• Sitting astride the barbed wire fence
    The human mind is a wonderful thing. We all have different interests,
    ideas and methods of doing what is needed to stay alive. We also have
    different beliefs. Some will tell you that the contrails left in the sky following
    the passage of aircraft are a 24/7/365-day aerosol assault over our heads made
    of a toxic brew of poisonous heavy metals, chemicals, and other dangerous ingredients.
  • #30 year challenge
    There is a social media meme at the moment where two photos are posted
    side by side, one from 2009 the other from 2019. ‘Bonus points’ are apparently
    gained by ‘featuring’ a similar pose in both photos. As everything is apparently
    better with a hashtag, this latest fad is tagged as the #10yearchallenge.
  • Global problems cast a gloomy shadow
    What better time to take a look at our world, our planet, than at the beginning
    of another year? Long past are the days when we could retreat into a comfortable
    cocoon with no windows to the wider world. Unless we turn off our radios, television,
    our computers and the Internet, and never look at print media, we cannot avoid
    exposure to the world’s events, redolent as they are with worrisome overtones.
  • Job Number 1
    They say it’s nice to start with a win. So as we get down to business for another
    year let’s celebrate a small win (‘I told you so’ is so 2018!). In May 2015, The
    Political Sword discussed the release of Anglicare’s annual rental affordability
    snapshot, which highlighted that 8 of the 65,614 properties available for rent across
    Australia met the affordability requirements for a single person on Youth Allowance.
  • Why is there still so much anger?
    As we enter the Festive Season, we reflect on the year past and
    the one ahead. It’s a time when Christians celebrate Christmas and
    other special days, Jewish folk enjoy Hanukkah, Mexicans celebrate
    the Fiesta of our Lady of Guadalupe, and Swedes celebrate St Lucia
    Day. The New Year is ushered in as an opportunity for new hope.
  • Let's Dance
    In a recent email, Virginia Trioli wrote in relation to Christmas Parties: Go hard
    or go home. Say something. Talk — really talk — about your life, your triumphs,
    your failures; your year of struggle or your reflections on another milestone
    reached; your pride, your joy, the moments of grace remembered or sought:
    or don’t talk, don’t just chatter, and how about we just stand in companionable silence...

The Political Sword

Get the inside track on the media and government.

The forgotten art of political communication

“Julia Gillard is not getting her message out”. “She is not cutting through”. “People have stopped listening”. “Her message is being drowned out by noise”. How many times have we heard that? But how many have pointed out that it is the media that creat...

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Spongebob Shenanigans

Dennis “Mr Krabs” Shanahan got his fingers burnt badly a while ago when he temporarily moved out of his journalistic comfort-zone and lost all his savings on the disastrous Krusty Pool project. As an experienced operator, Mr Krabs should have known better, but his cub reporter, Spongebob, can be ...

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The worst Opposition Leader in Australian political history

It really would be a one horse race if such a trophy were to be awarded. Tony Abbott would be so far in front it would be declared ‘no contest’. What is it that earns him such a dishonorable label? This piece puts together the pieces of this grotesque jigsaw, so grotesque that the pro...

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Monster Mayhem

At one time, the plutocrat, Victor R Murdochstein, was very proud of the Monster he had created. Undoubtedly, It had served him well by opposing everything that would threaten his interests and moneymaking schemes. But Victor has had an epiphany, or, the more cynical would say, realises his Mo...

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What is political leadership? Do you know?

Leadership is a recurring theme in political debate. It refuses to go away. It is a dependable subject for journalists wondering what to write about next and adds spice to any subject. Leadership means different things to different people, certainly to different journalists. Indeed, Alice in Won...

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The Convoluted Convoy

It was believed by many that the reign of the evil witch-queen, Gillard, would be short-lived. Hopes in this regard, however, were roundly dashed when the bitch escaped from the chaff bag and swam ashore. Now, understandably, the peasants are revolting and demanding a new election or at least the ...

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Does the media reflect public opinion, or create it?

