US magazine Truthout picks Disaster Capitalism and extracts its introduction

US magazine Truthout has picked my book Disaster Capitalism: Making A Killing Out Of Catastrophe… as its “Progressive Pick” (AKA book of the moment). Here’s an extract from the introductory chapter: “Sometimes we win the skirmishes, but the war continues.” — Rebecca Solnit, 2011 Back in 1972 Jørgen Randers, today the professor of climate strategy at…

Al Jazeera America interview on Sydney siege part 1

This week’s horrific terrorist attack in Sydney, a crazed self-styled cleric held people hostage in the Lindt cafe in central Sydney killing three people including the gunman, has shocked the country and generated global headlines. Too much of the media coverage was exploitative and sensational, framing the event as led or even inspired by ISIS.…

Defending the rights of whistle-blowers in our age

My weekly Guardian column: Freedom is difficult to resuscitate once extinguished. Australian attorney-general George Brandis recently chastised journalists for criticising his government’s new laws aimed at preventing reporting about “special intelligence operations”. Because he’s a culture warrior brawler, Brandis damned the “usual suspects of the paranoid, fantasist left” but also “reputable conservative commentators” for questioning…

How Australia is importing Tea Party style politics

My weekly Guardian column: It’s the swaggering and unthinking bravado that hits you. Australian prime minister Tony Abbott threatens to “shirtfront” Russian leader Vladimir Putin when he arrives in Australia for the G20. Moscow responds via Pravda by comparing Abbott to Pol Pot and Hitler. Australian senator Jacqui Lambie then praises Putin as a “strong…

Inside the mind of ISIS

I’m currently in America, investigating disaster capitalism in privatised immigration detention for my 2015 Verso book. I’ve been watching a lot of cable TV (lord knows why but I’m a masochist) and it’s been ISIS day and night (apart from mostly awful coverage of the killing of Michael Brown and white blindness on racism). Fox…

Public talk on From Iraq to Gaza: The Politics of Fear

Last Friday I gave the following speech at Sydney’s… Lebanese Muslim Association forum on terrorism, Gaza, ISIS and Western governments spreading fear and anger towards the Islamic faith. Labor MP Tony Burke and Liberal MP Craig Laundy both pledged to bring harmony to the community and yet both their parties have flamed bigotry. Government surveillance is…