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Keywords: Polarisation

  • RELIGION

    Making space for conversation

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 04 February 2021
    68 Comments

    The exchanges within churches echo trends in national life that heighten disagreements, lessen respect, and tend to confine conversation circles to people of similar views. People become annoyed if those opposing their views gatecrash their forums. This trend creates problems for Church sponsored publications.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Trump impeachment trial risks further division

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 21 January 2021
    54 Comments

    I fear that as the process plays out, it will be seen by a divided nation to symbolise and embody the polarised politics of the previous years and of the incapacity of the organs of government to comprehend or address the causes of the anger and despair that foment division. It will hinder, not free, the new president.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Biden's middle class in a divided America

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 19 November 2020
    9 Comments

    The priority given to the middle class was not new — Biden stressed it in speeches through the primaries and again as a candidate. And it is no doubt important. But when seen in the light of the passionate polarisation of the campaign, the closeness of the results, and the continuing mutual antipathy of the supporters of each party, rebuilding the middle class seems an unlikely source of healing.

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  • RELIGION

    Catholics and the future of American politics

    • Robert Christian
    • 12 November 2020
    31 Comments

    Now the question is: will the Republican Party revert back to its pre-Trump days, continue down the path of Trumpian populism, or seek an alternative to both? No matter which path is pursued, American Catholics will likely play a key role in shaping the party’s future direction.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The problem with taking politics out of climate change

    • Jeff Sparrow
    • 21 February 2020
    15 Comments

    The common-sense enthusiasm for depoliticising environmentalism — voiced most recently in relation to the bill proposed by the conservative independent Zali Steggall — pushes in entirely the wrong direction.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Climate action requires unity not division

    • Chris Middleton
    • 07 January 2020
    19 Comments

    The Liberals and Nationals have to find a way forward that balances the interests of their supporters with serving the national good. Old arguments and ideological stands need to be re-examined. The PM needs to enable a real debate.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Common ground amid polarised China debate

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 03 December 2019
    5 Comments

    If China spies upon Australia, Australia spied on East Timor. If China detains Uighurs in harsh conditions, so has Australia detained people in brutal and demeaning conditions on Manus Island. If China lays out money to nations on our region to secure its national interests, so does Australia, most notably to Nauru and PNG.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Class and climate drive Melbourne Cup hostility

    • Jeff Sparrow
    • 06 November 2019
    27 Comments

    I can't imagine how anyone could look at the Melbourne Cup and see a vision of the 'fair go'. On the contrary, much hostility to horse racing — this year's Cup attracted the smallest crowd since 1993 — stems from a perception that its rituals celebrate grotesque inequalities.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The day my phone turned on me

    • Michele Frankeni
    • 28 October 2019
    3 Comments

    Lately my phone has been leading me down some dark paths. The algorithms have become skewed and it has become a lot more conservative. I cannot pinpoint when the change occurred. Was it that time I clicked on the Australian? But how does that account for the links to sites that laud Steve Bannon and question the Pope?

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  • RELIGION

    Pope answers policies that suffocate hope

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 30 September 2019
    10 Comments

    The Pope's speech was newsworthy because in Australia sentences to a lifetime in prison without parole are becoming less contentious and more used. His approach to prisoners and their criminal behaviour is in such strong contrast to strands of Australian culture in which exclusion and the denial of hope are an instinctive response.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Can weather presenters be climate saviours?

    • Greg Foyster
    • 16 August 2019
    2 Comments

    The media often portrays climate change as a political issue. But politicians are the least trusted messengers for climate information. They really turn off the public. The most trusted are scientists, firefighters, farmers and weather presenters. Of these, only weather presenters have a large audience and are already skilled communicators.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Climate catastrophe and the irrational race

    • Megan Graham
    • 05 August 2019
    7 Comments

    The debate around climate change shows the danger in believing we humans are principally rational. History gives example after example of how our biases can make us do very irrational things. In the words of Dan Ariely, our species is 'predictably irrational'. It is helpful for us to know this, so that we can become better.

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