Victorian Labor

Pod On The Hill

Pod on the Hill is the official weekly podcast of…
Pod On The Hill


Pod on the Hill is the official weekly podcast of Victorian Labor. Join us every Thursday for an in depth conversation with Labor people about Australian politics, events and campaign activities from home and abroad. Keeping the light on the hill one podcast at a time.


News & Politics


Ep. 123: Minister Martin Pakula

Dec 18, 2019 00:38:07


This week our guest is Martin Pakula, the Minister for Racing, Jobs, Innovation & Trade, Tourism, Sport & Major Events. We talk about why so many children of immigrants join the Labor Party, what he won when he appeared on Sale of the Century and why he loves gangster films.

Ep 122: Minister for Equality, Mental Health and Creative Industries Martin Foley

Dec 13, 2019 00:33:28


2019 has been a busy year across Minister Martin Foley portfolio's of Equality, Mental Health and Creative Industries. Toby Halligan sits down with the Minister to talk through the Andrews Government's iconic changes to Victoria's birth certificate laws, the stories from the mental health Royal Commission, and why it's important to have a portfolio dedicated to the arts.

Sally McManus - ACTU Secretary - Fighting back against Scott Morrison's war on worker

Dec 6, 2019 00:17:01


Fresh from the latest battle in the Coalition's War on Workers Sally McManus joins us to talk about the defeat of the "Ensuring Integrity Bill".

Parliamentary Wrap 2019 with Ingrid Stitt and Danny Pearson

Nov 29, 2019 00:30:57


The Parliament has wrapped up for the year. Conrad French and Nicola Castleman caught up with Member for Essendon Danny Pearson and Member of the Legislative Council representing the Western Metropolitan Region Ingrid Stitt for the 2019 Parliamentary Wrap.

Ep. 118: Andrew Leigh discusses his new book "Innovation + Equality"

Nov 22, 2019 00:34:00


Andrew Leigh is the member for Fenner in the Federal Parliament. He joined Pod on the Hill as he launches just this week his new book "Innovation + Equality", which he co-wrote with economist Joshua Gans. The book explores the tensions between these two critical ideals. Andrew argues that equality can stay at the forefront of our movement even while we embrace innovation. We ask him how.

Ep. 115: Tim Watts - The Golden Country: Australia's Changing Identity

Nov 15, 2019 00:38:48


Australia is a successful multicultural society with monocultural institutions and symbols. Tim Watts' family personifies this contradiction. He joins Toby Halligan to discuss his new book which investigates why Australia's imagined community is so far behind its lived community and what can be done.

Ep. 117: Nick Staikos

Nov 8, 2019 00:44:09


Nick Staikos won the critical seat of Bentleigh in the Victorian state election in 2014 with a margin of just 0.8%. Fast-forward to 2018 and he increased his margin to over 11%. We discover how Nick’s values were shaped by his parents who migrated from Greece in the 1960s and 70s and how his grandfather's love of Gough Whitlam cemented those views. We also talk about Nick’s time on Glen Eira Council and how that has helped him as the member for Bentleigh.

Ep. 116: Steve Bracks 1999 Election Win Anniversary Edition

Nov 1, 2019 00:50:10


Steve Bracks is a legend of the Labor Party and we've just celebrated the 20th anniversary of his historic victory over Jeff Kennett in the 1999 election. Nicola Castleman sat down with Steve to talk about that remarkable election.

Ep. 115: Dr Ben Wellings on Brexit

Oct 18, 2019 00:57:08


As the clock ticks down on the United Kingdom’s deadline for a Brexit deal, Toby Halligan speaks to Monash University and expert in all things Brexit, Dr Ben Wellings. Is the UK approaching yet another cliff in the never ending slap-stick tragedy of Brexit? Would a second referendum yield a different result? What will it all mean for Australia? Ben answers all this and more on this week’s Pod On The Hill.

Ep. 114: Senator Kim Carr on democracy, nationhood and identity

Oct 3, 2019 00:39:31


Senator Kim Carr joined the podcast this week, to discuss a new inquiry taking place in the Senate. With a look back into history and an examination of the tensions in Australia and abroad Kim discusses his inquiry into nationhood, national identity and democracy. As the world grapples with technological transformations, social fragmentation and the loud disturbances from the extremist fringes how do we protect and enhance our hard-won democratic institutions?

Ep. 113: Grand Final Special!

Sep 27, 2019 00:31:55


It is Grand Final week! We're joined by Shadow Minister for Health Chris Bowen, plus GWS fan and Richmond stalwart and Member for Bayswater Jackson Taylor.

Ep. 112: New Labor MP Chris Brayne

Sep 19, 2019 00:32:11


This week Nicola Castleman interviewed Chris Brayne, Member for Nepean in the Victorian Parliament. They spoke about his stunning win in 2018 which left Antony Green stuck for words, the journey via Indonesia to his brand new parliamentary career and a little bit about the gorgeous Mornington Peninsula he loves so much.

Ep. 110: Damien Kingsbury on East Timor's fight for freedom

Sep 13, 2019 01:10:40


Timor Leste was witness to dramatic scenes 20 years ago as they embarked upon their independence from Indonesia. Damien Kingsbury joined Nicola to relate the history of Timor Leste's incredible journey from colony to young democracy, Australia's varying role through the decades and the challenges ahead for our close friends to the north.

Ep. 109: Hospo Voice on wage theft in hospitality

Sep 6, 2019 00:42:35


Nicola sat down this week with activists from Hospo Voice to discuss conditions for staff in Melbourne's hospitality industry. Wage theft and sexual harassment confront alarming numbers of hospitality workers, but James and Tim are making a difference in the industry. They also give us tips on how we can make an enormous difference in the industry, whether we're hospo workers or not.

