Bob Geldof can often be a polarising figure when waxing lyrical on the need for wide-sweeping changes to today's global political architecture. He paints with a broad brush and colours his argument with expressive imagination. Right wingers hate him. But whatever one's political leanings the former Boomtown Rats frontman and force behind Live Aid is always worth listening to. So it is irritating in the extreme to read conservative opinion pieces and News Ltd's Cut and Paste column belittling him as muddled and naive.
For example, take this smarmy piece of vitriol - an editorial from the Australian:
The above was in response to Geldof's appearance on the ABC's Lateline program in which he gave his views in his usual style on how the world needs to break from its perenial boom and bust cycle, while at the same time giving a well deserved kick in the backside to Rupert Murdoch as one of the overlords of the current capitalist system. According to reports, radio shockjocks joined the News Ltd chorus. Not for them the finer details, instead they ridiculed Geldof on the basis of disjointed excerpts from the interview crudely taken out of context - even making fun of the bags under his eyes and dishevilled hair. The point of this whole exercise was to dismiss him as nothing more than an old rock star with a head full of nonsense, just in case people listened to him and agreed.
It's always refreshing to hear someone who speaks with utter conviction and with a good deal of common sense. Contrast that with ideologically driven sections of the media, big business and the politicians and you can see why Geldof and those like him represent a threat to the established order.