Author Archives: Peter Menadue

JERRY ROBERTS.  The dumbing-down of politics, religion and trade unions

Getup! is campaigning in Western Australia against Attorney General Christian Porter.  In the parochial West, as in Peter Dutton’s Queensland seat, this foreign presence may favour the incumbents.  By the same token the trade union campaign to change the rules … Continue reading

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PAUL ELIE. What do the Church’s victims deserve?

The Catholic Church is turning to outside arbiters to reckon with its history of sexual abuse. But skeptics argue that its legacy of evasion continues.

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JAMES O’NEILL: When Better than at an Election to Have a Serious and Overdue Debate About Defence and Foreign Policy Objectives?

 The current election cycle presents a golden opportunity to have a serious discussion about Australia’s defence and foreign policies. These have been notably lacking from both major parties.

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HAL PAWSON and BILL RANDOLPH. On housing, there’s clear blue water between the main parties (The Conversation, 12 April 2019)

Labor’s bold stance on housing tax reform and investment makes this one of the likely policy flashpoints in the coming election campaign. How does the Coalition government’s housing record stand up to scrutiny? What would be in prospect in a … Continue reading

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ANTHONY PUN. A response from the Chinese Community Council of Australia (CCCA)

The Chinese Australian community warmly thanks Prof Bob Carr for speaking out for the Chinese Australians and giving a detailed analysis of China panic over a period of more than 2 years.  Prof Carr’s suggestion of  a community response based … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 3 Comments

DAVID MACILWAIN.  Two Australians in trouble abroad.  

The law to censor violent content rushed through Parliament last week connected dots between two Australians abroad, when Julian Assange was “extradited” from Ecuadorian territory, in London. I examine the linkages.

Posted in Media, Politics | 2 Comments

TIM LINDSEY. Indonesia goes to the polls: rematch or replay? (University of Melbourne, 15 April 2019)

Indonesia goes to the polls on 17 April, with the same presidential candidates as five years ago: the incumbent, Joko Widodo (known as Jokowi), a self-made former furniture exporter and former governor of Jakarta, and Prabowo Subianto, a former general … Continue reading

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GREG BAILEY. Reflections on Five Years of Political Theatre and Nihilism (Part 2)

For the last three decades the Australian public has been told there will be massive changes which they will have to run with or just suck it up. Now, after five and a half years of floundering and negativism by … Continue reading

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JOHN TULLOH. The vanishing international interest in the Mideast

How curious that the US fought on the same side as Iran’s Revolutionary Guards last year to defeat ISIS in Syria and then, once the job was done, denounced them as a terrorist organisation and applied sanctions. How curious that … Continue reading

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GREG BAILEY. Reflections on Five Years of Political Theatre and Nihilism (Part 1)

Retrospective reflections are now beginning on what might be the heritage of the five and a half year long Abbott, Turnbull and Morrison governments. In advancing such reflections attention should not just be focussed on the political infighting within the … Continue reading

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GEOFF HARCOURT. Sluggish Wages Growth

Recent comments on sluggish wages growth in Australia trace their origins back to the Accord introduced in the early 1980s. It is also argued that the Accord was a precursor to the introduction of the neo-liberal era in Australia. I … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | 2 Comments

JOSEPH STIGLITZ. GDP is not a good measure of wellbeing – it’s too materialistic (Project Syndicate)

Just under 10 years ago, the National Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress issued its report, Mismeasuring Our Lives: Why GDP Doesn’t Add Up. The title summed it up: GDP is not a good measure of … Continue reading

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ABUL RIZVI: Questions Ahead of Home Affairs Meeting That Never Happened

On 29 March 2019, I received an email stating “Secretary Pezzullo has requested that a/g Deputy Secretary, Luke Mansfield and First Assistant Secretary, Richard Johnson provide you a personal briefing.” Thinking this was the dawn of a new era of … Continue reading

Posted in Refugees, Immigration | 1 Comment

MICHAEL KEATING. The Budget: Part 2

The Budget is the most comprehensive statement of a government’s priorities. It is the Budget that tells us specifically where the government intends to spend and how it intends to pay for that expenditure. In this article, I will seek … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | 2 Comments

MUNGO MACCALLUM. Sick of Morrison’s shilly-shallying

A somewhat exasperated Bill Shorten accuses Scott Morrison of playing games over the election date – and so he is.

