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The man with the golden tonsils

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As an introduction for my overseas friends, John Laws retired somewhat ingloriously a couple of years ago after more than 50 years in radio, working his way up from a little country radio station 3BO, to eventually gain notoriety as a nationally syndicated "talkback" host.

Laws was blessed with the perfect sonorous radio voice.
Known as "God" he played the role to perfection from his daily echo-chamber enhanced introduction "Hello World…..", female-only staff, (his "hand maidens"),  and a studio equipped with a genuine golden microphone.

Laws hobnobbed with the rich and famous in Australia and abroad.  The movers and shakers of country music at home and in the U.S. were his friends.  Slim Dusty, John Williamson, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Glen Campbell and Roger Miller.

Prime Ministers, politicians and celebrities grovelled and pleaded to be interviewed, ever mindful of the potential "Laws influence" on their popularity.

His political opinions were often diametrically opposed to mine.
The verbal warfare he inflicted upon public figures he considered inept, poorly advised, or just plain stupid, was vitriolic and relentless.  He treated them with imperious contempt.
He especially railed against anything he considered a waste of taxpayers money.
"Governments don't create wealth and they never will, all they do is take, consume, redistribute, and annihilate wealth."

Laws was never about balanced reporting.
With this limitation firmly understood, I nevertheless found much humour and entertainment during the years when I was part of his audience.

I stopped listening to him on the very day it was discovered that he was amenable to changing his apparently personal viewpoints in exchange for fistsful of corporate dollars.

Prior to this event, he himself wrote in 1995;
"Most people, rightly, abhor bribery, but it is better than brute force."
Well I just happen to abhor bribery and brute force, and I am also unimpressed by dishonesty and deceitfulness.

Many people will forever condemn Laws.
He was never "God" and possessed as many character flaws as the rest of us.

I however would prefer to remember him as a man who excelled in his chosen career, was a caring friend for Dale, a man with a disability, and, to the very end, exhibited loyalty to his long-deceased friend Roger Miller by ending every single program with his song.

"Let me be a little kinder,
 Let me be a little blinder,
 To the faults of those about me.
 Let me praise a little more."

Words which Laws and all of us should perhaps have heeded a little more in life.

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About GOF

"Life is like a sewer. What you get out of it, depends upon what you put into it." (Tom Lehrer)

8 responses »

  1. Ha, it sounds like he was lighting up the airwaves before it was fashionable. Love the golden tonsils idea.
    My mom actually lives in an apartment that is part of a radio station – not for music but rather conservative talk radio. It drives her nuts because she's a liberal but the honorable Republican DJs shovel her driveway and help her when it's icy (she's disabled). I told her, I don't care what political party they are, stay there so you can stay safe! LOL

  2. Did he call his wife "Princess" ? I read somewhere once that he fell in love with her when she was only 14! She went off to London (I think) for awhile before they met up again. He does have a gorgeous voice – it has just the right timbre.

  3. Never liked him much, or any other talkback host for that matter. They're all paid big bucks by the Establishment to brainwash the masses. Cash for comment was no surprise at all.

  4. Thanks Ellie. Laws really polarised the nation with his performances. I can understand why many people never liked him or his politics, but I think at times many poorly performing public servants and politicians need to have fire crackers lit under their arses, and Laws certainly did that. Pity the big money eventually got in the way of his entertainment.

  5. I forgot about the "Princess" part of his life. He certainly did call her that, and it would be nice if the story you tell is true. I have not heard a better radio voice anywhere in the world.

  6. Now why did I just think you might say that Snowy:-)C'mon now, how about just a poofteenth of Roger Miller generosity now that he has retired.Even if it is just that he passionately promoted Australian country music….Slim Dusty, Troy Cassar-Daley, John Williamson, Lee and Tania Kernaghan…..all good people.Not all of us masses were brainwashed. There was good entertainment as well as the politics.

  7. Not all of us masses were brainwashed. There was good entertainment as well as the politics.I suppose I only listened to him a couple of times, both while driving long distances, so maybe I'm being too hard on him. Maybe… To each his own.

  8. Now that's much more forgiving…….feel free to celebrate in Snowys Church of Forgiveness tonight with an extra glass or two of whatever beverage takes your fancy 🙂 In fact I think I feel a thirst coming on too. I'm outta here.


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