Search Results: banks

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  • AUSTRALIA

    No, Mr Hockey, the Budget is not fair

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 18 June 2014
    28 Comments

    Many Australians, myself included, believed that the Federal Budget was unfair. So Treasurer Joe Hockey's recent speech in defence of its fairness offers a welcome challenge. Hockey is right to insist that fairness can co-exist with gradations of wealth within society. But fairness is incompatible with gross disparity of wealth because the concentration of wealth in the hands of few people and corporations destroys equality of opportunity.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Greek neighbour's grace and lemons

    • Nick Gadd
    • 27 May 2014
    5 Comments

    He has two hobbies: playing the bouzouki, and reporting cars for parking infringements. We don't see much of him, but sometimes we hear plunka-plunka-plunk from the other side of the fence. On a night of storms, our gum tree splits and falls, and, at 3am, orange-suited SES men and women climb onto our roof with chainsaws. Our neighbour emerges in a dressing gown, waving his arms. 'Don't damage my lemon tree!'

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    My phone addiction nightmare

    • Isabella Fels
    • 20 May 2014
    2 Comments

    $550 worth of calls on a $69 a month plan seemed like a total dream. I could keep myself hanging on the phone talking to my boyfriend and family all day and night long at my own convenience. I felt a sense of empowerment and freedom that I never felt before ... I woke up screaming over the $700 bill I incurred in just two weeks. What have I done? I felt weak. My future now felt bleak. There was simply no way I could pay it off.

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  • ECONOMICS

    Financial advisers can be more than bookies

    • David James
    • 25 March 2014
    6 Comments

    Removing the requirement that financial advisers act in the best interest of their clients will reveal financial advisers for what they really are: salespeople for the banks' wealth management platforms. Tony Abbott argues that the changes will remove 'red tape' and declaimed: 'We're creating the biggest bonfire of regulations in our country's history.' This is a duplicitous use of language that misunderstands how the finance sector works.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Religious rebels rattle Big Coal's cage

    • Thea Ormerod
    • 18 March 2014
    14 Comments

    The arrest last week of three identifiably religious people drew attention again to Whitehaven's new coal mine site at Maules Creek, in northern NSW. Why did these people of faith feel it was time to put their bodies on the line? Simply put, when the law is fully harnessed to keep in place a system that many consider to be immoral, the most ethical action is peaceful, non-violent disobedience.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Bullying artists and the art of conversation

    • Michael Mullins
    • 16 March 2014
    6 Comments

    Arts minister George Brandis has accused artists of 'bullying' corporate heavyweight Transfield. The artists' recent ultimatum to the board of the Sydney Biennale threatens to kill the event and possibly the entire model of arts sponsorship in Australia. Both sides of the dispute have lost sight of the opportunity that networking between artists and sponsors offers for civilised conversation that leads to a better world for all.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Gifts of blood follow Kunming horror

    • Evan Ellis
    • 06 March 2014
    4 Comments

    My tutor in Kunming was deeply shaken by the mass stabbings last weekend that left 29 civilians dead. When Chinese authorities put out a request for blood donors in the city, giving blood was all she wanted to do. The city's blood banks have struggled to accommodate the throng of willing donors, the upturned arms of ordinary citizens replacing some of the blood spilt by the long knives. This strikes me as profoundly Eucharistic.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Coal hard facts for religious investors

    • Neil Ormerod
    • 10 February 2014
    12 Comments

    The international movement to divest from investment in fossil fuels is gathering momentum. Investors are starting to realise that as governments act to restrain fossil fuel consumption, fossil fuel companies will find their assets being written down. This is particularly pertinent to Australia, the second largest coal exporter. And it raises questions for Australian religious bodies about the prudent and moral use of their resources.

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  • MEDIA

    Exploiting consumers needs to be illegal

    • Michael Mullins
    • 09 February 2014
    7 Comments

    The ANZ Bank faces a huge payout after a class action by its customers secured a partial but significant victory against the bank's unfair and illegal credit card late payment fees. This is happening because we have laws to protect consumers. The Federal Government is well advanced in its efforts to wind back existing and planned laws that protect consumers, as they are considered red tape that places an unnecessary burden on business.

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  • ECONOMICS

    Deciphering capitalism's corrupt metaphors

    • David James
    • 06 February 2014
    15 Comments

    'All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others'. This was George Orwell's parody in Animal Farm of the vicious use of language in communist states. It was one of his memorable depictions of how the absurdities of language not only reflect evil, but also predicate it. Language was a tool of oppression in communist states. In capitalism it is no less vicious.

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  • ECONOMICS

    Don't rob the poor to pay the rich

    • Bruce Duncan
    • 03 February 2014
    14 Comments

    The budget problems are not caused by Newstart or disability pensions, which have been declining as a proportion of economic activity. Had the Howard Government not been so generous with its tax cuts to upper and middle income groups, there would today be no budget deficit.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Best of 2013: My Philippines typhoon fury

    • Fatima Measham
    • 16 January 2014
    1 Comment

    I may have gotten extremely sweary on social media. Part of it was due to gut-deep fear for people to whom I am personally connected, but also generally for a country that runs in my veins. The other part of it was fury that the growing reality of extreme weather events is still being characterised as natural by climate change sceptics who have the luxury of speculating and refuting links outright.

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