The long fuse of Assange & Folau – why the woke hecklers veto could seed toxic rebellion


I believe one could argue that the Pride Parade Board, who turned last years pride parade of 30 000 attendees into a mere 2000 this year with their woke exclusion ideology caused far more damage to the rainbow community than an Instagram post by a rugby player.

I could argue that, I can’t of course because even the mere suggestion I have made in the above paragraph is enough to trigger woke activists and my comparison quickly gets labeled  heteronormative patriarchal hate speech.

Likewise any defence of Assange gets shouted down by Fourth Wave Feminists, middle class Guardian readers and #MeToo activists who decry him as a rapist and blame his leaks for sinking Hillary Clinton.

The danger our comrades create with their woke hecklers veto is that they are creating long fuses which can easily become toxic rebellion.

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Part one of attacking Folau is that he breached his contract, which turns out to be a lie…

Rugby Australia bungled Israel Folau contract – report

Rugby Australia bungled its contract negotiations with Israel Folau by failing to insert social media restraints, according to a Sydney media report.

The Daily Telegraph says that Folau, who inked a $4m four year deal last year, refused to have the additional clauses retrospectively inserted into the contract.

If this is so, it will place added pressure on RA’s Kiwi CEO Raelene Castle, whose tenure has turned into a giant headache because of Folau’s inflammatory social media posts.

…once you remove the ‘blame the contract’ argument you always get ‘free speech doesn’t mean no consequences’ argument. Of course freedom of speech is not freedom of consequence – buuuuuuuuut a liberal progressive democracy worth its salt can tolerate speech that is offensive because by burying it we make it far more toxic.

Folau is guilty of stupid speech, false speech, ridiculous speech, idiotic speech, offensive speech – but not hate speech because that’s a very specific type of speech that we wilfully agree should be banned. If we can not debate the mammoth stupidity of Folau’s speech we allow it to fester unchallenged.

Likewise, Assange openly attacked state secrets, he was far from perfect but he allowed the world to see the despicable war crimes committed for so called freedom and democracy.

If Folau fights his exclusion (turns out he will) and Assange fights his extradition, you are talking legal process that will stretch for months and months.

In Folau’s case, we already have the Bishop promising ‘war’ and with Assange, you have a country on the edge with Brexit about to crush free speech and capitulate to the US.

Each are fuses that will take months to burn and during that burning, anger and resentment can flare up dangerously.

As we step into the darkness of a future where identity politics takes on a far more dangerous mutation, we must keep people in the town square, not the poisonous alleyways.

I think Folau’s comments were disgracefully stupid, but I don’t believe he should have been sacked because the long fuse now lit as he battles for legal reinstatement will produce far more heat than light.

I think Assange is a victim of geopolitics and Western Governments fearing transparency of their crimes, and that pretending to claim this is about a Swedish rape case is intellectually bankrupt. His trial set against a country divided over Brexit could produce all sorts of dangerous political mutations.

Once angry people are given a righteous grievance and a martyr to symbolise that grievance, anything is possible.






  1. “Folau is guilty of stupid speech, false speech, ridiculous speech, idiotic speech, offensive speech – ”
    That’s pretty offensive rhetoric directed against adherents to religions that teach what he said to be true. Which as far as I can see must apply to more than half the people on the planet. Almost every religion in it’s original teachings will hold a version of this position.
    I was wondering just how Falau’s contract could have been worded to make expressing his religious beliefs in breach. It is no surprise to learn that it did not.
    This is going to cost the Australian Rugby union a lot of money.
    Has anyone taken any polls on what people think should be done with Julian Assange? It seems to me unlikely that there is but a small minority in any group apart from politicians who think anything but that he should be set free immediately, subject only to clearing up what happened in Sweden .

    • On the one hand the woke left claim authority over sex acts being free from consequences, so sex with out condoms is immoral and may cause physical harm )ok that’s one interpretation). On the other hand they say that criticizing religiously unclean sex acts between more than a married couple should not be free from consequences. No one should be taking relationship advice from any of them less you want to walk this tight rope.

