Medibank lessons for Obama?

Health care reform debate not going well for the Democrats currently. But perhaps  Bill Clinton is correct: The president needs your help and the party needs your help…If you go out there and then you fail, then the victors get to re-write history…I don’t care how low they drive support for this with misinformation. The […]

Rudd’s ‘nation-building’ and Aboriginal affairs

Writing lecture on nationalism for Modern Political Ideologies I was considering the relation between social democratic parties and the project of liberal nationalism. It is arguable that confronting a perceived Islamic fundamentalist challenge to liberal norms social democrats have moved towards a more unitary concept of national identity. An example would be Gordon Brown’s interest […]

Sexual equality and freedom of religion

Much conservative anxiety about the proposals of the Victorian Labor Attorney-General Rob Hulls  to extend the coverage of anti-discrimination to include the ‘non-core’ activities of religious organisations such as health and Education providers. Noteworthy that religious conservatives champion a radical ‘multiculturalism’ here, although most of them are opposed to Australian multiculturalism in its customary ethnic […]

Jon Corzine & David Bartlett

The recent woes of the NSW Labor government and the opinion poll slippage of other Labor governments, such as David Bartlett in Tasmania,  have posed the question of whether Labor’s ascendant position in Australian politics is under threat. America conservatives take heart from Obama’s declining support and the woes of Democratic governors such as Jon […]

Big ‘L’ Liberal feminism not dead

Is anti-feminism a core belief of the Australian right? It is true that among conservative cultural warriors anti-feminism is a strong theme. Research I have undertaken whilst writing a lecture on feminism for Modern Political Ideologies calls this into some doubt.

Primaries or collective self-governance

Primaries are back in the news in Australia following  media reports of their use by the British conservatives to endorse a candidate. Primaries seem to attract sympathy from the left judging by Larvatus Pradeo. I doubt however that the current uninspiring quality of Labor MPs would be much improved by primaries, although some of the […]

Alison Anderson and the Maori Party

  Thought I had demonstrated initiative when last year I added a discussion of the Northern Territory government to my lecture on Indigenous Self-Determination in Australian Identities: Indigenous & Multicultural. Considered it more politically interesting than ATSIC which preoccupied the Unit materials perhaps because it fits the general academic preoccupation with the Howard government. Since […]

Ghosts of John Elliott and Katherine West

Malcolm Turnbull’s basic problem is that like John Howard Mark I he is out of step with his own party. Howard won the Liberal leadership in 1985 due to missteps by Andrew Peacock rather than any strong base of support. Turnbull, once Peter Costello was gone, was the only credible candidate once Brendan Nelson fell […]