opinion

opinion

diary November 17, 2018

Gadfly: The Mitch trials begin

If you take out all the pages from The Sydney Morning Herald reporting on allegations of inappropriate touching there wouldn’t be enough newsprint to wrap a flounder. The latest revelation is that while the ABC board was at Billy Kwong’s, tucking into the saltbush cakes and crispy skin duck with Davidson’s plums, the then managing director’s back allegedly got rubbed, ickily. Litigation regarding this sort of thing is rampant.

indigenous affairs November 17, 2018

Kids on country, not in custody

When I first saw footage on Facebook of Darwin’s Don Dale detention centre in flames after a rebellion I was heartbroken and very scared for the kids inside. The video showed riot police entering the prison with shotguns and tear gas. This was...

politics November 17, 2018

Scott Morrison fails to persuade voters

The question dogging Scott Morrison as he rubs shoulders with world leaders at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Port Moresby this weekend is how long he will remain a member of this exclusive club. By his own admission, the chances...

letters November 17, 2018

More ordinary members needed

Political scientist Nick Economou’s claim that “the ordinary branch member is a big problem in political parties” in Mike Seccombe’s article on neo-Nazi infiltration of the Nationals (“Rank and defile”, November 10–16) is quite problematic. Most...

editorial November 17, 2018

Granting injustice

The euphemism in the documents calls the grants “departmental approaches”. Everywhere else in Indigenous affairs, the money has to be begged; here, it is given freely. Possibly because here it can be used to fight Indigenous interests. By Nigel Scullion’s own admission, the money was for “legal fees, effectively … to put forward a case of detriment to the land commissioner”. That is, to object to native title claims.

editorial October 20, 2018

Prisoners’ dilemma

Psychiatrist Dr Beth O’Connor was Médecins Sans Frontières’ longest-serving mental health professional on Nauru until she left the island last month: “Held in indefinite detention and effectively in a perpetual state of limbo for the last five years, these people have been stripped of any hope for a meaningful future, resulting in shocking levels of severe depression and anxiety in the population – with many having lost the will to live.”

indigenous affairs October 20, 2018

Razing the white flag

During the 18th century, a European travel writer visiting the colonies in what is now South America was astounded to stumble upon a town where a biracial governor was casually going about his business. More astounding still was how completely...

diary October 13, 2018

Gadfly: Lord and hosts

As a good Gold Coast happy clapper, the unstoppable Stuey Robert, assistant treasurer of the Commonwealth, is likely to be redeemed of all his sins – such as running up a huge internet bill for the taxpayers, or going to China to eat roast duck at the behest of a Nasty Party donor, or juggling his directorships and shareholdings in companies with interests in transportation, gold and supplements for gym bunnies. He brings to federal politics all the glamour of the Gold Coast, including his Pentecostal zeal, which he shares with his lovely wife, Chantelle, and Skin Curling SloMo.

politics October 13, 2018

Morrison’s race to the bottom

Scott Morrison and his nine-year-old daughter, Lily, had the thrill of their lives last Sunday as white-knuckle passengers in a Bathurst Supercar. They were in the capable hands of champion driver Mark Skaife who skilfully avoided the safety fences...

editorial October 13, 2018

Faith palm

Asked if he were comfortable with a child being expelled from a school because of their sexuality, he said: “It’s existing law.” This is how faith works. It is a kind of surrender to that which has already been written down. In politics, it functions as a defence of that which cannot otherwise be defended – a perfect link back to the past and to the morals that resided there.

rural October 13, 2018

How climate change policy helps farmers

Drought is ravaging the land. Large swaths of eastern Australia are experiencing some of the worst seasons on record. Frosts have wiped out large areas of crops in Western Australia, southern New South Wales and Victoria. Hail has beaten crops into...