Category Archives: Politics

GOOD READING AND LISTENING FOR THE WEEKEND

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

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MASSIMO FAGGIOLI. ‘La Civiltà Cattolica’ rails against prosperity Gospel and its support for Trump.

The article is not shy about making the link between the prosperity gospel and the crisis of globalization — political, social and economic. 

Posted in International Affairs, Politics, Religion and Faith | Leave a comment

DENNIS ARGALL. In a changing world, who are we, where are our eyes and minds?

In what is perhaps a fantasy endeavour – to find Trump’s objectives in recent travel and assess outcomes – I suggest three. And in this essay, I look further into global and perceptual actions and needs… and the lack of … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 1 Comment

BRAD CHILCOTT. It’s not size that matters, it’s what you do with it.

Members of the Australian Parliament are rich. All of them – from the $200m Prime Minister down to the backbencher earning $203 020 a year and regardless of political affiliation – are in the top 0.5% of the richest people … Continue reading

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MUNGO MACCALUM. ACCC Report ignites squabbling.

Just when you might have thought you were getting a grip on the tin full of worms masquerading as the government’s energy policy,  along comes yet another authoritative report.

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics | Leave a comment

MUNGO MACCALLUM. Three Stooges ride again.

Our older readers – the really old ones – may remember The Three Stooges, Larry, Curly and Moe.

Posted in Politics | 10 Comments

KIM WINGEREI. Democracy is not just about elections!

A flood (by my modest standards) of social media comments to my recent post – We have to talk (about) Turkey – was a poignant reminder that so many believe that democracy is mainly about free elections. The way many … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 4 Comments

ELIZABETH HLAVINKA. High Opioid-Use Counties Voted Trump in 2016 (Medpage Today 22/6/2018)

Opioids are symptom, symbol of ‘larger social and economic problems’.  Counties with the highest rates of chronic prescription opioid use were far more likely to back Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election, a new study of Medicare claims data found.  

Posted in Health, Politics | 1 Comment

JOHN MENADUE. The litany of anti social and failed privatisations. ( Edited repost from 21 July 2017)

Coalition politicians, bankers, accountants and lawyers still persist with their fixation with privatisation despite the fact that it is failing in one area after another and the electorate shows very clearly that it does not want it.   

Posted in Economy, Politics | 3 Comments

TERRY BARNES. Pharmacy power is a paper tiger (AFR 4/7/2018)

If something looks, walks and acts like a duck, it’s a duck. In the case of pharmacy giant Chemist Warehouse, however, it’s anything but.   

Posted in Economy, Health, Politics | 1 Comment

FINTAN O’TOOLE. The long Irish 19th century is finally over (Irish Times)

We are, finally, reaching the end of Ireland’s long 19th century. I don’t mean that Ireland didn’t have a 20th century or that many momentous things did not occur within it. The visible landscape changed dramatically and so did social … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 6 Comments

TONY SMITH. Hostage to the masculine sense of entitlement.

When a society seems unable to ameliorate its social problems, something is obviously amiss. People in the USA might despair of ever breaking free of the pervasive firearms culture which is implicated in frequent mass shootings. In Australia, we have … Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, Politics | 1 Comment

JOHN QUIGGIN. Westward, look, the land is bright (Inside Story)

Amid more bad news from Washington come signs that attitudes are hardening against much of what the Trump presidency stands for.

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JOHN MENADUE. Bugging a Cabinet room, keeping sweet with News Corp and a pointless Australian Federal Police investigation of a leak

Andrew Wilkie MP has asked the AFP to investigate the improper disclosure of ‘protected information’ disclosed by News Corp. journalist Niki Savva on the ABC Insiders program on 1 July 2018. She said that Attorney General Christian Porter had been … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | 2 Comments

MUNGO MacCALLUM. Tax – something will turn up.

Scott Morrison has inched forward to another interminable episode of tweaking the tax. This time it’s the scales of the returns the states get from the commonwealth’s GST, but, as always, do not hold your breath.  

