• A tale of two ideologies
    Once upon a time, the newly elected progressive Australian Government was told by
    their advisers that financial calamity was to sweep the world, bringing financial ruin,
    uncertainty and pestilence (the last one might just be made up) to humanity. The newly
    elected government, being of the mind that they employ specialists who have likely
    forgotten more about their subjects than the politicians had ever known, asked what to do.
  • Nature abhors a vacuum
    In the past year or so, most of us would have become quite familiar with the group of people
    that seem to front up almost daily to discuss the current state of the COVID19 pandemic in
    each Australian jurisdiction. Usually there are a couple of politicians ably backed up by the
    experts in public health management, a high-ranking commissioned Police Officer, with a
    person live translating the discussion into Auslan for the benefit of those with hearing difficulties.
  • What is revving up the bully boys?
    Have you noticed the cluster of loud-mouthed men
    that has appeared recently on our Melbourne streets,
    fists raised, shouting messages of defiance
    directed at our those in authority?
  • We should be better than this
    In The Guardian’s detailed history of the ‘Tampa affair’ which
    occurred twenty years ago, you will notice a number of similarities
    with the current humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. Sadly, you will
    also notice that the response by current Prime Minister Morrison is
    worse than then Prime Minister Howard’s response twenty years ago.
  • Toad of Toad Hall
    This short piece is not intended to be a serious treatise; instead it’s a
    light-hearted appraisal of federal politics. We have had our fill of commentaries
    on the ins and outs of the Canberra scene written by self-confident ‘experts’
    who believe they understand the machinations of the political class.
  • The environmental vandals
    Over the past couple of weeks we’ve looked at some of the less
    savoury aspects of the current Coalition Government, led (for the
    moment) by Scott Morrison. This week, how about we look at the
    environmental record of this government, which reaches back
    to the days when Tony Abbott was the Prime Minister.

The Political Sword

Get the inside track on the media and government.

Smoke and Mirrors

Inaction on climate change is already costing Australia’s farmers countless dollars, and urgent political action is needed to avoid more extreme droughts, fires and floods, according to a group of farmers who don’t agree with the statements of Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack, Senator Matt C...

Read More

Absolute power corrupts absolutely

We really shouldn’t be surprised that Facebook banned news coverage from their platform for around a week in Australia recently. Their ‘real’ objective isn’t to be the world’s back fence that everyone leans on to have a chat, it is to sell advertising that is based on your interests. They analyse yo...

Read More

Living with our ‘transactional’ Prime Minister

Writing in The New Daily, it was Dennis Atkins who drew our attention to the notion that we had a ‘transactional’ Prime Minister. He recounted an exchange between Nick Xenophon and the PM when Xenophon asked him if he’d like to catch up for a coffee to have a chat about issues, to which Morrison res...

Read More

It takes a spark

Former Prime Minister and Donald Trump wannabe Tony Abbott bobbed up again in the media recently. Apparently our world class response to COVID19, driven by the Premiers and Chief Ministers was a hysterical reaction driven by health despots. Abbott, now a ‘distinguished fellow’ (their words, not mine...

Read More

Politics is a charade

Charade: an absurd pretence intended to create a pleasant or respectable appearance. We, the people, are the victims of such deliberate pretence by the political class. Do any of you need convincing of this cruel reality? If you do, reflect for a moment on the proceedings of Donald Trump’s ...

Read More

Bubble politics

As we emerge from four years of disastrous Trump politics, fervently hoping for a modicum of normality in US politics, we find ourselves confronted with a growing phenomenon: the desire of many to live in a bubble of their own choice. We saw this coming as the likes of Fox News in the US fostered ...

Read More

The Age of Aquarius

Older folks will remember the musical Hair with its opening song Aquarius: ”This is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius, When the Moon is in the seventh house and Jupiter aligns with Mars, then peace will guide the planets and love will steer the stars." Devoid of poetic imagination, astro...

Read More

The sad joke

There is an old joke about the boy who lived in Inflatable World who, after going on a rampage with a pin, was lying deflated in a bed in the Inflatable Hospital. His school principal was sitting beside him and giving him a lecture on ethics and morals; ‘your rampage has caused a lot of damage, you’...

Read More

Anger

I might have titled this piece ‘Rage’, but not wishing its thrust to be confused with Rage, the all-night music video program broadcast on the ABC on Friday nights and Saturdays, I have stuck with the less emotive word ‘anger’. You all know what ‘anger’ means. It is with some trepidation that I w...

Read More

The Hummingbird

You might remember 2020. It was the year that Australia’s state and territory leaders demonstrated who really ran the country. At various times during 2020 a number of states and territories restricted entry to and movement around their jurisdictions on the basis of minimising the transmission of th...

Read More

What do you expect from TPS in 2021?

First, you may be interested to read what I wrote over ten years ago, in September 2008, in a piece titled Welcome to the Political Sword blog. The history of The Political Sword though goes back further. It began when Possum Comitatus (aka Scott Steel) gave me my first opportunity to have a blog...

Read More

Season’s Greetings

Another year is behind us. It’s been the most torrid since the end of WWII. I don’t need to elaborate. Yet it has not bowed us. The human organism has a vast capacity to adapt and accomodate. While some have complained, most have simply ‘sucked it up’. Can you remember when last we have had to endur...

Read More

The mug punter

When we entered 2020, Prime Minister Scott Morrison was ‘livin’ the dream’. He had narrowly won the 2019 election and after a few months of pushing the tautological fiction that the Australian budget was already in surplus next year, he was kicking back in Hawaii with ‘Jen and the girls’ having a gr...

Read More

Vale 2020

As we exit the year past, what do you consider to be the most significant event of 2020? Among a plethora of extraordinary events, as a doctor, the occurrence of COVID-19 gets my vote. Why? Look at the statistics: At the time of publication, this is the stark situation worldwide: Cas...

Read More

The dangerous toll of entrenched belief

The world is redolent with danger. Even small children know the dangers in their playground: he knows he can fall from the monkey bars; she knows she can be injured by the seesaw if it gyrates unexpectedly. Every bulletin of news reminds us of dangers: on the road, at the seaside, on the ocean, at t...

Read More

The cost of ideology

Given recent events in Australia, you could say the price of political ideology is $1.2Billion, as that is the settlement the Coalition government negotiated to make the ‘robodebt’ class action go away without a court case. Probably more telling is there appears to be nothing for the thousands that ...

Read More

Guiliani

Guiliani You know him well. He’s been in the public eye for decades. Now, he’s Donald Trump’s attorney, caught in the middle of Trump’s futile campaign to wrest the presidency from Joe Biden, the acknowledged and certified winner of the recent election. That he is prepared to join Trump in this ...

Read More

You gotta hit bottom

Sitting on this side of the Pacific, it seems that the USA has chosen a new President after one term. A sitting President who is eligible for reelection has been defeated only 10 times in US history. While the razzle-dazzle and showbiz style of the US election campaigns is ongoing and seems to be ac...

Read More

Trump is a cult leader

Do you sometimes ask yourself how it is that President Trump is able to attract and hold such a devoted collection of admirers, some of whom insist they ‘would die for him’? Are you amazed that they come out on the streets again and again in their thousands to cheer him and rail angrily against thos...

Read More

It's the planet stupid

At the recent full year results release, the ANZ announced it planned to be a business that generated net zero emissions by 2050. This report in The Guardian gives considerable detail on the ANZ’s plan for the future and also discusses Agriculture Minister David Littleproud and Deputy Prime Minister...

Read More