Happy new year (and a sneaky personal plug)

Published: Sun, 01/02/22

From the Friendly Caves of Pixie Hollow.

G'day mate, happy new year. Welcome to 2022.

It's a bit weird, granted. Your new year starts on your birthday, but hey! If people are going to spend loads of cash on fireworks and I can enjoy them too, who am I to complain.

May your year this year be one of sparkling, graceful joy and light.

I'm going against all the rules today and I'm going to use my "work" list for a sneaky personal plug. (Don't tell my boss, she can be a bit of a hard see-you-next-tues kinda person.)

The plug is this:

On 3 February - Ronald Ryan's death day - I'm releasing a six-part podcast titled Ultimatum.

Nobody knows this story, because nobody's told it.

The story is of a time, in early February 1967, when the editor-in-chief at The Age, Graham Perkin, attempted to bribe the Premier of Victoria (Henry Bolte, then not yet Sir Henry Bolte). It was an election year. The Liberal Party had been in power for a very long time. The social mores had shifted. 

And Ronald Ryan's life was about to expire by hanging.

Perkin, the father of social justice journalism in Australia, single-handedly changed the face of journalism. His newspaper was the most influential in the country.

So when Melbourne was in the throes of the biggest protests it had ever seen (unmatched until 2021, actually) with hundreds of thousands of people marching to try to save Ryan's life, Perkin went up to Bolte's office.

He offered support for the Liberal Party into the future exchange for Ronald Ryan's life.

Bolte looked at him sharply.

'Well that changes the question,' he replied.

'Question?' Perkin was confused.

'The question Perkin!' barked Bolte. 'The question is not "do I or do I not allow Ronald Ryan to live". The question is "do you run the state, or does the government run the state?".'

The series, Ultimatum, was originally written as a screenplay. Then a radio play.

But after four years, I have decided that enough is enough and I've simply narrated the story and am releasing it to the world.

Media and paying supporters get access early (so if you want to become a supporter of my work, go to Gumroad or Ko-fi to throw some coins into my hat).

The rest of the world? 3 February.

The day that Ronald Ryan met his maker.

Is that a spoiler? Hmmm. Well, you'll just have to listen to find out.

And we'll go back to what is going to become Regular Programming tomorrow morning.

xx Leticia "yes she really is an author" Mooney