The media is fond of insisting that its reporting reflects public opinion, what the people think and what they want. It rejects the notion that it creates public opinion, but might reluctantly concede it influences it. That it attempts to do so is undeniable. Its opinion pieces and commentary clea...

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Ol’ King Coal isn’t a merry ol’ soul

The Coalition corner-shop hasn’t been travelling too well over the last number of years. In fact, it has been on a downhill slide since Grandpa Johnnie got evicted and the lease was briefly taken over by Cousin Brendan. Brendan’s proprietorship, however, didn’t last that long bef...

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The media – the biter bit

This old-fashioned idiom, one my parents used, seems apt to describe the contemporary spirited rail against the MSM. For what seems like an eternity the media has been biting, biting all sorts of people from the highest in the land, our PM, to the lowliest, all in the pursuit of a good story that w...

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The Horcrux of the Matter

In the epilogue to “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”, the last book in the series about the wily young wizard, the author JK Rowling tells us that, after the demise of the evil Lord Voldemort, Harry and Ginny later get married and have three children. Similarly, Ron Weasley and Her...

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If Tony Abbott were PM

What would Tony Abbott do if this nation were so unfortunate as to have him elected as Prime Minister some time in the future? I can see your lips moving to mouth the words: “Who knows?” And our would-be PM, who by his own admission is a weathervane, would likely not know either, becau...

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A nice juicy tale

The British House of Commons’ “Court of Star-fruit Chamber” hasn’t been as busy since The Monkees and Milli Vanilli were arraigned before it on charges of pretending to sing on their own records. And, more recently, Rhubarb Rupert, Rebekah Radish and Jammy James have also be...

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Why does the media believe it must hold governments to account?

Newspapers should hold governments to account according to John Hartigan, News Limited chairman and chief executive. Interviewed on the ABC’s 7.30 last week by Leigh Sales, the actual words to this effect that appeared in the transcript were: “I think we take them to their official...

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Crowded out by IT

As we all now know, Rebekah Brooks has resigned from her position as CEO of News International. Furthermore, she was later arrested by London police on suspicions of phone hacking and corruption. However, if she is brought to trial and acquitted, where will she go? Will she help out in a leper co...

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The Tour de Nile

The Coalition’s adverse reaction to spelling out its policies, and accurately costing them, has caused them to enter, as another stunt and diversion, the Tour de Nile cycle race. However, Tony “Holy Moses” Abbott, Andrew “Aaron” Robb and the rest of the Coalition C...

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Has the political influence of the Murdoch media reached its nadir?

There is no need to mount an argument to support the view that all over the world, the Murdoch media has exercised an influence over politics. We all know it and countless journalists have borne testimony to it and have written and broadcast about it. Recent events portend a radical change that mu...

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The negativity syndrome infects the ABC

I wonder how many were as dismayed as I was at the tenor of this Sunday’s Insiders? With so many journalists in the carbon tax lockup, I suppose Barrie Cassidy was scraping the bottom of the barrel when he enlisted Niki Savva and Glenn Milne as panelists, but he must have known that this woul...

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The Tragic Magic Pudding

It’s been over a year’s hard Labor for Tony Abbott since the Indos went along with Julia Gillard and not him. And to say the least, he’s getting a bit toey. He knows that he needs to swing their support his direction, so as to get into the big chair. But, to make things worse at the moment, he’s...

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Slowing down the blur that is the colour and movement of a Tony Abbott speech

Tony Abbott giving his speech to the 55th Annual Liberal Party Federal Council, 2011 In the perpetual present that politics has become, worldwide, and especially in this country since Tony Abbott became Opposition Leader, where what happened and what was said yesterday is so last week, ...

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Putting the Squeeze on Mr Squiggle

Everybody knows the ABC has gone to the dogs, and it’s not just its News and Current Affairs Department we’re talking about. In fact, their Children’s Programming Section is badly in need of a facelift also. But, at least there, they are trying to do something about it. The powe...

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