Richard Cooke

Richard Cooke
Richard Cooke is The Monthlys contributing editor. 

By this author

Hunting Canberra’s Loch Ness Monster

Australian Politics

Today we know that a petition ended the political career of Julia Gillard. But we don’t know if the petition ever really existed. Even when this mysterious document was still being circulated no MP would say they had actually seen or signed it, …

NSA surveillance


How the National Security Agency is undermining privacy and sovereignty

We Need to Fall Out of Love With Obama


It’s hard to imagine the current scandals wreathing the White House will do much to dim the glowing image of Barack Obama over here. The fact various administration officials targeted political opponents with tax probes, spied on journalists and …

But The Australian is Elitist, Too


David Flint must be kicking himself. Watching the debate started by Nick Cater’s book The Lucky Culture, among John Howard, Mark Latham, Janet Albrechtsen (and many, many more), he must have trouble shaking the feeling that he’s missed …

Not Craig Thomson


I’ve come to admire Craig Thomson. Like many people, I underestimated him at first, writing him off as an ordinary, flawed person in an extraordinary situation, frozen into an agonised pose by the carbonite of a hung parliament. But he’s not …

The Sport Doping Enquiry Isn’t Just Stupid - It’s Wrong


‘UNITE THE FIGHT AGAINST NATIONALLY SIGNIFICANT CRIME’. That’s the awkward, shouty slogan of the Australian Crime Commission, turning its attention to problems that, like the old line about the Holy Roman Empire, are not national, …

Illustration by Jeff Fisher.

Why I Am Not A Conservative (Any More)


Perhaps it’s another sign of the Triumph of Selfishism, but Margaret Thatcher’s death got me thinking about myself, and my own political development. It’s the Benjamin Button version: I started off as an undergraduate who believed in …

Whatever happened to Mamdouh Habib?

Guantanamo Bay

‘Who?’ That was the response when I mentioned that Mamdouh Habib had won the right to sue the NSW Police for racism. He failed the pub test not once, but several times, once yielding a ‘was he that cleric guy?’ Always in the shadow …

Is Graham Richardson psychic?


In the course of the Crean Immolation, there was only one commentator who finished the day of chaos with a perfect record of prediction. That man was Graham Richardson, Labor’s own Talleyrand minus the stocking. For the entire day, nearly everything …