Politics

Shaun Crowe reviews 'Reboot: A democracy makeover to empower Australia’s voters' by Richard Walsh

Shaun Crowe
29 August 2017

For the past few years, teaching at the Australian National University, I have asked first year politics students whether they would personally consider joining a political party. The question usually produces a few enthusiastic Labor activists, one or two Greens members, and the odd brave Young Liberal. Once, a student flirted with the Sex Party. But the overwhelmi ... More

Colin Wight reviews 'The End of Europe: Dictators, demagogues, and the coming Dark Age' by James Kirchick

Colin Wight
29 August 2017

The obscurest epoch is today.’

Robert Louis Stevenson, Across the Plains (1892)

A book that attempts to predict the course of contemporary affairs is always a dangerous enterprise. Events, political events, in particular, have a way of turning like the proverbial worm. Brexit and the election of President Trump are simply the lat ... More

Lyndon Megarrity reviews 'The Show: Another side of Santamaria’s movement' by Mark Aarons and John Grenville

Lyndon Megarrity
29 August 2017

The Movement was a secret organisation which radically reduced the power of the Communist Party of Australia (CPA) within the union movement during the 1940s and 1950s. Initiated by B.A. Santamaria, the Movement was very active in several Australian states and worked with the general knowledge and approval of key Catholic Church bishops. The Movement (or the Show) u ... More

'The same-sex marriage debate' by Peter Rose

Peter Rose
16 August 2017

For decades, centuries, millennia, homosexuals (here as elsewhere) have been insulted, blackmailed, beaten, incarcerated, and murdered. Even now homosexuality remains one of the principal More

Alison Broinowski reviews 'The Violent American Century: War and Terror since World War II' by John W. Dower

Alison Broinowski
26 July 2017

A week after the Manchester Arena bombing, it emerged in the British media that MI5 had been warned about some of the terrorists but had apparently done nothing. M16, moreover, had reporte More

Mark Chou reviews ‘Democracy: Stories from the long road to freedom’ by Condoleezza Rice

Mark Chou
23 July 2017

What are the cornerstones of democracy? If you ask Condoleezza Rice who, as the sixty-sixth US secretary of state, was responsible for introducing democracy to autocratic states like Afgha More

Bernadette Brennan reviews 'Draw Your Weapons' by Sarah Sentilles

Bernadette Brennan
23 July 2017

Sarah Sentilles’s Draw Your Weapons is one of the most erudite, original, and thought-provoking books I have ever read. A philosophical and moral meditation on pain, torture, an More

John Rickard reviews 'Of Labour and Liberty: Distributism in Victoria 1891–1966' by Race Mathews

John Rickard
30 May 2017

I was a student at Sydney University when, in 1954, the embattled Labor leader Dr H.V. Evatt went public, accusing a small group of Labor MPs of disloyalty, their attempt to gain control of the party being directed from a source outside the labour movement. He identified the Melbourne News Weekly as their mouthpiece. Few had heard of B.A. (‘Bob’) Santam ... More

Johanna Leggatt reviews 'Depends What You Mean By Extremist: Going rogue with Australian deplorables' by John Safran

Johanna Leggatt
30 May 2017

David Marr’s Quarterly Essay, The White Queen: One Nation and the politics of race (2017) is a comprehensive and scholarly look at Pauline Hanson’s appeal, and what her revival, tepid as it may be in an international context, says about the way race has been exploited in the bread and circuses of politics. John Safran is equally interested in race, and ... More

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