End these Schoolboy Antics Now!

MarriageEqualityUSMuch has been said about the divisive nature of a plebiscite to decide the question of same-sex marriage. Much has been said about the simplicity of a parliamentary vote.

Politics is a cruel animal when it comes to delivering on divisive issues. It reduces otherwise intelligent people to the level of school children misbehaving in the playground. Nothing demonstrates this better than the marriage equality issue.

 

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

What’s happening with the Labour Force?

marBefore you believe all the spin that economists and politicians put on the latestLabour Force figures, you would have to think that there’s something odd going on with November’s labour market, just as there was with the figures for October 2015.

The most glaring oddity for the November figures is the number of jobs created,71,400 in total, of which 29,700 were part time.

 

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

Drug Law Reform: The issue we should be debating

saveRecently, Greens leader Richard Di Natale stepped up to the plate and called for bipartisan support for drug law reform. He believes we can start by adopting the Portugal approach which involves treating drug addiction as a medical issue rather than a criminal matter.

Calling for bipartisan support for drug law reform among our current political representatives these days would be like asking ISIS to join the Vatican in calling for marriage equality. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try.

Read more at: The Australian Independent Media Network

Printing Money Causes Inflation?

Beyond Highbrow - Robert Lindsay

Oh really now?

It is nearly a law of modern economics that if the government prints money, this automatically causes inflation. It rests on some dubious assumptions, mostly that there is now more money in the marketplace chasing the same amount of good, and that therefore, the new money must cause some sort of demand inflation.

But I reiterate, there is absolutely no ipso facto law of economics that states that printing money automatically causes inflation, lowers the value of one’s currency, or raises interest rates.

Why would printing money lower the value of one’s currrency? It doesn’t. If your currency is backed up by something of real worth, such as gold, I suppose that printing more money would reduce the value of one’s currency. After all, you now have more dollars for the same amount of gold, so the dollar automatically declines in value.

But if your currency is…

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Democracy Usurped

How do we reinvent democracy? How do we wind it back to the way it was practiced in the past, when the voice of the people determined the future direction of the country.

The Australian Independent Media Network

Democracy 1 I have said it before but it deserves repeating. Democracy is not failing us; it is we who fail democracy when we fail to actively engage with it. Democracy, as we practice it today, has lost its essential direction and has been usurped by divisive, vitriolic, jingoistic spin. Democracy today is no longer government of, by and for the people. It is government of the most influential, the loudest shock jock, the focus group, the public relations consultant and whoever else is able to exercise their lust for power. This dysfunctional gathering ignores concern for national unity and prosperity. The voice of the special interest group has come to dominate the present model. Debate, divide and conquer is the aim and its tactic is to fragment the collective energy of the nation, split it down the middle, weaken its resolve and make it easier for vested interests to have their…

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A Soldier’s Story

One such story is that of my grandfather, Frederick Harrison Capper, who prior to serving on the Western Front in 1916, also served in the Boer War of 1899 in South Africa.

The Australian Independent Media Network

Anzac day Anzac Day stories abound this time of year and remind us of sacrifices made, heroic deeds undertaken and the absurdity of wars. This day is special because of that. We take time out to remember. We listen to stories of great heroism in the face of incompetent decisions by senior military staff. We revile at the carnage on both sides and in the process are forced to examine what makes humans treat each other this way. Three constants stand out among these stories. They are all interesting, they are all informative and they have embedded within each of us an indelible connection to someone or something associated with those who have served. They also enrich our knowledge and have contributed to an ever more revealing and grander story of our country’s history. Yet, despite the great victories and defeats, the logistics, the weaponry, the massing of great armies, it is…

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In the Clash of Ideologies, Language Wins the War

The rhetoric of conservative ideology is cleverly employed over time to erode the positive public perception of ideas and institutions which are seen as contrary to the the right-wing world-view.

The Australian Independent Media Network

Image courtesy of the australian.com.au Image courtesy of the australian.com.au

Jim Morrison famously and prophetically said, “Whoever controls the media, controls the minds”. 

This is certainly the case in Australia.

In this guest post Loz Lawrey looks at how the media – the Murdoch media in particular – shape out attitudes and opinions.

In 1988, Professor Noam Chomsky reminded us that the media “serve, and propagandise on behalf of, the powerful societal interests that control and finance them” (1). Never has this fact been more blatantly obvious than it is today.

The glaring anti-Labor/Greens bias on display by the Murdoch-owned news media during the term of the Gillard Government exaggerated Labor’s dysfunction and gave credibility to a Liberal/National opposition devoid of policies or ideas, other than a plan to hand decision-making over to commercial vested interests.

Today much of the mainstream media’s energy is spent fulfilling the roles of apologist and spin doctor for a…

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Round The World in 79 Days

Melbourne . Auckland . Houston . Orlando . Washington DC . New York . Madrid . Malaga . Barcelona . Geneva . Brig . St. Moritz . Paris . Brussels . Berlin . Pragua . Budapest . Zagreb . Ljubljana . Venice . Koto . Corfu . Valletta . Catania . Naples . Rome . Brindisi . Bangkok . Tokyo . Mt. Fuji . Kyoto . Hiroshima . Melbourne

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