Joe ‘end the age of entitlement’ Hockey goes on a half-year bender

Louise O’Shea “Get a good job that pays good money” was Joe Hockey’s advice to those struggling to afford their first home during his time as treasurer in 2015. And as befits a man of his integrity, Hockey has led by example. Following his stint of selfless public service at home, he has secured a good...CONTINUE READING

How we won marriage equality

Louise O’Shea On 27 May 2004, then prime minister John Howard announced his intention to amend the Marriage Act to define marriage as being between a man and a woman. The act was amended the following August. Two key events had precipitated this action. One was then US president George W. Bush’s vocal s...CONTINUE READING

Vindication of protest politics

Louise O’Shea Much is significant about the resounding victory of the “yes” campaign. But perhaps the most important, and the factor that will leave a lasting legacy in Australian political culture, was its mass nature. It has been a fascinating case study of how to turn a highly unfavourable situation...CONTINUE READING

A historic repudiation of the conservative right

Louise O’Shea In a society that thrives on division, prejudice and fear, the result of the marriage equality postal survey is a triumph. Instead of accepting, as we have become so used to doing, injustice and discrimination being carried out in our name by our elected representatives, the mass of people...CONTINUE READING

Rallies across country as Yes campaign enters final stretch

Louise O’Shea With the marriage equality postal survey deadline approaching, thousands have rallied around the country in support of a Yes vote. In Sydney, 15,000 people marched, while rallies in Canberra and Adelaide attracted 1,000 and 2,000 respectively. In Melbourne, thousands marched to a festival...CONTINUE READING

It’s not OK to vote No

Louise O’Shea It must be the most uninspiring rallying cry ever dreamt up by a political strategist: “It’s OK to vote no”. The sense of hope and optimism that has defined the iconic slogans of the great political movements of the 20th century – from Whitlam’s “It’s time” to May ’68’s “All power to the i...CONTINUE READING

You can't 'respectfully' deny people their rights

Louise O’Shea “I deplore disrespectful, abusive language, whether it is directed at young gay people or religious people.” So declared that sensitive soul Malcolm Turnbull in response to concerns raised about his farcical marriage equality postal survey. Presumably, he has been too busy managing his pro...CONTINUE READING

How the postal vote fiasco turned the marriage equality campaign around

Louise O’Shea The Yes campaign has been launched in the best way a postal survey campaign possibly could be: with a history-making mass mobilisation. More than 20,000 people, the largest demonstration for LGBTI rights in Australian history, packed into Melbourne’s CBD on 26 August to demand equal rights...CONTINUE READING

Section 44: what’s not to like?

Louise O’Shea Until very recently, section 44 of the Constitution just seemed like any other archaic anti-democratic measure designed to ensure that only the most respectable and patriotic among the bourgeoisie ever made it into parliament. But now that this quiet achieving piece of constitutional law l...CONTINUE READING