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New Politics: Australian Politics

  • The failure of NACC and the return of the climate wars

    14 JUN 2024 · In this episode of New Politics, we explore the troubling decision by the National Anti-Corruption Commission to not pursue investigations against six public officials previously involved with the Coalition government’s Robodebt scheme. Despite significant public and political expectations spurred by the scathing findings of the Robodebt Royal Commission, the NACC’s decision is a severe disappointment, a failure at its first major test. We look at the ramifications of this decision, which has not only disillusioned many affected by the Robodebt scheme—a policy that has been linked to immense financial and personal distress—but also raised questions about the effectiveness and independence of the NACC. With over $1.8 billion lost and profound societal impacts, including over 2,000 suicides, the decision to forego investigation into a scheme deemed neither fair nor legal by many scholars and legal analysts has sparked significant public outcry. Further complicating the political landscape are the revived “climate wars,” with Liberal Party leader Peter Dutton’s controversial statements on withdrawing from the Paris agreement and refusing to set new emissions targets unless elected. We unpack the potential political and environmental consequences of such positions, especially in light of the significant electoral shifts in traditionally conservative areas, which now demand greater action on climate change. How will the Liberal Party gain the seats it needs to win at the next election if it just antagonises the electorate? Also, we touch on the ongoing tensions surrounding the King’s Birthday honours and the recent media uproar involving former Liberal Treasurer Peter Costello at Nine Media, alongside global issues such as the continuing dire situation in Gaza. With escalating violence and international diplomatic efforts to broker peace, we examine the broader implications of these conflicts on global politics and humanitarian efforts. Join us as we explore these pressing issues, and uncover the layers of complexity in these governance challenges and the ongoing struggle for integrity and accountability in Australian politics.
    56m 40s
  • The Frydenberg failure, Shorten’s expensive speechwriting and what’s behind Nature Positive?

    7 JUN 2024 · In this episode of New Politics, we explore the reasons behind the significant stir within the conservative mainstream media sparked by rumours of former Liberal Party MP Josh Frydenberg’s potential return to federal politics. Once a key figure as the Treasurer and the representative for Kooyong, Frydenberg’s speculated comeback ignited considerable enthusiasm at News Corporation, almost as though Robert Menzies himself was making the return. However, Josh Frydenberg is no Robert Menzies: his actual influence and the community’s reception starkly contrast with the portrayals on Sky News, which, fortunately, do not represent the views of the electorate. We examine Frydenberg’s decision not to re-enter the political fray despite persistent media encouragement, particularly from outlets such as the ABC and Sky News. There are reasons why Frydenberg lost his seat to independent Monique Ryan in the 2022 election: he is not as effective as the media would have us believe. This episode also highlights broader challenges facing the Liberal Party, marked by internal conflicts and leadership challenges in preparation for the post-Peter Dutton era. The upheavals within the Victoria branch of the Liberal Party, infiltrated by religious zealots, highlights its struggle to re-establish itself, especially in upcoming contests such as the one in Kooyong against Monique Ryan, who appears well-established in the seat. Also, we cast a spotlight on the significant, yet often overshadowed, role of speechwriters in political communication and debate the controversy around the hefty remuneration—$300,000!—for the speechwriter of Minister Bill Shorten. We debate the value of such investments in the context of political efficacy and public perception. We critique the Labor government’s approach to environmental policy, particularly the newly introduced Nature Positive Bill, questioning its effectiveness and alignment with prior promises and the expectations of progressive constituents. “Nature positive”—is this just spin and political marketing, or is there something substantial behind it? And is it enough for the Labor government to be slightly better than the Coalition, which was in office from 2013 to 2022 and was arguably one of the worst governments in Australian history? No, it is not: they need to perform much better and be held accountable when they fail to deliver on the key issues they promised from the opposition.
    39m 36s
  • Labor’s crafty offer for a second term and News Corp in a Tingle

