October 14 – 20, 2017

Liberal Democrats Senator David Leyonhjelm.


The gun nuts in our parliament

“Leyonhjelm has no problem with Australians carrying guns in public, as many Americans already do. Or packing other weapons, for that matter, like ‘pepper spray, mace, a personal Taser, knife, something like that’.”

While Australian gun laws are lauded as the world’s most stringent, fringe political parties and lobbyists are doing their best to erode them.



Abbott looks to Pell on energy policy

“Addressing the climate-sceptic Global Warming Policy Foundation in London, Abbott returned to his own scepticism about whether climate change is occurring to worrying degrees. He adopted his private confessor’s argument and his style.”

In condemning action on climate change as killing ‘goats to appease the volcano gods’, Tony Abbott was paraphrasing an earlier speech by his confessor, Cardinal George Pell.

Image for article: Housing affordability and tenancy laws


Housing affordability and tenancy laws

An upcoming Victorian byelection promises to have important implications for housing affordability nationwide.


Law and ordeal

“Jon Walker tries to tell the judge how the death of his oldest son has affected him. He is not a writer or an orator. He’s a father standing in a courtroom trying to articulate rage and grief. Words are not enough. ”

Attending the manslaughter hearing considered the test case for Victoria’s ‘one-punch’ laws provides a glimpse of how our legal system can fail to deliver the closure sought by all involved.

A Coalition for Marriage “No” campaign advertisement in a Chinese-language newspaper.


The ‘No’ case in Chinese media

Chinese Australians are seeing advertising from the Coalition for Marriage but the community’s conservative media are declining to publish views supporting same-sex marriage.

US Navy admiral Harry Harris, who is to be nominated as ambassador to Australia, pictured at the joint military exercise Talisman Sabre in June.


Despite Trump, Iran nuclear deal working

Possible Yemen role for RAN. 4-star ambassador for Australia.

Australia's No.1 news podcast.



Clem Bastow
Hollywood’s disgrace of ‘open secrets’

“This is the sad song of contemporary feminism: burnout for the women who speak up, endless “cookies” for the men who offer little more than lip service. It’s bittersweet to admit that women and other marginalised people don’t seem to be able to shatter this status quo: if we are truly to conquer the Stone Age behaviours of men such as Harvey Weinstein, we need their fellow straight, white men to intervene, to demand a different standard.”


Paul Bongiorno
Tony Abbott’s shadow over government policy

“Flying in the face of science is not something Turnbull or Frydenberg say they want to do. Neither, incidentally, did Abbott when he was prime minister. But now if we are to believe Abbott’s London speech, that was all a charade. He never really stopped believing the science was “crap”. We know his characterisation of the Labor government’s carbon price as a “tax” was also a confection. ”


Richard Ackland
Gadfly: Weapons of misdirection

Letters, Cartoon & Editorial


ReadCartoon image, links to full cartoon page

Overdue care

The government’s response is that it doesn’t care. It will not suspend its flawed system of debt collection. It defends its actions in inaccurately and inappropriately raising thousands of debts against Australians. It feels no contrition or need to apologise.


Time to act on constitution

Karen Middleton’s interview with Mick Dodson (“Fixing the constitution”, October 7-13) demands the long-overdue updating of our constitution to align it with Australia’s international …

One message of hope

It was shocking to read Penelope X’s story of continued abuse by the Catholic Church in Victoria (“Nothing real can be threatened”, October 7-13). I am in awe of her determination to deliver …

Read More


Warwick Thornton.


‘Samson & Delilah’ creator Warwick Thornton

Filmmaker Warwick Thornton’s latest offering, Sweet Country – a dark, outback, period western – brings the truth of Indigenous history to life through fiction. Says Thornton: “I was ready and really hungry, and a nice, big-arse western, a massive epic full of horses and guns, men scratching their balls, felt really, really good to me.”

Image for article: St. Vincent’s ‘MASSEDUCTION’


St. Vincent’s ‘MASSEDUCTION’

Annie Clark’s latest St. Vincent album, MASSEDUCTION, is an instant classic, delivering an often dark and desolate vision rendered with a glistening pop sheen.


