Opinion May 30, 2020

Patricia Turner
Collaboration on Closing the Gap

It was only three months ago that the prime minister stood up in parliament to make his latest report on the progress of Closing the Gap. Just two of seven targets, he revealed, are on track to be met by 2025. The gap itself is a difficult concept. …

Opinion May 23, 2020

Imran Mohammad
Resettled refugees in Covid-19 lockdown

In 2018, my life changed forever. From being stateless, after seven years held in refugee detention, I became a permanent resident of the United States. The outcome is beyond words. Building trust in humanity was the most difficult part of my new life. …

Opinion May 16, 2020

Bill Bowtell
The risks as lockdowns loosen

This weekend, Australians are emerging from the lockdown that placed the country into quasi-hibernation for almost two months. As we survey the landscape, the physical geography does not bear the scars of more familiar Australian natural disasters – …

Opinion May 2, 2020

Jane Caro
How schools have become political pawns

As a long-term campaigner for disadvantaged students and the schools that overwhelmingly enrol them – public schools – I was gobsmacked this week by the sudden concern our federal government expressed for these students, and the risk they …

Opinion April 18, 2020

Andrew Robb
Innovation needed in mental health treatment

Struggling with your mental health confronts you. Depression, for its part, can overwhelm you with false anxieties and meaningless, torturous agitation. It can suck the joy from life and sap your energy. When you’re in that black hole, it can seem …

Opinion April 25, 2020

Leonard Blazeby
Coronavirus control in war-torn nations

Conflict doesn’t stop for a pandemic. In this way, Australia is a lucky country. We enjoy a relative peace. Beyond our shores though, there are communities that face the destructive dual perils of war and Covid-19. From Syria to South Sudan, Myanmar …

Opinion April 11, 2020

Kevin Rudd
Australia must fulfil its regional obligations

Earlier this year, I wrote that I feared the situation in China would become the reality across the rest of the world in March and April. That, unfortunately, is now what is unfolding before our very eyes. But if there is to be a third wave of this …

paul bongiorno

Opinion May 30, 2020

Unplugging the economy’s life support

At the National Press Club on Tuesday, Scott Morrison went all medical as he framed his prescription for economic recovery. Key ministers in the room smiled their nodding approval when he said: “At some point you’ve got to get your economy …

Opinion May 23, 2020

China blunders and the fallout

Just at the moment the government claimed vindication for a big win on the world stage, China ridiculed its grandstanding. A terse, one-paragraph statement from its Canberra embassy called Australia’s response “a joke”. If anything encapsulates …

Opinion May 16, 2020

Chokehold on the economy

If anybody needed reminding, the Australian economy is in deep trouble, much deeper than either the treasurer or the prime minister realised at the beginning of last month. Then, the talk was of a “snapback” from the damage of the coronavirus …


Opinion May 30, 2020

Reform agenda

First there was the ceasefire, ushered in by the pandemic. Now, Scott Morrison says, is the time for unions and the government to lay down their weapons and come to the table to negotiate the terms of the peace. As a show of good faith the prime minister has put away the stick – shelving the Ensuring Integrity Bill, for the time being. What’s being offered as a carrot is less clear.

Opinion May 23, 2020

Losing our way

“This is all about balance,” Angus Taylor says of his long-awaited technology investment road map. In reality, it is all about delay, and distraction. After nine months of work, surveying 140 technologies, the road map has managed to tell us what was already known: that solar and wind, both of which produce zero emissions, are the cheapest forms of energy. But Australia will not be taking these findings and quickly decarbonising our grid with renewables.

Opinion May 16, 2020

Radio silenced

If 2GB was a crime family – if you can imagine it – Ray Hadley would be a violent foot soldier and Alan Jones would be the plotting, vengeful don. Ben Fordham would be adopted as a favour to his parents. With Jones’s retirement, radio loses an ugly voice. It loses a little of its racism and some of its misogyny. It loses some antique slurs and curious bigotry and graphic rhetoric. Most of this will be replenished or reimagined. Like sunlight, prejudice is inexhaustible. What won’t easily be replaced, and what made Jones different, is his capacity to manipulate power.


Opinion May 30, 2020

Grouper stupor

The ABC people know a trick or two about ratings triumphs. Having Grouper Greg Sheridan on Insiders as frequently as possible is a sure-fire winner. There’s the grizzled Grouper, with his tinted locks, nice and warm in his jumper and comfy jacket, dragging more viewers to the show by extolling the virtues of fossils and pooh-poohing market mechanisms to put a price on them: “Coal is still the best option for Australia; the second-best option would be gas; nuclear would be a very good option.”

Opinion May 23, 2020

The inking person’s judge

It’s not often that retired judges get much of a sendoff when they peg out. Invariably, a few grizzled legal types wince at the thought they may be next as they read death notices in the bar newsletter. Not so for David Levine, a man with one of the largest private libraries and book collections in the country. His departure was met with a genuine outpouring of affection from lawyers, arts administrators and literary figures.

Opinion May 16, 2020

Quiet as a church mouth

Gadfly, along with an anxious nation, was looking forward to last weekend’s Catholic Boys Daily. Surely, it would be bursting with explanations from all the favourites on how the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse got it wrong in its unredacted report on the state of Cardinal Pell’s knowledge about the Ballarat Paedophile Club.


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Opinion May 30, 2020

Politicians and envy

Margaret Simons (“The end of the university boom”, May 23-29) reports that government ministers and senior bureaucrats feel aggrieved when university vice-chancellors on $1 million salaries call on them crying poor, given that the academics’ …

Opinion May 23, 2020

Danger in numbers

Last Saturday’s lead article by Rick Morton (“How Covid-19 energised conspiracy theorists”, May 16-22) details in disturbing detail the extent of adherence to a variety of conspiracy theories fuelled by Covid-19. Morton is correct in …

Opinion May 16, 2020

In Aunty we trust

The ABC has played a vital role during the bushfire and coronavirus crises. Mike Seccombe (“Hundreds facing the sack with ABC cuts”, May 9-15) records our collective indebtedness to the ABC and its profound contribution to our collective wellbeing …