Opinion May 25, 2019

Bri Lee
Time to reform Queensland consent laws

On or about December 13, 2003, a man named Basil Adam Soloman consumed approximately “a carton of stubbies of full-strength beer … a dozen cans of rum and cola, and about five cones of cannabis” before initiating intercourse with a …

Opinion May 18, 2019

Stan Grant
The Uluru Statement is a source of hope

The man who loomed up beside me was like the north Queenslander from central casting. He had big canecutter’s hands, and a neck burnt red from the sun, which may also have reflected his politics. “You can have all the government-paid steak …

Opinion May 11, 2019

Danielle Wood
Major parties diverge on economy

In any other election, Australia’s headline economic figures would have the incumbent popping champagne corks. Twenty-eight years of uninterrupted economic growth, unemployment at 5 per cent, record-low interest rates and a budget in balance are …

Opinion May 4, 2019

David Ritter
Australians want leadership on climate

Earlier this year, I stood on the banks of the Darling River on a 39-degree day and heard the story of the Menindee fish kill from Dick, a local retiree who had witnessed the stinking carnage of a million dead and dying animals. “That night, …

Opinion April 20, 2019

Jill Abramson
Murdoch plays the Trump card

Rupert Murdoch is friendly with many world leaders, but the octogenarian media baron has always wanted to be close to an American president. Now he is. According to a former Fox executive, Murdoch talks on the phone to Donald Trump so frequently there …

Opinion April 27, 2019

A.J. Brown
Matters of trust in public office

The nation will soon head to the polls with public integrity a higher-profile issue than perhaps ever before in Australian history. The two major parties, however, seem to be the last people in the country to realise this. It’s been more than …

Opinion April 13, 2019

Paddy Manning
The funding gap on education

If you’ve lost track of the frustrating schools funding debate lately, it’s time to start paying attention. The difference between the offerings of the two major political parties at the federal election is sharp and it boils down to one number …

paul bongiorno

Opinion May 25, 2019

Reserve Bank ends Coalition celebration

Along with the rest of the nation, Scott Morrison could scarcely believe it. His mother told journalists a lot of prayers went into the shock defeat of Labor, and her jubilant son told the cheering party faithful he had “always believed in miracles”. …

Opinion May 11, 2019

Murdoch papers give Shorten his moment

Labor has been the frontrunner in the published opinion polls for the past three years. This week was no different, with the tightening since the election was called reaching a plateau. But Bill Shorten has supplied a powerful campaign moment in an otherwise …

Opinion May 4, 2019

Nowhere for Scott Morrison to hide

How much easier would life be for Scott Morrison if he was a Liberal prime minister seeking his third term in government? He could point to the delivery of an agenda outlined back in 2013 and his leadership of a united, cohesive team of senior ministers …


Opinion May 25, 2019

Pipe dreams

The Australian Dream was once a home you owned with a car in the driveway. It was the existence promised by Robert Menzies. The basic aspiration was for comfort, a place in the community, a sense of security. Very quietly, John Howard updated that vision. The houses became McMansions. The aspirations became exceptional.

Opinion May 18, 2019

Time to choose

Both leaders have attempted to cloak themselves in the charisma of their predecessors in this campaign. Scott Morrison with Menzies, then Howard. Bill Shorten first with Keating, now Whitlam. Neither has managed to breathe life into the public imagination in the way these leaders did. The way Bob Hawke, who passed away on Thursday, was able to do so effortlessly – with his extroversion and his boundless energy.

Opinion May 11, 2019

Equal measures

In rebuking The Daily Telegraph’s editorial about his mother, Ann, Bill Shorten conjured a rare moment in Australian politics. He said: “My mum would want me to say to older women in Australia that just because you’ve got grey hair, just because you didn’t go to a special private school, just because you don’t go to the right clubs, just because you’re not part of some backslapping boys’ club doesn’t mean you should give up.” It is not rare, of course, for male politicians to relate the discriminations faced by women to their own families, to flatten to the personal: I wouldn’t want this to happen to my daughter/my wife/my mother. The test for Shorten, if elected, is how broadly his empathy can be cast.


Opinion May 25, 2019

Intensive prayer

One of Gadfly’s field agents who looks after dustbins close to Horizon Church in the Sutherland Shire discovered a prayer scribbled on some prime ministerial letterhead. In the interests of religious freedom, we’ve decided to share it with you: O God, how good are you? You have cleared our land of pestilence and plague and like Canaan, the son of Ham, we rose up to smite those wanting to rid you, O Lord, of your imputations that you gave us when you cleansed the money changers from the temple. It may have been your only begotten son who did that, but you knowest from where I come.

Opinion May 18, 2019

Cast from the past

You’ve got to admire the way the Nasty Party steadfastly wheels out Little Winston to wave, grin and hug people during election campaigns. He’s a reminder of things past and in a climate change election it’s good to be reminded that Winston for such a long time was a climate denier (aka sceptic). He resisted the Kyoto Protocol and stood against the implementation of legally binding carbon reduction targets.

Opinion May 11, 2019

Egging to differ

The history of citizens egging their politicians is long and distinguished. When Billy Hughes was egged at Warwick, Queensland, in 1917 he ordered the local copper to arrest the offender, Patrick Brosnan. Senior Sergeant Kenny refused, saying that the PM had no jurisdiction over him – hence we got the Commonwealth Police, which morphed into the Australian Federal Police.


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Opinion May 25, 2019

Spirit didn’t move the voters

Your editorial noted “it was an election set piece dreamed up by the most earnest of Labor strategists” (“Time to choose”, May 18-24) as now former Labor leader Bill Shorten invoked the ghostly spirit of Edward Gough Whitlam, QC, …

Opinion May 18, 2019

Election grants

“Promise land” (Karen Middleton, May 11-17) left me even more despondent (is that even possible?) about probity and pork barrels, and prompts me to think: “My Kingdom, my Kingdom, a car park/Scout hall for my Kingdom”. – …

Opinion May 11, 2019

Missing the points

It is clear that consideration of morality is lacking in this federal election. There are two outstanding matters, neither being properly addressed by the media or the two major parties. The first is the imprisonment and torture of asylum seekers. Kevin …