Bill Shorten temporary protection visas asylum seekers
Shadow minister for the NDIS Bill Shorten (Image: AAP/Alex Murray)


Labor leader Bill Shorten would grant permanent protection to Australia’s “legacy caseload” of over 10,000 asylum seekers if elected, in a move that would end years of legal limbo under the Coalition. 

The Australian ($) reports that Shorten’s policy, coming almost a decade after the asylum seekers arrived during the Rudd-Gillard governments, would abolish temporary protection visas and grant immediate permanent residency with full work and welfare rights to the remaining 10,600 people of the initial 30,000 inherited by the Coalition. The government had previously created a fast-track system that granted people either three year TPVs or five year safe haven enterprise visas.


British Prime Minister Theresa May has pulled out of a crucial Brexit vote in order to fend off a humiliating defeat in parliament, in a move that increases the chances the vote may not go ahead until next year — if at all.

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The Sydney Morning Herald and The Guardian report that May now fights for her political survival, with Conservative party opponents shoring up support over the weekend, and a January 21 deadline for a vote looming. May’s delay follows a ruling from the European Union’s top court that Britain can still revoke its intent to leave.


Advertising executive and Labor strategist Dee Madigan has again refused to delete a tweet mocking Queensland LNP frontbencher Jarrod Bleijie, after an ethics committee found it broke strict parliamentary broadcasting rules.

The ABC reports that Madigan — who retweeted ABC footage of Bleijie tearing up paper, adding the comment “Your taxes at work. A toddler tantrum for @JarrodBleijieMP” — was disappointed not to be jailed in Queensland Parliament’s old jail cells (now a wine cellar) after the committee did not recommend any further action. Further, it noted bans on sharing parliamentary footage for the purposes of satire had been removed from other, possibly more confident jurisdictions.


I’ve always seen parliament as a disadvantage for governments.

Peter Dutton

The Home Affairs minister and noted fan of the separation of powers says the quiet part out loud.


Australia faces class actions for ‘crimes against humanity’ on Manus and Nauru

“Just a day after the government successfully filibustered proposed changes to medical transfers from Nauru, George Newhouse (principal solicitor at the National Justice Project) filed two separate statements of claims at the High Court: one on behalf of all refugees and people seeking asylum detained on Nauru, and a second for a group on Manus Island.”

One Nine day: no sweet spoils for Fairfax papers from the wedding of the year

Karl Stefanovic’s extravagant wedding was timed almost to the day of his employer Nine’s marriage with former newspaper publisher Fairfax Media. But the new partnership didn’t win Stefanovic’s new colleagues at The Sydney Morning Herald or The Age any special access to his clickbait-friendly big day.”

The Coalition has an interesting definition of merit

Christopher Pyne is usually an articulate man, but listen to the senior Liberal describe his concerns about merit-based preselection and you wouldn’t know it. In the above interview with The Advertiser, Pyne said candidates should be selected on merit, ‘unless you get to the point where we are at now’. That is, the merit-based approach has gotten the Liberal Party into a situation that requires abandoning the concept of merit.”


‘Fake action’: Australia’s secret path to hitting Paris climate goals

Police rush to use new terrorism powers ($)

Government releases youth justice report response, pledges to keep kids out of detention and court ($)

Kelly O’Dwyer unveils bold solution to casual worker ‘double dipping’

Bureau issues tropical Cyclone Watch for parts of eastern Top End ($)

Negative gearing: Labor policy delay could cost budget $1.6b ($)

Free university and TAFE under ‘transformational’ Greens education plan

Ashton at centre of corruption probe that used Informer 3838

Whyalla reborn: Plans unveiled for giant new steel mill, four-star hotel, horticulture project and recycling business ($)

Humanity is on path to self-destruction, warns UN special rapporteur


Kids will listen to doctors telling the truth — Matt Noffs and Shelley Smith (Sydney Morning Herald): “In response to Defqon, the government created a Live Music Safety Panel and announced it would be holding a series of consultations with stakeholders. We were invited to attend. Despite being told not to consider pill testing, the panel did listen to us make our case, and I would like to think something came of it; that we’re slowly chipping away at the giant political wall of resistance.”

It’s time to check the data on Google and Facebook ($) — Rod Sims (The Australian): “The business models of Google and Facebook have been stunningly successful. They have, in search and social media, become the way we source much of our information. With a clear commercial focus, and almost imperceptibly, the digital platforms have monetised the attention we pay them by using the data we freely give them.”

The technology, and new thinking, needed for 100 per cent renewable grid — Giles Parkinson (RenewEconomy): “What’s most striking from the discussion with Frischknecht is that the technologies that we need are largely already here. Yes, some of them will fall further in price, and will need to in the case of batteries. But it’s not so much which technologies that will dominate the future energy system – wind, solar and storage – but how we use them that could be the biggest challenge.”


The Latest Headlines



  • Former prime minister John Howard will speak at the National Press Club on the release of cabinet papers from 1996 and 1997.

  • ACT Climate Change Minister Shane Rattenbury will help launch the first two products from environment startup The Neighbourhood Effect, which harnesses “behavioural science to make local, green living easy”.

  • Economist Warwick J. McKibbin, Business Council of Australia’s energy and climate change director Jessica Wilson and Grattan Institute energy program director Tony Wood will speak at Grattan forum “Australia’s prospects for a credible energy and climate change policy” at the National Library of Australia.


  • Greens senator Sarah Hanson-Young will present “A first-hand account of sexism in the public sphere — Is this for real in 2018? What does it mean for us all?” at the Crescent Institute.

  • Professor in the economics of innovation and public value Mariana Mazzucato will present “Can the state deliver?” for the Centre for Policy Development’s second annual John Menadue Oration.

  • Legendary NY rap artists Wu Tang Clan will perform at the Sydney Opera House.

  • UNSW will host “Sensory Scientific Exhibition & Discovery Day”, a free public event tailored for people who are blind or have low vision to experience the scientific discoveries using shapes, textures, movement and sounds.


  • Nobel Prize winner Malala Yousafzai will speak as part of the Women World Changes series.

  • Former Victorian governor Sir James Gobbo will launch the “Carlo Catani: Visionary, Creator, Genius” exhibition, dedicated to the Italian-born Victorian civil engineer, at Co. As. It.


  • The Waste, Recycling Industry Association NT will present the inaugural “Economic contribution of the waste management and secondary resources industry to the Northern Territory economy survey”.

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Peter Fray
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