No comment on operations: how Morrison’s media strategy took shape

The secrecy around Operation Sovereign Borders has been widely derided – immigration minister Scott Morrison’s media strategy not least of all. Built on motherhood statements, the withholding of information and tautology, journalists and the public have been infuriated by the lack of information on the fate of asylum seekers. The deliberate strategy to stonewall reporters appears to […]

Winning the debate on asylum seekers

The theme for Refugee Week 2014 is ‘Restoring Hope’. The reason we need to restore hope is that it has been destroyed by government policies.  It’s therefore important to understand what the government is doing and why. Ian Haney Lopez, the author of Dog Whistle Politics, correctly points out that ‘Dog whistle politics doesn’t come […]

It’s time to put NSW planning & development under the microscope

The Minister for Planning’s recent revelations about plans for developing some parts of Newcastle’s rail corridor – despite her predecessor’s December 2013 commitment and repeated assurances by government representatives at public forums as recently as March this year – not only demonstrates that there is one plan for public consumption and another for ‘insiders’, but […]

The birth of a lost generation

The Abbott government’s pre-election ‘Our Plan’ included a promise to help young people get jobs.  But by disembowelling the support services young people need to find suitable work they haven’t just broken yet another core promise:  they are creating a lost generation. Firstly, the government would be well aware that a quarter of young Australians aged […]

Australia’s food security

The latest report from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change paints a grim picture for the future of Australia’s food security. Its publication coincides with the recent release of the final report from the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Olivier De Schutter, which details the failures of the ‘Green Revolution’ […]

Carr, Beazley & the Grove

In July 2012 Australian Ambassador to the US Kim Beazley and then Minister for Foreign Affairs Bob Carr attended the Bohemian Grove festival near San Francisco at taxpayers’ expense. The “festival” itself, the reason they attended and what they actually did there to warrant taxpayer funding remain shrouded in mystery. Richard Nixon described the Bohemian […]