section: Australia

There are more than 200 results, only the first 200 are displayed here.

  • AUSTRALIA

    The Christmas story's whisper from the edges

    • John Falzon
    • 17 December 2013
    13 Comments

    Recently Pope Francis blasted the so-called trickle-down economic theories in his apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium. Some will scorn his message as naive at best and dangerous at worst, while others will regard it as an urgent enkindling of hope in the face of degradation and despair. The Christmas story hints that another kind of world is possible.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    High Court leaves same sex marriage door ajar

    • Frank Brennan
    • 16 December 2013
    30 Comments

    Until now, there was some doubt whether the Parliament's constitutional power to make laws with respect to marriage would be broad enough to include laws with respect to same sex marriage. The High Court has put this matter beyond doubt with all six sitting judges affirming that 'marriage' for the purposes of defining the constitutional power of the Parliament could not be confined to marriage in the traditional Christian sense.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Without jobs we're Scrooged

    • Michael Mullins
    • 16 December 2013
    9 Comments

    Pope Francis says: 'Work means dignity, work means taking food home, work means loving!' Some commentators criticise the government for taking an active role in maintaining employment through subsidising unprofitable industries. They miss the point that it's the government's job to promote the wellbeing of the people, and having a job is so fundamental to living in modern society.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Who killed the car industry?

    • Ray Cassin
    • 13 December 2013
    33 Comments

    The immediate responsibility for this looming economic disaster rests with the Abbott Government, and not merely because of its use of a bullying speech in Parliament by the Treasurer, Joe Hockey, to goad Holden into announcing a decision that its masters in Detroit had probably already taken. In the longer term, this should be seen as a bipartisan disaster. What happened this week was the culmination of a process that began under Hawke.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Coalition stirs the ghost of Jimmie Blacksmith

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 12 December 2013
    5 Comments

    More than a century after Federation, Australia has yet to resolve this tension between a romantic notion of what 'Australia' is, and the depravities that were undertaken to attain it. It may be couched in more polite terms, but it rears its head in ham-fisted and fundamentally disrespectful approaches to Indigenous policy, such as recent moves by the Coalition Government that threaten to undercut the spirit of Native Title legislation.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A bad Christmas for refugees

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 10 December 2013
    11 Comments

    Last week asylum seekers had a small win only to have it snatched away, and then were confronted by a more serious attack. Those working with asylum seekers have learned to expect abuse and derision from governments directed against asylum seekers and those helping them. Labor is only moderately better than the Coalition, but at least they occasionally made positive decisions. However these recent events have reached a new nadir.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Don't cry for the flying kangaroo

    • Michael Mullins
    • 09 December 2013
    6 Comments

    No patriotic Australian wants to see Qantas go out of business. But the principles of both good business and social inclusion demand the government not thwart competition from Virgin and its cashed up foreign shareholders. In two decades, competition has lowered fares and made it possible for less privileged Australians to fly.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Ghost of weddings past, present and future

    • Brian Matthews
    • 06 December 2013
    6 Comments

    Is there a spirit of place, a kind of psychological imprint that endows a particular location? There are spots along the Coorong in South Australia where, as twilight deepens, you could swear that wraith-like, dark figures are moving through the dunes. Recent events made me wonder if the legendary William Buckley lives on in that way on Victoria's Bellarine Peninsula, where he lived for 32 years among the local Wataurong people.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    A frank chat about mental illness

    • Georgina Laidlaw
    • 06 December 2013
    13 Comments

    Mental illness begets mental illness. One glance at the reportage on the Royal Commission into child sex abuse proves that. We won't discuss loved ones' mental health because to do so feels like a betrayal. We won't talk about our own mental health because what right do we have to be unhappy? But ill heath is not a right. Suffering is not indulgence. If you're telling yourself that, shut the hell up.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    They call him backflipper, but Gonski's still sliding

    • Ray Cassin
    • 04 December 2013
    9 Comments

    The Education Minister Christopher Pyne has spun the latest developments on education funding reforms as having saved Gonski and achieved what Labor could not. But it is an achievement derived from surrendering oversight of how the money will be spent. If public schools continue to be the losers in the battle for funds, the reversals of the past fortnight will be remembered as the start of a slow burn for the Abbott Government.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    G-G Bryce breaks bold not bland

    • John Warhurst
    • 03 December 2013
    23 Comments

    Governor-General Quentin Bryce's brief interventions on same sex marriage and the republic, though careful and aspirational, may submerge her earlier thoughts. She may come to regret not delaying them until after she leaves office. But more attention has been focused on the monarchy-republic issue when really the more instructive issue for the office of governor-general is the same sex marriage question.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Trott a hero for quitting the Ashes

    • Michael Mullins
    • 02 December 2013
    2 Comments

    English batsman Jonathan Trott was pilloried in some media comments because he abandoned his team because he felt 'stressed'. We should be celebrating the fact that a high profile male sportsman finds that he can declare he has a stress-related illness and then seek help for it.

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