The Religious Right Aren’t Anti-Discrimination, They’re PRO Discrimination

I’ve already written about religion and discrimination in Australia here and here, about the fundamentally un-Australian, constitutionally dangerous and inegalitarian nature of mixing religion with our secular law. However the publication of the second drafts of the proposed “Religious Discrimination” legislation, and the collected examples of permitted exemptions published in The Guardian have prompted me […]

How To Drink From The Firehose

In the video clip, the man hits the woman in the face. There’s no audio, and it’s a very short clip, less than two seconds, so it’s impossible to say what happened beforehand, or what happens afterwards. All you see in the video is the pair of them, some distance away: the man, hitting the […]

The Climate Emergency Viewed As An Alien Invasion

We all know the plot—it has been around since H. G. Wells’ War Of The Worlds, and has been re-imagined many times since then. The intentions of the aliens vary, from exploratory to utopian to malign, but Earth’s response is formulaic: Chaos Frantic international discussions National differences put aside as humans unite as one behind […]

#AllOurRights

[This is an archived version of the original article. The updated article is here] One of the pillars of an open, democratic society is a free Press, however that freedom has two parts: the freedom to investigate has to be matched by an obligation to publish. Otherwise it’s not a free Press, it’s an organ […]

#RightToKnow is a con job

The Press is talking loudly at the moment about #RightToKnow, but that is, bluntly, a con. What’s more, it’s a con that distracts us from all the other real rights for which we, and the Press, should really be fighting. For a start, although the Press claims it’s about our “right” to know, what it’s […]

Wiping up another Dutton smear

On Wednesday the Minister for Home Affairs did what he and the Prime Minister have consistently claimed, and complained, he couldn’t do.[1] He blocked a medevac transfer, using the medevac law he and the PM had previously sworn made it impossible for him to block transfers. Apart from the stunning hypocrisy and barefaced lying this […]

Is it a cat, is it a window, is it a brand? No, it’s DUTTON

Look, down in the gutter, is it a cat, is it a window, is it a brand? No, it’s PETER DUTTON! Recently the Minister for Home Affairs, the Honourable Peter Dutton, suggested that certain protestors should have their welfare benefits cut, face mandatory jail sentences, and be publicly shamed. Even for Dutton this seemed pretty […]

We are all equal under the law

Or – a dam doesn’t care where the river starts In a secular society like Australia the source of an individual’s moral code should be irrelevant; what matters is their behaviour. If the law says you may not throw stones at people, then if two individuals both throw stones at someone, one of them isn’t […]

Estate Sale – Lot #4

The Unsung Heroes Of Election ’19 Just as the automobile displaced the horse and buggy, so too assembly-line car workers displaced the craftsmen who made buggies and buggy-whips, and as their profession died out, with it sadly died the skills and knowledge of their craft. Today we’re witnessing another such extinction: journalism. This piece is […]

Arguing with a tornado, 6,000 times

You don’t reason with a tornado. It’s not a sentient being. You don’t reason with toddlers. They haven’t developed the capacity for logical thought. Even in adults, reason is pointless against grief, rage or belief, because they’re not based on logic or rational thought. They’re supported by emotions and values, not logic and facts. Which […]

Lies, Damn Lies, and Wishful Thinking

Death of Pauline Hanson’s One Nation greatly exaggerated. Writing about the Queensland election results I am struck by the similarities with the press coverage of the 45th Presidential elections in the U.S.A. which I wrote about previously. Here, as there, there have been multiple, almost 180 degree shifts in predictions about the election result. Here, as […]

The Alexander Gambit – how to resign in five moves

MP John Alexander resigned his seat in parliament on Saturday, five days after Fairfax Media revealed that it was highly likely he was a dual citizen, and nearly four months after the issue of dual citizenship became front page news with Scott Ludlam’s surprise resignation. While I’m not John Alexander, here’s my attempt at what […]

A Regrettable Want Of Candour

Poor George. All his life he has aspired to gravitas but has never advanced beyond turgid, pompous and, in this case, petulant. You would think that after a 7-0 thrashing in the High Court a responsible Attorney-General would bow graciously to the collective and unanimous wisdom of the highest court in the land, say a […]