In an interview about the current Australian political situation on The Bolt Report (Channel 10, 21 August 2011) Andrew Bolt asks the Leader Of the Federal Opposition, Tony Abbott, about his time as executive director Of Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy.
Is there today, Andrew Bolt asks, the same disconnect between the media and the elites on the one hand and the people on the other.
(ACM of course takes no position on the proposed tax on carbon dioxide or on the theory of anthropogenic global warming – both are outside our remit.)
Andrew Bolt was of course referring to the fact that during the 1999 Republican referendum and indeed during the years during which constitutional change to a (politicians') republic was an issue, all of the mainstream media, capital city newspapers and public and commercial television networks were supportive of change, often to the extent of misusing the news to campaign for change to some sort of republic.
As the independent and eminent authority, the former British editor Lord Deedes observed in the London Daily Telegraph on 8 November, 1999:
"I have rarely attended elections in any country, certainly not a democratic one, in which the newspapers have displayed more shameless bias. One and all, they determined that Australians should have a republic and they used every device towards that end."
It was only on some commercial radio programs that the No case received reasonable and balanced access, with a few commentators actually calling for a No vote.