Ep. 109: Jacob Varghese CEO of Maurice Blackburn Lawyers

Sep 1, 2019 00:48:32


This week on Pod on the Hill, Clare Burns was joined by Jacob Varghese, CEO of Maurice Blackburn Lawyers, the Australian law firm at the centre of some of our biggest class action cases, and a supporter of this show. Jacob joined Clare to talk about his time with Maurie Bs and the justice issues they're now taking on for all Australians.

Ep. 108: New Labor MP Peta Murphy

Aug 23, 2019 00:41:09


Peta Murphy sensationally won the seat of Dunkley at the recent federal election. She joins Toby to discuss her campaign, and the stunning legal career she built before entering politics. She also speaks candidly about her recent cancer diagnosis, which has struck for the second time, and how she's juggling her health with Canberra. An unmissable episode.

Ep. 107: Jim Stanford on automation and the future of work

Aug 16, 2019 00:46:44


Jim Stanford is an economist and Director of the Centre for Future Work, based at the Australia Institute. Originally hailing from Canada, where he was Director of Policy at Unifor, Canada's largest private-sector trade union, he's also the author of Economics for Everyone: A Short Guide to the Economics of Capitalism. Clare Burns spoke to Jim about how technology is changing work and the social and economic impacts of automation and artificial intelligence.

Ep. 106: Clare O'Neil

Aug 8, 2019 00:50:50


Clare O'Neil is the Shadow Minister for Innovation, Technology & the Future of Work. Clare Burns spoke to her about her passion for equality in education, her families love of books, and what working in the beating heart of American capitalism, the New York Stock Exchange was like.

Ep. 105: New Labor MP Paul Hamer on learning from the Holocaust and why infrastructure matters

Aug 2, 2019 00:31:36


Paul Hamer won the seat of Box Hill in a stunning result in 2018, remarkably, running his own campaign. Toby Halligan speaks with Paul about how his family’s escape from the Holocaust has shaped his worldview, and why his work as a civil engineer has shaped his passion for infrastructure.

Ep. 104: Shireen Morris: Shakespeare, Neighbours, and Constitutional Change

Jul 18, 2019 00:39:49


Shireen Morris is a constitutional lawyer, adviser to the Cape York Institute and was Labor’s candidate for the Federal seat of Deakin at the 2019 election. Toby Halligan spoke to her about her work on the Uluru Statement from the Heart, why Labor was a natural fit for her, and how being on Neighbours compares with politics.

Ep.103 Richard Marles

Jul 11, 2019 01:02:52


He's the Shadow Defence Minister, the Deputy Leader of the Labor Party and he loves Geelong. We speak to Richard Marles about when Kardinia Park tops Disneyland, how his snow globe collection began and what shapes his thoughts on defence policy.

Ep. 102 Political Researcher Simon Welsh

Jun 21, 2019 00:55:26


Simon Welsh is a political researcher who devotes his time to understanding voters’ motivations and what drives their decisions. Nicola Castleman spoke to Simon about the Federal election result, how focus groups actually work, and which character in Hollowmen he most resembles.

Ep, 101 New Labor MP John Kennedy

Jun 14, 2019 00:25:58


John Kennedy’s remarkable win over John Pesutto, former Liberal MP and Shadow Attorney General, in the blue-ribbon seat of Hawthorn was one of the most stunning results from the 2018 State Election. Conrad French spoke to John about the education system, his faith, the election result, and why a newspaper once mistakenly thought he’d captained a frigate.

Ep. 100: New Labor MP Steve McGhie

May 31, 2019 00:41:32


Despite nursing a broken hip, and having just retired as the State Secretary of Ambulance Employees Australia - Victoria, Steve McGhie stepped up to run for the state seat of Melton at the 2018 election. The rest, as they say, is history. Interviewer Toby Halligan learned what the advantages can be to having an identical twin, how being a paramedic has changed in the past thirty years, and what he hopes to achieve in the seat of Melton.

Ep. 99: New Labor MP Matt Fregon - Can I help you?

May 10, 2019 00:26:56


Last year Matt Fregon was elected in what Anthony Green described as a shock win for Labor in Mount Waverley. Matt tells us how that happened, how it changed his and his family's life and what he wants to achieve now.

Ep. 98: Family violence: from emergency support to political response. Where are we now?

May 3, 2019 00:45:36


Julie Kun is the CEO of WIRE, the crisis support service established in 1984, when it stood alone to support the most vulnerable women facing family violence. Julie takes us through the help available to victim-survivors and how WIRE has evolved to support families in need. She also tells us what Labor is doing to confront the issues of family violence, to not only support those in crisis but to change the conversation.

Ep 97: What is the go with electric cars

Apr 18, 2019 00:38:27


This week Nicola spoke with Mounir Kiwan, car expert, car nerd and veteran of the electric car industry. Mounir doesn't speak for any car company or industry body but instead gives us his own perspective on the future of the electric car industry.

Ep. 96: Change the Rules Rally

Apr 11, 2019 00:29:32


This week Pod on the Hill went to the Change the Rules Rally. Clare Burns spoke with Union leaders and members about why they were attending the rally and what the Change the Rules campaign is all about.

Ep. 95: New Labor Member – Dr Tien Kieu

Apr 5, 2019 00:42:22


This week Dr Tien Kieu, professor in quantum mechanics and newly elected MP in the South Eastern Metropoltan region, joins us in conversation on Pod on the Hill. Tien spoke about his childhood in Vietnam, and his extraordinary escape to Australia as a refugee. He also speaks about his impressive academic career and his election to the Victorian Parliament last year.

