keywords: Dysfunction

  • RELIGION

    Compassion and justice after abuse apology

    • Frank Brennan
    • 21 October 2018
    25 Comments

    May the Lord have mercy on us all. May the day come when church officials and victims will be comfortable in each other's presence in our Parliament even if not in our Church. But let's dare to pray that all might belong both in the galleries of our Parliament and in the pews of our Church seeing the light in fullness of days.

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  • RELIGION

    New horizons for justice and solidarity

    • Frank Brennan
    • 10 September 2018

    As leaders like Gough Whitlam and Patrick Dodson have attested, if we are to imagine and strive towards New Horizons for Justice and Solidarity, we need conviction, perseverance, capacity for compromise, relationships of trust, humour.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Truths for Trump on South African farmers

    • Catherine Marshall
    • 28 August 2018
    2 Comments

    In the 17 years since, farm murders have dropped dramatically. At face value, this is a triumph in the fight against violent crime, and a resounding riposte to people like President Donald Trump and our own Peter Dutton and Tony Abbott, who have seized on the issue in order to sow racial hatred among their own constituents.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    The global push against refugees

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 12 July 2018
    16 Comments

    Cometh the time, cometh the exploitable prejudice. With millions of globally displaced persons, states are retreating from the business of actually treating the condition as one of dysfunction inflicted by war, famine and poverty. It has morphed from a matter of humanitarianism to one of social ill and unease.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Tim Winton's model of manhood

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 04 May 2018
    5 Comments

    One of the challenges that faces any society is how boys will become men. In many societies the passage is mapped and enacted through ritual initiations or through military training. It also periodically causes great anxiety. Two recent books encourage reflection on different aspects of the passage from boys to men.

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  • MEDIA

    Media complicit in the rise of political trolls

    • Jonathan Green
    • 02 February 2018
    13 Comments

    Here we have a quick demonstration of a new political method. It's not designed to advance any particular policy position. The point is trolling: the simple art of using rhetoric and political acts to provoke a reaction. Suddenly a lot makes sense. Tony Abbott makes sense. Donald Trump makes sense. So much of social media makes sense.

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  • RELIGION

    Seeking a true new start for all job seekers and workers

    • Frank Brennan
    • 08 November 2017

    'We need to recommit to work for all those who are able and willing. We need to recommit to social assistance for all those who are not able. We need to ensure that a life of frugal dignity is within the grasp of all citizens.' 2017 Rerum Novarum Oration by Fr Frank Brennan SJ

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    No end to the cruelty as Manus centre closes

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 31 October 2017
    16 Comments

    The closure of the centre is not the end of it. The men are to be moved to purpose-built accommodation in the town of Lorengau. There is both fear and reluctance. The cruelty, in other words, is merely being displaced.

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  • RELIGION

    Please treasure marriage

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 05 October 2017
    21 Comments

    On the one hand, one could look at the campaign for marriage equality and feel that it's refreshing that a section of society wants marriage to be affirmed and made more available. But what are people really going to be voting on when they make their decision in the postal survey?

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  • ECONOMICS

    Access to housing isn't a reward it's a human right

    • Rachel Kurzyp
    • 29 September 2017
    10 Comments

    History tells us that we won't end homelessness in Australia by building more crisis accommodation, and it's clear we can't rely on the private market to fill the growing housing gap. We've known since 1988 that social housing plays a crucial role in reducing homelessness. So what's stopping us from investing in social housing and replicating the success we've seen in countries like Finland?

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Children's flourishing inside and outside the nuclear family

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 12 May 2017
    3 Comments

    Public celebrations of family life such as the International Day of Families should be uncontroversial. But they sometimes focus on the definition of the family, with the claims of the stable nuclear family of father, mother and children set against the claims of other kinds of family groupings. These discussions should not distract from such larger questions as: why are families of any description important, and what qualities are needed if they are to be effective?

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Youth justice system needs reform not repression

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 26 April 2017
    7 Comments

    We need only to imagine ourselves as a child subject to the practices described in these accounts, to find them scarifying. The recurring images of children lying in the foetal position, in solitary confinement, hooded or surrounded by guards say it all. When we set them against the results of research into the biological and psychological development of children, detention, prolonged lockdowns, isolation and a culture of punishment are destructive and counterproductive.

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