keywords: Pieces Of Ease And Grace

  • AUSTRALIA

    The case for pill testing at music festivals

    • Susie Garrard
    • 29 August 2016
    8 Comments

    As tickets go on sale for this year's round of music festivals - Falls, Defqon, Bluefest, Lost Paradise, to name a few - organisers still have no means to counteract unsafe drug use. Recent years have seen an increase in drug related injuries and fatalities at festivals. The debate as to how to counteract this worrying trend is ongoing, and tricky to navigate due its subjective nature. Yet when zero tolerance policies clearly haven't worked, it's time to turn to harm minimisation measures.

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  • ECONOMICS

    How financial markets are stymying climate action

    • David James
    • 15 June 2016
    7 Comments

    There is little doubt that the means to dramatically reduce the amount of pollution produced by developed economies is already theoretically available. It is perfectly possible to redesign industrial systems so that they do not pollute and do not consume finite resources at a rate that is unsustainable. But it requires a radical shift - and the biggest barrier to that shift occurring, the financial markets, is barely even mentioned in discussions of the challenge.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Budget more slow-burn than big bang

    • Jackie Brady
    • 14 May 2014
    3 Comments

    The Budget does not signal an end to the 'age of entitlement', as there are still plenty of beneficiaries of government expenditure or foregone revenue. You don't need to be an economist to see that collectively the Budget measures will impact negatively on the income levels of the poor and disadvantaged. The discussion now must be who will pick up the pieces left behind by Government in developing a system with obvious gaps.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    What the postmaster saw

    • Brian Matthews
    • 08 November 2013
    7 Comments

    Within an hour the shop is humming with talk and movement. Mac is courteous, but has some iron rules. A woman who talks ceaselessly into her mobile phone receives a steely glare and silence. Someone with both ears plugged into his iPod finds Mac has also suddenly gone deaf. Each new arrival is threaded into a sort of endless conversation which functions at two levels — greetings to the customer and side-of-the-mouth asides to me.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    University turning point

    • Brian Matthews
    • 11 October 2013
    4 Comments

    My first year at university was a time of exquisite confusion and crippling diffidence. The only way I could see to climb the mountain of difficulties my studies seemed to present was to work harder. After one late-night stint in the library, over a cup of the 'caf's' execrable coffee, my friend gave me a book. 'Don't read it on the tram going home,' he said, 'you might embarrass yourself.'

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Election day reflections on religion in the public square

    • Frank Brennan
    • 07 September 2013
    12 Comments

    How clever of you to choose the day of the federal election for me to offer these reflections.  I come amongst you, not as a publisher or journalist but as an advocate in the public square animated by my own religious tradition as a Jesuit and Catholic priest engaged on human rights issues in a robustly pluralistic democratic society.

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  • RELIGION

    Clobbering religious gay prejudice

    • Michael Kirby
    • 22 May 2013
    32 Comments

    The 2011 book Five Uneasy Pieces offered an alternative reading of the so-called 'clobber passages' that are at the core of religious unease about homosexuality. A follow-up volume pushes the envelope further by examining the biblical recognition of the variety of human love beyond traditional marriage.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Australia in a sorry state as Gonski faces failure

    • Ray Cassin
    • 17 April 2013
    6 Comments

    If the states give Gillard's Gonski education proposals the thumbs-down, as is expected to happen at Friday's COAG meeting, it will not be the first time since Labor's return to office in 2007 that Australia's creaking constitutional arrangements have made fundamental reform impossible.

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  • RELIGION

    Mabo 20 years on

    • Frank Brennan
    • 29 October 2012

    'Though land rights and self-determination provide no utopia for the contemporary indigenous Australian community, they have belatedly put right an ancient wrong. The cost and inconvenience are unavoidable. Terra nullius is no longer an option.' Full text is from Fr Frank Brennan's keynote speech at the Central Queensland Law Association Conference, Mercure Capricorn Resort, Yeppoon, 27 October 2012.

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  • RELIGION

    Refugee on the road to Jericho (a parable)

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 17 August 2012
    29 Comments

    On the morrow when the Samaritan departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the innkeeper, and asked him to take care of the recuperating fugitive. But the innkeeper thought unto himself, 'Too many fugitives have died along this road. They greatly anger the people and must be prevented.'

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Across the purgatory sea to Botany Bay

    • Maria Takolander
    • 17 July 2012
    3 Comments

    Sophie, a Malagay slave in Mauritius, torched a barn housing a collection of leather straps — the flames soaring like the sounds of the black horses inside — and was packed off in a ship-sized crate to New South Wales.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Timor Diggers' guerilla war

    • Paul Cleary
    • 24 August 2010
    3 Comments

    Kevin Rudd's failure to embrace the Timor legend with more imagination and substance was a missed opportunity to connect with Labor's Second World War legacy. Wartime Prime Minister John Curtin saw the guerilla war in Timor as a unique and significant part of turning back the Japanese tide.

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