Bashing baby boomers is becoming so passe. The Howard Government’s Intergenerational Report found that the ageing of the population does not constitute a crisis but rather a fairly manageable transition. Despite this, a number of commentators continue to insist that the age pension claims of a large cohort of boomers will put unsustainable pressure on
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
Who wants a nuclear power plant by Andrew Macintosh Burning up the landscape by Christian Downie Defending dissent by Sarah Maddison Mobile phones and consumer kids by Christian Downie What’s wrong with a SLAPP? by Brian Walters Muffins beat Affluenza The National Greenhouse Accounts and land clearing by Andrew Macintosh Woodchips or water? Legal protection
Drugs policy arouses strong emotions. People see drug users and fear the unknown. The traditional response from politicians, particularly conservatives, has been to exploit these fears for political gain. The outcome has been an over-reliance on law enforcement as a means of stamping out both the supply and use of harmful drugs. It is hoped
The Government dismissed the Institute’s report, claiming we don’t understand the Kyoto accounting rules and didn’t make adjustments for differences in methods. These claims are false (and are addressed in a paper available on the Institute’s website). Even if they were correct, the fact remains that NCAS is a black box: its data are not
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
Despite the fanfare that surrounds major events, the reality is that state and territory governments are often spending large sums of taxpayer money in attempts to divert events, tourists, jobs and associated revenue from one part of Australia to another, and from one industry to another.
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
The outcome for the broader Australian polity is that the knowledge and breadth of experience collected together in the NGO community is having much less influence on how we develop as a society than it should. Like individual citizens, community groups are being increasingly reluctant to engage in the democratic process because they no longer
Like individual citizens, community groups are being worn down and are increasingly reluctant to engage in the democratic process because they no longer believe that they can make a difference. At the same time, certain influential business lobbies have been brought into the fold, along with a few tame or uncritical NGOs such as Mission
The Government needs to overcome its ideological prejudice against all things environmental. Its conservative voter base will, if it hasn’t already. They realise that the effects of climate change will be felt in their lifetime and that material prosperity must go hand-in-hand with sound environmental stewardship.
Plans revealed this week to squeeze a further 1.1 million people into Sydney over the next 25 years will transform it into the nation’s least liveable city. Twenty years ago Sydney was less congested, slower, more friendly and had more green space. Unregulated population growth and timid planning are choking the city, a situation exacerbated