• Mutually assured destruction
    A few years ago, we were in Canada. One cool and wet day in
    St Jacobs, Ontario (a couple of hours west of Toronto), we walked
    into a building dedicated to The Mennonite Story because it
    looked dry and warm inside. Unsurprisingly, the building went someway
    towards explaining the history and beliefs of the Mennonite Church
  • Is adversarial politics damaging our democracy?
    It was twelve years ago that I wrote ‘Is adversarial politics
    damaging our democracy?’ Some of that piece is reproduced
    below because recent political events demonstrate that its
    messages are as relevant today as they were then.
  • Nationalism really isn't easy
    If you said that someone has money to burn, you mean that
    they have far more money than they need or that they simply
    spend their money on things that you think are unnecessary
    or not socially acceptable.
  • 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’.

The Political Sword

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The day the Canberra Press Gallery believed it was governing the country

It’s not possible to pin down what day that was. Takeovers can be abrupt or ever so subtle. This one was subtle, at least initially. It probably derived from about the time that Kevin Rudd retreated from his response to climate change, his ETS, and put it on the back burner for a couple of ...

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The Day News Limited Took Over Our ABC

Mark the day – Sunday 13 March 2011, the day Andrew Bolt took over as compère of the ABC’s Insiders, bullied his way into the dialogue and eventually ruled the roost, leaving Barrie Cassidy looking defeated. That day the panelists comprised three current and past News Limited jou...

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The People’s Revolt goes ‘On the Buses’

G’day Swordians! A group of Coalition supporters need transport to get themselves along to one of the Peoples’ Revolt rallies. They have put an ad in the Oz and have been contacted by a taxi crowd called CT (“CabTeam”), under the proprietorship of J Gillard and W Swan. How...

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It Ain't Half Hot Mum

G’day Swordians! The cultured choristers of the Royal Regiment of Australian Artillery Concert Party, under the tyrannical oversight of Warrant Officer Tony “STOP THE...” Abbott, have been sent to East Timor to entertain the troops. And, at 50-degrees-plus in the shade, it Ain&rs...

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Tony Abbott’s Great Big New Tax

No, that can’t be right – Tony Abbott and Great Big New Tax in the one phrase. Isn’t it Julia Gillard and the Labor Government that’s addicted to the Great Big New Tax – on Everything! Well no. Not to be outdone by Julia, Tony has his own Great Big New Tax – in...

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Simplicity – the opiate of the people

It was Karl Marx who said: "Religion is the opiate of the masses". An opiate relieves pain, numbs, and before it wears off, gives a sense that all is well with the world. But knowing that opiates are addictive, Marx went on to say: "The first requisite for the happiness of the people is the abolitio...

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The War Against the Kleptocrats & the Oligarchs Starts Here! Now! Today!

I know this blog will probably be read by 2 men and a dog sitting by their computer, also that my Call to Arms will have all the effect on the political discourse of the world at large of a cry in the wilderness, however I decided to set my sights pretty high this time. I'm as 'Mad as Hell, and I j...

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The ugliness of political opportunism

While most politicians are political opportunists from time to time, as are some partisan journalists, some have made an art form of this form of political behaviour. This piece cites some examples and questions the place of opportunism in politics. There are hundreds of examples of naked political ...

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Leadership – what do the people want?

There is a gathering storm about Julia Gillard’s leadership. Pundits express learned opinions about the leadership she exhibits, and more stridently about what they believe she ought to. Some predict that she will never make the grade. Mungo MacCallum believes she is an example of the ‘P...

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The Fox Fish Rots from the Head Down

Ever since the 'kindly' Commission Salesman bowled up to my front door and enthusiastically informed me that I was lucky enough to have Foxtel running down my street now(!), and for the 'Low Introductory Price' that he was offering me I could have access to all those shows that you'll never get on F...

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Question Time – Rumble in the Jungle Book

G’day Swordians! Question Time in the House of Representatives was a bit demure this week, so both sides decided to come back for a bit of overtime and try to get one over on the other. However, the extra session was no sooner underway when Tony ‘King Louie’ Abbott and his troop of...

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Abbott in the Toilet: Shit Happens, Tony

Katharine Murphy wrote in The Age on Thursday in an article titled Foul Day At The Office For Abbott:     "Getting stuck on a rhetorical stumble does us no good when there's serious criticisms to be made of opposition tactics. “Tony Abbott is serially scatological. It's a pro...

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Poisoning the well of our good nature

Julia Gillard's earlobes, Tony Abbott's budgie-smugglers. Is discussion about politicians' appearance getting too personal?• Yes, it's irrelevant 81.83% (5440 votes) • No, it's fair game 18.17% (1208 votes) Total votes: 6648It was about the time that this poll came out, beside the now infa...

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The Right to be Angry

Have you noticed how much anger there is in the community? Listen to talkback radio and hear the anger there. If you have the stomach to listen to shock jocks like Alan Jones you will hear plenty there. There is road rage and a level of anger and assaults in our city centres, often alcohol-fuelled, ...

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The media needs to pull up its socks in 2011

If it doesn’t, it will become increasingly irrelevant to thoughtful people, and will serve only to provide flimflam for the unthinking, the disinterested, the feckless. In case some of you are groaning, ‘not hammering the media again’, my response is ‘yes, yet again’, f...

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Welcome to The Political Sword 2011

Whereas in previous years we have taken a break at the end of the year, this time we have kept a thread going at the request of some users of The Political Sword. They have enjoyed the conversation with each other, and have missed it whenever the site was down, as it was recently as we upgraded to ...

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TOE-KNEE’s Australia Day

G’day Swordians! I trust you had a great Australia Day. I had a very interesting time myself – did a bit of backpacking in Queensland and actually met up with an old aboriginal guy when I was doing a bit of walking there. He was boiling his billy, and as I was feeling a bit peckish mysel...

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Why can’t we live together? We’re all part of the human race, after all

As I intimated in a comment on my previous blog, I was going to strike out in a philosophical direction for this, my latest blog. I thought it might be especially pertinent in the light of the two major tragedies that have occurred in the Western Hemisphere over the End of Year/New Year ...

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What were you expecting - fireworks?

I was just watching some vintage Paul Keating in full rhetorical flight the other day as I was recuperating and contemplating the ramifications of Wayne Swan's Banking Package, released in early December. Which seems eons ago when you've been to Hell and back, as I have been since then. And it o...

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What does Tony Abbott stand for?

As a political exercise, why not begin by jotting down what you are convinced Tony Abbott stands for? It may not take you long. Don’t feel inadequate if you can muster no more than ‘end the waste, pay back debt, stop new taxes and stop the boats’. But wait, there’s a change i...

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