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(generated from captions) This Program is Captioned Live.Hi, I'm Julia Baird and coming up on 'The Drum', the Opposition unveils its asylum seeker policy, Operation Sovereign Borders. WikiLeaks announces its candidates for the federal election, and Australian cyclist Stuart O'Grady disgraced after admitting to doping. Joining me on the panel tonight - Steve Pennells, Pamela Williams and Patricia Karvelas, but first Kathryn Stolarchuk with the latest newsThe Coalition is planning to boost the role of the military in Australia's border protection arrangements. Under Tony Abbott's plan code named Operation Sovereign sorf, a high-ranking military commander would take over operational control of the agencies involved in border protection. The military representative would be answerable to the Immigration Minister.The death toll from a train crash in Spain has risen to at least 77. The train ran off the tracks while travelling along a high-speed line near Santiago de Compostela in Spain's north-west. More than 200 passengers were on board and it's thought that some may soon be trapped in the wreckage. At least 140 people were injured.Australian champion cyclist Stuart O'Grady has been asked the Australian Olympic has been asked to resign Committee's Athletes' the Australian doping. The Olympic gold Commission after admitting to doping. The Olympic gold medal,
former world doping. The Olympic gold 17-time Tour de France rider
has

has admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs once in the lead-up to the 1998 once in the lead-up Tour de France. O'Grady's Tour de France. admission comes just days after his retirement admission comes just days his retirement from the sport and after being named in a his retirement from the and French Senate inquiry and after being named in doping in sport.And the doping in sport.And and Duchess of Cambridge have named their new son George. The and Duchess of Cambridge have third in line to the throne will be known as his yoi al Highness Prince George of Cambridge. George Alexander Louis, all three names had been listed among the favourites by British bookmakers. That is the lacest news. Now back to 'The Drum' with Julia Baird.

British Live.

Live.

Hello. Live. Drum'. I'm Julia Baird. Coming up, will the Coalition's plan, Operation Sovereign Borders, stop people smugglers? WikiLeaks launches its political campaign. Senate candidate Dr Alison Broinowski will tell us what the party stands for. The inside story of the demise of Fairfax Media, and cyclist Stuart O'Grady's record tarnished after his doping confession. Our panel tonight - the 'West Australian''s Steve Pennells, 'Killing Fairfax' author Pamela Williams, and in Melbourne, 'The Australian' Victorian editor and bureau chief hashtag "thedrum".Now, the Patricia Karvelas. And you can hashtag "thedrum".Now, the PM join in on Twitter using the unveiled his plan to stop asylum seeker bots last week. Today Tony Abbott revealed part of his policy. The Opposition Leader wants to combat people smugglers with a military-led multi-agency taskforce. The Coalition has labelled the $10 million scheme Operation Sovereign Borders. The taskforce would be led by a high-ranking military commander, answerable directly to the Immigration Minister. Mr Abbott says the current system can't do the job.It's about adding cohesion, consistency, direction, determination at a sufficient level of organisation and urgency. This is a national emergency. We've got to treat it as such. That's why a military-led taskforce is the way forward.The PM was quick to dismiss the new policy as another catchphrase.Mr Abbott's alternative strategy is this: A three-word slogan. Stop the boats. Everyone would like to add three words for Mr Abbott - how will you stop the boats? Make it a six-word slogan. Then he has a new three-word slogan today. I think it's called Operation Something or other. Operation Sovereign Borders or something. So two 3-word slogans. Stop the boats and Operation Sovereign Borders.Something or other responding to a national emergency. What did you make of it, Steve?It sounds like a bad Chuck Norris movie. It's insane. The situation is getting ridiculous. Sovereign borders, national emergency. It is not a national emergency. We don't have one. Refugees move globally around the world. It
always has happened. Let's deal with it like most civilised countries do. But we've lowered this debate to - it's very Americanised like the Patriot Act,Framing things.Now it's been framed up as though it is an invasion. Let's get a 3-star military commander in there. It does sound like a bad movie, and what's frustrating is this is now setting the tone for the election debate. This is all we're hearing. We're hearing this from Rudd, we're hearing it from Abbott and it is not an issue. It is not an issue. It is a political issue that they've created and we're getting all wrapped up in it, talking about it, it's dog whistle stuff.Aside from the language, though, what should the role of the military be? Are they right to say we need an official, need coordinated response between agencies, this requires a substantial taskforce?Depends on what you want to do. What is this person doing? He is reporting to military guy. He has Immigration Minister, a military guy. He has power to
