Author Archives: Jack Waterford

Jack Waterford

About Jack Waterford

John Waterford AM, better known as Jack Waterford, is an Australian journalist and commentator.

Child sex victims being bent to national security agenda

We are all against cyber-crime – criminal offences done with the aid of a computer – are we not?  And cyber-terrorism – bad guys, and not only jihadist terrorists, using the internet to recruit, propagandise, communicate and, probably transfer money … Continue reading

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Cyber-war: building more empires than it destroys

Cyber disruption is an unpleasant fact, but not the end of the world.  But the sort of bad, unexamined and unaccountable thinking our planning involves, presents every risk of making our bullets land in the wrong places, when or if … Continue reading

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The courage deficit: Will Albanese die wondering?

Scott Morrison may have done Anthony Albanese a big favour by taking some time from his paterfamilial labours saving the nation from Coronavirus to engage instead in a little discreet fundraising and rallying of the coalition’s troops.

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Forget the trench battles. There’s a war to be won

Scott Morrison has never been so vulnerable to fundamental attack. It is about time the Albanese army began seriously probe his defences.

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Liberals throw out their Doctrines and Dogma

The Prime Minister, the head of Treasury and the present or former Chief Medical Officer may each be experts within their fields, but none of their guesses about when Coronavirus will loosen its grip on the nation’s economic throat are … Continue reading

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Corona-crisis calls for imagination, not panic, parsimony and punishment.

Tertiary education, including universities, was badly hit (to complete government indifference, even delight.) The cultural sector was punished — and a good deal more than sport. Lobbyists for pubs and clubs have had a field day with compliant governments. 

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Are we but twiddling thumbs while waiting for a vaccine?

Spare a thought for Scott Morrison during these still early days of the struggle to rescue Australia, and Australians, from the effects of Coronavirus.

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Deliberately missing the opportunities

 There were – are – people who have seen great social and philosophical opportunities in the disruption caused by the pandemic, quarantine, closures of business, and mass unemployment rendered somewhat less painful by massive government spending and new income maintenance … Continue reading

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Australia’s courts and senators are not of an accountability mind

What would happen if an Australian senate committee, dominated by Labor and the Greens and an independent, decided by majority to demand the tax return of a coalition minister, perhaps in pursuit of allegations of abuse of power for some … Continue reading

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One cannot say that the law is above our politicians

The US Supreme Court has many things in common with the Australian High Court, including some reputation for containing the odd sexual harasser, but most Australians are thankful that they have not come to be regarded as pawns of the … Continue reading

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China won’t care what we think or do about Hong Kong

One can look at the future of the seven million people of Hong Kong only with the deepest foreboding.

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Our lapdogs yap from a safe distance

The western world will probably see the absorption of Hong Kong, or Taiwan, as something that affects its national interests, in a way that the fate of Tibetans and Uighars does not.

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Dirty Dyson demolishes his own reputation

It seems impossible that the reputation of Dyson Heydon, retired High Court judge and one-time royal commissioner, will ever recover from the trashing it got this week. Continue reading

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Judge Dyson, moving in the lower circles of hell

If Dyson Heydon is guilty of the sexual harassment allegations made against him, most people would agree that he deserves what he gets. Continue reading

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Law can’t hide hypocrisy, lying and double dealing

Forty years ago, Justice Anthony Mason, later Chief Justice of the High Court, made it clear that mere embarrassment — or the avoidance of being found to be a hypocrite — is not enough to justify the protection of the … Continue reading

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Justice impossible with secret trials

Over in the United States, a former national security adviser to Donald Trump, John Bolton, has a book about to hit the newsstands. It is very critical of, and indiscreet about, his former boss. It shows Trump double dealing with … Continue reading

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JACK WATERFORD. Punishing the ‘undeserving’ – the robo-debt fiasco

Heaven knows how the ultimate costs of the robo-debt fiasco will pan out. So far the Commonwealth has announced that it is paying back about three-quarters of a billion to nearly 400,000 people whose rights were trampled upon.

Posted in Economy, Politics | 8 Comments

No public interest, it seems, in watching public money burn

The political cynic could easily imagine a string of reasons for ignoring calls for a royal commission or other inquiry into the robo-debt debacle.

Posted in Politics, Public Policy | 8 Comments

JACK WATERFORD. Morrison has all of the flexibility in the world

No modern Australian prime minister has faced the political, economic and social challenges of Scott Morrison. But it’s a funny sort of crisis because no prime has ever had such access to the extra resources he can call to bear … Continue reading

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JACK WATERFORD. The size of the COVID deficit is a political, not an economic choice

We have had an obsession with the balanced budget and with at least the aim of a reduction of government debt, at least since John Howard blew the Budget in 1983-84, then, more than a decade later, discovered a $5 … Continue reading

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JACK WATERFORD. Trump: the man who made America little again

Donald Trump, who campaigned on making America great again has presided over — indeed caused — an enormous fall in American prestige, moral authority and effective power in the world. It may still have, by far, the most military power, … Continue reading

Posted in Politics, World Affairs | 8 Comments

JACK WATERFORD. Shooting ourselves in the boot again

The announcement of the international inquiry to be conducted into international management of the Covid-19 pandemic did not achieve any of the particular purposes initially said to justify Australia’s putting its head above the parapets and attracting China’s ire for … Continue reading

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JACK WATERFORD. Dutton fights from the flank  

The Minister for Home Affairs, Peter Dutton, was rarely to be found when the discussion was fixing on how a cruise liner entered our borders and spread Coronavirus and Covid-19 across the continent – perhaps the most serious breach of … Continue reading

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JACK WATERFORD. Good policy comes from loud debate, not good manners

It took only a question about some fresh developments with the Sports Rorts affair for the prime minister to note, sourly, that it was back to politics as usual.

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JACK WATERFORD. Digesting the cases being missed

As we cautiously begin to lift the lockdown, if we don’t know who the silent carriers are, how can they play an active role in keeping the community safe?

Posted in Health, Politics | 1 Comment

JACK WATERFORD. Asymptomatic Covid cases will give us our next waves

As the Prime Minister and Premiers look to relax COVID-19 restrictions, we still need to be wary of the significant proportion of asymptomatic cases.

Posted in Health, Politics | 3 Comments

JACK WATERFORD. We intended Covid inquest idea as an insult – for no good reason

There is nothing wrong with thinking that there would be an appropriate moment for an extensive international scientific review of the arrival of the 2019 coronavirus.

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JACK WATERFORD. Spies and non-combatants rehearsing war dances

It is becoming fairly obvious that there is a significant group within Australian government that is spoiling for a major confrontation, perhaps to skirmish level with China. Continue reading

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JACK WATERFORD. The snares of proclaiming victory against the virus

With success beyond all expectations in the struggle to contains the coronavirus in Australia, one might imagine that the next task before the prime minister is discerning that exact moment at which it is appropriate to roll back the various … Continue reading

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JACK WATERFORD. Still fighting with one hand tied behind our back

Americans have so epically mismanaged the coronavirus that it is difficult to look to it for lessons. The same might be said of most of the nations of western Europe, including Britain. But the blame lies more on their politicians … Continue reading

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