Paul Bongiorno

diary May 1, 2021

Gadfly: Are you there, God? It’s me, Morrison

It has long been believed that when God speaks, it is only to prophets, poets and madmen. Now we can add Australian prime ministers to that list. While attending the Australian Christian Churches conference on the Gold Coast last week, Scott...

religion May 1, 2021

Politics, Morrison and faith

It may console some Australians to know that their prime minister is doing God’s work. Millions of others are more likely to be confused, and even flabbergasted. Yet courtesy of a scratchy YouTube video, shot at a Pentecostal conference on the Gold...

health May 1, 2021

Stranded citizens an international disgrace

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced a pause on direct passenger flights between India and Australia, with consideration of further flights to be made by May 15. Australians stranded in India, who make up almost a third of those now...

editorial May 1, 2021

Hint and miss for climate targets

There is nothing clever about hinting at a target. Scott Morrison can smile and insinuate, but to the climate it makes no difference. His audio can be muted at a summit and it doesn’t matter because he’s not saying anything. This is how he governs...

diary April 24, 2021

Gadfly: ‘A pretty f***ing good milkshake’

Not since John Travolta asked to try the $5 milkshake Uma Thurman ordered at Jack Rabbit Slim’s has anyone cared so much about the cost of a milkshake. But it turns out that prices have gone up a bit since 1994. Now, if you want a milkshake to bring...

environment April 3, 2021

A foreign policy for the climate

Britain’s Conservative government last month declared the fight against climate change its top diplomatic priority after a comprehensive review of its foreign, defence and security policy. In the United States, Joe Biden has mainstreamed climate...

environment April 3, 2021

A foreign policy for the climate

Britain’s Conservative government last month declared the fight against climate change its top diplomatic priority after a comprehensive review of its foreign, defence and security policy. In the United States, Joe Biden has mainstreamed climate...

editorial April 3, 2021

Home without a heart

“You have every right to come home,” the prime minister told the more than 30,000 Australians stranded overseas in December last year. He promised to get as many as possible – if not all – home by Christmas. In the months since, the numbers have hardly fallen.

law & crime April 3, 2021

Government reset on women

All governments have horror stretches; the Morrison government is certainly no exception, as the past six weeks attest. But it is how governments deal with these political crises that can seal or save their fate. The Americans have a colourful turn...

diary March 27, 2021

Gadfly: Bloody dull Mofo

It’s hard for art world provocateurs these days, especially with all the competition from Canberra. Parliament is so shocking that the populace is evolving to be more shockproof than an old Nokia 3310. So, artists must think of more creative ways in which they can truly disturb our sensibilities. Piss Christ? Done. A self-portrait made from 10 pints of the artist’s own blood? Please, that’s so 1991. A shark preserved in formaldehyde?

 

editorial March 27, 2021

Taking the lead

It is difficult to keep ahead of federal parliament’s cascade of scandals. Even for the prime minister, who has been dragged into this fray he so desperately wanted to keep at arm’s length. He is visibly flustered; perhaps he truly did not realise the rot went so deep. But ignorance is not an excuse, not for a leader of a country.