Quarterly Essay 56

Guy Rundle on Clive Palmer

Guy Rundle

Release Date:
November 2014
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Guy Rundle on Clive Palmer and the Palmer United Party.

Clive Palmer is the wildcard of Australian politics. Since the last election, when this eccentric mining magnate narrowly won a seat in the House of Representatives – and his Palmer United Party gained two Senate spots – he has become the lightning rod for discontentment with major-party politics.

In this dazzlingly intelligent and entertaining essay, Guy Rundle observes Palmer close up, examining his rise to prominence, the role of money in politics, the roots of populism in Australian politics, the new media environment and much more.

Rundle analyses the ripples from the big rock Palmer has thrown in the Canberra pond. As Palmer negotiates with the Abbott government and rallies his forces, the question remains: how far can he go?


This issue also contains correspondence relating to the previous issue QE55 Dragon's Tail by Noel Pearson. Correspondence relating to QE56 will appear in the next issue.

About the Author

Guy Rundle is Crikey’s correspondent-at-large. A frequent contributor to a wide range of publications in Australia and the UK, he was editor of Arena Magazine for fifteen years. He has written several hit stage shows for Max Gillies and is the author of, among others, Quarterly Essay 3, The Opportunist, and Down to the Crossroads, an account of the 2008 US presidential election.