At 32 in 1988, Jana Wendt was Australia's best-known working mother. She told Christopher Day of 'TV Week', "I think it's very difficult working and being a mother. I think they're saints (working mothers). Saints! They should all have medals. It's really difficult to decide whether you'll work or stay at home. It's a game of emotional Russian roulette. On occasions you think you've done the right thing, then you think it's the wrong thing. You have to be single-minded about it and make sure the decision is the right one for the small person (her then 8-month-old son Daniel). I find it's very difficult working and being a mother." 

Jana described the pressures of hosting a nightly current affairs program "terribly draining." She told Paul Speelman of 'The Age', "It's technically impossible with this job to be just a front person. It's one of those jobs where you do have a day-long commitment to the program that comes out of the other end of your efforts at 6.30pm." On reflection, "It's more a kind of awe that you're watched by so many people every night. You're really conscious of how much you can influence people's thinking." 

By 1990, Jana told David Brown, "I think 2 children is a very large number if you want to keep working, at this stage (at 34 years old). I know the work that has to go into looking after one child. By and large, yes, I know what I can do, when and where and how, and it generally works that way, but sometimes it's absolutely chaos. I think my son is conducting a campaign to stop me reading newspapers, which could jeopardize my job ... I could get sacked! 

"That's a struggle in the mornings – the struggle against listening to the radio, which you must do, and watching 'Here's Humphrey'. There's a real struggle. Sometimes both happen at the same time, which leads to both of us being confused. It works itself out. The funny thing is when I'm at home and there's a promo, he turns and says, 'Mother, yes, my mother,' and turns back again. He knows a lot of people who are on TV because we know a lot of people on TV. He thinks it's quite commonplace. He's pretty cool about it. He's a cool dude." 

Looking ahead, Jana said at the time, "By the time he's a teenager I will be a sewing circle – yes, absolutely. I don't think that 13 years from now (say 2003) I'll be in the business. I don't think so. So, he'll have a tough time at kindergarten, perhaps. Although, I don't think they'll really give him a hard time!" 

Daniel Ward graduated in law at the University of Sydney. In May 2013, he gave an address to the Law School's prize giving ceremony. The text of his speech was published in 'The Australian', "… Sometimes at law school I felt like I needed a whispering slave, not to remind me I am human (because if the flying light fittings didn't do that then the real property exam certainly did), but rather to remind me what I was doing there. Why do students put themselves through law school? Why do we voluntarily submit to an experience that, as my premature grey hairs attest, can be a harrowing ordeal? 

"I remember one class in which constitutional law professor Peter Gerangelos waxed lyrical about Chief Justice John Marshall of the United States Supreme Court. 'You see, ladies and gentlemen,' he said, 'everybody remembers the Mozarts and the Michelangelos, but the great jurists like Marshall are the unsung heroes - they build the legal basis for societies where the Mozarts and Michelangelos can flourish.' … I think Professor Gerangelos had it dead right: And for me, that was a pretty good reason to persevere through law school. I wonder how Australian lawyers will handle this immense responsibility in coming decades.  

"… The danger is Australian lawyers will get comfortable with authoritarianism. There is a risk we will subconsciously make a thousand tiny concessions to illiberalism, and allow it to insinuate itself into our psyche. We might come to tolerate affronts to the rule of law. In short, commercial opportunity threatens to hypnotise us, turning us into well-meaning Manchurian candidates.

"My grandfather had been the last person in my family to begin a law degree. He didn't finish it. And that’s not because he failed contracts. It is because as a student in Czechoslovakia, he was a vocal participant in anti-communist protests. When the communists took over in 1948, the writing was on the wall. And he didn’t wait to be lined up against that wall. He quit law school. Then he quit the country. I wonder how we would react if the writing were on the wall like that here. Would we quit? Or would we perhaps accommodate ourselves to the new ways?

"… I am reminded of something Justice Michael Kirby said in the 2004 case of Coleman v Power: 'One might wish for more rationality, less superficiality, diminished invective and increased logic and persuasion in political discourse. But those of that view must find another homeland. From its earliest history, Australian politics has regularly included insult and emotion, calumny and invective, in its armoury of persuasion. They are part and parcel of the struggle of ideas.

"… As former NSW chief justice Spigelman made clear at ceremonies admitting lawyers to practice, Australian lawyers are the inheritors of a great legal tradition. In the absence of the Roman general’s slave, we need to whisper to ourselves once in a while that this tradition, like the men and women who forged it, will not live forever unless we’re careful to protect it."

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