Friday, May 18, 2018

Nicknames: The Writer As Displaced Person

Ariel Dorfman: The Writer As Displaced Person
     from The Guardian

Pregnant With Prose: How pregnancy taught an author to say no to everything and write novels instead by forcing her to cut herself a break

Kaspersky Lab to move all Australian users' data from Russia to Switzerland

Alan Jones defends 'savage' commentary during Grantham floods defamation trial

Were Sydney's roads built on tracks created by Aboriginal people?

Many of Sydney's roads and side streets are based on the original tracks and pathways created by Aboriginal people before the First Fleet arrived in 1788, ...

MUNGO MacCALLUM. Nicknames

Treasurer Scott Morrison got very excited last week, bouncing and bubbling all over the place.  And it wasn’t just because of his pretty ordinary budget: building a stronger economy may be a worthy slogan, but it is hardly inspiring. What was really turning him on was that he (or someone talking to him) had invented a new nickname for Bill Shorten: Unbelieva-Bill.   Continue reading

A Book Lover's Novel of Insatiable Waiting
To start with, look at all the books.” So begins Jeffrey Eugenides’s THE MARRIAGE PLOT. You will immediately know if this book is for you based on your reaction to the first paragraph, in which Eugenides introduces us to main character Madeleine Hanna by listing the books residing on her shelf—from the “complete Modern Library set of Henry James,” to the New Directions paperbacks of poetry, to the “Colette novels she read on the sly.”

MICHAEL KEATING. 2018 Budget comment; Part 3: The Turnbull Government’s Priorities as revealed in the Budget


LINDA SIMON. TAFE upfront in Shorten’s Budget speech in reply.


The failure of corporate regulation and regulators is in plain sight for all to see. And it is not just in banking. Political ideology and corporate conceit has enabled the powerful to tilt the ‘market’ in their favour at the expense of the less privileged. The result is growing inequality and insecurity.
The Liberal Party branch offices,the BCA,News Corp and the Australian Financial Review also failed to uncover corporate failure and malfeasance on a grand scale.Was this deliberate or were they just asleep?
It is unlikely  that the regulars were wilful .. It is more likely that they just wanted to please the big end of town. 

JOHN MENADUE. How and why corporate regulators have failed us.

JIM COOMBS. APRA gone mad?


JOHN AUSTEN. Trouble in infrastructure paradise NSW revisited.

The mixed reception for the infrastructure works of NSW Premier the Hon. Gladys Berejiklian MP continues. It is mostly bad news punctuated by the odd piece of what the NSW Government considers good news. Continue reading


A sense of complacency, a lack of intellectual curiosity, a failure to think about the bigger picture, a pursuit of consensus lessening constructive criticism.  These are some of the findings in the Australian Prudential Regulatory Agency report into the Commonwealth Bank.  It concludes that “CBA’s continued financial success dulled the senses of the institution”.  Its management understood the financial risks, but not the non-financial risks, facing the company.
While we’re on the subject of finance the budget has attracted a wealth of commentary on Pearls and Irritations. John Falzon, Michael Keating, Giles Parkinson, Ranald MacDonald, Michael Pascoe, Ross Gittins, Ian McAuley and Mungo MacCallum have all contributed. Such is our obsession with fiscal figures that the 1000 pages of budget documentation are almost all about money. But what is money? On the ABC’s Minefield there is a rich discussion about money – what it is, what it isn’t, how it’s socially useful, and the danger of believing that money has value in itself.
Something as distant from the budget as possible –  Bach in Japan, Bach in Hermannsburg. On the ABC’s Spirit of Things Noel Debien is engaged in conversation with Masaaki Suziki, director of the Bach Collegium of Japan, and Morris and Barbara Stewart who have taken the Aboriginal women’s choir to Germany. Hear about Christianity in Japan, the Hermannsburger Missions Gesellschaft, and the adaptation of German liturgical music in different cultures. It ends with a promo for the film The Song Keepers.
Cambodian Government forces sale of last independent newspaper – Human Rights Watch
All eyes on India’s key Karnataka election – ucanews
Saturday Extra:
Trump’s only possible Iran Strategy is a fantasy – Washington Post
It’s a neoliberal budget when we no longer believe in neoliberalism.