Search Results: Olympics

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Punk's holy fools still putting it to Putin

    • Barry Gittins and Jen Vuk
    • 11 April 2014

    Journalist Masha Gessen describes the members of Pussy Riot as 'Putin's ideal enemies'. In recent months, their nemesis has hosted the Olympics, taken control of Crimea and clamped down on media. For a group born out of 'the repressions of a corporate political system that directs its power against basic human rights', Pussy Riot still has much to roar about, even if its signature 'punk prayer' sounds more than ever like a plea.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Social injustice in international sport

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 25 March 2014
    6 Comments

    The Olympics and World Cup were once seen as a triumph of corporate and athletic enterprise, but today we count the cost. Previous events left countries with decaying venues and huge bills. Government funds line the pockets of corporations but do little for local industry. The Olympics have caused the evictions of more than two million people over the past two decades. It's time to re-think what these events are actually trying to achieve.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Rise of the right in Japan

    • Walter Hamilton
    • 24 February 2014
    4 Comments

    Tony Abbott has described Japan as Australia's 'best friend in Asia'. When he journeys to Japan in April and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe reciprocates in July, the two leaders will move to cement a new 'normal' in the relationship between their nations, including closer defence cooperation. As a correspondent in Japan in the '80s and '90s, I believed Japan's extreme right to be noisy but irrelevant. I'm now coming around to a different view.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Turkish democracy gets the shake-up it needs

    • William Gourlay
    • 12 June 2013
    5 Comments

    Turkey's increasingly dictatorial prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan paid little heed to last week's violent demonstrations, dismissing protesters as looters and blaming social media for inflaming the situation. The protests are hardly on par with Egypt's government-toppling anti-Mubarak demonstrations, yet may still lead to a rejuvenation of Turkish democracy.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Sports fans' idolatry makes monsters of heroes

    • Michael Mullins
    • 25 February 2013
    16 Comments

    The success of elite athletes is often accompanied by narcissistic behaviours that exploit and damage other people. This appears to be the case with Oscar Pistorius and Lance Armstrong. In seeking to curb such behaviour, we can call for greater regulation and surveillance. But we can also examine our own behaviour. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Declaring war on the r-word

    • Moira Byrne Garton
    • 24 January 2013
    19 Comments

    I have heard colleagues refer to decisions as 'retarded', personalities as 'on the [autism] spectrum', and behaviour as 'OCD'. I hoped my silence would express my disapproval. Far from mere 'political correctness', seeking to eliminate such terms from discourse is a natural extension of a respectful and inclusive society. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Life in the Ramadan fasting lane

    • Pat Walsh
    • 05 September 2012
    2 Comments

    The fasting rule is interpreted flexibly. You are free not to fast if you have to travel, are pregnant, old, little, sick, or basically have a good excuse. Ironically, Ramadan can also involve an enormous amount of cooking, late night and pre-dawn binges. Households buy up. Restaurants offer discounts. One hotel lobby was decked out like Mecca.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The Paralympics as a work in progress

    • Michael Mullins
    • 03 September 2012
    5 Comments

    The Paralympics opening ceremony shows how far we've come in reversing the exclusion of disabled athletes. But they encourage physically disabled athletes at the expense of the intellectually disabled. 

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  • CARTOON

    And in the Preferred Prime Minister event...

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 08 August 2012

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Olympics silver whining

    • Various
    • 07 August 2012

    Our species believes it progresses without limitation. We shout when a swimmer wins silver, 'That's no inspiration'. As humans pound forward, no 'burden of care' limitation ... We deserve only winners, our species the sole inspiration.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The Olympics and business world need to grow up

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 06 August 2012
    9 Comments

    The Olympic Games see many thousands of mainly young athletes from all around the world competing for a hundred or so medals. So the point of the exercise can't be to win. It is to lose. Or rather the Games are a school for learning how to lose and so grow in humanity.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The opposite of Australian swimming hubris

    • John Honner
    • 01 August 2012
    10 Comments

    The Spit Baths consist of two swimming areas bounded by boardwalks built on piles sunk into Middle Harbour. At low tide there is barely enough water to swim in. Olympic medallist John Devitt does time trials in just a few feet of water. There is no black line on a sterile tiled floor, just sand and seaweed.

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