Category Archives: Politics

ALLAN PATIENCE: The dilemma now facing Coalition politics in Australia

The results of the Victorian State election are devastating for right-wing politics right across Australia. It is now blindingly obvious that the policies that they have been spruiking are irrelevant to mainstream voters. It is as if the Coalition parties … Continue reading

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MUNGO MACCALLUM. Morrison suffers mental congestion.

Scott Morrison’s slogan of the week was congestion busting —  he was in favour of it.

Posted in Politics | 9 Comments

GREG BAILEY. State Labor Triumphs and Fear Campaigns Wilt

On Monday morning two days after the Victorian state election the ALP had 51 seats, the LNC 24, the Greens 1, other independents 1, with 11 still in doubt, but the outcome of which will not affect the Labor Party’s … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS. Australia-US Defence Relationship: Are we in the “prudent planning“ phase already?

The publication by the ABC of a previously highly classified analysis of the ADF’s logistic problems in the early phase of Gulf War 11 has shed some critical light on the process by which Australia joined in that war. It … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | 3 Comments

IAN McAULEY. Victoria’s election: the trend behind the noise

The Victorian election is the latest instalment of a five-year trend that has seen the Liberal Party lose ground in every state and federal election. What’s going on?

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JENNY HOCKING. Royal distortions of history: why the Queen’s secret “Palace letters” about Gough Whitlam’s dismissal should be released.

The long-running ‘Palace letters’ case over the Queen’s secret correspondence regarding the 1975 dismissal of Prime Minister Gough Whitlam heads back to court on Wednesday 28 November, with an appeal hearing before the full bench of the Federal Court in … Continue reading

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ANDREW FARRAN. Brexit: Facing the Brexit cliff even when a viable path beckons

The UK is facing its Brexit cliff and will only have itself to blame if it stumbles over. The EU has done its best to accommodate UK requirements but has now lost patience. No renegotiation is in prospect. However a … Continue reading

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MUNGO MACCALLUM. Government doesn’t get GetUp!

The quest for a right wing opponent to GetUp! has been going on for almost as long as the quest for a right wing Phillip Adams at the ABC – and with about as much success.

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WILLIAM BRIGGS – The Victorian election in a global context

That the ALP won the Victorian election was not really a surprise. The magnitude of that victory certainly was. Tea-leaves are being read and many a goat has had its entrails threatened as the political class and the media search … Continue reading

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CAVAN HOGUE. Democracy and the Future.

Recent polls have reported that roughly half of young Australians do not think democracy is the best form of government.  There have been other expressions of concern in the media about the state of democracy in Australia and indeed the … Continue reading

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DUNCAN MACLAREN. Scotland: Overcoming the Scottish Cringe to Exit Brexit

I was recently in Croatia with representatives of Caritas members mostly from Eastern European countries. I was a speaker and a facilitator for these newer members of the largest aid, development and social service network in the world attending the … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. Saturday postings

We are changing our Saturday postings. We will continue to post hyperlinks to ‘good listening and reading’   that we feel will be of interest over the weekend. We will also give timely notice of the contents of Geraldine Doogue’s Saturday Extra. … Continue reading

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RAMESH THAKUR. Racial misprofiling

On 9 November, Hassan Khalif Shire Ali crashed a vehicle full of gas cylinders in Bourke Street, Melbourne and stabbed three people, one fatally, before being shot by police. The 30-year old was on multiple watchlists at the time because … Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, Politics | 1 Comment

JOHN MENADUE. Health Reform Priorities

Health costs are rising through greater use of technology, ageing, lack of coordination and waste. Doctors provide too many services. Mental , Indigenous and dental health have serious problems. Services are being delivered less equitably. Progress has been made particularly … Continue reading

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KIM WINGEREI. It’s Time for Ethical Politics.

As we decry what many say is the most incompetent Government in living memory, it’s important not to fall into the trap of just waiting for it to be replaced, thinking all will be well henceforth. We need to look … Continue reading

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MICHAEL PASCOE. Leaderless Australian government outsources all responsibility (New Daily, 20.11.18)

It has come to this for the Australian government: With no leadership, no mettle and no political capital to spend, difficult decisions are outsourced, and responsibility for decisions that might offend is spread far and wide.

