budget (benefit payments have gone from $13.9 billion in 2008-09 to an estimated $18.8 billion in 2014-15) .  She also describes our electoral system as “absurd” and says that proportional representation makes governing more difficult. Obviously she does not know about the reverse take over of United Future and ACT that National has completed and the resultant poodles that now occupy two seats in Parliament.

She praises New Zealand for weathering the GFC and the Christchurch Earthquake.  She should thank Michael Cullen for our ability to do so.

The whole column is an unadulterated piece of dross.  It takes special skill to be able to produce writing this bereft of analysis or understanding and it intrigued me about Miranda’s background.

She knows the Keys personally.  Some Sunday afternoon lunches at Mossman in Sydney which they both attended is the link.  I am pretty confident they spent their time talking about how the poor have it too easy and the cost of hired help is far too much and how climate change is a fraud perpetrated on the world just so a few climate scientists could roll in the big bucks.

And she has this really annoying superior way of writing.  She lacks the intellectual power to understand what she is writing about and the grace to even contemplate that she may be wrong.

Her columns include this one where she criticised a progressive MP for introducing a marriage equality bill on the grounds similar bills had previously failed.  Sheesh with that logic we would still be stuck in Victorian times.  There is this one where she equates increasing taxation to cover the deficit with class warfare.  And this one where concern about domestic violence is ridiculed as a “feminist cause célèbre”.  And this one where she said that people who opposed racist anti islamic protests conducted by Reclaim Australia as “­mobs of Socialist Party activists, unionists, anarchists, Abbott-haters and ­assorted other disgruntles.”  And if you have the stamina this one suggests that teaching kids that there is nothing wrong with homosexuality involves the brainwashing of young children by thought police.

She is really strange.  If you want to read a really entertaining view of the effect she has on liberal Australians this piece by comic Tom Ballard is well worth a read.  He describes himself as a left-leaning homosexual ABC employee.  He was motivated after reading her claim that something like the 2011 London riots was more likely to happen because Labor MP Penny Wong and her lesbian partner were going to have a child.

The only thing nice he could say about Miranda was that if he ever became a drag queen he would adopt her name.  The not so nice things he said about her include this piece of purple prose outlining his response after reading her post:

I was in disbelief. I know there are some pretty shitty things on the internet, but I just couldn’t believe that this monstrosity got on there. How did you do that? How did people who work at a newspaper look at the thing I presumed you created by boiling up turds and salt in a cauldron in Fred Nile’s bungalow – how did they look at that and go, “Yep! This deserves to go in people’s heads!”???

I just couldn’t work out what you were saying, Miranda. Your piece was riddled with twists of logic and contradictions and crazy claims; I’m worried there’s something wrong with your keyboard – I think someone must have replaced one of the keys with a Bullshit Button.

His video rant is very entertaining.

So maybe Miranda Devine thinks that John Key is a great leader.  But I would not place too much weight on any opinion that she holds.

46 comments on “Who is Miranda Devine? ”

  1. weka 1

    What is Mossman?

    • veutoviper 1.1

      A trendy, high income suburb of Sydney NSW.

      • Olwyn 1.1.1

        It is also one of those flash suburbs that generate derisive adjectives – four wheel drives are called “Mossman tractors”, a certain blonde, mid-length women’s haircut is called a “Mossman bob” and so on.

    • Molly 1.2

      Mosman is a suburb in Sydney. (One of the overly exclusive ones)

    • mary_a 1.3

      @ weka (1) – Mossman is one of those places in Sydney where the high rollers and the local elite live! On another planet, you could say it’s where the ‘beautiful people’ reside. You know the place where the odious Key makes sure he’s seen.

      • Tracey 1.3.1

        Like Parnell?

        • alwyn 1.3.1.1

          @Tracey
          It is more like Herne Bay than Parnell actually.
          Very near the shore of the harbour.
          I thought of suggesting Devonport but Mossman would be, relatively, much closer to the city, even though it is north of the bridge.

  2. Not Arandar 2

    Apart from all that, she is probably THE most influential Australian political journalist.

    [There is a glitch. This comment was not submitted by Arandar] – Bill

    [lprent: someone hijacking a email address. Adding to permanent bans. By the look of it some kind of arsehole from Lauda Finem astroturfing a post]

    • weka 2.1

      except for the fact that she is patently not a journalist, right?

