Guy Rundle is a political essayist, comedy writer, activist and the correspondent-at-large for Crikey. He's a former editor of Arena Magazine.
Guy's been writing about the strangeness and politics of COVID-19. Here I ask him about what a collective virus means for certain political ideologies, what it means to be a "post-Marxist" and what he made of the Democratic National Convention and the possibilities of a Biden presidency.
Cause of the Week: Free Dr. Kylie Moore-Gilbert (change.org)
This week's ep is a conversation I had with journalist and author Melissa Davey about her brilliant new book, The Case of George Pell.
The book was launched on Tuesday night and Mel kindly asked me to discuss its details and what the story and trials of Pell mean for us now.
Cause of the Week: Broken Rites Australia (brokenrites.org.au)
It's episode 200! Hurrah.
Dominic Kelly is a political historian and Honorary Research Fellow at La Trobe University. His 2019 book Political Troglodytes and Economic Lunatics: The Hard Right in Australia examines the activities and influence of four Australian right-wing single-issue advocacy groups: the H.R. Nicholls Society (focussed on industrial relations), the Samuel Griffiths Society (constitutional issues and federalism), the Bennelong Society (Indigenous issues) and the Lavoisier Group (climate change). All four groups were created and steered by three central figures: mining executive Hugh Morgan, his speechwriter Ray Evans and former public servant John Stone. It's a fascinating and (blackly) amusing history.
Here Dominic lays out just how far these four societies have pulled Australia to the right over the past thirty years, what the Left can learn from them and what it shows us about the role that mining interests play in Australian politics.
Cause of the Week: Australian Unemployed Workers' Union (unemployedworkersunion.com)
Max Chandler-Mather is a former union activist and active member of the Queensland Greens. He was the party's candidate for the seat of Griffith in last year's election, where he increased the Greens vote by 7.2%, the biggest Greens swing in the country.
I find the more explicitly Leftist approach taken by Max and the Queensland Party really exciting because they're pushing good, anti-neoliberal polices and, more importantly, it's really working for them. Here I ask Max to explain how a democratic socialist like him is making this happen and why it's been successful. We talk about renters' rights, building the foundations of a mass party, door-knocking, selling "common sense and popular" ideas and the perennial Greens/ALP conflict.
Cause of the Week: The Queensland Greens (greens.org.au/qld)