AQ: Australian Quarterly - - A WORD - Grant Mills

Ex­cuse me for a mo­ment, I’d like to co-opt a re­cent Turn­bull-ism: It’s an ex­cit­ing time to be an Aus­tralian. I sus­pect that our PM and I would dis­agree on the rea­sons for this state­ment but hear me out. Yes, our po­lit­i­cal de­bate had be­come in­creas­ingly par­lous over the last 20 years; yes, trust and faith in gov­ern­ment have never been lower; yes, the over­ar­ch­ing eco­nomic trend from the top-down con­tin­ues to be tax-and-ser­vice-cuts-to-ben­e­fit-the-rich…

But I’d like to in­ject a touch of op­ti­mism. Around the coun­try the din of protest and gen­uine de­bate can be heard. It seems that no topic is pub­licly broached with­out the lens of in­equal­ity be­ing considered; com­mu­nity and in­dus­try-pres­sure con­tinue to frus­trate an­ti­quated en­ergy pol­icy; even some of our po­lit­i­cal par­ties are stick­ing their heads above the para­pet to op­pose changes that are not fu­ture-proof.

We may still have an en­trenched po­lit­i­cal cul­ture that re­wards in­ac­tion in favour of cheap pol­i­tick­ing, but there is a feel­ing that with enough peo­ple-power we can be an ac­tive check on the gov­ern­ment, and drag them kick­ing and scream­ing onto the right side of his­tory. Hope­fully this is a tip­ping-point we can look for­ward to.

Part of my rea­son­ing for this is that our last edi­tion on Post-cap­i­tal­ism was the most pop­u­lar AQ in re­cent mem­ory! So I’d like to thank and wel­come our new sub­scribers. To cel­e­brate this (and the ap­petite for de­bate on al­ter­na­tive fu­tures) I’ll make the full Post-cap­i­tal­ism edi­tion avail­able for free on the AQ web­site for any­one that hasn’t seen it yet. Feel free to share it with your friends.

In this new edi­tion we look beyond the hori­zon: what does the new Aus­tralian Space Agency mean for the coun­try; we chat with a No­bel lau­re­ate on how re­defin­ing busi­ness could save the world; and how we can change the law to en­able pa­tients to ben­e­fit from the grow­ing ev­i­dence base sup­port­ing med­i­cal mar­i­juana.

We also take stock of where we’ve come from, with an in­ter­ro­ga­tion of the ‘Com­pact City’ prin­ci­ples that have been an in­vis­i­ble hand shap­ing the places in which we live.

All this and more in the new AQ! Join the con­ver­sa­tion on Facebook and Twit­ter.


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