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April 17, 2015
If changes to the GST in the form of an increased rate are allowed to go ahead without some balance being restored to the new versus second hand treatment of our housing stock, it is likely that genuine new housing supply will stall further.
Nation Building - Ross Elliott - 9 comments
 
You know you have a dog of a policy when the government, opposition and various minor parties agree it should be reformed, but the Greens and their cheer squad think it’s great.
Environment - David Leyonhjelm - 12 comments
 
The RSL is a case study for CEO's and HR managers on how not to let their workplaces or membership bases become geriatric institutions.
Society - Malcolm King - 6 comments
 




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Ambit Gambit - Our blog
Heat not hiding in the ocean

Ambit Gambit Anyone who understands physics, which excludes many prognosticators on climate change (yes, I’m thinking of you @beneltham*), understands that the oceans drive the climate. So it was always a bit of a stretch to think that the plateau in global temperatures of over the last 18 or so years was because the heat was hiding […]

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Thursday, April 16, 2015

Growing support for - and pledges of allegiance to - Islamic State by diverse Islamic terrorist groups world-wide are now creating horrific humanitarian problems for Christian communities in many countries
International - David Singer - 13 comments
 
A recent book, The Collapse of Western Civilization: A View From the Future by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway shines light on this perplexing question.
Environment - Evaggelos Vallianatos - 7 comments
 
It's an almost long forgotten historical fact that most trade was undertaken by local based currencies right upto the 20th Century. Australia had a number of colonial currencies before federation in 1901.
Economics - Murray Hunter - 4 comments
 
Recently a number of matai have raised the alarm about insufficient consultation about moves to free up customary lands for commercial leasing. It's unclear if they speak for the many or just a few.
International - David Morris - 2 comments
 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Gillian Triggs remained composed and dignified. She is a role model for all of us at the receiving end of such attacks in both public and domestic places.
Society - Sarah Russell - 37 comments
 
It is my hope and indeed my belief that the new Australian identity will come to see Muslim-Australians as Catholic-Australians, Italian-Australians, Irish-Australians, etc.… that is, both Muslim and Australian.
Law & Liberties - Abe Ata - 32 comments
 
It might seem easy to build more transport infrastructure given so much was built in the past. But in some cases we wouldn’t tolerate the same conditions that provided much of our legacy infrastructure.
Nation Building - Alan Davies - 6 comments
 
Those who refuse these rules will receive a visit from the fashion police, mainly consisting of dags, and be compelled to wear a safari suit.
Humour & Satire - Mark S. Lawson - 2 comments
 

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

It is a fact that people who have saltwater aquariums sometimes add CO2 to the water in order to increase coral growth and to increase plant growth.
Environment - Patrick Moore - 27 comments
 
On the surface, this is a fine epithet to attach to any profession – you do what you do because you want to do it.Yet other professions do not expect similar levels of extracurricular zeal and sappy self-sacrifice.
Education - Jemma Ward - 13 comments
 
Grumble, grumble. What has happened to our idea of progress? We are going backwards.
Society - Valerie Yule - 4 comments
 
Starting with the arbitrary division of the region by Western powers, the wars, revolutions, and scores of violent conflicts that followed have added layer upon layer of deep resentment and hatred.
International - Alon Ben-Meir - 3 comments
 
Despite this she jerks President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo’s strings, reminding all that the former furniture salesman is just a ‘party worker’ who wouldn’t have the top job had it not been for her imprimatur.
International - Duncan Graham - 1 comment
 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Is this week's Victorian parliamentary debate on a euthanasia bill the result of a Labor Greens deal?
Law & Liberties - Paul Russell - 5 comments
 
I wish Mr Baird and his Government every success in persuading the citizens of NSW that there really is a problem with the supply of gas to NSW people, that it won't go away, and that exploiting CSG can be done, responsibly.
Environment - Don Aitkin - 9 comments
 
In short, oil prices will increase as weekly EIA production numbers begin posting declines as we saw last week. Demand will increase. Inventories will start getting eaten into by midyear.
Economics - Dan Doyle - 2 comments
 
The state has a burgeoning public service, contracting manufacturing sector, rapidly rising unemployment, serious youth brain drain, recruitment age prejudice and nepotism and spreading urban decay in Adelaide's northern suburbs.
Economics - Malcolm King - 13 comments
 

