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News

The Hanson plot to kill the ABC

“Pauline Hanson’s party was made a promise by the government: support our legislation benefiting our big media mates now, and we’ll help you whack the ABC later.”

This week’s failed senate attempt to tighten control over the national broadcaster highlights the sway One Nation has over the Coalition.

News

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News

Fighting trade in human remains antiquities

Online trading in human antiquities has been difficult to prosecute, but a legislative review recommends new offences targeting the buyers, and expanded powers for border force.

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News

The Coalition’s national energy guarantee

“Privately, senior Labor figures say the proposed plan’s structure – bare though it is at the moment – would potentially transition without major disruption to a full-blown emissions trading scheme under a future Labor government.”

While the government’s proposed national energy guarantee has been criticised as being more about saving Malcolm Turnbull’s leadership than good policy, has the prime minister smuggled in a carbon price under the noses of his conservative colleagues?

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News

Harvey Weinstein’s protective PR racket

“Accusers would be slandered in tabloids and the entertainment press; lawyers would encircle, offering vinegar or honey; publicists made silk purses. Few in the industry were left with much doubt that Weinstein could, if so moved, destroy them.”

As more of his victims come forward, the means by which Harvey Weinstein used influence and inducements to conceal his offending is revealed.

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News

Scott Ludlam’s legacy

After Greens senator Scott Ludlam’s forced resignation from parliament, following the revelation of his dual citizenship, an ex-staffer cleans out his office and reflects on his legacy.

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World

Is Xi the new Mao or China’s Brezhnev?

Another term likely for hawkish Shinzō Abe. Trump puts Iran deal in hands of congress. Jacinda Ardern becomes NZ's prime minister. Tsar Nicholas scandal shows Putin loyalty.

Opinion

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Opinion

Richard Cooke
Australia’s welcome mat for right-wing trolls

“Milo’s year-ending whistlestop is called the Troll Academy Tour, and the baffled reaction of the Sunrise hosts recalled a more innocent time, when alt-right figures weren’t the warm-up act for the Cash Cow. You can chart the change in mood just through the nastier tabloids. ”

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Opinion

Paul Bongiorno
Nervous energy on power plan

“There is an irony in all of this. Turnbull moved away from the CET because Abbott and many in the party room thought it was too close to Labor’s policy. Ditching it was to emphasise product differentiation and, according to government insiders, their best chance of getting back in the game. What happens if Labor accepts the worked-up version of the national energy guarantee?”

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Diary

Gadfly
Just wild about Harry

Invariably Gadfly turns to Grouper Greg Sheridan in The Catholic Boys Daily for thought leadership. Grouper’s endorsement of Admiral Harry Harris, the United States commander in the Pacific, as Barking Dog Trump’s ambassador to Australia, could not have been more reassuring.


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

Cartoon

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Editorial
One-eyed bandits

The relationship is about a curious orthodoxy regarding casinos. Politics behaves as if it needs them. It has no appetite for regulation. It has refused decades of advocacy for reform. That is why licences are given with extraordinary concessions, why planning laws are modified or public lands leased for dollar coins. It is why you can smoke in gaming rooms.

Letters

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Gun lobby runs old arguments

Libertarian senator David Leyonhjelm, interviewed by Mike Seccombe (“The gun nuts in our parliament”, October 14-20) helpfully reiterates that mantra of the gun lobby: there are dangerous people, …

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Taking exception to Australia’s position

Your front-page article about David Leyonhjelm and gun laws repeats the mantra “Australian gun laws [were] generally considered the strongest in the world” at the time …

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Culture

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Culture

Actress Pamela Rabe on tackling Ibsen

Following the success of her Glass Menagerie with Eamon Flack, Pamela Rabe reunites with the director to explore the knottiness of Ibsen’s Ghosts. “I’m never one to sit around and wait for the phones to ring,” she says. “I love working in the theatre, and I work a lot in the theatre.”

