November 2011

September 2011

August 2011

Searching for transparent online competition

by Josh Fear in ABC The Drum

We’ve heard a lot recently about how the internet is changing the retail landscape. Despite the extreme lethargy with which many of Australia’s largest bricks-and-mortar retailers have embraced online opportunities, consumers are increasingly turning to the web to find more products at lower prices, and without needing to go anywhere near a Westfield. What hasn’t

Who has power over the internet?

by Josh Fear in On Line Opinion

In 1922 Herbert Hoover, United States Secretary of Commerce, declared at the first National Radio Conference in Washington, D.C: “It is inconceivable that we should allow so great a possibility for service, for news, for entertainment, for education, and for vital commercial purposes to be drowned in advertising chatter.” By the time Hoover became President

February 2011

Owning an ATM is money in the bank

by Josh Fear in The Punch

Each and every day millions of Australians pay financial institutions to access their own money. Some pay more while others pay less, depending on the way they do it. Sometimes, as with EFTPOS transactions, the price consumers pay for their own money is largely invisible, being factored into the prices of goods and services. In

January 2011

August 2010

Money and Power

by Josh Fear in On Line Opinion

Despite the prosaic origins of our constitution, many of us still treasure the right to vote. We might feel we have little influence over government decision-making, but at least we get a chance to pronounce judgement every three years. Except that we don’t – not like we used to. Because in this election, the voice

March 2010

Redressing the balance for members

by Josh Fear in The Australian Financial Review

A lot of people in the superannuation industry are very worried at the moment. This is not because they see another market crash on the horizon; things are generally back on track in that sense. They’re worried because things are about to get much better for millions of ordinary working Australians at the expense of

November 2009

October 2009

Super slick

by Josh Fear in ABC The Drum

Most of us like to complain about the banks from time to time, but compared to some parts of the superannuation industry the banks seem like the good guys. That’s because many commercial super funds are profiting enormously through excessive fees on the savings of ordinary workers.

September 2009

July 2009

Selfless winds of change

by Josh Fear in Sydney Ideas Quarterly

the ‘cap-and-slice’ proposal actually resembles the public’s perception of how emissions trading works more closely than the CPRS. Three-quarters of respondents to a recent Australia Institute survey said that Australia’s total emissions would go down if every household reduced its electricity use. Only 13 per cent gave the answer that corresponds to the CPRS: that

February 2009

January 2009

Sloppy super

by Josh Fear in The Australian

Debates about superannuation policy are often ideological in tone.People in finance and investment circles tend to forget that the majority of Australians are profoundly disengaged from their super, at least until they approach retirement. The super system is so complicated that many workers take the simplest option – doing nothing. Governments therefore have a responsibility

Reclaiming your time from telemarketers

by Josh Fear in Analysis & Policy Observatory

Telemarketing is one form of ‘direct marketing’, along with junk mail, spam and face-to-face marketing. Direct marketing differs from ‘traditional’ advertising in making a much stronger claim on our attention. Members of the public have to take deliberate action if they wish to avoid direct marketing, but Institute research indicates that an ‘opt-in’ system would

June 2008

Credit reform needs to go back to basics

by Josh Fear in ABC The Drum

Recent research by the Australia Institute reveals the extent of community mistrust of the financial sector. Indeed, a large majority of adult Australians hold banks and other financial institutions responsible for the current debt crisis. Although many people believe that personal responsibility in financial decision making is important, there is broad consensus that the banking

May 2008

A borrower nor a lender be

Australia’s love affair with easy credit has turned on itself. The price of credit has reached its highest point in 14 years, and home buyers are feeling the economic pain associated with higher interest rates. The corporate sector has tended to blame individuals for taking on more debt than they can handle, drawing on the

March 2008

Duty of MPs to stay full term

by Josh Fear in The Canberra Times

But is it acceptable for former government members to leave early purely because they have lost government? At the least, there should be recognition of the shirking of responsibility that this entails. There should also be some contribution towards the considerable costs of holding by-elections. Representing one’s constituency for the duration of the parliament is

February 2008

October 2007

The Apprentice Dog Whistler

by Josh Fear in Crikey

Over recent months, Minister Kevin Andrews has been bringing the new Australian Citizenship Test to fruition. This is a policy destined to fail utterly in its stated intention – “to help new citizens to embrace education, employment and other opportunities in Australia”, according to the Government – but succeed in sending a message to voters

General Enquiries

Tanya Martin Office Manager

02 6130 0530

Media Enquiries

Jake Wishart Senior Media Adviser

0413 208 134

RSS Feed

All news