The discreet charm of Mike Pence

Diane Fieldes According to the world media, US vice president Mike Pence has been on a “charm offensive” in Australia. In reality, Pence is a right-wing weirdo, who could be dubbed charming only by contrast with Donald Trump, and because of the sycophancy of the media. This shtick of not being as bad as...CONTINUE READING

A terror whose name we dare not speak

Ben Hillier Money corrupts. And too many young men are being seduced and radicalised by its lure. Greed-fuelled extremism is not a new phenomenon. Many communities have dealt with it, going back millennia. In the 8th century BC, Amos, a contemporary of Isaiah, thundered against the wealthy of Sion, th...CONTINUE READING

What’s wrong with Tim Anderson?

Omar Hassan The weird and wacky world of the far right blogosphere has had a busy fortnight. They pulled out all stops: shocking headlines, capital letters, even the classic homoerotic picture of a topless Putin on a horse. The point of all this frantic activity? To cast as much doubt as possible on t...CONTINUE READING

Why they lie about refugees

Con Karavias Politicians lie. There’s nothing they do better or more predictably. But Australian politicians have the uncanny ability to surpass even the most cynical expectations of what the people in power will sink to. And all they have to do is start talking about refugees. Take Peter Dutton’s late...CONTINUE READING

How the 18c debate restored my faith in parliament

Louise O’Shea Political service is well known for attracting the best and brightest of each generation. Nowhere was that more evident than in the Australian Senate during the debate on amendments to section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act. The debate’s participants are a credit to the private schoo...CONTINUE READING

When even Keating is getting off the neoliberal train

Corey Oakley Neoliberalism is having a bad time of it lately. ACTU secretary Sally McManus, speaking at the Press Club in March, was the latest to go on the attack. “Neoliberalism, trickle-down economics. These tired ideas have delivered inequality for working people, and ordinary Australians have been...CONTINUE READING

Hypocrites attack Irish freedom struggle

Pat Stack The death of Martin McGuinness has allowed two fairly standard, and on the face of it contrasting, narratives to emerge. The official one – as espoused with greater or lesser enthusiasm by the likes of Tony Blair, Theresa May, John Major, Alastair Campbell and the like – is that there was...CONTINUE READING

Why the ‘free speech’ right sook like babies

Louise O’Shea Object to the bigotry of a right wing politician or commentator and the cry will inevitably ring out: “My free speech! Oh, unbearable persecution!” It’s the political equivalent of Cristiano Ronaldo hitting the grass clutching his ankle because someone ran between him and the goal. In this...CONTINUE READING

What we need to revive our union movement

Jerome Small “I believe in the rule of law where the law is fair and the law is right. But when the law is unjust, I don’t think there’s a problem with breaking it.” This unexpected and forthright declaration by the new secretary of the Australian Council of Trade Unions, Sally McManus, points to one i...CONTINUE READING