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On Monday March 7th Tim Blair alerted his readers to the work of blogger Alene Composta.

Andrew Bolt picked up the story the following day.

Alene’s writings were a mixture of demented rantings about current political debates, meditations on her state of mental health, and personal attacks on people who disagreed with her.

So naturally she was immediately invited by the ABC’s Unleashed editor Jonathon Green to write a guest post for ABC online. After less than a day, that post was removed from the ABC website. It is still viewable through Google’s cache.

Alene’s article is a wildly paranoid take on Sean Nicholl’s story in the Sydney Morning Herald about a single New South Wales Liberal (conservative) Party member’s description of the coming NSW election day as ‘moose day.’

Right from the start there was speculation on Tim Blair’s blog that Alene Composta was a hoax.

Yesterday Gavin Atkins noted that a commenter on Tim’s blog had found that Alene Composta’s publicity photo actually came from another blog with very few posts. The subject of the blog is Wartrol, a purported treatment for genital warts. It belongs to someone called Marian Roldans.

There really is a treatment called Wartrol. War troll? It sounds like Crikey and the ABC already. Also, it’s homeopathic so it doesn’t have any active ingredients, or do anything useful. Another similarity.

At very least, Alene Composta’s photo is a fake. Or Marian’s is. Or both. I suspect the latter.

Alene Composta is one of the best thought-out and most amusing hoaxes for a long time.

Alene is a Dutch name, incidentally, related to ‘alleen’ – ‘alone.’ It could also be Celtic, in which case it means a revealing light.

Roldans? Well, there is a basque story called Roldan’s Bugle-horn, which tells of a terrifying adventure and a horn which when blown causes rocks to break and mountains to catch fire.

And Composta? How did the ABC fall for that? She might as well have been called Ophelia Bullshit.

So, a Dutch name, manure, bugle-horns and genital warts? More than fairly played by Tim and Andrew, and well done!

Update:

JF Beck points out that Alene Composta is an anagram of ‘moose placenta.’

This just gets better and better.

One Response to “Wart Girl Bumped”

  • hector says:

    Peter, Your colleague at Quadrant, Keith Windschuttle, must be giggling at this. It was two years ago that Crikey’s Jonathan Green, who now heads the Drum, was part of a really insipid hoax on the magazine. It was covered for days by the SMH and The Age, which gloated about how dumb conservatives are.

    Well now that the boot is on the other foot, not a mention in the Fairfax press. No explanation from the ABC as to how the moose “scoop” came to be published or who edited it (the ABC version is very different from the one at her blog) or, most important, why the Drum was so keen to publish it just before the election.

    This isn’t just a prank (assuming she isn’t genuine). It’s a national scandal and should be investigated by our elected reps.

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