Trump has a problem with China – but what is Australia doing?

Since Trump became President the relationship between the US and China has deteriorated to the point that some observers talk of war. Why is this and what should Australia’s role be? Continue reading

Posted in China, World Affairs | Leave a comment

Australia’s dubious record in supporting international law.

As the world descends into power politics, less powerful nations must place their faith, and potentially their security, in the retention and development of a credible international legal system. That credibility turns on the respect and observance given to it by smaller powers.

Posted in World Affairs | Leave a comment

We still need to provide adequate retirement income.

The current early drawdowns of superannuation balances will reduce those workers’ retirement incomes. It would therefore be desirable to allow and encourage them to restore their superannuation balances as and when they can. Continue reading

Posted in Politics | Leave a comment

Engaging with China about public administration reform

As some politicians and commentators call for containment of China, it is time to put forward the case for engagement instead. It can only assist with our understanding of China’s huge challenges, and maybe  help encourages continuing reform.

Continue reading

Posted in China, Public Policy | Leave a comment

Foreign Affairs and Trade are strange bedfellows in Australia today.

Paul Barratt’s recent article, favouring a freestanding Trade Department should be supported. As our nation stumbles through the fog of the Corona virus, it is time to navigate a path toward economic recovery in our relations with China. Continue reading

Posted in China, Economy | Leave a comment

Words matter – poets can change the World!

Responses to the mayhem caused by the destruction of Beirut will have much in common with the aftermath of Covid 19: long term recovery from devastation coupled to an opportunity to build societies so different from those which preceded the explosion and the virus. Continue reading

Posted in Politics | Leave a comment

COVID-19 lays bare the US’s deep problems, with some help from Trump

With the COVID-19 pandemic laying waste to the country, and President Trump’s chances of re-election fading,  the United States is at last beginning to look more deeply into its problems.

Continue reading

Posted in Health, World Affairs | Leave a comment

University Failures and Canberra parsimony.

Cynical, short-sighted and gutless – everything a proper university should eschew. But perhaps the teachers have been taking lessons from their political masters. If so, both deserve a fail. Continue reading

Posted in Education | Leave a comment

The United States moving a step closer to the brink

Kevin Rudd’s most recent article in Foreign Affairs, warns us to ‘beware the guns of August.’ His allusion to the early days of WWI is apt, but the world is by no means ‘sleepwalking’ to war but rather rushing, with eyes wide open, toward the precipice. Continue reading

Posted in World Affairs | Leave a comment

Sunday environmental round up, 9 August 2020

Renewables may be cheaper and growing faster than fossils but it’s emissions that matter and countries’ Paris agreement ambitions are a long way short of salvation. Maybe Doughnut Economics holds the key to a happier, more sustainable society and maybe mangroves can save Africa’s eastern coastline. A talented 13 year-old sings for the truth.

Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics | Leave a comment

Nurses, COVID-19 and the risks they run for us.

Nurses and other health care workers (HCWs) around the world are serving us well and at great risk to themselves. Many are exhausted but are carrying on. Still others are re-entering the workforce to assist in enabling surge capacity, so there is no shortage of goodwill and altruism. Continue reading

Posted in Health | Leave a comment

China Series: Where To From Here?(A repost from 23.12.2019)

Continue reading

Posted in China Series | Leave a comment

China must obey international rules in the South China Sea but the US ignores them in Diego Garcia (Repost 3 July 2020)

China is rightly criticised for building islands for military purposes in the South China Sea whilst ignoring an advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) brought by the Philippines. But what of the US in Diego Garcia?

Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | Leave a comment

W. Gyude Moore. China has built more infrastructure in Africa in two decades than the West has in centuries,

Where is the European or American equivalent/alternative to China’s BRI? Where is it? If Chinese loans are deceptive and are a trap and are wrong – where are the Western alternatives? How come our “shared” values do not exclude building our infrastructure? Continue reading

Posted in China, Politics | Leave a comment

Fast Tracking a National Care Service

We face the immediate future burdened with an out-of-hospital care workforce that is poorly paid, insufficiently skilled and understaffed to meet the caring needs of vulnerable people throughout the life span from infancy and childhood to old age.

