Vol 25 No 5

17 March 2015


 

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Cricket's assault on Australian racism

    • Brian Matthews
    • 26 March 2015
    11 Comments

    During the West Indies 1960-61 tour of Australia, Frank Worrell and his predominantly black team transfixed Australians from coast to coast and, without any missionary intent, struck a resounding blow at the White Australia Policy, which was still in place. This jubilant, exciting story prompts questions about today's masses, who enthusiastically support harsh, and arguably racist, treatment of asylum seekers.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    How super hurts the poor and middle income earners

    • Brian Toohey
    • 26 March 2015
    6 Comments

    Although the age pension will cost about $49 billion in 2017-18, it is means tested. In contrast, superannuation concessions are heavily biased in favour of high income earners. Both sides of politics pander to the wealthy and the cosseted finance sector, which want certainty that nothing will stand in the way of their super bonanza.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Protestant and Catholic corruption in 1971 Belfast

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 25 March 2015
    2 Comments

    At the height of the Troubles in Belfast, a young British soldier becomes separated from his unit and spends a night lost in one of the city's most dangerous locales. The city is fractured along numerous lines: it's not merely Catholic versus Protestant; the radicalised youths of the Provisional IRA are at odds with their established forebears. Rarely have the Troubles been so grippingly portrayed.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Mannix, master conjurer in the cause of the underdog

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 25 March 2015
    15 Comments

    Daniel Mannix, who was Catholic Archbishop of Melbourne 1917-63, knew how to control an audience and shift the perception of events. He argued fiercely against conscription in the 1917 Referendum, and railed against the exploitation of struggling workers. On finishing his new biography, I imagined a meeting between him and Pope Francis, both masters of public symbols with a disdain for church clericalism and sanctimonious speech.

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  • CARTOON

    The burials

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 24 March 2015
    2 Comments

    View this week's offering from Eureka Street's award winning political cartoonist.

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  • EUREKA STREET TV

    Behind Pope Francis' teaching about the poor

    • Peter Kirkwood
    • 24 March 2015
    7 Comments

    A hallmark of Francis' papacy has been his calls for 'a Church which is poor and for the poor'. He has given new currency to the sometimes controversial concept 'preferential option for the poor', which has strong associations with Liberation Theology. Sydney theologian Rohan Curnow recently completed his PhD thesis and a book on the history and application of the 'preferential option'.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Stepping on to mandatory data retention's slippery slope

    • Fatima Measham
    • 24 March 2015
    6 Comments

    Mandatory data retention was a bad idea when it was originally floated during a Gillard Government inquiry. It is a worse idea now, and is set to become law for political reasons, not because it has been properly scrutinised. There are important questions that we should be asking, and we should not let ourselves be put off from doing this if we don’t know the difference between data and metadata (there is none).

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Paying tribute without creating war narratives

    • Justin Glyn
    • 23 March 2015
    9 Comments

    The emotional parades welcoming troops home from the end of 'Operation Slipper' in Afghanistan leave us contemplating the horrific effects of war on veterans and their families. It is absolutely right, indeed imperative, that we grieve with them and count the costs. In doing so, however, we should beware the danger of selective empathy.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    In memory of Leo

    • Diane Fahey
    • 23 March 2015
    8 Comments

    'If I'm deported back to Sri Lanka, torture is certain because I'm a Tamil.' On the day I hear of Leo's death I pass a tall maple, its star-like leaves, blood-red and flame-red, irradiated. The Australian government refused the visas applied for by Leo's family so that they might attend his funeral. As three Tamil men at a microphone sing a long hymn in Tamil the Basilica fills with an undertow of sound.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Australia no longer a global Good Samaritan

    • Michael Mullins
    • 22 March 2015
    6 Comments

    It's a pity that Australia's ongoing emergency aid to other nations was tainted by the Prime Minister's suggestion Indonesia should grant clemency to Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran because Australia had provided $1 billion after the 2004 tsunami. Now that Vanuatu has been devastated by Cyclone Pam, its people and government might wonder what we expect in exchange for our $5 million initial commitment and promised follow up assistance in the form of medical staff and rescue personnel.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The enigma of Malcolm Fraser

    • Frank Brennan
    • 22 March 2015
    17 Comments

    Through the rough and tumble of politics, Fraser helped the country find true north on issues relating to race and human rights. His friendship with Gough Whitlam has been one of the great signs in Australian public life that human decency and shared commitment to noble ideals can transcend even the most entrenched political animosities cultivated across the despatch box. May he rest in peace.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Inside the head of an IS martyr

    • Ellena Savage
    • 19 March 2015
    13 Comments

    The language of martyrdom is being used to recruit young Australians to brutal stateless warfare. Because martyrs are morally superior to suburban burnouts. IS propagandist Abu Ismail described Melburnian Jake Bilardi as 'a lion on the battlefield although he was at a young age and with a weak body'. So, Bilardi was a weak young lion and therefore ripe for battle. How obscene!

