June 17 – 23, 2017

The Manus Regional Processing Centre this week.


The wrong kind of settlement

“My body has been damaged and I have lost a lot of things in my life … Compensation can never bring justice.”

The decision to settle a massive case on the mistreatment of asylum seekers is more about secrecy than human rights.


Augusto Zimmermann.


Hardline Christian hoping to replace Triggs

Meet the Pentecostal lawyer West Australian Liberals want to replace Gillian Triggs as president of the Human Rights Commission.


The politics of the Finkel review

“Frydenberg declined to say whether he considered anything in the Finkel review non-negotiable. He said the whole issue was ‘political kryptonite’.”

When Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg briefed Coalition MPs on the Finkel review’s recommendations for a clean energy target, all eyes were on Tony Abbott and his supporters.


DNA tests changing criminal trials

“‘I think what defence lawyers are grumbling about is that STRmix evidence is very powerful and very convincing, and it influences juries.’ ”

New technologies calculating the presence of specific DNA are transforming criminal trials, but not all legal experts think they are sufficiently reliable.

Image for article: Stakes high in the battle for al-Raqqa


Stakes high in the battle for al-Raqqa

With Daesh under mounting pressure in the battle for al-Raqqa, the group will be seeking new ways – in other locations and abroad – to uphold the caliphate and export terror.

Image for article: Britain joins US in socialist revival


Britain joins US in socialist revival

Brexit talks begin; Trump not welcome in London, but Canberra keen; China’s online crackdown on arts news.

Australia's No.1 news podcast.



Paul Bongiorno
Citizenship opportunism

“To the consternation of much of Australia’s legal fraternity, Dutton has set about the deliberate undermining of confidence in our judicial system. He framed changes to visa and citizenship requirements in terms of new members of society embracing Australian values and positively contributing to Australian society. ”


Andrew Denton
The religious lobby against assisted dying

“The shift from paternalism to partnership in the doctor–patient relationship is an important cultural shift under way in medicine. But it is a distinct threat to those who don’t like to surrender power, or choice, to others.”


Richard Ackland
Gadfly: Sunday law school

Letters, Cartoon & Editorial


ReadCartoon image, links to full cartoon page

Cowardly motives

Dutton characterises his decisions as brave. But there is nothing brave about the government’s decision to settle. It is the cowardice of tyranny. The cost was immaterial: $70 million to keep a shroud pulled over camps that cost the government $3 billion a year to maintain.


Immigrants fear racial profiling

The wildfire indignation incited by the influence-peddling of a few recently arrived wealthy, powerful Chinese is concerning (Martin McKenzie-Murray, “Influencer containment”, June 10-16). …

US fair use system not so fair

The Arts Law Centre of Australia and the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA) were dismayed to read Patricia Aufderheide’s article “Artistic licence” (June 10-16). In …

Read More


Image for article: Apple tarte Tatin


Apple tarte Tatin

“I don’t know where the idea for upside-down things came from in the kitchen, but there is magic and theatre about it, inside out and upside down. I like the way you almost make something backwards and then it reveals itself at the end.”


Image for article: Half Wild

Pip Smith
Half Wild

Image for article: Woman of Substances

Jenny Valentish
Woman of Substances

Image for article: Gravity Well

Melanie Joosten
Gravity Well


Image for article: Roxane Gay and Mamamia


Roxane Gay and Mamamia

Roxane Gay and nonfiction authors like her will continue to open up their own lives, in the hope of changing those of others. May we not remain silent in the face of ignorance, stupidity or distress.

Image for article: The Museum of Ice Cream


The Museum of Ice Cream

Los Angeles’ pop-up Museum of Ice Cream has visitors shuffling from one branded photo op to another, stretching the idea of a museum until it has no meaning.

Image for article: Silver linings: Lisa Darmanin, 25, sailor


Silver linings: Lisa Darmanin, 25, sailor

For Rio Olympic silver medallist Lisa Darmanin ‘it’s all eyes on Tokyo’, in a bid to go one better and bring home sailing gold.

The Quiz

1. The second son of Noah in the Bible had what meaty name?
2. What is a young eagle called?
3. Which diarist once wrote: “In spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart…”
4. Which country was known as East Bengal then East Pakistan until 1971?
5. Which fish is used to make rollmops?
6. Which of the following celebrities did not die in a plane crash: Patsy Cline, Jayne Mansfield, Otis Redding or Rocky Marciano? (Bonus point for naming the decade in which these celebrities died.)
7. What is the main alcohol ingredient of a screwdriver?
8. The phrase “by the fact itself” is more commonly expressed using what Latin term?
9. Which is further east: Broome or Perth, Western Australia?
10. Which Australian tennis duo were runners-up in the French Open women’s doubles this month?

Click through for answers.



“We’ve got a judiciary that takes the side of the so-called victim rather than the side of common sense.”

Tony AbbottThe former prime minister criticises the settlement paid to asylum seekers mistreated by his government on Manus Island. Related fact: his government paid the settlement to prevent legal discussion of this mistreatment; the decision had nothing to do with the judiciary.


“Met with Michael Gordon once. Silo Bakery, Canberra, at the time of the Hotham preselection. Kinda s**t myself!”

Martin PakulaThe Victorian attorney-general reflects on the departure of Fairfax political editor Michael Gordon, part of the latest redundancy round at the publisher. Unrelated fact: Silo Bakery was the scene of a salmonella outbreak in 2012, leading to a class action.


“It was beautiful. It was the most beautiful putting-me-at-ease ever.”

Malcolm TurnbullThe prime minister mocks Donald Trump during an off-the-record monologue at the Midwinter Ball. In one short speech he managed to show he had no tact, humility or writers.


“The reason I’m here is not for damages. It’s to clear my name.”

Rebel WilsonThe actor celebrates her win in a defamation case against magazine publisher Bauer Media. The world sleeps a little easier.


“The directors of Ten regret very much that these circumstances have come to pass.”

StatementThe Ten Network informs the Australian Stock Exchange that it is going into administration. Receivership is kind of like someone agreeing to voluntarily watch the station for a while, which is new.


“I say that in the solemnity of this parliament. I had never heard of such a foundation.”

Julie BishopThe foreign minister says she has never heard of the “Julie Bishop Glorious Foundation”, set up by Chinese mining magnate and Liberal Party donor Sally Zou. Michaelia Cash quickly returned her membership.