keywords: Conspiracy Theories

  • INTERNATIONAL

    The dangers of Trump and climate conspiracy theories

    • Fatima Measham
    • 29 September 2016
    6 Comments

    Trump predictably resorted to insinuation to mask his deficiencies. After the first presidential debate, he said: 'They gave me a defective mic. Did you notice that ... was that on purpose?' It is hilarious until you realise how it would be received by supporters. It captures something of contemporary politics, where the line between conspiracy theory and legitimate anti-establishment criticism is more smudged than ever. A deficit of trust is one thing; a detachment from truth is something else.

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  • MEDIA

    Balance vs fairness in giving airtime to conspiracy theorists

    • Francine Crimmins
    • 19 June 2017
    4 Comments

    The NBC has pushed ahead with its plans to air Megyn Kelly's interview with conspiracy theorist Alex Jones despite criticism from friends and family whose loved ones were killed in the Sandy Hook massacre, which Jones claims was 'staged by actors' and 'never happened'. This contentious interview has sparked a conversation about which forums should allow dissenting viewpoints and whether dangerous ideas should be given public airtime in a news context.

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  • CARTOON

    Joining the Q

    • Fiona Katauskas
    • 29 September 2020

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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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  • RELIGION

    Flaws, fancy in Vatican homosexuality book

    • Michael Furtado
    • 14 June 2019
    34 Comments

    Martel's work cannot be ignored because it is published at a time when the Church is engulfed by several sexual scandals of global magnitude. Reviewing Martel's book provides an opportunity to critically examine the narratives of accusation and defence that surround such accounts, so that onlookers can make sense of them.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Rage, revile, repeat: Hanson's great swindle

    • Barry Gittins
    • 03 October 2018
    4 Comments

    Consider the sheer volume of Hanson's emotive denouncements over decades. The anti-intellectualism that undergirds her populism. The shifts in tack, to capture the wind of whichever tragic event puffs up her sails. We're breathing in Hanson's views without conscious recognition of their invalidity. That's why this book matters.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    There's no wrong way to be Chinese overseas

    • Tseen Khoo
    • 08 March 2018
    6 Comments

    Huang's article 'What Australia gets wrong about Chinese New Year' caused an uproar, with many comments about the Mandarinisation of Chinese culture. I had a moment of pleasure imagining telling my mother that, according to this writer, she's doing Chinese New Year wrong. My mother has an excellent range of Cantonese epithets.

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  • MEDIA

    Language is the first and last contest of the post-truth era

    • Fatima Measham
    • 19 January 2017
    11 Comments

    In the weeks before the US election, Salena Zito wrote of Donald Trump: 'The press takes him literally, but not seriously; his supporters take him seriously, but not literally.' Not being able to take consequential public statements as meant - that loosens threads that bind democracies. The work cut out for US journalists is in fact cut for all who live in this era. If language no longer organises reality in a way that meets basic agreement, not much holds us together.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Watching the 'mixed bag' Senate cross bench at work

    • John Warhurst
    • 05 December 2016
    4 Comments

    To say the Senate cross bench is a mixed bag is an understatement. All that is really lacking is an extreme left senator unrestrained by Labor/Green discipline. Amid all the controversy I've grown comfortable with their place in the Senate and appreciative of their collective presence in an otherwise party dominated chamber. They each have their flaws, but they make a generally positive contribution to public discussion and to ultimate legislative outcomes. We are better off for their presence.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Forget conspiracies and own your complicity

    • Ellena Savage
    • 08 August 2016
    4 Comments

    The talking heads say the same things I once heard on Illuminati documentaries. In place of Pharrell Williams making suspicious hand gestures though, the blame for the unpleasant outcomes of a healthy free market is bestowed on the western world's maligned: refugees, Indigenous people, queer people, the working poor. These talking heads, who feel desperate and inferior because they have never contributed anything to anyone other than themselves, are eschewing their complicity in harm.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Environmentalists' potential allies on the populist right

    • Greg Foyster
    • 03 August 2016
    6 Comments

    The neoliberal right is losing political power to the populist right, which isn't filled with the same ideological zeal for free-market capitalism. Suddenly debates can expand beyond the narrow confines of economic growth. Moral and social arguments won't be relegated to the intellectual fringes anymore. Mainstream parties of the left and right, both of which bought into the neoliberal agenda, will have to break their bipartisan dismissal of discontent with the side effects of globalisation.

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  • MEDIA

    A fascist by any other name

    • Jeff Sparrow
    • 17 November 2015
    15 Comments

    In journalism, 'he said, she said' often functions as an evasion. Reporters' loyalty should be to accuracy, which isn't about compromise between extremes. When denialists and climate scientists take diametrically opposed stances, the truth doesn't lie somewhere in the middle. Sometimes, one side's right and the other's just wrong. The same can be said of reporting about the rightwing United Patriots Front. While they deny being fascists, that's what they are, and that's what we should call them.

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