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The mystery of early elections

The TV news hear in Brisbane has been running rumours about an early state election for most of the year. Even though a string of predictions have already proved false, the rumours keep coming. I heard another one yesterday, but today’s news suggests not, though with the odd phrasing ANNASTACIA Palaszczuk has fuelled speculation she […]

Breaking ground in Adani’s Utopia

Having argued for some time that Adani’s Carmichael mine-rail-port project is unlikely to go ahead, I was initially surprised to read the announcement that Adani says it will break ground on Carmichael rail link ‘within days’. My mental image was of heavy earthmoving equipment excavating the route along which the line is to be laid. […]

Why zero (multifactor) productivity growth is OK for Oz (very wonkish)

I’m writing a book chapter about productivity, much of which will be a rehash of my 20-year debate with the Productivity Commission over measures of multi-factor productivity (MFP). In the process, I reread this op-ed by Ross Gittins, and the Treasury article on which it is based, by Simon Campbell and Harry Withers. As a […]

Stooges, Scoundrels And The Nobel Peace Prize

The world’s most ‘prestigious peace prize’ has a chequered history, and this week’s announcement did nothing to improve that, writes Rutaban Yameen. What good can come from the Nobel Peace Prize? It was established from the deceased estate of Alfred Nobel who invented dynamite and whose fortunes came in part from making and selling arms. [...]Show More Summary

Save the weekend!

I have a piece in The Conversation about the decision to cut weekend penalty rates. This decision needs to be put in the context of forty years of policy aimed at pushing down wages, eroding conditions (such as the weekend) and weakening the position of unions.

A Piece Of You: Naomi Corteen Lost Two Sisters In The Bali Bombings. 15 Years On, This Is Her Tribute

Tomorrow marks 15 years since the Bali Bombings, which killed 202 people, including 88 Australians and 38 Indonesians. Naomi Corteen lost two sisters, Jane and Jenny, in the attacks. This is her tribute to the loves and lives lost, and to a way forward. My sisters Jane and Jenny had legendary laughter. They were widely loved and [...]Show More Summary

It’s International Day Of The Girl Child. Over To Nelly Thomas…

I posed the following question to my 10-year-old daughter, “How do you think we can raise girls to be happy?” Her answer: “Give them as many lollies as they want and buy them an Ipad.” When I asked my five-year-old the same question she pulled a face at me, farted and threw her hair back [...]Show More Summary

‘Free Energy’ Goes Begging At Illawarra’s BlueScope Steel

Cogeneration – the process of creating useful heat and electricity at the same time – is the obvious route to securing a future for the Port Kembla steel works. The owners just need to invest in the technology, and the environment writes Lee Rhiannon. Now BlueScope Steel is back in the black, with a net [...]Show More Summary

It’s The Habitat Destruction, Stupid

The Federal Government’s Threatened Species Commissioner, Gregory Andrews, told ABC Radio last Friday that wide-scale destruction of habitat isn’t a ‘key’ threat to our wildlife. The science says he’s demonstrably, dangerously wrong, writes Suzanne Milthorpe. Show More Summary

Adani’s Coal Mine Is A Symptom Of The Crisis In Australian Politics

Vale an Australian political system that can approve a mining project so clearly against the national interest. Ben Eltham explains. Let us assume for a moment that the Carmichael coal mine in Queensland does go ahead. Leaving aside the huge hurdle of finance, the mine has cleared all necessary approvals. What does that say about the [...]Show More Summary

End Of An Error: The Days Of Danby-ism Look Done

The long political career of Labor’s most outspoken supporter of Israel appears to be in terminal decline, writes Michael Brull. The public fall of Labor Member of Parliament Michael Danby has been remarkable to watch, in part because of his long record of vicious smears, including about me, but also because of what it indicates [...]Show More Summary

Socialism for the 21st century

I have a long article in the Guardian putting forward some thoughts about a socialist economic policy program for the 21st century. The headline “Socialism with Spine” is a shortening of my observation that: As it is used today, the term socialism does not reflect a well-worked ideology. Rather it conveys an attitude that could […]

John Pilger On The Rise Of Britain’s ‘New Politics’

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has made a lot of noise about human rights and a ‘new way’ for British foreign policy. But it looks startlingly similar to the old way, writes John Pilger. Delegates to the recent Labour Party conference in the English seaside town of Brighton seemed not to notice a video playing in [...]Show More Summary

Who will pay for Adani’s infrastructure? We will

A couple of days ago, it was announced that the Fly In Fly Out workforce for Adani’s putative Carmichael mine would be split between Townsville and Rockhampton. Since I’ve long argued that the mine is highly unlikely to go ahead, I didn’t read the news stories closely. So, I missed the fact, buried in the […]

A History Of Slaughter: The Rohingya, Aung San Suu Kyi And Australia’s Role In A Human Rights Betrayal

As the slaughter continues, Ali MC weighs in on the history of the ‘world’s most persecuted people’. Recently, protesters converged on the State Library of Victoria to make their voice heard in response to the escalating Rohingya crisis. For the mostly Muslim cohort, it was a voice of frustration, anger and desperate hope; understandably so, as what hope [...]Show More Summary

Hey Guys, The 1950s (Cat)Called, It Wants Its Misogyny Back

What’s a little sexual harassment between complete strangers? Chris Graham explains. There’s a lot of things that wouldn’t happen in Australia if men didn’t dominate lawmaking. For example, if it was men who laboured (bad pun intended) through a lifetime of wage disparity, then it’s unlikely it would be allowed to endure very long. We’d [...]Show More Summary

Why The ‘Yes’ Vote Has To Embrace The Postal Plebiscite

It might be painful, but the marriage equality postal survey is also an opportunity, writes Cameron McPhedran. Change very often occurs in the crucible of pain. The debate surrounding Australia’s optional postal vote on same-sex marriage is painful, and exhausting, for LGBTIQA+ people. It is a long process, placing ongoing scrutiny on our community. However, [...]Show More Summary

How We Treat Out Homeless: The Elephant Outside The Room

Once upon a time, Australia had a social welfare system designed to lift up the poor. Now we have a system designed to punish them. Sharna de Lacy from StreetSmart explains. The plan to redefine ‘camping’ to criminalise rough sleeping was recently dumped by the Melbourne City Council amid well-founded fears of a lengthy legal [...]Show More Summary

Spies, Lies And Caliphates: 3 Simple Ways We Trash Relations Between Muslims And The State

If you can’t understand why so many Muslim Australians have so little trust in the government, then you probably haven’t been following the news. Or Parliament. Or… Michael Brull breaks it down for you. In this article, I want to discuss how the state in Australia relates to Muslims. Whilst Islamophobia is thought of as [...]Show More Summary

‘Aussie Values’: The Problem With The Yes Campaign

Equality is equality, but you shouldn’t have to look and act like ‘everyone else’ to be granted it. Emily Castle explains. It is no real surprise that the Party for Freedom, a far-right group of white nationalists dedicated to anti-Islam protests, should now take up arms to defend “white heteronormativity” against the perceived threat of [...]Show More Summary

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