Australian Fabians Young Writers Competition – win a trip to London and an internship at Demos!

Overland readers might be interested in the opportunity below:


** Write an opinion piece **
** Get published in The Australian **
** Spend a month with the UK’s leading think tank **

What are the most important issues facing Australia today? What practical policy solutions do you have to address those problems? Can you convince people of your argument in 1,000 well-written words?

The Australian Fabians Young Writers Competition for the Race Mathews Award is open to all young political thinkers and activists in Australia aged 18 – 28. We want to hear your view on any policy issue relevant to Australia in 2009.

First prize is a return economy class airfare to London and a month-long internship at leading UK think tank Demos. A small living allowance will also be provided and the winning article will be published in The Australian newspaper.

Entries are due by Monday 14 December 2009

For more information and to enter visit

Jeff Sparrow

Jeff Sparrow is a Walkley Award-winning writer, broadcaster and former editor of Overland.

More by Jeff Sparrow ›

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  1. And here’s something a young Fabian might like to write about. Or an old one who edits a literary magazine. I am finished my researching my position on mandatory filtering of the internet. Are they screening for particular words or phrases (of particular interest to a poet), are they planning to use it in the war on terror (of particular interest to a left wing literary magazine), and so on. Any ideas you smart people have would be of use, but I know you are busy planning Christmas parties and so forth, so don’t worry about it too much. I’ll just wait til the Government tells me everything and take their word for it.

  2. Paul,
    Your passive-aggressive stuff is really starting to annoy me. If you want to talk about mandatory internet filtering, do so. What’s the point in being such a smart ass about it?

  3. Sounds like a great comp. Interesting that it will be published as an op ed piece in The Oz – I thought they kept most of this sort of stuff for the hall-of-paranoic-mirrors that is the Cut & Paste column 🙂

  4. I don’t want to talk about it Jeff. I want to hear what you have to say about it? And this passive-aggressive stuff, get over it. It’s an insult I’ve heard for thirty years and it is ad hominem.

  5. So let me get this straight: for thirty years people have asked not to be so passive aggressive and yet, rather than simply writing, ‘Hey, what d you think about mandatory internet filtering?’ (which would have been an invitation to a civil discussion), you post something implying that I’m too busy organising parties to take a position (ie a smart ass sneer).
    I wonder how the next thirty years will pan out for you.

  6. If you are a qualified psychologist or psychiatrist, you may make assertions about my personality disorder. But I do not think your degree qualifies you to analyse my psychology. It does however qualify you to discuss the implications of the mandatory filtering which you quite clearly do not want to do. Good bye, I will go find someone who does. Someone who response is not to insult me but who addresses the question.

  7. Seems a bit trivial, in this thread but I meant paranoiac, of course, not paranoic – but on reflection (ho ho) it is a crappy line, since mirrors can’t be paranoid. Feel free to help me out with a better line to convey the notion that Cut & Paste is a column full of self-fulfilling fear about the evils of leftism.

    Not that they are alone in this, of course. Just finished Noel Pearson’s Quarterly Essay which contains the interesting claim, “there is a rough rule of thumb when it comes to examining the nostrums and prescriptions of the middle-class Left (black and white): whatever they say our people should do, we should look at approximately the opposite, because that will usually be the right thing to do”. Hmm.

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