In this week’s ICB, The Punch calls bullshit on Shadow Immigration Minister and regular Punch contributor Scott Morrison, for citing a thing called the Social Cohesion Index at yesterday’s National Press Club address to show that Australia is going down the gurgler under Labor.
There are any number of indicators which Morrison might’ve chosen to bolster that increasingly popular thesis. Yet he chose an obscure, little known indicator, and if you ask us, there’s a sneaky reason why he did it.
Morrison, in short, was dog whistling. In a speech littered with references to asylum seekers, the Member for Cook thundered “it is a real concern that social cohesion in Australia has declined by 8.6% since the Labor government was elected. His inference was clear: All those illegal immigrants are tearing us apart.
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The campaign tactics of all major parties in the NSW election proved we live in an atmosphere where truth is negotiable and lying is routinely accepted as a political necessity.
The result is widespread public cynicism that often masquerades as humour - but is, in fact, an excellent form of crowd control.
We do not expect our politicians to amount to much, so we are neither surprised nor particularly upset when they don’t. Rather than demand reform, we tell cynical jokes and are bemused by their brazen immorality.
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I respect Justin Bieber. Not begrudgingly respect—no, no, no. Plain, vanilla, true, deep respect. The kid’s good. I can acknowledge this.
There is no doubting that the immense Bieber whinging permeating through the (adult) world of social media is vastly unfounded. Of course, such facts won’t bother those who’ve gleefully ingested the Haterade.
One has to wonder if we’ve just become more adept at smugness for smugness’ sake - because it’s definitely not the music industry that’s changed.
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So, radio personality Jackie O crossed a quiet, leafy, Double Bay pedestrian crossing while bottle-feeding her six-week-old daughter and made the mistake of being photographed.
Mothercraft and Nannies director, Jenni Waldron, tut-tutted in the Daily Telegraph that “it would be best to sit comfortably in a chair and hold your baby correctly while feeding”. She was probably caught off guard too.
Jackie felt compelled to explain herself on air: ‘I was running late and Kitty was screaming…’. Yes. I feel like doing that myself when I read stories like this.
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A growing population is not the result of over-zealous politicians and bureaucrats or big business trying to expand their market.
It is a result of Australians being healthier, living longer, and having more children. It is because people from around the world want to come here to work, travel, live and study.
Population growth is neither an impending disaster nor something we should blindly strive for—it is simply happening as a result of our economic progress and the collective desires of millions of people.
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Dr Gill Hicks is the Australian-born founder of London-based not-for-profit M.A.D for Peace, and a motivational speaker, author, curator, and trustee for several cultural organisations. She began her career as a speaker in the wake of the 2005 London bombings: Hicks was the last living victim rescued. Both her legs were amputated below the knee, and her injuries were so severe that she was initially not expected to live. She was admitted to St Thomas’ Hospital without an identity - she was labelled only as ‘One Unknown’.
Q. What do you think is the biggest threat to peace within Australia?
A. The greatest threat to peace within any country, in my opinion, is division, identity, fear and ignorance.
As we witnessed with the London bombings of 2005, those responsible were not from other lands, the threat was not external – but internal – the four bombers were raised and schooled within the UK – they were British citizens.
Peace, I believe, does need to be defined before we can discuss firstly what it is, and how we achieve it. The core of the work within my not-for-profit organisation, M.A.D. for Peace, focuses on the responsibility of the individual to create an environment in which he/she has choice in every word and action – ensuring that those words and actions are positive and/or constructive. We believe that peace is within – and that peace starts with you.
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A friend recently told me of his horror when a colleague asked a co-worker why she only had one child.
It was a dangerous question to ask a mere acquaintance in front of the rest of the office. What if the answer had been a heart-breaking miscarriage? Marital disharmony? A crippling amount of debt? Infertility?
No doubt the 21-year-old woman’s thoughtless question left her older workmates clucking their tongues at Gen Y’s arrogance and lack of manners.
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Welcome to Thursday at The Punch. What’s on your mind?
Al Gore was born in Washington D.C on this day in 1948. The 45th Vice President of the United States, a business man and an environmentalist, Gore also loves going in for the big pash with wife, Tipper.
Check these out:
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If a protestor at the carbon tax rally last week had held up a sign saying Prime Minister Julia Gillard was a “dead carcass, swinging in the breeze”, what would the reaction have been?
Vitriol is part of political life. But there is no one who can spew it out with the calculated cruelty and contempt of former PM Paul Keating. He could craft the sort of insults that other politicians would be proud to be associated with.
Mr Keating has now made headlines for his attack on John Robertson, NSW MP and potential party leader. He said Robertson wore the political deaths of a couple of dozen Labor members around his neck, and was a “lead weight” in Gillard’s political saddlebags. It was not a bad effort. It wasn’t his best.
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Dr Phillip Nitschke’s pre-emptive move to set up a euthanasia clinic in Adelaide shows he has missed the purpose of the legislation before the Parliament.
The Criminal Law Consolidation (Medical Defences – End of Life Arrangements) Bill 2011 is purely aimed at giving a family doctor who has a long history with their patient the ability to use this legislation as a defence against a criminal charge should the medication given to their patient at the request of the patient result in the patient’s death.
The legislation does not legalise voluntary euthanasia. The legislation does not legalise assisted suicide.
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