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Latest commentary and opinion

Punishment, not reward, awaits the honest politician

Daniel Flitton

DANIEL FLITTON Politicians rank between door-to-door spruikers and insurance salespeople as a profession inspiring trust. Maybe this reputation is deserved, the mounting cost of deliberate obfuscation, spin and outright lies. But part of the real reason politicians are regarded so poorly must be because honesty so rarely brings reward.

Comments 45

Forget mining, big cities are the real engine in nation's economy

Ross Gittins dinkus

ROSS GITTINS 12:15am Old notions die hard. If you took all the production of goods and services in Australia and plotted on a map where that production took place, what would it look like?


There is a way forward once the Gaza fighting stops

An Israeli soldier

Jackson Diehl All sides should embrace the option that was on the table before the attacks started.


The dying art of voicemail

smart phone

Alexandra Petri 12:15am A phone is not for making calls. Phones are devices that you use to avoid talking to people.


Don't ban Putin from the G20 summit

Michael Wesley

Michael Wesley Pressuring and isolating Russia could work against our interests, by breeding defiance rather than compliance.


Tony Abbott's pitch for UN support over MH17 a smart move


DANIEL FLITTON 12:15am The Prime Minister has shown leadership and helped shape a global response.


Brandis legislates to trample on our freedoms


Greg Barns 12:15am The Attorney-General's national security laws show we desperately need greater human rights protection.


Time has come for Australia to step up

Michael Fullilove dinkus

Michael Fullilove 12:15am Australians feel deep sorrow and righteous anger at the shooting down of MH17, a despicable act that has caused the largest single loss of Australian life overseas since the 2002 Bali bombing.

Comments 4

In the Herald: July 23, 1938


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Brian Yatman 12:00am King unveils memorial, a vision in antelope and at the pictures.

Collateral damage in a war without winners


JACK WATERFORD 8:29pm When American sailors making split-second decisions about an aircraft which seemed to be attacking them fired a missile and brought it down, a subsequent searching  US Defense Department investigation spoke of "scenario fulfillment" causing the fatal misjudgment.

Lance Franklin: You Buddy beauty for the Sydney Swans

Lance Franklin.

SAM DE BRITO 7:20pm Listen closely, you might hear the humble pie falling from the lips of naysayers who criticised the Swans recruitment of Buddy Franklin.

Comments 46

The idiot dad's guide to better childcare

Alan Stokes dinkus

ALAN STOKES 5:11am Let's go back to childcare kindy to learn what you REALLY think about plans for subsidised nannies, paying grannies and tougher means tests.


Asia today echoes divided Europe of 1914

Hugh White dinkus

HUGH WHITE Have we learnt anything from the mistakes of the past? Perhaps not, as modern Asia shows signs of falling into the same traps that triggered World War I.

Comments 20

Passengers die as Putin fans flames of conflict

Illustration: Andrew Dyson

Boris Johnson Russia’s response to the destruction of a civilian airline stands in stark contrast to America’s when it too shot down a passenger plane.

Comments 97

MH17: why planes and financial systems crash


PETER MARTIN Airlines and fund managers have been known to bet that the unlikely won't happen.

Comments 4

MH17 deaths another reason to leave European Bank for Reconstruction and Development


PETER REITH The murder of thirty seven Australians is yet another reason for the Australian government to exit the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) which is funding the murderous Russian regime.

Comments 20

MH17 not part of obsessed Putin's 'Eurasia' plan

Peter Hartcher dinkus

PETER HARTCHER Tony Abbott was exactly right to hold Vladimir Putin responsible for the destruction of MH17, but the Russian leader didn’t want the mass murder of international innocents to happen.

Comments 117

In the Herald: July 22, 1863


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Brian Yatman "Will you kindly permit me to point out an inaccuracy which has crept into an otherwise correct report contained in this morning’s Herald."

Does practice make perfect? The evidence suggests it might


Dan McLaughlin At the age of 30, I quit my day job as a photographer to test the 10,000 Hour Rule – Dr K. Anders Ericsson’s theory that it takes 10,000 hours of deliberate practice to become an over-achiever in any specific field.

Comments 3

Who can you trust? Financial reforms turn back the clock


NICHOLAS STUART What was not to like? It was many years ago and I'd just returned from studying in England. I was waiting to hear whether my application to join the ABC as a cadet journalist had been successful when, browsing through the paper one day, my eye fell upon the advertisement.

A city honours the dead


JENNA PRICE The streets of Melbourne are scattered with flowers. They are on bridges and again on the footpaths. It is a city honouring the dead.

When it comes to entertaining our kids, less is really more

Are we stifling our kids' creativity by showering them with too many toys?

The recent mid-year toy sales have resulted in a variety of toy catalogues finding their way into our letterbox. My children have been poring over the catalogues for weeks, circling toys they dream of having, and making copious lists for upcoming birthdays.

Comments 4

The myth of the crisis in Australian politics

Tony Abbott, left, and Australian opposition leader Bill Shorten.

Paul Strangio That the nation has entered a winter of political discontent is a notion so commonplace in contemporary Australia as to have acquired truism status.

Comments 69

Fixing the world's problems begins in your kitchen

Bill Pritchard dinkus

Bill Pritchard Take a look at your fridge. If it’s like those of many Australians, too many of its contents exist in situational limbo between being bought, semi-consumed, and then, some days, weeks or months later, discarded.

Comments 3

Why do we want to tear down Rolf Harris’ artworks?

Veteran entertainer Rolf Harris leaves the Southwark Crown Court in London.

AMANDA VANSTONE As a child, I loved watching the Rolf Harris show. There was a mystery unfolding as he made strange marks in odd places on an enormous canvas. The  subject matter was only revealed towards the end.

Comments 162

State Labor is the party of reform

Jamie Clements dinkus

Jamie Clements It has been a tough few years for NSW Labor. Since our crushing defeat in 2011, the party has undertaken painful but necessary soul-searching, leading to significant reforms of our structures, our cultures and our policies.

Comments 20

As the West declines, a bellicose Russia rises

Russia's President Vladimir Putin.

Janet Daley There must be some politicians who have an idea how to get a grip on the chaos.

Comments 26

Hamas' rocket attacks provoked Israel's ground offensive into Gaza Strip

Sharyn Mittelman dinkus

Sharyn Mittelman Israel is currently under attack as Hamas and other jihadist groups have fired more than 1600 rockets into its territory this month. The rockets have sent millions of Israeli citizens – Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze – sprinting into bomb shelters.

Time for Ukraine to divide

Fairfax Media writer

PAUL SHEEHAN Ukraine, as we know it, is dead.  The country is irrevocably broken into two by ethnicity, language, geography and now blood. The sooner the people of the Ukraine accept this, and the European Community, the Russians and the Americans accept this, the sooner the nation can divide into its two natural parts and move on.

Comments 179

In the Herald: July 21, 1962


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Brian Yatman Deliberate use of English, the Benaud brand and straw that broke the camel's back.

Letters to the editor

Readers comment on the burning issues of the day.


The voice of The Canberra Times.

David Pope

Cartoons from The Canberra Times editorial artist.

Pat Campbell

A selection of published work from The Canberra Times artist.

Jack Waterford

Jack Waterford is Editor-at-large, The Canberra Times