Opinion | Comment & Analysis | The Age

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Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Ukraine on the brink of war can still be saved

Even Vladimir Putin would understand if faced with a united West that he would only lose in the long term by invading Ukraine. Now is the time for smart diplomacy.

  • The Age's View


Scott Morrison

The PM’s apology that was not an apology

Scott Morrison’s press conference showed classic blame-shifting, something voters have seen time and again in this pandemic.

  • by David Crowe
Border protections will disappear presenting challenges for iron ore producers
Iron ore

Bracing for impact: WA iron ore miners await spread of Omicron

Large iron ore companies including BHP and Rio have had a small taste of the impact the virus has had on operations - the full impact is soon to come.

  • by Elizabeth Knight
Biden Capitol homepage image

With his presidency in the balance, Biden must switch on Truman show

After a year in the White House, Joe Biden’s presidential agenda has stalled and America’s democracy continues to fray. So, how does he regain control and guide the country back from the brink?

  • by Bruce Wolpe
Nick Kyrgios acting every bit the showman against Liam Broady in his round one match.

Nick Kyrgios isn’t a tennis brat – he’s an Australian sport hero

Brash, audacious,playful: Kyrgios’s refusal to take the sport too seriously is not disrespecting the game. In fact, the opposite is true.

  • by Duncan Fine
Please Explain with Jess Irvine

What does 2022 hold in store for climate action?

Today on Please Explain, national climate and environment editor Nick O’Malley joins Jess Irvine to discuss the outlook for climate action this year.

  • by Jessica Irvine
Nursing Coordinator Mel Hyde at Monash Health in Clayton. Hospitals are at breaking point. The state government is considering desperate measures to allow COVID-positive healthcare workers to come into work if they are asymptomatic.

Photograph by Paul Jeffers
The Age NEWS
14 Jan 2022

Code brown emergency forces exhausted hospital staff back to work

Presentation numbers are up, staff numbers are down. There is no cavalry to come to the rescue; there are no benched players waiting to be tapped onto the court.

  • by Roderick McRae and Gavin Wayne
Crash Bandicoot is one of many classic franchises that will be owned by Microsoft after the acquisition.
Video games

Microsoft’s historic $96b deal comes with a lot of games - and a spotty reputation

Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, Crash Bandicoot and more will soon be under the Xbox umbrella, along with Activision Blizzard’s tarnished reputation.

  • by Tim Biggs
Having lost China as a customer the Australian coal producers scrambled to find new customers. Buyers in Japan, India, the EU and South Korea, presented with high-quality coal at bargain prices, grabbed the opportunity.

What BHP’s big move home means for the Australian sharemarket

After two decades, BHP’s experiment with a complicated corporate structure is about to end, injecting more volatility and some extra risk into the Australian sharemarket.

  • by Stephen Bartholomeusz
The transport sector is Australia’s third-largest source of greenhouse gases, producing 17.5 per cent of emissions.

The electric car bubble will burst - and that’s a good thing

The two things we know for sure about the market for electric vehicles is that it is booming, and also that it is getting very, very crowded. In truth, it is about to turn into a bloodbath.

  • by Matthew Lynn
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese.

Our leaders are talking small, but they still need to think big

Scott Morrison and Anthony Albanese have both outlined small targets in the lead-up to the election, but they will need hefty policy interventions to make them a reality.

  • by Julie Szego
Paul Keating campaigned against a GST in 1993, but was all for one when he was treasurer.

Why lefties need to learn to love the GST

If you think about it, the GST is far closer to a tax on profits, like the company tax.

  • by Steven Hamilton
Usman Khawaja and the victorious Australia team celebrate without booze.
The Ashes

Champagne gesture doesn’t mean Cricket Australia has solved its race problem

It was a positive step, but just the bare minimum that needs to be done to make Australian cricket more inclusive.

  • by Osman Faruqi
Illustration: Cathy Wilcox

ANTHONY ALBANESE: Memo, your aspirations must be fairness for all

Age readers react to recent comments by Labor leader Anthony Albanese.

2022: a year for good economic health

It should be a consumer-led period of growth, with a big stockpile of savings accumulated during pandemic lockdowns being spent on goods and services as people’s appetite to venture out re-emerges.

  • by Alex Joiner
Centrelink rules only allow gifts of $10,000 in any financial year.

Understanding the pension system 101

The age pension system remains complex and many people find it hard to work their way through the labyrinth of regulations.

  • by Noel Whittaker
Used cars are attracting high prices.

