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Articles tagged with: Australian politics

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[11 Apr 2011 | No Comment | ]

WITH what seems to be his somewhat premature decision to prevent the merger of the Singapore and Australian stock exchanges, Treasurer Wayne Swan is once again in the media spotlight.
This concentrated attention can only increase when Swan who is Acting Prime Minister until Julia Gillard returns from leave tomorrow hands down the May 10 federal budget. One doesn’t have to have a crystal ball to predict that the 2011 budget will be one of the toughest in the last decade, as the Gillard Government fights to bring the books back …

Columns »

[15 Jan 2011 | One Comment | ]

A COMPANY or product brand is a highly valuable asset that can change customer behaviour and shift demand through the creation of a positive image.
A brand’s equity is derived from the goodwill and name recognition earned over time, which in business translates into higher sales and profit margins over those of competitors.
Take Facebook. Over a remarkably short period, Facebook has built a brand image that represents all that is current, creative and cool in the technology world. IBM, on the other hand, has struggled with its brand over decades but …

Columns »

[13 Jan 2011 | No Comment | ]

BACK in the 1960s and 1970s, before the internet, before WikiLeaks, there was something called the alternative press. Sometimes it was called the underground press, with echoes of armed partisans resisting an occupying army.
It claimed to offer the real information, all the news the media refused to print and that governments tried to suppress.
But what if it was all a fraud? Sydney-based Michael Wilding’s new novel ‘The Prisoner Of Mount Warning’ explores this hypothesis.
What if the alternative, or some of it, was not alternative at all but run by an …

Columns »

[30 Dec 2010 | No Comment | ]

FRUSTRATED by the NSW Parliament, which has made it virtually impossible for the Australian Sex Party to be registered for the state election, its convenor Fiona Patten has hit upon a unique strategy.
White Pages in hand, Patten is currently actively seeking at least 15 people in NSW who have the word “sex” in their name – Sexton, Sexsmith and so on.
If she can find enough, and if they agree with Sex Party policies, this will enable the group to form a ticket for the NSW Upper House even though the …

Columns »

[11 Sep 2010 | 2 Comments | ]

Her political inheritance was replete with riches but the Queensland Premier has squandered it
ANNA Bligh is only surviving as Queensland Premier because there is no one else willing to lead the ALP into near certain defeat at the next state election due in 2012. The Bligh government is a political disaster lurching from one terrible poll result to the next.
There is no doubt the poor standing of the Bligh government was a significant contributing factor to the ALP’s poor showing in the federal election. Based on a post-redistribution assessment, the …

Columns »

[28 Aug 2010 | No Comment | ]

IN political terms, the stakes in the aftermath of the 2010 election have rarely, if ever, been higher. The disunited Australian Labor Party must salvage something from the wreckage of the election after its disastrous campaign left Julia Gillard a damaged leader with her political future resting on her capacity to form government.
The machine men that installed Gillard into the leadership are also sweating on the outcome given that their present, and in some cases aspiring, political careers are hanging in the balance.
Bill Shorten is positioning himself for Gillard’s inevitable …

Columns »

[27 Aug 2010 | No Comment | ]

The hiatus in federal politics since the election last weekend says a lot about the state of the two-party system in Australia.
Clearly, it’s in a state of flux.
As of last weekend, there are now three major parties in Australian politics and that will not change for many years to come. The Greens will be a part of government in Australia for the foreseeable future, as the Liberal Democrats are in England and so will the issues that they represent. Many pundits are saying that this will destabilise good government, but …

Reviews »

[7 Aug 2010 | No Comment | ]

In 1982, Blanche d’Alpuget’s ‘ROBERT J HAWKE: A BIOGRAPHY’ was published to critical and popular acclaim. Her new book ‘HAWKE: THE PRIME MINISTER’ starts with Bob Hawke taking over as federal Labor leader from the unprepossessing Bill Hayden. In a matter of weeks, Hawke defeats Malcolm Fraser and, in the process, achieves his late mother’s, and his own, lifelong goal of becoming prime minister of Australia, our twenty-third PM in fact.
In the main, this four hundred page political biography of d’Alpuget’s silver- haired husband is well written and even handed. …

Reviews »

[2 Aug 2010 | No Comment | ]

In 2006 the West Australian- based federal education minister, Julie Bishop, wanted us all to know more about our history. In particular, she urged that young Australians “should study the past to understand the present, so that they can make informed decisions for the future”.
But as William McInnes explains, history comes in all shapes and sizes, so that by 2007 “the page had turned upon the government of which Ms Bishop had been a member, presenting a new minister with the opportunity to speak about history and identity and …

Books »

[12 Jun 2010 | 3 Comments | ]
Book launch: Alan (“The Red Fox”) Reid

You may be interested to know that this fine film-noir front cover photograph of ALAN (“THE RED FOX”) REID almost never saw the light of day because two influential people, who shall remain nameless, did not want to see in 2010 a photo of someone smoking a cigarette! How about that? Yet sadly, although he stopped drinking and gambling, Reid never stopped smoking, and eventually died of lung and stomach cancer.
Speaking of photos, in our biography of Alan Reid the mystery of the ALP’s Faceless Men story and photos has …

Books »

[10 Jun 2010 | One Comment | ]
Alan Reid’s life, a history of Oz political journalism

READING a biography of the controversial and legendary Australian journalist Alan Reid, it’s hard not to be nostalgic for the days when journos chain-smoked at their desks, wore hats, and got their best tips over the poker table.
Reid, who died in 1987 after covering 20 federal elections, is worthy of a book as he combined some of the best and worst aspects of political journalism. Not only was he a superb chronicler of the news, he was also a player, using his contacts to shape the events themselves.
At the beginning …