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MUNGO MACCALLUM. Morrison reverses gratuitous cruelty.

There was at least one moment of relief after the election spiel masquerading as a budget; the decision exclude the energy supplement hand out from the New Start allowance was reversed in less than twelve hours.

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MICHAEL KEATING. The Budget: Part 1

  The Budget provides the opportunity for the Government and the Opposition to outline their respective economic strategies and their relative priorities. Interestingly, while there are significant differences between the two major political parties, there are also important similarities; probably … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Politics | 1 Comment

DAVID SOLOMON. A strange election with some unknowns in Queensland

This is the weirdest starting point for a federal election that I can recall. Here in Queensland there are nine seats held by the LNP with a two-party preferred margin of 6 per cent or less. Depending on which betting … Continue reading

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BOB CARR. Real diplomacy could have avoided China’s coal revenge (Australian Financial Review, 3 April 2019)

The ban on Huawei itself isn’t the problem, but the way that some arms of the government rubbed China’s face in it.

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 1 Comment

GILES PARKINSON. Coalition signs off with a budget tailored for climate denial (RenewEconomy, 2.4.19)

The federal Coalition government has delivered its last budget before the May poll, and pretty much finished the way it started in government nearly six years ago: Long term climate and clean energy policies and technologies are ignored, and the … Continue reading

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BRUCE THOM.  Climate change adaption: perspectives from Canada and England

Australia can learn lessons from other countries who take very seriously the importance of addressing now the various complex challenges of climate change impacts on environmental assets and the lifestyles and livelihoods of citizens. We have no national plan to … Continue reading

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MUNGO MACCALLUM. Drunken braggarts get stung.

Let’s be clear about the Al Jazeera sting against One Nation: the drunken braggarts who fell for it deserved all they got and more.

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MARGARET REYNOLDS.  New opportunity for Code of  Race Ethics supported by 54% of the Australian Parliament in 1998.

Senator Penny Wong considers today’s politicians  have failed to isolate  the extremism of One Nation as effectively as in the 1990s.

Posted in Politics, Refugees, Immigration | 3 Comments

ANDREW JAKUBOWICZ. Why Australia is the best place to be an online racist.

When no name pulled the trigger over one hundred times as he sluiced his way through the congregations at two Christchurch mosques, nothing he did was new. It was bigger, perhaps more “successful”, and maybe better planned than his role … Continue reading

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WANNING SUN. Chinese social media platform WeChat could be a key battleground in the federal election (The Conversation, 28 March 2019)

Labor leader Michael Daley’s “young Asians with PhDs taking our jobs” blunder cost him dearly in the recent NSW state election. His defeat also offered a taste of the crucial role the Chinese social networking platform WeChat could play in … Continue reading

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ABUL RIZVI: Migration confusion again (Part 2)

Judith Sloan writing in The Australian (We’re the big losers in this immigration numbers game) has called on the Morrison Government to do much more to drive down immigration, not just the migration program which is measured in terms of … Continue reading

Posted in Politics, Refugees, Immigration | 6 Comments

VACY VLAZNA. Christchurch, Nobel and the Aussie Comatose Conscience

The Christchurch tragedy has exposed the Canberra virus that haemorrhages hypocrisy, racism, lies, scaremongering and heartlessness infecting the Australian psyche.

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JOO-CHEON THAM. We’ve let wage exploitation become the default experience of migrant workers (The Conversation, 21.03.18)

Australia’s Fairwork Commission has so far this year examined more than a dozen cases of wage theft. Those cases involve hundreds of workers and millions of dollars in underpayments. And it’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Posted in Economy | 1 Comment

ABUL RIZVI: Migration confusion again (Part 1)

Judith Sloan writing in The Australian (We’re the big losers in this immigration numbers game) has called on the Morrison Government to do much more to drive down immigration, not just the migration program which is measured in terms of … Continue reading

Posted in Politics, Refugees, Immigration | 5 Comments

MUNGO MACCALLUM.  Morrison has something to clap about.

Scott Morrison would have been happier and clappier than usual when he went to his Horizon Pentecostalist Church last Sunday.

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