Vol 18 No 23

10 November 2008


 

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Comradely with Ginsberg

    • Philip Harvey
    • 21 November 2008

    Although not a beat poem, a Peter Steele poem shares Ginsberg's aesthetic of the poem as measure of breath. Breath is commanding like an original lecture, enspiriting like a true sermon, propulsive like a perfect dinner conversation.

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  • RELIGION

    Vatican over-indulgence with incentive pay

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 21 November 2008
    3 Comments

    'About half' was Pope John XXIII's reply to a visitor who asked how many people worked in the Vatican. The Vatican is reportedly updating its employment practices by offering incentive payments based on performance. But these devalue work and represent it purely as a financial transaction.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    TPV holders stuck in Howard time warp

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 20 November 2008
    1 Comment

    The Rudd Government's abolition of the Temporary Protection Visa on 9 August was a source of deep hope for refugees and their supporters. However the new rule has not yet been applied to many older cases, and there is no pressure on officials to act quickly.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The dead walk among the living

    • Barry Gittins
    • 20 November 2008

    There are no soothing words to truly quieten deep pain, but Fugitive Pieces shows redemption is a possibility, even in the face of undying memories.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    What it's like to be hit by a bullet

    • Brian Doyle
    • 19 November 2008
    4 Comments

    When you get hit by a bullet you never ever forget what it feels like. It feels like you got hit with the biggest rock there ever was. We were going along in the boat and we went around a beach where there was a battle, and a slug hit me in the armpit and knocked me right over.

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  • EDUCATION

    Judging the quality of education

    • Fatima Measham
    • 19 November 2008
    9 Comments

    Forcing schools to produce information on students' exam performance will never be a reliable strategy for lifting numeracy and literacy. Learning is as much about taking risks and failing as it is about getting the answers right the first time.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A linguist's vision for multicultural Australia

    • Michael Clyne
    • 18 November 2008
    6 Comments

    Bilingualism trains the mind and encourages more flexible problem solving. Such qualities go unnoticed in a society with a strong monolingual mindset. Social inclusion policy must also move beyond the socioeconomic dimension to prevent the exclusion of significant sections of Australian society.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Two computer poems

    • Michelle O'Connor | Tammy Ho Lai-Ming
    • 18 November 2008
    1 Comment

    It would have to be the world-wide web... wouldn't it? ... But you wouldn't call it hubris, would you?

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  • AUSTRALIA

    God hates fags and bankers

    • Michael Mullins
    • 17 November 2008
    5 Comments

    Senator John McCain's gracious concession speech this month recalled an era when hate was the norm. Big bankers are now being targeted with hate the has been inflicted on gays and other marginalised Americans, but there are better ways to heal America.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Economic troubles will not ease climate pain

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 17 November 2008
    4 Comments

    As individuals, we can make a difference through symbolic actions that embolden governments to take big steps. The financial crisis and the urgent needs of threatened island nations need to be factored into a calculation that ensures burdens fall most heavily on those most able to bear them.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The small world of lobbyists and the Rudd Government

    • John Warhurst
    • 14 November 2008

    Qantas' new chief lobbyist is the Prime Minister's recent former chief of staff. The appointment mocks the spirit of the Government's new Lobbying Code of Conduct, demonstrating that corporate money can buy special access to government.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    More than Sex and Bloody Soccer

    • Paul Collins
    • 14 November 2008
    2 Comments

    SBS television has been called many things, including the 'sexual broadcasting service', because of the risqué foreign language films that it shows. SBS radio is the ultimate melting pot, a symbol of an inclusive Australian multiculturalism in which different languages and cultures are respected.

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  • MEDIA

    Australia's dubious common ground with India

    • Kimberley Layton
    • 13 November 2008
    9 Comments

    India is very proud of the fact that it is one of the few Asian examples of a deeply rooted democratic system. Just ask them about it - they'll tell you. Australians too seem quietly smug. So it's surprising that we rank only 28th in the 2008 Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The fear detective

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 13 November 2008
    3 Comments

    The Edmund Rice Centre's Phil Glendenning is is the ordinary gruff Australian bloke abroad - a Merv Hughes or an Ian Chappell, not naturally articulate but enduring and not to be fobbed off with smooth talk. His silent listening is the moral centre of this powerful SBS TV documentary about returned asylum seekers.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Standing up for students' rites

    • Brian McCoy
    • 12 November 2008
    7 Comments

    Media exposure of some students' controversial end-of-school celebrations revealed a cultural deficit. Aboriginal men experience rituals that support their transition from boyhood into adulthood. Rituals in Western society are less clear.

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  • RELIGION

    Obama's Dream at the Lincoln Memorial

    • Frank Brennan
    • 11 November 2008
    10 Comments

    The great orator Obama is yet to put real shape on his message of change and hope. Should he harness the good will he has evoked across traditional boundaries and be granted a second term, he will be able to mount those steps at the Lincoln Memorial on the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and proclaim to the world, 'Yes we can, because we have a dream'.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Familiar fiddler man

    • Max Richards
    • 11 November 2008
    1 Comment

    Old colleague, McCann.. (philosophy, retired), still with the sad face and the gaberdine mac.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The banker who'd played the gentleman's game

    • John Honner
    • 10 November 2008
    3 Comments

    My favourite banker was Peter May, graceful batsman and cautious captain of the English cricket team in the late 1950s and early 1960s. He once broke his umbrella on the way to work, playing an imaginary cover drive at an imaginary fast bowler.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Priceless overseas health professionals

    • Michael Mullins
    • 09 November 2008
    12 Comments

    The case of a Perth midwife has come to light two weeks after that of Dr Bernhard Moeller of Horsham in Victoria. Both are highly valued overseas-born health professioals who have been denied permanent residency because of the burden on the public purse associated with caring for their Down syndrome children.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    New Zealand's dim new world

    • Cecily McNeill
    • 09 November 2008
    8 Comments

    Kiwi voters opted at the weekend for political newcomer John Key, over the steady management style of longtime leader Helen Clark. They may look back on the Clark days with nostalgia when they discover the new administration is most concerned with pleasing blue-chip investors.

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