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Articles Archive for March 2012

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[31 Mar 2012 | No Comment | 932 views ]

AUSTRALIA’S transformation from the Whitlam years onward gets an ambitious, if occasionally uncertain, reappraisal.
Politics is a funny old business. Who would have thought, for example, that one day Malcolm Fraser would be praising Gough Whitlam? According to Fraser, Whitlam had a sense of Australian identity and a bold vision for our future as an independent country. Although Fraser argues that ”a succession of ministers, including Rex Connor, seriously let Gough down”, Whitlam had ”a grand idea of Australia with which I really wouldn’t disagree”.
For this ambitious and often engaging book, …

Columns »

[24 Mar 2012 | 4 Comments | 4,919 views ]

THE celebrated psychoanalyst Carl Jung once said: “Knowing your own darkness is the best method for dealing with the darknesses of other people.”
In many respects, former federal Labor leader Mark Latham is the self-appointed psychoanalyst of the Labor Party and he most certainly understands the darkness within the ALP.
A devoted student of the Labor Party and a talented writer, Latham reserves his harshest criticisms for those he describes as the “machine” men and women, who can be broadly defined as career politicians with little or no experience outside politics.
These so-called …

Columns »

[17 Mar 2012 | One Comment | 2,410 views ]

SAINT Patrick’s Day is a day to celebrate, but it also marks one of the most infamous incidents in Australian political history.
On March 17, 1948, in Brisbane, something very significant happened, something that deserves to be remembered – especially as Queensland gears up for a crucial state election.
On that day, Australia’s first and only Communist Party MP, Frederick (“Fred”) Woolnough Paterson, was savagely bashed by a plain-clothes policeman – almost certainly on the direct orders of authoritarian ALP state premier E.M. (“Ned”) Hanlon.
This brutal attack occurred while Fred Paterson was …

Columns »

[6 Mar 2012 | No Comment | 976 views ]

THE Supreme Court will rule today on whether The Australian Party can legally stand as an abbreviation of Katter’s Australian Party at Queensland’s March 24 election.
Such an abbreviation is, the latter argues, a form of discrimination.
Founded by the maverick federal Independent MP for the vast federal seat of Kennedy, Bob Katter, the party has announced that if its abbreviation is allowed to stand, it could challenge the result in up to 76 of the 89 seats in Queensland’s one-house parliament.
Katter’s attempts to change the way his party is represented on …

Reviews »

[3 Mar 2012 | One Comment | 5,314 views ]

BORN in London on February 24, 1733, educated at Eton and Clare Hall, Cambridge, and elected unopposed for the family seat of Whitchurch, Tommy Townshend entered the House of Commons when he was just 21.

At 49 he became secretary of state for home affairs with ministerial responsibility for the peace negotiations with the Americans. Although he had expressed some sympathy for the rebellious Americans during their war of independence, as a negotiator he held fast to what he perceived to be British interests, especially in what is now Canada.
Physically beefy …