The exchange concerns the late Peter Roebuck -- an an interesting enough topic, but nowhere near as revealing as Baum's reference in passing to Andrew Bolt:
I don’t know who was looking over whose shoulder, you or Bolt, but I am mystified by the allusion to priests. Roebuck was not a priest. End of story.
Henderson responds thus:
I don’t understand your reference to Andrew Bolt – who, as I understand, is one of The Age’s obsessions, judging by your paper’s coverage of him. I rarely speak to Bolt and have never discussed Roebuck with him.
Now think about that exchange for a second. Here we have a fellow who covers a field of human activity that should be immune to political interpretation, yet some paranoid fancy has evidently led him to see Bolt's insidious finger at work, stirring up trouble with catholic malevolence.
You can understand why Fairfax political writers detest Bolt, who has so often highlighted their sycophancy and many other shortcomings. And it requires no intelligence to understand why the Greens publicists who pass themselves off as environmental reporters loathe someone who exposes so many of their untruths, instances of wilful blindness and arrogantly naked biases.
But a sports writer! If Boltaphobia is now colouring Fairfax's reports of sportsmen hitting, kicking and punching things, the sooner Palmer stops with the jokes and starts buying stock the better. Going by his Lateline performance, the magnate could have a lot of fun assuring Baum and others that neither Bolt nor Rupert Murdoch is mounting sly crusades to see the flick pass re-introduced, the cricket pitch metricated or the imposition of automatic penalty strokes on Sudanese golfers. Not that Baum would believe him.
What ails Fairfax, it must akin to syphilis. Once in the blood, there is just no stopping it from ravaging the brain.