direct military guy. He has direct military resources
without the chain of command,

without going to Defence. How without the chain of is that going to without going to Defence. is that going to work? How is is that going someone who will be at different level to the Defence chain of command be able to go chain of command be able to in there and move things around? At who point will it be used for political purposes. If the Immigration Minister says do this, are our defence forces moving around trying to push back boats and Abbott talked of Rudd trying to set up war talk with Indonesia. Now he has got military vessels and 23-star commanders pushing boats back.Is that how you see it, Pam, war talk? Well, it is war talk and what has happened is that Abbott has been so pushed by the re-emergence of Rudd that he has had to come up with some kind of a strategy, some sort of solution to Rudd moving the goal post. I have to say that a lot of it I'm finding confusing at the moment, there are so many unanswered questions and what has made me think what's going on is we've got something we haven't had for quite a long time, we hadn't contest going into this election. Things have suddenly tightened up. Where we had what seemed to be a lay-down misere before, taking this to the political, talking about the policy itself because I'm very interested in the politics of this and I just think that we are now seeing a contest developing. There was really no contest in the forthcoming election up until Rudd came back, Rudd reducks, but Abbott against his will, drawn in to having to come up with responses, having to come up with something that is dramatic, like Steve is saying is rubbish, it's crazy. I'm not having a lot of luck working out how the PNG thing will work. It seems we've got from nowhere to somewhere with PNG really going
in 30 seconds flat, but what is really going on is the emergence of a political contest to take us into the political intervention.If I can intervene, the last week has felt to me liken tirely a political campaign. We may as well be on a campaign. There is no difference as far as I can see what's happened this week from Friday, Kevin Rudd's announcement to noi. What we saw with Kevin Rudd's PNG announcement was big, bad policy that was delivered so late in the afternoon was subjected to very little scrutiny, looked like it could work, got pretty good headlines, pretty good in terms of its ability to stop the boats, pretty good response and over the last week it's unraveled a little because so many questions have been raised about how possible it is to get a detention centre set up there, it's still not been set up there in the last two years.I do want to ask you about the actual detention centre and the facilities in PNG, but can you just talk us through the politics of it and the Coalition's response first of all?Well, I do think the timing perhaps is very political. Obviously on Friday they were a little bit blindsided about just how dramatic the PNG deal announced by Kevin Rudd was. The timing was very political. The Coalition needed to get on the front foot. Let's remember that the Newspoll that was published on Tuesday, while Kevin Rudd may have, his own polling may have gone back a little, what did go up was the Labor Party's - the understanding of how Labor Party was responding to what he
border security, so obviously what he did on the PNG deal has helped him and the perception that Labor was failing on this policy. So Tony Abbott has, I think, rushed out a policy that he was no doubt working on already. I mean, the "turn back the boats" policy needed a lot of infrastructure around it if you like, policy infrastructure about how it would be implement ed, so by collapsing the command structure and making this 3-star military official respond directly to the Immigration Minister, he has re-calibrated the way this all operates and how these decision also be made. Now, I actually think the devil is in the detail obviously, so what we've seen is even Kevin Rudd's response was extremely political, it was mocking Tony Abbott. It was the three-word slogans. Is he trying to bash him on what Tony Abbott is vulnerable about which is a lot of his policy and public persona is all about catchphrases, slogans, but it doesn't mean anything. What's that Kevin Rudd attacked him on. He didn't get into the detail, didn't seem to me to oppose any of this or really get to the detail of it, but this afternoon we had a statement out by the Australian Defence Association which is an association which is pretty credible, a lobby group, but a very credible lobby group on this issue who have said they are not happy with the Tony Abbott plan, that there are problems with it,