NPP makes it more secure to sell your used car

The benefit of using NPP is if the used car buyer has their banking app on their phone or other device, they can turn up to the seller and transfer the funds at the point of sale. The seller can then check and see that the money has landed in their account.

  • by Emily Chantiri
In 2013, Netflix introduced the binge model of viewing and changed the way we consume TV series but we’re seeing a return to the weekly release.

Time to cast off satellite TV and save money

Switching from satellite TV to streaming services can save you up to $100 a month.

  • by Joel Gibson
Switching to your super funds’ cash option during the COVID-induced sell-off in early 2020 has proved costly

Knee-jerk switching of super fund investment options rarely pays off

Super fund cash investment options returned just 0.1 per cent during 2021 and 0.5 per cent in 2020, leaving those who switched to more conservative options in a bid to preserve their capital during the sharemarket meltdown of early 2020 out of pocket.

  • by John Collett
A majority of Australians support the move to deport Novak Djokovic, polling finds.

There are no winners in Djokovic debacle

The bumbling of the Victorian government, the federal government, Border Force and Tennis Australia may be separated by degrees, but none has emerged untainted.

  • The Age's View
Andy Murray roars after defeating Nikoloz Basilashvili.

‘It’s amazing to be back’: Australian Open better for Murray’s second coming

The last rites were read over Andy Murray’s career at Melbourne Park three years ago. On Tuesday, this Lazarus rose again.

  • by Greg Baum
An electron microscope image of the SARS-CoV-2 omicron variant of the coronavirus.

Omicron: a deep dive into the data

The science on Omicron is starting to settle, so what does it reveal about the new dominant strain’s infectiousness, mortality and vaccine resistance.

  • by Liam Mannix
Buffy creator Joss Whedon.

Slayed: Joss Whedon gives a masterclass in how not to say sorry

The Buffy creator has broken his silence on allegations by actors of threats and cruelty – but maybe he should have just stayed quiet.

  • by Alice Clarke

I was scared to watch The Lost Daughter, but it’s made me feel sane

I, too, have done things I regret, out of the desperation that motherhood brings, and I’m still working back from them.

  • by Samantha Selinger-Morris
The one per cent margin: Novak Djokovic seeks an edge that will make him utterly differentiated.

The price of sacrifice: Obsessive drive costs Djokovic

In his hunt for stand-alone greatness, Novak Djokovic lost touch with others.

  • by Sally Jenkins
Clickbait perfection!

You’ll never guess the one shocking, devastating, vile habit I promise to quit this year

It’s not going to be easy. It’s going to be a daily struggle. Just yesterday I was sorely tempted.

  • by David Free
Public health worker walk past the ambulances parked in the emergency bay at St Vincent’s Hospital in Darlinghurst, Sydney on Jan 12, 2022. Generic of covid.  Photo: Flavio Brancaleone/The Sydney Morning Herald  Photo: Flavio Brancaleone/The Sydney Morning Herald

Workers have the right to say ‘no’ to unsafe work

Amid soaring staffing shortages, many workers are being pressured to resume work in circumstances that previously were considered highly likely to lead to transmission of the virus.

  • by Anthony Forsyth
Justin Langer is clinging onto his job ... but why?

Why are the drums still beating for Justin Langer?

The Australian coach vowed to change his approach and he did — so why do some people still want him sacked?

  • by Andrew Webster
Crown said it intends to accept the higher offer from Blackstone.

Crown game too rich for wounded Star

Had the Crown board been any less than welcoming to Blackstone, they would have been run out of town by shareholders wielding pitchforks and James Packer would have been at the head of the pack.

  • by Elizabeth Knight

Security of housing tenure key to determining pension amount

Home ownership is a key Centrelink consideration in determining a person’s capacity for self-support in retirement.

  • by Noel Whittaker
Please Explain co-host Nathanael Cooper.

What is the impact of the maritime heatwave?

Today on Please Explain, environment reporter Laura Chung joins Nathanael Cooper to look at rising ocean temperatures off Australia’s east coast.

  • by Nathanael Cooper
Dalio remains bullish on China but believes the US is headed for a decline.

China’s home-grown slowdown rings alarm bells for global economy

China’s slowing economy and declining birthrates are ominous signs for a world that has relied on it to drive much of its economic growth in the past decade.

  • by Stephen Bartholomeusz
Novak Djokovic left Australia on Sunday evening.

