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Analysis and Comment (16)

The draft report of the Competition Policy Review elevates consumer choice above all other considerations. The draft report of the Competition Policy Review elevates consumer choice above all other considerations. www.shutterstock.com

Harper review would reduce us from citizens to mere consumers

Are we consumers or are we citizens? Clearly most of us are both. In a capitalist economy people get much of what they need through competitive markets. Yet we also live within a society and have reasonable…
The coalition negotiated hard on emergency measures. The coalition negotiated hard on emergency measures. Yui Mok/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Vague promises about seizing passports won’t fight off the Islamic State

After weeks of speculation, the UK government has played its hand, revealing the measures it is taking to confront what is apparently “the greatest and deepest terrorist threat” the UK has ever faced…
A powerful weapon in the fight against terrorism? A powerful weapon in the fight against terrorism? Shutterstock passport

Removing citizenship will only encourage UK jihadists

In the aftermath of James Foley’s killing and the concern that his killer may be from the UK, the right to British citizenship has been placed firmly at the centre of the debate about modern terrorism…
Where are you going? It doesn’t matter why. Where are you going? It doesn’t matter why. miskan

Public backs removing citizenship from Britons fighting abroad – even for a good cause

The UK government is making noises about potentially stripping British people of their citizenship if they join conflicts abroad. But while the proposal is aimed at deterring people from joining Islamic…
So, whose flag is this? So, whose flag is this? Justin Warner

Cornish pasties must be added to the UK citizenship test

The UK government has agreed to extend protected minority status to the Cornish – a status already granted to Scots, Welsh and Irish. This will require the government and public bodies to factor in the…
This one goes in the bin, I think. This one goes in the bin, I think. Steve Parsons/PA

Don’t trust the government’s citizenship-stripping policy

Should British nationals suspected of terrorist offences or other serious international crimes be stripped of their citizenship? The British government thinks so. Over the past ten years, UK governments…
The progressive side of politics in Australia needs to embrace the nation and nationalism in order to achieve lasting change. The progressive side of politics in Australia needs to embrace the nation and nationalism in order to achieve lasting change. AAP/Lukas Coch

Australia Day: is nationalism really so bad?

Australian flag boxer shorts and bikinis, an annual political stoush about who was named Australian of the Year (and who was overlooked) and a binge-drinking holiday to mark the destruction of one of the…
Australians draping themselves in the flag is part of the rise of a more jingoistic nationalism, which often rides on an ugly undercurrent of racism. Australians draping themselves in the flag is part of the rise of a more jingoistic nationalism, which often rides on an ugly undercurrent of racism. AAP/Damian Shaw

Australia Day nationalism walks in the footsteps of ugly precedents

The decision by Aldi and Big W last week to remove their government-approved Australia Day T-shirts from sale followed a social media-led backlash against the slogan on the shirts: “Australia Est. 1788…
A country that is more interested in sport than in politics is a ‘happy’ one, remarked prime minister Tony Abbott after his election success. A country that is more interested in sport than in politics is a ‘happy’ one, remarked prime minister Tony Abbott after his election success. AAP/Paul Miller

The nation decides - and sport is the winner

After the gladiatorial combat of the federal election campaign, prime minister-elect Tony Abbott appeared on Sunrise to call an Olympic-style truce. Happy is the country which is more interested in sport…
Australian cricket fans have long taunted English fans over having foreign-born players in their national team, but they may need to find a new subject for their banter. Australian cricket fans have long taunted English fans over having foreign-born players in their national team, but they may need to find a new subject for their banter. AAP/David Crosling

The citizenship hobby horse is a bumpy ride for Aussie cricket fans

One of the more bizarre hobbies of Australian cricket fans is to taunt and berate the English cricket team for the number of South African-born players in its ranks. This has been standard fare in most…
How many MPs? Don’t rely on the citizenship test for an answer - you’ll fail. How many MPs? Don’t rely on the citizenship test for an answer - you’ll fail. PA Wire

UK citizenship test is inconsistent and riddled with errors

When I took the UK citizenship test in 2009, I got the number of MPs in the House of Commons wrong, not because I didn’t know the answer, but because the Home Office didn’t. Preparing for the test was…
Australian prime minister Julia Gillard and New Zealand prime minister John Key met for bilateral talks in February 2013 to mark 30 years of close economic relations between the two countries. Australian prime minister Julia Gillard and New Zealand prime minister John Key met for bilateral talks in February 2013 to mark 30 years of close economic relations between the two countries. Ross Setford/AAP

Tougher policy needed for New Zealanders wanting to work in Australia

There are more than 600,000 New Zealand citizens in Australia, around 500,000 of whom were born in New Zealand. Prior to 2001, the Australian and New Zealand governments allowed citizens to move freely…
Would you be out for a duck in the citizenship test? Would you be out for a duck in the citizenship test? Flickr/R@VITH

Aussie Aussie Aussie: Is the Australian citizenship test fair?

The Australian citizenship test has just turned four. Its birthday passed without fanfare but this is not surprising. Soon after its introduction, a Labor government review addressed early concerns that…
Australia needs professional migrants to fill skills gaps. Australia needs professional migrants to fill skills gaps. AAP/David Crosling

Australia not about to turn its back on immigration

Australia has been a nation of immigrants since 1788. It has always sought additions to its population to increase its prosperity and economic strength. But two recent controversies have distracted us…