Commentary

Commentary

21 Jul 2017

An Australian Tax Office (ATO) staffer recently leaked on LinkedIn a step-by-step guide to hacking a smartphone.

The documents, which have since been removed, indicate that the ATO has access to Universal Forensic Extraction software made by the Israeli company Cellebrite. This technology...

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20 Jul 2017

When Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced the establishment of a Home Affairs portfolio this week, he described it as “similar to the Home Office of the United Kingdom”. Drawing inspiration from this British model is worrisome for the immigration portfolio.

Planning immigration has...

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12 Jul 2017

Let’s be optimistic and say that it’s never too late to start restoring trust in politics and its practitioners. It is not as though we can return to some golden age of democracy, when voters considered politics an honourable and noble profession, because such an era never existed, at least not...

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11 Jul 2017

Neither of Australia’s two main political parties believes population is an issue worth discussion, and neither currently has a policy about it. The Greens think population is an issue, but can’t come at actually suggesting a target.

Even those who acknowledge that numbers are relevant...

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05 Jul 2017

In the broad picture, the 2016 census has confirmed things we already knew about ourselves. But burrow down into the detail, and you’ll find much that will surprise you.

The key themes are well-known. Australians are getting older: almost five million of us are now over sixty, and almost...

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04 Jul 2017

The Victorian government’s recently released housing strategy allows for the transfer of the state’s public housing stock to the community housing sector. In a recent Conversation article, Kate Shaw raises an important question – “Why should the state wriggle out of public housing?” – and...

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03 Jul 2017

Australia lacks an overarching population policy or strategy. Over the years, multiple inquiries have recommended such a policy. Population policies the world over typically focus on births and migration.

As part of post-war reconstruction, Australia adopted a 2% population growth target...

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29 Jun 2017

The idea that governments should provide financial assistance to news publishers is receiving more serious consideration in Australia than at any time in living memory. At the heart of the Senate inquiry into the Future of Public Interest Journalism, established in May in the wake of another...

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27 Jun 2017

The great Australia dream of owning your own home is still alive despite the various problems plaguing housing affordability, new Census data shows. Even though the overall home ownership trend remains strong, it’s masking other issues.

The latest 2016 Census data assesses what the...

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26 Jun 2017

Investing in regional cities’ economic performance makes good sense. Contrary to popular opinion, new research out today shows regional cities generate national economic growth and jobs at the same rate as big metropolitan cities. They are worthy of economic investment in their own right – not...

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23 Jun 2017

Early childhood education and care (ECEC) has experienced a surge of policy attention in recent years at the national and international level.

The debate has also shifted its focus, with policymakers realising that equitable access to quality ECEC can strengthen the foundations of...

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21 Jun 2017

Lobbying is a necessary component of representative democracy, yet poses one of its greatest threats.

Interest groups must be free to have a say. But the disproportionate influence of a few over many serves to seriously undermine democratic ideals, and comes at great cost to the taxpayer...

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21 Jun 2017

Federal Immigration Minister, Peter Dutton, is the government’s hard man. Taking over the mantle from Scott Morrison as the most prominent figure on the Liberal Party’s hard right, he is a polarising figure both among voters and within his own party.

In some ways, the former Queensland...

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19 Jun 2017

As part of a BroadAgenda series on gendered work and the pay gap, we asked Professor Sheridan for her take on the recently released Senate committee report: 'Gender segregation in the workplace and its impact on women's economic equality.' Sheridan has been researching women’s experiences in the...

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19 Jun 2017

We are living through a period of fragmentation and polarisation in public discourse on a scale mankind has not before experienced. By far the greatest fragmenting and polarising force is social media.

An increasing proportion of the population, especially those under 40, get their news...

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19 Jun 2017

A charred housing block in the north Kensington area of west London stands as a grotesque symbol of human tragedy and public shame. Just past midnight on 14 June, a blaze sparked in a kitchen on the fourth floor of Grenfell Tower swept upwards with alarming speed and ferocity. Residents above,...

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16 Jun 2017

Immigration minister Peter Dutton’s bill making it harder for migrants to become citizens made its controversial debut in parliament on Thursday this week. It quadruples the amount of time a migrant must live in Australia as a permanent resident before applying for citizenship. It significantly...

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13 Jun 2017

Domestic violence is not specific to a particular religious group; Australian statistics indicate that one in six women experience physical or sexual violence from a current or former partner in their lifetime.

Despite this, several recent media reports have sensationalised domestic...

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10 Jun 2017

Chief scientist, Alan Finkel, got a lot of people very excited when he released his draft report into Australia energy security last December, less than three months after the September blackout put conservatives into a flap over wind and solar.

We were in the midst of an unstoppable...

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08 Jun 2017

The main job of the Finkel Review, to be released this week, is to set out ways to reform the National Electricity Market (NEM) to ensure it delivers reliable and affordable power in the transition to low-carbon energy. Yet most of the attention has been focused on what type of carbon-reduction...

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