keywords: Can We Afford To Save The Planet

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Kabul love story

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 30 October 2014
    1 Comment

    Orphan Abdul loves Fatemeh, but her father is demanding a prohibitive dowry for her hand. The financial wrangling between Abdul's guardian Mahboba and Fatemah's father Nik, and all this implies about the ways in which young women's futures can be sold and traded as part of an archaic cultural norm, seems crass and is more than a little disturbing to witness.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Fix poverty by getting to know a poor person

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 16 October 2014
    19 Comments

    Ultimately people will be prepared to accept responsibility for those who are poor only if they know them as persons and not as media fodder. If we do not have some personal acquaintance with the lives of people who are disadvantaged we shall come to see them as an abstraction or a problem to be solved.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Young people can't live on fresh air and sunshine

    • John Falzon
    • 13 October 2014
    35 Comments

    During Anti-Poverty Week we're asked to take the side of the people who are made to feel like they are nothing. We join those of us who believe in working towards the kind of society where vulnerability is respectfully shared and supported rather than brutally exploited. We believe that humanity will win against humiliation. 

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  • EDUCATION

    Inside the women's lit gender ghetto

    • Ellena Savage
    • 11 July 2014
    3 Comments

    Women's lit needs a course of its own'. How original to segment women's work into a category of its own so that it has no bearing on the mainstream! Men's work is universal, and women's work is specific to women. Sixty-five years later, and Simone de Beauvoir still nails it. So should we feminise the mainstream? Or continue to participate at the margins, and hope that the old guard takes notice?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Hillary Clinton's bloodless memoir

    • Barry Gittins
    • 04 July 2014
    2 Comments

    This was akin to reading a carefully vetted resume. An intelligent and formidable first lady, senator and Secretary of State, and no shrinking violet, the author presents a largely passionless, desiccated record. There's the odd poignant reflection. Absurd depictions of Mel Brooksian secure rooms (and the reading of documents with a blanket over her head in non-secure rooms). But, overall, Clinton draws pictures without drawing blood.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    An opportunity to invest in Australia's needy

    • Lin Hatfield Dodds
    • 02 July 2014
    9 Comments

    Australia's welfare system was designed for an era where men were the breadwinners and women worked outside the home only until marriage. Australia is a different place now, and the McClure review is an opportunity to update and simplify the system. But it must not confuse short-term cost-cutting with efficiency.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The people power of Game of Thrones pirates

    • Michael Mullins
    • 14 April 2014
    3 Comments

    Last week's Game of Thrones series four premiere revealed Melbourne as the pirate capital of the world. The downloaders make a 'people power' claim to moral legitimacy because they think pay TV provider Foxtel's business model undermines the access they believe they are entitled to. Stories are not a cultural form of terra nullius, and human nature will not allow them to be wholly appropriated by business interests.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Be selfish, save the planet

    • Megan Graham
    • 02 April 2014
    3 Comments

    Just a few days after we marked the annual observance of Earth Hour, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released its latest report, emphasising the likelihood of an increase in extreme and irreversible damage. In light of this, the fact that we deem Earth Hour to even be necessary seems akin to prompting a dog to notice its kennel is on fire. Unless the dog is in very bad health, it would do what it needs to do to save itself.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    You don't have to be a communist to stand up for the poor

    • John Falzon
    • 27 March 2014
    16 Comments

    I reject the dystopian vision of an Australia where people experiencing poverty are made to endure expenditure cuts while the people who have the least need for assistance enjoy overly generous tax concessions. From time to time someone comes out of the woodwork and accuses me of being a communist but that's the least of my worries. What worries me is the myth that people living in poverty are to blame for their own situation. 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Senior citizen's road trip to dignity

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 27 February 2014
    2 Comments

    Woody surely has dementia, which would explain his certainty that a sweepstakes flyer stating that he has won $1 million is authentic. While one son would prefer to put Woody in a home, the other, David, agrees to honour his wish to cross state lines to claim his fictitious winnings. Woody is aware of his own dwindling physical and mental agency, and understands that the small gifts of dignity afforded to him by David are not small at all.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    It's time to heatproof our cities

    • Greg Foyster
    • 10 February 2014
    23 Comments

    Climate change has loaded the dice towards hotter days and more frequent heat spells. Heatwaves are only going to get worse, and air conditioning isn't the godsend it seems. We need to start retrofitting our cities, suburbs and homes to withstand the sweltering summers to come. Any new houses that perform poorly in the heat are going to be a tremendous burden on the next generation.

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  • MEDIA

    Exploiting consumers needs to be illegal

    • Michael Mullins
    • 10 February 2014
    7 Comments

    The ANZ Bank faces a huge payout after a class action by its customers secured a partial but significant victory against the bank's unfair and illegal credit card late payment fees. This is happening because we have laws to protect consumers. The Federal Government is well advanced in its efforts to wind back existing and planned laws that protect consumers, as they are considered red tape that places an unnecessary burden on business.

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