Category Archives: Politics

ELENA COLLINSON. What A Labor Victory Might Mean For Australian Foreign Policy (Council on Foreign Relations).

A federal election is due this year in Australia. While the Liberal-National Coalition government has yet to formally announce a polling day, the stage has effectively been set for a May election. According to Australian law, May 18 is the … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, International Affairs, Politics | 3 Comments

ROSS GITTINS. Hey pollies: weak wage growth won’t fix itself. (SMH 4.2.2019)

The economy’s prospects are threatened by various risks from overseas – about which we can do little – and by continuing weakness in wage growth – about which the two sides contesting the May federal election have little desire to … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | 1 Comment

JOHN MENADUE. Conservatives like Scott Morrison set the gold standard in scare campaigns.

With the Coalition policy cupboard  bare and broken we should not be surprised about the attacks on Bill Shorten and a scare campaign in the electorate. Last week Scott Morrison told us that he is ‘cashed up and ready to … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. From catastrophic to merely awful.

Coalition in new year bounce, screamed The Australian ecstatically. Well, not all that much of a bounce – the latest Newspoll showed that the government’s position had improved from catastrophic to merely awful. 

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DANIELLE WOOD, CARMELA CHIVERS AND KATE GRIFFITHS. Tasmania’s gambling election shows Australia needs tougher rules on money in politics.

Today’s Commonwealth donations data release is a stark reminder of the deep flaws in our political donations system. Contributions to political parties are revealed up to 19 months after the event, and sometimes not at all. With most states now operating far more transparent … Continue reading

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MIKE SCRAFTON. The Problem with the Nationhood Power

When influential public officials take the podium to tell us what’s what we should pay attention, close attention, to their words. Mike Pezzullo is one of the most powerful Federal public servants and therefore his view of the Australian political … Continue reading

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IAN McAULEY. Labor’s policy on imputation credits is flawed, but it’s in the right direction

Labor’s proposal to disallow imputation credits unless offset by other taxes is flawed on grounds of economic efficiency and equity. But it does try to deal with the terrible injustice that sees well-off retirees exempt from tax. That’s in contrast … Continue reading

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MUNGO MACCALLUM. The Basin plan has become a Basin scam

If you take half the water out of a river, it will affect the river.

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WILLIAM BRIGGS-The US, walls, and the paradox of a globally integrated capitalist economy

Two significant events are being played out on the US-Mexican border. They appear at first to be unrelated and yet show the paradoxes and contradictions surrounding the economic structures that dominate our lives.

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 1 Comment

JOCELYN PIXLEY. Trying to revive Howard-Costello market slogans.

The Coalition’s strategies for 2019’s election include reiterating Howard-Costello slogans. Australia’s 1996-2007 racist divisiveness is a factor while its economic policies copied decades of attacks (UK and USA) on social justice. But the sainted banks delivered the GFC just as … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | 2 Comments

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday’s environmental round up, 3 February 2019

A complete focus on climate change this week, starting with a short video by the inspirational Greta Thunberg and finishing with a map of distinctly chilly Iowa. In between, articles about last year’s game-changing IPCC report on warming of 1.5oC, … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics | 4 Comments

SATURDAY’s GOOD READING AND LISTENING FOR THE WEEKEND

A regular collection of links to writings and broadcasts in other media

Posted in Economy, International Affairs, Politics | 1 Comment

RICHARD KINGSFORD. The successive government failures behind the fish kills. (SMH 31.1.2018)

With the NSW election looming, it’s time to make sure the next state government has environmental policy front and centre at the big table of decision making. On nearly every major measure for the environment – numbers of threatened species, … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics | 1 Comment

CJ Polychroniou. Noam Chomsky: Ocasio-Cortez and Other Newcomers Are Rousing the Multitudes (Truthout, 30 January 2019)

A quick glance around the world today reveals that politics almost everywhere — from the federal government shutdown in the US to the power struggle in Venezuela and from Macron’s crisis in France and UK’s Brexit nightmare to the Israeli-Iranian … Continue reading

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MICHAEL KEATING. The Prime Minister’s Economic Plan

This week the Prime Minister promised to return the Budget to surplus, massively reduce net government debt, and create 1.25 million jobs over the next five years. However, there was no attempt to substantiate these promises, nor to argue that … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | 2 Comments

IAN ROBINSON. The Myth of the Mandate.