Ep. 94: Women in Football with Angela Pippos

Mar 27, 2019 00:36:14


Angela Pippos is an established sports journalist who for many years presented national sports news for leading news broadcasters. She joined Conrad to discuss the AFLW Grand final but also women in football and football Journalism more broadly.

Ep. 93: New Labor Member - Will Fowles

Mar 22, 2019 00:35:24


This week we continue with our new Labor MP series. Will Fowles was elected at last year's Victorian State election. We find out his route to Parliament, why he ran for election and what he wants for the people of Burwood and Victoria.

Ep 92: New Labor Member - Sarah Connolly

Mar 15, 2019 00:46:27


This week new Assistant State Secretary Clare Burns appears on Pod on the Hill for the third time, but the first time as host. She speaks to Sarah Connolly the new Labor Member for Tarneit. They discuss Sarah's journey to parliament, and her excitement in her new role. Sarah also tells a story of loss - the challenges and emotions of being mother to her stillborn daughter.

Ep 91: Everything you wanted to know about franking credits - Stephen Koukoulas

Mar 5, 2019 00:23:34


Is this weeks special episode we talk to Stephen Koukoulas who explains exactly what franking credits are.

Ep.90; New Labor Member - Jackson Taylor MP for Bayswater

Mar 1, 2019 00:37:59


Victorian Labor had only won the seat of Bayswater once since its inception in 1992. In 2018 Jackson Taylor won the seat, only the second time Victorian Labor has won the seat. Tune in and find out why Jackson ran, what makes him tick, what he loves about his electorate and what he is looking forward to.

Ep. 89 New Labor Member - Kat Theophanous MP for Northcote

Feb 15, 2019 00:34:49


In 2017 following the passing of Labor member for Northcote Fiona Richardson the Victorian Labor Party lost the seat to the Greens Political Party. At last year's Victorian State Election Kat Theophanous reclaimed the seat for Labor. We hear her story and what drives her in Northcote.

EP. 88: New Labor Member - Gary Maas MP for Narre Warren South.

Feb 7, 2019 00:35:55


This week we meet another of the new Labor MPs elected at last years Victorian state election. Gary is the former Victorian State Secretary of the NUW.

Ep. 87: New Labor Member - Julliana Addison - Wendouree

Feb 1, 2019 00:33:39


Pod on the Hill is back for 2019. This weeks guest is the new Labor member for Wendouree Juliana Addison who was elected at last years State Election.

Ep. 86: Steve Bracks final campaign update

Nov 22, 2018 00:18:45


Former Premier Steve Backs joins us for his last campaign update of the 2018 Victorian State Election.

Ep. 85: Election Series: Victorian Premier Dan Andrews and Former Premier Steve Bracks

Nov 16, 2018 01:01:09


This week Stephen speaks with Premier Dan Andrews and Conrad continues his weekly catch up with former Premier Steve Bracks.

Ep. 84: Election Series - Catch up on the Campaign and Special Steve Bracks segment

Nov 13, 2018 00:42:59


This week Nicola and Stephen discussed the Community Action Network campaign in South Barwon, Ripon and Prahran. And former Steve Bracks spoke with Conrad about his thoughts on the campaign.

Ep. 83 Election Series - Jill Hennessy

Nov 2, 2018 00:49:38


To discuss the major announcements from the 2018 election launch and look back on the first week of the campaign to re-elect Australia’s most progressive government, we are joined by the Minister for Health - Jill Hennessy on this election special edition of Pod On The Hill.

Ep. 82: Election Series - Jenny Mikakos

Oct 25, 2018 00:44:32


This week on our continuing State Election series Jenny Mikakos talks about the Andrews Labor Government 3 year old kinder announcement. She also talks about how only Labor can deliver progressive forward thinking policies.

Ep. 81: Election series - Natalie Hutchins

Oct 18, 2018 00:41:00


With only 37 sleeps until election day, the team at Pod On The Hill will dedicate the upcoming podcast episodes to November’s Victorian State Election. Each week we will sit down with Labor’s central campaign players to discuss the critical issues at stake as Labor and the Daniel Andrews government seek a second term. This week Minister Natalie Hutchins joins us.

Ep. 80: Trainspotting with Jacinta Allan

Oct 11, 2018 00:57:43


In August, the Andrews Labor government announced its Suburban Subway Rail Loop. A transformational and historic public transport policy that will modernise and reshape the way Victorians commute. Jacinta Allan, the Victorian Transport Minister joined us to give us the low-down on this visionary project.

Ep. 79: Why community is so important.

Oct 4, 2018 00:52:50


In 2014 Tim Richardson was elected to the seat of Mordialloc helping elect the Andrews Labor Government. We hear how Tim's values were formed, his journey to the Labor party the importance of community and if he regrets being an Essendon supporter.

Ep. 78: The Grand Final Special!

Sep 27, 2018 00:29:33


It is Grand Final Week so Matt Keogh Labor MP for Burt and West Coast fan went head to head with Labor MP for Dandenong and Collingwood fan Gab Williams.

Ep. 77: Cranbourne, a new Labor Heartland

Sep 20, 2018 01:00:34


After long-standing member for Cranbourne, Jude Perera, announced his retirement from parliament a new face emerged to defend a new Labor heartland in our growing outer suburbs. Pauline Richards has taken a road less travelled to become Labor's candidate for Cranbourne in the 2018 Victorian election. She talks about her family, the vision for Cranbourne and bringing fairness and liveability to the suburbs.