Bungling Australia unwittingly made a martyr of Novak Djokovic

The world No.1’s deportation has unleashed a furious backlash among players who claim the host nation’s image is now tarnished.

  • by Oliver Brown
Chris Silverwood, left, with Joe Root at a practice session.
The Ashes

‘Fat shaming’ and drinking: Inside England’s Ashes tour from hell

Poor planning, a lack of direction, and a player revolt all led to a “shambolic” series and England’s ultimate humiliation.

  • by Nick Hoult
Harry Styles, Pete Davidson, Machine Gun Kelly

The new ‘It’ boy is here, and he’s wearing dangly earrings and make-up

If the romantic choices of some of the world’s most desirable women are anything to go by, the new “It” boy isn’t a hyper-masculine Marvel superhero type.

  • by Natalie Reilly
Perth airport vaccine COVID-19 arrivals WA reopening. Picture: Supplied

Why is WA holding out on reopening with 88% vaccinated and Omicron already spreading?

An epidemiologist said the west would have already reached its “peak immunity” due to a vaccine’s efficacy waning over time, with opening now rather than in three weeks time making “little difference”. 

  • by Heather McNeill
Khawaja returns for the team photo.
The Ashes

Five burning questions following a one-sided Ashes series

We look at five key questions confronting Australian cricket after the team’s 4-0 Ashes triumph.

  • by Andrew Wu
Novak Djokovic may have argued his brush with COVID meant he did not need immediate vaccination, but don’t think that’s all you need to be protected.

Don’t believe the hype around Djokovic, catching COVID is no substitute for the jab

Recovery from COVID does not confer as much immunity as two vaccinations, and well below that of three.

  • by Sarah Palmer and Graeme Stewart
Fewer home buyers are making plans to enter the market.

Political rhetoric insufficient to help Aussies own their own home

While the upcoming election looks set to be long on rhetoric about the joys of home ownership, it is also looking decidedly short on policies of real substance to help more Australians attain their own home.

  • by Jessica Irvine
Former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull.

Turnbull had the right idea on China

Malcolm Turnbull has had his critics over the years – including this writer – but it’s now absolutely clear that Turnbull’s policy towards China was very much in Australia’s best interests.

  • by Tom Switzer
New polling shows the Coalition’s primary vote has fallen sharply since November

Summer of frustration has angered voters

Only a third of respondents now think the Morrison government will be returned at the next election compared with almost half in June, 2021.

  • The Age's View
New polling shows the Coalition’s primary vote has fallen sharply since November

Summer of frustration has angered voters

The latest Resolve Political Monitor shows the nation is gripped by a growing sense of pessimism, a bad sign for an incumbent federal government on the cusp of an election campaign.

  • The Herald's View
The nation goes into the third year of the pandemic with a clear line in the government’s fortunes.

Election race tightens after Morrison takes a summer battering

The nation goes into the third year of the pandemic with polling showing a clear line in the government’s fortunes as the election approaches.

  • by David Crowe
Cathy Wilcox

ARENAS OF LEADERSHIP: Champions in other fields of endeavour

Age readers give their views on the qualities of leadership.

Workplace exclusion generic shot

Why we need more ‘me’ time at work

The “always on” work culture was already a problem before the pandemic. Now it’s been exacerbated.

  • by Conor Sen
Novak Djokovic lost his court bid to remain in Australia.

Dear Novak, here’s why Australians are really glad you got the boot

Our Boofhead Tolerance Level is very low right now.

  • by Pete Shmigel
Consumers exercise their discretion to avoid shopping

COVID fear and supply famine join to decimate Kmart, Target’s earnings

Over December and January as physical stores reopened there emerged a new set of challenges - the scarcity of staff and an abundance of consumer fear.

  • by Elizabeth Knight
Consumers need confidence to go out and spend.

Declaring the economy ‘open’ isn’t enough to revive our economic fortunes

The pandemic has proven how consumers need more than just disposable income to go out and spend. They need certainty.

  • by Leonora Risse
Drifter will acquire NZ’s Haka Tourism Group and turn it into an Australia/New Zealand hybrid hotel network.

The Summer I ... moved to Melbourne without meaning to

Australia – a country known to me as a backdrop to hakas, Hadlee and Crocodile Dundee – suddenly became my home.

  • by Mathew Dunckley
In England, the government has not introduced any new measures. to curb the spread of Omicron.

No, you shouldn’t throw an Omicron party ...

A growing trend to contract COVID-19 at a “convenient” time has health officials worried.

  • by Rosa Silverman