If they win the next election, “Labor will have a mandate to push through tax changes,” claims Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen (The Age 23/01 p. 1).

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Warren Muldine is hardly a lifelong true believer.

Warren Mundine is a serious politician. For most of his life he has been a player in the great game, either directly or more often and perhaps more effectively indirectly, through working in and around his community. His campaigns have … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 7 Comments

JENNY HOCKING. Historical myths die hard: What the Queen really knew about the dismissal of the Whitlam government

Historical myths die hard. And historical myths have plagued our understanding of the dismissal of the Whitlam Labor government by the Governor General, Sir John Kerr, on 11 November 1975. Chief among these foundational myths is the claim that the … Continue reading

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IAN ROBINSON. What has Captain Cook ever done for us?

The Prime Minister is intent on making a big fuss about James Cook. He is even promoting, at great expense, a circumnavigation of the continent by a replica of Cook’s ship Endeavour. This is an insult to Matthew Flinders who … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous affairs, Politics | 7 Comments

MATTHEW O’NEILL. How the media’s fixation with Trump was exported. (The Interpreter 23.1.2019)

The Trump administration has hurtled into its third year and the media circus that’s trailed the 45th president continues apace. Australians who didn’t tune out of the news over the summer holidays were fed a diet of chaos and controversy … Continue reading

Posted in Media, Politics | 3 Comments

CRISPIN HULL. Solution to ABC budget cuts. (Canberra Times 19.1.2019)

Here is an idea for how the ABC might deal with the inevitable round of cuts next Budget. Clever bureaucrats when faced with funding cuts go for the jugular. They attack some popular vote-sensitive function and announce it will be … Continue reading

Posted in Media, Politics | 1 Comment

STUART REES. The Real Villains in the Hakeem Al-Araibi Case

Bahrein soccer player Hakeem Al-Araibi has Australian residency, has lived here for four years but has been held in a Thai prison for sixty days. He was arrested in Bangkok because an Interpol Red Alert warrant indicated that he was … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Around the twist or navigating around Australia.

Unlike the National Party’s deputy leader. Bridget McKenzie, our Prime Minister presumably knows that James Cook and Arthur Phillip were not the same person. They may have both been dead white male sailors serving the mad King George III, but … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 13 Comments

RICHARD BUTLER. Unconstitutional politics.

The evidence is now in.  Donald Trump wants a second term: his base is indispensible to this end; he must deliver on the biggest chunk of red meat he tossed it during the election campaign – the wall on the … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 2 Comments

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday’s environmental round up, 27 January 2019

The Australian Energy Market Operator’s report (summarised here by Sophie Vorrath) into the power failure (caused by a lightning strike) that affected Victoria, NSW and Tasmania in August 2018 illustrates the complexity of maintaining reliable electricity supplies across Australia’s east … Continue reading

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SATURDAY’s GOOD READING AND LISTENING FOR THE WEEKEND

A regular collection of links to writings and broadcasts in other media

Posted in Politics, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

MARILYN LAKE. Change the date to 1 January

I’m with Jeff Kennett. I never thought I could say that, but I agree with him that Australia Day should be moved to 1 January – to commemorate the beginning of the Commonwealth of Australia, a new progressive nation, whose … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 9 Comments

JOHN CARMODY. Rethinking the basis for the Australia Day holiday.

        January 26 continues to be a nettlesome date for the official celebration of the Australian nation and as a commemoration of our colonial foundation. Apart from the significant nuisance that it falls so close to the end of the … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. A Repost: What does it mean to be an Australian? Are we still the land of the second chance?

The Macquarie legacy is still with us. It underpins our best instincts to give all residents in this country, whether Australian born, migrants or refugees an equal opportunity in life, a second chance. That ethos of redemption is a core part … Continue reading

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HENRY REYNOLDS. January 26….. and our Declaration of Dependence.

As we approach another Australia Day, public interest quickens and rhetoric escalates. On both sides of the front line the old trenches are reoccupied and well-known strategies rehearsed. The hostility of indigenous Australians looms large in the thinking of both … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 6 Comments