Ep. 76: Big Steps

Sep 14, 2018 00:48:37


The Big Steps campaign has been fighting for equality for early childhood educators for 10 years now. We find out about the campaign, the conditions and pay facing our critically important early childhood educators, and how to be involved.

Ep. 75: Ben Carroll, from Kmart to Minister.

Sep 6, 2018 00:58:50


Ben Carroll has a mighty job on his hands. As Minister for Industry and Employment Ben works every day to shape the way Victorians work now, and also the jobs they will have in the future. What does Ben have to say about what the Abbott Government did to destroy the car industry? What positive things does the Andrews government do to give meaningful work to people and build a manufacturing future? Ben has an obvious passion about the work he does as the Minister in Daniel Andrews Government, but he also takes time to talk about his upbringing in the north west, his family, and the steps that have led him to take on such an important role in influencing how we live and earn.

Ep. 74: Linda Burney MP

Aug 31, 2018 00:36:12


Linda Burney was 10 years old when the 1967 referendum was held, a vote which famously changed the constitution to allow the commonwealth to make laws for Aboriginal people, and corrected the injustice that had excluded Aboriginal people from being counted in the census. Linda is today the member for Barton in the Federal Parliament and has served as a minister in the NSW parliament. She spoke to Pod on the Hill about constitutional justice for Aboriginal people, the leadership failures in Canberra and the work she is doing in preventing family violence.

Ep. 73: Libspill!

Aug 23, 2018 00:39:51


On Tuesday morning August 20 Peter Dutton unsuccessfully challenged Malcolm Turnbull for the Liberal Party leadership. Since then what has occurred has been unprecedented. Rob Mitchell the Labor Member for McEwen joined us for an insiders perspective on the weeks events.

Ep. 72: Jaala Pulford - How to make change.

Aug 16, 2018 01:10:56


Its only taken the Victorian government 146 years to appoint a woman as the Agriculture Minister, but Labor's Jaala Pulford is busy making up for lost time. As this week's guest on Pod On The Hill, Conrad spoke with Jaala about growing up in regional Victoria, working at a male dominated blue collar union in the 90’s, and dealing with the tragedy of losing her daughter.

Ep. 71: A Historical Interview

Aug 10, 2018 01:09:17


Today marks the 28th anniversary of the historic elevation of Joan Kirner as Victoria’s 42nd Premier. This week’s special episode is extracts from an interview from 2013 conducted by Nicola Castleman and RTBU Secretary Luba Grigorovitch and provides an insight in to what drove Joan as a passionate campaigner for education, her love for Nelson Mandela, working with communities and her achievements as Premier of the state. We thank Ron Kirner for supporting the publication of this timeless piece of both Labor’s history and Joan’s story.

Ep. 70: Katie Hall a Labor of Love

Jul 26, 2018 00:58:25


After Marsha Thomson, long-standing member for Footscray, announced her retirement from politics a daughter of the west emerged as Labor's new candidate for this iconic seat. Katie Hall, a 5th generation western suburbs resident and long-time Labor and union activist, joined our podcast this week to talk about her campaign experience and her 20 years in the party. A Bulldogs fanatic, Footscray history nerd and winner of a chocolate bar for wagging school Katie reflects on what it will take to represent the people of ever-changing Footscray and protect its working class legacy.

Ep. 69: Quiet Voices

Jul 20, 2018 00:40:30


This week's guest is Labor Member for Carrum Sonya Kilkenny. We found out about how her mother and father shaped her political values, and how moving to Boston opened her eyes about inequality. Sonya also reflected on her time at the Kimberley Land Council, plus the challenges of losing an election campaign. We discuss how proud she is of the amazing strides that have been taken for the people of Carrum, and the whole sand-belt, since the election of the Andrews Labor Government in 2014.

Ep. 68: Forget Trump - it's happening here

Jul 12, 2018 01:10:01


While outrage focuses on Trump and his attacks on social justice Australia isn't immune. On this week’s episode of Pod on the Hill, Nicola spoke with National Secretary of the CPSU, Nadine Flood.

Ep. 67: Shalom Isaac Herzog

Jul 5, 2018 00:38:25


On this week’s episode Stephen spoke with Israeli Labor’s outgoing leader of the opposition in Knesset - Isaac Herzog. Isaac discussed the strong historic connection between Australia and Israel, modern Zionism and the challenges facing the Jewish diaspora, the pathway to a two-state solution and addressing the crisis in Gaza.

Ep. 66: A Shaun Leane Podcast - this is good hey!

Jun 28, 2018 01:11:28


From Oakleigh Tech to sparkie, Shaun’s journey to the red seats of State Parliament has been a fascinating journey.

Ep. 65: How to solve the politics of fear.

Jun 21, 2018 00:50:06


Conrad sits down with Labor member for Wills Peter Khalil. They cover Peter’s parents' journey from Egypt and the sacrifices they made, and how Peter Daicos was his hero (and not just because of his marvellous football skills). They also discuss the fracturing of society and the politics of fear, plus his own achievements to date and what he wants to achieve in the future.

Ep. 64: It's the World Game Episode

Jun 14, 2018 01:01:31


Stephen is joined by Labor councillor for the City of Moreland and Brunswick Zebras star attaching winger - Cr Annalivia Carli to discuss the 2018 World Cup, the growth of the game among girls and women here in Australia, past World Cup travels, football anthems and the Socceroos chances in Russia.

Ep. 63: What Royal Wedding?

