Brexit

Over the weekend I was asked by the Election Watch team at the University of Melbourne to comment on the polling conducted for the Brexit referendum. The article that came out of this can be found somewhere on their blog, I'm sure. Here are the comments I provided in full (questions are bolded): 1. What do the …

Did Malcolm Fraser briefly shift the divisions of Australian politics?

Today we lost Malcolm Fraser, Australia's fourth longest serving prime minister (1975-83) and a man truly dedicated to public service. He may have also (briefly) changed the divisions of Australian politics in ways consistent with his later socially progressive activities. Much has been written about his time in office, as well as his contribution to public life since he …

Albrechtsen misses part of the story on the difficulties of reform

In a recent article in the Australian ($),*  columnist Janet Albrechtsen claims the primary reason the current federal government is having trouble getting it's economic reforms through Parliament is that people are not willing to make the needed sacrifices required to balance the budget and make government spending sustainable. Although I don't disagree with everything in her article, I …

Cracking down on welfare?

Why a 'takers versus makers' approach isn't entirely helpful. Last week, federal social services minister Kevin Andrews announced he would review commonwealth government welfare payments (see the Fairfax article here and the Daily Telegraph article here). The stated reason for the review is the belief that too many people rely on public benefits for income. The focus, it appears, …