flat white

The AMA’s comic crew get the vapours

Those who have been to Venice have probably witnessed some form of Commedia Dell’arte, an improvised form of comedy where…

23 Apr 2019

Smokin’ Joe Hildebrand: Bible school dropout

In what must surely come close to the modern-day equivalent of having committed career suicide, journalist Joe Hildebrand has converted…

23 Apr 2019

If one scientist was enough for Einstein…

How many scientists do you need to demonstrate to policymakers in words they can understand that CO2 is not a…

23 Apr 2019

CBD: Palmer and Shorten, blood brothers fighting for the workers

Our perspicacious political insider writes exclusively: Recent polling suggesting a surge of newfound popularity for Clive Palmer gives CBD comfort…

Magical mystery tour or highway to hell for Labor’s big red bus?

Pollsters stay at home on long weekends, but anyone watching Bill Shorten’s magical mystery tour on the big red diesel…

23 Apr 2019

Why it’s all too white in Westeros

The old leftie George R R Martin discovers that you can never be woke enough. Because the world of the…

22 Apr 2019

Three myths about equality Labor wants you to believe

Labor leader Bill Shorten is running under the motto — “A Fair Go for Australia” — but is his party…

22 Apr 2019

Backwards & Forwards: happy clappy happy

The week in politics, the week to come: Looking back Scott Morrison and the Coalition won the week. Nothing more…

22 Apr 2019

Robert Mueller pursued every avenue to dispel the collusion myth

If the report released Thursday proved anything, it was that Robert Mueller and his team of prosecutors had an extremely…

20 Apr 2019

The Mueller report: if not collusion, then obstruction?

When Robert Mueller was appointed as Special Counsel, ‘[t]he President slumped back in his chair and said, “Oh my God.…

19 Apr 2019

Who is the busiest Tory leadership candidate of them all?

Tory MPs agree that Theresa May’s days in Downing Street are numbered, but when it comes to picking her replacement…

18 Apr 2019

Will a Queen’s speech spell the end of May’s government?

What is the maximum point of danger for the government in the coming months? After Theresa May secured a six…

17 Apr 2019

Rocket science

The news has finally reached us over here in London. Australia is going to have an election. The choice will…

20 Apr 2019

Compensating abuse

Here’s a piece of news you won’t get from the ABC or the ex-Fairfax press. It concerns the gold-and-wool-rich provincial…

20 Apr 2019

Whatever happened to the flapping butterfly?

The confluence of mathematics and science provides us with proof and certainty. It is also beautiful: think of Einstein’s theory…

20 Apr 2019

Whiffy-leaks

If fish and visitors stink in three days, as Benjamin Franklin advised, it’s easy to see how Wikileaks founder Julian…

20 Apr 2019

Aussie Maggie

It is an irony and paradox that successful conservatism often requires radical solutions. So it was with Margaret Thatcher’s revolution…

20 Apr 2019

A prayer for the West

Symbolism matters. It’s why the Muslim call to prayer rang out across New Zealand after the Christchurch massacre, and why…

20 Apr 2019

Smoking out the neo-coms

Among the many considerable services Tony Abbott has rendered Australia, one was to persuade the late Paul Ramsay to endow…

20 Apr 2019

Sleepwalking to oblivion

‘Europe is sleepwalking into oblivion, and the people of Europe need to wake up before it is too late. If…

13 Apr 2019

Melbourne cast of Cosi

It was one of the most delightful Australian films of the 1990s. Directed by Mark Joffe, Cosi was also one…

20 Apr 2019

Jonathan Biggins as Paul Keating

This is a show for the nostalgic and the masochistic. The Gospel According to Paul is a one man show…

13 Apr 2019

Self portrait 1934 Nora Heysen

In his new biography of Winston Churchill, Andrew Roberts notes that ‘it was said of Emperor Napoleon III that he…

6 Apr 2019

Fernando Guimarães

The closing chapters of Homer’s Odyssey were the source for the opera regarded as the crowning achievement of composer Claudio…

30 Mar 2019

The comedy and tragedy of Trump

New York On 21 April 1980, Rosie Ruiz won the fabled Boston Marathon in record time and looked as fresh…

20 Apr 2019

A moral dilemma on my freebie holiday

We drove north and parked in the designated car park with a quarter of an hour to spare before the…

20 Apr 2019

The truth is messy. Village gossip is even messier

An angry villager accosted me outside my house as I came through my front door. ‘You’re wrong about those horses,’…

20 Apr 2019

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, master of the seas and model Englishman

Something very odd happened on the Today programme the other morning. Amid the mountains of bombast that usually fill the…

20 Apr 2019

A new version of Saladin — as silver-tongued diplomat

I can only remember one page of any of the dozens of Ladybird histories that I read avidly as a…

20 Apr 2019

Will the Pilgrims’ Way soon rival the Camino de Santiago?

There are more than 100 cathedrals in England, Scotland and Wales of many different denominations (although I for one had…

20 Apr 2019

Vasily Grossman: eye-witness to the 20th century’s worst atrocities

Vasily Grossman’s novel Life and Fate (completed in 1960) has been hailed as a 20th-century War and Peace. It has…

20 Apr 2019

A computer will never write the Brandenburg Concertos

What is creativity? Marcus du Sautoy, a mathematician and Oxford professor for the public understanding of science, offers this pert…

20 Apr 2019

The invisible man behind Hollywood’s greatest films

What do the following filmmakers have in common: Victor Fleming, John Ford, Henry Hathaway, Howard Hawks, Alfred Hitchcock, Ernst Lubitsch,…

20 Apr 2019

Murder in the basement: The Language of Birds, by Jill Dawson, reviewed

Jill Dawson has a taste for murder. One of her earlier novels, the Orange shortlisted Fred and Edie, fictionalised the…

20 Apr 2019

The Struggle and The Scream: is Karl Ove Knausgaard Munch’s doppelgänger?

Norway doesn’t have a world-class philosopher (Kierkegaard was Danish). Karl Ove Knausgaard declared at the end of his previous book…

20 Apr 2019

Was there no end to John Buchan’s talents?

John Buchan was a novelist, historian, poet, biographer and journalist (assistant editor of The Spectator indeed); a barrister and publisher;…

20 Apr 2019

Time for a Tippett revival

Running the entire course of the 20th century, Michael Tippett’s life (1905–1998) was devoted to innovation. He was an English…

13 Apr 2019

Toy boy: Machines Like Me, by Ian McEwan, reviewed

What kind of loyalty do we owe a robot we’ve paid for — one who exhibits a convincingly human kind…

13 Apr 2019

How climate change led to capitalism

At a dinner recently I was told the story of a Canadian billionaire (now defined in banking circles as someone…

13 Apr 2019

I could have stopped Harold Shipman’s killing spree and saved 175 lives

Scientists, it turns out, are really bad at statistics. Numerous studies show that a startling proportion of academics consistently misunderstand…

13 Apr 2019