Author Archives: Susie Menadue

CAMERON LECKIE. The global war of terror and the demise of the empire

As a young Army officer, watching Prime Minister John Howard’s announcement of the deployment of Australian military forces to Afghanistan in late 2001, I remember the extreme disappointment from both my soldiers and I that we would not be going … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security | 4 Comments

DON EDGAR. Elections, the arts and regional development

In all the pre-election hubbub about taxes, national deficits, the environment  and what else to spend our money on, there is scant attention being paid to the arts – an area which nurtures the soul and takes us beyond everyday … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | Comments Off on DON EDGAR. Elections, the arts and regional development

RICHARD COOKE. News Corp: Democracy’s greatest threat. (The Monthly. May 2019)

Denialism, nihilism and the Murdoch propaganda machine The slim, match-fit form of The Daily Telegraph columnist Piers Akerman, resplendent in a blue Tony Abbott T-shirt, and standing next to the former prime minister, was not supposed to be there. Not supposed … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 3 Comments

GRAHAM ENGLISH. Virtue signallers, the left wing, and the politically correct

I try to follow the advice of one of my old teachers that if you cannot write as well as Jane Austen or one of the greats you can at least aim to be intelligible. Avoiding clichés and popular catch … Continue reading

Posted in Arts and Reviews | 4 Comments

JOCELYN PIXLEY. The Coalition’s Terms on Hayne’s Commission

When Morrison says, ‘Labor cannot manage money’, he must deny banks’ large-scale 2007-2011 crises – GFC – an outcome of Liberals’ mismanagement of money. Incoming Labor reversed looming depression in a brilliant world-first. The myth, john-menadue-the-myth-that-the-liberals-are-better-economic-managers/ P&I, relies on crucial cover–ups. Some are … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | 2 Comments

BRUCE HAIGH. There is no business like show business.

The relationship between John Howard and former AFP Commissioner, Mick Keelty, put the AFP in a bad place from which it has not recovered. The solution is a full blown inquiry followed by reform, a change of culture and better … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security | 3 Comments

DIRK DE BRUYN. Re-visiting Gallipoli

I am talking with Turkish filmmaker Köken Ergun at the Rotterdam International Film Festival about a documentary that all Australian and New Zealand audiences should see. Heroes is about the mythologizing of trauma, of the First World War campaign on … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs | 3 Comments

EVA COX. The trust deficit – a seriously neglected election issue

At the forthcoming election the Coalition will be asking Who do you trust, Scott Morrison or Bill Shorten? Morrison repeated it yesterday many times. This seems odd for a leader who most reminds me of another salesman, Donald Trump. But … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 5 Comments

DAVID STEPHENS -People against the War Memorial’s grandiose extensions project.

On 23 March, the Canberra Times carried a story about an open letter from 83 distinguished Australians opposing the plan to spend $498 million on extensions to the Australian War Memorial.  

Posted in Politics | 3 Comments

PATTY FAWKNER SGS. Vague wanting. Our lives, yours and mine, are too precious to fritter away on lukewarm commitments and half-hearted vows.

Do you want God?” The retreat director’s question to me, a young nun preparing to renew her vows as a Good Samaritan Sister, was uncharacteristically blunt. The much-revered Benedictine priest must have picked up something in my attitude during our … Continue reading

Posted in Religion and Faith | 1 Comment

DUNCAN GRAHAM Kingsford Smith forecast: Expect churls Inbox x

In his 9 April post on this website ANU Professor Ramesh Thakur put the question: Who Will Bell the Sydney Airport Security Madness?  The expert on disarmament then asked: Is it possible that pranksters with a perverse sense of humour are in charge of … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security | 1 Comment

MIKE SCRAFTON. Political leadership and the next war.

If there is any consensus among commentators on geopolitics and strategic policy, it is that the world is entering into uncertain and dangerous times. In the term of the next Australian government political leadership could confront grave situations requiring decisions … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security | 2 Comments

JOHN DWYER. Politics and anti-science. Hunt’s pathetic “Flip-Flop” on the use of Taxpayer’s dollars to pay for “Alternative” Medicine

The National Health and Medical Research Council (NH&MRC) is Australia’s pre-eminent provider of advice on science and health to government and the community. Concerned that taxpayer’s dollars might be wasted subsidising private health insurance payments for a range of “Alternative”clinical … Continue reading

Posted in Health | 4 Comments

STEPHANIE DOWRICK. More death than life in the Christian (and secular) Right.

 There are many theories as to why the so-called “centre” in Australian politics has moved so far to the right that even moderately progressive views are shrieked at as “dangerous”. There are probably fewer theories as to how and why … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 4 Comments

DON EDGAR. Right-wing populism and family values

It is disturbing to find dogged anti-abortionist, anti-gay proselitisers such as MP Kevin Andrews and Endeavour Forum’s Babette Francis still representing Australia’s views at European far-right conferences. 

