Scott Hargreaves and Dr Chris Berg each week discuss the deeper issues in Australian politics
The Looking Forward Podcast Episode 93: Looking Forward: Endgame
After two years on air that’s a wrap for the IPA’s Looking Forward Podcast, as least as a weekly panel show. The biggest issues over the journey have been Trump and the populist insurrection on the centre-right, and of course coronavirus and how populations and Governments have responded.
CoHosts Scott Hargreaves and Chris Berg reflect on what they said and what they learned along the way, as they consider what’s next for the Centre-Right in America and Australia in particular. Will it be the continuing isolation of the libertarians, or will neofusionism take hold; adapting William F. Buckley’s broad church approach to a new era? If it was only the Cold War that held the original coalition together; to what can we look now?
Also mentioned is real economics versus the rubbish taught in (most) Universities, the disappointing nature of Australian business leaders and “Chairman’s Lounge Syndrome”, policy making in a risk-averse age, the overreliance on experts, the uses of a conservative disposition as a rational response to societal threats, and why we should (nevertheless) be optimistic about tech and society’s capacity to adapt and innovate.
In a final Books and Culture segment the hosts review their favourite picks and reflect on what these picks showed about the value society derives from the explosion of streaming services, the impact of great books, and also the corrosion of our creative culture and the extinguishment of the hero as evidenced by Barry, The Boys, and the proliferation of shows with assassins as the lead character.
The host send thanks to their listeners and urge those that aren’t already to join the IPA (ipa.org.au)
Thanks Ron, Great Party!
Will history’s verdict be that Trump trashed the legacy of Reagan - as some of his supporters delightedly claim - or that there are stronger continuities between the two, sharing records of lower taxes, regulatory reform and a strong military, all built on votes from mainstream Americans. Where has the Trump insurrection left the Republican Party, and what are the lessons for the Liberals in Australia? By disputing the election and frustrating the handover, will Trump drive people away or is he just positioning to be a de facto Leader of the Opposition for the next four years. If he is, what hopes for those like Marco Rubio who want to complete the demographic reversal of the two major parties, let alone “Restorationists” like Nikki Haley who want to walk the Republicans back from the attitude of permanent revolution. If Conservative Populism rules in Australia too, does that just mean Liberal politicians will jettison all philosophy and ideas and praise their own pragmatism whilst doing nothing that is not in their own self-interest? In the Books and Culture segment, Andrew Bushnell pays a deserved tribute to the great Chuck Yeager, dead at 97, and his portrayal in 1983’s The Right Stuff. Chris Berg’s children drive him to watch and praise Disney Plus’ consciously lightweight The World According to Jeff Goldblum, and Scott Hargreaves describes the epic battles of Tories and Whig in the Long Eighteenth Century in a two minute summary whilst reviewing Jonathan Swift: His Life and His World by Leo Damrosch Links: The Republican Identity Crisis After Trump (New Yorker) https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/11/02/the-republican-identity-crisis-after-trump
The Looking Forward Podcast Episode 91: Mysterious Measures to Decolonise Museums
All through the western world Museum Directors have set themselves the task of “decolonising” their collections and exhibits, but what could this become and what does it mean anyway? Do they know, or are they just going woke to protect their own jobs? Is it about appropriately recognising indigenous cultures, or something more?
Regular co-hosts Scott Hargreaves and Chris Berg are joined by the IPA’s Bella d’Abrera to look at the latest ructions at the British Museum and also museums and libraries closer to home, as they look for answers.
The Panel also looks at the fast-fading opportunity in NSW to finally dispense with the national cross-curriculum priorities crowding out and rendering incoherent what is taught K-10 across Auststralia.
Plus in the usual Books and Culture segment, they look at Norsemen, the Norwegian but English language program Berg describes as Game of Thrones meets The Office, the strangely interestingly documentary on the British/Canadian/Indian/American War of 1812, and the gobsmackingly good turns by Nicole Kidman and Hugh Grant in The Undoing.
