"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself." - Friedrich Nietzsche

Turnbull goes to Paris climate talks with ‘a policy that does not exist’

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Urban Wronski* http://urbanwronski.com/ First pub: September 21. Pic: ABC of Malcolm Turnbull
30.11.15 4:45 am

The UN Climate Change Summit circus in Paris will have to start tomorrow without Tony Abbott - not that he was going anyway. Not that it needs another clown. He got one Captain’s call right. His successor would also stay at home if he could. He should.

Michelle Grattan, The Conversation: Martin Parkinson has last laugh over Tony Abbott and Peta Credlin

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Thousands Rally in Hobart for Climate Action

Cassy O'Connor MP | Greens Leader Media Release. All pictures: Rob Walls, http://thisworkinglife.wordpress.com. First pub: Nov29
30.11.15 4:30 am

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Thousands of Tasmanians who travelled from all corners of the State rallied in Hobart for climate action in the lead up to this week’s Climate Summit in Paris.

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The Fight about Western might being Right ...

Dr Lissa Johnson, New Matilda. Pic*
30.11.15 3:45 am

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New Matilda columnist Dr Lissa Johnson explains the rationale behind why violence by the West is okay, and violence against the West is an assault on freedom-loving ‘ingroups’.

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Ted’s Bio-Blitz ...

Ted Mead
30.11.15 3:30 am

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Veterans of the Tarkine Last week approximately 100 scientists and enthusiasts took part in the Tarkine’s festival of science Bio-Blitz organised by the Bob Brown Foundation. Their mission was to discover and document the natural biodiversity in the fields of ecology, taxonomy, botany and biology in one of the last wild enclaves in Tasmania.

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‘Building plan threatens heritage-listed trees’

J. Davidson
30.11.15 3:30 am

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Our two Heritage-listed highly significant sequoia trees are over 120 years old on our Heritage-listed property.

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Beer Travel: Bushwalking with Beer

Bert Spinks, The Crafty Pint. Pic*
30.11.15 2:00 am

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Having returned to his home in Tasmania after touring the outer reaches of Northern Europe, whence he experienced beer in the Scottish Isles, Iceland and Copenhagen, wandering storyteller Bert Spinks has been out bushwalking. Here, he ponders the whys and wherefores of doing it with beer …

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One dead in log-truck smash ...

Examiner. First published November 27
29.11.15 8:31 am

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A MAN died in a crash between a car and a truck on Birralee Road in the state’s North on Thursday.

• John Hawkins in Comments: The Highway of Death: The Frankford Highway is littered with the crash sites of dead people. Some are remembered by crosses or flowers on the side of the road, all killed by these enormous Log Trucks as they head for the Batman Bridge at 110 kms plus an hour on a small narrow road that twists and turns from Westbury to Exeter. Heavy Log Trucks should be banned on this stretch for it has become the Tasmanian shortcut to the Pearly Gates. How many Tasmanians have Log Trucks killed or injured on this so-called Highway this year? I believe the number to be at least 5 with a month to go.

• Pete Godfrey in Comments: #5 Barry no one is saying it is the fault of the truck driver. The problem is that the road matters. Birallee road is a narrow, winding road with lots of crests and gullies. Sight lines are often obscured by trees and rises. So if a person who is driving onto the road or entering from a side road is not very very careful it is easy to get into trouble when another vehicle is doing 100 klm along the road. Of course if it is a car they may be able to swerve or brake to avoid an accident but when it is a fully loaded truck (especially a B double) they have trouble stopping and definitely cannot swerve. There are far too many people who drive cars in Tasmania who are lazy and cut corners, where I live it is a constant danger on the Lake Highway. I always drive way over on the left on blind corners, too many times I have come face to face with a (mainly 4wd) vehicle straddling the centre lines. I think that some roads need much lower speed limits for large vehicles, that way people who may not be taking enough care or who cannot see what is coming may have more chance. The difference between driving at 100 klm and 80klm is not very much in time on a trip. Even on a dead straight highway a 100 kilometre journey will only be 15 minutes longer. On a windy road much the difference will be much less.

• Artemesia in Comments: Linda (10) You have the wrong end of the stick here … the point is that these vehicular behemoths are being driven at a very fast pace on very inappropriate roads. Anyone who has ever used the Birralee Road will know that it should never have been approved to carry the kind of heavy transport vehicles that it does. Meet one of those on one the tight corners on that road and you have literally nowhere to go. It’s not really the truck drivers at fault - they simply can’t negotiate such a big vehicle on a road like that without encroaching onto the other lane. “Cowboy drivers” are to be found behind any wheel.