that that it overly politicises the military. I think we will see Rudd in the coming days seize on that and use that critique of the policy as his way of trying to diminish Tony Abbott's credentials on this policy which he is on the front foot on. But both sides have done that. If you have a well thought-out policy, you would think you would run it by people who would be involved in it.He did run it by a few people, de. But current chain of command in Defence?Well, he did run it but Hurley and another officer. A retired officer.Yes . Talking about a current chain of command. Rudd has done the same thing with PNG deal. He didn't consult UNHCR and you think you might consult with the organisation that deals with the refugees.Yes, I want to pick up on that. The Immigration Minister has arrived in Papua New Guinea to inspect the facilities on Manus Island. Tony Burke has been investigating a whistleblower's allegations of widespread sexual assault and add bus there. The Government wants to increase the capacity at Manus Island to 3,000 asylum seekers. The minister is confident the facility will cope with the extra numbers.I have no doubt at all that a processing centre here on Manus can operate even with a significantly increased capacity, can be operated to the standards that you would expect.Meanwhile, Malcolm Fraser has compared the detention centres in Island and Nauru to the gulags of the Soviet Union. The former prime minister wants a royal commission to probe the Immigration Department's management of offshore processing.They've allowed the most terrible conditions to prevail. What's happened on Manus is not new, it has been going on for months and months. The department have known that and it's only public exposure that has brought it to light, brought about hopefully some change.At least six boats carrying asylum seekers have been stopped by Australian authorities since Kevin Rudd announced his new hardline policy. The PM believes the message will get through eventually.This is tough business. I said last Friday this was going to be a challenge for the long haul. Said very clearly that there would be bumps in the road, there will be, but I challenge anybody to come up with an effective alternative strategy given how big the challenge is for us and for all countries in the world.Patricia Karvelas, can you provide us with perspective on this? We've been trying to digest it ever since Friday afternoon, but today the papers are saying Rudd plan in tatters and camps labelled gulags." "Rudd's asylum solution sinking. The" is this hyperbole?Yes, one week a very long time in politics. He was a hero a weeking ago.There are concerns about capacity, about crowding, about the humanitarian conditions, but what are we looking at? Are we looking at something in tatters, grave concerns about something to be implemented?You would have to say it's not going to terribly well. It is two years in the making and it's still not up. Looks like a tent city there. I believe the Government's argument where they say they have to go through the necessary health checks and immunisation and so forth. I buy that argument, but I think certainly the message hant filtered through. We haven't seen a dramatic slowdown of the boats. Kevin Rudd said at the start, pretty clever, "Don't expect this to happen overnight." Don't know if the Government has advice as to how long it might take until asylum seekers say, "There is no way I will get on the boat because I won't make it to Australia" - we haven't seen that kind of reaction yet. I think that Manus will be an extremely controversial policy, controversial in terms of its humanitarian response, how it treats people, whether it's adequate. I mean, can you really send women and children to Manus? I'm not convinced, given that Tony Burke, the Immigration Minister has made it clear that he does take his role as the guardian of children and also the has to take care of people's welfare seriously. I don't think that Manus is a really viable option yet, yet the Government is sticking to this policy that they will send people there. When will they start? How will they be housed? Is it a safe environment? I think these questions are live questions and very real.Pamela, Kevin Rudd is saying this won't happen overnight, but what has happened overnight is more boats have come. 522 people at last count on Christmas Island waiting to be redirected. Do you think it is a matter of time before facilities will be overwhelmed?Absolutely, absolutely. With this policy - let's face it, this is a horrible situation. As Steve as said, we don't have a refugee crisis, but we do have a political crisis now of course with the boat people situation and I just and I is and I just can't see that this there being absolute screams is going to work out from Australia as the there being absolute from Australia as the terrible
stories come out from Australia as the stories come out of what's happened stories going happened to people and there is
going to Tony Burke is not going going to be more outrage Tony Burke is not going to be
