• A return to good manners
    The ABC’s Virginia Trioli writes a ‘weekend read’ which is emailed out most Saturday
    mornings. A few weeks ago, there was the story about 'a bakery of the kind of layered,
    puffed, frosted, creamy delights that you'd usually only see on the table of your just-baptised
    cousin.' that has been trading for eleven years, earning a wonderful reputation for its
    products. Nat, the owner, had even being invited to be a guest on Masterchef.
  • Whatever it takes
    Some years ago, a plumber was telling me when they came back from the local
    pie shop with lunch to that day’s worksite, they heard someone inside. The
    plumber and his trades assistant were the only people scheduled to be on
    site that day, so they split up, covered both entrances to the building and discovered
    someone removing the copper pipe the plumber had spent the morning installing.
  • The real opposition
    Just as the government is trying to find its feet at times, the opposition Coalition is also in
    the same boat. The recent claims of ‘Airbus Albo’ made by the opposition along with their
    friends on ‘Sky after dark’ really haven’t jelled as an attack line when the government’s response,
    apparently backed up by the leaders of foreign nations, is they are attempting to undo the
    decade of neglect to this country’s foreign relationships by the Coalition when they were in power.
  • Avoiding the lunatic fringe
    The Australian political system is far from perfect. We have made an
    art form out of humiliation and ill treatment of refugees that choose to
    come to Australia. We have sat on our hands for over a decade and
    chosen to have an argument about emissions reduction while observing
    that we seem to be having more ‘one off’ climatic events than ever.
  • Privatise the Profits
    Despite concerns, there were no electricity shortages — load shedding — on
    Australia’s east coast during May or June. The outcome was managed by Australia’s
    Australian Electricity Market Operator (AEMO), the body responsible for maintaining
    the apparent delicate balance between supply and demand in a network that doesn’t
    have enough off-line storage to keep any surplus electricity produced until needed.
  • Another way of doing politics
    Are you are weary of contemporary politics as I am? Weary of the continual
    ‘left’ versus ‘right’ tussle? Weary of its sameness, day after boring day? Why
    is there always such a stark difference of opinion between those who seek to
    further enrich, to further advantage those who already have an abundance
    of this world’s bounty, and those who desire a more even distribution?

The Political Sword

Get the inside track on the media and government.

Be Human

About 12 months ago, we were asking if the world could ever return to ‘normal’ post the pandemic. Some were looking for equitable economic reform, others were looking for significant environmental reforms and others were looking for improvement in an area close to their personal experience or belief...

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The day Scott Morrison lost the next election

Note the date in your diary - 15 March 2021 - because the date itself is not memorable. You will never forget the day though - the day thousands of angry women gathered outside Parliament House in their March4Justice campaign to highlight the appalling misogyny and mistreatment of women, both in and...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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 ...

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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 ...

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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...

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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’...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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 ...

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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 ...

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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...

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