keywords: A Lack Of Opposition

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A tale of two refugee movement speeches

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 01 May 2012
    23 Comments

    Tony Abbott did not mention the term 'human rights' in his 3000 word speech to the Institute of Public Affairs on Friday. 'Illegal' appeared 11 times and 'asylum' once. In February, Antonio Guterres, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees gave a 3000 word speech to the Lowy Institute. A search of that speech finds 'human rights' five times, 'asylum' 21 times and no use of 'illegal'. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Russia's liberal wind of change

    • Dorothy Horsfield
    • 04 April 2012

    Among Westerners and locals alike, Moscow seems to be afloat on scurrilous innuendo, focused on Putin's bully-boy tactics, fondness for young women and pathological greed. Still, since the eruption of street protests after last December's parliamentary elections, the narratives appear to be shifting.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Canned pairs reveal Opposition's fruity strategy

    • John Warhurst
    • 30 March 2012
    9 Comments

    The Opposition has unrelentingly resisted pairs, whereby an MP from one side doesn't vote in order to allow an MP from the other side to be away. Their strategy is to emphasise the closeness of the numbers in parliament. This hardline attitude has recently led to some crazy and downright silly situations.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The fall and fall of Queensland Labor

    • Scott Prasser
    • 23 March 2012
    9 Comments

    Tomorrow, Labor will be swept from office in Queensland. The resounding defeat is not easy to explain. While there have been many policy debacles and scandals under Labor, the Queensland government has not resembled the shame of its New South Wales counterpart prior to its defeat last year.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Benefits of Australia's UN Security Council bid

    • Benedict Coleridge
    • 07 March 2012
    5 Comments

    Critics of Australia's bid to join the UN Security Council have either a narrow view of what constitutes Australia's national interest, or a view of Australian taxpayers as shareholders who should expect a financial return on every investment.

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  • EDUCATION

    Gonski's reductionist view of education

    • Chris Middleton
    • 24 February 2012
    9 Comments

    The report's argument that a base level of funding be established might lead to a lowest common denominator approach to determining what is an 'efficient' education, in both the state and private systems. Creativity, diversity and experimentation may be hindered in such a regime.

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  • RELIGION

    Best of 2011: Gillard's Malaysia solution stumble

    • Frank Brennan
    • 05 January 2012
    2 Comments

    The Malaysia solution has hit a snag called the High Court of Australia. The Government is now in very stormy waters, because the rule of law and the separation of powers do not readily yield to the sound bites of populist sentiment and the fear tactics of politicians. Published 8 August 2011

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Israel's gay rights sleight of hand

    • Ruby Hamad
    • 14 November 2011
    16 Comments

    Israel is using its positive treatment of gays as a means of 'selling' its campaign against Palestinians. Before automatically siding with Israel, the international gay community would do well to consider the ways in which all forms of discrimination are linked.

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  • RELIGION

    Religious groups and the Bill of Rights debate

    • Frank Brennan
    • 18 July 2011

    Speech given by Fr Frank Brennan SJ at the 'Law and Religion: Legal Regulation of Religious Groups, Organisations and Communities' Conference Dinner in Melbourne on 15 July 2011.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Gillard the least of Labor's worries

    • John Warhurst
    • 29 June 2011
    14 Comments

    The media are not indulging in fantasies, but feeding off rumours around Parliament House and gossip from within Labor. The message is that Gillard has until Christmas to improve the party's standing. But the party has bigger problems than an unpopular leader.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Best of 2010: To Kill A Mockingbird and asylum seeker justice

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 13 January 2011
    1 Comment

    Atticus works within the system and hopes thereby to reform it. He wonders 'why reasonable people go stark raving mad when anything involving a Negro come up'. Many lawyers will understand the challenge of working for the unpopular 'other': just replace 'Negro' with asylum seeker or 'Muslim woman in burqa'.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Dangers of Indigenous referendum

    • John Warhurst
    • 01 December 2010
    5 Comments

    The debate about the Indigenous constitutional referendum proposed by the Gillard Government is heading in a dangerous direction. Naysayers will not defeat it. What may defeat it is division among those who are supporters in principle but not supporters of the particular proposal.

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