Vol 22 No 13

02 July 2012


 

  • EUREKA STREET TV

    Interfaith guru's 9/11 moment

    • Peter Kirkwood
    • 13 July 2012
    4 Comments

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  • AUSTRALIA

    International Criminal Court's African bias

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 13 July 2012
    3 Comments

    On Tuesday, the International Criminal Court sentenced Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga Dyilo for his use of child soldiers. It is the first sentence handed down by an institution regarded by many as a political front. As one Congolese official noted, 'You'll never see an American pass before the ICC. All of the accused are Africans.'

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  • EUREKA STREET TV

    Interfaith guru's 9/11 moment

    • Peter Kirkwood
    • 13 July 2012

    'I was in London on the day of the 2005 bombs. It was my 9/11 moment and had a profound impact on me. I wanted to do something constructive afterwards, so I had the idea of asking people of different faiths for their favourite prayer.' Ros Bradley is the editor of two books of prayers from all the major religious traditions.

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  • MEDIA

    Justifying garden-variety torture

    • Max Atkinson
    • 12 July 2012
    6 Comments

    Any discussion of the morality of torture must distinguish two kinds of justification. The first is concerned with cases so exotic they have nothing to do with the ordinary affairs of mankind, such as the nuclear bomb ticking away in a New York basement. A real-life justification must provide a rationale for a wide range of common garden cases. 

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  • EDUCATION

    Battle for the 21st century classroom

    • Dean Ashenden
    • 12 July 2012
    15 Comments

    The classroom — one teacher, one group of students, usually of the same age, one rectangular space, door closed — is the great survivor of schooling. It has been depicted as a contest between 'teacher-centred' and 'student-centred' pedagogies. But in the age of technology there is a new contender for dominance in the classroom.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Divorce, sexuality and the cult of self-improvement

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 12 July 2012
    2 Comments

    The therapist's office is a place where frankness is imperative, and self-examination an artform. Among the current batch of patients are a displaced Indian widower, and a gay teen with a self-destructive streak. The audience is left to ponder whether the doctor or the patient is the more deeply disturbed.

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  • CARTOON

    Abbott's asylum seeker gospel

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 11 July 2012
    11 Comments

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Little Adonis and the fruit box

    • Helena Kadmos
    • 11 July 2012
    21 Comments

    When my father was born his parents named him Adonis, but for the first few years he was called Adonaki, Little Adonis. I picture him standing in the classroom on a fruit box, with his dark curly hair. His hair is still curly if it gets long enough, but it is very soft and silvery. He listens as I read this story to him and he wants to set some things straight.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Trading fears for tears in complex asylum seeker debate

    • Fatima Measham
    • 11 July 2012
    16 Comments

    The tear-shedding in parliament over people drowning near our northwest coast was astonishing. In a decade that has seen asylum seekers demonised by policymakers, the reversal was nearly comical: asylum seekers, it turns out, are human beings. It illustrates how poorly the question of asylum has been discussed since 2001.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The epiphanies of our lives

    • B.N. Oakman
    • 10 July 2012
    4 Comments

    I want  you to list the epiphanies in your lives, says the lecturer. We'll build poems around them...  I ponder, but cannot manage to think of one. Does he really believe people have several? My extra years are like binoculars peered through from the wrong end, shrinking past significance to present inconsequence.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    History curriculum perpetuates East Timor myths

    • Susan Connelly
    • 10 July 2012
    7 Comments

    The draft senior secondary history curriculum glosses over Australia's relationship with East Timor. It needs to go beyond the false media and political view that Australia's involvement in East Timor has been unremittingly courageous, generous and exemplary. There is a danger that students will believe Australian soldiers went into Portuguese Timor in 1941 'to protect the Timorese' and that Australia 'saved' East Timor in 1999.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Politics in the pulpit

    • Aloysious Mowe
    • 09 July 2012
    35 Comments

    ‘I don’t think politics should be brought into the pulpit,’ said the gentleman who waited for me at the church door after all the other mass-goers at Sunday’s 8:30 am Mass had departed. ‘You upset my wife: she wanted to walk out during your homily.’

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Australia's ad hoc refugee rescue costs many lives

    • Tony Kevin
    • 09 July 2012
    21 Comments

    When distress calls come from asylum seeker boats, Australia's current policy is to rescue by choice. Many of the calls come from the Indonesian search and rescue region. To its credit, Australia usually responds to these calls. But not always. Sometimes we pass them to the less well equipped Indonesian search and rescue authority BASARNAS and wait to see what happens.