Continue reading

Posted in Health, Politics | Leave a comment

Indian Australians: supporting Black Lives Matter will make us feel we belong

In The American Bazaar on 20-07-20 Revathi Siva Kumar asks: “Have the people from the land of Mahatma Gandhi done enough for the oppressed African Americans? How many of them stood in solidarity with the protesters against police brutality and racism?” Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, Indigenous affairs | Leave a comment

The UK’s Russia Report on the “Londongrad Laundromat” (Counter Punch July 29 2020)

The UK parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC), drawn from MPs and peers of all parties, last week published its report on possible Russian interference in UK politics.

Continue reading

Posted in Politics | Leave a comment

Another Hiroshima is Coming…Unless We Stop It Now (Counterpunch August 4, 2020)

When I first went to Hiroshima in 1967, the shadow on the steps was still there. It was an almost perfect impression of a human being at ease: legs splayed, back bent, one hand by her side as she sat waiting for a bank to open.`

Continue reading

Posted in World Affairs | Leave a comment

Saturday’s good reading and listening for the weekend

What people in other forums are saying about public policy Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Public Policy | Leave a comment

Aged care homes: the weakest COVID-19 link

A pandemic throws a perfect mirror onto a society and shines a light on every crack. There is no better illustration of this than the light that COVID-19 is throwing on aged care homes in Australia and internationally. Continue reading

Posted in Health, Politics, Top 5 | Leave a comment

Exposing the Hidden Hand

Clive Hamilton’s new book Hidden Hand: “Exposing How the Chinese Communist Party is Reshaping the World” is a diatribe. We do not need this hysteria when we are trying to maintain a modicum of practical relations with the People’s Republic of China. Continue reading

Posted in China, Reviews | Leave a comment

Time for ALL to think about race in Australia

Do Black lives matter in Australia? Race is surely this nation’s primal wound. But the actions of those with most power to lead or inspire this nation are not reassuring.

Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, Indigenous affairs | Leave a comment

We Need a Royal Commission into Robodebt

A Royal Commission into Robodebt could shed light on future policy and administration issues, some going beyond social security writes Whiteford, Podger and Stanton from ANU’s Crawford School of Public Policy.

Continue reading

Posted in Politics | Leave a comment

Historic houses in NSW up for sale

NSW has a priceless collection of historic houses. They go largely unnoticed, unappreciated and unfunded. Conservative politicians and their wealthy supporters stole the timeless landscape of indigenous Australia and gave it to white settlers. Now they want to profit from colonial history as well. Continue reading

Posted in Politics | Leave a comment

My Kafkaesque Trial

After Jim Kable wrote in reply to Henry Reynold’s Pearls and Irritations article, ‘When the War on Terror Turns inward’: “are there any updates” on what has become of Mr Moselmane, I feel compelled to provide a brief response.

Continue reading

Posted in China, Defence/Security, Politics | Leave a comment

Our political processes have failed us on climate change and the environment.

The Covid crisis will be controlled in a few years with new pharmaceuticals, vaccination or gradual human attenuation or immunity. Its lasting impact may well be from its distraction from addressing the crises eating away our life support systems. Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate | Leave a comment

No war with China, cold or hot

Australia must say no to any war with China, cold or hot. We must not follow US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in characterising US-China relations in Manichean terms, such as “freedom and democracy against tyranny”. Continue reading

Posted in China | Leave a comment

The Bureaucratisation of Public Education in Australia

Public school systems in Australia have seen an enormous increase in bureaucracy since the turn of the century. So-called school reforms promised less bureaucratic control but have instead intensified bureaucracy at all levels – central and regional offices, schools and for teachers. Continue reading

Posted in Education | Leave a comment

October 1972, October 2020: prospects for the United States… and us.

Decent minded Australians are tending to assure themselves that Trump will be defeated in November; many decent Americans work feverishly for the defeat of Trump. But the defeat of Trump is far from assured. Continue reading

Posted in World Affairs | Leave a comment

Democracy is an endangered species.

Democracy is an endangered species. What was recently the world’s dominant political model risks becoming a curio by mid-century. Authoritarian rule, with populist and nationalist flavours, will likely define our children’s futures. Continue reading

Posted in Politics, World Affairs | Leave a comment