Jun 6, 2018 00:53:34


We all get a day off on Monday, why? The Queen’s Birthday. Wouldn’t it be better if we could celebrate an Australian as Head of State? Australian Republican Movement CEO Michael Cooney talks with Stephen about how we can do just that.

Ep. 62: The Irish Repeal the 8th

May 31, 2018 00:51:10


Last week Ireland voted to repeal the constitutional amendment that placed a near total ban on abortion. Stephen Donnelly spoke with Irish Labour's Deirdre Kingston about this historic victory for the women of Ireland.

Ep. 61: The Malaysian Election - Shakespeare couldn't write this.

May 24, 2018 00:40:10


On May 9 Malaysians went to the polls expecting the re-election of incumbent Najib Razakand and the continuation of his Barisan Nasional party’s 61 year rule. Instead Mahathir Mohammad with the help of long-time political enemy Anwar Ibrahmin surprised political orthodoxy and successfully won the election. Erin Cook - a Jakarta based free-lance journalist specialising in South East Asia joined us on Pod on the Hill to discuss how and why it happened and the ramifications for the region and Australia.

Ep. 60: Don't be too polite - Claire Moore Queensland Senator

May 17, 2018 00:53:36


On this weeks episode Nicola spoke with Queensland Senator Claire Moore. They disscussed the appalling management of Centrelink by the conservatives, the Aboriginal governance campaign being driven by terrific Labor allies Linda Burney Member for Barton and Senators Malarndirri McCarthy and Pat Dodson. They also spoke about the future of the Labor Party and what reforms are needed.

Ep. 59: Women on the Wharf

May 9, 2018 00:38:08


This week I spoke to the MUA National Division Womens Representative Mich-elle Myers. We discussed her path from working in a bank to being a wharfie, the challenges of being a woman working in the maritime industry with the barriers that are put in front of women, and of course we discussed the battles that unions in Australia are fighting and what this means for the Labor party.

Ep. 58: How do we solve Climate Change?

May 3, 2018 00:37:55


This week Shadow Climate Change and Energy Minister Mark Butler talks party reform, the damage the conservatives are doing to the environment, Labor's plan to implement effective climate policy, the jobs that can be created in the environment sector.

Ep. 57: Wayne Swan and the fight against inequality.

Apr 25, 2018 00:38:57


Wayne Swan has been intimately involved in Australian politics with a career spanning well over forty years. From a party official to navigating Australia though the global financial crisis, Wayne has dedicated his political life fighting for working people.

Ep. 56: Save Our Sons, the beginning of an anti-war movement.

Apr 19, 2018 00:58:33


It is ANZAC day next week, and a time to reflect on Australia's military past. On Pod on the Hill Nicola found out how Jean McLean helped start a nation-wide movement to oppose the Vietnam War and conscription.

Ep. 55: Milan to Melbourne: the Minister for Ports and Roads on his life and values.

Apr 11, 2018 00:46:01


This week on Pod on the Hill our guest is member for Narre Warren North and Minister for Ports, Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan. In a wide-ranging conversation, we talked of Luke’s childhood in Italy, how his commitment to social justice developed and what the Fitzroy Football Club's destruction meant to his family. We also discussed what it was like returning to Parliament having lost Government, the phenomenal number of projects that he is working on across Victoria and how our opponents are putting in jeopardy Victoria’s future.

Ep. 54: A betrayal of Democracy and Faith.

Apr 5, 2018 00:38:40


Last Good Friday the Victorian Liberals set a new standard for hypocrisy, deceit and outright bastardry that undermines the very fabric of our democracy. On this week’s episode we spoke with with Upper House Government Whip Jaclyn Symes who saw it all unravel.

Ep. 53: A voice in Argentina.

Mar 29, 2018 00:26:36


This week we continue the International Progressive series of interviews with the inspirational Ignacio Noguerol. Ignacio is a neighbourhood co-coordinator in Argentina for the Argentinian Socialist Party, Partido Socialista.

Ep. 52: Ged Kearney.... MEMBER FOR BATMAN!!

Mar 22, 2018 00:38:32


After a massive win on Saturday evening in Batman, Nicola spoke to Ged Kearney - the newly elected Federal Member for Batman.   When Ged took the stage in Thornbury on Saturday night in front of over 700 Labor supporters - the room went wild. Discover the path she and the Labor campaign forged to chalk up this historic-against the odds victory.

Ep. 51: Standing tall - Kristina Keneally on taking her place

Mar 15, 2018 00:56:38


Kristina spoke about growing up in Ohio, her feminist awakening, the Catholic Church, the importance of sport for women and what drives her in the Senate. She also reflected on her time as NSW Premier and the fragmentation of media and politics.

Ep. 50: Tom McMahon - the 50-state-strategy guy

Mar 9, 2018 00:49:33


Tom talks about growing up in the Republican heartland of Nebraska and his entry into Democratic politics He discusses his time working on Howard Dean’s Democratic primary campaign and the impact it had on future campaigns; why the Democratic Party needed restructuring; the problems associated with Obama’s success and are progressives building for success at the crucial mid-term elections in November.

Ep. 48: Organizing the Resistance

Feb 22, 2018 01:00:22


On this week's episode of Pod On The Hill, I caught up with Kwesi Chappin from the Color of Change. Colour of Change is the largest online racial justice organisation in the United States and Kwesi is the Political Director. Kwesi talks about his role at Color of Change, life under a Trump Presidency and the impact his administration's policies are having on the African-American community. Kwesi tells us his story of moving from a tropical paradise to freezing Washington D.C, his pathway to become a community organizer and how grassroots organizing is now the drving force behind the progressive resistance.

Ep. 47: Parent/Teacher night with the Education Minister.