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  • EDUCATION

    50 years since Australia's 'most poisonous debate'

    • John Warhurst
    • 09 July 2012
    10 Comments

    Labor speechwriter Graham Freudenberg observed that ‘the oldest, deepest, most poisonous debate in Australia has been about government aid to church schools’. The most dramatic episode in the history of church state relations in Australia was the Goulburn schools strike, which took place 50 years ago this month.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The struggle to resist linguistic empires

    • Ellena Savage
    • 06 July 2012
    10 Comments

    Letting languages disappear is a crime against humanity, asserted a recent article. But reader comments shouted that if a language could not keep up – or rather, if the language was not English – it should die, die, die, as though it were a simple matter of natural selection.

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  • RELIGION

    Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders in Australia's Constitution

    • Frank Brennan
    • 06 July 2012
    8 Comments

    Most Australians would agree that it’s time to free the Constitution from all vestiges of racial discrimination. For this, it needs an amendment affirming the status as Indigenous Australians as equal citizens. But in the current political climate, a referendum is unlikely to produce the necessary super majority of electors in four of the six states voting in favour.

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  • RELIGION

    Crisis of trust in the Vatican

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 05 July 2012
    34 Comments

    The many bad stories about the Vatican raise questions about how central authority is exercised. Some critics focus on arrogance and misbehaviour there in the way that others see these behaviours in News Limited, the Greens, the Unions, and elsewhere. To address the way people in any organisation behave, you must first understand why they act as they do.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Fatherhood philosophy gets infertility treatment

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 05 July 2012
    3 Comments

    Young playboy Jonah learns he has testicular cancer and will be infertile within a matter of weeks. His only shot at biological fatherhood is to get a woman pregnant, soon. Initially there is a glib desperation to this veritably existential quest. But Jonah soon appreciates that parenthood is not something to be entered into lightly.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Blasting Tony Windsor out of New England

    • John Warhurst
    • 04 July 2012
    6 Comments

    The Nationals have made their first big play for the next federal election. The recruitment of NSW state independent Richard Torbay to challenge New England incumbent Tony Windsor is either a masterstroke or a revealing insight into their problems and weaknesses as a regional and rural political party.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    East Germany's angel of peace

    • Donna Mulhearn
    • 04 July 2012
    6 Comments

    In her tweed skirt and sensible shoes, 60-something church elder, Sigrid, doesn’t look like a revolutionary. She carries neither iPhone nor gun. But revolutionary she is, having been at the heart of a movement that toppled an oppressive regime, thawed the Cold War and brought down the Berlin Wall.

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  • CARTOON

    The political performer

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 04 July 2012
    3 Comments

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The dubious removal of Paraguay's former bishop president

    • Rodrigo Acuña
    • 03 July 2012
    6 Comments

    The recent ouster of Paraguay’s left-wing president Fernando Lugo probably broke some type of world record. Having had just two hours to prepare his defence, the leader who was once 'Bishop of the poor' described his impeachment as a 'parliamentary coup d’état'. He had a point.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Peter Steele's seven types of ingenuity

    • Philip Harvey
    • 03 July 2012
    7 Comments

    More than once I observed him walking from the Medley Building of the University of Melbourne to Newman College reading a book, not looking up. It was the book leading the human through the everyday world. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    To exhilarate their minds

    • Peter Steele
    • 03 July 2012
    5 Comments

    Here's the mint still on my hands. A wreath, so Pliny thought was 'good for students, to exhilarate their minds'. Late in the course, I’ll settle for a sprig or two.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Electricity price hike won't give us clean energy

    • Brian Toohey
    • 02 July 2012
    16 Comments

    For most Australians, Government compensation for the carbon tax won't cover the steep rise in the cost of electricity caused by unrelated investment in infrastructure. That was not its intention. But the carbon tax will still not ensure the price of 'dirty' electricity is high enough to make coal-fired generators uncompetitive and force a 'clean energy future'.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Peter Steele's path to something better

    • Michael Kelly
    • 02 July 2012
    10 Comments

    However sunny the greeting, beneath the exterior there lurked in Peter Steele an acute familiarity with the dark side. Nicknamed 'Stainless' early in life, the swashbuckling gait and swaggering style masked all that he knew and felt of life’s grimier parts.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Stronger futures, stolen futures

    • John Falzon
    • 02 July 2012
    4 Comments

    • We passed this law in the night time of your mourning. We listened but you said nothing. We watched but you did nothing for yourselves.• Today we are crying but today and tomorrow, we are ready to take back the future you stole from us. But not with all the love in our bodies and our skies will weever be able to take away the shame from you.

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