Author Archives: Noel Turnbull

Noel Turnbull

About Noel Turnbull

Noel Turnbull is a blogger who has had a 40-year-plus career in public relations, politics, journalism and academia.

Morrison refuses to acknowledge Australian Nobel Peace prize winners

The Australian winners of the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN)  are celebrating the ratification by 50 countries of The Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. However, the Morrison Government has refused to … Continue reading

Posted in World Affairs | 3 Comments

Morrison: How to market denialism on climate change

Scotty from marketing may now be the common Scott Morrison descriptor.  When it comes to climate change it is more and more spin.

Posted in Environment and climate | 1 Comment

Lobby Land. The retiree lobby, the poor dears

Lobbyists can be pretty shameless – from hyperbole about the ‘unintended consequences’ of some legislative or policy change they don’t like – to arguments which would shame a beginner debater.

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Army and Defence PR – an ungrateful mess

Australian Army PR was once a successful system which benefitted the troops, media and the community. Now it has been subsumed into a bureaucratic corporate brand management system closely controlled by Ministers and their staff.

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Biden at Gettysburg

Donald Trump thought about giving his campaign speech at Gettysburg but opted for the safety of the Rose Garden instead.

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

A round up of the latest US polls

Whatever anyone thought of the first Presidential debate it doesn’t seem to have yet halted Joe Biden’s gradual increases in support as measured by a variety of US polls.

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Australia and VC Awards

Among the many memorial plaques in the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral is a small plaque and bust honouring Captain Noel Godfrey Chavasse, VC & Bar, MC (9 November 1884 – 4 August 1917).

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | 2 Comments

ALP rank and file push reforms

The Bracks-Macklin Victorian ALP review released its first recommendations in July 2020 – no brainer rules amendments for immediate action to end bulk membership sign-ups and ensure individual members pay for their own membership.

Posted in Politics | 3 Comments

How would a fairness campaign fare in Australia?

Whether it was ever a myth or not there has been – until recently – an ingrained belief that Australians value fairness and the fair go, as the concept was often characterised.

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

The myth and the veterans’ problems that will not die

There are almost too many myths about Australia’s Vietnam War involvement to keep track. But one of them – that all National Service conscripts had the option of volunteering or not when about to be posted to Vietnam – is … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security | 7 Comments

Greg Sheridan’s feverish cherry picking

What has Greg Sheridan of The Australian been smoking or taking, or is it just common or garden cherry picking?

Posted in Arts and Media, Politics | 7 Comments

Tin ear PR

Sometimes PR campaigns to address problems cause even bigger PR problems. For instance the aged care industry is planning a major campaign to ‘change the conversation’ and ‘win the hearts and minds of middle Australia’ according to The Age (2 … Continue reading

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When power – or the desire for it – ends

When asked during one of his long, long media conferences about speculation on whether he was planning to stand down as Victorian Premier, Daniel Andrews, replied “I’m not going anywhere”.

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Thank you for your service

The Morrison Government’s hypocrisy ranges across many areas but one of the most galling is the disparity between the protestations about thanking veterans for their service and how they allocate veteran related budgets.

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The looming financial and social storm – Part 2

Global debt, financial and social problems are about to get worse thanks to the usual suspects – governments’ corporate welfare policies and corporate welfare rorts – and dramatically increase inequality.

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Why do LNP Governments hate the arts and universities?

LNP Governments’ vindictive attitudes to the arts are obvious from the widespread cutbacks they have imposed on the sector. Ditto universities which have been forced to rely on overseas students to make up funding shortfalls and are then attacked for … Continue reading

Posted in Arts and Media, Education | Leave a comment

Putting Rosalind Franklin into pandemic perspective

The British decision to put Rosalind Franklin’s famous Photograph 51 on the new 50p coin is a reminder that the controversy over her DNA X-ray diffusion work is but one part of a much larger scientific career.

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Four legs good two legs bad, private good public bad

For decades there has been a relentless chorus – rather like Orwell’s four legs good two legs bad – conditioning us to believe that private is good and public is bad.

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Been there, done that – Thatcherism and Reaganomics revisited

The Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, has announced the government recovery strategy – emulate Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan. The problem is that Australia has been there and done that with the same very mixed results Reagan and Thatcher achieved.

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Watching Fox News in the US may kill you

Recent US studies demonstrate that watching Murdoch’s US Fox News increases the likelihood of you believing what’s not true about COVID-19 and – if acting on it – possibly dying.

Posted in Health, Media | Leave a comment

How climate has changed the world

The Morrison Government’s attitude to our history is that it started with Captain Cook and then – as if transported by the DeLorean car – arrived at the era of John Howard, Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher and Milton Friedman.

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The cost of outsourcing public health services

The current Victorian Hotel Quarantine Inquiry headed by the Honourable Justice Jennifer Coate AO is putting two things on trial – one predictable media fodder and the other at the root of decades of neo-liberal outsourcing and privatisation.

Posted in Health, Politics | Leave a comment

Our warmongering allies: the alliance, Part 2

In 2004 Janet Jackson flashed a breast (sorry, suffered a wardrobe malfunction) during the Super Bowl half time entertainment. The same day 109 innocent civilians were killed in a suicide bombing in Iraq.

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Australia and the US, an odd couple for an alliance

Successive Australian Governments have revelled in having a close relationship with their US counterparts. At times it is has been pandering; at others it has resulted in engaging in illegal or unwinnable wars; all cloaked in mutual admiration.

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What does the Eden-Monaro result mean?

The Eden-Monaro by-election status quo ante result raises two questions: why isn’t the Prime Minister’s high approval rating translating into an improved rating for the government; and, why do the media keep up the same old tired approaches to covering … Continue reading

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US belief in national exceptionalism collapses

Donald Trump promised he would make America great again. Instead he has presided over a significant collapse in belief in American exceptionalism.

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Three different views on post-COVID recovery

Two reports on social and economic options for post-COVID-19 recovery, one from the Grattan Institute and one from Phil Ruthven, have recently been published. We can assume there is a third, not yet public: a snap back and marketing plan … Continue reading

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Google is not always the best answer

Google has become the default casual research tool for most people, albeit  a sometimes dangerous one for students with AI plagiarism software widely used in universities. Yet  print editions of various reference texts are still of greater value and utility … Continue reading

Posted in Education | Leave a comment

How and why political parties are corrupted in Victoria and elsewhere

Modern Australian political parties are more likely to be corrupted by ideological or religious fanatics and power-seekers than by disputes about policy and how to get into government.

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

The battle to shape perceptions of political parties

Right wingers are better at framing policies than progressive parties.

Posted in Politics | 9 Comments