opinion

opinion

editorial December 14, 2019

This is an emergency

We don’t know for sure if Nero played violin while Rome burnt. If it did happen, it was likely a different instrument, perhaps a kithara. But that other question – of whether a leader could be so frivolous and uncaring in the face of such catastrophe – was answered this week by Scott Morrison.

environment December 14, 2019

PM’s clouded judgement on climate

On a day when thick, acrid smoke made Australia’s largest city virtually uninhabitable, the prime minister claimed climate policy success. Scott Morrison told a news conference – which had been called not to respond to the crisis but to discuss the...

immigration December 14, 2019

Australia should lead way on refugees

Next week, the first United Nations Global Refugee Forum will take place, where member states will try to co-ordinate a response to the largest global refugee crisis since World War II. It is the first step towards a necessary international...

letters December 14, 2019

Indigenous numbers beat Lambie’s

Senator Jacqui Lambie (Mike Seccombe, “Lambie’s secret medevac bargain”, December 7-13) only got 31,383 primary votes, and her preferences made up the Tasmanian senate quota, which at the last election was 50,285 votes. So 50,285 voters gave her a...

diary December 14, 2019

Gadfly: Houston calling

What a miracle it was that Brian Houston, leader of the Hillbilly Church and spiritual adviser to Schmo Morrison, managed to get his White House ban lifted. There he was inside the cabinet room, no less, announcing he had prayed for the Pussy Grabber, presumably asking God to remedy his bone spurs.

politics December 7, 2019

Playing hide and seek on medevac deal

Scott Morrison ended the parliamentary year with a win he so desperately needed. Gone in a cloud of bluff and bravado is the compassionate medevac law that gave doctors the major role in transferring sick refugees to Australia for treatment. The...

law & crime December 7, 2019

Underpaid workers and wage theft

The recent mea culpa by Woolworths of a decade-long underpayment of thousands of its employees came as an embarrassment to the workplace regulator, the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO). The record-breaking underpayment of $300 million to some 5700...

editorial December 7, 2019

Missing in action

The prime minister speaks of taking action. “Practical, meaningful action.” To buoy our economy, protect our land, lower emissions and create new jobs. On Thursday, as parliament hurtled to a close for the year, he took action – moving ruthlessly to push his union-busting bill through the house of representatives once more, undeterred by last week’s shock defeat in the senate.

diary December 7, 2019

Gadfly: Smoking out a reality check

Citizens of Sydney and nearby parts wake each morning to the smell of their environment going up in smoke. Trees, leaves, animals, fences and homes are ablaze. The sky is a sinister colour, the rivers are empty, the air is dangerous, the oceans are filled with junk, islands are disappearing, the Earth is on its knees and the price of bread has gone up.

letters December 7, 2019

Time to work together

Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu challenges a regressive colonial mindset (Rick Morton, “Bolt, Pascoe and the culture wars”, November 30–December 6) in fundamental ways. His thorough research highlights the shallow mythology of “pioneers toiling in a harsh...

editorial November 30, 2019

In a Taylor spin

The boys in the photo are still wearing their tuxedo jackets as they dive, arms tangled together, through the bonfire, and crash to the ground, unsinged. Others strip to their underwear to make the leap. One, perhaps not so lucky, is doused with a fire extinguisher by his peers. In the background, their boat is engulfed in flames, embers streaking the black night.