"I contributed to the wedding of physics and chemistry".

John B. Goodenough

Latest Papers

The working papers collection comprises historical papers as well as current ideas and works in progress on some of the major issues and topics of our times.

The Conspiracy Against Abbott (released 29 September 2010)
Tony Abbott cannot take a trick. In the 2010 Australian national election the Liberal-National Party effectively won one more seat than the Labor Party. It also slayed Labor on the first preference vote. 44 per cent of the electorate gave their first preference vote to the Coalition compared to only 38 per cent for Labor. It also won a 2.5 per cent swing to it on the two party preferred vote against a swing of about as much against Labor. But despite all this Abbott could not convince the Country Independents, who you would think would naturally side with him, to form government. Gillard and her Labor advisors have totally outclassed Abbott since election day. They have carefully stitched up deal after deal with the Greens, the independent Andrew Wilkie and the Country independents to attain government. To add insult to injury, on the first sitting day of the new parliament, Labor’s Daryl Melham and others secured the numbers for the Liberal Peter Slipper to become Deputy Speaker ahead of Abbott’s preferred candidate, Bruce Scott. What is going on? There are five major reasons why Abbott has lost out so badly to Gillard since election day: old political thinking within the coalition, the national green labor political majority, the ideological consensus in Canberra, Abbott’s personality and the slow turn of the media towards Gillard.
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The government of strange bedfellows and the end of politics as we know it (released 10 September 2010)
Rob Oakeshot seemed a tad indulgent as he kept the nation waiting to hear which of the major parties he would support with his single house of representatives vote. More people switched on their television sets to watch who would form government for the next three years than at any time I can remember. Many would have found Oakeshot to be a tiresome pain in the arse. Nevertheless get used to independents and minority parties holding the balance of power in Commonwealth and State elections because that, in the long term, and with some possible twists along the way, is where Australia is headed.
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The Independents and Aboriginal Australians: Some Optimistic First Thoughts (released 24 August 2010)
Above all the independents will understand that Aboriginal affairs can not be run by super administrators overseeing a series of super departments in Canberra. They will understand there has to be more white and black skin on the table at local levels and that it has to matter to local communities whether public and private investments fail or succeed. They will understand that the Federal government has to stop underwriting Qantas shares by facilitating hundreds of fly in and fly out experts and start to invest in the development of local Aboriginal expertise in remote and regional communities. They will understand that COAG level “closing the gap” performance indicators cannot be an end in themselves. They will also understand that giant corporations in Australia must move beyond their public relations, symbolic campaigns and put some skin on the table in local Aboriginal communities.T
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The woman who could not wait (released 20 August 2010)
In later life Julie Gillard will think back on 2010 with consternation. Whether she wins or loses the election tomorrow, she will wonder about whether it would have been better to wait for the opportunity to become Leader of the Labor Party and Prime Minister of Australia. Gillard was bred to be ruthless, in deposing Rudd she followed sage Labor advice. But later, and even now, having endured question after question about the fate of Kevin Rudd, her conscience will have been pricked and, most of all, she will wonder whether she was a pawn for others.The
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I fear for my country (released 20 July 2010)
There are no drug dealers at my door step. Doormen, salesmen and officials do not expect bribes. I do not hear my neighbours fighting through thin walls. I have clean water to drink and fresh air to breathe. I do not see people being shot in the streets. The only guns in my neighbourhood are used to cull foxes and other foreign vermin. The military is not overtaking the governments and the courts. Large masses of our population are not illiterate. I have access to the best health care in the world. All citizens are paid a minimum sum if they lose their jobs and do not have access to paid work. I live in an environment in which it is still possible to feel the wild quality of nature. There are traffic jams, ugliness and urban congestion and all the resulting problems, but we are as yet better off than other world city dwellers. I do not suffer from many of the afflictions that beset many parts of the world. Yet I fear for my country.
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Sweet Irene Kahn (released 9 July 2010)
When the past Secretary General of Amnesty International, Irene Kahn, speaks she has an incredibly sweet, fluent, pleasant voice. But her sweet words come with a dynamic message. In her interview with Margaret Throsby yesterday she raised several profound questions for Australia. All in the most polite, round about and beautiful way.
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The Death of a Soldier (released 8 July 2010)
John Faulkner was the Labor man who, all in the party, and all in the parliament, respected.
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The Power is Out in Sydney.. (released 7 July 2010)
If you want to understand where Julia Gillard’s most strident critics are, come to Sydney. A word of advice to Tony Abbott disappear...
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Empty Rightousness – the Real Problem of Modern Labor (released 5 July 2010)
The press pack have passed judgement on Kevin. The bureaucrats so abused by the tyrant Rudd have let their views be known. It was inevitable that Julia Gillard would take over it seems. After all every Prime Minister, apart from Rudd, had been 'normal'. Kevin though, well he was off with the pixies, a one man dictator who’s only friends were God and a cat. By now you will have read the accumulated articles and even seen the circulating videos of Hitler in the bunker transposed with Ruddisms. Pardon me to take a different view. The problem was never Kevin. The problem is the modern Labor Party with its empty heart and gut.
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UFOs and Julia Gillard (released 24 June 2010)
The Federal parliamentary caucus of the ALP are under the spell of a UFO.
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