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  • Young environment activists hold protest signs up in front of comedians dressed as Labor leader Bill Shorten and Prime Minister Scott Morrison as part of the anti-Adani convoy led by former Greens leader, Bob Brown. (Photo by Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)
    environment

    New ways forward for climate action

    • Greg Foyster
    • 24 May 2019
    1 Comment

    There's a lot to say about the election, and much nonsense doing the rounds. Here's a summary of what went wrong and some ideas for communicating climate change over the next three years. The first thing to note is that the election probably wasn't won or lost on climate.

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  • Former Labor leader Bill Shorten with members of GetUp! during the 2016 election campaign.
    australia

    Lessons from GetUp in how not to do activism

    • Irfan Yusuf
    • 23 May 2019
    1 Comment

    The most successful political movements are those flexible enough to co-opt the rhetorical and ideological tropes of their opponents. The ones which fail are those which insist on ideological purity. They may be well-resourced, have plenty of volunteers and ambitious programs. But all this may count for little if they cannot sell their ideas.

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  • Prime Minister Scott Morrison delivers his victory speech in Sydney. (Photo by Tracey Nearmy/Getty Images)
    media

    Dissecting Australian media's Trump moment

    • Eliza Berlage
    • 22 May 2019
    4 Comments

    Morrison heralded his win as a 'miracle' and the media ran with it, leading to headlines like 'Messiah from the shire'. But while it was unexpected to those reporting on it, a look at deeply divided and change-averse Australia makes the Coalition win seem less remarkable.

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  • Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (bottom) delivers a speech during the opening of the Two Sessions of the 13th National People's Congress at the Great Hall of People in Beijing on 5 March 5 2019. (Photo by Andrea Verdelli/Getty Images)

    China discourse beyond pandas and dragons

    • Jeremy Clarke
    • 22 May 2019
    1 Comment

    While Bob Carr's institute was deemed to be a panda hugger and Clive Hamilton's position on Chinese influence was considered to be dragon slaying, knowledgeable discussion is a distant third. To China-watchers, the relative lack of a sophisticated focus on Australia-China relations during the election was simply business as usual.

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  • Jean Vanier shaking hands with one of the core members of L'Arche Daybreak, John Smeltzer.

    Jean Vanier's model for inclusiveness

    • Justin Glyn
    • 09 May 2019
    10 Comments

    Jean Vanier (1928-2019), sailor, academic, companion and man of boundless hospitality, died on 7 May, leaving behind him not only many communities in grief but also a model for how a world free of discrimination might look.

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  • Netta Barzilai representing Israel performs during the second grand final dress rehearsal of Eurovision song contest 2018 in Lisbon, Portugal. (Photo by Carlos Rodrigues / Getty Images)

    No compromise in Israel Eurovision boycott

    • Ramona Wadi
    • 06 May 2019
    16 Comments

    One trick used by those opposing the boycott of Eurovision is to describe Israeli colonialism as a 'conflict'. Instead of emphasising the importance of decolonisation, 'compromise' is celebrated. But compromise between the coloniser and the colonised is a dangerous political game.

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  • Bill Shorten and Scott Morrison each open a box. Shorten's is empty, Morrison's contains a gold-plated Australia. Chris Johnston cartoon

    Resist 'brutal retail politics'

    • Esther Anatolitis
    • 24 May 2019

    There's a lot of work to be done to ensure the Australian government has the best guidance it needs to prepare the policies and deliver the services Australians urgently need. To strengthen ourselves into making that contribution, let's begin by rejecting 'brutal retail politics' and instead champion generous community expertise.

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  • Prime Minister Scott Morrison, flanked by his wife Jenny Morrison, delivers his victory speech at the Sofitel Sydney Wentworth on 18 May 2019 in Sydney. (Photo by Tracey Nearmy/Getty Images)

    Election is done, now to focus on what matters

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 21 May 2019
    13 Comments

    It is time to return to the more important question of what matters for the future good of Australia. This is what governments and political parties are bound by tradition and by their own official rhetoric to serve. This, not electoral success or failure, should govern their actions and our response as citizens to their governance.