      • dukeofurl 2.1.1

        She was bought up in an Australian catholic background but her father was NZ born ( Frank Devine, who started out in Marlborough Express and then went to Western Australia. he ended up as an editor for Murdoch in New York)

        Strangely, she began working in textiles with the CSIRO after majoring in maths. But then did a masters degree in journalism in the US ( no doubt while Daddy was an editor in Chicago)

        Her articles could really be ghostwritten by the Catholic Archbishop of Sydney.
        Influential, she seems to have good inside knowledge but doesnt match NZ Heralds Fran O’Sullivan, who has real influence amoung the business community

    • Tracey 2.2

      Which is scary and most will read her glowing report without any challenge of the facts she relies upon to form that opinion. That makes her THE most influential and dangerous Australian political journalist.y

  3. fisiani 3

    One of the best Conservative Prime Ministers in the world is hardly flattering. She should have written the obviously more accurate
    The best Conservative Prime Minister in the world.

  4. Disabled Liberation Aotearoa NZ DLANZ 4

    Good item Mickey and thanks

    The Media / 4th Estate play a critical role in modern day society and Disabled Liberation Aotearoa NZ DLANZ​ believe the relationship between State and Media outlets are becoming too blurred. The recent closure of TV3 Morning News Firstline NZ was replaced with Paul Henry Show?? The John Campbell Live Show is rumored to be replaced by Jono and Ben??….TV shows linked to Radio Stations (Radio Live and The Rock respectively) ….who said Media Works Stephen Joyce?

    Combined with Television NZ TVNZ Breakfast on ONE, being nothing more than middle class couch potato advetorials of Government policies AND having to put up with a raving lunatic like Mike Hoskings the new Truby King of Aotearoa’s modern day raves of parenthood…..the masses of of consumers, especially those who can’t afford ‘choice’ for TV Channels (i.e. Sky)…..are vulnerable to propaganda and inculcation into a false consciousness and the Media, alongside Disabled must be ethically vigilant

    When I now hear the Waiata / song ‘American Pie’ by Don McLean, I say…”the day Media Integrity died’ when thinking of this ‘divine’ article.

    Regards and keep smiling
    Doug Hay
    Cordinator DLANZ

  5. logie97 5

    M.S. For a moment I thought you were talking about
    THE Daily Telegraph but then realised it was that Australian comic.

    And, as an aside, this raises an issue that appears to have grown recently in our own on-line media headlines. They can read as shock horror (social/economic/political), but when you read the article, it is usually reporting another country’s problem – quite often the States. But the effect of the headline is to suggest that NZ is going to hell in a handcart.

  6. The Murphey 6

    Appears to be a familiar pattern amongst the Murdoch press ‘journos’ with the hysterical writing style void of analysis or rational thought

  7. mary_a 7

    So this creature Devine is a friend of the Keys. They wine and dine in Mossman together. So of course she is going to ring the praises of the creep!

    Very dangerous woman methinks! A journalist? I very much doubt it. Could be in Key’s pocket to promote him, because he knows he’s on his way out the door.

  8. swordfish 8

    Uber-Conservative Catholic who loves to outrage.
    (I’m talking about Miranda, not Mickey).

    I came across her dumb-arse opinion-pieces a few years ago. From memory she’d written some particularly banal Israeli apologetics, complete with all the standard rhetorical strategies and mindless sloganeering. She’s a good chum (and Ocker version of) Britain’s horrendous Neo-Conservative bore, Melanie Phillips and, if I remember rightly, she was nurtured in her early days by none other than Mr Rupert Murdoch/Montgomery Burns himself.

    • tc 8.1

      Probably sees herself as resurrecting Bob Santamaria’s old crosses and crusading 21st century styles in honour of that old catholic conservative.

      he passed away in 1998 after many years of packer/murdoch soapboxes.

      • swordfish 8.1.1

        Yep and he played a pivotal role in keeping the ALP out of power for a couple of decades. A big fan of both Franco and Mussolini in his younger days, I believe.

  9. Richard Peters 9

    “… His video rant is very entertaining….” almost as amusing as yours I must say.

  10. Puckish Rogue 10

    Wow, this articles really got your knickers in a twist eh, its an article in an australian newspaper and you’re taking it seriously?

    Slow political news day or something?

    • felix 10.1

      It’s pretty clear that the point of the post was that micky recommends not taking anything homegirl writes seriously.

  11. Maui 11

    That article is enough to make you uncontrollably vomit over most paragraphs.

    You missed comment on the line “The NZ budget is heading towards a surplus…”

    “Most Kiwis are content to trust his judgment.” – She was obviously referring to a time prior to the Northland byelection, SkyCity, Dirty Politics, Iraq troops.

