Barry Jones: Whitlam’s Vision Of Social Democracy – Parliament And Party

This is a paper presented by Barry Jones at a symposium conducted by the Whitlam Institute.

The symposium was titled: Gough Whitlam and the Social Democratic Imagination: the challenge for contemporary public policy.

Barry Jones was a Victorian state member of parliament (MLA Melbourne 1972-77) and then the federal member for Lalor (1977-98). He was Minister for Science and Technology in the Hawke government between 1983 and 1990.

Jones’ paper is notable for its pessimism about the capacity of the ALP to tackle contemporary public policy issues. He says that Gough Whitlam, Don Dunstan, Lionel Murphy and Jim Cairns were “the figures that changed the face of the ALP” in the 1960s and 1970s. He instances powerful figures of the Bob Hawke era, such as Bill Hayden, Mick Young and Kim Beazley, as well as Clyde Cameron. In this decade, however, Jones doubts that we could “identify nine current Labor politicians with equivalent intellectual power and persistence. [Read more…]


NSW Governor Marie Bashir Becomes A Dame In Queen’s Birthday Honours

The retiring Governor of New South Wales, Marie Bashir, has been made a Dame in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

BashirBashir, 83, has been Governor of NSW since 2001. She is to retire soon and be replaced by General David Hurley.

Bashir is the second Dame announced by the Abbott government. The former Governor-General, Quentin Bryce, became a Dame on the day she relinquished the position in March.

In other honours, the former Labor MP and Minister in the Hawke government, Barry Jones has been made a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC), the highest honour beneath a knighthood. Jones was a Victorian State MP before entering federal parliament as the Member for Lalor in 1977. He was Minister for Science from 1983 until 1990. He retired from parliament in 1998 and was succeeded in Lalor by Julia Gillard.

The NSW Chief Justice, Tom Bathurst, and the former Tasmanian Chief Justice, Ewan Crawford, have received an ACs, as has Les Carlyon, the journalist and writer. [Read more…]


Liberals Attack Beazley Over Knowledge Nation

The Liberal Party has launched a new television commercial attacking Kim Beazley’s Knowledge Nation policy.

The commercial appears against the backdrop of the flow chart diagram designed by the ALP’s former President, Barry Jones. The government has ridiculed the diagram as akin to a “spaghetti” policy. The Treasurer, Peter Costello, regularly refers to the “noodle nation”.

Noodle Nation

The voice-over accompanying the commercial claims the policy hasn’t been costed and suggests that the ALP isn’t interested in basic questions such as literacy testing of students and apprenticeship places. [Read more…]