CategoryAustralia

Joe Hockey ends the idea that Australia can help make poverty history

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Yesterday Treasurer Joe hockey announced that next year’s international aid budget would be slashed by $1 billion. This decision marked much more than the cutting of the aid budget. It marked the end of the idea that Australia could play a significant role in bringing extreme poverty to a halt. In the last decade a revolution occurred in the Australian aid program. Inspired by the...

Enough of the hate. It’s time for love.

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I’ve had enough of people who say they are followers of Jesus yet act with hate. This week brought the distressing news that the Westboro Baptist church plans to picket Robin Williams funeral. Believe it or not, the church’s website address is godhatesfags.com. The homepage includes a list of “sister” sites: GodhatesIslam.com; Godhatesthemedia.com; and Godhatestheworld.com...

Is Australia Being Islamicised?

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One of the objections I commonly hear to both taking in asylum seekers and our wider immigration program is a fear that we are being  Islamicised. This reflects a worry that most Muslims, if they had the chance, would vote to see sharia law imposed on the Australian population; that Muslims bring with them a violent culture; and/or that Muslim people simply won’t integrate into Australian...

Julie Bishop’s tortuous logic on foreign aid

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There it was again last night. Foreign Minister Julie Bishop on Channel 10’s The Project program offering up the Coalition’s tortuous logic on foreign aid: “We can’t borrow money from overseas, just to send back overseas again”. The 2014 – 2015 aid budget stands at $5,031.9 million, equal to 0.32% of our national income. Prior to the Coalition coming to power there...

Why I am a Republican. A Queen’s Birthday holiday reflection

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Today is the Queen’s Birthday holiday. Yet I suspect that not many of my fellow Australians will give much thought to the Queen nor her birthday. For most today is just another public holiday. Nonetheless, this public holiday always arouses my republican inclinations. I find it odd that Australians have a foreign monarch, for the institution is inherently un-Australian. It is elitist – only...

Some Things, Like Greed and Self Interest, Never Change.

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The Commission of Audit report released yesterday proves one thing: you can always trust the rich and powerful to defend their own interests at the expense of the disadvantaged and vulnerable. If the report’s recommendations are followed, which thankfully most of them won’t be, the minimum wage would be reduced from $622.20  to $488.87 and a single pensioner getting by on $421 per...

Pursing the Common Good. Where Christians are Getting It Wrong and How They Can Get it Right

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In the last few years I’ve noticed a shift in the language of politically engaged Christians. Increasingly rare is talk of Australia as a “Christian” nation whose heritage must be preserved and increasingly common is talk of “the common good”, with Christians asking how they can contribute to it This is a welcome change. I don’t think it’s possible for a...

Australia Day. A Time to Laugh and a Time to Cry

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I find myself conflicted this Australia Day. Do I laugh or cry? On the one hand I am a proud Australian. I love this country. I love the fact that I can go to a footy match, sit beside supporters of my opponents, and feel perfectly safe. I love our self deprecating sense of humour, that calling a mate a “silly bastard” can be a compliment. I love the cultural diversity of our nation...

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