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Cricket is the sport of the talented broadcaster, the forensic examiner who doesn't merely dissect a game as it takes place, but ponders its evolution.
Sport - Binoy Kampmark - 1 comment
 
If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, the late Australian cricket champion and commentator Richie Benaud must have been one of the most flattered men in the sporting world.
Sport - Mal Fletcher - 1 comment
 

Friday, April 10, 2015

Increasingly, renewable energy is being produced more cheaply than energy generated from fossil fuels and this trend is increasing.
Environment - Mike Pope - 17 comments
 
The world's largest Islamic nation shows there is another way.
Religion & Spirituality - Roger Smith - 7 comments
 
President Obama seems to have been unduly optimistic in triumphantly proclaiming the success of the P5+1 talks with Iran in Lausanne.
International - David Singer - 22 comments
 
Nevertheless the Prime Minister has shown himself to be accident-prone both in utterances and decisions. His errors have had a cumulative effect.
Domestic Politics - Chas Keys - 7 comments
 
Who'd have thought that the clearest voice to raise concerns about the film 'Fifty Shades of Grey' would belong to Russell Brand?
Health - Kay Stroud - 55 comments
 

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Separate to the secrecy, equally offensive is the exclusion of our largest trading partner and the world's second largest economy, China from the scandalously misnamed 'partnership'.
International - Jonathan J. Ariel - 5 comments
 
After almost 100 days in office Syriza isn't showing much of a plan to help Greece tackle its growing economic and bureaucratic problems
International - Fotis Kapetopoulos - 7 comments
 
There are no truths in China. Truth is relative. Truth is what the government says it is, and truth is what your mainland Chinese sources may manipulate if it serves their purpose.
International - Brian Hennessy - 5 comments
 
Will any political party ever again command a mandate to govern on its own? Will any party leader ever again speak with authority to and for a constituency beyond their own members and committed supporters?
Political Philosophy - Mal Fletcher - 20 comments
 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Laffer is most famous for his eponymous curve, which purports to show that cutting taxes on the rich raises extra tax revenue.
Economics - David Hetherington - 23 comments
 
The more controversial the cause, the less generous should be the privilege afforded to the charity and its donors.
Political Philosophy - Gary Johns - 8 comments
 
Israel cannot possibly be expected in these circumstances to negotiate with the PLO until Islamic State is finally degraded and destroyed.
International - David Singer - 9 comments
 
The main reason his investment in Burlington Northern Railroad was successful, was due to the fact that he made this investment during the 2008 crisis, when prices were low.
Environment - John Manfreda - 1 comment
 

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Joseph Stiglitz complimented the Government on its uniquely successful economic policy in saving Australia from the GFC which spread recession throughout Europe, North America and Asia including China.
Economics - Harold Levien - 17 comments
 
The EU and the US must insist that Iran, who has tremendous leverage on the Assad regime, modify its stance on Syria and play a constructive role to assist in bringing a political solution to end the tragic civil war.
International - Alon Ben-Meir - 14 comments
 
This breakthrough ultimately says to the euthanasia and assisted suicide argument that changing the law based on one individual’s circumstances at one solitary point in history is a denial of hope.
Law & Liberties - Paul Russell - 4 comments
 
The Abbott government seems to have an aversion to informed criticism and self reflection. It seems to be run as a separate and autonomous corporation bearing the hallmarks of many religious institutions with its high priests, dogma and secrecy.
Political Philosophy - Kellie Tranter - 9 comments
 
This data indicates that parents appear to be recognising My School's NAPLAN results only tell a small part of a school's story and perhaps what parents really want to know about a school isn't currently available on the site.
Education - David Robertson
 
The tendency is to like those who like us, to like those who offer us least harm, and to like those who benefit us. In that order probably.
Society - Michael Jensen - 2 comments
 

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Suddenly high profile gays such as Dolce and Gabbana are speaking up for children’s rights to be raised by their mother and father.
Law & Liberties - Lyle Shelton - 37 comments
 
The IS is the first of the modern Salafist movements to seize and hold territory. The caliphate is not just a future dream; it is real and now. It has all of the trappings of a modern state.
International - Felix Imonti - 67 comments
 
In fact, as advisers involved with the Rudd government's massive expansion of the original, modest Howard scheme in 2009 whisper, the real problem is major policy blunders by that government.
Environment - Mark S. Lawson - 7 comments
 