Feb 14, 2018 00:44:49


What’s it like slapping down the Prime Minister when he gets a bit snarky? Victorian Deputy Premier James Merlino answers that question on today’s Pod on the Hill. And as Minister for Education, James discussed the devastating impact the Liberals had on the education sector and what the Labor Government has done since to repair the damage.

Ep. 46: Ged Kearney our candidate for Batman!

Feb 9, 2018 00:50:24


Former nurse, long-time activist and more recently ACTU President, Ged is now Labor’s candidate for Batman.   For most of our listeners, Ged needs no introduction. In fact, you might remember our chat with her last year.   And *spoiler alert*, she’s still pretty fired up about fighting inequality, schools funding, protecting workers’ rights and preserving Medicare.

Ep. 45: Follow Sports like a Girl

Feb 1, 2018 01:03:34


Women’s sport has seen an explosion in popularity and mainstream media coverage over the past three years. An early voice in this digital media space is Freya Logan – Labor Party member and host of the highly succesfull podcast Follow Sports Like A Girl.  To coincide with this weekend’s Women’s Big Bash League finals, the start of the AFLW season and the final round before the finals in the W-League we sat down with Freya to talk women in sport.

Ep. 44: An electorate officer, the perfect detective?

Jan 25, 2018 01:09:00


On this week’s episode Nicola Castleman sits down with writer Shane Maloney, the author responsible for the extraordinarily successful and entertaining Murrary Whelan series of novels. Shane reflects on the changing Melbourne of his northern suburbs, the long and successful life of his books, and the pull of the detective novel on our collective psyche. Find Shane's titles in bookshops and libraries if you haven't already entered the giddy world of the electorate officer sleuth as he 'falls upwards' in his adventures.

Ep. 43: Boxing Day Special

Dec 26, 2017 01:10:45


It’s Boxing Day and as we polish off the remaining scraps of turkey and ham, a great Melbourne summer tradition kicks off at the Melbourne Cricket Ground this morning, so who better to talk to today than former Labor federal staffer and current cricket journalist, Adam Collins?

Ep. 42: 2017 State Politics wrap with Shing & Dimopoulos

Dec 20, 2017 00:58:54


Penalty rates, Lobster, Marriage Equality. It’s been a massive year for State politics and we thought we’d take a look back at the highlights.   So, for the last official Pod on the Hill for 2017, all of our regular presenters are throwing in their two cents' worth in our Annual State Politics Wrap.

Ep. 41: Jacindamania

Dec 14, 2017 00:30:04


On this week's episode Stephen Donnelly sits down with the Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern. Jacinda took the reins of New Zealand Labour just seven weeks out from the general election and immediately had a momentous impact on the campaign and led Labour into a position to form a coalition government with NZ First and the Greens Party. She talked about her ascendancy to leader, her treatment by the media during the campaign, the priorities of her government and her outrageous claims on Crowded House.

Ep. 40: The Reluctant Prime Minister

Dec 6, 2017 00:39:27


Stephen Donnelly sits down with economist and former Hungarian Prime Minister Gordon Bajnai. He talks about growing up under communism, his elevation to lead his nation through the global financial crisis and the future of the European Union.

Ep. 39: Jacinta Allan from Spring Gully to Spring St

Nov 29, 2017 00:49:17


We hear about Jacinta's early years living in a Labor household in Spring Gully, what effects an early exposure to politics had on her, the path to parliament and the highs and lows of her amazing 18 years so far in parliament.

Ep. 38: Why would you want to be part of a fringe party?

Nov 21, 2017 00:46:11


Conrad is joined by Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, for Tourism, and Cities. Anthony Albanese and they discuss the weekends Northcote by-election loss and what the means for the Labor party more broadly, growing up in a single parent family and Anthony’s career to date.

Ep. 37: Is Clare Burns a fake vegan?

Nov 12, 2017 00:54:05


In the final week of the campaign, Stephen Donnelly sits down with Labor's Clare Burns to catch up on the tight contest in Northcote as she makes the final push towards election day. Clare reflects on the campaign so far, the amazing people she has met, the important issues she’s campaigned on and the less important ones like Fake Vegan and Secret Cat that preoccupy our opponents time.

Ep. 36: “The loss has been devastating”: Labor’s case for safe injecting rooms

Nov 8, 2017 00:55:56


On this week's episode, Member for Richmond Richard Wynne and Secretary of Residents for Victoria Street Drug Solutions, Judy Ryan, join Nicola to discuss the Andrews Labor Government’s planned trial of a safe injecting facility in North Richmond.

Ep. 35: Ben Davis & the AFP Raids

Oct 31, 2017 00:43:40


Stephen Donnelly is joined by the AWU's Ben Davis following last week's raid by the Australian Federal police on his union office. Ben gives a detailed account of the raid on his West Melbourne office, the political motivations behind the raid and the murky collusion and amateurish cover-up by a conservative government desperate to not talk about itself. ********** There is only 16 days left in the Northcote by-election. To help elect Labor’s Clare Burns sign up for a 2-hour phonebank or doorknock shift add your name at

Ep. 34: Sam Dastyari - A Halal of a Podcast

Oct 25, 2017 01:06:03


Conrad French spoke with Senator Sam Dastyari about his experience coming to Australia, the migrant identity, the 2005 Cronulla riots and discuss his successes and controversies in politics. Join our volunteers on Labor's campaign for the Northcote by-election. Sign up at or donate at

