Clive Hamilton left the Australia Institute at the end of February to devote himself to writing. Here he pens his last comment for the newsletter.
But is it acceptable for former government members to leave early purely because they have lost government? At the least, there should be recognition of the shirking of responsibility that this entails. There should also be some contribution towards the considerable costs of holding by-elections. Representing one’s constituency for the duration of the parliament is
From the moment it became plain that Labor would win the election, The Australian began to argue that a Rudd victory is in fact a victory for Howard. He has so much in common with Howard that, despite appearances, the victory of Rudd is another defeat for the left. Humbled by the new spirit of
The dawn of the new 42nd Parliament is a rare chance to draw a line under certain practices of the previous decade of Parliament, practices that had undermined some of the basic tenets of parliamentary democracy. The new tone has to be set from the outset. What precisely was wrong with our old Parliament? In
Australia After Howard What sort of government will Rudd Labor be? Clive Hamilton situates last month’s dramatic defeat of John Howard within broader historical trends.
Nearly 20 years ago I went through a process that is sometimes referred to as “the dark night of the soul”. It is a phase of spiritual life that many people experience. The phenomenon is well known in the Catholic Church in all traditions. Openness is a virtue in public life. What an impoverished world
Today’s little girls aren’t tottering around in mum’s high heels. These days, nothing could be more daggy for a primary school girl than pretending to be her mum, or any other normal adult. So – at the risk of sounding repetitive – everyone please take note: premature sexualisation has nothing to do with children’s creative
While we stigmatise fat people, perhaps they are behaving normally in a sick social environment. The answer then is not diets, drugs and surgery but a wholesale change in the culture of consumption, which itself is a reaction to the emptiness of affluence.
Ever wondered how the PR industry operates, its tactics and links to government and business? A new book, Inside Spin published by Allen & Unwin, reveals how spin doctors invisibly influence just about every news story we read. Author Bob Burton provides an inside look.
Turbulence ahead by Andrew Macintosh and Christian Downie Universities and fossil fuel capture by Christian Downie Silencing dissent: The Federal Government strikes by James Arvanitakis Grassroots campaign against sexualisation of children by Julie Gale See Paris and Die? by Steve Biddulph Academic economists call for Kyoto ratification by Clive Hamilton Insuring against catastrophic change by
As parents and professionals who work with children point out, the time and energy that they currently spend in trying to protect children from the advertising and media onslaught (as well as in healing the damage it causes) would be far better spent on the positive aspects of caring for children. In short, if government
Rather than being empowered, children are being exploited by the process of sexualisation. For children seeking to become empowered in an adult world, a more promising route is to focus on developing cognitive and emotional capacities that enable them to negotiate power relations more maturely and with less risk to themselves. There is nothing wrong
There cannot be a competitive market for water while the Government continues to subsidise agriculture through such things as drought assistance and half-price water delivery. All in all, the plan looks more like a deft political move than a serious attempt to solve our water problems. It is, as Shakespeare once said, all sound and
Sex and Children: A volatile mix by Emma Rush Playing politics with national security by Andrew Wilkie Religion and global warming by Kate Mannix Howard’s morality play by Andrew Macintosh Howard’s politics of the past by Clive Hamilton The changing climate of business by Molly Harriss Olson Dramatic changes to Land Rights law by Sean
Over the last fifteen years, much effort has gone into the preparation of sustainability reports. These are reports that provide information on social and environmental as well as economic matters. This has been done in the name of improved decision making, accountability and transparency. It has also been motivated by a desire to promote ecologically
Who listens to Alan Jones by Clive Hamilton Indonesia’s nuclear plans Are fossil fuel companies ‘capturing’ our universities? by Christian Downie School vouchers: update by Andrew Macintosh History wars and heritage omissions by Deb Wilkinson Rich boomer, poor boomer by Myra Hamilton Tourism subsidies are money down the drain by Christian Downie The use and
The government’s industrial relations changes were always going to be controversial, but it has done itself no favours in establishing a regime that is overseen by government agencies that are politically compromised. Until the Office of Workplace Relations and other similar agencies are truly independent of government, employees are justified in suspecting that there is
The Federal Government’s plans to repeal the cross-media ownership laws are due before Cabinet in the next few weeks. There is little doubt they will get the tick of approval and then slide through parliament – thereby ensuring greater concentration of media ownership and a loss of diversity in Australia’s media. The Australian media is
Quality of child care by Emma Rush New media – just more of the same by Christian Downie The nuclear debate warms up by Andrew Macintosh Losing faith in the official future by Richard Eckersley School Vouchers by Andrew Macintosh Dealing with America by John Langmore Equality of opportunity by Fred Argy A new approach
Corporate chains – which now own around a quarter of centres in Australia – offer the lowest quality of care on all indicators surveyed, in some cases markedly lower than that provided by community-based centres. Beyond tightening up the centre accreditation processes, as announced recently, the government should consider offering capital grants to new community-based
With evidence now appearing to suggest that the quality of care in corporate childcare centres is markedly lower than elsewhere, the Government will need to act to discourage any further domination of long day care in Australia by the corporate chains until it can be shown that the quality of the care they provide is
Our state and local governments have also been cowed by the cultural and economic momentum of the marketing industry and their squadrons of boosters and lickspittles in the media. In the relentless drive to attract advertisers’ dollars into supporting public facilities and events, the guardians of public morals have lost their way, blinded by the