Vol 22 No 11

04 June 2012


 

  • EUREKA STREET TV

    Michael Kirby on sexuality and churches

    • Peter Kirkwood
    • 15 June 2012
    14 Comments

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Lay off the Gina Rinehart fat attack

    • Moira Rayner
    • 15 June 2012
    33 Comments

    My first secretary later worked for Rinehart, and never had a harsher word to say other than she was 'an unusual lady'. She must have been raised by a mum, like mine, who said if you can't find something nice to say, don't say anything. Good advice for anyone deriding Rinehart for her 'unattractiveness'.

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  • EUREKA STREET TV

    Michael Kirby on sexuality and churches

    • Peter Kirkwood
    • 15 June 2012

    'My partner Johan gives me a rough time. He says the church has always been horrible to gays; why do you have anything to do with it? But I don't want any old gent in frocks to take my religion from me.' Former High Court Justice Kirby is a practicing Christian and one of Australia's best known openly homosexual citizens. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Peter Steele's hymns in sickness

    • Andrew Bullen
    • 14 June 2012
    8 Comments

    'Monday is Day Oncology, where the dark burses arrive by courier, and we're glad to see them stripped for action, hooked in the air, lucent against fear.' Maybe only Steele could see these bags of chemo as Christological signs. As with the zoo once, so now the oncology ward offers hints of that other eden.

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  • EDUCATION

    Teachers are wrong about performance pay

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 14 June 2012
    19 Comments

    The Victorian Government plans to introduce performance pay for teachers. The teachers' union has objected on the grounds that teachers are special. Its argument is faulty. Performance pay is not wrong for teachers because they are special, but because it is wrong for everybody.

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  • CARTOON

    Abbott's doomsday prophet

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 13 June 2012
    1 Comment

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Sex, drugs and Patrick White

    • Patti Miller
    • 13 June 2012
    14 Comments

    I once received a postcard from White and his partner Manoly Lascaris. It responded to a note I had sent to White telling him we had named our new baby son Patrick Manoly. Our son is now a young man who occasionally wonders if he is the only bloke in Australia to be named after a gay couple.

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  • RELIGION

    'Jesuit' James Joyce's Church challenge

    • Philip Harvey
    • 13 June 2012
    24 Comments

    One character sings a risqué satire called 'The Ballad of Joking Jesus'. Another wanders into a church and misinterprets the liturgy to comic effect. The puritanical Catholic hierarchy were offended, but Joyce's seemingly anti-religious novels would not exist in their final form were it not for his Jesuit education.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Sympathy for the dodgy salesmen of Australian politics

    • Zac Alstin
    • 12 June 2012
    34 Comments

    Duplicity in politics is not new. Every utterance is tainted by the subtext of scoring points. If it is painful for us to listen, how much worse must it be for the politicians? It is dispiriting to constantly undermine one's own integrity, and the 'dodgy salesman' is no one's ideal of human flourishing.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Vietnam mates' post-war suicides

    • Karl Cameron-Jackson
    • 12 June 2012
    9 Comments

    My dad and his RSL mates repeatedly told us 'Vietnam was a toy-boy war, only 501 died' as though numbers are a marker of grief. My tears often fall in an unremitting flood for eight mates who committed suicide soon after they arrived back home.

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  • RELIGION

    Feminists and gay Christians who accept the Church

    • Kristina Keneally
    • 08 June 2012
    59 Comments

    Recently Catherine Deveny tweeted that my claim to be a Catholic and a feminist showed I was 'suffering serious cognitive dissonance'. Many gay Christians are confronted by a similar lack of understanding from non-believers who can't understand why they would embrace a Church that rejects them.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Lingerie football's naked sexism

    • Catherine Marshall
    • 08 June 2012
    18 Comments

    The largely positive response in Australia to the American Lingerie Football League reveals we are not the progressively egalitarian people we imagine ourselves to be. We give lip service to female equality, but women will still be exploited whenever the opportunity arises, and feminists vilified like it's 1972.

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  • MEDIA

    The feminist diet

    • Ellena Savage
    • 08 June 2012
    3 Comments

    Squeezing my own body fat in front of the mirror is a horrible, but familiar experience. Reflecting on the self-loathing involved makes me red with rage and embarrassment. I should be above that. Today's women are united more by their collective disgust of their bodies than they are by any other factor.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Intimate study of a failing marriage

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 07 June 2012
    3 Comments

    A group of women debate whether familiarity with a long-term spouse is not better than the passion of a new relationship. Everything new gets old, argues one woman. Take This Waltz is a kind of morality play about a woman torn between the familiarity of the old and the excitement of the new.

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  • RELIGION

    Politics played as holy comedy in Cambodia

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 07 June 2012
    5 Comments

    Meetings between holiness and politics are inherently dramatic. Think of Jesus' trial, of A'Beckett's murder, of Luther at Worms, of Romero's last sermon. These were tragedies. In Fr Pierre Ceyrac, a French Jesuit priest who died last week, politics and holiness met dramatically, but as comedy.

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  • RELIGION

    What gay parents are worth

    • Frank Brennan
    • 07 June 2012
    135 Comments

    When Joe Hockey said on Q&A that the 'very best circumstances' for a child entailed having 'a mother and a father', Penny Wong, who has a child with her partner Sophie Allouache, replied 'I know what my family is worth.' It was a galvanising moment in the same sex marriage debate, which is not going away.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Poverty's skanky tarts

    • Barry Gittins
    • 06 June 2012
    11 Comments

    Poverty is the unpaid rent of 200 years of colonisation. Poverty leaves a kid to her own solitary devices in the corner of a one-bedroom unit. It is pensioners eating canned excuses for a decent meal. Poverty is what happens when I don't care about you and you don't give a toss about me.

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  • CARTOON

    Eddie Mabo's struggle

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 06 June 2012

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Mystery of the pro-Rudd Coalition voters

    • John Warhurst
    • 06 June 2012
    18 Comments

    A Herald/Neilsen poll this week showed that Rudd leads Gillard by 62 per cent to 32 per cent. But that figure is distorted by the overwhelming pro-Rudd preference of Coalition voters, who prefer Rudd to Gillard by 71 per cent to 19 per cent. The motivation behind this preference is not immediately clear.

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  • MEDIA

    How to tame free speech extremists

    • John Wright
    • 05 June 2012
    11 Comments

    'I still believe in global warming. Do you?' These words graced a Chicaco billboard above an image of 'Unabomber' Ted Kaczynski. It was removed, not because it broke any law, but because it was deemed to have 'gone too far'. In a society that supports free speech, who decides how far is too far?' 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Church's preferential option for kids

    • Brian Doyle
    • 05 June 2012
    5 Comments

    'No matter what we say it's about, it's about kids,' says the archbishop. 'If it's not about kids then it's not first priority. The worst sins ever committed are against kids. That will never occur again, not here, not if I have anything to do with it.'

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A helicopter view of the Gillard Government

    • Jill Sutton
    • 04 June 2012
    26 Comments

    It is foolish to focus on the detail of one scandalous union funds abuse, the misbehaviour of another high profile government official and the impact of some new progressive taxes on our personal lives, while ignoring the government's significant achievements under the most trying political circumstances.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Coalition of the willing targets messenger Assange

    • Michael Mullins
    • 04 June 2012
    14 Comments

    The US pursuit of Assange is being played out with the cooperation of other western democracies. Last week a British court rejected his appeal against extradition to Sweden. The UK government could overrule this, as it did for Chilean dictator Pinochet in 1998. But it looks as if they won't repeat the favour for Assange.

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