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Articles by Bernard Keane

Bishop a distraction for a government that needs clear air

Bronwyn Bishop isn’t much worse than some Speakers of the modern era. But she’s becoming a distraction for the government.

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The virus of capitalism: industry consultation through public health eyes

The exclusion of industry from public health campaigns is increasingly driven by the pathologisation of corporations as vectors of disease that must be controlled.

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Government risks looking out of touch as it clumsily sells free speech

Labor believes it can hurt the government on racial discrimination and the government is making its job easier with its poor selling.

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Racial Discrimination Act: Brandis moves to amend — not repeal — 18C

The government has unveiled its amendments to the Racial Discrimination Act, removing the concept of offence but adding racial vilification for the first time.

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Essential: we think we’re highly taxed; Labor claws back voter esteem

Australians believe they’re highly taxed compared internationally, and that it’s getting worse, today’s Essential Report finds.

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Did the pensioners save financial consumer protection?

Opposition from two key groups created a major impediment to the government’s repeal of FOFA. And both, surprisingly, are Coalition heartland.

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Operation Secretive Bureaucrats: it just keeps expanding

The cancer of Operation Sovereign Borders is extending into ever more absurd areas — including public statements of Scott Morrison himself.

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On race, discrimination and white men’s privilege

White men don’t face racial discrimination. Advocates of reforming the Racial Discrimination Act should acknowledge their own privilege, and be more consistent in defending free speech.

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Banks get what they paid for on ‘consumer protection’

Mathias Cormann enjoys the confidence of the last remaining supporter of the repeal of FOFA — $10,000 worth of it.

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‘Bonfire of the regulations’ has a decidedly musty smell

Repeal day” mainly consists of removing ancient legislative deadwood and trivial changes to current law. And in some areas, governments only ever regulate, never deregulate.

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Racial vilification: why defenders of section 18C fail

The defence of section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act falters on the key issue of subjectivity.

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No case for standing aside, but Sinodinos couldn’t have done his job

There were no grounds for Arthur Sinodinos to stand aside, but with all the attention he couldn’t have done his job at a crucial moment in his quest to gut FOFA.

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AGD returns to data retention, wants Twitter, Facebook interception powers

The Attorney-General’s Department, chastened by its previous experience, wants to consult again on data retention — but also has Twitter and Facebook in its sights.

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The highly selective artistic fury of Biennale boycotters

Sydney Biennale critics are being inconsistent in attacking Transfield while ignoring other sponsors with far worse records. Just take a look at Deutsche Bank …

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How the FWA was a miserable failure — at justifying business hysteria

Last year was the second lowest year for industrial disputes since records began. So much for business claims it would lead to industrial chaos.

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Wall-to-wall blue gives Abbott the chance of real COAG reform

Tomorrow’s Tasmanian and South Australian elections represent a huge opportunity for Tony Abbott to drive real reform via COAG. But Kevin Rudd had a similar opportunity and wasn’t able to exploit it.

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The ABC of why we need public broadcasting

There are some things that the private sector cannot provide — which is why privatising the ABC is a bad idea. The commercial sector simply won’t deliver.

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Hunting for the penalty rates evidence proves a tricky task

The evidence for the impact of penalty rates on the hospitality sector proves surprisingly hard to find. But there are some important clues …

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Snowden: mass surveillance is failing us, and we can defeat it

Edward Snowden’s two public ‘appearances’ this week have expanded the debate on both the utility of mass surveillance and how ordinary internet users can defeat it.

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Essential: strong opposition to offshoring of Qantas

Voters are deeply hostile to offshoring of Qantas jobs, while Bill Shorten continues to creep up on Tony Abbott, new polling from Essential Research reveals.

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Chinese real estate invasion? Not according to the data, fellas

Complaints about Chinese buyers inflating house prices miss the fact that foreign residential property investment encourages new housing construction.

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Training, lifeboats and asylum seekers in the ‘battle space’

The legal and operational framework for forcing asylum seekers into lifeboats and towing them back to Indonesia has become a little clearer, despite the government’s secrecy efforts.

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Essential: Coalition back into the lead despite underwhelming voters

While voters aren’t impressed by the government, the Coalition has regained its lead — and there remains a substantial core of voters who want to get even tougher on asylum seekers.

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Drunk on moral superiority: public health lobby’s nonsensical alcohol policy

Demonising the alcohol industry ignores evidence from previous successful public health campaigns, warns a senior public health figure.

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Tony Abbott’s challenge: sell a courageous call on Qantas

Tony Abbott has made the right call on Qantas. But it’s a tough sell in the face of Labor opposition — and convincing voters will be important to his government’s prospects.

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Womens Agenda

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Smart Company

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StartupSmart

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Property Observer

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