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Miranda Devine (born 1960s in New York) is an American-born Australian columnist and writer noted for her conservative stance on a range of social and political issues. Her column, formerly printed twice weekly in Fairfax Media newspapers The Sydney Morning Herald and The Sun-Herald, now appears in the News Limited newspapers Daily Telegraph, Sunday Telegraph, Melbourne's Sunday Herald Sun and Perth's Sunday Times. She also hosts The Miranda Devine Show, a weekly syndicated radio show on Sydney station 2GB.
Life and career
Devine is the daughter of veteran journalist, editor and conservative columnist Frank Devine. She and her two younger sisters spent considerable parts of their youth overseas while their father was working as a foreign correspondent for Australian newspapers and, later, edited various American newspapers. While living in Tokyo, Devine and her sisters attended an American International School and learned to speak Japanese fluently. A devout Roman Catholic like her father, she completed her high school education at Loreto Kirribilli, a Catholic girls' private school in Sydney. After school, she completed a mathematics degree at Macquarie University. She joined the CSIRO in their textile physics division, where she worked for four years. She then completed a Master's degree in journalism at Northwestern University in Chicago.
On 6 August 2010, The Daily Telegraph announced that Devine would be returning as a columnist for both The Daily Telegraph and Sunday Telegraph.
Commentary and controversy
Devine is a friend of fellow conservative columnist Tim Blair, who said of her, "She's got good antennae. She can read people which is why she accurately predicts election results". When interviewed for an April 2007 article in The Australian about hate mail received by female columnists, Devine commented, "You are contesting ideas and you have to do it in a polarising way. When you write a column, you can't sit on the fence".
In their book Silencing Dissent (Allen & Unwin), Clive Hamilton and Sarah Maddison accuse Devine of belonging to a "syndicate of right-wing commentators who receive favour from the Howard Government."
In 2007, Devine travelled to Afghanistan and Iraq with the Australian Defence Minister, Brendan Nelson and Australian Defence Force chief Angus Houston, where she interviewed US General David Petraeus, Commander of the Multi-National Force. Her resulting report about the early success in Iraq of the US military "surge" was criticised by Media Watch.
In 2011, Devine created controversy when she used the news of Australian federal government minister Penny Wong's decision to parent a child with her female partner as the basis of a column in which she argued that the 2011 riots in England were the result of a "fatherless society". She has also attacked the administrators of a rugby association for banning a player for homophobia, and defended the former Prime Minister Tony Abbott. She generated controversy in 2005, attempting to associate Muslim faith with a recent attack on a young woman in Sydney, again attempting to associate the so-called "absent father" phenomenon with criminal activity.
In 2015, Devine sparked considerable controversy after claiming that "women abusing welfare" were the main cause of domestic violence. According to Devine, "If you want to break the cycle of violence, end the welfare incentive for unsuitable women to keep having children to a string of feckless men".
- Devine, Frank (2009). Popping fifty corks. Quadrant, May 2009. Reprinted in: Devine, Frank (2009). Old & wiser: essays 2002 – 2009. Sydney: Quadrant Books. ISBN 9780980677805.
- Diana Bagnall (24 November 2004). "Who is Miranda Devine?". The Bulletin.
- "Columnist Miranda Devine returns". The Daily Telegraph. 6 August 2010.
- Sally Jackson (12 April 2007). "You've got hate mail: It's her job to have opinions, but does saying what they really think make female columnists particularly vulnerable?". The Australian.
- "How a right-wing, pro-Howard cabal is stifling debate", an excerpt from Silencing Dissent, printed in The Australian on 31 January 2007
- "Those boots make a difference", Miranda Devine, The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 September 2007
- "Good Morning Iraq" Media Watch, 10 September 2007
- Devine, Miranda (14 August 2011). "The Problems of a Fatherless Society". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 14 August 2011.
- Deveny, Catherine (17 August 2011). "Why equal rights activists need Miranda Devine more than rallies". The Drum (Australian Broadcasting Corporation). Retrieved 24 August 2011.