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ROSS GITTINS. Clever tax strategies may be legal, but they aren’t productive (SMH 9/7/2018)

The developed world’s economists have been racking their brains for explanations of the rich countries’ protracted period of weak improvement in the productivity of labour. I’ve thought of one that hasn’t had much attention.  

Posted in Economy, Politics | 3 Comments

GRAHAM FREUDENBERG. Trump and Putin – One last word

My unfulfilled ambition was to put a new word into the English vocabulary. May I make a last attempt with an ugly word for an ugly thing? It is ‘neo-victimism’. It defines the dominant element into today’s great power relations.  

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 2 Comments

RANALD MACDONALD. A wonderfully ‘Sydney-style’ rally was held on Sunday to galvanise support for the ABC

It was emotional, noisy, sweaty, energetic and organised chaos, as 1000 public broadcasting enthusiasts scrambled and fought their way into the 400 seat NSW Teachers Federation auditorium in Surry Hills.  

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JOHN MENADUE. Domestic violence is a greater threat than terrorism .

Last week in Sydney we saw the tragic death of two teenagers as a result of domestic violence. We know that over 12 months on average one woman is killed every week in Australia by a current or former partner. … Continue reading

Posted in Health, Politics | 1 Comment

MUNGO MacCALLUM. The Libertarians.

I have never personally met Sarah Hanson-Young, and I know absolutely nothing about her sex life.  And the same applies to David Leyonhjelm, in spades. But I do have some acquaintances with Libertarians, and have not always liked what I have … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

ROSS GITTINS. Cash and kind: How governments shift income from rich to poor. (SMH 7/7/2018)

Everyone knows the gap between high and low incomes has grown. But much of what we think we know about why it’s happened, and what the government has been doing about it, is probably wrong.  

Posted in Economy, Politics | 2 Comments

GOOD READING AND LISTENING FOR THE WEEKEND

A regular connection of links to writings and broadcasts covered in other media.

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GREG HAMILTON. The New Art Of Looking The Other Way.

 We have a Law Reform Commission that’s impotent, as well as a Commission for Human Rights that has no impact on the lack of rights of Australians. Is that accidental—or intended?  Is there a chance for any sort of reform … Continue reading

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SPENCER ZIFCAK. The Attorney-General, the ASIS Officer and his Lawyer: The Story of the Shameful Timor Prosecution

Last week the Attorney-General, Christian Porter, announced that he had approved the prosecution of Witness K, a former ASIS operative and his lawyer, Bernard Collaery, a former Attorney-General of the ACT. They are to be prosecuted for a breach of … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 9 Comments

LIZZIE O’SHEA. Witness K and foreign interference hypocrisy (Eureka Street 2/7/2018)

‘This Parliament will not allow interference in our elections or in our democratic processes,’ Senator Penny Wong declared recently. ‘We will not allow these to be subject to foreign interference, and we will not allow the covert subversion of our politics by … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Politics | 2 Comments

JOHN MENADUE. The dumbed- down tax ‘debate’ and the Canberra Press Gallery.

In the ‘debate’ over tax and the attacks on Bill Shorten, not one member of the Canberra Press Gallery could be bothered to explain to us that with dividend imputation the difference between a 25% and a 27% tax rate … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Media, Politics | 7 Comments

ALLAN PATIENCE. “Politics as a Vocation”

In his famous essay “Politics as a Vocation” the great German scholar Max Weber explained that the kinds of people who tend to become politicians lie along a spectrum. At one end of the spectrum are those who “live off … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 3 Comments

GREG BAILEY. Are Public Servants too elitist? What should their role be?

A recent article published on The Conversation “found attitudes of elitism among public servants, which effectively led them to resist public input…” and that “A clear democratic conduit between citizen and policymaker is largely absent.” But is this the best … Continue reading

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MUNGO MACCALLUM. Shorten delivers a shock.

Bill Shorten’s decision last week was a real shock – but it was the second decision, not the first, that was the surprising one.

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Abuse of and in parliament.

For even the most masochistic of political tragics, parliamentary question time can be wearing.  A constant screaming match of ever more virulent abuse and insult, it sounds (and sometimes looks) less like a part of the democratic legislative process and more … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 4 Comments