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education May 19, 2018


The bonfire of the humanities

The words are stretched across the side of the red-brick northern extension of RMIT University in Melbourne, a huge banner that could not be more succinctly self-parodic if it tried: “Don’t study problems, solve them.” The advertisement is for the...

education May 12, 2018


Ruining Gonski’s school funding plan

Those of us who believe in the primacy of the only education system open to all – namely public education – got our hopes up a few years ago. We allowed ourselves to believe that the recommendations of the 2010 Gonski review panel might mean good...

opinion May 5, 2018


Tyranny and free speech

Call it mass cognitive dissonance. All around us, the loudest proponents of free speech, in politics and the Australian media, are in many ways the most flagrantly hypocritical. These actors set a dangerous precedent: by refusing to acknowledge...

education May 12, 2018


Ruining Gonski’s school funding plan

Those of us who believe in the primacy of the only education system open to all – namely public education – got our hopes up a few years ago. We allowed ourselves to believe that the recommendations of the 2010 Gonski review panel might mean good...

immigration April 28, 2018


The failings of super-minister Dutton

Peter Dutton is arguably the most powerful person in the country. In his new ministry he has oversight for national security, for the Federal Police, Border Force and ASIO, for the law enforcement and emergency management functions of the Attorney-...

religion April 21, 2018


Hiding anger in the face of bigotry

Most nights I lie awake, pulse pounding in my neck, reliving the day or the week or the month as a white man, which is to say, unconstrained. I dream of having actually let my rage free for once, of having responded with force to the man who brushed...

indigenous affairs April 14, 2018


Royal commission into police needed

Has Victoria Police lost control over the behaviour of its members? Has it tolerated excessive force, non-compliance with ethical standards and failure of duty of care for so long that its members now regularly cross the line of legal behaviour in...

law & crime April 7, 2018


The edge of consent

When Stormy Daniels sat down with American 60 Minutes ’ Anderson Cooper to discuss her alleged affair with Donald Trump, a compelling dynamic emerged. Daniels shared near-satirical details of the encounter, such as spanking the future president with...

religion March 31, 2018


The land of the fair gone

There was an awful fascination to watching the Australian cricket captain destroy himself on the television news. It was almost as grisly as those shots of the Mad Monk kissing Hanson at her “book” launch on Tuesday, although for different reasons...

politics March 24, 2018


The case against Malcolm Turnbull

Malcolm Turnbull is two Newspolls away from a psychological reckoning: the moment he reaches the same number of consecutive losing surveys that prompted him, in 2015, to tear down Tony Abbott’s prime ministership. “The one thing that is clear about...

law & crime March 17, 2018


Old networks defending college abuse culture

This story begins in 2009, when a student of mine discovered a “pro-rape” Facebook group created by men associated with St Paul’s College, at the University of Sydney. The group was titled “Define statutory: Pro-rape, anti-consent”. One of the...