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  • Kirtibati, Tararwa island (JohnHodjkinson/Getty)
    international

    Sinking Kiribati raises sovereignty questions

    • Alana Schetzer
    • 19 September 2019
    3 Comments

    This tiny nation isn't just at risk of physically disappearing because of rising sea levels. It's also at risk of disappearing politically and culturally. Kiribati's shaky future raises the unprecedented question of what could happen to its sovereignty if — or when — it physically disappears. Can a nation still exist without an actual country?

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  • Vintage style 3-D rendering of flying saucer (oorka / Getty)
    environment

    The 'kettle logic' of climate denial cultists

    • Jeff Sparrow
    • 19 September 2019
    2 Comments

    Like the flying saucer people documented in When Prophecy Fails, they don't change their minds based on new material. Rather, the discomfort fresh edvidence causes them results in a renewed proclamation of their denialism, as they double down on that identity. The rhetoric might change but the structure remains the same.

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  • For Australian audience, local climate impacts are more relevant than images of the melting Arctic. Including real people in the photo gives a powerful human perspective. Source: Bushfire in Cessnock by Flickr User Quarrie Photography
    media

    Ban polar bears! Climate visuals that work

    • Greg Foyster
    • 18 September 2019
    3 Comments

    The visual language of climate change has become predictable and stunted. In the 1980s activists used an image of a polar bear adrift on a floe of ice to tell the story of global warming and rising sea levels. It's become visual shorthand for the topic — useful for quick categorisation, but stale and easily dismissed.

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  • Pro-Hong Kong demonstrators cover one eye in reference to the bloodied eye patch, another symbol of the Hong Kong protests, in Melbourne on 31 August 2019 in Melbourne. (Photo by Asanka Ratnayake/Getty Images)

    Australian unis failing Hong Kong students

    • Sangeetha Thanapal
    • 14 September 2019
    5 Comments

    The students might not have many rights back home, but they do in the western democracies in which they live. The violence against peaceful protestors not just in Hong Kong but in countries where Hong Kong students are exercising their basic rights is unsettling. Yet the response by unis all over Australia has been taciturn at best.

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  • Chris Johnston cartoon

    US gun culture and travel advisories

    • Catherine Marshall
    • 13 September 2019
    2 Comments

    I’d never relied on travel advisories before. They tend to be inconsistent, targeting developing nations sorely in need of tourist patronage while ignoring western countries to which tourists already flock.

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  • Protesters hold up signs during Anti-Australia protests on December 6, 2013 in Dili, Timor-Leste.

    Australia's true relationship with Timor-Leste

    • Sophie Raynor
    • 09 September 2019
    13 Comments

    Australia’s priority is clear: self-protection at all costs, no matter the sacrifice required of Timor-Leste. And it’s a theme that continues today: Australia’s neighbourly relationship with Timor-Leste remains one of taking anything it can, not of sharing like friends.  

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  • In this cartoon by Fiona Katauskas, people line up in a movie theatre. The poster besides reads, 'Un-silence of the Lambie', with the subtitle, 'The balance of power is in her hands'. The poster image depicts Jacqui Lambie holding a list of demands. One of the moviegoers says, 'I can't wait to see how it ends'.

    The Jacqui Lambie conundrum

    • John Warhurst
    • 17 September 2019
    5 Comments

    Serendipity is defined as the gift of finding valuable things in unexpected places by sheer luck. It is a good description of Tasmanian Senator Jacqui Lambie in Australian politics. But there is a sting in the tail. A system which depends on serendipity potentially also has a big downside.

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  • Outside of a Centrelink office (Scott Barbour/Getty images)

    Robodebt at the vanguard of government power grab

    • Kate Galloway
    • 12 September 2019
    7 Comments

    A policy genuinely in support of moving into employment would not seek to capitalise on the ambiguity of accounting in the year of transition from welfare to work — which is effectively what robodebt does.

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  • Prison wall barbed wire fence with blue sky background (Photo by josefkubes/Getty Images).

