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Vol 33 No 23

27 November 2023


 

  • AUSTRALIA

    How a High Court verdict upended indefinite detention

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 08 December 2023
    4 Comments

    On 8 November, the High Court ordered a stateless Rohingya refugee known only as NZYQ to be released from detention. He could not be granted a visa because he was found gulity of sexually assaulting a minor, and he could not be sent anywhere because he is stateless. Until 8 November, he was stuck in indefinite mandatory detention.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The sins of our fathers

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 08 December 2023
    1 Comment

    My Father’s Shadow is a beautifully constructed three-dimensional jigsaw puzzle in which perfectly formed and elegant stories from different times and places are juxtaposed and tested for fit, so forming a pattern of meaning that is never closed. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Can't Let It Be

    • Barry Divola
    • 06 December 2023

    A group’s break-up is no longer an impediment to the band’s – or, more to the point, the brand’s – ability to continue. The release of Now And Then was one of the biggest music events of 2023, a foregone conclusion when something is billed as ‘the final Beatles song’. And the result? Well, that’s where the arguments start, don’t they?

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  • RELIGION

    Mixed messages inside and outside the Synodal Church

    • John Warhurst
    • 06 December 2023
    4 Comments

    In the aftermath of the Synod on Synodality, the Catholic community is marked by a sense of uncertainty, reflected in reactions that span from hope to criticism. As the Second Assembly nears, the critical need for more transparent and effective communication from Church leaders becomes increasingly evident.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    What progressives need to understand about the October 7 massacre

    • Philip Mendes
    • 04 December 2023
    1 Comment

    For over 40 years, I have supported a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. That term means two states for two peoples. Such an outcome can only come about as the result of peaceful negotiations that advance compromise and moderation on both sides. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The High Court and the detention of asylum seekers

    • Frank Brennan
    • 04 December 2023
    8 Comments

    Last month, the High Court overturned a controversial 2004 decision, reaffirming the principle that asylum seekers cannot be detained indefinitely without prospects of deportation. This ruling not only corrects a historical misstep but also reasserts the High Court's commitment to limiting executive overreach.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The world is spinning out of control and there's absolutely nothing to watch

    • David Halliday
    • 04 December 2023

    As the world continues spiralling into total chaos, there remains, shockingly, absolutely nothing to watch on any streaming service.  And I’m not talking about a lack of options – there’s enough content to drown in, while, ironically, leaving us parched. I know how Coleridge’s mariner must have felt.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Who loves longer? In conversation with Richard Flanagan

    • Michael McGirr
    • 01 December 2023
    2 Comments

    Flanagan’s new book, Question 7, a beautiful and profound reading experience. It is a deeply personal memoir, a net woven from many threads. It traces the fine lines that link stories across time and around the world.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Time and change

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 30 November 2023
    3 Comments

    Change often hurts or is at least hard to adjust to. Sometimes I yearn for a simpler way of doing things, for a period when people’s expectations were more modest, and when the average person was not as materialistic. However, it has to be conceded that we have made progress in some areas, and that some changes are for the better.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Absolute obedience: David McBride and the limits of duty

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 30 November 2023
    3 Comments

    Charged with breaching national security for exposing alleged war crimes by Australian forces in Afghanistan, former Australian military lawyer David McBride's trial in Canberra rekindles a debate that tests the boundaries of military obedience and public interest. At the heart of this legal battle lies the question: when does the duty to expose wrongdoing outweigh the duty to follow orders?  

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  • AUSTRALIA

    When law making bastardises the Law

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 30 November 2023
    8 Comments

    Any legislation hastily designed to negate the effect of the High Court decisions will be vulnerable again to be struck down on judicial appeal. That haste suggests an initial disregard for human rights and the rule of law by Governments and an ingrained resistance to any limitation of its power. Vindictive laws come at a heavy cost to the integrity and reputation of the lawmakers. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    A Christmas Carol and the making of a miser

    • David Halliday
    • 30 November 2023
    2 Comments

    Why another Christmas Carol and why now? This version takes a detour from Dickens’ original delving deeper into Scrooge’s past, painting him not just as a villain, but as a victim of circumstances. It suggests that behind every act we hastily label as ‘cruel’ lies a story of fear and anxiety, and a flesh-and-blood human being. And forgiveness, then, becomes an acknowledgment of our shared human frailty.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Hitting rock bottom

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 29 November 2023
    4 Comments

    Sometimes the darkness of the world, not to mention of our personal lives, can overwhelm us. When we hear of children killed unrepentantly, for example, human rights routinely denied, the cooking of the world locked in, and nations entrusting power to wilful children. How do you deal with such a dark vision?

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  • EDUCATION

    The myths of school funding

    • Chris Curtis
    • 29 November 2023
    6 Comments

    Australian school funding is full of common misconceptions, and creating a rational, just, and effective school funding model requires cutting through media-driven inaccuracies to understand the real needs of Australian students and schools.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    How do we talk about the cost of net-zero?

    • Anthony N Castle
    • 28 November 2023
    1 Comment

    There is an economic case for acting on the climate crisis but the economics can be a distraction unless we start the conversation at the right place: the environment. A heating climate will cost us trillions. If we don’t act at all, it will cost us everything.

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