So farewell Julie Bishop, off to the obscurity foreign affairs. At least her departure was a lesson in selfless politics. There’s more than a few of her colleagues — and ex-colleagues — who could learn from her example.

But the departure of Bishop won’t affect the economic debate, which in Australia remains stubbornly mired in personalities, petty politicking and dogma. It might be better if just for a moment we could address the fact that we’re off the economic map and desperately trying to establish what can be done to halt a looming economic collapse. Australians are being ill-served by their journalists, commentators and politicians of all stripes, few of whom are prepared to grapple with the fact that old orthodoxies have failed and we don’t have any new ones to rely on yet.

Instead we’re stuck with ideological stereotypes, business-as-usual politics and an inability — or maybe it’s an unwillingness — to think creatively and outside the square while we work out how to address unprecedented economic problems.

We should demand better. 

Peter Fray

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