“All men should strive to learn before they die, what they are running from, and to, and why.” – James Thurber

About Julian Burnside

Julian Burnside AO QC is an Australian barrister who practises principally in commercial litigation, trade practices and administrative law. He is also a human rights and refugee advocate, and author.

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Is it detention or jail?

I received an email today from a person who is held in immigration detention.  The email read, in part: We are told over and over again, from the moment we arrive that this is not a jail or prison and the Serco personnel are not guards. At 7:45 this morning I was... read more

PNG Navy shoots refugees on Manus

Here is a very powerful message I received by email from an Australian citizen:  … This is beyond the pale. My husband, [xxx], used to bleakly joke about how Australia’s Immigration Department really just should shoot all the boat people and get it over... read more

Wilson Parking: hopeless

What sort of operation is Wilson Parking running?  How hard can it be to run a  car park?  Apparently it is much to hard for the geniuses who run Wilson Parking. For almost a decade I have had a permanent car park at a site run by Wilson Parking.  In February 2017,... read more

Climate Change

Climate change denial is on the rise, encouraged no doubt by the example of that great intellectual President Donald Trump.  That other intellectual giant Andrew Bolt had a crack at me recently for what I thought was the modest suggestion that we need to listen to... read more

George Brandis QC A-G

Q&A on Monday 20 February 2017 included Attorney-General George Brandis QC. Brandis showed rather unhappy aspects of himself, as he sought to justify enormous and extravagant expense allowances for Federal parliamentarians while justifying the meanness of NDIS... read more

The Apology, 9 years on

On 13 February 2008, Kevin Rudd apologised to the stolen generations.  It was not great rhetoric, but it was a fine moment, because (for once) we heard a Federal Politician who sounded sincere. 9 years later, here is a message from Liberty Victoria: Yesterday marked... read more

The dodgy US refugee deal

When the agreement with the US was announced, the details were so meagre that it was hard to place much reliance on it. Then Donald Trump was elected President of the USA and the deal looked even more speculative. But now the realities of it are becoming apparent: it... read more

Climate change

I gave a speech for 350.org.au just recently.  Here is the substance of what I said. And before you read it (because it’s a bit depressing) cheer yourself up with First Dog on The Moon’s recent excoriation of our “Leader” Malcolm Turnbull on... read more

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Asylum Seekers

Julian on Twitter

Immigration detention: administrative detention, or punishment of people we don't like. Judge for yourself: julianburnside.com.au/is-it-detentio…

I suppose do-badders would be better? The people who put us at risk are the ones who stir up hatred of Muslims, ra… twitter.com/i/web/status/8…

@JulianBurnside But Dutton doesn't adhere to those values! Retweeted by Julian Burnside

Wow! #Dutton says 'best outcome' for Australians fighting in Syria is to get 'killed over there' sbs.com.au/news/article/2…

Unbelievable (even for the USA). A new strategy for getting elected - punch & assault a reporter. Hope it doesn't c… twitter.com/i/web/status/8… Retweeted by Julian Burnside

BREAKING: Dutton would be critical of most media organisations: source. "But the ABC is the only one he can spell",… twitter.com/i/web/status/8… Retweeted by Julian Burnside

If Pauline Hanson actually listened to ASIO's Duncan Lewis, she might have to abandon some of her bigoted ideas twitter.com/lukehgomes/sta…

This is really worth watching, especially as the Chair (LNP) steps in to help Hanson twitter.com/nobby15/status…

And his bad manners are just the start of the problem... twitter.com/TaodeHaas/stat…

Save Queen Victoria Market from being tarted up by well-meaning but misguided Council action. Sign the e-petition: parliament.vic.gov.au/council/petiti…

Could you live on the same food rations as a refugee? abc.net.au/news/2017-05-2… This Adelaide couple are trying it

Dutton says all Asylum Seekers must complete Form 866 by 1 Oct. Look at its "Statement of Australian Values" julianburnside.com.au/form-866-and-a…

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