topic

politics June 23, 2018

Turnbull’s aspirational targets

It was John Howard’s favourite word and now Malcolm Turnbull has latched on to it like a drowning man lunging for a life raft. “We’re not mystified by [aspiration],” he said this week. “We recognise it, we embrace it.” Had the prime minister stuck...

politics June 23, 2018

What is political correctness?

My brother’s arms are rigid with muscle. He’s wearing maroon trackies and a local footy jersey that shimmers in the sun, his fade a silver band around his head, every inch of him a typical Leb. We’re standing outside his house in Chester Hill, by...

politics June 16, 2018

Parliament fixes its focus on the election

All is fair in love and war, and the same is true in elections. Whatever it takes to win. That is the context for the next two sitting weeks of the federal parliament. There are strong indications this could be the last time the parliament meets...

media June 16, 2018

Murdoch and Trump, sons of oligarchy

Fans of Rupert Murdoch will be relieved to know he and wife Jerry Hall enjoyed a date night at Scott’s in London’s Mayfair this week. Looking like Stanley Tucci’s benign granddad in a bright blue suit and trainers, friends were relieved to see the...

rural June 9, 2018

The latest Barnaby Joyce fallout

This past week marks a watershed in Australian politics. Politicians’ private lives are no longer off limits. We have arrived at the same place as the United States. But unlike the Americans, it isn’t coming from a puritan tradition; it’s coming...

politics June 9, 2018

Michaelia Cash and Shorten’s factions

Your correspondent has previously gone on record describing Barnaby Joyce as a big-hatted toby jug the colour of ham. In Sky News “Outsider” Rowan Dean, I’ve seen both a wet, upturned ugg boot and an explosion in a woolshed. So it is to be hoped...

environment June 2, 2018

Barnaby Joyce wreaks havoc again

The exasperation in the government is palpable. “The only thing anyone is talking about this week is the Barnaby Joyce soap opera,” was the reaction of one fed-up backbencher. But it is not only the distraction that is the issue; it is the spectre...

immigration June 2, 2018

Manus Island and post-traumatic stress

No matter how hard or how long I take to try to comprehend it, the pieces of the ghastly jigsaw will never fit together. Every day, my imagination takes me wandering, but each time I find myself back where I began. It is impossible to see the full...

politics May 26, 2018

Pauline Hanson’s need for attention

Pauline Hanson sees herself as an Australian Joan of Arc. The saviour of a nation under siege from crippling debt, excessive spending and immigrants, neglectful of self-funded retirees, and abused by multinational energy companies. Worse, a nation...

ir May 26, 2018

Labour failures in the arts industry

It’s gauche to complain about money as an arts worker. After all, we’re so lucky to be here in the first place. We may work too much, but we do it because we want the work to be the best it can be. We may be unpaid, or underpaid, but we love this...

politics May 19, 2018

Byelections beware

Truth, they say, is the first casualty of war. And make no mistake, the government is in the battle of its life. Malcolm Turnbull is doing whatever it takes to regain a political ascendancy he has not had over the Opposition since last year’s...