In 1990, Bob Hawke and his cabinet looked poised to take climate action. But the following year his prime ministership ended.
What if Bob Hawke, hailed as a leader who actually 'got' environmental issues, had never been rolled by Paul Keating? Perhaps the climate policy wars would have turned out differently.
Former prime minister Bob Hawke has died, age 89.
AAP/State Library of NSW/The Conversation
From doted-on child to Rhodes Scholar, ACTU president and ultimately prime minister, Robert James Lee Hawke had a significant impact on Australian life.
Coalition leader John Hewson had trouble selling his economic policy platform to the electorate.
NATIONAL ARCHIVES OF AUSTRALIA
All the polls suggested the Keating government would be finished at the 1993 election – until Opposition Leader John Hewson launched a 650-page policy document called "Fightback!".
Most Australians did not want Malcolm Turnbull to be deposed as prime minister.
Australians have never liked sitting PMs being deposed by their own parties - but the outrage over Malcolm Turnbull's destruction is the greatest in modern history.
Wes Mountain/The Conversation
The Liberals who want to tear down Malcolm Turnbull claim they are in a battle for the heart and soul of the party - but where is this heart and soul, and how strong is it?
Happy days: Opposition Leader Bill Shorten in parliament.
Labor has managed more cohesion in recent years because its left and right wings have shifted to common ground - partly through its factions.
The insults have becoming increasingly personal, but they don’t always work.
Creating epithets for political opponents has a long history in Australia – and when it works, it can be devastating.
Some have set the course for electoral victory, others have tanked. In any case, federal budgets are important moments in the life of governments – especially those that are a little wobbly.
If Malcolm Turnbull is to draw any comfort from a self-inflicted wound, he might consider the history of leaders who have endured bad polling and prevailed.
History warns us to beware of the fickleness of polls taken mid-term, which tend to be a snapshot rather than a deep reading of the electoral mood.
By preventing Australians from visiting a ‘sacred place’ like the Kokoda Track, it is more likely that local landowners grievances will be met.
ABC News/Eric Tlozek
The blockade of the Kokoda Track by local landowners is a product of the complex political and economic issues currently affecting Papua New Guinea.
The 1994 Employment Minister Simon Crean even had to be briefed by officials on the content of the policy when Working Nation was released.
Cabinet papers released today by the National Archives show Working Nation began as a rational exercise but was soon overtaken by a desire to make the policy everything to everyone.
The Keating cabinet in 1995, featuring John Faulkner (back row, centre), whose vision for a carbon price was thwarted.
AAP Image/National Archives of Australia
Paul Keating's government, faced with the prospect of international action on climate change, took steps to preserve the coal industry - a tactic that has been rebooted many times since.
Paul Keating drove a policy agenda that had been rallied after the 1993 victory.
After 1993, Paul Keating became ever-more dominant in cabinet policy discussions to ensure a legacy for the Labor government.
Queen Elizabeth signs the visitors’ book at Parliament House, while Prime Minister Paul Keating and Parliament House officials look on in February 1992.
National Archives of Australia
The arguments about a potential Australian republic in cabinet submissions suggest a failure of imagination and, more seriously, of trust.
Paul Keating is known as one of the most Indonesia-friendly Australian prime ministers.
It was Paul Keating himself who first raised the idea of a security agreement between Indonesia and Australia in June 1994 to Indonesian President Soeharto.
Wayne Swan has drawn a parallel between the the ALP’s ‘Laborism’ and New Labour’s ‘Third Way’ in the UK.
While both parties may have set out to modernise and renew their ideologies, the ALP's and Labour’s attempts to marry the old and new instead precipitated two separate identity crises.
The end game of Tony Abbott’s policy pitches is unknown, but in the interim they seem to be destabilising the party.
For his own good, Malcolm Turnbull can’t get out of the country quickly enough. He’s off on Wednesday to the G20 in Germany and, if he has any sense, while he’s abroad he’ll try to avoid being drawn on…
Eddie Koiki Mabo (left) and Jack Wailu on the Torres Strait island of Mer.
National Archives of Australia/AAP
The Mabo decision changed Australia's concept of land ownership. It was a divisive yet important step toward recognising Indigenous rights and establishing native title.
The Hawke Labor government had a strong incentive to seek a new approach to industrial relations when it came to office.
National Archives of Australia
The Prices and Incomes Accord was a series of agreements between Labor and the ACTU where unions would moderate their wage demands in exchange for improvements in the 'social wage'.
Unionists protesting the reduced role of the Industrial Relations Commission after the introduction of the work choices legislation in 2006.
Even though enterprise bargaining agreements proved controversial when introduced, their use is actually in decline today.