Archive for the ‘Ozleft’ Category

History of Ozleft

November 27, 2017

Ozleft was set up by Steve Painter who wrote here under the pseudonym Ed Lewis. Steve died at the age of 68 in December 2016.

Steve collaborated very closely  for about a decade with an old sparring partner and friend, Bob Gould, to publish Bob’s writings here, as well as some of his own. They spoke often daily for several hours about the posts and then jointly wrote them on line, though the impetus for each article usually was Bob as were many of the ideas. However, Steve and Bob, though members of different political parties, were both Marxists, and held a lot in common politically in these years.

During the years of Ozleft, Steve worked as a sub-editor on The Australian for its computer, business and sports sections. He was a Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance house delegate there. At the time of his collaboration with Bob, he was a member of the NSW Greens. Prior to that, Steve was a leading member of the Australian Socialist Workers Party/Democratic Socialist Workers Party for 22 years and an editor of its newspaper.



Bob Gould on Marxists Internet Archive

August 31, 2011

A Bob Gould archive has been set up on Marxists Internet Archive and a start has been made on making Bob’s writing available there.

Ozleft will continue to host Bob’s writing, but MIA is a better organised site that will make it easier to browse his archive and find works.

Tribute in the House, Daryl Melham MP

June 16, 2011

House of Representatives Adjournment Debate – Chamber 14th June 2011

Mr Speaker, Bob Gould was a unique individual. He was born into a socialist family in 1937 and died, where he would have preferred to die, in his Newtown bookshop on May 22nd 2011.


Tribute to Bob in federal parliament

June 2, 2011


Bob Gould, House of Representatives, 30 May 2011

I rise to pay tribute to Newtown bookseller Bob Gould, who passed away on 22 May 2011 aged 74. Bob was part of the progressive left in Australia for the better part of the post-war era. From the Vietnam War to asylum seekers, he has marched and argued for what he believed in. As former New South Wales MLC Meredith Burgmann noted, “He was involved in most of the great political protest movements of the time.”


A book trade salute

May 28, 2011

Bugden's Bookshop, Kings CrossBugden’s Bookshop in King’s Cross marks the passing of Bob Gould.

Tribute to Robert (Bob) Gould

May 28, 2011

John RobertsonOn May 27, John Robertson, parliamentary leader of the NSW Labor Party, paid tribute to Bob Gould in state parliament. The Hansard record follows.


A Tale of Men. Part III

May 20, 2008


People like to talk about the “political landscape”. Like physical landscapes political ones can change dramatically under myriad, uncontrollable influences and in a very short space of time. An event beyond the horizon or too multifaceted to fully comprehend can change the landscape from calm to turbulent in a flash. Perhaps politics is not so much a landscape as a seascape, for like the sea it exists within an environment that is not only unpredictable but with often unfathomable depths.


A tale of men. Part II

May 19, 2008


In hindsight it could be said that the court squandered the opportunity offered by the untimely death of King Oscar to look anew at the question of succession and leadership in the Kingdom. Some historians have said that it was a failure of imagination that the court did not even countenance the possibility of abolishing the position of King altogether and fashioning a new, more democratic and less authoritarian political structure; or at least one less open to the temptations of personal abuse and the misuse of power.


Fifth-columnist spitters?

March 27, 2008

Rohan Cahill has an interesting post on Leftwrites on the treatment of Vietnam veterans after the war, or their perception of such treatment.

In his recent 814 page history Vietnam: The Australian War (HarperCollins, 2007), journalist Paul Ham relates how Australian troops returning home from the front lines of Vietnam were variously spat on and called “baby killers” by anti-war protestors. To a significant extent, Ham’s account relies on interviews he conducted with veterans in 2005/06. Journalist Ham seems to be of the opinion that former Australian anti-war activists owe veterans an apology; he notes that not one protestor has apologised for the abuse. At the same time he records the recollections of a few leading anti-war activists that, to their knowledge, the alleged abusive behaviour did not occur.

Momentarily Ham recognises a problem. On one hand he has veterans with memories of abuse; on the other, anti-war activists with no such memories. Rhetorically he asks, was the abuse the work of an “anonymous Fifth Column”? For journalist Ham, the abuse took place and was widespread. However, as an historian he should have seriously considered the possibility the abuse was/is mythical, part of a complex, essentially post-war, psychological and political process.

Full article

Eight electricity privatisation myths exposed

February 27, 2008

Myth 1: “Prices will be lower because of increased competition”.

Fact: Over the last decade, the average yearly price of electricity per megawatt hour has been $38.22 in NSW. This should be compared to other states in Australia where privatisation has occurred. An example is in South Australia, the average price is $76.36.


Suharto, a media survey

January 30, 2008

There’s a bit of a summary of media responses to Suharto’s death at Against the Flow, with some good links. Well worth a look.


ISO leaves Socialist Alliance

April 8, 2007

Dear comrades,

It is with regret that we write on behalf of the International Socialist Organisation to inform you that the recent ISO national conference voted to disaffiliate from the Socialist Alliance.


Peter Fryer: Communist journalist who told the truth about Hungary 1956

November 7, 2006

Bob Gould  at 3:30 pm on Tuesday, November 7, 2006

Rehosted from Leftwrites

From The Guardian: “The death of Peter Fryer aged 79, comes 50 years to the week since his honest reporting of Hungary’s 1956 revolution for the Daily Worker (now the Morning Star) split the Communist party of Great Britain, and changed his own life. A loyal CP member since 1945, and a Worker journalist for nine years, he immediately wrote a short, passionate book Hungarian Tragedy in defence of the revolution — and was expelled from the party.”


The pope as right-wing cultural warrior

September 17, 2006

And his loyal backstop, His Eminence George Pell

11:36 pm on Sunday, September 17, 2006

Rehosted from Leftwrites

The previous Catholic pope, who died a year or so ago, was at some pains to soften the cultural clash between the Catholic church and Muslims and Jews, and tried to thread his way between the conflicting interests of Muslim countries, the state of Israel and the Catholic church.


Kylie Tennant’s Ride on Stranger

May 11, 2006

By Bob Gould

Kylie Tennant was active in the labour movement in the 1930s and was one of Australia’s finest writers. Her two novels, Ride on Stranger and Foveaux, were very witty accounts of life on the left in the 1930s.