Review of ‘The Cunning Man’
By Peter Stanley
Bobby Graham Publishers, 338pp, $29.95
HAVING enjoyed historian Peter Stanley’s many works of nonfiction, one turns to this historical novel with enthusiasm but also a degree of trepidation.
There’s little doubt Stanley is one of Australia’s leading military historians. ‘The Cunning Man’ was born of research for another project. It is squarely based on his detailed and painstaking doctoral research into the lives of European soldiers in early Victorian India. In 1998, Stanley’s PhD about the subject was published in a widely acclaimed book, ‘White Mutiny: …
IF the old saying of “follow the money” is any indication, this year will be a roller coaster for the medical marijuana movement.
Late last month, an Initial Public Offering for a company touted as “Australia’s first medical marijuana stock” was wildly oversubscribed and the issue price of 20c a share looked like a bargain as within days the stock headed towards $1.
Despite the prospectus going to considerable lengths to explain the highly speculative nature of the venture, there was little restraint. After opening at 20c, the stock soon reached 92c …
IN some ways it is not surprising that the new Opposition Leader in NSW, Luke Foley (who admits to twice having been found guilty of drink driving), has leapt on to the bandwagon by declaring “a war on ice” as one of his key policies for the state election on March 28.
Ice is indeed a nasty drug that lately has been catching the headlines, but it is important to understand that the drug causing most harm is alcohol.
This is why the trial legislation introduced in NSW in January last year …
Review of ‘Mateship: A Very Australian History’
By Nick Dyrenfurth
Scribe, 256pp, $29.99
NICK Dyrenfurth’s Mateship is the first significant exploration of what the author terms “our secular egalitarian creed” since Russel Ward’s path-breaking 1958 work ‘The Australian Legend.’
Many of the themes in Dyrenfurth’s well-produced book (though it unfortunately lacks an index) had been explored previously with fellow scholars at the Australian Society for the Study of Labour History. Moreover, as Dyrenfurth acknowledges, the early stages of this often provocative and insightful book benefited from his three-year postdoctoral fellowship, hosted by …
Review of ‘Paul Hasluck: A Life’
By Geoffrey Bolton
UWA Publishing, 492pp, $49.99
FOR 20 years, from 1949, when he won the newly created Perth-based seat of Curtin, Fremantle-born Paul Hasluck was one of Australia’s most prominent conservative federal politicians. Born into a Salvation Army family, Hasluck played a leading role in Aboriginal affairs and indigenous reform and also in helping prepare Papua New Guinea for independence.
After Liberal prime minister Robert Menzies in 1951 appointed him minister for territories, a position he held for 12 years, Hasluck (1905–93) was minister for external affairs …
IN the one-house 89-seat Queensland Parliament, Premier Campbell Newman’s Liberal-National Party holds 73 seats and the ALP a mere nine. This was after Labor won two by-elections to add to the abysmal seven seats it gained at the last state election in 2012.
Hence, despite considerable voter dissatisfaction with the conservative state government and with the federal Coalition, don’t be surprised if the LNP wins today’s Queensland election with more than a few seats to spare.
But even though he may have clawed back some ground, it is possible the autocratic Newman …
SHORTLY before the Victorian election in November, I predicted in this newspaper that the Australian Sex Party’s Fiona Patten would be elected to the Legislative Council. I said this would follow a fierce struggle with the religious party, Family First, in the Northern Metropolitan region.
It happened. Not only did the Sex Party win a seat in Northern Metro but it missed out on winning a second one in South East Metro by a mere 230 votes. With 50 per cent of the vote counted, Family First and the Sex Party …
Located 849 km west of Rockhampton, nearly 1400 km north west Brisbane and 186 m above sea level, Winton is the centre of an important cattle and sheep raising region (although the annual rainfall of 410 mm makes it prone to drought) and, since early settlement, has been a vital transportation point.
Winton, originally known as Pelican Waterhole, owes its existence to the abortive Burke and Wills expedition and the subsequent expeditions which scoured central Queensland looking for the missing explorers. During the early 1860s a number of explorers including Frederick …
When Premier Campbell Newman announced a January 31 election only Queenslanders were surprised.
Few probably knew Newman had up until June to call the election but they certainly did know he had a lot of gall interrupting the cricket and the rest of summer with his campaign.
It was another reason for him to be disliked. Newman won a landslide victory in 2012 but his popularity and that of his Liberal National Party government is badly spoiled.
Labor and some of the commentariat are hyping Queensland election as a one-term government and a …