Don Watson


47 ENTRIES Don Watson is an award-winning author and former speechwriter for Paul Keating. His books include Death Sentence: The Decay of Public Language, Recollections of a Bleeding Heart: A Portrait of Paul Keating PMAmerican JourneysThe Bush, the Quarterly Essay ‘Enemy Within: American Politics in the Time of Trump’ and There It Is Again, a collection of his writing.



These divided states of America

Americans are split along party lines as never before



Living within our platitudes

Whatever the politicians say, we can't afford to skimp on education


Turnbull’s rightful place

The prime minister does not seem to be himself at all


The new normal

A welcome to Turnbull and a farewell to slogans


Method in the madness

Tony Abbott’s surprises keep coming


Lost for words

Our politicians have paltry ideas and express them poorly


Australian Politics

Whitlam’s ghost

Remembering Gough Whitlam puts modern Labor to shame

Andrew Bolt and Tony Abbott. © Jason Edwards / Newspix

Federal politics

The conservative crusade against the ABC

Why do Andrew Bolt and company love to hate the national broadcaster?

History Wars

Lest we go over the top

How should we remember World War One?

Prime ministers

Tony Abbott apologises

The prime minister is sorry about everything


The all-purpose election victory speech

Thank you, thank you, thank you, no, really, please, thank you. A short time ago, my opponent called me to offer his congratulations. He’s a good bloke, whatever his colleagues might say. I thank him and I thank Australia, and the people of Australia. …


In praise of Tony Windsor

Fan mail for the former MP

Illustration by Jeff Fisher.


The Kings and I

Horse racing’s inegalitarian streak

Illustration by Jeff Fisher.

Tertiary education

Comment: A New Dusk

In 1967, when La Trobe University was brand new and underpopulated, John O’Brien, an Irish historian with a wild and feverish laugh, told us about the enemy within. It was not for anything the administration had done, or any of the horrid things that …

George Pell, Anzac service, 24 April 2009. © AAP/Jenny Evans

Richard Dawkins

A New Opium

The Anzac cult