• Ross Fitzgerald and Lyndal Moor at Catalins's on Valentines Day 2019
    Ross Fitzgerald and Lyndal Moor at Catalina's on Valentines Day 2019
  • Ross with comedian Barry Humphries. Sydney 2019.
  • Ross's 74th birthday
  • Ross & Lyndal celebrate their 42nd wedding anniversary
  • Ross with Archibald Prize winning Australian artist John Olsen
    Ross with Archibald Prize winning Australian artist John Olsen
  • Lyndal, Emerald and Adrian with our grandchild, Ava
  • Ross's dog Maddie
  • Ross and Lyndal's 40th anniversary
  • Daughter Emerald with our grandchild Ava
  • Ross becomes a member of The Order of Australia.
  • Ross with Gerry Adams, President of Sinn Féin.
    Ross with Gerry Adams, President of Sinn Féin.

Columns »

[8 Mar 2019 | No Comment | 24 views ]

There’s a great deal riding on Warringah

            ROSS FITZGERALD

It might be a little unfair to describe the announced departures of very senior Liberals Julie Bishop and Christopher Pyne as ‘rats leaving a sinking ship’, but they’d hardly be scurrying for the door if they thought their ministerial careers would continue. With only four Liberal cabinet ministers left from the Abbott government’s starting line-up (Morrison, Dutton, Hunt and Cormann), not only has there been a changing of the guard but there won’t be much leadership experience to draw on if, as expected, …

Reviews »

[23 Feb 2019 | No Comment | 13 views ]

Cavan Station: Its Early History, the Riley Legacy and the Murdoch Vision

By Nicola Crichton-Brown. HarperCollins, 232pp, $49.99 (HB)

Review by ROSS FITZGERALD

If anything is a reminder that Australia rode on the sheep’s back, it is Cavan Station. This massive sheep-run near the NSW town of Yass is the sort of pastoral property that helped shape our nation’s economic and social future.

Cavan Station, now owned by Rupert Murdoch — co-chairman of News Corporation, publisher of The Australian — has a special place in the history of …

Uncategorised »

[18 Feb 2019 | No Comment | 11 views ]

Too-clever Shorten has given his political rivals a potential election-winning issueby Ross Fitzgerald Bill Shorten was too clever by half last week, and in more ways than people have yet noticed. By giving doctors the right to order boatpeople to Australia for medical assessment, he’s watered down Australia’s tough border protection regime, made deaths at sea more likely and drawn attention to an issue that’s the Coalition’s strength and Labor’s weakness.He’s put national security at risk just to win a vote on the floor of the federal parliament and embarrass the government. …

Columns »

[14 Feb 2019 | No Comment | 14 views ]

             ROSS FITZGERALD

The seat of Warringah, on Sydney’s northern beaches, has
never been marginal and has always been held for the conservative side of
politics. Nevertheless, it’s likely to be one of the most watched seats in the
coming federal campaign because the Labor Party, the Greens, and, it seems, a
handful of Liberals want to discredit the local MP, former PM Tony Abbott, by
driving him out of federal parliament.

  Late last year, the ‘Daily Telegraph’ reported union sources saying that they’d spend hundreds of …

Reviews »

[2 Feb 2019 | No Comment | 17 views ]

The Squatters

Barry Stone

Allen&Unwin

2019, pp. 245, $29.99

By ROSS FITZGERALD

It’s tricky writing about the European
settlement of Australia. One has to keep in mind the fact that the
successes of settlement were predicated on the damage inflicted on the
peoples who lived here first.

Barry Stone’s The Squatters is a fine piece of carefully
researched popular history. And there’s no doubt that the story of Australia’s
pastoral pioneers is fascinating.

Stone tells the epic tale of those mainly British settlers and
selectors who spread across Australia claiming land,
constructing windmills and fence-lines, dry-stone walls and storehouses,
livestock yards and droving routes, a number of which are still etched …

Uncategorised »

[29 Jan 2019 | No Comment | 52 views ]

Voters are in a punishing mood but Labor’s tax plans will punish us all

ROSS FITZGERALD

Having spent the Australia Day weekend declaring what a wonderful country we have, we can now go back to denouncing as incompetent rogues the people who have led it.

Our tendency to assert our country’s surpassing magnificence while excoriating as a class the people who have been in charge is odd. We love our country but we are not so keen on its political leaders, and, at least in recent times, can’t wait to show them the …

Uncategorised »

[27 Jan 2019 | No Comment | 10 views ]

Books that changed me

Ross Fitzgerald is the author of 40 books, most recently ‘So Far, So Good’, co-written with Antony Funnell and published by Hybrid.

THE KING JAMES BIBLE

While attending St Mark’s Anglican Church in Brighton in Melbourne in the 1950s, I started reading ‘The King James Version of the Bible.’ This inspiring translation had a huge impact on my appreciation of the wonders of the English language and the possibilities of reading and writing about history. Although I have been a devout atheist for decades, reading the King James Bible …

Uncategorised »

[24 Jan 2019 | No Comment | 22 views ]

       Is our democracy up for grabs?

            by  ROSS FITZGERALD

   Is it possible to buy your way into the federal parliament? It seems that we are about to find out via restored rich-lister Clive Palmer’s absolutely unprecedented multi-million dollar advertising barrage for a return to the parliament he so ignominiously exited just three years ago.

Exactly how much MPs and political parties spend in order to help get themselves elected is quite hard to pin down. There are the spending returns that registered parties are required to lodge with the Australian Electoral Commission that …

Uncategorised »

[15 Jan 2019 | No Comment | 36 views ]

by ROSS FITZGERALD

There’s been another death of a young woman caused by consum­ption of illicit drugs at a music event, this time in western Sydney.

Yet despite some impassioned opposition, including letters to this newspaper, the debate about pill testing in Australia appears to have reached a tipping point.

It now seems more a matter of when rather than if trials will commence across the country. Indeed the family of the 19-year-old woman who died on Saturday have come out begging NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian to allow a pill testing trial.

Every year …

Uncategorised »

[7 Jan 2019 | No Comment | 34 views ]

The government can use the opposition’s tax agenda as an election-winning plank

 BY ROSS FITZGERALD

The Coalition has done its best to make itself unelectable. But voters don’t just ask whether the government deserves to lose, they also ask if the opposition deserves to win — and a good look at the Labor Party’s policies should make it even less electable than today’s government.

The Liberal Party needs voters to be thinking about their immediate economic self-interest rather than whether or not Malcolm Turnbull should still be prime minister.

The challenge for Scott Morrison …

Uncategorised »

[26 Dec 2018 | No Comment | 22 views ]

Tony Abbott, Barnaby Joyce and, yes, Julie Bishop are among the most talented, experienced and energetic Coalition MPs. Yet, for different reasons, they are seen by some as among the most divisive. Nonetheless, if Scott Morrison is to have any chance of winning next year’s federal election, he should bring them into his cabinet; or, if not, offer them each an influential position outside of federal parliament.

The political reality for the Prime Minister is that they should be in or out.

In relation to Abbott, Joyce and Bishop, Morrison — who obviously …