Articles sur Democracy Futures

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Voters might be quite rational in refusing to give the green light to those who wield power and benefit from the status quo. Mats Edenius/flickr

We frown on voters’ ambivalence about democracy, but they might just save it

Ambivalence among voters is reason to think about how democracy is working for us as a community. To keep democracy alive we need to be sceptical about the exercise of power and keep it in check.
The Netherlands is where nearly $1 billion from Australia was sunk into two companies liquidated three years later. Alex de Haas/flickr

Bottom of the canal: Pfizer’s billion-dollar tax ploy

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has engaged in a series of paper transactions to create a A$936 million loss in Australia – effectively a billion-dollar exercise in avoiding tax.
Children play in the DDT fog left by the ‘fog truck’ in a New Jersey neighbourhood. George Silk/LIFE 1948

On the origins of environmental bullshit

The undermining of environmental science, and the creation of lies and bribes to distort public policymaking, is as old as industries that know their products do harm, but lie to keep them in use.
New Zealand shows up Australia as badly in the field of pharmaceuticals as it does on the rugby field. Dave Hunt/AAP

New Zealand steamrolls Australia on the pharmaceutical paddock too

Drug prices in Australia are three times higher than in New Zealand. A key reason is the lack of transparency about taxpayer subsidies for Big Pharma and the companies' own finances.
Austin/WallpaperMade

Mexico: The Cactus Democracy

This research note on Mexican politics and society was inspired by a recent visit to Mexico City, Puebla and Oaxaca, as a guest of the country’s Instituto Nacional Electoral (INE). Visitors to Mexico are…
Despite global outrage at the cost of its Hepatitis C cure, Gilead reaps huge profits – aided by Australian taxpayer subsidies. Nick St Charles/flickr

Gilead and the billion-dollar odyssey

How much can a multinational take before its social licence to operate in this country expires? How much corporate welfare is too much?
Critics fear the merger of agricultural giants Bayer and Monsanto will drive an increase in use of pesticides. AgriLife Today/flickr

Growing food in the post-truth era

The global food system has been operating in post-truth mode for decades.
The Senate Inquiry into Corporate Tax Avoidance has helped expose just how much work remains to be done on the multinational tax front. Julian Smith/AAP

Rumours of the death of multinational tax avoidance are greatly exaggerated

The Australian government took out ads this month boasting of victory in the fight against multinational tax avoidance. It is no small irony that taxpayers forked out for this bald-faced lie.
NSW Business Chamber chief executive Stephen Cartwright (pictured right with Malcolm Turnbull) says the chamber is ‘fiercely non-political’. Dan Himbrechts/AAP

No flies on Australia’s richest union

The NSW Business Chamber insists that arguing against entitlements for low-paid workers and victims of domestic violence qualifies as a charitable exercise.
Wotif is one of a slew of formerly competitive rivals bought up by Expedia. Dan Peled/AAP

Tax take shrinks as online accommodation agents rake it in

Australian authorities have allowed predatory online travel agents to shrink their tax base while penalising Australian accommodation operators thanks to onerous commissions and vanishing competition
We cannot stand outside the fray, but instead must engage in the ‘post-truth’ debates about politics and knowledge. Richard Ricardi/Flickr

Trump demands a post-post-truth response

Pundits have been keen to link post-truth to post-modernists, post-positivists or any other 'postie'. They should turn their energy to forming a real popular front against Trump's faux populism.
Gautam Adani’s company is in line to get an extraordinary helping hand from Malcolm Turnbull’s government to develop the Carmichael coal mine. Mick Tsikas/AAP

Report: government won’t rule out underwriting Adani’s Carmichael coal mine

If the government were to provide loan insurance or loan guarantees, the banks might be more inclined to fund Adani. Taxpayers would then be at risk for the estimated $10 billion in project finance.
Does it make sense any more to talk about the weather – like record heatwaves in Sydney – as separate from the developing climate patterns we are seeing? Stilgherrian/flickr

The weather is now political

Thinking about climate change as a process of 'weathering' reminds us of the profound and highly unequal consequences for all living things.

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