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Review of Integrity Commission Act 2009

Vanessa Goodwin, Attorney-General Media Release. Pic*
29.11.15 8:00 am

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The Honourable William Cox AC, RFD, ED has been appointed by the Governor to undertake the independent five-year review of the Integrity Commission Act 2009.

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Japan’s decision to recommence whaling is caused by Australian government weakness

Greens spokesperson for Whaling, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson Media Release
28.11.15 8:01 am

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Greens spokesperson for Whaling, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson is calling on the Australian Government to immediately condemn Japan for their decision to recommence whaling in the Southern Ocean this Summer. Senator Whish-Wilson said, “No Australian Government in a generation has been so silent and so passive in providing supposed opposition to whaling.

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VDL sale: Chinese businessman Lu Xianfeng revealed as buyer

Jane Ryan, ABC. Pic: From VDL via ABC
27.11.15 4:02 am

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The proposed buyer of Tasmanian dairy giant Van Diemen’s Land Company (VDL) is Moon Lake Investments, an Australian company set up specifically for the purchase by Chinese businessman Lu Xianfeng.

• Don Knowler in Comments: Interesting that originally VDL refused to name the bidder, or state which country they were from, because it was “commercial in confidence”. as if the Tasmanian people had no right to know.

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TODAY: Registered Clubs Association of NSW folds ...

Independent Member for Denison Andrew Wilkie Media Release. ABC Pic: of Andrew Wilkie. First pub: Nov 25
27.11.15 3:15 am

Image for TODAY: Registered Clubs Association of NSW folds ...

The Registered Clubs Association of New South Wales is suing Andrew Wilkie for defamation in relation to his comments on the ABC about Peter Garrett being offered money by someone in the poker machine industry.

• James Boyce in Comments: First it was the Gunns 20. Now it is the Pokies 2. We must stand together. Hang in there Andrew. They are but thugs. James Boyce on pokies ... on Tasmanian Times, HERE

• Karl Stevens in Comments: I’m sure the Registered Clubs Assoc of NSW are terrified of what was revealed in the ‘Ka-Ching! Pokie Nation’ doco. Who would have known pokies exploit vulnerabilities in the human brain concerning ‘anticipation of reward’? This was dynamite information because anybody can exploit these vulnerabilities at any time for their own benefit and let’s face it, the good are not running the Earth … yet?

JAMES BOYCE EARLIER on Tasmanian Times ...

FRIDAY, November 27 ...

•  Wilkie in court today ...

• ... 10.30am: Clubs NSW folds ...

… Bad things happen when people are forced into silence. So I will continue to speak up when I see wrongdoing, and won’t be intimidated by anyone or any industry. I certainly won’t be silenced by the poker machine industry generally, which inflicts shocking harm in the community and which always seems to get its way as far as most politicians are concerned.

• John Hawkins in Comments: Andrew Wilkie is real live, thinking and proper representative for the people of Tasmania in the Federal Parliament. We are so lucky to have someone of this calibre untainted by Lib/Lab politics batting for us. Light years ahead of the likes of Number one on the Liberal ticket the appalling Abetz.

• John Biggs in Comments: It’s great feeling to have a politician who stands up for his principles. The politician who comes out of this as weak as piss is Peter Garrett. Who as a fierce leftie—so he sang—turned out as an obedient little puppy and did what his masters told him. Then when he did speak out—they tried to bribe me—he folded “But they didn’t. Just kidding. Sorry about that.” He screwed up on almost every environmental issue, including the pulp mill. Labor still at it: recruiting popular stars like Adam Goodes, Nova Peris when they have run out of party hacks. What they have in common is that they are all policy-free. Incidentally, read Laura Tingle’s latest Quarterly Essay which explains the above and a lot lot more, all about the collapse of government in Australia, starting with Hawke a bit, Keating a bit more, Howard really stuffed the checks and balances system and Abbott trampled on what is left. The key is an independent and expert pubic service, which is incompatible with neoliberalism. That and a two party system which isn’t a two party system.

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Mt Lyell re-opening likely within two to three years

Martyn Goddard, Analyst. First published November 25
26.11.15 5:45 am

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The Tasmanian government is now sure that the Mt Lyell copper mine at Queenstown will not, as previously feared, be closed down and flooded. And the prospects for a re-opening within two to three years have substantially improved.

