Search Results: press freedom

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A pope of blurred boundaries

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 08 October 2014
    41 Comments

    Pope Francis is a leader out of his time. In Western society the times are sombre and fearful, and governance emphasises control, security and strong leadership. There is a desire for clear boundaries marking who is in and who is out. The Synod on the Family will  show how far Pope Francis' open and inclusive style can be reflected in the Church's instruments of control.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    What IS has to do with evil

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 01 October 2014
    27 Comments

    IS - the Islamic State - is getting a bad press. Deservedly so, for its brutality and totalitarian instincts. In the headlines, references to 'evil' and 'pure evil' have been dominant. This characterisation is unhelpful for a number of reasons. We must be careful not to empty the word 'evil' of any meaning.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Using the Uber app in the city of brothers

    • Tess Ashton
    • 29 September 2014
    2 Comments

    Our Uber appeared, a black Chevvy sculpture, a mere click of the fingers, from there to here, Denzel Washington, quipped hubby later was the driver, tall as a Pennsylvania night and lustrous as a god.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Hervey Bay boat arrival from Ireland

    • Frank Brennan
    • 21 September 2014
    5 Comments

    Considering my indebtedness to the two Aborigines who met [my family's ship arriving in Hervey Bay from Ireland] 151 years ago, I owe it to all my fellow Australians to agitate these issues of law, morality and politics here in Ireland so that back in Australia, the homeland which, in my religious tradition, was known as the Great South Land of the Holy Spirit.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Liberty and equality's forgotten sibling

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 17 September 2014
    12 Comments

    The way to a better society does not lie simply in defending either liberty or equality, still less in the victory of one of these values over the other. It lies in bringing together a passion both for liberty and for equality and holding them together.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Scotland's brave quest for self-determination

    • Duncan MacLaren
    • 15 September 2014
    31 Comments

    Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s remarks on the Scottish independence debate were front page news in Great Britain. If Mr Abbott had actually visited Scotland rather than follow the advice of the British PM, he would have seen that the whole debate had centred on the kind of society we wanted – one where social justice is paramount, our National Health Service is not privatised and rights are built into a written constitution.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Telling good Kurds from bad

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 04 September 2014
    4 Comments

    A debate about arming, and reinforcing the Kurds, is not an open and shut case. European powers and the United States draw the false distinction that there are good Islamic militants and bad ones, with the bad ones supposedly against the Western military program. The game of backing and supporting misunderstood – and dangerous – groups persists.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Imelda Marcos and the seduction of time

    • Fatima Measham
    • 28 August 2014
    7 Comments

    As the world marks the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearance on August 30, new generations of Filipinos find it hard to grasp what it meant to express dissent when Ferdinand Marcos was president. Some assert that, compared to the current standard of governance and politics, life must have been better under Marcos. Such perceptions are validated when trusted institutions invite Imelda Marcos as guest of honour.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    When legitimate criticism hurts

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 20 August 2014
    17 Comments

    Antisemitism and racism are rightly considered shameful. Those accused of these things usually deny the charges vehemently. Declaring critics of the actions or policies of, say, the Zimbabwe or the Israeli government, to be racist or antisemitic should be called for the bullying it is. Prejudice needs to be demonstrated, not asserted. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Compassionate Jews weep for Gaza

    • Michael Trainor
    • 17 August 2014
    16 Comments

    In Australia and around the world, places of Jewish worship have been daubed with graffiti. One tag reads, 'Weep for Gaza'. In the face of the tragic loss of innocent civilian lives in Gaza, Muslims, Jews and Christians all weep for Gaza. We deplore the tagging.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The Government's high fibre diet of legislation

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 13 August 2014
    4 Comments

    Last week's legislative flurry was very messy, with few signs of reflection on what kind of a society we want to create, and how far particular legislation will help do so. The arguments for legislation are based on abstractions such as free speech and terrorism. They are not supported by sustained reflection on the way in which human beings interact.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    The unjustified secrecy of the Abbott Government

    • Jack Maxwell
    • 10 August 2014
    17 Comments

    Liberal democracies keep secrecy in check. Where secrecy is justified, this justification should itself be public. The Abbott Government has withheld important information from the public on questionable grounds, and it has shielded itself from criticism by stifling debate on whether that secrecy is justified.

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