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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    After Rilke: Visitation of the Virgin

    • Wally Swist
    • 01 July 2019
    4 Comments

    Windswept Judean hills. Not by the sheer vista below could her abundance ever be measured; striding, with each step she believed no one could transcend the largesse she carried.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Spit decisions: DIY tests endanger DNA data

    • Jacinta Bowler
    • 28 June 2019
    6 Comments

    When One Nation puts forward a policy to DNA test Aboriginal people, DNA databases are solving crimes abroad, and commercial ancestry kits are as popular as ever, it's important to ask what we're giving away when we get our DNA sequenced. You'll only ever have one set of genes and once that data is out there it's very hard to get it back.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    The view from Svalbard of PM's climate neglect

    • Catherine Marshall
    • 27 June 2019
    4 Comments

    This might be the Mediterranean were it not for the snow-lacquered mountains abutting the fjord we're sailing through. But no, it's the Arctic in summer — or, more precisely, the Arctic in the summer of 2019, when the climate emergency is at its zenith and the region is expected to record the lowest sea ice on record.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Why it's futile to beg for refugees' human rights

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 26 June 2019
    13 Comments

    In Boochani's experience, Australians were homogenous and unreflective parts of a machine designed to dehumanise, cow and corrupt the people who sought protection. This report and the departmental response suggest that in on-shore detention the human destruction is not directly intended. It is seen simply as irrelevant.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Lessons from the US-Iran 'lucky escape'

    • Justin Glyn
    • 25 June 2019
    8 Comments

    The first lesson would seem to be that Iran would be foolish to return to talks with the US. There seems precious little to talk about, and absolutely no assurance that the US would keep its side of the deal even if talks did result in the new and better deal the US has claimed it always wanted.

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  • CARTOON

    Cuts both ways

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 25 June 2019

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  • FAITH DOING JUSTICE

    A guide to pragmatic climate action

    • Chris Middleton
    • 25 June 2019
    10 Comments

    In addressing these issues as priorities, I would argue for not focusing on big ideological statements or on a one-size fits all climate policy, but rather invest in the resilience and adaptability of a capitalist/consumer system to meet our environmental concerns.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Winner-take-all election narrative doesn't wash

    • John Warhurst
    • 25 June 2019
    14 Comments

    We are expected to believe that all those perceived Labor failures, plus the massive anti-Labor Clive Palmer campaign and the attraction of some positive Coalition policies, only shifted a little over one Australian in every hundred, though more in some states like Queensland and some individual seats. That analysis can't be right.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Dictators, democrats, and Egypt after Morsi

    • Irfan Yusuf
    • 24 June 2019
    2 Comments

    Egypt's first and thus far only democratically elected President Mohamed Morsi died in court while being tried for espionage following a lengthy period in prison. He is described as an 'Islamist' but never as a democrat. It's as if the two are necessarily mutually exclusive. Must they be? Was he any less democratic than his predecessors?

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Sri Lanka limps on from bloody Easter Sunday

    • Devana Senanayake
    • 24 June 2019
    1 Comment

    During Poson, a celebration of the entrance of Buddhism into Sri Lanka, I passed three tents presenting free sago, tea and jaggery. Though the fanfare of past years did not exist, it appears the country, though still damaged, is limping through to recovery. But can this recovery be sustained if the emotional pain is still to be unpacked?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Gaetano decided to leave

    • Aaron Lembo
    • 24 June 2019
    4 Comments

    A student of Ethics and Philosophy, aspiring librettist, Gaetano Leigh read dusty books on the 16th century Jesuit priest Matteo Ricci in the basement of the Central Library ... Daily Gaetano imagined sailing the South China Sea re-reading catholic theology written to entice the scholarly Confucians ...

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    'Climate emergency' endangers democracy

    • Jeff Sparrow
    • 21 June 2019
    7 Comments

    Historically, a declaration of emergency, whether in response to war, civil unrest or natural disaster, allows the state to suppress debate to enable a militarised response to an urgent problem. You can see why that might appeal as a solution to the environmental crisis. But addressing climate change requires more democracy, not less.

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