There’s some sort of international student party going on near our house tonight. The partygoers all sang ‘Happy Birthday’ just now and I couldn’t make out the name of the birthday boy/girl, but I think it was ‘Marimba’ which I (until now) associated with a low-slung Mexican interpretation of the xylophone. They’re playing lots of Marimba-laden music, maybe as some sort of literal tribute to the birthday girl (I’d assume Marimba would be a girls’ name?)

All this fuss about Alan Jones in the media this week has been ridiculous. He said a ludicrous thing at a Liberal Party dinner about Julia Gillard’s recently deceased father and now the magnifying glass is so strongly focussed on him that you can’t help but pay attention, even as a casual observer. He’s a controversial radio personality for God’s sake; he lives for this sort of notoriety. Rest assured, once the hoopla dies down, the majority of the sponsors that have dumped him in the last week will be straight back on the Jonesy bandwagon (in as covert a manner as humanly possible)

Why? They know how much reach this man has. It’s money well spent in their opinions.

Jones has always made it abundantly clear that he is an ardent supporter of the Australian Liberal party, having in the past written speeches for Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser and also having run for office several times (always unsuccessfully) in various electorates in N.S.W. He takes great pleasure in taking pot-shots at the Gillard Government, having previously stated that Gillard should be, “put in a chaff bag and thrown into the sea”.

I think the public reaction has been so much more vitriolic this time around because Jones targeted family, and that’s something that we evidently hold sacred. It’s off limits, and rightly so. Politics is one of those rare occupations whereby your performance is assessed and discussed non-stop every day by a largely ignorant general public, and radio hosts such as Jones have the followers and the platform to lead the public one way or another as is their whim. Go after the (wo)man, sure, but leave the innocents out of it.

“His member was this big.”

While doing some research tonight (I ain’t spouting no spurious facts, yo!) about Jones, I discovered that he was once accused of ‘cottaging’ (a British gay slang term referring to anonymous sex between men in a public lavatory) while on a trip to London to visit his friend, the now deceased Rene Rivkin. Indeed, there have been a number of rumours over the years about Jones’ sexuality, including some questions over his behaviour with male students while he was a schoolmaster at Kings School in NSW (he was later asked to leave), including this from one of his ex-students (as written in the unauthorised biography ‘Jonestown’, published 2006).

Scott Walker, another constant visitor, began to feel violated. “If you had muscle strain he would insist on strapping your legs. He would take you into the shower and tell you to take your clothes off. I was shattered with awkwardness. It was weird and uncomfortable and seemed voyeuristic.”

Hmmm… an overtly conservative figure who’s also a closeted homosexual. That must be a fierce internal struggle! Perhaps Jones is subconsciously trying to punish Gillard for opposing the recent gay marriage bill?

/end communication