    31 MAY 2024 · In this week’s episode of New Politics, we explore the recent parliamentary session where the Prime Minister informed the Labor Caucus that they are “crafting the offer for a second term.” This statement has been widely interpreted as a preparatory move for an election, though this is unlikely before the Queensland state election in October. Redistribution issues further complicate the timing, but we think the possible election dates are either November or April 2025. Amidst this electoral anticipation, pressing issues from the current term still demand resolution. Economic management remains a concern, and other ongoing issues include housing, the “future made in Australia” program, domestic violence, and energy pricing. These are long-term challenges that require continuous management rather than immediate solutions. Immigration continued to be as a contentious issue for the government, particularly concerning the deportation of non-citizens who have committed crimes – Peter Dutton is expected to capitalise on this topic – as conservatives usually do – a natural territory for him, leading up to the next election. For the Labor government, some supporters on the left believe that a second term will allow for the implementation of more radical social policies. However, there is no clear evidence of what Labor intends to pursue in a potential second term. Historically, second terms of Labor governments have varied in productivity and political stability, as seen in comparisons between the Hawke, Whitlam, and Gillard governments. Speculations about a second term under Prime Minister Albanese suggest it might mirror the first term in its cautious and steady approach. Racism has re-entered the national debate following comments by ABC journalist Laura Tingle at the Sydney Writers Festival. Her remarks about Australia’s racist tendencies sparked outrage from News Corporation, demanding her reprimand, as well as their usual calls to defund the ABC. We examine the broader context of racism in Australia, from historical policies to contemporary issues, and the media’s role in perpetuating or challenging these narratives. The ABC fails to protect its journalists from external attacks – Stan Grant, Yasmin Abdel-Magied, and Antoinette Latouf are prime examples of this – but Laura Tingle, as a senior journalist and ABC board member, represents a tougher challenge for removal. Will she stay, or will she go? The media’s influence on politics is another focal point, with Sky News and News Corporation acting as political activists for the Liberal Party. The Prime Minister Albanese’s more detailed recognition of media issues in the Democracy Sausage podcast highlights this point, though his reluctance to act remains puzzling. Finally, we cover the Australian Greens’ motion to debate the recognition of the state of Palestine, which was swiftly defeated. We also address the duplicity of political statements on Palestine and the broader implications for Australian foreign policy. The reluctance to take a stand on Palestine is linked to fear of backlash from pro-Israel lobby groups, a dynamic mirrored in UK and US politics.
    51m 5s
  • The battle over nuclear and immigration, free Assange now and the ICC case against Israel

    24 MAY 2024 · Welcome to this week’s episode of New Politics, where we analyse the latest events in Australian politics, global diplomacy, and the intersection of law and human rights. We dissect the aftermath of the federal budget and the opposition’s budget reply amidst ongoing political machinations, including the contentious topics dominating the political landscape, including immigration policies, the debate over nuclear versus renewable energy, and the broader implications of these discussions on the next federal election which is now not too far away. We assess the strategic positioning of the opposition’s controversial stance on reducing immigration and promoting nuclear energy – despite expert evidence pointing to the high costs and long timelines associated with nuclear power, as highlighted by recent CSIRO reports, the Liberal and National parties are still pushing ahead with nuclear energy, despite the feasibility and sincerity of these policies. And despite fluctuations in opinion polls, the Labor government still remains favoured to win the next election, especially when consideration perceptions of government performance over the past 11 years. In a major international segment, we discuss the recent developments concerning Julian Assange’s legal battles, including his right to appeal extradition to the United States, the complexities of international law, the potential implications of his case, and broader human rights concerns. Assange should not be in jail and the charges should be dropped and we question whether the government has done enough to secure his release. We also look at the federal government’s considerations to restrict social media usage among individuals under 16, reflecting on the potential impacts and challenges of such a policy. While it’s without question that social media has an impact on young people – all people, in fact – it’s not clear whether the government’s proposals will actually make a difference. There are significant developments in international relations in the Middle East, notably the International Criminal Court’s recent actions against Israeli and Palestinian leaders, and the recognition of Palestine by several European nations. We provide a comprehensive analysis of these events, their implications on global diplomacy, and the varying responses from political leaders, and what this means for politics in Australia.
    51m 5s
  • The big 2024 Budget analysis, gaslighting gas and a whistleblower goes to jail

    17 MAY 2024 · In this episode of New Politics, we provide an alternative assessment of the 2024 Budget, exploring its reception across various media outlets, economic assessments, and the underlying political machinations. Of course, most of the reactions from major players in the media landscape, including News Corporation, Nine/Fairfax, the ABC and the Guardian, are mostly negative and it’s their inherent biases that shape public perception. We also look at the underlying priorities revealed in the Budget, such as the $11 billion in fossil fuel subsidies juxtaposed against the $6.5 billion allocated for social housing and homelessness, and the relatively minimal support for the arts and creative industries. What is the significance of the Budget in the context of the next federal election and how does it set the stage for the campaign? Will there even be another Budget before the next election? It’s unlikely: this smells like, tastes like and looks like a pre-election Budget, we don’t think there’ll be another one in this parliamentary term. We also turn our attention to the federal government’s new Future Gas Strategy, which looks very similar to Scott Morrison’s much-derided 2020 gas-led recovery plan – we discuss the environmental and economic ramifications of expanding gas production until 2050 and ask the question: how does pumping more greenhouse emissions into the atmosphere actually decrease greenhouse emissions, as claimed by the minister for resources? It doesn’t – but a bit of gaslighting of the electorate will always reduce the political problem. We then cover the sentencing of whistleblower David McBride, who exposed war crimes committed by Australian Special Forces in Afghanistan. This case raises significant questions about whistleblower protections and the government’s commitment to transparency and accountability. Why is McBride in jail, when the people who committed the war crimes are still free? And Senator Fatima Payman displays more courage in her little left finger than the entire government and she will probably pay a large price for this courage. That’s Australian politics: courage is always punished, cowardice is always rewarded. Song listing: - ‘Confessions Of A Window Cleaner’, Ed Kuepper. - Blue Sky Mine’, Midnight Oil. - ‘Everybody Knows’, Sigrid (cover version). - ‘Praise You’, Fat Boy Slim.
    54m 22s
  • The voices of the Palestine protests and the continuing pre-Budget speculation

