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[28 Nov 2018 | No Comment | ]

by Ross Fitzgerald
Stephen Harper, the former Canadian conservative prime minister, has been in Australia talking about politics and leadership in the age of disruption. Harper is the first senior political practi­tioner, as opposed to commentator, who has tried to make sense of where the conservative side of politics is headed in the age of Donald Trump and Brexit.
For eight years, until 2015, Harper ran an orthodox centre-right government cutting taxes, balancing budgets, signing free trade deals and maintaining high immigration. But he accepts that this won’t work any more. …

Reviews »

[19 Nov 2018 | No Comment | ]

Let Him Eat Cake
by Richard Laidlaw
Review of Ross Fitzgerald and Antony Funnell,’So Far, So Good : An Entertainment'(Hybrid Books, Melbourne, 2018)
IT must be very difficult being a political satirist these days. So many politicians, to a man and woman, get underfoot with plots that would outdo a Goon Show episode and leave their writers wringing their hands in frustration: Why couldn’t we think of that?
So we owe a deep debt of gratitude to Griffith University historian professor Ross Fitzgerald and ABC broadcaster Antony Funnell for giving us …

Columns »

[5 Nov 2018 | One Comment | ]

It hasn’t taken the former prime minister long to work out that his successor had a role in his downfall. The spill vote against Malcolm Turnbull carried 45 to 40. The leadership vote went to Scott Morrison over Peter Dutton 45 to 40. Do the sums: Turnbull had 40 votes; Dutton had 40 votes; but Morrison had five votes that he first used against Turnbull and then added to Turnbull’s votes to make himself Prime Minister.
But that’s politics, as Turnbull should know, having played it …