author: John Warhurst

  • AUSTRALIA

    Game on: pollies, follies and lollies

    • John Warhurst
    • 03 April 2019
    5 Comments

    The next month will be full of sugar-hits and sweeteners, whether they be personal tax cuts, grants or special deals for organised interests. Every candidate and party is guilty of this in their scramble to win. Citizens are complicit too if their main concern is 'what's in it for me'. Churches play the game as much as any pressure group.

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  • RELIGION

    Australian Catholics take stock as Pell falls

    • John Warhurst
    • 06 March 2019
    61 Comments

    A conservative within a conservative church he was a divisive figure, not just because of his orthodox views but because of the unbending and assertive style with which he promulgated them. Something died in Australian Catholicism with this verdict and Australian Catholics will have to live with that whatever the future turns out to be.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Banks remain protected species

    • John Warhurst
    • 04 February 2019
    10 Comments

    Kenneth Hayne's royal commission into the financial sector has named, shamed and excoriated banks, regulators, insurance companies and other financial services businesses to the extent that you would think they are now extremely vulnerable and universally unloved. That would be a mistake.

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  • RELIGION

    Church reform scorecard

    • John Warhurst
    • 11 December 2018
    53 Comments

    Scoring the performance of the Australian church is a complex task at any time. Dioceses and congregations vary enormously. The mission of church agencies continues unabated in education, health, social services and aged care. But by any measure 2018 has been a big year.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The politics of asylum-seeking children

    • John Warhurst
    • 08 November 2018
    12 Comments

    The government and the opposition are prevaricating and effectively delaying the positive outcome that many in the Australian public are crying out for. The time is ripe for action, but decisive policy movement is still absent.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The confused politics of freedom of religion

    • John Warhurst
    • 12 October 2018
    24 Comments

    The discussion is widely framed as a conflict between secular and religious Australia, as if such entities existed, with secular Australia defending the rights of the LGBTIQ community and religious Australia wanting to shore up its right to discriminate against others on the basis of their sexuality. But it's not that cut and dried.

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  • RELIGION

    What it will take to prove the Church gets it

    • John Warhurst
    • 02 September 2018
    47 Comments

    The question of the seal is seen as proof that the church leadership is still resisting the royal commission recommendations. That impression can only be allayed if the church's record in a decade's time can be shown to be impeccable in responding to the other 98 per cent. Already 98 per cent has been shown to be a rubbery figure.

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  • RELIGION

    Catholic lobby the insider outsider

    • John Warhurst
    • 17 August 2018
    8 Comments

    Political insiders are those forces that use economic clout, political connections, extensive networks and reliable access to decision-makers to influence political outcomes. Outsiders, by definition, lack these characteristics. The Catholic lobby now doubts its own strength and influence. The education sector is a good example.

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  • RELIGION

    Let's talk about the Catholic bishops

    • John Warhurst
    • 17 July 2018
    28 Comments

    The constitutional position of bishops is best illustrated by the Wilson case. The media releases of the hierarchy revealed their impotence. They explained their inaction by pointing out that only the Pope could force a bishop to resign and were reduced to conveying the impression of working behind the scenes to influence Wilson's decision.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Independents and micro party success stories

    • John Warhurst
    • 18 June 2018
    6 Comments

    The contrast between success and failure shows that successful independents and minor parties cannot just be based on major party disillusionment, creative election campaigns, or attractive candidates, but also on deep listening to and engaging with their communities which enable a positive and grounded alternative to be offered to voters.

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  • RELIGION

    Accountability a virtue in churches and banks

    • John Warhurst
    • 22 May 2018
    33 Comments

    General apologies don't go far enough. Compensation is necessary, but also not enough. The reputation of the church would now be higher if there were more obvious signals of accountability by those in charge. The offer of resignation made as a group to Pope Francis by the entire Chilean hierarchy is a breath of fresh air.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Imperfect score for Gold Coast's 'equality' games

    • John Warhurst
    • 24 April 2018
    3 Comments

    The number of medals available to men and women was equal. In this respect the games were better than the cultural norms of some of the competing countries. Integration of disabled athletes was also significant. Against this generally positive background the media persisted in an approach which was needlessly one-eyed.

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