Whitlam was a radical, according to the Institute of Public Affairs. A very successful radical, and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott could learn from him.
The IPA has released an extraordinary pamphlet: Be like Gough: 75 radical ideas to transform Australia.
You could even say it’s radical.
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I was sorry to see Julia Gillard fall on Australia Day – it’s strangely unsettling to see an adult stumble, and never more so than when it’s a person of power.
To my mind, though, a far more significant fall happened earlier in the week.
I understand the pragmatism behind Ms Gillard’s decision to dump her pokies reform deal with Independent MP Andrew Wilkie. She didn’t have the numbers in parliament to get mandatory pre-commitment legislation passed.
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Now our Melbourne Cup flutters are out of the way it is worth investigating how it became valid political logic that the healthy fabric of Australian life would be shredded without big-scale gambling.
Not on horses, but gambling on pokies. Not by once-a-year punters or leviathan professionals, by low-income earners who can suddenly find their rent has disappeared down the maw of a gaming machine.
The glorified role of pokies is a political creation and it is total rubbish.
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