Our challenge is not to say goodbye; it is to be more magnanimous in his death than we were in his life and to acknowledge this giant, who was surely one of us.
Domestic Politics - Craig Laundy - 13 comments
 
In just seven short years, we have swapped and dropped our Prime Ministers no less than four times. If Tony Abbott had been dumped by his party earlier this year, we would have outstripped even Italy’s prime ministerial turnover rate.
Religion & Spirituality - Adam Ch'ng - 17 comments
 

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

The white paper complains that 70 per cent of Commonwealth tax revenue is drawn from personal and company taxes. But what is the alternative? A higher GST? More user pays?
Economics - Tristan Ewins - 19 comments
 
Xi Jinping knows that for the nation to prosper (economically and socially) the CCP must voluntarily loosen its grip on power and allow Chinese society to flourish.
International - Brian Hennessy
 
Just as Marx thought, with some justification, that religion kept people in their place, sport has the same narcotic influence on populations. It promotes a shallow tribalism and distracts us from the real concerns of life.
Sport - Peter Sellick - 12 comments
 
To those associated with the sectarian discourse surrounding a vote to forever legislate Catholic school funding at 25% of the cost of a state school education I say, stop looking for an argument and study the facts.
Education - Stephen Elder - 17 comments
 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

When electricity networks are privatised, as they were in Victoria, the new, profit-oriented owners tend to constrain their labour costs, much to the annoyance of their unionised workforce.
Economics - David Leyonhjelm - 17 comments
 
US diplomatic protection and military funding, together with other factors, has sent an implicit message that the Occupation, settlements and militarism are something the world can live with.
International - Annabel McGoldrick - 10 comments
 
Unfortunately this decision actually entrenches inequality by expressly requiring that male and female candidates are treated differently.
Law & Liberties - Lorraine Finlay - 5 comments
 
It only took Lee Kuan Yew 10 years to clean up Singapore's Rivers, but the Brisbane River is still riddled with rubbish and infection.
Environment - Patrick Dixon - 5 comments
 

Monday, March 30, 2015

The very different results in Lakemba and Auburn, adjacent seats with high Muslim populations, points to the influence of the Lebanese Muslim Association and its activist president Samier Dandan.
Domestic Politics - Andrew Jakubowicz - 2 comments
 
The issue of whether foreign investors should be allowed to bid for privatised power assets bubbled along throughout the NSW election campaign.
Economics - James Laurenceson - 4 comments
 
The workers compensation scheme covering federal public servants and others is in need of reform.
Law & Liberties - Wendy Bonython - 1 comment
 
Is environmental pollution the inevitable consequence of population increase, or is it at least in part the product of human behaviour?
Environment - Max Thomas - 12 comments
 
Companies are working on driverless cars, fulfilling the forecasts that they will soon be a reality on the roads.
Science & Technology - Darrell Delamaide - 11 comments
 

Friday, March 27, 2015

While it has been subject to some criticism, the real issue missing from the IGR is modelling of one entire side of the Budget – the tax side. As a result, an opportunity has been missed to enable a more informed discussion for the Tax White Paper.
Economics - Michael Potter - 7 comments
 
Petitions are a form of activism-light. If you're really serious about supporting a particular change, you'll probably get involved in a more rubber-hits-the-road way.
Law & Liberties - Mal Fletcher - 11 comments
 
Even in 2009 when he publically endorsed the establishment of a Palestinian state, he never refuted the claims of his closest associates that he was deceiving the Americans.
International - George Browning - 12 comments
 
Do President Obama and his Press Secretary – Josh Earnest – agree with the above definitions when they utter these commonly used terms almost daily?
International - David Singer
 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Research from the American Water Works Association reveals that 'water scarcity linked to climate change is now a global problem playing a direct role in aggravating major conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa.'
Environment - Kellie Tranter - 22 comments
 
Probably more surprising is the finding that emissions from cycling and walking are around 40% of those for driving.
Environment - Alan Davies - 4 comments
 
On Sydney's fringe, the Blue Mountains succeeded in its most immediate challenges but then retreated into an intense borough-based eco-conservatism. The consequences came to be akin to a cancer.
Political Philosophy - Robert Gibbons
 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

When an act of terrorism occurs, the message from authorities after the dust has settled is loud and clear – do not change the way you live, do not give into fear. That way the terrorists will have won.
Law & Liberties - Evelyn Tsitas - 94 comments
 
