Batman: how it went wrong for the Greens

“The saboteurs’ intent was clear: it was preferable for Labor to win.”

Following the Greens’ loss in Batman, the party is coming to terms with the calibrated and carefully timed attacks from within.




Behind Dutton’s ‘white farmers’ untruths

“It was more an expression of black frustration at the glacial pace of land reform than of true intent. ‘Any suggestion of land just being taken willy-nilly is not true.’”

Aided by enthusiasm in the Murdoch press, Peter Dutton’s concern for white South African farmers shows a minister detached from facts.



The George Pell committal hearing

As the preliminary hearing continues into allegations against George Pell of historical sexual offences, the tone of the cardinal’s possible defence is becoming clear.



China could stop sending students

“It is the latest sign that all is not well in the two countries’ relations. When it comes to bilateral brinkmanship, two can play.”

Signals from China that it may restrict the number of its students enrolling in Australian tertiary institutions have foreign-fee-dependent universities alarmed.



Same-sex marriage in India

In India, homosexual sex remains illegal and deeply taboo, but the Arranged Gay Marriage Bureau and a highly ranked royal are working hard to change that.



Cambridge Analytica trades in people’s fears

Cambridge Analytica in Australia. Trump fires up. Poison case gets Boris Johnson treatment. Menadue scolds Dutton over South Africa comments.




Chris Wallace
The case against Malcolm Turnbull

“There is a moral case for moving Malcolm Turnbull on. If principles of right and wrong mean anything, using one standard to unseat a rival and another to hold on to the job you stole from him while failing to meet that standard yourself is hypocrisy on a very grand scale. It is the marker of a weak, untrustworthy person. ”



Paul Bongiorno
Bill Shorten’s strategies paying off

“The atmosphere was electric when Labor’s victorious Batman candidate, Ged Kearney, entered the room flanked by Opposition Leader Bill Shorten. You would think they had just won the general election rather than retained a seat they had held for the past 50 years. But this was no ordinary byelection result. ”



Mr Humphreys, are you free?

Doug Humphreys, president of the Law Society of NSW, had a frightful time on his recent LAWASIA fact-finding mission to the Maldives. The delegation thought they had all the proper authority to conduct their investigation into the independence of the Maldives’ judiciary and crumbling rule of law under the strongman Abdulla Yameen, only to be taken into custody “in a closed detention facility under guarded surveillance” as soon as they arrived.

An insider’s outside view

A new podcast from Schwartz Media

Join Richard Denniss, The Australia Institute’s chief economist, as he tackles Australia’s most important political and economic issues in a new weekly podcast.

Find The Lucky Country on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.

Letters & Editorial



Dutton’s casualties

It is worth considering who else is dead to Peter Dutton. Their names are a reminder of the worth of that criticism. Fazel Chegeni is dead to him. He died on Christmas Island while Dutton was the minister responsible for his care, crushed by a bureaucracy that had left him stateless. When he died, his file ran to 700 pages.



The burning issue of climate change

As a resident of Tathra surrounds, still fighting to secure my property from the fires, I am calling for help. There is no doubt climate change was a factor in why the Tathra fire was so devastating. …


Time to exit Adani

There is a slim chance Adani may well have started as a serious proposition. We will never know (Karen Middleton, “Yeah, you and whose Adani?”, March 17–23). What has become palpably clear is …

Read More



Armando Iannucci in the Bolshevik of it

Satirist Armando Iannucci has turned from his hit TV comedies Veep and The Thick of It to mining the lethal absurdities of the Soviet Union for his film The Death of Stalin. He talks about the comedy of power. “It seems strangely topical with all the talk about facts and alternative facts, new truths and old truths, and the authoritarianism too. It’s frightening.”


Breakfast television’s no-news news

Where once viewers tuned in fondly to breakfast television, personality-driven dross and offensive opinions now make some wish the format – and its Cash Cow – would be put out to pasture.


Sailing in South East Asia

“Even before she got on the boat, Amanda Johnston had done her fair share of travelling: 54 countries at last count. She was in the military for 25 years, deployed to Timor, Afghanistan, Papua New Guinea and the Middle East. In 2016, when an army colleague sent her a text message asking if she was interested in buying a boat, she thought, ‘Why not?’ ”




Smoked cod and potato soup

“Smoked cod and potato soup has become my favourite Easter tradition and one of my favourite soups. The flavour exchange between the cod, potatoes and garlic is one of life’s great pleasures and brings a richness to the somewhat sombre Good Friday offerings. ”




Misunderstanding chronic migraine

Chronic migraine puts stress on families and relationships and costs the economy in lost productivity, but a widespread underestimation of its severity may mean it is being overlooked for research funding.



‘Songs From the Inside’

A songwriting venture between musicians and prisoners will be brought to the stage at the National Folk Festival in Canberra. The Big hART project was a transformative experience for both musicians and inmates.



Spinning gold: Mitchell Swepson, 24, cricketer

As the Queensland Bulls vie for the Sheffield Shield, Mitchell Swepson talks about growing up watching Warnie and the finesse of leg-spin.



Eileen Myles


The Quiz

1. The flag of which Middle Eastern nation is green with, in white, an Arabic inscription and a sword?
2. Who wrote the 1990 novel Jurassic Park?
3. Which mythical monster has the head of a bull and body of a man?
4. Justin Timberlake was a member of which American boy band of the late ’90s and early 2000s?
5. Is an antonym a word with the same or opposite meaning?
6. Who, in 1983, became the first woman to star in, direct, produce and co-write a major Hollywood film? (Bonus point for naming the film.)
7. In music, what is the name for a note equal in length to half a crotchet?
8. To find the circumference of a circle, multiply what by pi?
9. Which South African fast bowler was man of the match in the second Test against Australia but also received a disciplinary suspension that was later overturned?
10. What is the latest model of iPhone?



“Some of the crazy lefties at the ABC and on The Guardian, Huffington Post, express concern and draw mean cartoons about me ... They don’t realise how completely dead they are to me.”

Peter DuttonThe home affairs minister complains about the reaction to his special treatment of white farmers. This adds the free press to the list of things dying on his watch.


“If you were a good journalist you would’ve done proper research instead of talking out of your ass.”

Dua LipaThe singer criticises Channel Nine reporter Richard Wilkins for suggesting she snubbed Australian audiences to appear on American television. We checked, and that is actually his face.


“As soon as I lied, I mean I never lied, but as soon as I stretched the truth, you’re in all sorts of trouble.”

Sean AylmerThe former Fairfax editorial director explains his role in downsizing newsrooms. He complained journalists were a “miserable bunch”, which seems like a fair response to working for him.


“We should not judge his achievements through the lens of these most recent events.”

Michael PezzulloThe home affairs secretary farewells Roman Quaedvlieg, fired for his work in the office affairs department. To be fair, almost no one working in a department once charged with welcoming migrants could be happy when judged on recent events.


“A breach of trust between Facebook and the people who share their data with us and expect us to protect it.”

Mark ZuckerbergThe Facebook founder responds to news of a right-wing political outfit mining the data of millions of social media users to manipulate election outcomes. Which is kind of like a weapons manufacturer complaining about wars.


“Mr Packer is suffering from mental health issues.”

SpokespersonConsolidated Press Holdings announces James Packer has stepped down from the board of Crown Resorts. The company prefers to confine mental illness to the problem gamblers on whom its profits are dependent.