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  • Old Australasian Map In Sepia (Photo by simonbradfield / Getty)

    Don't denigrate rational regional Queensland

    • Kate Galloway
    • 21 May 2019
    43 Comments

    Queenslanders are subjected to the imposed norms of southerners all the time. Those in central and north Queensland are imposed to the same kind of disdain from Brisbane. In the wake of the Coalition's election victory, it has been unedifying to see opposition voters seeking to explain the loss of their parties by blaming a ‘stupid’ electorate.

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  • Israel Folau (right) and Karmichael Hunt celebrate Folau scoring a try during the round six Super Rugby match between the Waratahs and the Crusaders on 23 March 2019. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

    Wrestling with the sacking of Israel Folau

    • Chris Middleton
    • 07 May 2019
    24 Comments

    Folau is a lay minister in his church. There is no doubt that he, as an evangelical Christian with a literal understanding of the text, believes a whole lot of people will go to hell unless they repent. His sacking raises questions around important issues in a society that values diversity and that promotes inclusivity and tolerance.

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  • St Mary's Cathedral, Sydney (Apexphotos / Getty)

    Church reform must increase transparency

    • John Warhurst
    • 02 May 2019
    26 Comments

    Those holding church authority should show the Catholic community that they have learnt the lessons offered by the royal commission by undertaking reforms as soon as possible and by telling us all about them in a spirit of transparency.

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  • Militant Grace by Philip Ziegler

    Apocalyptic need not be the end of the world

    • Kevin Hargaden
    • 17 April 2019
    6 Comments

    One of the most vibrant theological movements in the world today declares itself 'apocalyptic'. This does not refer to the end of the world because of some political conflict, or the great derangement that flows from the climate disaster. These theologians are using apocalyptic in its original Greek sense — apo kalypsis — a revealing.

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  • Anthony Perkins, Gregory Peck and Fred Astaire in the 1959 dystopian movie On the Beach.

    Living with dystopia

    • Cristy Clark
    • 09 May 2019
    7 Comments

    Researchers have been documenting the rise of 'eco-anxiety' or 'eco-angst' for some time, and these feelings of despair and powerlessness are common. But we need to become the heroes of this dystopic film plot. Somehow, in the face of all our anxiety and despair, we need to locate our capacity for hope and our courage to take action.

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  • Pictured: Greg Bannon (centre), Chairperson of FLAG, with Kimba and Flinders Ranges community members, ready to present hundreds of postcard petitions to Rowan Ramsey, Coalition federal member for Grey. Photo credit: Mara Bonacci

    Dump opponents meet on 'country in between'

    • Michele Madigan
    • 02 May 2019
    6 Comments

    'We are the joy, the sadness, the anger and the peace.' With these moving words, Elders Aunty Enice Marsh and Geraldine Anderson opened a significant gathering in Port Augusta, as people from the Flinders Ranges and the Kimba, still threatened by the federal government's plans to deposit the nation's radioactive waste, met again.

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  • Tony Abbott in 2014 (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

    How Abbott still haunts climate policy

    • Greg Foyster
    • 24 April 2019
    10 Comments

    By setting the boundaries of what is considered politically acceptable, Tony Abbott has influenced the level of ambition in every party's climate policy, and has even caused environment groups to shift their positions. How has he manage to wield so much influence for so long? There are three reasons he cut through when Labor didn't.

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  • Johan Huizinga's The Autumn of the Middle Ages

    A medieval light on modern day darkness

    • Brian Matthews
    • 22 May 2019

    For modern readers of Huizinga's The Autumn of the Middle Ages, there is a curious kind of double vision. While 21st century life has incomparably eclipsed medieval counterparts, there are aspects of the comparison that remain at least intriguing and, in some cases, enlightening.

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  • Man under umbrella walking on road

    No simple case of right and wrong

    • Robert DiNapoli
    • 20 May 2019
    2 Comments

    The work that's held my undivided heart now hangs upon the lip of the inane, a path I've struck, unwinding meaning's ball, or else a futile tangle, every day more lost to telos, purpose and design. No one else seems to have passed this way.

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  • Chris Johnston cartoon shows a woman on a bus crowded with friendly Doctor Who characters.

    This bus is a TARDIS

    • Julie Perrin
    • 19 May 2019

    It wouldn't take much for an accident to happen, for things to fall apart. But today we have the kindly and calm Bus Driver. He wants the bus to do its job, to move as many people as possible on this afternoon when there is only one train line open, where the street is thick with footy crowds.

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