Tag John Stapleton

Destroying A Nation: Part IX Unfolding Catastrophe

The onslaught of Covid incompetence came at a time when the nation itself was on rocky ground.  Those who would doubt Australia’s democracy were spread far and wide. Trapped in circumstance, Old Alex was reliving his own version of The… Continue Reading →

Shearers: The Photography of Russell Shakespeare

Award winning photographer Russell Shakespeare explains the obsession: I’ve photographed shearers a lot over the years for a number of different publications. They’re an important and easily understood symbol for one of Australia’s most important industries; and there is a… Continue Reading →

The Future History of Publishing

Since the beginning of literature technologies have shaped the written word. And thereby publishing technologies have shaped history, culture, politics and war. The adage history is written by the victors has transposed in this truly astonishing era into something else…. Continue Reading →

How To Destroy A Nation: Part VIII Unfolding Catastrophe

Old Alex was alive to the whole End of Days narrative for multiple reasons, including his own childhood. Having grown up in a Christian cult, members of his family were preparing for the end of the world way back in… Continue Reading →

Sleaze And Self-interest Everywhere: Australia 2021

Pearls and Irritations Who among us, eighteen months ago, could have believed the mess this country is now in? Few can doubt Australia is at a turning point in its history. The debacle is writ large. The current Cabinet reshuffle will please… Continue Reading →

The Burning Ghats of Varanasi: Photography by Russell Shakespeare

People crawl across India to die in Varanasi for one reason: according to the Hindu faith if you die there, on the edge of the sacred Ganges River, you will not be reincarnated. The cycle of life, and therefore of… Continue Reading →

A Ship of Fools: Unfolding Catastrophe Part VII

Very early on in the Covid drama the country’s commentators were straight out of the box slamming the government for mismanagement. There was no rallying behind the flag. From leading independent news site Crikey a story titled Ship of Fools: … Continue Reading →

It Could Not Have Been A More Wonderful Day

Terror in Australia: Workers’ Paradise Lost. Extract. As a young man Alex had taken every opportunity to travel. He stayed several times at a beach on Penang island known as Batu Ferringhi. In the 1970s it was little more than… Continue Reading →

Barrage: Unfolding Catastrophe Part VI

Alex’s barrage began with a story titled “Covid-19: Pundits Queue to Criticise the Prime Minister” and subtitled “Australia’s Collapsing Democracy: A Deficit of Trust”. OK, warming up.  “Experts have long warned that with the extremely poor quality of government which… Continue Reading →

Sequestered: Unfolding Catastrophe Part V

There was a torrent on the water surface but Old Alex was hidden in the deep matting on the bottom of the sea. That’s the way it felt.  There was a tumultuous effect. There was a spiritual component. There were… Continue Reading →

The Laughing Lama

On Meeting a Buddhist Master “Spiritual truth is not something elaborate and esoteric, it is in fact profound common sense. When you realize the nature of mind, layers of confusion peel away. You don’t actually “become” a buddha, you simply cease,… Continue Reading →

The Hanging of Christian Porter

The devolved state of journalism at the $1.2 billion Australian Broadcasting Corporation is now on full display. The current witch hunt of the nation’s Attorney General over entirely unsubstantiated claims of an alleged rape 33 years ago, when he was… Continue Reading →

Murder On Lower Fort Street: Best of the Archives

With Photography by Tim Ritchie There is no more historic, more superbly located or visually rich part of Sydney than The Rocks. Tucked in under the southern flank of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, from the earliest days of the colony it… Continue Reading →

The Palace of Lies Abolished

A dark stain on the nation’s legal, social and political history is finally being removed.  Known colloquially as the Palace of Lies, the Family Court of Australia was established in the mid-1970s, at the height of the “all men are… Continue Reading →

Dark Seas: Best of the Archives.

Extract: Hideout in the Apocalypse The spooks were easy to spot. Most Australians couldn’t afford a new iPhone, and certainly not in that part of town. Old Alex felt decidedly unsafe, packed up the apartment, both glad to be out… Continue Reading →

Scott Morrison: The Elephant In The Room. Best of the Archives.

The single most fascinating thing about Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison is: He Shows No Guilt. Not a shred of remorse at having thrown millions of people onto welfare thanks to his absurd misreading of the Covid Scare. Not for… Continue Reading →

The Daughter of Siberian Shamans: Best of the Archives

Yakutsk is the coldest place on Earth. Winter temperatures plunge below minus 50 degrees Centigrade. The town of Oymyakom, in the East Siberian Depression, has recorded temperatures well below of minus 60. The indigenous tribes of this most hostile of… Continue Reading →

Scott Morrison Leaves Australia In Flames

An Extract from Dark Dark Policing. Featuring the Photography of Dean Sewell. There is an encyclopedic array of scandals swarming around Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison, with journalists already forming a queue to label this the most corrupt government in… Continue Reading →

Nothing More Permanent Than A Temporary Measure

Part IV Unfolding Catastrophe Already by the Australian autumn of 2020, following straight on from a Christmas of bush fires and extreme loss, the warning signs should have been entirely clear to anyone who cared to look.  An uneducated public… Continue Reading →

And So Much More

Unfolding Catastrophe: Part III. Early in the “pandemic”, or “plandemic” as sceptics were already calling it, both mainstream and independent commentators queued to attack Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison, whose mishandling of Covid-19 was likely to be derided by historians… Continue Reading →

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