able Tony Burke is not able to spend every 10 minutes over there checking what's able to spend every 10 happened of late, but over there checking will be reporting happened of late, will happened of late, but the media think it is will be reporting it, and I think it is a very big challenge for making this work.There are going to be problems from the beginning to the end. You are taking people into a place that is going to into a place that is going be incredibly difficult, and we're already not dealing with the outcome that we know already. I mean, Malcolm Fraser calling it gulags at Manus is really extraordinary language and this is only the beginning. This is - the whole PNG story is only just at the very opening of the door.? It's interesting, actually, because when Kevin Rudd launched this policy on Friday, it was clear - I don't think anyone would disagree with this - the politics as clear. He was trying to neutralise the issue, is the term in politics, equal the Coalition or actually outdo them and kill this issue, take the heat out of this issue by saying, "We're going to deal with this, we will stop this," so that the Opposition couldn't get as much political mileage out of saying they're not managing this. They've failed over a succession of prime ministers over the years, they can't deal with this issue. The boats aren't stopping. It has actually put the heat back in.Exactly. Absolutely put the heat back on. Never seen anything quite like it.A lot of this heat is dependent on the tiling. A difficult week, months to the election, and few weeks oer a couple obviously - I months to the obviously - I think people would Have A obviously - would Have A Go much more of an appetite of what people call loosely teething problems or establishing proms in establishing facilities at Manus Island if there were stronger evidence of deterrence. We're getting very mixed messages from people in various camps overseas, about whether people smugglers will continue to press on or in the vain hope. It leaves the Government in a rather difficult position?I don't know why we don't process them on land like every other civilised country in the world does, we are the only ones that... People keep drowning, so how would you deal with that. This is the conundrum that I agree has been politicised and the drownings have been used as a political football by both sides of politics, I think, but despite that, I still don't like the people drowning on their way to Australia and any government or any opposition that is credible has to deal with that.Of course, the people drowning is terrible, but to use that as an excuse to set up these gulags and have women and children - since the no-advantage policy was introduced in August last year, there have been virtually no processing of police stations, so these people are in limbo and they will be in limbo in other places. Is that humane or the right thing to do? I don't think it is.What did you think of Malcolm Fraser's call for a royal commission?I think it's a good idea, but again that just drags things out and drags things out. We've created this perception that there is this massive crisis and we're dealing with this in the way we need a deterrent. We act like we're in a vacuum, but we're not. There are push factors around the world and the global refugee population grows and moves.That's right because that's exactly what I want to ask you about because you've just come back from Syria where almost 2 million people fled, the war was in 2011Yes.What do you see of the refugee situation thereThe reason I'm passionate about talking about our current crisis because it's not a crisis because I put it into perspective. Over in Jordan, for example, they've had 1.7 million people come across the border, the population of Perth in, towns double on the border. Jordan has open-door policy. 15,000 asylum applications last year. That's two and a half days of Syrians streaming across the border. By the end of the year it will be 10 million people. I spent days on the try angular Border of Syria and Iraq and Jordan and the attitude is the complete opposite. Their job was to go to the no machine man's land, pick up the families and refugees, bring them back, house them and feed them and then help move them across to the cities while they're being processed. I asked one of the generals, "Why are you doing this?" He said, "It's our human duty." I said, the military to push "You know in the military to push people
away." "You know in Australia they use
the military to away." He said, "When people need help, why don't you help them?" But them?" But we won't have 60 years of people in refugee camps, that's the thing. Australia won't tolerate that.We wouldn't have that, though. If we processed them - bring them in, process them on land. If they're legitimate as more than 90% are Bring them inWhy aren't we looking at the same thing with the plane arrivals? It's so political, it's frustrating. More than 90% of the boat arrivals are legitimate refugees. That's not the case with plane arrivals, but these ads are targeted only at boats, PNG only at boats.Especially war-torn country can give you another perspective. We need to move on, Pa Trisha to our next story which is about Julian Assange who officially launched the WikiLeaks political party today via a video link from London. The party will field six candidates for the Senate in three states - Victoria, NSW and WA. Mr Assange is the first candidate on the party's Victorian ticket but acknowledges he may not be able to take his seat in the Parliament if voted in. The founder of WikiLeaks has been granted asylum by Ecuador and has been living in that country's embassy in London for over a year, while he battles extradition to Sweden onnal gayses of sexual