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SOCIAL ISSUES |

Crawford report a dull dud spiced by a big no to John Coates

Today’s media coverage is rightly hostile about the Crawford report, commissioned and welcomed by the Rudd Government, which recommends that Australia abandon its Olympic traditions and ambitions and accept a more realistic target. So much for excellence. The report recommends that additional government funding go to community sport (eg our many footy codes) rather than [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

Bonney Djuric, Parramatta Girls Home and the Forgotten Australians

This is the text of a piece I wrote for ABC Unleashed last year: On Wednesday last week, during ceremonies to mark the nation’s apology, Bonney Djuric gave Prime Minister Rudd a letter seeking his support for a living memorial to the Forgotten Australians and the Stolen Generations in Sydney’s western suburbs, on a site [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

More, not less, equality needed for economic growth

Now the attention of Australian policy-makers is turning to maximising prosperity, understood as GDP growth, over the next few years. The Australian’s Michael Stutchbury says this will require ‘tough-love’ policies. Usually, this is code for giving carrots to the rich and sticks to the poor. Tough for the bottom of society, great for the top, [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

Can Rudd save his ETS, or will it destroy him?

Rudd is a control freak. His government is run along command and control lines (read Cameron Stewart’s interesting piece in last Saturday’s Australian magazine). His media strategy is a campaign strategy. Win the day, stay in front.  Make your opponent the issue. Control the message. Make no mistakes. This is the goldfish in a bowl [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

Mark Scott’s religious affiliation

The November issue of the SMH’s Sydney magazine features a profile of the ABC’s managing director Mark Scott which contains this curious line on page 36: “Their scant private time is devoted to family; once identified as a prominent evangelical Christian, Scott now says he doesn’t attend any particular Church” Scott may not ‘attend’ any [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

NEWSFLASH: Bernard Salt discovers new acronym

Bernard Salt is no doubt a wonderful demographer, but he is also great at getting publicity. Salt knows the value of a bright new social trend, be it tree changing, sea changing or now Nettels. Yes, folks, Salt has interrogated the data (generously provided by taxpayers) and discovered (drumroll please) that many people are time [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

NSW government tries to stay relevant in health system future

In a well-executed media stunt (labelled an ‘exclusive’ by the Daily Telegraph, LOL) the NSW Government has come up with an idea to try and carve out a future in the (mis)management of the state’s health system. Apart from being an ‘exclusive’, the stunt also has two other elements designed to give it media appeal: [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

Simpsons and smoking; public health research sinks to a new low

From the ‘who funds this nonsense’ file comes this  ludicrous  quote: The researchers noted that even “in instances of smoking being reflected in a negative way, particularly among younger characters, could have an impact on prompting children to smoke cigarettes.” If anyone really believed this then surely we would immediately cancel all those anti-smoking ads? The [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

You can’t expect men to …

Here’s a great take on the Matthew Johns saga: Men are capable of reasoning and judgement, and indeed are expected to exercise it at all times in our society.  We’re not primal, ungovernable, raging beasts.  Nobody ever says “you can’t expect men to drive competently when they’re so aggressive”; “you can’t expect men not to [...]

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SOCIAL ISSUES |

Is group sex the same as sex with your mates?

Earlier this week I pointed to some fairly obvious homoerotic aspects of the enthusiasm of certain high profile rugby league players for group sex. Today, Annabel Crabb has written a brilliantly funny piece along the same lines. She’s good, she didn’t miss. You must read it!

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