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  • AUSTRALIA

    Foreign policy beyond asylum seeker silliness

    • Evan Ellis
    • 15 August 2013
    1 Comment

    We might get lucky. Malcolm Turnbull might be right, and the mass of egos, grievances and interests that make up US-Sino relations might 'evolve into a new order, without either side having to make concessions to the other'. But the risks are growing. In this context the framing of asylum seekers as a threat to our sovereignty seems plain silly. War between China and the US would be a disaster to our national interests.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Crying chairs' cold comfort for refugees

    • Lyn Bender
    • 23 July 2013
    5 Comments

    I watched the 'crying chairs' from my psychology clinic disappear into the truck. Many people over the years had nestled in one of those voluminous chairs and wept, whispered, or shouted their rage, sorrow and despair. Now it was time to leave my counselling office so I surrendered my sturdy armchairs for a greater good.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Royal baby's semi-charmed life

    • Catherine Marshall
    • 23 July 2013
    15 Comments

    For all the intrusions this tiny prince will have to endure in the years that stretch ahead, there will exist, as a salve of sorts, the incalculable benefits that his social status has randomly afforded him. We shouldn't diminish the joy of the royal couple, but we should be wary of allowing our sustained and fawning attention to further entrench the idea that some people are inherently more valuable than others.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Facts alone won't save Australia's fatuous political agenda

    • Michael Mullins
    • 14 July 2013
    12 Comments

    It is pleasing that PolitiFact is able to demonstrate that foreign minister Bob Carr's claim that boat people 'are not people fleeing persecution ... they are coming here as economic migrants' is 'mostly false'. But even if Carr's claim was mostly true, how does discussion of the comparatively small number of economic migrants justify its place on the agenda, compared with issues such as the mental health of Australia's youth? 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Moved and confused by church in a tent

    • Brian Doyle
    • 08 July 2013
    6 Comments

    Religions are mesmerised and ruined by power but always pregnant with the possibility of humility. They are so easy to ignore. You'd be wise to sneer, with every reason imaginable for the curl of your knowing lip. Yet here I am, on Sunday morning, in the wedding reception tent, agog; not so much at the earnest idiot of a minister, but at everyone, sweetly, else.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Sex is to pregnancy what racism is to genocide

    • Ellena Savage
    • 06 June 2013
    10 Comments

    This past fortnight, race has been high on the agenda. Can a 13-year-old be racist? Is what Eddie McGuire said racist? Meanwhile, revelations that police officers in one Melbourne suburb had printed and distributed 50 racist stubby holders hinted at a frightening culture of racialised violence. The reality is that racial violence is inextricable from racist language.

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  • ECONOMICS

    How financial devils came to rule the universe

    • David James
    • 04 June 2013
    7 Comments

    Religious authorities may not spend a lot of time pondering the nature of global financial systems, but the Pope's recent comment that 'money has to serve, not rule' suggests it can be useful when they do. Given scope to become rule makers, rather than just people who know how to exploit the rules, financiers have moved themselves to a position of mastery.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    On the brink of native title history as Mabo comes of age

    • Paul Newbury
    • 02 June 2013
    3 Comments

    The Mabo decision of 3 June 1992 changed the course of Australian history and set the blueprint for native title determinations. Twenty-one years on, the Noongar people of Australia's south west are on the threshold of achieving the most momentous and comprehensive outcome to date of the native title process.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The best and worst of local government

    • Moira Rayner
    • 09 May 2013
    5 Comments

    At its best local government lifts the vision of its people from NIMBY-ism and road maintenance to a sense of community and attachment. But Australians are now so disengaged from politicians state and federal that the timing of Gillard's announcement of a referendum on local government could do more harm than good.

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  • MEDIA

    Catholic communicators navigating new media

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 06 May 2013
    1 Comment

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Frantic chat on the world wide spider web

    • Various
    • 29 April 2013
    3 Comments

    And in the raucosity of blogs, the avidity of trolls, the ubiquity of porn, the vidvidvidity of tubes, the facebookery of profiles, the aviary of twittervation — can the mind still find that space to stretch itself?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Film takes sex abuse guilt to the Vatican

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 20 March 2013
    8 Comments

    Fr Murphy's atrocities include using the confessional as a lair in which to abuse his deaf students. With the Royal Commission already gathering steam, Silence in the House of God warns what revelations may be to come, and reminds those with high hopes for Pope Francis how much work remains to be done.

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