assault. Let's listen to what he had to say earlier.It's 3am here in London and the night is black, the embassy is surrounded by police, most of which have gone to sleep, but we thunt treat Canberra the same way. Canberra needs to be a place of light, not a place of darkness, and over the last 30 years, really, we've seen a gradual decline in the quality of Australian democracy.The WikiLeaks party is campaigning for transparency in the Rudd Government's deal with PNG on asylum seekers and will also focus on press freedom and climate change. Now, Patricia, I wanted to ask you about this first of all, what kind of impact do you think that WikiLeaks could have in this election?Oh, I think WikiLeaks absolutely could mobilise a lot of the youth vote, a lot of vote, a lot of young people
particularly who see Julian Assange as a kind of freedom fighter, if you like, for transparency and for opening up the doors and the windows to governments and information, so I think he is a very high-profile name and that name WikiLeaks is very much obviously completely linked to him, so I think that they will mobilise some of the vote. I think some of their candidates are also quite well-known in the community where they want to mobilise those votes, which are among young people, left-leaning people in the inner city. What I'm interested in is I wonder what sort of deal, I don't think anything has been announced, they might come up with the Greens in terms of some kind of preference-sharing that they might come up with, because they seem to me to have a very similar base. The sort of people who vote for the Greens would be interested in voting for WikiLeaks. It would be interesting to see how they manage that kind of relationship because I think Julian Assange will get people voting for him and I think the other candidates will by default, as they're linked to this party.That's right. What do you think, Steve? Do you think they could actually gain some seats? Well, I think the climate right now is perfect for them. People are disillusioned with both main parties and then there is massive distrust of parties so WikiLeaks is a credible or freedom kind of legitimate voice. A lot of young people see them as that, see them as the anti-establishment, anti-cynical, anti-cynicism party. So I definitely think they could do that. People are disillusioned with the Greens as well. They are perfectly placed.In this election? Mmm.Would awe agree with that, Pam, do you think that it is a problem that their leader is holed up in Ecuador in an embassy and might not be able to take a seat if he were to win one?Well, Julian Assange has been this sort of global troublemaker for quite a long time and perhaps that's part of his cache now to the sort of people I would imagine who would be voting for them, and I was thinking about this earlier when we were discussing this before and Assange leapt onto the scene just a few years ago for Australians, because of course we didn't know who Assange was when he came to public prominence and he seemed to be this sort of stateless freedom fighter, as Steve is calling him, sort of moving around the world with these massive leaks and bombarding websites, and all of a sudden it's crystallised into a fight against America, a fight for freedom, and yet Assange always said from the early days when America went after him and he got himself into trowel, of course, which is why he is holed up in embassies, he always made this argument that he was an Australian, he wanted Australia to sort out his passport and where was Australia standing for him? It was a kind of strange thing because he burst into prominence from nowhere for most of us, and yet he was an Australian, he wanted Australian help, and here we later after he are only a couple of later after he would be going, "Julia Gillard, where later after he would be "Julia Gillard, where are you
for me "Julia Gillard, where for me and hello, Bob Carr, where are you?" for me and hello, Bob where are you?" And now we've got an Australian got an Australian political party. Talk about a rear arrival inSpeaking of arrival, we're joined by second candidate on candidate on the WikiLeaks Senate Dr Alison Broinowski, former writer, and public servant. She is from the ANU. Dro Broinowski welcome to 'The Drum'Thank you.Can you tell us why you have decided to run for the Senate as a WikiLeaks candidate?It was as much as a surprise to me as the rest of the Australian population. He had been following the whole thing for a number of years, ever since Julian burst onto the scene and thanks a lot from people like David Manne and others who followed it and filled us in on the background. I began talking about it in groups and saying, "Look, this guy is onto something." We for a long time and I knew this as a diplomat, have been lied to by our governments, and I say governments because this is governments all around the world, and that might not seem serious if you don't have anything to hide or whatever, but on the other hand there is a very fundamental principle behind it because governments who lie to their people and then object strongly when people reveal their lies, are hypocritical, and therefore if that kind of climate exists in Australian politics, it needs to have the doors thrown ep on the light shone in and a bit of openness injected into it, and say, when you
