law & crime March 27, 2021

Government’s bailout scuppered

The Morrison government resembles a sinking ship in one of those pirate movies where practically everything, including the cannons, is thrown overboard in an attempt to stay afloat. And there has been a good deal of ballast unloaded in this sitting...

media March 27, 2021

Dark Mofo and Union Flag

I felt elation and deflation in equal parts when a friend messaged me that the Dark Mofo festival in Tasmania had cancelled the controversial performance Union Flag by artist Santiago Sierra. Like so many other First Nations peoples exposed to Dark...

law & crime March 20, 2021

A deadly silence on Christchurch

We are now two years on from the massacre of 51 Muslims in Christchurch, a terrorist attack perpetrated by an Australian man. And once again the responsibility has fallen on members of the community who were targeted to remind Australia that this...

law & crime March 10, 2021

Why our media and politics fail trauma survivors

Media commentators were quick to attack mention of a widely read self-help book in the dossier of Christian Porter's accuser. But the science of trauma is complicated, and we lack the nuance needed to understand it or its treatments.

law & crime March 6, 2021

Christian Porter, accusations and denials

It took one week for Australia’s first law officer, Christian Porter, to come out of hiding. In those seven days, he and his prime minister did everything to minimise the grave allegations of a violent historic rape. Porter has issued vehement...

religion December 12, 2020

Christchurch massacre: an Australian crime

Husna Ahmed was a wife and mother who migrated from Bangladesh to New Zealand, where she used to teach children and help to care for the elderly at her local mosque. When the Australian terrorist began to slaughter the fellow members of her...

media September 26, 2020

The media’s Covid-19 contrarians

I bought John Kehoe a coffee in 2016, when we were both in Washington, DC. Too late now for a refund, and there was, as far as I can remember, no hint of any latent Oedipal drive behind his small talk, nothing to indicate that on April 9 of this...

indigenous affairs July 18, 2020

Remaking our newsrooms

Australia is in the midst of a realisation, long overdue. It is a process, galvanised by the Black Lives Matter movement, that has revealed how deeply ingrained what could be called “unconscious” racism is in this country. Seemingly to the surprise...

rural February 1, 2020

Scott Morrison’s rebranding mission

Scott Morrison hates the pejorative nickname that has taken hold on social media. “Scotty from Marketing” was conferred on him by the satirical magazine The Betoota Advocate . The moniker has gained currency because it captures the growing gap...

law & crime November 30, 2019

Taylor twist as Morrison phones a ‘friend’

Scott Morrison’s handling of the police investigation into Energy Minister Angus Taylor this week brazenly flouted conventions of propriety and integrity. The prime minister actually phoned the New South Wales police commissioner, Mick Fuller, and...

media October 26, 2019

The shadowy corridors of power

A citizen’s right to know should be a motherhood statement in our liberal democracy, but too much vested interest gets in the way. Most essentially, the pursuit of power – and the holding on to it – is the primal force distorting the way our...