Articles on Neoliberalism

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Tony Abbott made political capital out of the Home Insulation Program’s problems, but will he heed the lessons from the Royal Commission’s findings? AAP/Alan Porritt

Insulation royal commission exposes fatal market flaws

The most important finding in the final report of the Royal Commission into the Home Insulation Program is the one the Abbott government is least likely to heed. One of the two crucial flaws Commissioner…
Treasurer Joe Hockey wants to ‘end of the age of entitlement’, but which think-tanks around the world have played a part in developing that idea? AAP/Alan Porritt

Free-market think-tanks waged war on entitlement, conscripted an Australian Joe

We propose things which people regard as being on the edge of lunacy. The next thing you know they’re on the edge of policy. – Madsen Pirie, President of the Adam Smith Institute, 1987 In a speech in London…
The World Economic Forum is one meeting place where the hyper-elite, transnational capitalists can get together and become a class without a country. EPA/Jean-Christophe Bott

Class on a global scale: the emerging transnational capitalists

The Conversation is running a series, Class in Australia, to identify, illuminate and debate its many manifestations. Here, Andrew Self examines how class operates on a global scale, and whether or not…
Do teachers still see teaching as their “life calling”? Newton/Flickr

Pyne’s Review Panel: Will it help improve teacher quality?

“The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living from the dead.” While Aristotle’s axiom is purposefully exaggerated for dramatic effect, modern research confirms that there is indeed an…
Weighing up cost and benefit: proposed legal aid cuts are a perversion of justice. Lonpicman

Cuts to criminal legal aid will turn defendants into products

In an adversarial criminal justice system like the one we have in England and Wales, access to justice depends on access to lawyers. The court system is complicated and confusing, a heady mix of archaic…
The Accord tried to set the course for alternative economic policy, but despite the talk from Labor figures such as Kevin Rudd and Wayne Swan, this has not come to fruition with the current government. AAP/Lukas Coch

The lessons of the Accord for Modern Times: think outside the box

The Prices and Incomes Accord, that historic agreement between government and unions born 30 years ago, may have disappeared into history. But its most enduring and important lesson arises from its role…
Tony Abbott’s attack on Australia’s debt and taxation levels is sorely misguided. AAP/ Alan Porritt

Abbott’s budget bluster highlights a deficit of social responsibility

Today’s announcement by the government that it has a $12 billion “black hole” had the status of a confession. It needn’t have. All talk of “black holes”, “revenue shortfalls” and “structural deficits…
Margaret Thatcher was a female trailblazer, but never considered herself a feminist: and her example has failed to usher in another female PM or boost female MP numbers. EPA/Andy Rain

Margaret Thatcher was reformer and trailblazer - but not a feminist

The death of the first - and so far only - female British prime minister raises the question of how to judge her contribution to feminism and leadership. Given that only now we have our first female PM…
Instituting policies of ‘class warfare’ was a key criticism of late British PM Margaret Thatcher (right) as well as of her Chilean contemporary Augusto Pinochet, pictured here with his wife. EPA/Ian Jones

Thatcher, Pinochet and the legacy of class warfare

In Australia, Martin Ferguson has recently condemned the “class war rhetoric” of the Labor party, but on Monday morning (UK time) one of the world’s greatest class warriors passed away. Margaret Thatcher…
Christmas is a time of plenty - but to ensure we keep eating well in the future, it’s time to rethink the way we buy and produce food. Barbeque image from www.shutterstock.com

Eat, think, and be merry

As we gather to share a meal with friends and family this festive season, it is the ideal time to reflect on our relationship with food, including our dependence on those who grow it for us. Australians…
Trials of a working mother: Kirstie Marshall was at the centre of controversy after she breastfed her 11-day-old baby in state parliament in 2003. AAP

For women to have it all, we have to change the way we work

Who said we could have it all, anyway? This notion is a media myth that somehow translated the idea that women should not be excluded from any sphere on the basis of sex into the sexy but fallacious view…

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