Background Briefing (ABC). Alex Mann and Background Briefing are doing us all a service by keeping an eye on the Far Right here in Australia and its attempts to infiltrate mainstream politics. Last year they brought us Haircuts and Hate: the rise of Australia’s Alt-Right and now they’ve produced Shitposting to the Senate: How the alt-right infiltrated Parliament. When Fraser Anning starts spewing his bile, we’d better be careful how we react because we may well be playing right into their hands.
The Drawing Room (ABC) I’m not that keen on Patricia Karvelas, and so I don’t often listen to this program. But I just finished reading Jill Giese’s excellent The Maddest Place on Earth and in this segment, Giese is talking about the book with Karvelas.
Giese’s book fascinated me so much that I decided to seek out more about The Vagabond, whom she cites at length. Earshot has a good program about him as one of the very early undercover journalists called “The Vagabond: Digging the Dirt on Melbourne“. As part of their discussion, they go to visit contemporary non-fiction writer Helen Garner, who is impressed with The Vagabond’s keen observational skills and writing style.
Big Ideas. A friend of mine mentioned that they heard a woman speaking on Radio National with enthusiasm and knowledge about Australia’s electoral system. “Ah!” I thought, “that would be Judith Brett!”, and it was. Recorded at the Avid Reader, “How Australia got its unique system of voting and elections” is based on Brett’s new book From Secret Ballot to Democracy Sausage.