The Looking Forward Podcast Episode 89: The Reckoning of Our Afghan War
The allegations of serious war crimes by Australian special forces contained within the Brereton Inquiry report mean some change is necessary even as justice takes its course. But should Parliamentarians involve themselves more in Defence and military oversight, as Andrew Hastie MP suggests, or could this politicise the military and cast it into the culture wars? Could adverse findings about a ‘warrior culture’ lead to something useless in its place? And could a ‘black armband’ view of our country and its military record imperil the venerated place of the Australian War Memorial in Australian life and remembrance?
Co-hosts Scott Hargreaves and Chris Berg are joined by former Defence Department employee, Andrew Bushnell, for this discussion. They also revisit the omnishambles that is South Australia’s response to its ‘pizza box’ coronavirus cluster. What does the panic tell us about Governments’ capacity to manage science, public health and known unknowns?
The panellists also discuss their culture picks, including the disappointing Hillbilly Elegy on Netflix, Gotham, the monumental history of New York’s early years, and Based on a True Story, the new and brilliant ‘memoir’ by SNL alumnus, Norm McDonald.
The Looking Forward Podcast Episode 89: Brutal Lockdowns Redux: SA Cut
Now it’s South Australia's turn for lockdown hell for at least six days, and Daniel Wild joins the panel live from Adelaide to report on the chaotic decision making behind the Government’s draconian measures.
Apparently the coronavirus spread by failure in Hotel Quarantine - who would have expected THAT! Seriously, are our Governments incapable of learning and preparing, and delivering a decent test and trace system?
Meanwhile, the Fatwa issued by Kevin Rudd against Rupert Murdoch gained support from Malcolm Turnbull and the ABC, and now the Senate has launched yet another inquiry into ‘media diversity’. How real are the claims made about Murdoch’s influence, and what does that really have to do with the state of media in Australia? Is this just setting us up for Finklestein Mark II, with government licensing of media outlets and journalists?
We then move on to discuss our culture picks for the week including Daniel’s Australian Prime Ministers by editor Michelle Grattan; Chris’s Netflix original TV series Stranger Things by Ross Duffer and Matt Duffer, which he recommends to anyone looking for an absurd, high quality production with amusing cliches; and Scott’s TV series The Crown by Peter Morgan which Scott enjoys but critiques for its pushing of political agendas and subtly supporting the aristocrats' snobbish view of Margaret Thatcher.
Australian Prime Ministers; Michelle Grattan
Stranger Things; Ross Duffer and Matt Duffer
The Crown; Peter Morgan
The Looking Forward Podcast Episode 88: Just Another High Vis Election
It's a global High Vis vest frenzy, because whether or not he’s President going forward the global legacy of Trump is a realignment of politics, with heartland conservatives switched on and centre-right parties around the world looking for blue collar voters. To what extent can this be said about Australia and can it explain what's happened this week in the ALP as the Shadow Cabinet dissolved into a brawl over climate versus coal?
This realignment in the USA brought populist policy change on trade, taxes and social security, but could anyone other than Trump have withstood enormous media pressure surrounding the Paris Climate Agreement, as well as getting through the deregulation and massive tax cuts that he did? Can we ever imitate this in Australia or is our political system too dissimilar to America’s? Did State LNP organisations blow themselves up chasing populist positions? What will the Biden administration look like for the future of the USA and the rest of the world?
Joining Scott and Chris in this week’s episode to discuss these riveting questions is IPA Director of Communications, Evan Mullholland.
Culture Picks this week include Chris’ Children of Ash and Elm by Neil Price about Vikings; Scott’s podcast, Noise Before Defeat by Senator Jim Molan about Australian national security; and Evan’s pick of the American, deep-state action-thriller series, Condor by Tom Katzberg, Ken Robinson and Jason Smilovic.
As the title says. Let’s look forward and discuss how COVID is being leveraged to introduce new or rehash concepts such as centralisation, Digital Currency, Digital Passport/identity, Vaccine Passport, Universal basic income , surveillance etc. Issues such as these are sticky and need to be discussed.
Please stop clicking your pens during recording.
I become a banshee watching most media. Bill’s mark of the beast is leading to me losing my mind, so scared. 20x profit on 10 billion investment, money talks. I need this discussed but no one wants to go there. At least it is being skirted around and gives me some piece of mind. Swine flu vaccine killed more than the disease.