But if you look at the long-term picture for copper, with urbanisation, the use of electricity ‒ particularly renewable energy ‒ you still see the demand growing there. Renewable energy generation consumes much more copper than coal-fired power stations. Wind turbines contain two tonnes for every megawatt of output.

• Pilko in Comments: Marty Goddard talks up a Labor & Liberal pet industry & guess what? The character assassinations from the usual Lib/Lab lackeys aren’t forthcoming this week? Where is the Lukester? I’ve scoured social media & there is zip, nada, zilch, not a bad word to be said about Martyn.

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Senate fails to reinstate night-fishing ban on super trawler Geelong Star by a vote

Greens spokesperson for Fisheries, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson Media Release
26.11.15 5:30 am

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(Last) evening the Senate failed to disallow regulations that had lifted a ban on night fishing by the factory-freezer vessel Geelong Star by a single vote. A tied vote, 31 for and 31 against, means the disallowance motion to reinstate the night-fishing ban was unsuccessful. The Geelong Star courted controversy earlier in the year when it caught and killed 9 dolphins.

• ABC Radio is reporting the death of two more dolphins/seals? overnight ... ABC: Geelong Star factory trawler: Deaths of two more seals revealed in Senate

Rebecca Hubbard, Environment Tasmania, Jon Bryan, Tasmanian Conservation Trust . Tooni Mahto, Australian Marine Conservation Society, Nobby Clark, Game Fish Tasmania Sports Fishing Club: 15,000 Emails in 24 hours - Rec Fishers Urge Senate to Ban Geelong Star Night Fishing

Andrew Wilkie: A statement on the super-trawler … They’ve already gutted fisheries elsewhere in the world and it beggars belief that the Australian Government is delighted to have one of the awful things in our waters. The Geelong Star should be banned immediately and sent packing. If it’s to remain in Australia, perhaps it could be turned into a monument to bad politicians making bad decisions.

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Researchers suspect fox evidence fabrication, Tasmania Government opts not to investigate

25.11.15 3:00 am

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An independent scientific report using the Tasmanian Environment Department’s own data has suggested evidence of foxes may have been fabricated. The group behind the report wants the findings investigated but the Government is refusing to take any action.

• Transcripts of ABC Fox Reports ...

• David Obendorf in Comments: … With respect this is hardly just “a scientific disagreement” as Minister Rockliff would assert. The senior management of DPIPWE have chosen not to disagree with our analysis or to contest the basic findings of this report to Government. If they had done so, the independent scientists group would, of course, have taken any formal inputs from them into consideration … The greater concern in this unfortunate wastage are the Invasive Animal CRC and DPIPWE staff who claimed in 2013 that “foxes are now widespread in Tasmania” based on such bogus data set. Tasmania deserves a full inquiry into this sordid mess and should go back to falsification of dead fox material also used as empirical evidence from 2001 to 2006.

• Ian Rist in Comments: I remember going along to the State offices in Launceston with Jeremy Rockliff in early 2003 and speaking with Rene Hidding (then Liberal leader) on the veracity of evidence (particularly the fox cub import allegations). I remember suppying the FOI letters to Hidding and Rockliff. Very few Tamanian politicians could declare they were unaware of the circumstances surrounding Tasmanian fox matters. The Circus rolls on and it will never be put to bed until there is a thorough, independent and complete investigation. Whilst there are many politicians with varying interests in these matters…the number one I believe after much thought and deliberation is some don’t want exposure on a matter they think may jeopardise future biosecurity and wildlife funding. Nothing could be further from reality, whilst ever there is this cloud of doubt and mistrust the Feds. are going to be very cautious on such matters.

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‘World’s Best Practice’ ... ? Rebuff Libs, say Weber, Putt, McKim ...

Ted Mead*. First published November 16. Pics*
25.11.15 2:30 am

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Forestry Tasmania has long professed a catch-cry of ‘World’s Best Logging Practice’, but outside the insular walls of its offices there is a different reality.  Images of logging practises in Tasmania have been imprinted deeply into our minds. Scenes of utter destruction like the Hiroshima-blackened landscapes, the smoke-filled mushroom clouds that billow and waft into our urban environment, and the once endless procession of log trucks parading our highways en-route to the insatiable jaws of the woodchip mills.

