Jack Waterford

Jack Waterford

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

Federation a tussle about power, not principles

Jack Waterford Tony Abbott has some right to feel disappointed by a lack of enthusiasm for reshaping the federation for the 21st century.

Gough Whitlam changed lives, mostly for the better

Jack Waterford Gough Whitlam was the Australian prime minister whose ability to create create a fresh enthusiasm for ideals, sacrifice and social improvement became one of the reasons his legend is still so...

Whitlam: He was lordly and haughty, mean and petty, magnificent and extraordinarily generous

Gough Whitlam

Jack Waterford One of the occasional humiliations of working as a reporter for The Canberra Times during the Whitlam years arose from the fact that Canberra did not have self-government, and that many matters of...

Joh Bjelke-Petersen, Clive Palmer play politics by different rules


Jack Waterford With Joh Bjelke-Petersen, it was sometimes called "Queenslandism" – the struggle to protect the poor people of Queensland from "the alien and stagnating, centralist, socialist,...

Why I won't play for team Australia


Jack Waterford I don't want to play for team Australia, or for team Abbott. And I wouldn't encourage my children to, either.

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Corruption's stench pervades both sides of politics


Jack Waterford It's a mess that has, so far, enveloped only state ministers, but can it be long before the whiff is discernible in Canberra? Asks Jack Waterford.

We didn't burn the Australian film industry


Jack Waterford I not not think that there is any ad which leaves me as unmoved as the that accusing people who watch pirate movies of burning up the Australian film industry.

Public servants should not lightly surrender policy pre-eminence

Jack Waterford Today, by contrast, the direct access of public servants, even at the most senior levels, to ministers is quite restricted.

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Was Arthur Sinodinos saved by his minders?

Jack Waterford The NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption inquiry that has enmeshed Liberal minister Arthur Sinodinos may be a turning point in fighting the entrenched bipartisan business of corrupt crony...

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Adrift in a sea of Tory blue

Jack Waterford The republic of the Australian Capital Territory may well be a red island in the middle of a sea of blue monarchies on Sunday, but, for Tony Abbott and Bill Shorten, navigation is not going to get...

Political leaders dilute their power when they try to manage, control and strait-jacket their followers

Jack Waterford Micromanagement has its own inexorable corrective and - if recent Australian history is any guide - a fairly fatal one. So why are political leaders so attracted to the practice?

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Qantas encounters turbulence as it flies its flag into big storm

Jack Waterford It's by no means clear what government can or should do for a Qantas, or any corporations iconic or not, in its position.

Six months on, it's time Labor got off the floor

Jack Waterford Six months on, Shorten shows no strategy, won't defend Labor's record and offers no alternative vision.

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Practised in the arts of deception

Jack Waterford Robert Armstrong, secretary of the British cabinet, famously called it being ''economical with the truth''.

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Abbott has little to gain at a byelection for six Senate seats

Jack Waterford Abbott has little to gain at a by-election for six Senate seats - but fighting it could badly affect his momentum.

Joe Hockey holds fast for now

Joe Hockey.

Jack Waterford The Treasurer is taking personal responsibility for a crusade his own side - and leader - may not let him win

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David Eastman case suffocated by jurisdiction challenges


Jack Waterford Four more lawyers, led by senior counsel, Ian Freckelton, joined the bar tables yesterday at the inquiry into doubts about whether David Eastman was rightly convicted of the 1989 murder of Assistant...

Poking a stick in hornet's nest stirs up Indonesian relations

Immigration minister Scott Morrison

Jack Waterford Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has virtually declared victory in recent days.

Barry O'Farrell's belly put to torch by moral panic

Jack Waterford One of the tests of character of the modern politician is how well they stand up to moral panics.

Jack Waterford: Hockey is set to wield the knife


Jack Waterford Most notable in the economic statement was the Coalition abandoning the majority of its old prescripts.