• The Trump dilemma
    Don’t get me wrong. Trump is not the dilemma to which I’m referring. His
    behaviour is no longer a quandary. With every word he utters, with every
    tweet, he confirms that his mental state continues to deteriorate to the point
    where commentator after commentator expresses astonishment and alarm at his
    outlandish reactions to the social and political environment in which he finds himself.
  • Information and critical thinking do matter
    When Prime Minister Morrison was advised there was the risk of uncontrolled
    spread of a deadly pandemic on the horizon early this year, he was slightly
    wiser than at Christmas when he left a burning Australia in the ‘capable’
    hands of Deputy Prime Minister and National Party Leader Michael McCormack.
  • Morrison morphs into ‘Strict Father’ mode
    Back in 2013, I wrote a piece with the curious title:
    The myth of political sameness.
    Its purpose was to debunk the commonly held
    view that ‘politicians are all the same’.
  • Double standards
    There has been general praise for the Australian Governments
    (at all levels) and their management of the COVID19 pandemic.
    While the politicians signed off on the decisions, they listened to
    and generally acted on the advice of the state and federal CMOs.
  • People trusted Holden
    In the 1970s and 1980s the slogan was ‘People trust Holden’;
    and they did. General Motors Holden had spent a lot of time
    and money over many years marketing Holden vehicles as Australia’s
    own car and as a result Holden sales were going gangbusters.
  • Listen to the experts
    Are you as impressed as I am with Australia’s response to COVID-19?
    It is regarded as perhaps the most competent reaction, amongst similar
    nations, of how to manage an outbreak of a vicious virus. Why is it so?
    In my view, this outcome has resulted because our decision makers at both
    federal and local levels have listened to the experts, and have followed their advice.

The Political Sword

Get the inside track on the media and government.

Better economic managers?

If you have a memory that is better than the media and Coalition Government hope you do, you would probably remember when the Rudd ALP Government, challenged by what are arguably similar economic conditions to those today, primed the economy with a three pronged approach. The theory was that there w...

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Get used to the new world leadership

It’s happened again! Just when thoughtful folk believed world leadership could not become more bizarre than it is, Boris Johnson gets the nod from Britain’s Tories. To confound those who imagined that Donald Trump’s election in the land of the brave and the free could hardly be replicated on the oth...

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How good is compassion and concern!

You may have seen recently that Dick Smith was somewhat flummoxed when he noticed that the Australian Taxation legislation is configured in such a way that he received $0.5 million in franking credits in a financial year. While it would be easy to suggest to Smith and (probably) others with similar ...

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Remember the light on the hill?

At the 1949 ALP Convention, then Prime Minister Ben Chifley delivered the ‘Light on the Hill’ speech. The speech is seen as a declaration of ‘traditional’ ALP values as a movement bringing something better to the people, better standards of living, greater happiness to the mass of the people. We...

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The Chain of Responsibility

There are certain responsibilities when you are driving a vehicle. You are required to comply with rules such as not being affected by drugs or alcohol, not checking your social media accounts while driving, maintaining control over your vehicle, parking only where allowed and so on. Some who make a...

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Just answer the Question!

This piece is short and snappy. I know that, like me, you fume when politicians steadfastly refuse to answer a question directly, preferring to prevaricate by evading an answer altogether, giving an answer to a question they would prefer to answer, or wandering off into a boring recital of the dot p...

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The economy is sinking, but where is the lifebuoy?

Those of you who hear experts describe in frightening terms the dire state of our economy, and then hear the faux reassurances that issue from the mouths of our Treasurer and Prime Minister, must wonder if they live in some parallel universe, where, reminiscent of Humpty Dumpty, words can mean anyth...

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The root cause

Frequently, when presented with a problem, we attempt to treat the symptom rather than the real issue. For example, if every morning when you get in your car you notice that one of the tyres looks a bit flat, you could treat the symptom by calling in at the nearest petrol station and putting more ai...

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Duttonisation – an existential threat to Morrison?

Make no mistake – Dutton’s thirst for power remains unquenched. His conviction that he is ‘the better man’ to be prime minister continues unabated. This piece argues that in pursuit of this lofty goal, he has now consciously embarked on a process best described as ‘Duttonisation’. Let me explain....

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You're paying too much

And that has nothing to do with fuel marketing cycles that seem to afflict larger cities around the country, the cost of importing fuel because the multi-national refining companies have determined it is not economic to produce fuel in Australia or any one of the hundreds of other theories of why it...

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They've got a mandate

You’ve probably heard politicians and commentators suggest that various acts should be undertaken because ‘they’ve got a mandate’. One of the recent examples is new Environment Minister Angus Taylor claiming there is now a ‘mandate’ for a lack of any meaningful action on managing climate change in A...

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The battle for the killer slogan

I could commence this piece by debating why slogans influence voters, no matter how tiresome, no matter how monotonous. But why bother? We know they work. Why bother to question their use, or scorn those who use them? It is surely more practical to examine how to use them creatively. This piece is j...

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The Coalition can’t manage money

The Coalition can’t manage money. No, that’s not a misprint. The conventional wisdom, peddled by the Coalition, aided and abetted by opinion polls that always rate the Coalition ahead of Labor in managing the economy, is that ‘Labor can’t manage money’. During the election campaign, that was echoed ...

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Extremism and Queensland

Political extremism generally doesn’t condone rape, murder or shootings to achieve stated aims, however it does promote that there is no tolerance for differing opinions or compromise. A common statement from the conservative forces leading up to the last election was that the Australian Greens wer...

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The Tag Line

The recent election was an exercise in marketing and not much else. Morrison promoted himself and ‘good economic management’ rather than the Coalition while flitting around the country handing out dollars to ‘deserving’ infrastructure projects, usually in marginal seats. Shorten’s ALP had, by cont...

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How? Why?

It’s not just Labor supporters who are asking these questions. Everyone is. The polls are unable to provide an answer. They proved to have no predictive value. Psephologists explain that since pollsters have changed their sampling techniques in the face of changes to communications technology, th...

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The shiny new toy

Now that the election is over it is time for a bit of reflection. Logistics behind the operation of this site mean this article is not a who won what and why; rather we’ll be looking at why a number of the smaller parties seem to have punched above their weight, and some possible reasons for their ‘...

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The cupboard was bare!

It wasn’t easy getting into the nerve centre of the LNP – the secret place where talking points, election strategies and day to day tactics are brainstormed by the Coalition’s eggheads in the dead of night – but eventually, more by good luck than good management, I found myself in the inner sanctum....

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He hit me first!

We all have memories of a child bawling its eyes out after being clobbered by another kid. We also have memories of the offender’s customary excuse: ‘He hit me first!’. We tend to label such behaviour as ‘kids stuff’. But how many of you expected grown-up politicians to ape them? Yet they do...

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Fear, deception and gravitas

Enjoying the election coverage? Essentially it is the day to day analysis of the political leaders of this country racking up the kilometres to appear in ‘strategic’ locations, with nodding sycophants behind them answering the same or similar questions as they did yesterday to the same tired and b...

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