that was what attracted me to say, when you think of them are not radical. It just goes back to the fundamental principles of most democracies, and what he is saying, I think, is we need what he calls a climate shift. In other words, open it up again, have a new, a breath of fresh air, not an irresponsible one, not a radical one sort of burn everything down kind of
revolution, by no means. I think but more of something going back to the feeling we had in 1927 when we got - 1972 when we got rid of a whole lot of old stuff and I think we need to get rid of a whole lot of old stuff now. Can I ask a question? To get a spot as a senator, you have to often involve yourself in all sorts of preference deals, that's how usually senators who are not involved in the mainstream parties to get themselves up. Is there any party you will rule out doing tricky deals with to get that spot?We are a very young party, as you know. The first time I discussed that matter with my colleagues we all said we objected to the idea in principle of committing our selves to leaks because - sorry, to deals because those are the very thing s that evoke ideas of secrecy and doing back room arrangements, that the whole party is opposed to, and as far as I know, unless people have made decisions that I haven't heard about, there are no commitments to preferences at this stage, and I think if there were any, we would be very upfront with the reasons for making them.Speaking of making deals, one of the things that Julian Assange said today was that one of the ways he differentiated himself from the Greens was that they make too many deals and he thinks they make too many compromises. How would you differentiate yourself from the Greens party who have been quite influential?I think that's one of the disappointments people have had with the Greens. Going right back, when you remember there was a deal done with the Howard Government which shocked a lot of people, I think, but the Greens, of course, as they've become bigger and have become a very influential party, no doubt felt that they had to do that, and there are people in the Greens, individuals in the Greens who we admire enormously and we're grateful for their work, and they've supported Julian himself personally again and Julian and again with questions in Julian himself personally and again with Parliament, so it's not a matter of the WikiLeaks party being Parliament, so it's not being an enemy of the Greens at all. We're on the same or a similar page, but we similar page, but we just are new and fresh and some people are feeling at this election that they want to say to the Greens, "Hey, you're not living up to some of the things that we think are important." What are some of the things on your political platform that is not about transparency?Well, it's transparency, accountability and justice and when you think of those things together, you realise that none of them can exist without the other. It is a neat little formulation and it makes sense of everything that Julian has stood for because he says government can't govern in the name of the people if it keeps the people in the dark. So that's your transparency. Accountability - government can't do things in the people's name if the people don't know what they're doing and can't hold them accountable for it. And justice - well, of course that flows from the other two, and injustice is being committed by the Australian Government both internally and externally. We are breaching our international obligations in a very a egregious way and that's something we feel strongly about, so those things spill over from those fundamental principles, particularly into refugee issues and into climate change, as you've said, and we're not trying to bite off everything because we're very small, but those are the things that we've chosen to focus on particularly. Alison, is it the case that the Greens kind of chipped off the Labor's left base and you want to chip off the Greens' best base? Do you see yourself as positioning yourself as left of the Greens?I wouldn't put it that way at all. Some viewers may be surprised to see a grandmother like me in a Senate contest - I'm surprised myself. I don't think one ought to have too many a sumgtss about left or right. What - assumptions about left or right. What the party is doing is an idea of Julian's which is scientific journalism and we're bringing that to our approach to politics which is we are evidence-based and we're not mucking around with the facts and we're not massaging the facts to fit some policy or claiming something is true when it's not. We will find evidence where we can and we will use that evidence to support policy. So, for instance, we don't go overboard and say, "Right, close down every coalmine tomorrow," things like that. We understand the impact on communities and how important that is is, and we don't want to frighten all the business horses whose earnings are important for the wellbeing of all Australians, let alone employment. So these kinds of panicky policies or panicky-inducing policies are not what we're on about.