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

ERIC HODGENS. Catholic Governance – A Challenge for Improvement.

A monarchical organization, powered by ideology, with promotion by patronage results in bad governance. The Catholic Church has a governance problem.  

Posted in Religion and Faith | 9 Comments

JOHN TULLOH. Uncertainty on the Bosphorous as Erdoğan deals with a humiliating setback.

These are interesting times for Turkey, particularly for its president, Recep Tayyap Erdoğan. For a man accustomed to a Winx-like winning run in elections, the recent municipal polls gave him a rare poke in the eye. His AKP coalition won … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs | Comments Off on JOHN TULLOH. Uncertainty on the Bosphorous as Erdoğan deals with a humiliating setback.

DON AND PATRICIA EDGAR. Universities as Failed Critics

Back in 1997, Mark Davis complained that the Baby Boomers were monopolising public comment and should make way for the next generation – meaning him – to lead us out of ‘Gangland’ to ‘a new generationalism’. We’ve heard little since … Continue reading

Posted in Education | 5 Comments

LESLEY RUSSELL: The Budget as an Election Campaign Document

This year’s Government budget documents and the Opposition’s response are budgetary in name only – they should be seen as election campaign commitments. As such, they provide a telling story about the parties’ focus on health and healthcare and the … Continue reading

Posted in Health | Comments Off on LESLEY RUSSELL: The Budget as an Election Campaign Document

MICHAEL KEATING. The True State of the Economy

As usual the state of the economy and its management are likely to play a central role in the forthcoming election. With the election now only six weeks away and the Budget tomorrow, it is timely to consider the true … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 4 Comments

MUNGO MacCALLUM. A last minute swing, delivering an improbable victory.

On the eve of the crucial budget, the trailing coalition government finally had a shred of hope: New South Wales.  The fairly comfortable re-election of Gladys Berejiklian following nail-biting opinion polls gave them the hope that perhaps their own leader – … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 2 Comments

MARTIN WOLF. The Brexit delusion of taking back control (Financial Times 27.3.2019)

From Beijing, where I now am, the UK looks small. It also looks as if it has fallen into the hands of lunatics engaged in an astonishing act of national self-harm. 

Posted in Economy, International Affairs | 2 Comments

TERRY MORAN. The next long wave of reform — where will the ideas come from? Part 2

I want to talk about what I am going to describe as a mission – Australia’s next long wave of reform. It is the third wave of reform which must bring us to a compact on the big ideas which … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | 3 Comments

TERRY MORAN. The next long wave of reform — where will the ideas come from? Part 1

I want to talk about, what I’m going to describe as a mission – Australia’s next long wave of reform. It is this third wave of reform which must bring us to a compact on the big ideas which will … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | 10 Comments

DAVID STEPHENS. This is why the $498m extensions to the Australian War Memorial should not go ahead

Saturday’s Nine (Fairfax) newspapers carried a story about 83 distinguished Australians signing a letter opposing the plan to expand the Australian War Memorial in Canberra at a cost of $498m. The letter says the extensions cannot be justified, they show … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 8 Comments

JACK WATERFORD. Prime Minister’s ever-diminishing credibility. (Canberra Times 23.3.2019)

“How do you know when a politician is lying?” the old joke went. “You see his lips are moving.”  

Posted in Politics | 4 Comments

MICHAEL KEATING. The Future Agenda for Economic Reform

Given the lack of agreement about what are our key problems we shouldn’t be surprised that ‘economic reform’ is presently in the doldrums. But progress would be easier if the business community recognised that the old agenda to improve the … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | Comments Off on MICHAEL KEATING. The Future Agenda for Economic Reform

MICHAEL KEATING. Economic Strategy for the 21st Century

Traditionally economists have tended to ignore distributional issues. These issues were considered to rest on value judgements, and to therefore be outside the purview of orthodox neo-classical economics. To the extent that distribution did enter the economist’s model, it was … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | Comments Off on MICHAEL KEATING. Economic Strategy for the 21st Century

MICHAEL KEATING. The US Economic Outlook

One of President Trump’s proudest claims is how successful he has been in creating jobs and growth. Indeed, with typical restraint, Trump has boasted that the US economy, thanks to him, is now in the best shape of all time. … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs | 1 Comment

JOHN MENADUE. With the rise of China our failures in Asia are even more serious.

We are so used to being conditioned ,told  and doing what Washington wants that we find it hard to make up our own mind on what is in our national interest in our own region. And our failure to think … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs | 7 Comments