The Mitchell Memoirs: former editor launches his book, and Malcolm feels the love

by admin on July 14th, 2018

filed under 苏州美甲美睫培训学校

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull launches Making Headlines. Photo: Anthony Johnson The former cub reporter, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, fondly recalling his earlier career among newspapers. Photo: Anthony Johnson

PM Turnbull with former Wallaby captain John Eales, among others, at the book launch. Photo: Anthony Johnson

Newspapers, said the Prime Minister, are a “wonderful romantic business”.

There was romance, and the occasional flare of passion, in the room when Malcolm Turnbull launched the memoir of the former long-time editor-in-chief of The Australian, Chris Mitchell.

Turnbull spoke dewily of his days as a cub reporter, writing up stories in the very room in which we sat – the wood-panelled library of NSW State Parliament.

Piers Akerman sprayed bon mots. Dick Smith seemed to be having fun, but then he always does. Jim Spigelman smiled benignly. Nikki Savva wore a smashing jumper, and well, everybody loved John Eales, not least the Prime Minister, who chatted with him about the superior athleticism of AFL.

Eales, quite famously a rugby man, was too polite to demur.

Mitchell’s book is called Making Headlines, and it has already done a bit of that, throwing out gobbets of flesh to the beltway crowd in the form of anecdotes about Prime Ministerial bottoms and the (allegedly) prodigious hangovers of the young Joe Hockey.

Mitchell, gruff of manner and bristly of hair, has been widely criticised for using his book to betray the private conversations of former Prime Ministers.

For them, sadly, Mitchell’s editorial eye is less romantic than it is gimlet.

He recounts the famous tale of how Kevin Rudd allowed him to report the time George W Bush allegedly asked him: “What is the G20?”

Readers also learn that Tony Abbott hilariously mimicked the walk of Julia Gillard at a dinner party, during a discussion about her backside.

The irony of Abbott mimicking another person’s walk is only eclipsed by the fact that The Australian maintained a strong line during the Gillard years that sexism played no part in criticisms of her.

One can only hope that all political bums are mocked equally at future News Corp knees-ups.

It being a heavily News Corp crowd, Rupert was mentioned often and in the usual Madonna-like fashion – just like the pop star, he needs only one name.

For him, there was plenty of love.

Mitchell himself spoke lovingly about newspapers, and his passion for them is well-known, particularly to former News CEO Kim Williams, whose spectacularly unsuccessful attempt to enforce a new digital strategy was brought to an end when Mitchell phoned Rupert.

As the guests nibbled cucumber sandwiches, the Prime Minister bounced on his heels towards the exit.

It would be cynical to say that a nice friendly mingle with News Corp grandees does a Prime Minister no harm, and like the Prime Minister, this journalist is a romantic.

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