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Analysis and Comment (14)

Despite firefighters' efforts, the Hazelwood mine fire showered the nearby town of Morwell with pollution. AAP Image/Country Fire Authority

Dirty air, dodgy politics: why it’s easier to attack science than listen to Morwell fire death stats

I’m quite nervous about writing this. I’m going to stray from my familiar academic world into a political one, and it’s on an issue that may very well have killed several people. My reputation has already…
Will new Victorian land clearing rules clear up confusion, or just create more? www.shutterstock.com/123250027

Hidden flaws in Victoria’s new native vegetation clearing rules

The Victorian government is overhauling its rules on native vegetation clearing, the first major change in this area for more than a decade. Vegetation management policy rarely makes it into the news…
Broadcaster Derryn Hinch has been found guilty of breaching court suppression orders in the past. Does justice need to be seen in order to be truly done? AAP/Julian Smith

Seen to be done: opening access to justice in Victoria

The Victorian state parliament is currently considering the Open Courts Bill (2013) after questions have been raised about just how much transparency is needed in the justice system. The bill, proposed…
A change in Premier should be Victoria’s chance to re-embrace wind power. Instinia/Flickr

Napthine should revisit Victoria’s wind farm planning laws

Earlier this month, Victorians woke to the news that they had a new premier: Dennis Napthine, member for the South-West Coast District, would take over from Ted Baillieu to lead the state. As climate change…
The announcement this week of funding for Victorian TAFEs won’t make up for previous cuts. AAP Image/Julian Smith

Napthine falls short: TAFE needs more than a bandaid

There might be a new premier in Victoria, but it seems there’s still no good news for TAFEs. The $200 million in structural adjustment funding announced this week is certainly welcome, but it is simply…
External economic pressures, including a high Australian dollar, will pose challenges for the Napthine government. AAP

Flat economy will continue to challenge the Victorian government

The last two years for Victorians and the Baillieu government have been challenging, with a flat economy and tight budget constraints. The next few years for the Napthine government are likely to involve…
Former Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu’s resignation could trigger a constitutional crisis for the state government. Julian Smith/AAP

Baillieu: Victorian uncertainty may lead to constitutional confusion

The dramatic resignation of Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu may have surprised many but cannot be considered altogether unexpected. A year that began poorly for the now ex-Premier yesterday completely overwhelmed…
Israeli chocolatier Max Brenner in Sydney in 2009. A Victorian court has ruled people do have a right to protest his support for the Israel armed forces. AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy

Is the Max Brenner protestors' court victory an Australian legal watershed?

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel is controversial on at least two levels. First, it targets businesses, which some (including the Victorian Government) see as an illegitimate…
Parlous states: despite staring down the barrel of recession, Victoria is set to deliver a budget surplus. But is this the right move for a stagnant economy? AAP

Is surplus the key to lifting Victoria out of its parlous state?

The Victorian government is set to hand down its budget this week. Premier Ted Baillieu is committed to returning Victoria back into the black, after it spent the first six months of this year in a $341…