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immigration February 16, 2019

Morrison doubles down on security

What a week for the Morrison minority government. It started with the prime minister promising to keep Australians safe and secure. It ended with him and his government looking less assured they will be around long enough to deliver. Tuesday’s...

immigration February 16, 2019

A bill of human rights

The Australian parliament has taken decisive action to ensure sick refugees held in indefinite detention on Manus Island and Nauru receive prompt and proper medical treatment. Prime Minister Scott Morrison lost the first government vote in the house...

politics February 9, 2019

The beginning of the end game

Australia’s part-time federal parliament resumes next week, with just 10 sitting days scheduled before an election in May. To say the government is running scared would be an understatement. Equally, to say Labor is calmly in cruise control is wrong...

environment February 9, 2019

The Stop Adani Convoy

I am 74 and acutely aware that every minute of every day our planet is hotter than when I was a boy, due to the burning of fossil fuels. Storms, droughts and bushfires are all the worse, as predicted 30 years ago. Yet the rate of burning of fossil...

media February 9, 2019

The demise of independent media

After last year’s federal leadership spill, the newly anointed prime minister, Scott Morrison, wasted no time asserting his deeply conservative convictions. After a hand-wringing “report” in The Daily Telegraph about training teachers how to respond...

politics February 2, 2019

A trip down memory pain

Scott Morrison wants us to forget why he is prime minister. Instead, he assured a national TV audience he was “getting on with it”. The problem is his own MPs, party members and supporters – and the electorate – remain vividly aware of the turmoil...

health February 2, 2019

Opting out of My Health Record

I remember one warm evening in 2003, when I was still a medical student based in the emergency department of a major metropolitan hospital. An elderly woman walked in to the waiting room and collapsed. The team transferred her to a resuscitation bay...

politics January 26, 2019

Foolish Endeavours

The Morrison government this week did its best to relive the shipwreck that Captain James Cook suffered almost 250 years ago. The prime minister spent much of the week in the run-up to Australia Day trying to reignite the culture wars and restart an...

indigenous affairs January 26, 2019

Bloody Australia Day

When I wrote my debut novel, Terra Nullius , back in 2015, I couldn’t have imagined it would lead to January becoming a month during which I cannot breathe. It is January when I am busiest. While kids are on school holidays, and their parents take...

politics December 22, 2018

Morrison Broad-sided

Scott Morrison disappeared from view for most of the week. He was in the Middle East, visiting our remnant military still trying to mop up after the miscalculation 15 years ago of joining the invasion of Iraq. But in many ways the TV news pictures...

indigenous affairs December 22, 2018

Australia Day: Past, present and future

Noel Pearson says there are three narratives that make Australia – the story of the longest continuous living culture on Earth; the tale of the British colonial project and the institutions that have helped shaped our society; and the narrative of...