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Emboldened Netanyahu maintains hard line against US-Iran deal

    • Tony Kevin
    • 19 March 2015
    6 Comments

    In coming days, a major US-Iran negotiation will conclude in success or failure. As long as the US and Iran remain opposed, the US is much less effective in working for peace and inter-communal harmony in Iraq and Syria. Israel is indifferent to these wider concerns and, fresh from this week's convincing election vistory, a newly invigorated Benjamin Netanyahu will continue to stress that the Iranian nuclear issue is ‘existential’ for Israel.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Ode to the death of hippie idealism

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 18 March 2015
    2 Comments

    In 1993 Joaquin Phoenix's brother, River, died of a drug overdose, in front of a club owned by Johnny Depp. Depp later starred in an adaptation of Hunter S. Thompson's drug-addled Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, prompting one film critic to wonder how Depp could see much humour in the material. One might now be tempted to ask the same question of Phoenix, who was present during his brother's fatal overdose.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Confessions of a grumpy old man

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 18 March 2015
    18 Comments

    It is becoming common to describe people who offer political, economic and cultural comment in the mainstream media as Grumpy Old Men. It is a nice insult that warms the hearts of those of us whose commentary is confined to the fringe media. 'But, wait a moment', my inner self interrupts, 'Are you really so very different?' To blot out the sound of silent scepticism, I rush on, 'There is Grumpy and grumpy. There is surely a difference ...'.

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  • CARTOON

    Mr Fixit

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 17 March 2015
    1 Comment

    View this week's offering from Eureka Street's award winning political cartoonist.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Political roadblock stalls remote kidney disease treatment

    • Brian Stacey
    • 17 March 2015
    6 Comments

    In 2011 the Commonwealth set aside $10 million for the NT Government to provide for dialysis patients from remote communities in Central Australia. But the funds remain in the Commonwealth’s bank account, while the need is acute. Community organisations and others including Vinnies and Caritas are helping, but it’s shameful that the needs of one of Australia’s most vulnerable groups are still unmet long after funding has been allocated.  

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    In love with Sooty

    • Peta Edmonds
    • 17 March 2015
    10 Comments

    She waits for me to get home at night. She meows at the door, and when I return gets under my feet. Sooty has been one of the best things to come into my life. I get entranced by her eyes, and I'm in love with her softness. Now I don't talk to myself, I talk to her. One week, when I was so poor, I spent the last of my money on her, on cat toys and a can of cat food and chicken drumsticks.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Young people not supported after they leave care

    • Philip Mendes
    • 16 March 2015
    2 Comments

    There are currently two national inquiries into the experiences of children in out-of-home care. Yet neither is specifically exploring what happens to young people transitioning from care. This is like a football team putting in a good performance in the first half but neglecting the second, which decides the outcome.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Never forget the actual St Patrick

    • Brian Doyle
    • 16 March 2015
    10 Comments

    A courage that could not be crushed, an imagination That could not be imprisoned, a song sung anywhere Free people insist on telling their own wild holy tales.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Blessed are the taxpayers in Abbott's Australia

    • Neil Ormerod
    • 15 March 2015
    39 Comments

    In relation to the future of remote Aboriginal communities in WA, the Prime Minister said: 'It is not the job of the taxpayer to subsidise particular lifestyle choices.'  The statement raises this question: on whose behalf does the government govern? The logical response is: the taxpayer. We must then ask whether it works on a sliding scale – the more tax you pay, the more the government attends to your needs.  

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Medicare co-payment failed to understand illness as a relationship

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 12 March 2015
    8 Comments

    The Medicare co-payment was not accepted because it was seen as an altogether naked attempt by the Government to control health expenditure without concern for people and their relationships. Chronically ill people move from ordinary human society into the impersonal world of medical science and health bureaucracy, and their condition involves testing changes in relationships, both at a personal level and with institutions.  

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