TRUE OPINION: Insiders of Spin, Masters of Nothing

TRUE OPINION: When do all these corporate journalists go from so-called ‘insiders’ to asinine spin merchants, wonders satirist Kieran Butler.

If you want a brief snapshot of the tawdry state of Australian government, mainstream Australian political commentary, and the shit show that is the backward nation state that spawns them, you can’t go past the intellectual miscarriage I like to call Spinsiders.

Tory lickspittle, David Speers, hosts a procession of similarly compromised opinionistas each week. After playing a few clips of his beloved Scott Morrison ranting and raving in Parliament or telling a journalist to go f*ck themselves at a press conference, Speers settles into some conversation that attempts to normalise the travesty of Australian politics.

His guests then chip in with some half-arsed analysis by repeating the same thing as the guests from the previous week, blithely accepting the status quo on the grounds that anything that amounts to genuine criticism of the incumbent government would quarantine them from ever again receiving an ABC pay cheque.

Before you can load a shotgun and blow what remains of your functioning cerebral cortex onto the ceiling, Speers stands up to ask questions of a giant TV screen. It doesn’t really matter who is on the screen, or what answers they provide, because the aim of the exercise is to point out that Speers is clever as f*ck – and the ALP are just no good.

Standing up for 10 minutes is hard work, so it is soon time to sit down and bask in the genius of David Speers – just for a change of pace. This week, Patricia Karvelas is bang up for it. You can catch Ms Karvelas on ABC TV and radio for a sum total of two and half hours each weekday, where she promises “to give you original insight into the world you live in”.

I know it is just 8 cents a day, but by the time you factor in a cheeky Sunday gig on Spinsiders, that’s nearly 50 cents a week, so I reckon I have a solid legal argument to ask for my money back.

There is nothing original about the topics Karvelas covers each day; the mindless banter she engages in with her politician mates, her line of questioning or consistently pointing out that the ALP are just no good. The aforementioned David Speers has got this covered, and Leigh Sales has been doing it for 20 years.

Back at Spinsiders, token Murdoch-lackey-for-the-week, ‘Professor’ Peter van Onselen, proves why his analysis is completely indispensable by pointing out that the current Federal Opposition is employing a small target strategy while the government lurches from one predictable cluster fuck to the next.

This prompts Karvelas to blurt out that this close to an election Australia deserves an alternative government that stands for something with respect to climate change targets – in a tone that suggests she believes both she and the whole of Australia is entitled to this as a bare minimum.

TRUE OPINION: Would Scott Morrison let Christian Porter go debating with his daughters?

Australia will always be the only country on the face of the earth that voted to repeal an emissions trading scheme that put a price on carbon. Eight years ago. Australia deserves f*ck all.

Furthermore, Australia has never elected a government because it stands for something. Ever. Australia elects governments because they repeat idiotic slogans or justify racism. Doing both at once is worth triple points. The only other tried and tested method for getting elected is to wait until everyone is heartily sick and tired of the crap dished out by whomever is currently running the joint.

As the past weekend’s Spinsiders drew to a predictable close, dominated by the “pantomime” (Prof. Van Onselen stating the bleeding obvious like a deadset champ!) of ‘net zero by 2050’ negotiations within the government, those assembled, including perennial shape-shifter Nikki Savva, quickly say they were horrified that the LNP shit-canned 120 years of Parliamentary precedent during the week to protect that wily alleged rapist and lover of secret donations, Christian Porter.

What? 120 years of Parliamentary precedent? Gone, just like that? That’s longer than Melbourne waited to win another AFL premiership. You’re bringing this up in the last two minutes? Surely that deserved more attention than the predictable, long-winded admission Australia will have to turn up to another climate change conference with the barest of minimums?

The justification for this was a seemingly rhetorical question: “Do you think voters are paying attention to this type of thing?” Not if you only bother to talk about it for two f*cking minutes, you dropkicks!

Recently, Tory stooges Bridget McKenzie and John Barilaro have been quoting the movie Fight Club like Scott Morrison at a Croods convention.

Similarly, Patricia Karvelas might like to get through her solid cranium that like everything in Australian politics: “The first rule of Spinsiders is ‘Don’t stand for anything!’”

About Kieran Butler 33 Articles
Kieran Butler is a comedian, musician and satirist. He is best known in Australia for his pop-parody musical "Ben Cousins: a rock opera" and has received critical acclaim at the Edinburgh Fringe for "Che Guevara on the Fringe" (**** The Scotsman) and his sold-out "Australia is Fucked" trilogy. More info at

1 Comment

  1. Surely there is someone within the media that isn’t such a liberal or Labor apologist to once host Insiders.??..

    Damn I miss Mr Cassidy…

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