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Theatre

Simon Stone’s ‘Yerma’

Billie Piper’s performance in Lorca’s tragedy Yerma caps a powerful production at the Young Vic for the ‘antipodean Orson Welles’, Simon Stone.

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Portrait

Jane Shakespeare and the Fig Tree Children

“Jane, Jeremy, and their teenage son, Harry, have taken their role one step further: they have invited Sierra Leone woman Manjia and her five-year-old son Kingsley to live in their home. After working for 15 years as a nurse, including throughout the Ebola crisis, Manjia’s dream was to study a bachelor of nursing overseas and return to her country to train others.”

Food

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Food

Lamb cutlets and selected spring greens

“Green and pink. Pink and green. Two of my favourite spring colours. Whether it be the beginnings of the berry season, the soft downy centres of broad bean pods, or the subtlety of spring lamb, they are colours that keep reappearing in the palette of my spring dishes.”

Life

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Science

Memory systems and ancient knowledge

Studies of how cultures without writing maintained their scientific knowledge in ritual, dance and song have led to a better appreciation of their complex understanding of the world

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Travel

Port Arthur, Tasmania

Amid southern Tasmania’s prison ruins, the silence many find so serene is the same silence that broke dispirited convicts.

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Sport

Champion stayer: Linda Meech, 37, jockey

Linda Meech on her long career as a gypsy jockey and how she recovered mentally after a serious race fall.

Books

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Richard Flanagan
First Person

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Amit Chaudhuri
Friend of My Youth

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Alan Burdick
Why Time Flies

The Quiz

1. Which R.E.M. album is to be rereleased as a 25th-anniversary edition next month?
2. The River Liffey runs through which national capital?
3. Misty Copeland is best known for her work in which field of the arts?
4. What element, beginning with ‘n’, has the atomic number 10?
5. Name the author of the 2017 novel A Legacy of Spies?
6. Monument Valley is a desert region on the border of which two US states?
7. There are how many principal human blood types? (Bonus points for naming them.)
8. The Traveling Wilburys comprised Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne, Roy Orbison and who?
9. Which country is set to become the first Asian nation to legalise same-sex marriage after a constitutional court ruling in May?
10. How many years did O.  J. Simpson serve in prison for armed robbery and kidnapping?

Quotes

MARRIAGE

“This isn’t over. There are five million Australians yet to vote and the NO campaign is appealing to every one of them!”

Tony AbbottThe former prime minister responds to a count showing the “Yes” vote for marriage equality has all but been carried. The postal survey joins Matlock Police, B. A. Santamaria’s last broadcast and the year 1953 on the list of things Abbott refuses to accept are “over”.

TELEVISION

“For whatever reason she won’t be doing that anymore. It is safe to say we are all a little shocked.”

Karl StefanovicThe Channel Nine host farewells his co-star, Lisa Wilkinson, who left after the network refused to pay her the same as him. Stefanovic gets an extra $900,000 in his contract for oafishness and pretending to care about gender equality.

GAMBLING

“Many laws have possibly been broken and the truth will not be uncovered without a parliamentary inquiry.”

Andrew WilkieThe independent MP tables evidence of alleged exploitation at Crown casino. Apparently the poker machines were rigged to increase losses, even more than usual.

EXTREMISTS

“I thought getting involved in that kind of thing would be comradeship.”

Kevin WilshawThe National Front organiser comes out as gay and Jewish. It’s like they always say: you can’t trust a Nazi.

RIGHTS

“I think it is better for countries to be on the council, to be subject to scrutiny, to be accountable and more transparent.”

Julie BishopThe foreign minister celebrates Australia’s election to the UN Human Rights Council where the country is only the fourth-worst human rights abuser after Saudi Arabia, China and the Philippines.

EUTHANASIA

“Dying is a complex matter, and its complexity can never be solved by a single legislative bill, which of its essence, puts a low premium on life.”

Paul KeatingThe former prime minister makes the case against voluntary assisted dying laws in Victoria. In fairness, prime ministers are doomed in later life to extended resuscitation efforts and the kind of palliative care only offered in newspaper columns.