From phone taps to ‘disappeared’ persons, there’s a creeping culture of secrecy lurking within Australia. ABC News Executive Director John Lyons, who live-tweeted the AFP raids at the ABC, and barrister Julian Burnside, who wrote about the secret case of Witness J in The Saturday Paper, discuss the state, society and our courtrooms.
Julian Burnside (Australian)
Julian Burnside QC is a Melbourne barrister specialising in commercial litigation. He is a former president of Liberty Victoria, and has acted pro bono in many human rights cases, in particular concerning the treatment of refugees. He is the author of Watching Out: Reflections on Justice and Injustice, Wordwatching, Watching Brief, and Matilda and the Dragon. He compiled a book of letters written by asylum seekers held in Australia’s detention camps, published as From Nothing to Zero. In 2004, he was elected as a Living National Treasure, and in 2009 he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia. In 2014, he was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize.
John Lyons (Australian)
John Lyons is Head of Investigative Journalism at the ABC. He is author of the bestselling Balcony Over Jerusalem, based on his six years living in Jerusalem. He is a former editor of The Sydney Morning Herald, has won three Walkleys and been named the Graham Perkin Australian Journalist of the Year.
Chris Taylor (Australian)
Chris Taylor is a writer, performer and broadcaster who's best known as a member of The Chaser team, responsible for tv comedy shows such as CNNNN and The Chaser's War on Everything. More recently, he was the creator, co-writer and producer of the critically acclaimed drama Upright for Foxtel. He's just signed a 6-figure deal with Hardie Grant to write his very first tweet, expected to be published in 2028.