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Vol 32 No 10

22 May 2022


 

  • AUSTRALIA

    Stray thoughts: On Bernie Finn

    • Julian Butler
    • 03 June 2022
    1 Comment

    Bernie Finn is not a figure I would naturally warm to. He has a rambunctious, contrarian persona that grates. A few months ago, if you had said to me that he would be expelled from the Victorian Liberal Party, I would have imagined it would be for some position or action I find egregious. Instead, he has been expelled for a position I essentially share.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The book corner: Class in Australia

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 03 June 2022
    1 Comment

    As I was reading the illuminating contributions to Class in Australia  I had to confront my attitudes to Marxist analysis, to the claims of sociology, social work and psychology to be sciences, to the relative importance of inequality based on wealth, gender and race, and to any claim that canonises individual choice while claiming to be value free.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Back to Bilo for a Tamil family

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 02 June 2022
    6 Comments

    The case of the Murugappan family illustrates the punitive and puritanical approach of the previous government towards human beings arriving in Australia by boat and then seeking asylum. The tone of each message clearly reflects totally different attitudes towards the people affected, with special note of the fact that Minister Chalmers rang the family to tell them, and then rang people in Biloela to pass on the news.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Unsent letter

    • Jamie Dawe
    • 02 June 2022

    It was wrong to expect her to wade through the river of sadness of family obligations / Right person, wrong timing and I turned away / I have sought to explain myself by searching / 15 years later it is seemly to vanquish the letter / Guaranteed, she found someone somewhere better.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Longing for the multiverse

    • Cherie Gilmour
    • 02 June 2022
    1 Comment

    At a time when a second baby meant my own choices were fading into the background, I thought a lot about Nora and her life-jumping. What if I’d had kids later? What if I’d finished that degree? What if I’d taken that job? What if, what if, what if… The multiverse casts a web of different lives, all endlessly diverging like branches from a tree. 

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    In the name of Kyrill

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 31 May 2022
    4 Comments

    Patriarch Kyrill of Moscow has received much justified criticism for aligning his Church alongside Vladimir Putin in the invasion of Ukraine. If we are to understand how he could think it is right to do so, however, it is helpful to know how he came to be Kyrill. The story of his earlier namesakes illuminate the conduct of the present Patriarch of Moscow. 

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  • ECONOMICS

    Can financial fictions survive reality?

    • David James
    • 31 May 2022
    2 Comments

    As commodity prices and inflation soar in the ‘real’ world we may be witnessing a prelude to another 2008-style crisis triggered by the foreign exchange markets. The risks certainly look similar and can be described with a simple question. Can the fictions produced by out-of-control financial actors survive reality? 

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  • CARTOON

    For Pete’s sake

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 31 May 2022
    1 Comment

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  • MEDIA

    Remembering Caroline Jones

    • Michael Kelly
    • 30 May 2022
    1 Comment

    The abrupt passing of a dear friend in a sudden moment is not only something I had not prepared for. I actually looked forward to seeing her in about 36 hours when we would meet up at Sunday Mass. But that wasn’t to be, and the sharp end was not negotiable. There has been an outpouring of dismay, grief and sorrow at the passing of Caroline Jones. She was so poised and self-possessed that moving into her presence was an immediately arresting experience. 

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  • RELIGION

    Roe vs Wade: The Bishops’ dilemma

    • Miles Pattenden
    • 26 May 2022
    5 Comments

    News leaked earlier this month that the US Supreme Court plans to overturn its most famous decision, that in Roe vs Wade (1973) which protects a pregnant woman's freedom to choose to have an abortion without excessive government restriction. The decision has attracted much criticism both in the past and now on account of its dubious legal reasoning – in particular, its attempt to link the right to abort to a right to privacy which itself was notional and not specified in the US Constitution.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Retracing the tracks