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GARETH PORTER. America’s permanent-war complex. (The American Conservative, 15.11.2108)

What President Dwight D. Eisenhower dubbed the “military-industrial complex” has been constantly evolving over the decades, adjusting to shifts in the economic and political system as well as international events. The result today is a “permanent-war complex,” which is now … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, International Affairs, Politics | 1 Comment

ABUL RIZVI. Morrison says ‘enough’ to a problem largely of his making.

Scott Morrison says ‘enough’ to the level of migration to Sydney and Melbourne (see here). Yet he fails to mention that it was his actions that brought about the surge in migration to Sydney and Melbourne in the first place. … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Another week, another stuff-up. Israel and Indonesia.

Bill Shorten and Penny Wong got it right last week: ScoMo’s pre-Wentworth thought bubble about moving the Australian embassy to Jerusalem should be dead, buried and cremated. It was always a bad idea and if there was any doubt the … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 3 Comments

ERIC SIDOTI. Let the Privatisation Games Begin

Privatisation has been the source of ongoing debate in this country since at least the 1980s. For much of the intervening years though to question the virtues of privatisation – and the accompanying sanctification of competition and choice- has been … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | 7 Comments

JERRY ROBERTS. The Holy City.

The Jerusalem embassy is Scott Morrison’s first serious mistake as Prime Minister, but Australians think Tel Aviv is a subsidiary of Telstra so he may get away with it.  It is the bread and butter domestic issues that win and … Continue reading

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CAVAN HOGUE. Where the bloody Hell are You?

Our current Prime Minister loves P R slogans and seems to believe that they are a satisfactory alternative to an understanding of a world that does not eat meat pies. To his credit, however, he has publicly criticised US trade … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 1 Comment

ANDREW FARRAN. Brexit: The Beginning of the End

Thursday 15th November was a most extraordinary day at Westminster where a besieged lady tenaciously stood her ground at the despatch box and stared down some hundreds of howling Parliamentary interlocutors (mostly of her own party) and remained totally unfazed … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 2 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. The latest hobgoblins.

On the eve of an APEC meeting, with impeccable timing, Australia’s lack of foreign policy independence was once again on display for our Asian neighbours: mimicry of US decisions, militarism abroad, securitised borders, containment of China, and fear of Islam. … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 2 Comments

MUNGO MacCALLUM. China, The US and the Manus Island naval base.

APEC, Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation, was really Bob Hawke’s idea.  The Prime Minister of the day envisaged it as a purely economic gathering, a meeting of finance ministers to deal with the growing impact of globalism and ensure dialogue and the rule … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | 2 Comments

JACK WATERFORD. Frydenberg will pick up the election bill (Canberra Times 16.11.2018)

If I were a Labor warrior, thinking cautiously ahead about political warfare from mid-2019 – after Labor had taken government – I might be judging that no present preparation could repay the investment more than a very strong focus on … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | 2 Comments

RICHARD TANTER and BUSINES INSIDER INDIA. Darwin, the Marines, and touring the American empire of bases

The idea of ‘US imperialism’ may be seen as a fiction of the ideological left, or as an overblown presentation of the presence of a few US bases in different countries. But the US military does indeed operate on a … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | 4 Comments

FINTAN O’TOOLE. How Brexit Broke Up Britain (New York Review of Books, 13.11.18)

So, at long last, it seems that the negotiations on Brexit between the United Kingdom and the European Union have produced a draft agreement. We do not yet know what it contains but it will be a compromise that falls … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE- Sacrifice is being politicised. Militarism is becoming the norm.

Remembrance is morphing into  acceptance of conflict. The culture war about remembrance being waged by conservatives and the military is winning with little opposition.  The never ending stories of Gallipoli, the Western front and Armistice go on and on. We are … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | 16 Comments

HENRY REYNOLDS. Has the Cavalcade of Commemoration Finally Halted?

With Remembrance Day behind us we may finally have some relief from the relentless commemoration of conflict which began twenty years ago and climaxed with the centenary of the First World War. Historians of the future may well wonder where … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | 7 Comments