Category: Julia Gillard

18 Jun

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Behind ALP crisis, elephant in room is Abbott’s weakness


More the outsider than ever

Continuing my analysis of the Right of Australian politics, my first op-ed for The Guardian’s new Australian website is up today, and can be found here. The lack of enthusiasm for the conservatives was borne out in a remarkable poll of 24 marginal seats in March. It found a two-party preferred voting intention of 59.4% for the Coalition, […]

01 May


The ALP & the politics of anti-immigration (both kinds)



Cross-posted from Larvatus Prodeo. Thanks to Mark Bahnisch for convincing me to return to this subject. I have to confess that I couldn’t bring myself to watch Monday’s Four Corners on the scandal of Australia’s “offshore” asylum seeker processing regime. I’m on the Sydney Refugee Action Coalition email list and read horrifying stories from Manus […]

10 Apr


Thatcher, the ALP & the dregs of neoliberalism



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 […]

23 Feb


After the divorce: Contradictions of Greens strategy


Choices, choices...

With a sense of crisis swirling around the government, last Friday’s post on how the ALP’s problems run much deeper than a faulty “narrative” was republished at ABC’s The Drum. Then Christine Milne announced the end of the Greens-ALP agreement, and The Drum commissioned the piece below on the Greens. Now that comments are closed at the ABC website, we’re […]

15 Feb


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



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 […]

30 Dec

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2012 in review: The year that politics disoriented the Left


Immigrants protest against Greece's neo-Nazi Golden Dawn

Just before 2012 closes out, I’m reposting my last Overland blog of the year, which originally appeared here. In some ways it is a summing up of themes we have developed at Left Flank since we started in mid-2010; chiefly in our attempts to present not just a general ideological or theoretical approach to the […]

19 Nov


Gaza: How did taking the side of the oppressed get so hard?



The Australian Greens are deeply worried about the civilian death toll in Israel and Palestine, and urge both sides of the conflict to put down their weapons and respect a ceasefire. “The human suffering is too great and the continued recourse to violence has done nothing for peace,” Australian Greens Leader, Senator Christine Milne, said. […]

26 Mar


Zombie social democracy, or the ALP as Australia’s political ‘Walking Dead’



When watching the last few episodes of US cable TV series The Walking Dead, it struck me that the title has a double meaning, that Sheriff Rick and the other survivors of the zombie apocalypse are also among the dead who roam the planet’s surface. They’re still animated to do all the usual human things […]

13 Mar

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Is the ALP’s condition terminal? A crisis of social democracy



  My latest piece for ABC’s The Drum was published yesterday. Here is the original text for your reading pleasure. Comments most welcome, and I will try to respond. A flurry of excitement gripped federal politics in the last fortnight — from Kevin Rudd’s failed challenge for the Labor leadership to the parachuting of Bob Carr into […]