    • Arnold Zable
    • 26 May 2022
    3 Comments

    Election day. Mid-afternoon. 21 May 2022. I make my way to Canning Street, Carlton North. Stop by my childhood home, a single-fronted terrace, the neighbourhood of my youth. In the 1950s election day was a happy day in that rented house, conveniently close to the factories of Brunswick, and the Victoria Market where my father was a stallholder.  My parents loved the three-block walk to the polling booths, located in Lee Street, our local primary school. They were elated at having the right to vote. From where they came, this right had been brutally taken from them.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    The pity of war

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 26 May 2022
    11 Comments

    In the photo I have just seen Vadim Shishimarin is in the dock, hanging his head. He is 21, but looks about 15 as he stands there in the polycarbonate box, the first Russian soldier to be charged and tried in Ukraine for a war crime. He holds the rank of sergeant and was a tank commander. At 21? (I’m embarrassed to recall how immature I was at 21.) It is likely he has a mother: I wonder how she is feeling right now, but think I can make a good guess.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Independent triumphs: The changing of Australian politics

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 24 May 2022
    5 Comments

    The centre of the political system did not so much hold as desert. The vote was a furious, determined and tenacious shout from the estranged centre, a shivering of the timbers. The calibre of individuals elected — many from professions, many with public service outside the traditional party hierarchy of patronage and promotion, and most, women — has not been previously seen in this country’s politics.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The cities strike back

    • John Warhurst
    • 24 May 2022
    5 Comments

    Governments lose elections, but Oppositions still must demonstrate that they are a capable alternative. Both the Morrison Coalition government and the Albanese Labor Opposition played their part last Saturday. There were many sub-plots in the pattern of voting, but this election was primarily lost and won in the four biggest mainland cities. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The content of our winter

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 24 May 2022
    1 Comment

    Next week we officially enter winter. The associations of winter are largely negative. They mourn the loss of the summer that has passed. For that reason it may seem incongruous that winter should begin immediately after a Federal Election campaign that ended with the excitement of the people’s choice of a new Government. The potential for a new beginning might fit better with spring.

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  • EDUCATION

    Teal candidates and the Catholic vote

    • Chris Middleton
    • 23 May 2022
    3 Comments

    Perhaps the most dramatic individual result of the Federal election was that Menzies’s seat, Kooyong, has fallen to a Teal independent, Dr Monique Ryan. Xavier College sits in the Kooyong electorate, and Dr Ryan is a parent at the College. Dr Ryan proved to be an impressive candidate who ran as a good a local campaign as I have ever seen. It was marked by a strong engagement by many locals, and especially among professional women, and older residents.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Stalin’s patriarchate

    • Stephen Minas
    • 23 May 2022
    1 Comment

    ‘We removed him from the mausoleum’, wrote the Soviet poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko. ‘But how do we remove Stalin from Stalin’s heirs?’ The poem was published in 1962 but it’s still a good question. Today one of Stalin’s heirs commands a barbaric war against Ukraine with the enthusiastic cheerleading of another such heir – the leader of the Moscow Patriarchate reestablished by Stalin.

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  • CARTOON

    A fresh coat of paint

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 23 May 2022
    1 Comment

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  • MEDIA

    Stray thoughts: On Twitter

    • David Halliday
    • 20 May 2022

    The news of Musk’s $44 billion dollar purchase of the platform was met with paroxysms of excitement or hysteria depending on where one sits on the political spectrum. Everyone had something to say about it (including Eureka Street). Considering the corrosive state of public discourse over the last few years, which has at least in part been influenced by the algorithms driving social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, I’ll be upfront in saying I’m not especially convinced of Twitter’s status as a social good. So, this development is at least deserving of some curiosity.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Stray thoughts: After the election...

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 13 May 2022
    1 Comment

    As the election campaign mercifully comes to an end, many of us have been musing on what the new Government should do when it comes into office. It is a difficult question to answer because both Parties have excluded any radical action to address the clear and pressing needs of Australians. Fires, floods and insurance costs highlight the need for immediate and shared action to address climate change. The simultaneous high cost of housing, the inadequate benefits available to the disadvantaged, and lack of accommodation for people in need testify to the need to address the growing inequality in Australian society. 

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