      • I don’t believe in any of it Sam, but lots of people do. In fact I don’t think there will ever be peace on earth while people adhere to insupportable and incompatible religious beliefs. We have to take responsibility for judging what is right and wrong , what is fair and what is unfair, what matters and what does not. Referring to texts written thousands of years ago by good and bad individuals trying to explain the world to a largely illiterate ignorant mass as the ultimate guidance for life now, with all the knowledge that has been learned and distributed since is a constant source of mystery to me. We are a strange intelligent species that constantly violates it’s intelligence.
        D J S

        • DJS I share your concern about incompatible beliefs, scriptural and otherwise. Thing is, is this part of the human condition, we all after all have to live within a belief system that makes sense of our world? We all grow within language, culture and a present reality that gains it’s currency from the compounded experience of the past. We cannot escape that, only adjust it within that frame of reference. I read some Jung on symbolism…he pointed out our true nature as part of past, present and future. Scary stuff.

          • And the talent to do even the most basic of physical or interlectul pursuits are not distributed evenly. History has shown that complex solutions is never the best method. Religion and war are no different. Complexity = death.

          • Religion certainly accesses something deep in our nature Nick , or it could not be so influential. It has certainly pervaded/dominated our past, present and undoubtably our foreseeable future.
            My partner and I visited Notre Dame last November. It was striking what a project this must have been 800 years ago. The wealth and power wielded by the church at that time attested to. And continued to be starkly revealed in the positions and opulence o fanchient monasteries as we traveled by train through Germany Austria, Italy and Greece.
            D J S

            • I was astounded by the ubiquity of religious symbols every where
              In Salzburg suffering flesh coloured plaster Jesuses with gory wounds and realistic blood seemed to be strung up on every lamp post(not really the lamp posts, but in your face everywhere. )
              In Vienna I got sick of the cathedrals within a stones throw of each other with wealthy patrons rewarded and recognised by having their faces transposed on the bodies of saints.
              I started to feel crushed by the symbols of power and authority and headed for the nearest smoky bar where unrepentant smokers lit up .You were forced to communicate with people from the sheer proximity…tiny spaces…even though your eyes watered from second hand smoke

  2. “once you remove the ‘blame the contract’ argument you always get ‘free speech doesn’t mean no consequences’ argument. Of course freedom of speech is not freedom of consequence – buuuuuuuuut a liberal progressive democracy worth its salt can tolerate speech that is offensive because by burying it we make it far more toxic”

    You seriously want racism, sexism, islamophobia, bigotry “tolerated” Martyn?

    Do you recsll an old saying, ” all that is required for evil to prevail is for good people to do nothing”

    If you want to tolerate stuff, heres my question, WHAT IS THE POINT OF THE DAILY BLOG???

    In case youve missed it every blogpost here is critical of neoliberalism, racism, sexism, inequality, etc

    Now youre saying we should tolerate all that crap

    Youre saying we should tolerate the Hoskings and Garners and Hamish Prices of the world

    What the hell *ARE* you saying???

    By the way hate speech , the really *BAD* hate speech is already buried. You have to dig down on 4chan, 8chan, and other dark web far right web sites. If yiu think hate speech is open on trademe messageboards or whaleoil, you are utterly deluded

    • Bomber isn’t saying we should tolerate it, we shouldn’t – we should oppose views that are against what we believe.
      However, to suppress views we don’t like and not allow them to be expressed is a very dangerous step.
      You’d be surprised how quickly things change and who is in power switches – then the suppression you advocated for comes back and bites you big time as your favourite bloggers and commentators are sidelined.
      Suck it up, argue back but don’t suppress.

    • Big difference between ‘tolerating’ and ‘suppressing’. Sounds to me like you’re advocating for suppression. Do you want to live in a totalitarian state? Somehow I doubt it.

      And yes Hoskings, Garner, and Price must be tolerated. You clearly don’t agree with their views, and personally neither to I. However I will defend their right to freedom of expression, tooth and nail, regardless of how abhorrent I find said views. Why? Because they’re all entitled to the same rights and freedoms that I am entitled to. Do you get it now?

    • Golriz and Action Station are trying to shut down free speech. The latter group are funded by Omidyar. Has Golriz met with him, a man who has destabilized countries all over the world through astroturf organizations?

      That’s a pretty good point or set of questions to raise…

  3. MJolnir, ever heard the term “hoisted on your own petard?” That’s what Folau has done, seems to me if you banned his freedom to say what he has said you might never know what the public response would be. Have you no faith in that response? Seems the public have roundly condemned what Folau said and he is suffering consequences. Yay for free speech, seems to work.

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