    A different approach needed for youth justice

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 11 September 2019
    4 Comments

    The Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass has published a damning report of the use of isolation for children in Victorian justice centres. Those acquainted with the administration of juvenile justice in Australia will find nothing new in the report. Therein lies its scandal.

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  • Pope Francis delivers a blessing from the central balcony overlooking St Peter's Square in April 2018. (Photo by Franco Origlia/Getty Images)

    The two Francises model climate justice

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 18 September 2019
    6 Comments

    Pope Francis has insisted that the urgent need to care for the natural world of which we are part is not a disputed question but a Christian duty. He has appealed to the legacy of St Francis of Assisi, whose name he took when he became Pope; that saint of the 13th century who is popularly known best for his love of nature.

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  • Getting Back on Mission. Reforming Our Church Together (Garratt Publishing, 2019)

    Lay community key to reforming Catholicism

    • Paul Collins
    • 04 September 2019
    32 Comments

    Anyone in the past who called attention to these issues was accused at best of exaggeration'. Getting Back on Mission points out that until the church accepts good governance characterised by accountability, transparency, inclusion and a recognition of the equality of women, it will continue its culture of clericalism and secrecy.

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  • Georgia Taylor-Brown of Great Britain competes in the AJ Bell World Triathlon on 8 June 2019 in Leeds, England. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

    Athletes model anarchic cooperation

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 19 August 2019
    5 Comments

    The story illustrates the way in which sport, like so many other areas of life, has allowed itself to be defined as a business whose sole reason for existence is to make people compete against others. To refuse to compete, even if an athlete falls in front of you, is anti-competitive behaviour that must be penalised.

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  • Smoke emitting from nuclear reactors at a plant in Aachen, Germany (Credit: Classen Rafael / EyeEm / Getty)

    Nuclear push is about ideology, not solutions

    • Tim Hutton
    • 17 September 2019
    12 Comments

    The problem with the discussion about nuclear energy is that it is a distraction; an ideologically driven misdirection by those who are more concerned with opposing renewables and the 'green-left' than solving our country's energy problems. Nuclear just doesn't make sense for Australia at this stage of the game.

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  • People in lineup (Getty Images)

    A rogues gallery of casual climate denial

    • Vivienne Cowburn
    • 16 September 2019
    2 Comments

    From overly sheltered baby boomers to millennials too fatigued with the state of the world to care, the reality of climate change can be a lot to handle. Here's a snapshot of the people living with their heads in the sand, employing tactics including pessimism, cognitive dissonance and deflections to stay where they are.

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  • Woman and child picking apple from a construction line (Original art Chris Johnson)

    Green consumerism is part of the problem

    • Jacinta Bowler
    • 16 September 2019
    7 Comments

    Whole industries have sprung up dedicated to help alleviate climate stress. Tote bags. Metal straws. Zara has announced 100 per cent of its fabrics will be sustainable by 2025 while Apple has said it plans to eventually stop mining. All of this looks great, but it doesn't help the underlying issue: We are still buying way too much stuff.

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  • Tent under an overpass in Melbourne. (Nigel Killeen / Getty)

    The quiet assimilators

    • Denise O'Hagan
    • 16 September 2019
    1 Comment

    Take almost any street, in any modern city, and we are there. We are the substrata of society, ever-present, the unseen lining, the padding in the crowd. We carry our backgrounds closer than our wallets, effortlessly. Yet they inform our every step.

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  • Tayla Harris unveiling the statue of her kick in Federation Square (Wayne Taylor/Getty Images)

    Harris statue marks a turning point for AFLW

    • Erin Riley
    • 12 September 2019
    4 Comments

    It felt like a turning point. Female athletes and their supporters were saying no, we will not stand by while this happens. That sexual harassment has no place in our game. That female athletes should be able to do their jobs without abuse.

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  • Two hands holding coffees on top of a table (Image: Jonathan J. Castellon/Unsplash)

    The lattes have been had

    • Geoff Page
    • 11 September 2019
    5 Comments

    They feel a shyness and a fear/taking off their clothes. Gravity has had its say/regarding shape and size. Their bodies are a narrative/permitting no disguise. There’s been no rush — or just a bit — the lattes have been had.

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