flat white

The Gospel according to Lady Gaga

Theologians come in all sorts of strange packages nowadays. No more bearded old guys in stuffy booklined offices it seems.…

24 Jan 2019

Cricket needs a counter-reformation

The recent scandals and poor performance of Australia’s national team will quicken the quest for practical solutions. But the deeper…

24 Jan 2019

The Aboriginal industry: a new religion?

Religion is an inescapable concept – everybody has a religion. Everybody has a basic set of assumptions about metaphysics, epistemology…

24 Jan 2019

Wait a day, then comment

The mainstream media – let alone social media – are so good at generating instant outrage that I now have…

23 Jan 2019

Sorry kids, but no socialism for you

Views that Australia will turn into a utopia under socialism are wildly uninformed, and John Quiggin’s already infamous Guardian piece…

23 Jan 2019

Time to legalise mother’s other little helpers

One really must wonder what they smoke up there in New South Wales. The State Government, fresh off wondering whether…

23 Jan 2019

Time to take a second look at that Gillette ad?

If the purpose of advertising is to get as much publicity as possible, then Gillette hit on a winner last…

23 Jan 2019

Monster fires: another gift from the greens

Carbon dioxide must be an almighty gas – it gets blamed for almost every human disaster. Now we have the…

22 Jan 2019

Here’s the recipe for success

After a family Christmas in Canada my wife and I are now in London for half a year. It’s been…

19 Jan 2019

Cash cows facing starvation

Amidst all the politicking in America over Trump’s wall and the spending bill, one excellent result has been the demise…

19 Jan 2019

Western Civ: it’s not just for white people anymore

When the Ramsay Centre for Western Civilisation generously offered to fund ‘Western Civ’ courses at Australian universities, critics at the…

19 Jan 2019

Business/Robbery etc

The omens for Australia point to a lousy 2019 – politically, economically, commercially and internationally. Fear that Coalition election defeats…

19 Jan 2019

What I learned at the hand of Brother Joseph

If anybody used the term ‘religious freedom’ during my childhood, I would have assumed it referred to the times at…

19 Jan 2019

Alice in Leftist-land

‘There’s no use trying,’ says Alice to the Queen in Through the Looking-Glass, ‘one can’t believe impossible things.’ No? Clearly…

19 Jan 2019

Aux bien pensants

The New York Times reports the truly shocking news that Australia punches below its weight. The NYT’s source, Lowy Institute…

19 Jan 2019

Shame, shame, shame on New Zealand

Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel once famously wrote ‘what hurts the victim most is not the cruelty of the oppressor, but…

12 Jan 2019

Kitty Flanagan

She’s bright and very funny. Kitty Flanagan was born and educated in Sydney. She is described as a stand-up comedian;…

19 Jan 2019

Wozzeck

The story is bleak, very bleak; the music bleak and very loud, yet Wozzeck is regarded as an outstanding 20th…

12 Jan 2019

Beware of Pity

Festivals are an opportunity to present performances that might not otherwise be seen; there are several in this year’s Sydney…

5 Jan 2019

Female statue head Villa Casali

Most of us love Rome while still being a little overwhelmed by it. The Roman Empire’s geographical spread and duration…

15 Dec 2018

Taki: Should I just move to a cave in France?

Gstaad   Do any of you know what cisgender is? I just found out. Cisgender is a term that describes…

19 Jan 2019

Hell — and heaven – on the French Riviera

We drove down from the hills to visit friends of friends with a house by the sea and on the…

19 Jan 2019

Despite me virtually sexting him, my blacksmith is ignoring me — just like all the others before him

Splitting the atom is nothing compared to figuring out how to get hold of your farrier. Why is the farrier…

19 Jan 2019

In defence of the Cheltenham Festival

‘Deer-stalking would be a very fine sport,’ W.S. Gilbert once observed, ‘if the deer had guns too.’ We who love…

19 Jan 2019

Ernst Jünger — reluctant captain of the Wehrmacht

Ernst Jünger, who died in 1998, aged 102, is now better known for his persona than his work. A deeply…

19 Jan 2019

How Enoch Powell fancied himself Viceroy of India — and other startling revelations

Interviews, like watercolours, are very hard to get right, and yet look how steadily their art has become degraded and…

19 Jan 2019

Snatching victory from the jaws of defeat: the triumph of Rorke’s Drift

On 22 January last year, the entrance whiteboard at London Underground’s Dollis Hill carried a brief factual statement: On this…

19 Jan 2019

How Eric Clapton’s racism sparked a musical revolution

On 13 August 1977, a demonstration by the National Front was routed in the streets of Lewisham by thousands of…

19 Jan 2019

The best way to defeat totalitarianism? Treat it as a joke

Is there anything one can never laugh about? A question inevitably hanging over humour writing, it’s best answered by the…

19 Jan 2019

Is the threat of capital punishment really the foundation of good behaviour?

Richard Wrangham embraces controversy, and appears to enjoy munching apples from carts he upsets himself. While his new book seems…

19 Jan 2019

Lost in allegory: The Wall, by John Lanchester, reviewed

Dystopian fiction continues to throng the bookshelves, for all the world as though we weren’t living in a dystopia already,…

19 Jan 2019

Death of a rock star: Slow Motion Ghosts, by Jeff Noon, reviewed

Here is a novel set in the no man’s land between past and present, a fertile and constantly shifting territory…

19 Jan 2019

Pitches in the boardroom: football’s future assured

This is a story of resurrection. A mere three decades ago, club football in England was a professional game largely…

19 Jan 2019

Investigative journalists: new crime fiction reviewed

Despite being well-travelled as the BBC’s world affairs editor, John Simpson doesn’t roam far from home in his spy thriller,…

19 Jan 2019

Hungary is being led once again down a dangerous nationalistic path

Norman Stone has already written, with a brilliant blend of humour, understanding and scepticism, histories of the Eastern Front, Turkey,…

12 Jan 2019

Should William Penn be shaking in his grave?

The ultimate driving force of William Penn’s adult life is inaccessible, as the Quaker phrase ‘Inner Light’ suggests. While a…

12 Jan 2019