Alison, just interested, how is Julian going to fit into the campaign and how will you - where is the flying wedge? How will this operate if he is overseas and how do you create - are you going to get a slogan?Oh, we've got that.Transparency, accountability and justice. But you've got to bring in the machinery to make it work. Will he be leading that? How do you think it will work?Well, at the moment it is difficult for him to do that. He has been the sort of what you might call the brains trust, the inspiration, the founder, the sort of leader of the whole idea, but there is a team of people in Australia who have just sort of popped up out of the woodwork, more or less, one of whom is his father John Shipton who has done a lot of the work that your ee describing and is the convenor of the party, in fact, and so he is doing that. Then we have a team in each capital and we're delighted with the support that we've got from unexpected support, I must say.Thank you so much for coming in and joining us on 'The Drum'My pleasure.Dr Alison Broinowski. Coming up next, the inside story of the decline of Fairfax. This program is not captioned.

Next, a story of old and new media, fathers and sons and brutal business dealings. A new book released this week traces the decline of Fairfax Media.
The the decline of Fairfax Morning The publisher of the 'Sydney
Morning Herald', 'The Age' and the Australian 'Financial Review'. The author Fairfax - Packer, Murdoch and the Ultimate Review'. The author of 'Killing the Ultimate Revenge' is 'The Drum' panelist Pamela Williams, also editor at large of the Australian 'Financial Review', so still in the tent.Now, I must say the image of James Packer and Lachlan Murdoch at your book launch broadly grinning about the decline of Fairfax was an arresting one. Is this becauseArresting because they were gripping and they were there. They are not out and about in the crowd scene very often. A lot of people were invited. They were invited and I thought, "Will they show up at the last minute?" Packer in particular I think is quite a volatile individual and I had sort of thought he had gotten his copy of the book a day and a half before, three weeks after the 'Financial Review' got its copy for the extracts, I might add, and Murdoch had gotten his on the Sunday, and I thought, "What will happen here? Are they going to sort of - they said they would come and I thought will they show up?. I had no idea what they would do when they got there, have to sit, you know, special chair or something have to sit, you know, but they sort have to sit, sort of wandered-and-all of a sudden the cameras were there and they were obviously extremely pleased with themselves and happy to promote the idea that they had triumphed.Tell us about this triumph. Two young men who have inherited from their
billionaire fathers a deep hatred of Fairfax and a desire to commercialally destroy them and they have played a pivotal role in the decline of Fairfax. Can you tell us about that?They have. They've played a pivotal role because of the actions they've taken around the outside of Fairfax, but I hasten to add that by the truth by the end of it it's trance Jenks because Fairfax was at the heart of it and they could have operated in a different way and could have taken different steps and strategies and at the end of the day it could have been different. We all know that media is in trouble, Fairfax had about 60% of its revenue - of its advertising revenue, 60% of that was classified and that'scy little skinny, single-line ads, dripping with money. Costs you nothing to put it on a page, not like a display ad where you had a beg photo of somebody in a frock and you want the frock and it's a quarter of the page. The return on that is not as much of as the classified. So that was the rivers of gold and really at the heart of it Fairfax didn't protect it, but what happened from the outside of Fairfax which is what I wanted to document once I understood what had happened was that as younger men, both James Packer and Lachlan Murdoch had in fact gone and invested in three companies that happened to be the three that tushed out to be the number one winners in classified advertising - in jobs, in cars and in property, and it was a remarkable thing because there were hundreds and hundreds of those companies going back into the late 1990s. Then there was - they were all start-ups in garages or somebody's couch or a dream in a car driving somewhere and everybody going to set up something, but amongst those, some of them quickly proved to be quite good and then most of them flamed out in the.com boom and some of them didn't and