“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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Climate change

I gave a speech for 350.org.au I have long considered climate change the principal issue facing the world.  It is a first-order issue.  Refugees are a second-order issue.  Here is the speech I gave: Climate change is the single biggest issue facing the world today.... read more

More on anti-Islamic rants

As mentioned before, a person who lives in Australia emails me regularly (at least a couple of times a week) ranting about Muslims. He is clearly having an unhappy, insecure life.  Some part of me feels sorry for him.  But my pity for him is dimmed when he advocates:... read more

Dishonest Dutton: at it again

The following news item appeared in The Australian on 21 November 2016, under the caption ‘I won’t be bullied’ (if you follow the link, you have to scroll down for the piece): Immigration Minister Peter Dutton has crossed swords with Bill Shorten in a fiery question... read more

Big Deal

Australia has announced an agreement with the US in relation to refugees presently held on Nauru and Manus.  In announcing the agreement, Prime Minister Turnbull and Immigration Minister Dutton were careful to avoid giving any significant detail of the arrangement. ... read more

News from Manus

I have just received another report from Manus.  Here it is, in edited form to preserve the anonymity of people involved: “In addition to declining mental health-we had an attempted suicide by hanging in October-a number of refugees suffering from serious... read more

Oppose Lifetime Visa Ban

Here is my submission to the Senate enquiry on the MIGRATION Legislation AMENDMENT (Regional processing cohort) BILL 2016 The Bill relevantly inserts sub-section 46A(2AA) The effect of that provision is to “prevent unauthorised maritime arrivals (UMAs) who were at... read more

Anti-Islamic rants

A person who lives in Australia emails me regularly (at least a couple of times a week) ranting about Muslims. He is clearly having an unhappy, insecure life.  Some part of me feels sorry for him.  But my pity for him is dimmed when he advocates: banning all Muslims... read more

A Grim Report from MITA

Melbourne Immigration Transit Accomodation at Broadmeadows (MITA) was the scene of another degrading episode. Border Force was living down to its reputation if thereport is even partly true.  (Note: since this was first posted, the story was covered on 7 November 2016... read more

More news from Manus

A colleague has recently given me an update about things on Manus.  Note in particular that Australia is not the attraction: they just want safety and certainty.  Instead we mistreat them and grind them into despair.  We are crushing them.  Is this really what we want... read more

What Would You Do?

Politicians repeatedly urge us to hate, and punish, and mistreat people who come here as boat people.  Their anti-boat-people policies and laws are said to be justified as a deterrent, so that people will not risk drowning. Let’s test that. Imagine for a moment... read more

Petition for a Bill of Rights in NSW

The Newtown Amnesty International Action Group has put up a petition for a Bill of Rights in NSW: nsw-bill-of-rights-petition Victoria has a Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities.  The sky has not fallen in. The ACT has a Human Rights Act.  The sky has not... read more

Human Rights & Social Justice

The Arts

Art, music and theatre

Asylum Seekers

Julian on Twitter

Peter Dutton's investment portfolio expands smh.com.au/federal-politi… Over $5m in negative geared property. Not bad for an ex-cop

Is it true Peter Dutton has over $5m in negatively geared properties? He needs to come clean and tell us. smh.com.au/federal-politi…

Perhaps, but look how easy it was to demonize the C tax. Two-thirds o think reef crisis is 'national emergency' theguardian.com/environment/20… Retweeted by Julian Burnside

Aged care worker Deborah: She's fighting against ridiculous 1-hour shifts, where she can be called in THREE TIMES i… twitter.com/i/web/status/8… Retweeted by Julian Burnside

Dirty laundry: washing line art highlights South Africa's rape epidemic trib.al/ONE6fvw Retweeted by Julian Burnside

Actions in support of people seeking asylum happening at 2pm this Saturday at locations around the country.… twitter.com/i/web/status/8… Retweeted by Julian Burnside

Populist but unclear what comes next. Should we even go there? Historians on comparing fascism to Trumpism theguardian.com/us-news/2016/d… Retweeted by Julian Burnside

On 2 December 2005 Van Nguyen, an Australian citizen, was executed in Singapore. Lex Lasry and Julian McMahon fought valiantly to save him

Brenda the Civil Disobedience Penguin's 10-point plan to drain the swamp! - First Dog theguardian.com/commentisfree/… Good ideas: pls read & RT

Simple questions: -did you read my speech? -do you think climate change is a problem we need to deal with? twitter.com/omgthemess/sta…


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