Issue 23 – 24 December to 30 December 2020

Stop believing in fairytales: Australia’s coal industry doesn’t employ many people or pay its fair share of tax
Richard Denniss | The Guardian
Galileo was imprisoned for life for the “heresy” of ignoring dogma and relying on empirical evidence. And while those who rely on Australian Bureau of Statistics data to describe the Australian fossil fuel industry aren’t jailed (yet), they are certainly ostracised by the inquisitors of climate denial.

Covid-19 saved Morrison, but climate is the real test
Mike Seccombe | The Saturday Paper
Having outperformed the world in containing coronavirus, Australia’s lack of action on climate change will precipitate a much greater crisis.

More working from home will transport us back to the future
Ross Gittins | Nine Newspapers
Before we get too carried away, let’s remember one thing: in human history, there’s nothing new about working from home. Indeed, when you think about it you realise humans have spent far more centuries working at home than not.

Biden will wage war on the Kurdish revolution
Marcel Cartier | Green Left Weekly
One of the often misunderstood and complicated aspects of US foreign policy has been – and will likely continue to be – the relationship of Washington to the Kurdish nation that finds itself split between Syria, Iraq, Turkey and Iran.

Jean-Luc Mélenchon Is Launching a Fresh Bid for the French Presidency
Julian-Nicolas Calfuquir | Jacobin
In 2017’s French election, radical left-winger Jean-Luc Mélenchon surged to 20 percent support, only narrowly failing to make the runoff. Last month he announced his candidacy for the 2022 race — and he’s trying to show that his France Insoumise movement can govern as well as protest.

Fracking on Country in the NT
Rick Morton | The Saturday Paper
As a senate inquiry launches a scathing critique of the legislative failures that led to the destruction of the Juukan Gorge caves, traditional owners in the Northern Territory are fighting a fracking project that threatens water sources and sacred sites

Arena Online in 2020
Timothy Erik Ström | Arena
In such a politically loaded time, it is plain that there is a need for serious, radical and critical analysis, and for this to work with practical actions and experiments in new social forms. It is equally plain that the carcass of mainstream media and corporate universities are unwilling and unable to fulfill their democratic function. 

Scott Morrison Isn’t the Australian Trump — He’s a Margaret Thatcher Tribute Band
Liam McLoghlin | Jacobin
Australian PM Scott Morrison is often compared to Donald Trump. Morrison is certainly a race-baiter who serves the rich, but his brand of reheated “populism” borrows far more from Britain’s Margaret Thatcher and former PM John Howard. Unfortunately, it’s not dead yet.

How Josh Frydenberg is backing the boss class amid capital-on-capital skirmishes
Ben Butler | The Guardian
A lot of the Frydenberg program favours what you might call the managerial class – the executives who in normal times prowl the mahogany-lined corridors of CBD towers but this year have been confined to their luxury homes in Point Piper or Toorak.

Evil Lord Keynes flies to rescue of disbelieving Liberals
Ross Gittins | Nine Newspapers
We’ve forgotten that, whereas our past recessions were caused by the overuse of high interest rates to slowly kill off a boom in demand over a year or more, the coronacession is a supply shock.

Housing for Thriving in a Post-COVID World
Louise Crabtree, Joanne Mcneill, Sidsel Grimstad, Neil Perry, Emma Power, Wendy Stone | Arena Quarterly
Among Australians’ various experiences of the pandemic, the complexities of Melbourne’s social-housing lockdown demonstrated a microcosm of the issues at play, throwing harsh light onto the ongoing inadequacy of federal support for social housing and raising concerns about the over-policing of certain communities amid the intensifying context of Black Lives Matter. However, the lockdown also revealed the resilience of the communities impacted and the generosity of vast social networks in providing rapid, well-organised support.

High Profits, Low Principles: betting losses balloon as Big 4 keep lending to gamblers
Elizabeth Minter | Michael West Media
The Big 4 banks – ANZ, Westpac, CommBank and NAB – continue to lend people money to gamble with. You can’t get a personal loan from a bank to use for gambling. So how is gambling a permitted purpose for a credit card? On what planet is this considered “responsible lending”?

Argentine Feminists Are About to Win the Fight for Abortion Rights
Camila Baron | Jacobin

Australia’s first Indigenous suicide crisis line
Rachael Knowles | National Indigenous Times

Investigation: how political donations protect a cosy loophole for Australia’s plutocrats
Stephanie Tram | Michael West Media

Bill Gates’s Foundation Is Leading a Green Counterrevolution in Africa
Jan Urhahn | Jacobin

America set to induct first Native American Cabinet secretary
Rachael Knowles | National Indigenous Times

The COVID-19 vaccine and the perils of political advertising
Binoy Kampmark | Independent Australia

The virus does discriminate: blue-collar Wyndham was Australia’s coronavirus hotspot
Nino Bucci | The Guardian

Casual and part-time jobs at record levels after Australia’s Covid recession, analysis finds
Daniel Hurst | The Guardian

Michael Pascoe: An outsider’s look at Australia’s economy
Michael Pascoe | New Daily

How Australian Workers Prepared to Socialize Industry During the Great Depression
James Haigh | Jacobin

How Australia can learn from Scandinavian countries
Paul Budde | Independent Australia

The Pitts: Government gifts Woodside $130 million Christmas present
Callum Foote | Michael West Media

Now is the time to review the rules by which you live
Ross Gittins | Nine Newspapers