‘Food Safari Earth’ host Maeve O’Meara

“Enmore is the next stop. From its exterior Stanbuli looks like a 1960s hairdresser, complete with original lolly-pink signage advertising the Marie-Louise Salon. Inside is a romantic Turkish restaurant with geometric floor tiles, a gently curved bar and bentwood stools. ”


Image for article: Chocolate pots with whisky cream


Chocolate pots with whisky cream

“This is a great example of a recipe that can really highlight the quality of chocolate. Too often, chocolate gets piled up with other flavours. Here you really taste the nuance – the different notes in the chocolate. Because it’s cooked at a lower temperature, these flavours are not damaged.”


Image for article: The Sparsholt Affair

Alan Hollinghurst
The Sparsholt Affair

Image for article: Suburbia

Jeremy Chambers

Image for article: The Quantum Astrologer’s Handbook

Michael Brooks
The Quantum Astrologer’s Handbook


Image for article: Birth injuries


Birth injuries

The first step to helping new mothers cope with the physical and psychological damage of injuries sustained during childbirth is to acknowledge how commonly they occur.

Image for article: Russell Brand’s AA reform plan


Russell Brand’s AA reform plan

Is comedian and author Russell Brand’s repackaging of Alcoholics Anonymous for the masses just entertaining his messiah complex? Or is he truly aiming to be a global ‘mentor’?

Image for article: Taking a punt: Lachlan Edwards, 25, American footballer


Taking a punt: Lachlan Edwards, 25, American footballer

American footballer Lachlan Edwards on how a chance moment of boredom led to a career in the NFL, and why he steers clear of social media.

The Quiz

1. What was the name of NASA’s most recent moon mission? (Bonus point for naming the year in which it occurred.)
2. American feminist and writer Betty Friedan’s 1963 book was titled The Feminine …?
3. Boxer Jake LaMotta, who died aged 95 last month, was best known by what nickname?
4. Which Shakespeare play begins: “O for a Muse of fire, that would ascend/ The brightest heaven of invention”?
5. The flag of which European nation is blue, black and white?
6. Who wrote the Adele hit “Make You Feel My Love”? 
7. What musical tool, patented in 1815, is used to measure tempo?
8. Cambria is the mediaeval Latin name for which British country?
9. What breed of dog is the cartoon character Marmaduke?
10. What were the winning margins in the 2017 AFL and NRL grand finals?

Click through for answers.



“I attended an Australian themed house-warming party where guests went as icons of prominent Australian identities.”

Kerri-Anne DooleyThe Liberal National Party candidate for Redcliffe explains how she came to post a photograph of herself with a man in blackface. He had taken the “Australian theme” literally and come as “racist”.


“There are cameras, autocues, microphones, monitors, producers and all the things you need to actually create television programs.”

Andrew Bolt

The broadcaster responds to a piece in The Saturday Paper describing his troll-like studio under the stairs of a Melbourne office building as “makeshift”. It is true he has cameras and producers; the only things he lacks are journalistic integrity and an audience.


“I haven’t had the phone calls, but I guess that’s the nature of the beast.”

Tilman RuffThe co-founder of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons confirms Malcolm Turnbull did not call after he won the Nobel peace prize. Turnbull did call to congratulate an Australian kid playing ice hockey in America. Seriously.


“One of the most powerful features of VR is empathy.”

Mark ZuckerbergThe Facebook founder defends a virtual reality tour he took of hurricane-damaged Puerto Rico. Some might argue simulation is the opposite of empathy, but they probably don’t make their fortunes harvesting the data of the living.


“I don’t want a quota system – ever – that locks a good bloke out of doing his job.”

Amanda VanstoneThe former Howard government minister rejects calls for mandated representation of women in seats. Speaking of good blokes, she was dropped from cabinet for Kevin Andrews, who used her immigration portfolio for the exclusive purpose of demonising African refugees.


“I think one of the greatest of all terms I’ve come up with is ‘fake’.”

Donald TrumpThe United States president tells a Christian news network that he invented the term “fake news”. The fact it dates from the late 1800s doesn’t dissuade him: so do his sexual politics.