Essentially Tasmania’s forest industry over the past several decades created an Armageddon upon our natural environment, yet in this 21st century Forestry Tas shows no sign that it wishes to repent. Its quest for FSC is not aimed at redemption. It is merely pursuance for a licence to blindly continue in its myopic ideology.

• Paul Tapp in Comments: Within my dream/There lives a scream/Which fills me so with fear/I feel its breath upon me/The beast is drawing near/It’s breath is hot and fetid/And it vomits in the seas/The beast has dogs/Which carry logs/The monster feeds on trees … I visited the Tarkine and also took photographs of soaring, silent trees and wondered how anybody could cut them down, disturb the peace of ancient forests and the mysteries within. But they do, without conscience, for at the end of the day, it is merely a tree and it is a practical way to put bread on the table, when jobs are scarce and global economics can put them on unemployment lines at any time.

• Pete Godrey in Comments: Well put Ted, thanks for maintaining the rage. The picture of Triabunna woodchip mill is pertinent, after Gunns closed the mill there were 30,000 tonnes of woodchips left unsold. The new owners had to move them to rehabilitate the site to meet EPA requirements. So 30 thousand tonnes of our forests were destroyed and left to rot, that is around 3000 truck loads of logs cut, carted, chipped and left to rot. And the best bit is we paid massive subsidies to the companies to do it. Rage is the only response. This ongoing conversion of rainforest to eucalypt forest must never be sanctioned by FSC or any other organisation that claims to be environmentally responsible.

Tasmania’s first BioBlitz in the Tarkine!

Cassy O’Connor: Forest Practices Plans Routinely Ignored

Cassy O’Connor: FSC Looking Like a Mirage Under Harriss

Vica Bayley: Government plans to sell plantations threatens FSC and PEFC certification

Paul Harriss: Increased protection for critically endangered Swift Parrot on Bruny Island

Peg Putt: Cautious welcome to Bruny Island logging moratorium

Vica Bayley: Action on Bruny swift parrot habitat welcome but needs to be more widespread

Jenny Weber: Swift Parrot survival depends on permanent protection of forests on Bruny Island and across Tasmania

Rosalie Woodruff: Swift Parrot Logging Moratorium

Paul Harriss: Hardship program to assist forest contractors devastated by Labor-Green policies … The Government has reallocated $1 million in Commonwealth funds, which remain unspent from previous compensation schemes for a limited hardship relief program. Today, I am pleased to announce details of the hardship program are now available and applications open …

Sarawak Report: Environmentalists Want Answers From Adenan As Peatland Clearing By KTS Continues

MONDAY, November 23 ...

Matthew Groom: Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area … The technical advisers will spend the week in Tasmania assessing the state of conservation of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area and will provide advice on the finalisation of the draft Management Plan for the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area …

TUESDAY, November 24 ...

ABC: Private forestry company Forico wins environmental tick for woodchip exports

Jenny Weber, Peg Putt: World Heritage Reps urged to rebuff Tasmanian Government on rainforest logging ... … “The rainforest ‘special species’ logging trial in the southern forests coupe EP048C had demonstrated the range and scale of disturbance associated with such logging. Any attempt to log in the World Heritage property will be significantly detrimental to the maintenance of Outstanding Universal Values,” Ms Weber said …

Nick McKim: Time for Hodgman and Turnbull to Accept Umpire’s Call on World Heritage Logging … “The Liberals’ bloody mindedness over logging the TWWHA is already damaging the tourism industry, with Lonely Planet ( TT HERE ) issuing warnings to see these precious areas before they are compromised.” …

ABC: Specialty timber industry wins Tasmanian Government support, despite doubts over logging in UN-listed areas

• Claire Gilmour in Comments: A gumtree ad on 4 Nov 2015. “I am a 23 year old male currently seeking work. I currently work in forestry planting, pruning and fertilizing trees but the warm weather caused the dirt to dry out to much and we have been laid off untill further notice… I live in wynyard and have my motorcycle license.” Until further notice eh!? What say ye FT and Government? So Forestry and their business partners are laying off more people … so the Tas government fly on in with more Fed money to gift …

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STATE: Erich’s triumph ...

John Hawkins, Chudleigh. First published November 23
24.11.15 4:30 am

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The Examiner, the organ of the Right Wing of the Liberal Party in Tasmania has spent the past month - for some completely unknown reason - promoting our Erich Abetz as the Number 1 candidate on the Tasmanian Liberal Party Senate ticket.

