Another reason to dislike Bill Shorten

Corey Oakley I have an addition to the long list of things I don’t like about Bill Shorten. In his successful campaign for the Labor leadership, he repeatedly invoked the legacy of Gough Whitlam. Not the Whitlam of 1972, whose government implemented a fairly sweeping agenda of social democratic reforms...CONTINUE READING

Abbott lays groundwork for attacks

Mick Armstrong Unlike Jeff Kennett in 1992, John Howard in 1996 or more recently Campbell Newman in Queensland, the Abbott conservative government has not immediately gone on the rampage with a wave of privatisations and cuts to vital public services and core workers’ rights. Rather than being upfront ab...CONTINUE READING

Law and order hysteria threatens Legal Aid

Steph Price Readers of Melbourne’s Herald Sun can bet they’re in for a treat when the paper gets talking about “evil”. This time it’s not terrorists, dictators or street gangs. The devil has recruited the latest willing souls from the ranks of a more odious group: Victoria’s criminal defence lawyers....CONTINUE READING

A culture of entitlement

Editors The motto of the Abbott Liberal government seems to be “weddings, parties, anything”. Apparently, attending their friends’ social functions is important business. It is “networking” they say, as they claim thousands of dollars in expenses for their trips. Attorney-General George Brandis, A...CONTINUE READING

Why we need to know the truth

Diane Fieldes For years, refugee rights supporters have rightly denounced the press and the politicians for creating hysteria about boat arrivals. Unlike others who travel, refugees allegedly “flood”, come in “waves” and threaten to “swamp” the country. The Sydney Daily Telegraph’ s 2011 front-page head...CONTINUE READING

The new inequality

Trevor Grant Labor MP Andrew Leigh’s latest book Battlers and billionaires: the story of inequality in Australia has reproduced some powerful facts from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, which condemn the system under which we live. Since 1975, wages for the lowest paid workers have risen 15 percent...CONTINUE READING

Education in the Abbott era

Louise O’Shea New education minister Christopher Pyne has given a revealing interview outlining some of the Coalition’s intentions regarding higher education in Australia. They are not good news. They involve scrapping Labor’s plan to increase university places for working class and disadvantaged studen...CONTINUE READING

The real welfare bludgers

Tom Bramble With the Abbott government boasting its ambition to get the budget back into surplus, you can be sure that claims about cutting “wasteful” welfare spending will get louder in coming months. Treasurer Joe Hockey has already announced his intention to tackle what he calls “an age of entitlem...CONTINUE READING

Australia’s criminal injustice system

A Red Flag feature covering the origins of the Australian police, racism in the force, law and order politics and the increasingly violent nature of policing under neoliberalism. What are the police for? By Andrew Cheeseman If you are an avid watcher of all the TV crime shows like CSI, you...CONTINUE READING