In defence of calling James Packer a mean-spirited prick

I have often lain awake after a night on the claret cordial thinking whether an informed jury of my peers would convict me for ever calling Jamie ‘Al’ Packer a mean-spirited prick.  Unsure of the blurred legal lines between opinion and fact when defending oneself against a defamation case I also wonder what evidence I could tender to support my claim.  The biggest weakness in my defence would be that I do not have concrete evidence that Jamie Al Packer is a prick so I would naturally never call him one.

However in theory, if they were mounting their case against me Al’s legal eagles may be able to use the principle of precedence by raising the ghost of an earlier indiscretion that I allegedly committed against the young Jamie some decades ago.   It happened when I was a ‘guest’ in one of the boxes at the Sydney Cricket Ground.  From memory, it was the then State Bank corporate box.  The State Bank had recently morphed from the Rural Bank that once proudly claimed “We do more for you…personally”.  This was a distant time when customers were king not the shareholders.  I’d cut a hole in a few bottles of Tyrell’s Vat 47 Chardonnay and was well on the way when I went out onto the balcony.  I glanced left and there was the unmistakable Packer profile.  The bull-like build and the extraordinary chin that goes on forever.  Easter Island had come to the SCG.  Without thinking I blurted out “ Son of Goanna!”. 

Al kept his eye on an ordinary game of league but his companion, Chris ‘Lucky’ Murphy, solicitor to the stars and scallywags, didn’t.  ‘Lucky’ gave me the death stare as he brushed dandruff off his shirt.  The only thing I could think of at the time was why do people with snowfall-like dandy brazenly wear black?

A bloke I do like who makes a quid from cartooning once told me he had been at a dinner party where Al claimed that his Daddy Go had “saved cricket”.   The Meg Ryan obsessed Michael Parkinson was also at the dinner.  Parky took offence at this airbrushing and berated young Al for mistaking greed for philanthropy.

But let’s not dwell on the past, your Honour, for in more recent times Al’s bid for putting the bingo into Bangaroo and the seemingly extraordinary acquiescence of the people in charge of the process to treat him like a protected species does raise questions about undue influence.  I raise this in the interests of background only, that in Sydney the slipstream to success seems to be predicated on pleasing people like the Parrot and the Packers.  These are the people who pick and stick regardless. So as the increasingly befuddled and scrubbed Parrot struggles to find facts (see Media Watch) in his world of radio dribbles, Al struggles to hold a girl for longer than the length of Parrot’s talk-back radio delay.  They are people who like to get their own way and give very little grunt to the public good despite ‘leaked’ faux good deeds.   The fabled good deeds?  Daddy Go funding hospitals so he could get a bed and slipping dealers and waitresses a slim wad when he made millions at the tables.

But does Al’s uncanny gift of getting his own way make him mean-spirited or at worst a prick?  I think not.  In the Obedian world of NSW it makes him just another player.  Please note, your Honour, I do not wish to raise any matters of undue influence over process nor the dud figures that consultants used to support Al’s attempt to civilise the city.  I mention them purely as context.  I would in support of my claim that he is mean-spirited, table what he and his Crownie colleagues have done by changing the rules of blackjack.  In the Age newspaper last year, Jason Dowling put it well.

“They say the house always wins. At Crown casino they have gone to great lengths to ensure the adage holds true.  Rule changes at the casino mean the house does not lose when it has a hand of 22 in Blackjack Plus – a version of the world’s most popular casino card game.  Blackjack is also commonly referred to as 21 because the aim is to get 21 and not go over. But under Blackjack Plus, which is the form of blackjack on all low-bet tables (sic below $50) at Crown, a ”stand-off” occurs if the dealer’s hand is 22, meaning no one wins. Players are not given the same leniency if they go over 21.”

In other words you are well and truly rooted at Crown if you have limited funds and cannot afford to bet big at blackjack.  The Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation found ”the rules of the game to be compliant with principles of player fairness and game security”.  Anti-gambling crusader Tim Costello said if Crown was allowed to get 22 playing blackjack then ”Essendon should be allowed to have 19 players on the field”.  I love the Good Costello and while I totally agree with the sentiment I believe the world would be a significantly better place if there were both less Crowns and less AFL players.

Your Honour and the esteemed jury, as to my claim that Jamie ‘Al’ Packer is a prick.  I wish to call an expert witness to the stand.  An authority without peer. Would Mr Alan Jones please come forward…

Advertisements

5 thoughts on “In defence of calling James Packer a mean-spirited prick

    • Vested interests perhaps would argue Gaz. One has to remember that Eddie Obeid successfully sued the Herald some years back although without getting all transcendental and invoking the principle of karma it’s nice to see the Big O’s becoming the big owes and having to borrow from a lender in Taree at 20% interest.

  1. Hello Rob,
    This is fkn hilarious….You missed your true calling….although I can’t say for sure how you might have parleyed that true calling into something that adds value to our social fabric….but who gives a rodent’s rectum…about said “social fabric” that is? BTW, just what is the “social fabric”? Not to worry, just idle musing on my part, no need to phone a friend…GM (from the Other Side of the Rabbit Proof Fence. YKH!)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s