    10 MAY 2024 · In this in-depth episode of New Politics, we take a closer look at a series of significant events impacting global politics, human rights, and national economic policies. We begin by examining the escalating student-led pro-Palestine protests that have ignited across major university campuses worldwide, starting from Columbia University and spreading across the U.S. and Australia. These protests, fueled by the harsh realities of the conflict in Gaza, demand a reassessment of university investments with Israel and shine a light on the broader geopolitical implications involving major world powers. We also discuss the upcoming United Nations vote on whether to recognise Palestine as a full member state—a topic of intense international diplomacy and contention. We dissect the complexities behind the U.S. and other major powers’ positions on this issue, exploring how past actions and present debates at the U.N. reflect on the broader challenges of achieving a two-state solution in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. Could the events in East Timor from 1999 offer any guidance? On the domestic front, we look into the federal government’s pre-Budget announcements, highlighting the proposed changes to the HECS debt system and other fiscal policies including tax cuts, cost-of-living adjustments, and support mechanisms like the Future Made In Australia program. We question the effectiveness and timing of these announcements, considering the broader context of national economic strategy and upcoming electoral considerations. Finally, we revisit the debate on manufacturing in Australia, focusing on the end of car manufacturing by the Coalition in 2013—despite their denials that they weren’t responsible for this—and its long-term impacts on communities. We analyse political narratives and accountability, examining the current government’s efforts to revitalise the sector, against the backdrop of past policy decisions that have shaped the economic landscape.
    42m 47s
  • Why is ending domestic violence so difficult? It’s a question men still can’t answer…

    3 MAY 2024 · In this episode of New Politics, we explore the eternal issue of domestic violence in Australia, exploring the recent headlines and government actions – or lack thereof – that have fueled both media coverage and public discourse. We begin with the No More rally in Canberra, where domestic violence against women and children took centre stage, highlighting the slow governmental response despite numerous reports and increasing public pressure. It’s a critical issue that affects over half of the population and it’s a disaster that the political system doesn’t seem to want to implement the solutions, even though they’ve been available for years. We also look at the political dynamics at play, particularly focusing on Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s involvement at the No More rally – should he have been there? Or not been there? Albanese didn’t seem to read the room very well – or the crowd – and the substantial political fallout could have been avoided if he avoided the centre stage. But he would have been criticised anyway, so what should a Prime Minister? As always, the answer is: “just do the right thing”. Implementing the best policies to reduce domestic violence would have avoided the need for a rally in the first place. Despite the announcement of $925 million to aid victims and new bans intended to protect against digital abuses, we question the effectiveness of funding without societal and cultural changes to address the root causes of domestic violence. We then look at the role of the media in shaping public perception and the political narrative and scrutinise how various media outlets negatively reported on the rally and the government’s actions, examining the impact of sensationalism and political bias on the actual issues at hand. We also look at mental health, as highlighted by former Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s public discussion of his struggles while he was in office and a broader debate on the adequacy of government action and funding for mental health services. Should we feel any sympathy for Morrison’s revelations? His actions in office included attacking asylum seekers, the disastrous Robodebt scheme, cutbacks to mental health services, especially for young adults. Maybe not. Join us as we navigate these political and social issues, seeking clarity on what has been done, what could be done better, and the ongoing impact of political and media narratives on real-world problems.
    45m 37s
  • Australia’s economic resurgence, a war on Twitter/X and the hexed HECS educational challenge

