Gadfly: Dicey business

Richard Ackland
It’s as though the entire conservative cause in our weird nation has been deracinated. The allegations against Dyson Heydon leave much havoc in their wake. His political sponsors, Little Winston Howard and the Mad Monk, look gormless, while he has blotted the escutcheons of luminous institutions...

Injustices at the High Court

Gadfly: Mad Monk’s misjudgement

Richard Ackland
After the Mad Monk’s remark that there is no evidence the court system gives Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people a terrible time, it is just as well that his bronzed bust at the Ballarat avenue of prime ministers is now sheathed in protective wrapping. A spray can of red paint also...

Griffin Theatre Company artistic director Declan Greene

Steve Dow
Four weeks after becoming the artistic director of Sydney’s Griffin Theatre Company, Declan Greene had to cancel two plays because of Covid-19. He speaks about this extraordinary challenge, his childhood flair for drama and his ambitions for the company. “I’m constantly thinking I should do more to...

Gadfly: Very pressing matters

Richard Ackland
Gadfly found himself on a V/Line train speeding from Melbourne to Bendigo for an appointment organised by the regional community legal centres to appear at a huge press freedom jamboree at the town hall. And what a turnout – with 300 of the region’s finest packing the gilded room to get insights...

Examining the second draft of religion bill

Kieran Pender
Five years after George Brandis declared ‘people have the right to be bigots’, the government wants that proposition enshrined in law.

Gadfly: Donation building

Richard Ackland
Schmo Morrison was in full marketing-man mode as he batted away accusations against forgetful Comrade Gladys Liu. Membership of a strange Chinese state propaganda machine; squillions of dollars raised at great fundraising feasts; agitation to amend the foreign investment regime so Chinese business...

Gadfly: Reinventing their spiel

Richard Ackland
“Cry Freedom” echoes through the wide, brown land as reptiles and hacks try to throw off the shackles of oppression. Some of them have been, or still are, Moloch employees whose newspapers cheered on the slate of overwrought post-September 11 national security laws that bit by bit tightened the...

Gadfly: Laying it on sick

Richard Ackland
There’s so much that can make people physically sick. Army wallah and boonies Nasty Party senator Linda Reynolds told ABC viewers she was “almost physically ill” when the medivac legislation was passed by parliament. After all, it was Muslims who were on the attack in Bali, if you follow her drift...

Gadfly: The ABC of equality

Richard Ackland
What is journalism? It’s a question hacks throughout the dry and cracked land ask themselves not infrequently – hoping an answer will arrive. Fortunately, Gaven Morris, the director of Aunty ABC’s news, analysis and investigations department, gave us a clue in his Tuesday memo to the troops.

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