  12. philj 12

    Met up with several rellies , expat Kiwis, visiting from Oz. They all had read how well NZ was doing economically. Clearly, news of our rock star economy has been reported accross the Tasman. Seems they get the same spin that Kiwis do. Oz is struggling and we can expect migration from Oz! Line your shed, Jaffas, and make a buck! They’re a’ coming.

  13. miravox 13

    Apart from the tone of the article I’m not sure what the problem is. It is for Australian consumption after all, and compares how Key gets away with making changes that right-wing governments want where Abbott doesn’t. In essence Miranda Devine is saying that:

    – The New Zealand dollar is set to hit parity with ours, for the first time in 30 years.
    – [NZ’s] economy is growing 20 per cent faster
    – GDP per capita is rising while [Australia’s] is falling
    – Its competitiveness rankings have outstripped ours.
    – Its unemployment rate is 5.7 per cent compared with our 6.3 per cent, and that’s with a higher participation rate
    – [NZ’s] budget is heading to surplus

    By all means argue the validity of these as achievements, point out the errors, or what’s missing from this glowing comparison.

    I’d argue the dollar parity was in no way a good thing with NZ dependence on exports and financial transactions with Australia and the NZ budget is not heading to surplus. Bill English and Key himself have commented on how difficult this target is to reach

    On the budget surplus point, the way Key prepares New Zealanders for bad news is really the focus of the rest of the article. So much of the framing of this section is based on her personal relationship with the Keys it’s explanations and examples around the points are all pretty arguable, but the basic points are that:

    – … [National have] increased their majority at each election, while instituting vigorous -reforms
    – he presents a new model of reassuring, ¬decisive centre-right political leadership tailor-made for the 24/7 media demand for authenticity
    – Key increased the GST in NZ to 15 per cent without a blip to his popularity… he and English discussed their “tax switch” for 18 months beforehand
    – Key’s style is not to spring unpleasant surprises after an election
    – He created a clear narrative for his government
    – he decided early on that he needed to dominate the news cycle
    – Dubbed ‘Teflon John’, he has an uncanny ability to ¬implement unpopular policies without suffering electoral damage
    – he reintroduced knighthoods and gave Prince Philip a top honour but, unlike Tony Abbott, he only became more popular
    – His style has been dubbed “incremental radicalism”
    – He coaxes and lulls the electorate into accepting the medicine
    – In the end, this is what all successful political leadership comes down to: judgment

    Ignoring the way Key works reduces the opportunity to counter his style. For example, it still amazes me that he gets away with a ‘centre-right’ label.

    In the end manufactured authenticity is easy to fake with plenty of people around to go along with it. It’s lasted way too long though. Possibly natural authenticity of the type Little possesses will to the job of scrubbing off the teflon. Understanding how Key plays the political game important.

    • mickysavage 13.1

      Fair comment miravox. I agree that Key is a far more sophisticated politician than Abbott and I sensed a hint of despair on Devine’s part that this is so. But her justification for her conclusions I found hard to take …

      But yeah Key is way better than Abbott. In fact he has been quite formidable. Until recently …

      • miravox 13.1.1

        Yeah, her half-truths and extrapolations can’t be taken seriously. Maybe she is auditioning for a TV3 job, as suggested below.

  14. Colonial Rawshark 14

    And she is the kind of trash journalist that the owners and editors of major Western daily newspapers now print as informed political comment.

    Of course, what it actually is if we were being totally honest with ourselves, is PROPAGANDA. But in the west we don’t like to believe that we are constantly and routinely propagandised, so we’ll stick to calling it trash journalism.

    • miravox 14.1

      Yup propaganda is another word for the framing. Although the Australian media are not 100% on board with the right-wing infotainment agenda yet. Hence the push-back on their government’s ‘reforms’. Abbott is also not an easy sell compared to Key, however an artificial economic competition with NZ might be just the thing to bring the media hold-outs into line.

  15. repateet 15

    Who is Miranda Devine? Well having read all this stuff I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s the next big person on TV3 at 7.00pm! She seems to have the sort of cretin credentials they would be after. (I’ll let you work out who ‘they’ are.)

  16. Pat 16

    so Miranda Devine will be replacing Campbell at 7pm on 3 then?

    • repateet 16.1

      She would seem to have ALL the credentials. The way J Christie works, to add to the entertainment value there might have to be some novelty. Could be that that Ridge woman is on with her.

  17. Sable 17

    The Australian MSM is even more vile than the baked turds we have to endure here.

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