Latest articles

  • Smartphone shows Facebook app (Pixabay)
    international

    Will Facebook own up to Myanmar?

    • Erin Cook
    • 19 November 2018

    Social media drove the Arab Spring, the story goes. If it weren’t for viral posts in Tunisia setting off a cascade of dominoes across the region change would never have arrived. For a brief period, the arrival of social media giant Facebook in countries with low connectivity or strict freedom of the press and internet meant change was afoot.

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  • Cartoon of lonely people looking lost and flocking to demagogues. By Chris Johnston
    international

    The implications of loneliness

    • Tim Robertson
    • 19 November 2018
    2 Comments

    Loneliness is framed in a quintessentially liberal way: as a health-related issue affecting individuals. But loneliness is a by-product of the liberal social order; by elevating the market above all else and reducing notions of freedom to individual rights, notions of value are now boiled down to crude forms of economic reductionism.

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  • Pope Francis
    religion

    Softening the pontifical secret

    • Kieran Tapsell
    • 19 November 2018
    4 Comments

    It is understandable that canonists would try to find a kinder interpretation for the pontifical secret, given that the cover up caused more children to be abused, but in the canonical system, you cannot get away from the plain meaning of the words and the interpretation placed on them by the Roman Curia.

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  • Michel Barnier, European Chief Negotiator for the United Kingdom Exiting the European Union (left), visits the UK/Irish Border and gives a joint speech with Irish Prime Minister Taoiseach Leo Varadkar (right). (Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

    Ireland's Brexit troubles

    • Rachel Woodlock
    • 02 November 2018
    4 Comments

    It is the ordinary people — the pensioners on trollies, the sick interminably waiting on ever-increasing lists, the patients being treated in understaffed hospitals — who will truly suffer from Brexit's immediate body shocks to an already frail healthcare system decimated by years of austerity funding cuts.

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  • A person wears a Donald Trump themed costume in the annual Village Halloween parade on Sixth Avenue, New York (Stephanie Keith/Getty Images)

    US electoral process is deeply broken

    • Zac Davis
    • 02 November 2018
    2 Comments

    To posit that the results of an election come down to who shows up at the polls is to admit America's civic life is broken. Moreover, analysis from the perspective of turnout overemphasises the will and passions of voters and ignores the structural flaws embedded in our electoral process.

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  • Brazilian Presidential Candidate Jair Bolsonaro votes in the country's election (Ricardo Moraes-Pool/Getty Images)

    Brazil's long night of the soul

    • Antonio Castillo
    • 30 October 2018
    8 Comments

    Bolsonaro's election is the product of Brazil's disenchantment with democracy and hatred against a political system corrupted to its core. It is corruption — a malaise that infiltrates just about every slice of Brazilian society — that has pushed the country to what Vladimir Safatle, a Brazilian philosopher, has described as 'night without end'.

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  • Abstract humans on white background (Credit: Dmitrri, iStock / Getty Images Plus)

    A bill of rights for the age of technology

    • Kate Galloway
    • 29 October 2018
    2 Comments

    A robust human rights framework would hold government to account in its own deployment of technology such as 'robodebt'. It would also provide protections against the government's increasing attempts to control data through legislation — where data is collected and deployed using diverse technologies.

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  • Alone in a crowd (iStock/Getty Images Plus)

    The worst may already have happened

    • Fatima Measham
    • 24 October 2018
    6 Comments

    Under such conditions, it is hard to get people to concede that what they believe might be incomplete. No one wants to give anything up. This is an attempt to get people to give something up. Here is how to do it: ask what is the worst that can happen. Then accept that it may have already happened. But not to you.

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  • Dr Kerryn Phelps dances and celebrates on the night of the Wentworth by-election (Cole Bennetts/Getty Images)

    Humanity on show in Wentworth aftermath

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 24 October 2018
    6 Comments

    If that is the world of politics then the cooperative energy and the graciousness seen in the Phelps cavalcade and the Liberal candidate are superfluous to requirements. As with refugees despatched to detention, the light and intelligence newly elected MPs bring to Australia will quickly fade from their eyes.

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  • Michael McGirr Books That Saved My Life

    Christianity tells stories; Islam finds designs

    • Michael McGirr
    • 31 October 2018
    16 Comments

    My year ten class studies Islam, one of the most formative influences in the world that my students will inhabit and hopefully improve. I have a profound respect for Islam. Westerners often fail to acknowledge the debt they owe to Islam, a tradition that had a huge role in bringing Europe through the Dark Ages and into the Renaissance.

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  • Scott Morrison delivers national apology to survivors of child sexual abuse

    A new story for child abuse survivors

    • Michael McVeigh
    • 23 October 2018
    17 Comments

    Survivors and their families have been at the centre of this story, and now it's theirs to carry. For years, the people who maintained they were victims of abuse were told that they were trapped in a story about something that had happened to them when they were children. But that wasn't the story they were in at all.

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  • Scott Morrison delivers national apology to survivors of sexual abuse

    Compassion and justice after abuse apology

    • Frank Brennan
    • 21 October 2018
    24 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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  • Rooftop solar installation with Shenzhen downtown skyline view as background, China (Getty)

    Climate change is here, now we need to adapt

    • Cristy Clark
    • 26 October 2018
    7 Comments

    We are already suffering from the effects of global warming and the intensification of extreme weather events, and things are going to get worse. The question now is what we do to both limit the damage and adapt to the inevitable. Fortunately many of the actions that we must take will actually make our lives better.

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  • Drought in Australia (Gerald Simmons/Flickr)

    A crash course in climate literacy

    • Brian Matthews
    • 23 October 2018
    2 Comments

    Drought creeps, infiltrates, sometimes seems little changed day after day, then tightens its grip on this or that paddock, unveils the slowly splitting bottom of a never-before-empty dam ... Even still, according to many of the experienced, crisis-hardened men and women on the land to whom I've spoken, this drought is different.

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  • The Sydney Opera House is seen promoting the Everest race during the TAB Everest Barrier Draw on 9 October 2018. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images for The ATC)

    Opera House ads are not 'food for everyone'

    • Francine Crimmins
    • 12 October 2018
    5 Comments

    There are a few ways an individual can interact with a public space. The first is to sit in or walk through it while crunching an apple. The second is to inhabit it, grow an apple tree and share it with others. The third is to grow the tree, pick the apples behind your neighbours' backs and sell them to Woolworths for a profit.

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  • Scott Morrison sworn in as 30th Prime Minister (Martin Ollman/Getty Images)

    Cue God's applause

    • Barry Gittins
    • 20 November 2018

    I am holy, no, to discriminate? But by doing so, I self-incriminate. I doubt the loud denouncing will dissipate before the promised election falls  

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  • Southern lights

    Enterprises begun, projects explored

    • Denham Grierson
    • 13 November 2018
    3 Comments

    It feels odd to be recycled, my atoms billions of years old, stretching back millennia. What adventures they have had, enterprises begun, projects explored, voyages completed. 

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  • Frayed fabric

    Mending man

    • Julie Perrin
    • 02 November 2018
    14 Comments

    Padraig leads the Corrymeela community in the north of Ireland. It is a place committed to healing the social, religious and political divisions that exist in Northern Ireland. Corrymeela is an ancient Irish word. Padraig says they understood it meant 'hill of harmony' but recently they've discovered it is more like 'the lumpy crossing place'.

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