Comment

diary April 13, 2019


Gadfly: The A-Team’s heroes for hire

There’s a sense of relief that the nation is now in caretaker mode – a nice change from the usual arrangement where the affairs of state are conducted with unremitting carelessness. Gadfly has been asked to advise the Coalition on election strategy...

education April 13, 2019


The funding gap on education

If you’ve lost track of the frustrating schools funding debate lately, it’s time to start paying attention. The difference between the offerings of the two major political parties at the federal election is sharp and it boils down to one number – $...

law & crime April 6, 2019


The media and contempt of court

Not since Derryn “The Human Headline” Hinch was sent down for 50 days in 2014 for contempt of court has there been such heightened anticipation in the Australian media, as it waits to learn the fate of 36 journalists and media organisations who are...

diary April 6, 2019


Gadfly: Not beyond regional doubt

Already the leaflets from people chasing votes are flooding into citizens’ inboxes. Former Labor man Warren Mundine , now the Liberal Party pea for Gilmore, is up and at it. His email to electors claimed: “I’ve spent my entire life in regional...

diary March 30, 2019


Gadfly: Howard makes his points

There they were, Little Winston Howard and Fabulous Phil Ruddock , like two grizzled Muppets at the Liberal Party’s party at the Sofitel Sydney Wentworth hotel on Saturday night. Howard has engaged Pig Iron Bob ’s personal groomer to try to train...

politics March 30, 2019


The death of political debate

In Australia, in the decades after World War II, politicians were generally ahead of public opinion – on the mass migration program and ending the White Australia Policy, on abolishing the death penalty, divorce law reform, the decriminalisation of...

diary March 23, 2019


Gadfly: Laying it on sick

There’s so much that can make people physically sick. Army wallah and boonies Nasty Party senator Linda Reynolds told ABC viewers she was “almost physically ill” when the medivac legislation was passed by parliament. After all, it was Muslims who were on the attack in Bali, if you follow her drift. She’ll make a fine addition to Team Schmo. Other citizens were just as ill with news from New Zealand.

religion March 23, 2019


Fixing the National Redress Scheme

Although I have worked with victims of institutional abuse and their families for more than 12 years, initially through my doctoral research into sexual assault and the Catholic Church and more recently as a lawyer, I could never have imagined the...

diary March 16, 2019


Gadfly: Quill shafts for Judd

Kerri Judd, QC, the Victorian DPP, defender of the faith and protector of the courts, has possibly up to 100 media organisations and reptiles in her sights for alleged contempt. In her possession is a bristling letter from Justin Quill, whose firm, Macpherson Kelley, is acting for 53 potential media parties. This correspondence is a fallout from the Pell trial suppression orders and headlines after the cardinal’s secret conviction for “historic sexual abuse crimes”.

indigenous affairs March 16, 2019


Sobering statistics

In December last year, Aunty Tanya Day’s death in custody came to public attention with the beginning of a coronial inquest into her death. A year earlier, the Yorta Yorta grandmother was kicked off a train from Echuca to Melbourne by a V/Line staff...

diary March 9, 2019


Gadfly: The ABC of equality

What is journalism? It’s a question hacks throughout the dry and cracked land ask themselves not infrequently – hoping an answer will arrive. Fortunately, Gaven Morris, the director of Aunty ABC’s news, analysis and investigations department, gave us a clue in his Tuesday memo to the troops.