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Articles Archive for December 2013

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[28 Dec 2013 | One Comment | 73 views ]

BY this time next year 20 world leaders, their economic decision-makers and several thousand officials, journalists and hangers-on should have passed through Australia. It will have cost the nation about $400 million to house, feed, and secure them at the G20 for three meetings in Sydney, Brisbane and Cairns.
Large sums indeed, but for Australia and the Abbott government it is an important opportunity to provide leadership on the world stage. For Tony Abbott it will be an excellent chance to help lead the global agenda and for his many critics …

Books, Featured »

[24 Dec 2013 | Comments Off on Pushed from the Wings | 6 views ]
Pushed from the Wings

Ross Fitzgerald’s novel “Pushed from the Wings is a riotously funny black comedy set in Queensland, Australia. His teetotal hypochondriac hero, Grafton Everest, is destined to become an Australian legend: an Antipodean early middle-age mix of Walter Mitty, Billy Liar and Sandy Stone. An anti-hero of outrageous proportion. “Pushed from the Wings is now an eBook.

Columns »

[21 Dec 2013 | One Comment | 152 views ]

IF the High Court sends West Australians back to the polls in the new year, we will see the formation of some very odd political alliances among the smaller parties as they wheel and deal for preferences. The recent WA Senate election certainly showed minor parties could win one and possibly two seats if they had the right preference deal in place.
In the past, minor parties and independents have been elected to the Senate via clever or lucky preference arrangements. The habit of Labor and the Coalition of preferencing religious …

Columns »

[14 Dec 2013 | 2 Comments | 468 views ]

BOTH the Liberal and Labor parties have reached out to our Asian neighbours at different times in different ways. However, the idea that it was Labor that first reached out to Asia misrepresents the historical facts.
The conservative side of politics has a track record of offering a hands-across-the-water approach to our geopolitical neighbourhood.
External affairs minister John Latham’s groundbreaking trip to Asia in 1934, for example, was a milestone, along with Percy Spender’s far-sighted Colombo Plan, and Robert Menzies’ coining of the term the Near North to replace the term the …

Columns »

[4 Dec 2013 | 5 Comments | 515 views ]

RESPECT for the independence of the judiciary has always been a central Liberal Party policy. Sadly, this no longer applies in Queensland.
The Newman government’s savage attacks on the judiciary have damaged Queensland’s national and international reputation. This matters mightily in today’s global economy, as it directly affects the state’s ability to attract investment, research money and economic growth.
It is not in Queensland’s business interests to look like an autocratic banana republic. In particular, the Newman government’s slanging match with nationally respected crime fighter Tony Fitzgerald is extremely damaging among most …