Author: Andrew Hamilton

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  • AUSTRALIA

    What a good Australia Day might look like

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 23 January 2019
    1 Comment

    The sound of the didgeridoo would be heard throughout the land. On each street corners buskers would mark out their patch, playing violins, oud, piano accordion, berimbau, nyatiti, cello, mouth organ, zither, anklung or daduk singing the love songs and epic poems from the many civilisations that have enriched Australia.

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  • ECONOMICS

    On banks and bonuses

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 16 January 2019
    6 Comments

    One of the issues raised at the royal commission into banks was the size of salaries and bonuses paid to senior staff. Subsequent discussion has tripped lightly around the issue. The larger question is whether it is in the best interests of financial institutions to offer to its senior officers huge salaries and bonuses.

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  • RELIGION

    Don't knock secular Christmas

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 21 December 2018
    17 Comments

    The point of the involvement of God in the minute details of human life is to assert the value of the human world in all its relationships. This means that the customs and practices of our Australian Christmas should not be dismissed as a corrupted and so inferior version of the Christian celebration. They should be appreciated in their own right.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Confidentiality, Confession and the law

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 12 December 2018
    15 Comments

    Victoria's government has promised legislation to force religious ministers to report information about child sexual abuse received in Confession, and called a royal commission after revelations a lawyer breached the professional duty of confidentiality to clients. The implications of these breaches of confidentiality deserve reflection.

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  • ECONOMICS

    What it will take to redeem the banks

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 05 December 2018
    8 Comments

    Now that the royal commission hearings have finished, people are asking whether things will change. There are grounds for both cautious hope and pessimism. Hope is based on the expectation that the exposure of greed, complacency and lassitude in institutions, boards and regulators will lead them to hunger for a better reputation.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Two sides to Morrison's Rohingya tears

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 28 November 2018
    7 Comments

    Many who are appalled by the sufferings inflicted on people who seek protection in Australia under a policy for whose design and administration Morrison was responsible, saw his tears over the plight of Rohingya refugees as hypocritical. Both Morrison's tears and his critics' varying responses to them merit reflection.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Law works within darkened understanding

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 22 November 2018
    5 Comments

    Debate about the independence and the dignity of the law has always been present. Nevertheless most societies take pains to reinforce trust in those who administer justice. Some elements in our culture, however, put that trust at risk. They deserve reflection.  

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Embracing moral squeamishness

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 15 November 2018
    10 Comments

    What might be effective is to strengthen support within their own and the wider community in order to help vulnerable people understand themselves and the feelings that might drive them to paranoid ideas and violent action if left unattended. If that is moral squeamishness, it at least offers some hope of effectiveness.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Nauru children: Why did we wait so long?

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 03 November 2018
    11 Comments

    To distant observers the hesitation and delay are hard to understand. They ask how it is possible to look on idle and unmoved at children in despair when you are in a position to address the causes of their despair. What is it that enables us to pass by damaged children, untroubled? The answer may lie in the quality of our moral imagination.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Stories that can save your life

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 31 October 2018
    5 Comments

    McGirr's reflection on the callowness of racist attitudes in Australia is deepened by Conrad's novel, which describes a white man's journey into the centre of black Africa to search for an acquaintance. But it also explores the river of exploitation that connects the Nile to the Thames, and situates the heart of darkness in Europe.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Humanity on show in Wentworth aftermath

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 24 October 2018
    7 Comments

    If that is the world of politics then the cooperative energy and the graciousness seen in the Phelps cavalcade and the Liberal candidate are superfluous to requirements. As with refugees despatched to detention, the light and intelligence newly elected MPs bring to Australia will quickly fade from their eyes.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Challenges to respect in the Kavanaugh case

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 17 October 2018
    4 Comments

    The charge brought against Kavanaugh invites reflection on what past actions and allegations should disqualify a person from holding public office. And in a society where increasingly traces of our past actions will be indelibly recorded, what scope should there be for remission and wiping the slate clean of past offences?

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