• Use the TT NEWS Dropdown Menu (top nav bar) for news/comment on this news ...

• Jack Lumber in Comments: … It is with regret that I admit that Mr Abetz has achieved what we all thought was an impossibility ... a consensus. Throughout the state a “WTF” was heard in every room ( with the exception of the dazed and confused state Liberal Party room )

• John Hawkins in Comments: … We must ensure that the Liberals do not get 2 quotas, in the next election. With this in mind Scruffy will be standing against Abetz for a seat in the Senate. “If you are going to vote for a dog ... vote for a real one”. Vote Scruffy …

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NATION: Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No. It’s Super Mal!

Urban Wronski* http://urbanwronski.com/ First pub: October 23. Pic: ABC of Malcolm Turnbull
23.11.15 4:45 am

Image for NATION: Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No. It’s Super Mal!

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No but look out below!  It’s Super Mal, the man of tomorrow. Faster than a speeding spill ballot, the supersonic ‘small l Liberal’ super hero and man of Chinese steel rockets into the stratosphere, unlike the plummeting spot price for iron ore and other commodities we, poor sods, have yoked our futures to, courtesy of the myopia of his post-modern political class and its minders.

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MARIA ISLAND: ‘We want to unleash its full potential’

Leo Schofield
23.11.15 4:30 am

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“Maria Island is one of Tasmania’s great untapped tourism opportunities. We want to unleash its full potential.” Thus spake Matthew Groom in an article in the Mercury on Saturday November 21. ( Read Matthew Groom’s Media Release here )

• Leo Schofield in Comments: … it’s words like ‘unleash’ that scare the living daylights out of me. Keep Maria as it is. No need to see it as another Port Arthur. The resort and marina suggestions were for the Triabunna mill site. How long is it since Graeme Wood bought this site and revealed his terrific plans. Then came Gormless Guy and his expensive and pointless inquiry into what was a done deal. Read the transcript of some of the sessions of said inquiry. Feydeau could not have done better …

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Report Dispels Myth of Cheap Tassie Rent

Pattie Chugg, Shelter Tas EO Adrian Pisarski, National Shelter EO Media Release
23.11.15 4:25 am

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The release of Australia’s first Rental Affordability Index (RAI) has been welcomed by Tasmania’s peak body for affordable housing and homelessness, Shelter Tas.

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Tassie left off the (mushroom) Map ...

Leo Schofield
23.11.15 4:20 am

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Found this curious mushroom among some I bought at the supermarket this week. It looks remarkably like a map of Australia but once again they’ve overlooked Tassie …

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A response to Lissa Johnson ...

Shane Humpherys*
23.11.15 4:15 am

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A response to Lissa Johnson: Spot the Extremist It is undoubtedly true that the US-led invasion of Iraq under George W Bush, Blair & Howard et al. was a duplicitous piece of foreign policy that has had far reaching consequences which are still reverberating today.

Mercury: Being stuck on barricade may have saved Emma Parkinson’s life

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Editor's Choice

Editor's Choice

Turnbull goes to Paris climate talks with ‘a policy that does not exist’ 



One Man’s Final Wish 



St Marys Cathedral, Dec 19: Sing Noel, Allegri Ensemble ... 



Hobart Bookshop: Anne Kellas: ‘The White Room Poems’ 



Tasting Tasmania ... 




What's On

What's On

St Marys Cathedral, Dec 19: Sing Noel, Allegri Ensemble ... 






seems the integrity appointees are polliies’ appointees and are hence, in my view,  comprised only whistle blowers…

Funding and Disclosure

Tasmanian Arts Guide

TV Tonight

Daily Kudelka


Martyn Turner



The Automatic Earth

Twitter Feed - #politas

Dr Kevin Bonham

The New Daily

The Saturday Paper


Truth in Media

The Intercept

Blogger Me


Daily Mail Australia

ABC News Fact Check


Bluestone Magazine


No Fibs

ABC Vote Compass

Learn Discover Access

TROVE at National Library

The Guardian - Australian Edition

The Global Mail

The Conversation

Eureka Street

3 Quarks Daily

The Idiot Tax



Tasmanian Food Guide

Tasmanian Bands

Independent Australia

ABC Radio National

David Horton

Failed Estate


Feeding the Chooks

International Consortium of Investigative Journalists

The Racket

Paige Loves Books

Don Knowler

Tim Squires


Gazette of Law & Journalism

The Culture Concept Circle