While the Prime Minister's performance, and the recent attempted spill motion, has been cause for much chatter about the Liberal Party's leadership, there is in fact a deeper existential crisis within the party that needs to be explored.
Political Philosophy - Grant Wyeth - 4 comments
 
Major banks are suffering huge losses from both directly backing some struggling oil companies, but also from buying high-yield debt that is now going sour.
Economics - Nicholas Cunningham - 4 comments
 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

I welcome the release of government commissioned report by former integrity commissioner Phillip Moss into claims of sexual harassment and abuse inside the Australian-funded Nauru immigration detention centre.
Law & Liberties - Sev Ozdowski - 7 comments
 
Santos, Woodside Energy and Hancock Coal were some of the companies that donated more than $1.1 million to the major parties. The implications for democracy are deeply concerning.
Domestic Politics - Lee Rhiannon - 8 comments
 
'People don't want science, they want certainty,' according to Bertrand Russell
Science & Technology - Max Thomas - 9 comments
 
In a reversal of previous relations, the Sahelian states, such as Chad and Niger, see Libya as a problem they need to try to fix.
International - Philip Eliason - 4 comments
 

Monday, March 23, 2015

If our Senate votes on Thursday to institute 'marriage' without a woman, they are voting to institute families without a mother.
Law & Liberties - David van Gend - 31 comments
 
The starkest example of this search for reproductive perfection is manifest in the spectacular decrease in the numbers of children in our community with Down syndrome.
Law & Liberties - Chris Meney - 7 comments
 
In 1981 I gained employment when the Fraser government created the Australian Federal Human Rights Commission under the Chairmanship of Dame Roma Mitchell.
Domestic Politics - Sev Ozdowski - 1 comment
 
Various Australian Labor prime ministers were quick to the tribute podium, finding their own progressive mirror in the works of a man which the Left down-under historically reviled.
Domestic Politics - Binoy Kampmark - 4 comments
 
The middle and outer suburbs may not capture the interest of intellectual elites or (with some exceptions) provide the homes of the wealthiest in our society, but they do continue to house the vast majority of Australians.
Nation Building - Ross Elliott - 1 comment
 
The two poles of atheism, the contention that there is no evidence for the existence of a supernatural being and the irrationality, immaturity and superstition of believers is common fodder for modern atheists.
Religion & Spirituality - Peter Sellick - 107 comments
 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

When it counted, Malcolm Fraser was a man of courage who acted in the national interest in a way that often clashed with his image, and party interest.
Domestic Politics - Collin Myers - 9 comments
 

Friday, March 20, 2015

The largely silent Swedish Prosecution Authority has been overwhelmed with a barrage of criticism from Team Assange despite Sweden winning seven court hearings to maintain the integrity of their European Arrest Warrant.
Law & Liberties - Sandra K Eckersley - 15 comments
 
Under Swan as Treasurer the AGR was absurdly optimistic because it was written in the middle of a boom. Under Hockey we get pessimism because we are in a decline.
Economics - Syd Hickman - 11 comments
 
But just when it seemed that the Zionist camp would replace the nationalist camp, the crafty Netanyahu began pulling rabbits out of his hat.
International - Neve Gordon - 14 comments
 
If government is to deliver more jobs, welcoming greater foreign investment and continuing to grow our residential and industrial development pipeline will also be necessary.
Nation Building - Brendan Rowswell - 1 comment
 
Additionally, whereas your typical desalination plant returns only about 35% of the water, Saltech technology can return 97%, and this is a key factor in the economics and environmentally positive attributes of the technology.
Environment - James Stafford - 6 comments
 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

If the deal changes does that involve accepting that resources will no longer be allocated or distributed according to social or moral objectives?
Society - Kellie Tranter - 9 comments
 
. . . in which the author takes issue with some criticisms of the Bureau's forecasting of Tropical Cyclone Marcia, not perfect but better than painted.
Science & Technology - Chas Keys - 7 comments
 
If you’re going to switch off mid-climate change story, there is a strong disincentive to cover it.
Environment - Emily Arlidge - 10 comments
 
The central premise of Oscar Archer's promotion of this nuclear chain of events is that Australia should go out on a limb – be the first country in the world to import nuclear wastes and to order a mass purchase of PRISM reactors.
Environment - Noel Wauchope - 13 comments
 

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