According to a report from the Washington Post's Sarah Ellison and Josh Dawsey, any suggestion that the son of billionaire Rupert Murdoch will rein in the far-right extremism of the family's media empire went up in a puff of smoke during a recent speech -- describes as "fiery" -- in Sydney, Australia last week.
The report notes that Lachlan Murdoch has become the heir-apparent after having stepped aside from family dealings in 2005, with the report stating, "even as he made his way back to family business, nearly a decade later, and rose again through the ranks, the image remained of a passive Gen-Xer who kept his politics quiet and his ambitions subservient to those of the swaggering conservative billionaire dad who aspired to influence power at the highest global levels."
That image can now be set aside with the WaPo noting his speech "could have fit in seamlessly with the lineup of right-wing commentary served up every night by Fox News’s prime time opinion hosts."
Speaking at the event to mark the launch of the Centre for the Australian Way of Life at the right-leaning Institute of Public Affairs, Murdoch told the assembled crowd, "How can we expect people to defend the values, interests and sovereignty of this nation if we teach our children only our faults and none of our virtues," which echoes the talking points repeated nightly by Fox News host Tucker Carlson in the U.S.
Murdoch also complained about government shut-downs during the still ongoing Covid pandemic, complaining to the crowd about both the U.S. and Australia, stating, "Accepting government interventions and absorbing record financial hardships were literally unquestionable burdens at risk of fines or imprisonment. All done in the blink of an eye with few checks and balances, and we are still counting the costs. Alcoholism, domestic abuse, suicide also spikes during the pandemic. Why did we accept this? It must never happen again.”
WaPo's Ellison and Dawsey added, "In classic Fox style, he devoted significant time to bashing rival media outlets, specifically the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 'To listen to our national broadcaster or much of the media elite is to hear about a uniquely racist, selfish, slavish and monochromatic country. The reality could not be more different.,' Murdoch said."
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