• 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.

What Julia Gillard DOES stand for

Are you as tired as I am of the words: ‘What does Julia Gillard stand for?’ There seems an endless stream of journalists, bloggers, and of course members of the Opposition who repeat this question over and again, until it sounds like a mantra chanted mindlessly. What does it actually me...

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A tribute to Greg Jericho

Knowing how much visitors to The Political Sword have appreciated the writings of Greg Jericho on Grog’s Gamut, this short piece is to thank you Greg for giving us such delight for so long. Your contribution to political discourse has been outstanding. We have enjoyed your forensic dissection o...

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Extreme Makeover Takeover

Tony Abbott reckons questions about his leadership and (lack of) policies could come thick and fast any day now, so he has bummed the money off Lindsay Fox to take out a lease on the ramshackle Nauru asylum-seeker centre. Being in such a state of disrepair, it makes the house that jack built look l...

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If you are not scared about the effects of global warming, you ought to be

As if there isn’t enough to be scared about on the physical plane, and we saw even more this week from New Anthropocene covering the ‘State of the Ocean’ report that shows that the seas are dying and time frames for actions are ‘shrinking’, now we have scary economic ne...

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Looking down from the grandstand - where the experts are

We are in a vast grandstand looking down on a match between traditional rivals. There are rusted on supporters for both teams who could never barrack for anyone else, and who urge their teams on and loudly abuse the other, no matter how well the opponents play; they can do no good. The umpires &nda...

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Getting sucked in by a séance

It’s Friday arvo, close to tea-time, and the Minister for Climate Change, Greg Combet, is walking down St Mary’s road in Sydney. Suddenly, he notices, on the other side and walking in the same direction, Tony Abbott. For his part, as he reaches the Catholic Cathedral, Tones veers off a...

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Is your moral compass better than mine?

Isn’t ‘moral compass’ a catchy phrase? And isn’t losing it a pretty serious indictment? It suggests that anyone who has lost his or her ‘moral compass’ is to be looked down upon as an unworthy reprobate. Andrew Wilkie introduced the term to label PM Gillard and...

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Fair and balanced discourse – is that what we want?

The skirmish that erupted here on The Political Sword last week with one blogsite labelling this one as exhibiting "unremitting one-eyed left wing bias", and another accusing the site of ignoring or demeaning opinions that conflict with those held by the majority of those who comment here, warrants ...

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Strutting the catwalk in Carbon Alley

Life used to be simple in Carbon Alley. The Fat Cats, Gina ‘Ginger Mog’ Rinehart, and Clive ‘Cheshire Cat’ Palmer, have been running the place, aided and abetted by their cronies, Officers Dibble (Tony Abbott) and Dribble (David Bushby). However, many of the alley cats, led...

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What have we done to deserve an Opposition Leader like Tony Abbott?

I’m fed up with Tony Abbott and most of his Coalition team. I’m fed up with his unremitting negativity. I’m fed up with his destructiveness. I’m fed up with his nastiness. I’m fed up with his attitude towards women. I’m fed up with his rabble-rousing tactics. ...

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The Waltons get the willies

As one of the foremost Forgotten Families, the Coalition Waltons have nothing better to do than to retire early for the night. However, still active behind the scenes, John-Boy (Howard) Walton can’t sleep. John-Boy: Psssst...Tones! You awake, son? Tones: Yeah, pa – can’t sle...

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‘Post-Truth Politics’

Or, How the ALP Should Play the Game of Political Pragmatism, Just Not as the Hollow Man Abbott Does. So, you will by now have had seared into your brains the immortal words Tony Abbott uttered to his party room this past week: “In a choice between policy purity and political pragmatism, ...

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Julia Gillard’s Fireside Chat - Your Heath Mark 2

This is a second attempt to craft a set of messages about health that PM Gillard might transmit, modified in the light of your comments and suggestions, some of which have been included verbatim. An attempt has been made to generalize and personalize the ‘chat’ using ‘we’, &l...

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Julia Gillard’s Fireside Chats – Your Health

This is the second of a series in which contributors to The Political Sword are attempting to fashion examples of messages that our Prime Minister might give in her 'Fireside Chats'. The idea of Fireside Chats came from David Horton in a piece titled: The ragged trousered philanthropist on The Wate...

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A Minder, kinder, gentler polity

It’s an early morning start for Tony “Arthur Daley” Abbott at his ACTION MOTORS car-yard (“Arthur’s Commodores – Trade-Ins Or Newies”). However, as he alights from his car, he can’t help noticing that his rivals across the road (Gillard’s ...

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Julia Gillard’s Fireside Chats – A Price on Carbon

Introduction by Ad astra In a piece titled: The ragged trousered philanthropist on The Watermelon Blog, it was David Horton who suggested that PM Gillard should consider instituting ‘Fireside Chats’.  Quoting from Wikipedia, he related previous attempts at ‘fireside chats&rsqu...

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The curse of the leading question

It is often the nature of the question that determines the answer. Moreover, no matter what style of question is posed, the authority of the question is conditioned by the power relationship between the questioner and the questioned. People in a submissive position are more inclined to give the expe...

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A day can be a lifetime

G’day Swordians! Do you remember, or can you imagine, the heady days when The Beatles toured Australia in 1964? Unfortunately, the Mersey Mop-heads never returned to our sunburnt shores, but, fortunately, their spirit was kept alive Down Under by massive vinyl-record sales and due homage paid ...

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Clowns to the Left of me, Jokers to the Right, Here I am, Stuck in the Middle with the ALP

Recently I have noticed, as have others, that as The Greens’ voice gets louder, and as the Conservative Party of Tony Abbott takes more positions on issues than the Kama Sutra, as it drags Labor to the Right or outflanks it on the Left if it suits them to do so, so long as it is in opposit...

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We’re ‘aving Nan of it

Joannie Taylor (‘Nan’) from the Catherine Tate Show is visiting Australia to spend some time with her grandson, Jamie, who has got a student visa to study at Rooty Hill University. On campus, Jamie has joined the Young Labor Club, and has invited a few of his new chums over to meet Nan. ...

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