In politics, we are always trying to penetrate the outer layer and gain some insight into what’s going on inside the machine.
Articles from Inside Story
If there was ever any doubt that the 17 March Batman by-election would be fought on the issue of a coalmine 2200 kilometres to the north, then Greens candidate Alex Bhathal removed it early at a forum on Tuesday night at Northcote Town Hall. Up on stage with Labor’s Ged Kearney and three fringe-party candidates, she fronted around 200 Batman voters in a t-shirt that read ADANI — NO MEANS NO.
Hardly a day goes by without another tale emerging of the apparently malign influence of the People’s Republic of China on Australian life. The growing power and assertiveness of China in the region and the wider world has become the grand narrative of our times, the single immutable fact around which all else must be arranged. What we cannot change, we must learn to live with.
To stop fighting, lay down his weapon, and surrender to the Imperial Japanese Army was about the riskiest thing an Australian soldier could do during the second world war.
When Timor-Leste terminated the CMATS treaty with Australia early last year, it overturned its fifty-year moratorium on boundary negotiations. Ending the decade-old agreement was essential to securing its objective of a permanent maritime boundary.
Academy Awards nights are tribal ceremonies, ritual gatherings at which stories are told about the culture’s storytellers. As anthropologists know, ceremonies like these are protracted and exhaustingly repetitive. Hierarchies are affirmed, families and ancestors thanked, initiates welcomed, talismans bestowed.
A hundred years ago, on 25 March 1918, as German shells rained down on Paris, Claude Debussy died of cancer. He was fifty-five. By today’s standards, it was a life cut short, yet during the twenty-five years of his mature career, he changed music in ways that are arguably still not widely understood.
He’s the Nat who gave a Gonski. In charge of schools in New South Wales from 2011 to 2017, Adrian Piccoli was a sometimes-lonely conservative voice championing needs-based school funding. Whether his stance was inspired by the experience of representing a rural seat in the state’s southwest, or by a Catholic sense of social justice, or simply by a temperament inclined to consensus, it’s almost impossible to imagine the Gonski reforms without him.
I write to you because you may well be the next federal minister for education, and the second most powerful figure, in a government with a mandate for significant change. And I write because the word is out that you are looking for bold policies for schools but not getting much help in developing them.
Candidates running in the world’s largest electorate face an unusual problem: what can they give potential voters that they don’t already have? Seriously: what can the men and women who want to represent Italy’s Africa-Asia-Antarctica-Oceania electorate, which takes in Australia’s large Italian communities, possibly do for Italian citizens abroad? And, more importantly, what might those citizens need from the Italian state?