    26 APR 2024 · In this episode of New Politics, we explore Australia’s remarkable economic ascent, now ranking second among G20 nations, a significant leap from its previous positions. We explore the factors behind this growth and the impact of government policies on this turnaround and while this might be good for the economy, it’s not so good for the community if people can’t see or feel the benefits yet. For the government, this is an important factor: the economy doesn’t vote but the people in the economy do. We also discuss the Future Made in Australia initiative announced by the Prime Minister, focusing on renewable energy projects and advanced manufacturing, aiming to boost local job creation. Despite the lack of detailed plans, the initiative has garnered substantial community and industry support, although it faces criticism from conservative figures and media. No surprises there. There’s a controversial debate around free speech and whether Twitter (‘X’ or whatever people wish to call it) should remove a video of a violent stabbing incident in Sydney’s west and the subsequent social media uproar involving global platforms and Australian government responses. It’s a vexed issue: perhaps there should be restrictions on this kind of violence on social media but if is restricted, does that mean we would never find out what’s really happening in Gaza and Ukraine? It might be a case of being careful for what you wish for.  Lastly, we look at the pressing issues in education, from potential relief for graduates burdened by HECS debts to the contentious funding of private schools, which highlights a significant disparity in government support compared to public schools. Join us as we unpack these complex topics, providing insights into Australia’s current economic strategies, the media, and educational policies. Song listing: - ‘The King Is Dead’, The Herd. - ‘Freedom!’, George Michael (Marc Martel cover). - ‘Field Of Glass’, The Triffids. - ‘La Femme d’Argent’, Air. - ‘Praise You’, Fat Boy Slim.
    45m 44s
  • A tragedy in the east, and unpacking a week of global tensions and domestic drama

    19 APR 2024 · In a deeply impactful week, the latest episode of New Politics discusses the broad range of events that have not only shaken local communities but also stirred international relations. We begin with the tragic attack at Westfield shopping mall in Bondi Junction, Sydney, where six lives were abruptly ended. This horrific incident prompts a wider discussion on public safety and the effectiveness of weapon control legislation in New South Wales. We also analyse the high-profile defamation case involving Bruce Lehrmann – he was found to be comprehensive liar, lost the case and was ultimately found to have sexually assaulted Brittany Higgins. The court’s findings and the implications of Lehrmann’s actions illuminate issues of media integrity and the complexities of public perception in high-stakes legal battles. On the international stage, we look at the escalating conflict between Israel and Gaza, examining the motives behind Israel’s controversial military actions and the broader geopolitical chessboard involving Iran, Hezbollah, and the international community’s stance on Palestinian statehood. We explore the volatile dynamics of Middle Eastern politics and what it means for the global balance of power. We also cover the recent byelection in the seat of Cook, analysing the political strategies at play and the implications for future elections and for the Liberal Party. We also question the Australian government’s fiscal priorities, juxtaposing a massive increase in defence spending of $50 billion against the backdrop of rising homelessness and mental health issues. There’s never enough money for the things that really matter. Join us for a comprehensive exploration of these critical issues, where we connect dots across continents and communities, offering insights into the effects of policy decisions, social justice, and international diplomacy.  Song listing: - “The Numbers”, Radiohead.  - “I Fought The Law”, (cover version) The Clash. - “Dayvan Cowboy”, The Boards of Canada. -  “Unknown Water”, Ella Fence. - “Praise You”, Fat Boy Slim.
    47m 2s
  • Lost in the supermarkets, housing crisis, the IPA and facts, a war against the Governor–General

    12 APR 2024 · In this new episode of New Politics, we explore the pressing concerns impacting Australians today. Starting with the grocery and supermarkets sector, we analyse the interim report from the Food and Grocery Code Review which highlights the significant power imbalance favouring major supermarkets like Coles, Woolworths, and Aldi. We discuss the implications of their unchecked practices on small suppliers and the urgent need for stricter enforcement of the Grocery Code.  We also shed light on Australia’s housing crisis, focusing on the alarming rate of unoccupied housing and the contentious debate over using superannuation for home purchases. Governments have a habit of exacerbating these kinds of issues: first home owner grants were politically popular but made the problem worse, and restrictive policies on local zoning block the supply of new dwellings. We explore the potential repercussions of these policies on the housing market and the broader economy. The Institute of Public Affairs is an insidious organisation that is the conduit between the Murdoch empire and the Liberal Party and it has inflicted much damage on the social fabric of Australian society—it’s now running a campaign against fact-checking organisations for what it claims is “left-wing bias” and we look at the broader implications for disinformation and political bias in media. The IPA is all for free speech, but only when that freedom is favourable to its political agenda: for everyone else; it’s sit down, shut up and do as you’re told. The true hallmark of modern conservative politics: just keep lying; the public will eventually believe it. And finally, we address the new culture war and political uproar surrounding the appointment of Sam Mostyn as the new Governor–General, examining the reactions from News Corporation and other conservative political figures.
    50m 5s

The best analysis and discussion about Australian politics and #auspol news. Presented by Eddy Jokovich and David Lewis, we look at all the issues the mainstream media wants to cover...

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The best analysis and discussion about Australian politics and #auspol news. Presented by Eddy Jokovich and David Lewis, we look at all the issues the mainstream media wants to cover up, and do the job most journalists avoid: holding power to account. Seriously.
/ Twitter @NewpoliticsAU
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