March 5–11, 2016

Cardinal George Pell, second from left, arrives at the Hotel Quirinale in Rome this week, to testify via videolink.


Cardinal George Pell’s royal commission testimony

“‘Implausible’ and ‘extraordinary’ they called his evidence. But Pell’s greatest opponent was history, adroitly commanded as it was by Counsel Gail Furness. ”

The remarkable part of George Pell’s royal commission testimony is not its insensitivity but what it asks people to believe.



Inside John Howard’s legacy

“They didn’t set the economy up for the future and some of the policies they introduced have been ticking time bombs.”

Twenty years after he won government, the economic and political damage of John Howard’s leadership is becoming clearer.


Proposed counterterrorism laws in the spotlight

“The challenge is to keep people safe without making it too easy for the state – the government – to spy on people, harass them or lock them up without evidence.”

The government’s latest counterterrorism bill brings into question the delicate balance of protecting the community while maintaining the principles of justice.


ReSPIN deals out tough talks on gambling addiction

“Gambling has such shame attached to it. It’s very hard to come out and say, ‘This happened to me.’  ”

A program that trains volunteers to speak publicly about their gambling addiction is making inroads into educating communities on the perils of the punt.

Pro-choice supporters face anti-abortion protesters outside the clinic in Surry Hills.


NSW debates exclusion zone laws for abortion protestors

While Victoria and Tasmania’s exclusion zone laws require anti-abortion protesters to keep their distance from medical clinics, in NSW opponents invoke free speech arguments to assert their right to confront patients.

Donald Trump with supporters at a rally in Fort Worth, Texas.


US Republicans consider trumping Donald Trump

Moves to recapture Mosul from Daesh; high Iran poll turnout; Malaysian PM Najib Razak’s millions.

Australia's No.1 news podcast.



James Brown
Defence white paper seeks to address shortfalls

“It’s certain that all of the new money for defence will come at some cost to other areas of government spending. The question we all should be asking is just why this is all necessary.”


Paul Bongiorno
Tony Abbott’s party room broadsides

“Abbott and his acolytes have seized on the vacuum created by the government’s protracted consideration of its tax plans to wage a proxy war on Turnbull. ”


Caustic Coryspondence

Diarist-at-large Richard Ackland flies about the nation.

Letters, Cartoon & Editorial


ReadCartoon image, links to full cartoon page

Plumbing the depths


Expressing ideas in a free society

The editorial “False gods” (February 20-26) focusing on the Australian Christian Lobby was disappointingly misinformed and overlooked much of what the organisation does for justice and …

The bust we had to have

Paul Bongiorno (“Terms of preference”, February 27- March 4) quoted economist Shane Oliver: “The resources boom was pumping something like $70 billion into federal and state revenue, …

Read More


Image for article: Crema catalana


Crema catalana

The secret to a Spanish pot custard.


Image for article: Work Like Any Other

Virginia Reeves
Work Like Any Other

Image for article: Sing Fox to Me

Sarah Kanake
Sing Fox to Me

Image for article: See You at Breakfast?

Guillermo Fadanelli
See You at Breakfast?


Image for article: Alma Bay on Queensland’s Magnetic Island


Alma Bay on Queensland’s Magnetic Island

Finding your bearings on a nostalgic island under the watchful gaze of the local rock wallabies.

Dior’s make-up artist Peter Philips readies a model for runway, in Paris.


Dior’s make-up director Peter Philips

Dior’s Peter Philips brings creativity to the brand's commercial make-up lines.

Image for article: Heart in the game: Michael Ennis, 31, rugby league player


Heart in the game: Michael Ennis, 31, rugby league player

NRL star Michael Ennis on rebuilding confidence and making a difference in the community.

The Quiz

1. Which of these is not a dog breed:  (a) Maine Coon; (b) Basenji; or (c) Lhasa Apso?
2. In chess, how many pieces does each player start the game with? (Bonus point for naming how many of these are pawns.)
3. Kanji is a writing system used for which language?
4. The term antebellum means before or existing before a what?
5. Romulus and Remus are the legendary founders of which city?
6. What is another word for the breastbone?
7. Who wrote the best-selling Millennium crime trilogy?
8. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is living under the protection of which country’s embassy in London?
9. Which tennis player recently beat Marin Cilic to win his first ATP title at the Marseille Open?
10. What 275-drop series of waterfalls lies on the border of Brazil and Argentina?

Click through for answers.



“Cardinal George Pell yesterday uttered words that will stain his reputation forever.”

Andrew BoltThe News Corp columnist, writing on Tuesday, condemns Pell for telling the royal commission he wasn’t animated by child abuse in the diocese where he was episcopal vicar for education.


“It’s a sad story and it wasn’t of much interest to me … I had no reason to turn my mind to the extent of the evils that Ridsdale had perpetrated.”

George PellThe cardinal casually dismisses Australia’s worst paedophile, Gerald Ridsdale, who abused more than 50 children over 30 years, his crimes hidden by the church. His confusion of interest with responsibility is staggering.


“Yesterday, surrendering to fear, I did yell with the rest – the rest of that pitiless pack called journalists. My God, it was sweet.”

Andrew BoltThe News Corp columnist, writing on Wednesday, about the brief joy of practising journalism rather than defending the church and its appalling handling of child abuse.


“For one giddy day I felt the joy of being a David Marr or Robert Manne, praised for the fury of my sanctimonious denunciation of a man.”

Andrew BoltThe News Corp columnist says he condemned Pell after realising he might be left his only defender. “You fear: what if Pell is indeed proved evil? How terrible for your reputation to have covered for him.”


“People had a different attitude then … The boy wasn’t asking me to do anything about it but just lamenting and mentioning it.”

George PellThe cardinal explains why he didn’t act when a child told him of sexual abuse by a priest. Attitudes must have been quite different: soulless, indifferent to the ruin of young lives, happy to leave children responsible for their own abuse.


“The brief sunshine of approval of yesterday is already overcast with a Twitter storm.”

Andrew BoltThe News Corp columnist crawls back to his bizarre defence of a man who by his own admission did nothing to protect children from rape, his brief foray into impartiality behind him.