Colin Mason

Colin Victor James Mason (28 October 1926 – 18 July 2020)[1] was a New Zealand-born Australian journalist, author and politician.

Colin Mason
Senator for New South Wales
In office
1 July 1978 – 5 June 1987
Personal details
Born(1926-10-28)28 October 1926
Auckland, New Zealand
Died18 July 2020(2020-07-18) (aged 93)
Wahroonga, New South Wales, Australia
NationalityNew Zealand Australian
Political partyAustralian Democrats
OccupationJournalist, author

Mason worked for 14 years as the first foreign correspondent of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation[2] and became deeply involved in Asian affairs. In 1968, he wrote Dragon Army, a popular history of Asian communism.[3]

He joined the Australia Party and rose to become its national convener (1976). He joined the Australian Democrats and was elected to the Senate at the 1977 election as a senator for New South Wales. He and Don Chipp (Victoria) were the first two Australian Democrats elected to the Senate, although Janine Haines (South Australia) had earlier been appointed to a casual vacancy.

He was re-elected at the 1983 double-dissolution election for a three-year term, and again at the 1984 election for a three-year term ending on 30 June 1988.[4] He retired in 1987 when another double-dissolution election was called.

He later wrote A Short History of Asia (2000),[5] concerning imperialism and the modern history of many individual countries in Asia.

In 2003, Mason released The 2030 Spike: Countdown to Global Catastrophe, in which he describes a confluence of six 'drivers' that he argues will converge in the decade of 2030: depleted fuel supplies, massive population growth, poverty, global climate change, famine, growing water shortages and international lawlessness. He describes more than 100 steps to be taken to mitigate this convergence, including a form of world government. In 2006 he released a revised edition, A Short History Of The Future: Surviving the 2030 Spike[6] A copy of The 2030 Spike was found among 39 English-language books in the compound where Osama bin Laden was killed.[7]

Mason died in July 2020.[8]


  • 1965. Dragon Army: The Pattern of Communist Expansion Through Asia., Horwitz Publications
  • 1977. The View from Peking: An Account of the Chinese People Today, Angus & Robertson, ISBN 0-207-95735-5
  • 2000. A Short History of Asia: Stone Age to 2000 AD, St. Martin's Press, ISBN 978-0-312-23060-9
  • 2003. The 2030 Spike: Countdown to Global Catastrophe, Earthscan Publications, ISBN 1-84407-018-2
  • 2006. A Short History of the Future: Surviving the 2030 Spike, Earthscan Publications, ISBN 978-1-84407-346-7


  1. ^ Smith, Tony. "CONDOLENCES - Mason, Mr Colin Victor James". Hansard. Parliament of Australia. Retrieved 27 August 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "ABC Radio National". Archived from the original on 11 May 2020. Retrieved 28 October 2007.
  3. ^ Hewat T and Wilson D Don Chipp Visa, Victoria (1978), p. 102.
  4. ^ Record of NSW count, 1984, Psephos
  5. ^ Mason C 2005 "A Short History of Asia", Palgrave Macmillan, New York (2nd edn.--First edn appeared in 2000)
  6. ^ Mason, C. (2006) A Short History of the Future: Surviving the 2030 Spike Earthscan, London (2006), 320pp
  7. ^ Bin Laden's Bookshelf, English Language Books, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, 19 January 2017
  8. ^ "Farewell Colin Mason, the ABC's first man in Asia". Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

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