May 16 - 22, 2015

Treasurer Joe Hockey during question time this week.


The mixed messages of Hockey’s budget

“The spectre of a “debt and deficit disaster” that was invoked to justify harsh cuts has been replaced with a spendathon.”

In a budget marked by confusion, the government’s hunt for ‘unfairness’ has made enemies of key constituents.


Image for article: The difficulties and despair of searching for missing persons


The difficulties and despair of searching for missing persons

Trying to track the hundreds of missing children and adults in Australia is fraught for police and devastating for families.


Why the Abbott government wants Bjørn Lomborg’s Consenus Centre

“Lomborg provides cover for those reluctant to take strong action to limit the emission of greenhouse gases, by suggesting we should work on other things first.”

Covert negotiations, whispered announcements and an awkward about-face reveal a political agenda behind reaching consensus.


Ukraine’s war

“Many still do hope that the separatists will return, despite everything. But that’s why I brought food. I hope that sausages will one day beat propaganda.”

The ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine started in the streets of towns such as Slavyansk, where murky politics and mutual suspicions led to war.


Fighting Muslim radicalisation

“We are talking the language of peace and respect, but you are not listening. It further fuels the rage. What more do you want me to be doing?”

While Muslim community leaders combat youth radicalism, the federal police are considering how to utilise returned foreign fighters as deterrents.

Amos Yee, 16, leaves court in Singapore after being found guilty of obscenity and insulting religious feelings with a YouTube video called “Lee Kuan Yew is finally dead!”


Julie Bishop faces test over execution of foreign aid cuts

Jokowi strengthens Papua relations; Singapore’s new media predicament; tense days in the Middle East.

Australia's No.1 news podcast.



Guy Rundle
Britain’s election, the Tory majority and the lost Empire

“To win the election, the Tories were willing to test the Union to destruction, effectively throwing the Scots out before they had left, on the basis of who they chose to vote for.”


Paul Bongiorno
The budget prepares Scott Morrison

“There are signs Hockey is feeling very insecure in his job. His embarrassment is compounded by his invisibility in the past couple of weeks and Scott Morrison’s in-your-face presence everywhere.”


Richard Ackland
Gadfly: Bjørn again

Letters, Cartoon & Editorial


ReadCartoon image, links to full cartoon page

Dark arts


Political cycle just spin

Much has been said already of the hypocrisy of the Abbott government’s pre-budget announcements (Paul Bongiorno, “The man who knew to mulch”, May 9-15). Where once there was an emergency …

Next election the one to lose

Since Tony Abbott became the leader of the opposition in 2009, he and his party have been relentlessly talking down Australia’s economy and its political stability. These dumb slogans when repeated …

Read More


Image for article: Kouign-amann



The buttery, sugary delights of Brittany's famous kouign-amann.


Image for article: The Challenge of Things

A. C. Grayling
The Challenge of Things

Image for article: Crow’s Breath

John Kinsella
Crow’s Breath

Image for article: Selfish

Kim Kardashian West


Image for article: The green miles of north-west Tasmania's Tarkine wilderness


The green miles of north-west Tasmania’s Tarkine wilderness

A hike through Tasmania's Tarkine wilderness provides the perfect chance for travellers to go off-grid.

Image for article: Internet dating and catfishing


Internet dating and catfishing

Though internet dating comes with self-flattery to ‘catfishing’, relationships can still be found in the most unlikely ways.

Image for article: Mr Reliable: Steve Johnson, 31, Australian rules footballer


Mr Reliable: Steve Johnson, 31, Australian rules footballer

Geelong Cats star Stevie J on growing up a Collingwood fan.

The Quiz

1. Cio-Cio San is the lead female character in which opera? (Bonus points for naming the male lead and the opera’s composer.)
2. What animal’s name comes from a Greek word meaning “river horse”?
3. Which Australian artist died in a motel room in Thirroul, NSW, in 1992?
4. The Seychelle Islands are in which ocean?
5. Which boxers this month contested the so-called “Fight of the Century”?
6. Which Australian fashion label this year celebrated 50 years in the industry?
7. Tilsit, raclette and Gloucester are all varieties of what?
8. Which country’s currency is the shekel?
9. The given names of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s daughter are…?
10. Which Greek goddess, whose name begins with the letter P, is the queen of the underworld?

Click through for answers.



“He’s our Greg Bird. I’ll be the prop forward taking it up and he can be the one who will score the try, and that’s what he’ll be doing on budget day.”

– Scott MorrisonThe treasurer-in-waiting likens Joe Hockey to a man whose recent achievements include urinating on a police car and involvement in alleged cocaine supply. Morrison clarified that he meant some other bird.


“It was a long lunch – you know how these things go.”

– Jack CowinThe fast food boss explains why his friend John Singleton attempted to glass him in a fracas at Kingsleys Steak and Crabhouse, the Hungry Jack’s of Woolloomooloo. The dispute was over whether or not it was unmanly to drink rosé.


“I’m not about to take on the might of the Guns N’ Roses lawyers.”

– James ReyneThe Australian Crawl frontman says he won’t take on Axl Rose over the fact “Sweet Child O’ Mine” sounds exactly like his song “Unpublished Critics”. Any decision in the case would halve Triple M’s playlist.


“It’s a bit like giving a gorilla a Brazilian.”

– David LeyonhjelmThe Liberal Democrat offers his view of the budget. His waking dreams are full of market-based solutions, wanton gun ownership and sexed-up freedom apes.


“But if we start letting movie stars – even though they’ve been the sexiest man alive twice – to come into our nation, then why don’t we just break the laws for everybody?”

– Barnaby JoyceThe agriculture minister announces he may have to euthanise Johnny Depp’s Yorkshire terriers, Boo and Pistol, as punishment for their possible rabies and Depp’s last six films.


“Men in America and around the world are going to be duped by explosions, fire tornadoes and desert raiders into seeing what is guaranteed to be nothing more than feminist propaganda.”

– Aaron ClareyThe men’s rights activist warns against seeing feminist “Trojan Horse” Mad Max. He reserved his views on Babe’s vegan agenda.