Ep. 33: Millie, Grant & Tash in Northcote

Oct 18, 2017 00:35:43


Who are Millie, Grant and Tash? A Trades Hall campaigner at the Young Workers Centre; a letter-boxer who was once too shy to talk to voters; and a young person whose family home was compulsorily acquired for the dud East-West Link - they've all got a different reason for campaigning for Labor's Clare Burns in the Northcote By-Election. Join these amazing volunteers on Labor's campaign in Northcote & sign up at or donate at

Ep. 32: Premier Daniel Andrews with a Game of Thrones spoiler alert

Oct 12, 2017 00:53:01


Stephen Donnelly is joined by Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews to discuss the Northcote by-election, renter's rights, a fragmented media market, his pathway into politics, his love of golf and Midnight oil. WARNING: Game of Thrones spoiler alert towards the end. If you wish to volunteer on Labor's campaign in Northcote sign up at and donate at

Ep. 31: Peter Mandelson, New Labour, Brit Pop and the Brexit Disaster

Oct 4, 2017 00:57:50


Stephen Donnelly sits down with former minister in the Blair and Brown Labour governments - Peter Mandelson to discuss his time at the centre of British politics his role in the Neil Kinnock campaign in 87, the rise of Tony Blair and New Labour, the war in Iraq, the impact of Brexit on Britain and Jeremy Corbyn's leadership. Don't forget to donate to Labor's by-campaign in Northcote and support Clare Burns. Chip in $12 at

Ep. 30: AFL Grand Final Preview Podcast with Kate Ellis & Lizzie Blandthorn

Sep 26, 2017 00:43:57


On this week's special AFL episode Nicola Castleman is joined by Kate 'Carn the Crows' Ellis and Lizzie 'Yellow & Black' Blandthorn to preview Saturday's blockbuster AFL Grand Final between the Adelaide Crows and the mighty Richmond Tigers. Kate and Lizzie share their respective passions for Adelaide and Richmond, they discuss the success of the AFLW, sport and politics, and their highest and lowest moments as footy fans.

Ep. 29: Post UK Election Debrief with Louise Magee

Sep 21, 2017 00:40:57


Now that the dust has settled following the amazing efforts by UK Labour at the June general election, Conrad sits down with Welsh Labour Secretary Louise Magee to debrief on the election result and where to from here for our British Labour cousins.

Ep. 28: Clare Burns our Candidate for Northcote!

Sep 13, 2017 00:53:07


We discuss the enormous task of continuing the legacy of the late Fiona Richardson, Clare’s childhood adjusting from country to city life, her work as a Speech Pathologist, why she loves her Northcote community and the issues that are driving people in the inner-north.

Ep. 27: Angry about the High Court? Listen to this.

Sep 7, 2017 01:00:09


On this week's episode Nicola discusses the Marriage Equality Plebiscite with Rainbow Labor members Megan Berry, Sarah Cole and Peter Boyle, how they deal with homophobia and what the plebiscite is doing to their community.

Ep. 26: Everything you wanted to know about marriage equality but were too afraid to ask

Aug 17, 2017 00:51:57


This week Wil Stracke industrial and campaigns officer at Victorian Trades Hall answers all your questions on the marriage equality campaign, the safe schools program and updates us on the campaign to protect penalty rates.

Ep. 25: Australian NASA Astrobiologist Abigail Allwood phones home.

Aug 9, 2017 00:39:16


On this week's Australian Science Week special, Conrad talks with NASA Astrobiologist Abigail Allwood, the first Australian and first woman to lead a Mars mission.

Ep. 24: Steve Bracks. Listens. Acts. Podcasts.

Aug 2, 2017 01:09:12


This week Conrad talks with former Victorian Premier Steve Bracks about growing up in Ballarat, starting a career in a regional centre, entry into politics, life in opposition, the 1999 election, the importance of reform and even about the future of cycling in Australia.

Ep. 23: Why does Victorian wannabe Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen love our footy and our economy?

Jul 26, 2017 01:05:31


Stephen Donnelly is joined by Labor's Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen to talk about death threats from councillors, cutting his teeth under Mark Latham’s leadership, his role in the Rudd Government during the Global Financial Crisis and Labor's economic pathway back to government.

Ep. 22: Stay Woke! Civil Rights in America with Kevin Myles

Jul 20, 2017 01:10:57


On this week's episode Stephen is joined by civil rights organizer and Regional Field Director of the NAACP Kevin Myles to discuss the issues confronting black America, the Obama legacy and fighting back against police violence and political disenfranchisement.

Ep. 21: Anna Greenberg - Is election polling broken?

Jul 13, 2017 01:11:00


On this week's podcast Stephen Donnelly is joined by leading US based pollster and researcher Anna Greenberg to discuss the role of political polling, who elected Trump, where to for Democrats, gun reform, the Yankees and coffee.

Ep. 20: Going rogue with Kate Ellis

Jul 5, 2017 01:14:31


This week Stephen Donnelly sat down with Kate Ellis MP to discuss her decision to walk away from politics, her meteoric rise in the parliament, what motivated her to expose Kevin Rudd on Adelaide radio, Tami Taylor and much more. PS - There's a spoiler alert for those that watch Nashville.

Ep. 19: Women's Organising Network special with Anne Aly

Jun 28, 2017 00:42:12


This week’s special episode, Clare Keyes-Liley spoke with Labor MP for Cowan Anne Aly about her entry into politics and counter terrorism. In part 2 of the podcast Clare was joined by two WON volunteers Akira and Jenny making calls to other women at our first Women’s Organising Network phonebank.

Ep. 18: The secrets of a former Labor Premier, John Cain.

Jun 21, 2017 01:02:14


On this week's Pod On The Hill, former Labor Premier John Cain reflects on his time in office and the challenges of governing in the 1980's.

