Category: John Howard

15 Jul

4 Comments

Brutal asylum policies & the Left’s ‘blame voters’ moralism

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An ‘election ploy’, but is it effective?

In New Matilda today I have a major piece rebutting the dominant Left explanation for Australia’s brutal asylum seeker policies: That such policies are “poll-driven” in that voter attitudes on the issue are enough to swing elections. It is mainly a response to two NM articles last week written by their main political writer, Ben […]

04 Dec

10 Comments

Abbott & the auto-unravelling of the Right

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Grown-up government

For some time, this blog has insisted that an Abbott government — far from getting a smooth ride, even with a big parliamentary majority — would most likely face “crisis and volatility” at least as much as the ALP had over the last few years. By way of contrast, the rapid accumulation of problems for Abbott in […]

22 Jul

7 Comments

Making things happen: race, borders & the state

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QLD_CM_NEWS_RUDD_19JUL13_

One of the most striking things about the mainstream media coverage of Kevin Rudd’s “PNG solution” is how the discussion is mostly framed by ideas, policies and language that are increasingly relics of a past phase of the interminable “border security” debate. By outmanoeuvring opponents to both his Right and Left on this issue, Rudd […]

20 Jul

29 Comments

Turning point: Asylum, Rudd’s realpolitik & the Left

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Because all aspiring boat people have the Fairfax newspapers home-delivered

Some moments have “turning point” written all over them. So it was when Liz and I started Left Flank three years and two weeks ago, when we highlighted a speech by Julia Gillard justifying her “lurch to the Right” on border security, and compared her language with that of John Howard — defending Hansonism — from 1996. […]

10 Apr

7 Comments

Thatcher, the ALP & the dregs of neoliberalism

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747387-thatcher-hawke

If there’s one thing the entire Australian Left agrees on right now it’s that “Thatcherism was a very bad thing”. But beyond that, it may be appropriate to ask what exactly it is that people think was a bad thing. The answer to that question rests on one’s interpretation of what exactly was going on […]

15 Feb

16 Comments

Truth, lies & narratives: What ALP’s crisis is not about

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Momentum

In a considered piece at ABC’s The Drum on Thursday, Jonathan Green highlighted a phenomenon that seems to overwhelm Australian politics — the inability of simple facts about the Gillard Government’s performance to overcome the stench of crisis hanging over it. He is correct to point out “that in assuming that the mere facts of its […]

26 Jul

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Australia’s Islamophobes & right-wing ideologues praised in Breivik’s manifesto

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Keith Windschuttle UPDATE 26/7/11: It is apparent that Breivik was pretty committed to lifting material straight out of other far Right tracts. His praise for Howard and Pell appears to to have originated here and the Windschuttle comments here. Thanks to David Brophy for pointing out the former reference. As with all the links to far Right sites […]

16 Jan

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The curious marriage of neoliberalism and nationalism

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One of the main arguments of the neoliberal era has been centred on the decline of nation states and governments as actors in the economic sphere, replaced by decentralised market networks, multinational corporations and a new class of transnational capitalists. In her article in the Atlantic Monthly that I quoted in my last post, “The Rise of […]