Fairfax, corporate media and a question of independence

Ben Hillier Channel Nine’s imminent takeover of Fairfax media – publisher of the Australian Financial Review, Melbourne’s Age and the Sydney Morning Herald, among others – is the biggest development in Australian media in more than three decades. Under the newly announced merger, Nine will acquire Fai...CONTINUE READING

My Health Record a sick joke

Diane Fieldes You would be hard pressed to find an article positively recommending having a My Health Record. That’s because the government has set it up so that we all automatically get one unless we opt out. So they largely dispensed with the bother of promoting it. Do nothing, and you’re in. Even if...CONTINUE READING

Turnbull government comes a cropper on Super Saturday

Tom Bramble Malcolm Turnbull has boasted for months about his government’s success in pushing through a right wing economic agenda, shovelling money into the hands of the well-off at the expense of the working class. Big tax cuts for big business were to be the next cab off the rank. The media have be...CONTINUE READING

Australian government lashes out over East Timor spying scandal

Max Lane The Australian government has laid criminal charges against Witness K and lawyer Bernard Collaery over their exposure of the bugging of the East Timorese cabinet. The first court hearing has just been postponed until 12 September in Canberra. If the two are convicted, the maximum sentence...CONTINUE READING

Australia continues to deport asylum seekers to a country where torture is ‘routine’ and ‘systemic’

Ben Hillier The United Nations has documented widespread torture in Sri Lanka. But the Australian government continues to deport asylum seekers to danger. UN special rapporteur Ben Emmerson’s latest human rights report, released on 23 July after he visited the country last year, concludes: “Impunity i...CONTINUE READING

Australia, not Trump, is the world leader in anti-refugee crimes 

Diane Fieldes When Austria assumed the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union this month, the Economist ran a cartoon of the country’s right wing, anti-refugee chancellor, Sebastian Kurz, dreaming of a map of Australia with the words “No people smuggling” embedded in it. It illustrated...CONTINUE READING

Women get a raw deal in Australia

Emma Norton Following in the footsteps of Tony Abbott and Julia Gillard, Malcolm Turnbull in 2016 declared himself a feminist. His attendances at subsequent champagne breakfasts with society’s elite on International Women’s Day have had noticeably greater vigour. Aligned against such “feminists” are t...CONTINUE READING

Public transport should be in public hands

Robin Laycock People in the outer suburbs of Melbourne spend hours commuting every week. The average daily return trip is around 80 minutes. Nearly one user in three spends more than two hours each day on a train, bus or tram. Those using public transport have a commute time roughly double that of someo...CONTINUE READING

Gross neglect at the heart of refugee service provision

Tim Arnot Two reports released this month indicate widespread neglect and denial of basic human rights of refugees and people seeking asylum. The UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, conducted a monitoring mission in Australia’s detention centres on Manus Island in June. The mission revealed a lack of support...CONTINUE READING