Dr Craig Emerson has a long and storied history in Australian politics. And, as we learn on this fortnight’s episode of The Parallax Podcast, he’s quite a fan of the Terminator movies.

The former Minister for Trade and Competitiveness and Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research is the latest special guest on Crikey’s movie discussion podcast The Parallax Podcast, hosted by critics Luke Buckmaster and Rich Haridy. Previous guests include Tim Ferguson, Jon Safran and Lawrence Mooney.

Emerson, who now hosts his own weekly show, Emmo Forum, discusses with the Parallax crew the mythology of the Terminator movies and how depictions of technology in them are becoming eerily accurate.

“What was being prophesied in the Terminator movies is beginning to emerge,” he says. “A lot of the technology is with us. It’s in its infancy but I wouldn’t say it’s embryonic.”

Emerson also selected director Tony Scott’s 2006 sci-fi crime thriller Déjà Vu (starring Denzel Washington) as a talking point in a wide-ranging conversation spanning government surveillance, artificial intelligence and large scale data mining operations.

“If you go into our big supermarkets they’ll say have you got a fly buys card,” he says. “They’re not really saying, in my view, we’re trying to get you enough points to go on a holiday to Bali. What they’re actually trying to do is get information about your purchases.”

“With the best intention of any government in the world, how do you keep up with this?”

To listen, use the player above or subscribe to The Parallax Podcast iTunes feed.

For older episodes, visit The Parallax Podcast archive.


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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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