The Sydney Morning Herald provides a précis of Monday's Q&A with yours truly. What the average New South Wales reader will take away from the piece is probably their interesting choice of a screen cap (see right).
Among the topics we chewed over was the subject of "lockout laws" - restricting the admission of persons to alcohol after a certain point in the wee small hours of the morning:
Fellow Queenslander Terri Butler, the Labor MP on the panel, saw the argument in favour - including their proposed adoption on her home state. But it fell to visiting Canadian Mark Steyn - a renowned conservative commentator based in the US - to offer the most provocative if mostly sensible perspective: give a government a centimetre and it will take a kilometre. Or as he put, in assessing government regulation of our lives:
"If the state treats you like a child in every other area of life, then it can't let you stay out drinking until four in the morning.
"It's different for me to watch grown men wearing a helmet to ride a bicycle around a Sydney park," said Steyn, who lives in New Hampshire - state motto, "Live Free Or Die".
"It is a different way of looking at things. I think if you look to the government to insulate you against risk in that way, like riding a bicycle round a park on a Sunday afternoon, it's very difficult to argue that untrammelled access to liquor until four in the morning should be an exception to that."
Living free and dying vary across the anglosphere: In New Hampshire, you don't have to wear a helmet for motorcycling or a seat belt in your car, but it's hard to get a drink in my part of the world after six in the evening.
We also pondered the matter of migrants:
"You can't continue to leave hundreds of people effectively rotting in these camps," Ms Hanson-Young said... "The deterrence policy is designed to break people and to say 'We'll make it as difficult as possible so you give up'..."
Meanwhile, conservative commentator and writer Mark Steyn said he was unsympathetic to the asylum seeker situation.
"I think the great population migrations that are under way are a terrible thing and I would like the evil of human trafficking to cease," Mr Steyn said.
"It would be better for the world if their countries were to be made more habitable."
The Guardian also highlights a few exchanges. For American readers, it's worth noting that both main Australian parties are well to the right of anyone in the US on this issue. If, say, Donald Trump were to propose that illegal immigrants be warehoused in camps on offshore pinprick islands, the media would be hailing him as the new Hitler. But in Oz both Liberals and Labor favor essentially the same policy:
Canadian author Mark Steyn, after saying he would "play the token right-wing madman", upbraided the government for failing to "own the problem" of detention centres or honour its responsibility to deal "expeditiously" with refugee claims.
Steyn said he was "broadly unsympathetic" to what he described as "nonsense" attempts to paint "economic" migrants seeking access to first world countries as refugees.
"That said, I have problems with what is going on in Nauru and Papua New Guinea, which seems to me, as basically an old school imperialist, to be colonialism with all the defects and none of the benefits," he said.
"If you are going to warehouse people in essentially former Australian colonies, I think you have an obligation to process them expeditiously."
Steyn said the government had "a responsibility to own the problem, so you don't contract it to a private contractor".
"The government of Australia – if it's going to do some deal with the government of Nauru or the government of Papua New Guinea to have some camps there – has a responsibility to run those camps and ensure, for example, there are first class medical facilities there," he said.
"There is absolutely no reason why people should be there two and a half years and why they should be there in those conditions ... two and a half years under a camp run by private contractors is not an acceptable policy."
We also discussed free speech:
Steyn argued there was no case for government "regulating free speech", saying the ignorant and ill-informed would be "defeated ... in the marketplace of ideas".
"The 'N-word' as they call it in the United States, a derogatory word for black people, makes up a big chunk, 80% of rap records," he said.
"'Queer' used to be a pejorative term and then people reclaimed it and started using it. You get into very dark territory when you start criminalising language."
More from The Mercury in Tasmania:
But Mark Steyn said Jones' remarks were evidence of "the value of free speech".
He said that, while he was not an expert in Indigenous populations in Australia, he felt the subject would benefit from a "more robust debate". He compared the restriction of free speech to the situation on New Year's Eve in Cologne, Germany, saying "the police, the media and the Government declined to report it for over a week and crack down on social media on people who expressed opinions of it.
"If you can't say what you think about a subject, the only alternative is to punch somebody's lights out."
You can see the full edition of "Q&A" here.