these three didn't. The most interesting one to me was not the James Packer investment in Seek. That was in 2003. By that time, those guys,s Bassett fwrors and their partner Matthew Rod man had had five years of building the business when James Packer went to invest. He was - I think it's very clear, a man seized with vengeance against Fairfax. He was born into it, bred into him, the family had watched the father Kerry Packer go through the goanna, watch Fairfax attack them. They simply, as this gymnastics thing in Australia where a small pond and when you are a figure fish as these media dynasties are, they fight very hard. These guys stand on the fences and swing.And I think that's what's interesting about this story as well, because we said it's about these two then and their hate and trying to get revention on Fairfax and then also mismanagement at revention on Fairfax and Fairfax level and also Fairfax level and in your book, you highlight the difference between the you between the approaches, Fairfax between was not between the approaches, was not as aggressive, between the approaches, Fairfax was not as aggressive, did not follow them up with daily follow them up with daily phone follow them up with calls like James Packer did, or that intuitive intint of Lachlan Murdoch that this is where the future was? Is that the nutshell?Yes, I think Fairfax didn't focus on defending its classified advertising. It set up search engines for what you want to do today, what's going on at the movies? And it didn't defend its classified in the most aggressive way but countered by these incredibly aggressive young sky beyonds of the dynasties who were delighted to get into stocks that were attacking against Fairfax and winning against Fairfax's classified. But piled into these things but piled in at a very early point, after Fairfax had either said no. Fairfax declined to rescue realestate.com when it was 20 cents a share. Three weeks from blowing up. Called in the auditors. The chairman said, "We were nearly on the beach." They went to Lachlan Murdoch, somebody knew him from the art gallery. He said, "I will invest and that company is now worth $4 billion." Fascinating tale. 'Killing O'Grady has made a fearful admission to O'Grady has performance-enhancing drug ahead of the Tour de France 15 years ago. The ahead of the Tour de France years ago. The 17-time Tour rider retired days ago after what had been considered a stellar career. what had been considered stellar career. O'Grady has come clean after being named in a French Senate inquiry into doping in sport. The Australian Olympic Committee has called on him to resign from his position within the Athletes' Commission.O'Grady says he took the banned blood booster, EPO, only once. What do you make of this, Steve?I suppose give him credit for coming clean, so to speak, but cycling has lost its innocence nowLost its innocence a while ago.Not a surprise. Another one bites the dust.That's right. It's cheating . Now they're all admitting to cheating. We all thought sport was such a glorious thing. We knew it wasn't somewhere here and there on the edges with the odd person, but particularly with cycling, as Patricia says, another one bites the dust. Another week, another round of injecting something or other.How do you respond to the comments from his whole team orca GreenEDGE. Look, that happened, it's bad. However, he has always been a man of integrity and we shouldn't let this tarnish his whole career." Is that too early to be stating itI think it is too early. You have to give people the benefit of the doubt however, with Lance Armstrong, the story started very small and it ended up in a very different place and shocking to everybody. I'm not suggesting that that is in this case at all, but it's kind of early days. Snee said it's only once that he has done it at this stage. So it's all about whether more is revealed through that Senate inquiry.That's right.We are at the stage where we are expecting more and more and more to come out through France, and not through us. Do you think it's a case of his entire career is tarnished, Steve Definitely. Where there is smoke, there is fire. He might say he's done it once, but...More confessions from other cyclists ahead?I think guys have to get over this cycling thing. Drug boosters and this and that.And on that note, that is all for 'The Drum' tonight. Thanks so much to our panel - Steve Pennells, Pamela Williams and Patricia Karvelas. You can check out 'The Drum' online at abc.net.au/thedrum. We will be back again the same time tomorrow night. Hope to see you then.

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