Julian Assange Wears Mullet Wig, Is Totally Serious About Running for Senate

As part of his continuing Australian Senate campaign, the WikiLeaks head does some karaoke.

National Journal
Matt Berman
See more stories about...
Matt Berman
Aug. 26, 2013, 8:34 a.m.

You know what a really sure­fire way to get elec­ted to Aus­tralia’s Sen­ate is? Ap­par­ently, it’s guest-star­ring in a news-par­ody rap video and do­ing your best ver­sion of an Aus­trali­an pop song from 1986.

Wel­come to the light­er side of WikiLeaks. 

First, let’s get to this “news rap” video from The Juice Me­dia, which is really, ab­so­lutely real and not something we’ve just made up.

For those of you who are a couple of years late, the in­tro mu­sic here is an un­for­tu­nate fac­sim­ile of the Game of Thrones theme (Game of Polls, get it?)  And yeah, the folks at Juice Rap News made sure to get “winter is com­ing to Aus­tralia” in­to the first 45 seconds. 

But you don’t really need to pay any mind to the first few minutes here, all of which fea­ture polit­ic­al im­per­son­at­ors. As a sum­ming up, let’s just say there are not-so-fleet­ing ex­plet­ives, former PM Ju­lia Gil­lard maims cur­rent PM Kev­in Rudd, and op­pos­i­tion lead­er and elec­tion-fa­vor­ite Tony Ab­bott throws around a lot of miso­gyny and then, in­con­gru­ously, be­comes Gol­lum. OK fine, weird, maybe of­fens­ive, but fine.

Then, at 3:40, we’re in­tro­duced to “an­oth­er con­tender seek­ing a Sen­ate seat,” from in­side of Ecuador’s em­bassy in Lon­don. Who is, of course, WikiLeaks head Ju­li­an As­sange. And this isn’t com­pletely a joke. As­sange is run­ning for a seat on be­half of his WikiLeaks Party, which has had re­cent prob­lems of its own. As As­sange can’t ac­tu­ally cam­paign for the seat in per­son, due to his self-im­posed ex­ile in the Ecuadori­an Em­bassy, he’s been largely lim­ited to on­line videos. Odd as it may seem, videos like this one can be im­port­ant for As­sange, who ac­tu­ally has some trac­tion in polling.

So As­sange isn’t afraid to pull out the stops:

 

The stops in this case be­ing a blond mul­let wig and a spoof of “You’re the Voice,” John Farnham’s hit 1986 single. “We have the chance to turn the pages over,” As­sange lip-syncs. And if there was any doubt about the WikiLeaks plat­form, he con­tin­ues:

We can write what we want to write.

We gotta make things leak, so we can get much bolder.

We’re all wire-tapped now. We’re all be­ing fed lies. 

“We were im­pressed — and quite sur­prised — that Ju­li­an agreed to the Farnham idea,” the video’s pro­du­cers said in a state­ment to Aus­tralia’s Her­ald Sun. “We fig­ure that, like us, he could see the hu­mour and power in such a skit.”

Not every­one quite saw that power though. The Sydney Morn­ing Her­ald‘s na­tion­al polit­ic­al re­port­er called the video “bizarre” and “of­fens­ive.” But for someone who is typ­ic­ally any­thing but jokey in his me­dia ap­pear­ances, the un­usu­al mul­let bit here is, at least the­or­et­ic­ally, a way for As­sange to seem like more than just an isol­ated ro­bot ac­cused of sexu­al as­sault. 

Aus­tralia’s elec­tions will be held Sept. 7. 

What We're Following See More »
WEST WING REDUX
Allison Janney Takes to the Real White House Podium
6 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

Carolyn Kaster/AP

STAFF PICKS
When It Comes to Mining Asteroids, Technology Is Only the First Problem
6 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

Foreign Policy takes a look at the future of mining the estimated "100,000 near-Earth objects—including asteroids and comets—in the neighborhood of our planet. Some of these NEOs, as they’re called, are small. Others are substantial and potentially packed full of water and various important minerals, such as nickel, cobalt, and iron. One day, advocates believe, those objects will be tapped by variations on the equipment used in the coal mines of Kentucky or in the diamond mines of Africa. And for immense gain: According to industry experts, the contents of a single asteroid could be worth trillions of dollars." But the technology to get us there is only the first step. Experts say "a multinational body might emerge" to manage rights to NEOs, as well as a body of law, including an international court.

Source:
STAFF PICKS
Obama Reflects on His Economic Record
7 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

Not to be outdone by Jeffrey Goldberg's recent piece in The Atlantic about President Obama's foreign policy, the New York Times Magazine checks in with a longread on the president's economic legacy. In it, Obama is cognizant that the economic reality--73 straight months of growth--isn't matched by public perceptions. Some of that, he says, is due to a constant drumbeat from the right that "that denies any progress." But he also accepts some blame himself. “I mean, the truth of the matter is that if we had been able to more effectively communicate all the steps we had taken to the swing voter,” he said, “then we might have maintained a majority in the House or the Senate.”

Source:
STAFF PICKS
Reagan Families, Allies Lash Out at Will Ferrell
8 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

Ronald Reagan's children and political allies took to the media and Twitter this week to chide funnyman Will Ferrell for his plans to play a dementia-addled Reagan in his second term in a new comedy entitled Reagan. In an open letter, Reagan's daughter Patti Davis tells Ferrell, who's also a producer on the movie, “Perhaps for your comedy you would like to visit some dementia facilities. I have—I didn’t find anything comedic there, and my hope would be that if you’re a decent human being, you wouldn’t either.” Michael Reagan, the president's son, tweeted, "What an Outrag....Alzheimers is not joke...It kills..You should be ashamed all of you." And former Rep. Joe Walsh called it an example of "Hollywood taking a shot at conservatives again."

Source:
PEAK CONFIDENCE
Clinton No Longer Running Primary Ads
11 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

In a sign that she’s ready to put a longer-than-ex­pec­ted primary battle be­hind her, former Sec­ret­ary of State Hil­lary Clin­ton (D) is no longer go­ing on the air in up­com­ing primary states. “Team Clin­ton hasn’t spent a single cent in … Cali­for­nia, In­di­ana, Ken­tucky, Ore­gon and West Vir­gin­ia, while” Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) “cam­paign has spent a little more than $1 mil­lion in those same states.” Meanwhile, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Sanders’ "lone back­er in the Sen­ate, said the can­did­ate should end his pres­id­en­tial cam­paign if he’s los­ing to Hil­lary Clin­ton after the primary sea­son con­cludes in June, break­ing sharply with the can­did­ate who is vow­ing to take his in­sur­gent bid to the party con­ven­tion in Phil­adelphia.”

Source:
×