was sitting at my favourite table outside the café, contemplating
the fate of the Balkans and the state of civilisation the end of the
20th century, when the lynch mob came down the lane on their way to
was a flaming cross at their head and they were led by some of the boys
and girls from News Limited. TV cameramen were running in front, egging
the mob on, and a couple of wild-eyed women held aloft a thick rope
with a noose. Many people were waving copies of the Daily Telegraph
and even the Sydney Morning Herald.
the pedophile! Kill the pedophile!" they chanted.
stood up and shuffled towards the safety of the café door. A
fat leering journalist lurched past. Was that a pistol in his pocket
or was he just having a good time?
going on?" I asked a weedy man in a cheap tracksuit.
going to burn out the pedophile. Are you with us?" he muttered.
thanks, I've helped put away a few criminals, but when they've done
their time, they've done their time."
had eyes like a dead shark, but suddenly there was a flicker in them.
He backed away and turned to the mob.
one of Lewthwaite's poofter mates!" he screamed, "Skin the
possum! Skin the possum!"
then, Joadja stepped out of the cafe with the baseball bat she keeps
behind the bar. The crowd turned away and the weedy man decided he had
better move on or he might miss the fun. We were watching them stream
around the corner into Sydney Street when Kerry Chikarovski and Bob
Carr came past.
be careful, that's a pretty ugly mob" I said.
must follow them, we're their leaders", Bob muttered, and they
that the bloke from Media Watch bringing up the rear? You know, the
bland one who took over from Stuart Littlemore. Was that him?"
couldn't be sure, It had all happened too fast. We went inside and I
knocked down a cider and asked for another. It's no longer politically
correct to shoot the Jews and lynch the blacks, so the trash have to
keep their hand in by stoning pedophiles, or former pedophiles.
is it about that mob from the Telegraph?" I asked, thinking aloud.
if you work on the Terror you have to find -- or invent, if necessary
-- somebody who's lower than yourself to flog. If there's one thing
those boys and girls like doing it's administering a good beating to
somebody who's on the ground. It helps them purge the terrible guilt
and tension that comes with the job. I reckon it's a bit like when pederasts
go to gaol and the axe murderers beat them and rape them", Jo said.
started to rain outside so I settled in at the bar and read the papers.
The rich were getting richer and more arrogant and the poor were getting
poorer and going crazy and the punishment freaks were getting their
way everywhere. Bob Carr was building three new prisons and hiring 700
more cops and there were 900 people on death row in the Philippines
-- which has just reinstated capital punishment -- and thousands in
was on my way to getting pissed and moody but Joadja dragged me down
to the Palace Academy to see Robert Altman's latest flick -- Cookie's
Fortune -- which cheered me up no end.
in Whispers from the mean streets
-- Best of 1999