Ep. 17: Jamila Rizvi on post Trump feminism for the 21st century

Jun 14, 2017 00:59:58


On this week’s Pod On The Hill Conrad sat down with writer, social commentator and former editor-in-chief of Mamamia, Jamila Rizvi to discuss her time as Kate Elllis’s Chief of Staff, her take on modern feminism and what she believes the next major reform for women in Australia needs to be.

Ep. 16: Peter FitzSimons contains the rage and tells us why Australia must become a republic

Jun 7, 2017 00:43:55


With the Queen’s Birthday long weekend upon us, we invited the Australian Republican Movement's Peter FitzSimons on the show to discuss the republican movement's campaign to replace the Queen with a resident for a president.

Ep. 15: Why did Natalie Hutchins hang up on Jeff Kennett?

May 31, 2017 00:52:27


Natalie Hutchins Minister for Local Government, Aboriginal Affairs and Industrial Relations talks about student politics, a treaty with the first Australians, Jeff Kennett's belly button and so much more.

Ep. 14: What does John McTernan think of Jeremy Corbyn and Kevin Rudd?

May 25, 2017 01:26:15


As Britons go to the polls on June 8 - John provides a frank assessment on Jeremy Corbyn and Labour's bleak electoral prospects. Having worked for Julia Gillard, he also has some thoughts on Kevin Rudd too.

Ep. 13: Victorian Labor State Conference Special

May 20, 2017 00:56:52


This week we have a very special Pod On The Hill. Stephen and Conrad co-host record live from Victorian Labor State Conference and are joined by 3 guests, Victorian Branch President Hutch Hussein, NUW State Secretary Gary Maas and Latrobe Conference delegate Amy Muratore.

Ep. 12: Stephen Koukoulas - Australia's most influential economist.

May 11, 2017 01:00:13


Stephen Koukoulas Managing Director of Market Economics, dissects the Federal Budget, gives is thoughts on how to solve housing affordability, the tax system and how much time he has saved now Chris Kenny has blocked him on twitter.

Ep. 11: Tim Pallas answers the hardest question of his life.

May 4, 2017 00:52:11


Victorian Treasurer Tim Pallas and Member for Werribee talks about his life motto, Victoria's record investment in family violence prevention, the Bracks years and sport in Melbourne.

Ep. 10: Michael Cooney on domestic policy, economic crisis and Trump protectionism.

Apr 26, 2017 00:56:35


Michael Cooney, Executive Director of the Chifley Research Centre talks about formulating domestic policy in an age of globalisation, economic crisis and Trump protectionism. Michael also has a bit to say about his roles working for three former Labor leaders including Mark Latham, meeting a Labor legend and his lifetime love of Canberra

Ep. 9: What do Billy Bragg, Hanging Rock, South Sudan and a history class have in common?

Apr 20, 2017 00:58:38


Listen to Mary-Anne tell us about what Gough Whitlam did to change her life, her union activism in Kennett's Victoria, and the heady first months of the Bracks government in 1999.

Ep. 8: Father Bob Maguire and the revolution

Apr 12, 2017 01:03:57


Easter is coming, so we sat down with Melbourne’s own Fr. Bob Maguire on this week’s episode of Pod on the Hill. Revolutionaries… Catholicism… splits… Collingwood… you name it, he covered it!

Ep. 7: Why can't Tim Watts look Jonathan Brown in the eye?

Apr 6, 2017 00:43:10


This week Conrad French is joined by federal member for Gellibrand Tim Watts. Conrad attempts to gain revenge for Tim's constant goading of the Collingwood v Brisbane grand finals of the early 2000s, the challenges of working for significant figures in the Labor Party and the great community of Gellibrand.

Ep. 6: What does a Health Minister and an anti-vaxxer have in common?

Mar 30, 2017 00:52:10


This week Nicola Castleman is back. This week with Victorian Health Minister Jill Hennessy. Nicola and Jill discuss issues around assisted dying, anti-vaxxers, the unique challengers of raising daughters to be leaders, and cheese and bacon balls.

Ep. 5: US Presidential election rehab with John Holden

Mar 22, 2017 00:45:43


On this week's Pod On The Hill Victorian Labor's Conrad French sits down with Obama campaign alumni John Holden to discuss last years US presidential election campaign; life under Trump and where the Democrats go from here. Plus John delivers on his promise of an esoteric choice of song.

Ep. 4: WA Labor election victory breakdown with Lenda Oshalem

Mar 15, 2017 00:59:59


On this week's episode of Pod On The Hill, Stephen Donnelly is joined on the line by WA Labor's Lenda Oshalem to breakdown Labor's historic landslide election victory at the WA state election.

Ep. 3: Ged Kearney - ACTU President

Mar 8, 2017 00:49:52


On this week's episode of Pod on the Hill, Victorian Labor's Nicola Castleman sits down with the President of the ACTU Ged Kearney. Ged talks about her journey into unionism, the current penalty rates campaign and her love of those mighty Tiges!

Ep. 2: Wade Noonan

Mar 2, 2017 00:51:16


On this week's episode of Pod on the Hill Stephen Donnelly sits down with Labor's Member for Williamstown Wade Noonan to discuss his time in the union movement, his transition into politics, jobs, manufacturing and fracking.

Ep. 1: Harriet Shing

Feb 23, 2017 01:05:41


On this week's embryonic episode of Pod on the Hill, Victorian Labor's Stephen Donnelly sits down with Labor Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing. They discuss greyhounds, languages, penalty rates and the curse of the Bambino.