February 17 – 23, 2018

Cardinal George Pell in the Vatican.


Church blames fatigue for redress failure

“Attention dropped off unless there was a four-letter word involved: P-E-L-L. Any other case study didn’t get the coverage. Fatigue has been wrought.”

The Catholic Church says governments see no urgency in establishing child abuse redress schemes as interest wanes after the royal commission.


Image for article: Turnbull caught by Hobson’s Joyce


Turnbull caught by Hobson’s Joyce

“One way or another, Barnaby’s cactus. It’s just a matter of when.”

As Barnaby Joyce clings to the Nationals leadership, his Coalition colleagues watch and wait for further fallout from his indiscretions.


Morrison’s pursuit of Trump economics

“The IMF suggested the tax cuts would provide a near-term sugar hit to the US economy. Then, a few years from now, about 2022, would come a sugar crash, as the US government was forced to deal with the Trump deficit. ”

All the evidence suggests Treasurer Scott Morrison’s zeal to adopt Trump-style corporate tax cuts will not deliver increased investment and wage rises, but could create huge budget deficits in the future.


The failures of Closing the Gap

“The difference difference in life expectancy for Indigenous people is 10 years. The target was to close that gap by 2031. The report admits that this critical target is not going to be met; in fact, in the past 10 years, they cannot even claim a one-year improvement in the difference.”

Image for article: Inside Protect Victoria


Inside Protect Victoria

While Protect Victoria promotes itself as a non-political and non-racist group, its biased portrayal of crime is increasing fear and making it a recruitment hub for far-right radicals.

Image for article: Continuing wars within wars in Syria


Continuing wars within wars in Syria

Benjamin Netanyahu facing corruption claims; North Korea in Winter Olympics charm offensive; Harry Harris the new ambassador to Australia.

Australia's No.1 news podcast.



Omar Sakr
Representation and diversity

“As a marginalised poet beginning to have some small measure of success, I’m not supposed to talk about this. I am supposed to take what is given, speak as wound, as tragic past come good, and if I should succeed, treat it as the accidental byproduct of a system that took pity on me, never something I had a hand in making.”


Paul Bongiorno
Joyce ruins Turnbull’s turnaround

“It will take quite some work to restore credibility to the Nationals as the “family values” party. If the party room sticks by Joyce, they are endorsing his hypocrisy – nowhere more on show than in his support of the “No” case on marriage equality. He spoke at an Australian Christian Lobby rally about the need to give children the stability of a committed, heterosexual relationship.”


Richard Ackland
Gadfly: Holy owned subsidiaries

Letters, Cartoon & Editorial


ReadCartoon image, links to full cartoon page

Barnaby rubble

When it’s all over, Barnaby Joyce’s clearest contribution to Australian public life will likely be a rule that says ministers cannot have sex with their staff. The second most senior member of this government – the deputy prime minister – is a politician whose talents add up to a total of nothing.


Foreign interference and the TPP

A major function of the proposed new national security legislation on “espionage and foreign interference” is to “introduce new offences relating to foreign interference with Australia’s …

Dissenters and media under attack

George Orwell’s Big Brother would have been proud: “War is Peace. Freedom is Slavery. Ignorance is Strength.” The government’s National Security Legislation Amendment (Espionage …

Read More


The author with Christopher Hitchens (left) in Romania, 1989.


Christopher Hitchens: The lost interview

Writer Christopher Hitchens first met Peter Wilmoth in 1989, covering the Romanian revolution. In 2010, two weeks before Hitchens was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer, the pair caught up for lunch in Sydney. Hitchens died 18 months later, and the tape of that conversation was missing until now. “I know I get very oppressed by the way that every day is more and more subtracted out of less and less.”

Image for article: ‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’


‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’

As a fading diva in Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, Annette Bening reminds the reviewer of why he fell in love with film in the first place.


My grandmother’s death

“As a child, my grandmother played tennis, ate kangaroo tail soup and drove a pony and sulky. As a young woman, she imported fine English china and Venetian glass. She was one of the few female automobile drivers in the 1930s, and still drove in her 80s, transporting ‘the old people’ and delivering Meals on Wheels.”


Image for article: Grilled rib eye


Grilled rib eye

“The most frequent question I get from friends and diners is how to cook a piece of steak. There’s no foolproof recipe or technique. You have to be responsive to the cut, because there are so many variables – how long it’s been aged, the cut, the heat of the barbecue itself.”


Image for article: The Melody

Jim Crace
The Melody

Image for article: The Passengers

Eleanor Limprecht
The Passengers

Image for article: Redemption Point

Candice Fox
Redemption Point


Image for article: Phú Quoc, Vietnam


Phú Quoc, Vietnam

Vietnam’s efforts to attract tourists to its rapidly multiplying resorts on Phú Quoc, in the Gulf of Thailand, risk making the island a victim of its own success.

Image for article: Access to medicinal cannabis


Access to medicinal cannabis

Although medicinal cannabis is now legal in Australia, under tight controls, the science of its risks and benefits is still not settled and doctors are reluctant to prescribe it.

Image for article: Ice queen: Kailani Craine, 19, figure skater


Ice queen: Kailani Craine, 19, figure skater

Kailani Craine on her love of ice skating, making it to the PyeongChang Winter Olympics and always being asked about Tonya Harding.

The Quiz

1. Kigali is the capital of which African nation?
2. Is language controlled by the left or right hemisphere of the brain?
3. Who composed the one-movement orchestral piece Boléro? (Bonus point for naming the composer’s nationality.)
4. Orang-utans are native to which two countries?
5. Name the lord mayor of Melbourne who recently resigned amid sexual harassment allegations?
6. Which teams became BBL07 and WBBL03 champions this month?
7. Quercus suber is commonly known as … oak?
8. Nicole Kidman has won three Logie Awards for her work in two television series with place names in their titles. Name them.
9. The Battle of Old Baldy took place during which war?
10. What does pulchritudinous mean?

Click through for answers.



“Ms Campion was the only person interviewed for the role because she had the skills and experience and she was well known, of course.”

Matt CanavanThe minister for resources and northern Australia explains why Barnaby Joyce’s partner was chosen to work in his office. The senator was more convincing when he was just blaming his mum for stuff.


“It’s definitely not good for business.”

Reshan MuthukrishnaThe owner of a Rockdale physiotherapy clinic in front of which former Comanchero bikie chief Mahmoud “Mick” Hawi was murdered reflects on the incident. Hawi was shot at least six times.


“I honestly think he may have a brain tumour. He’s always been insufferable.”

D’arcy WretzkyThe Smashing Pumpkins bassist reflects on frontman Billy Corgan ahead of a reunion tour. She’s not a neurologist, but she’s not wrong either.


“The NSW ICAC is much better at destroying people’s lives than it is at uncovering real criminality.”

Tony AbbottThe former prime minister resists calls for a federal anti-corruption body. If you can’t corruptly influence mining leases and family business opportunities, what’s left to live for?


“The president along with the entire administration take domestic violence very seriously.”

Sarah Huckabee SandersThe White House press secretary defends Trump aide Rob Porter. According to two former wives, Porter takes domestic violence particularly seriously.


“He got expelled for disciplinary reasons, I don’t know the specifics.”

Scott IsraelThe Broward County sheriff identifies the gunman in a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, the 18th US school shooting this year. At least 17 people were killed.