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Category Archives: Politics

Shame and Stigma on Struggle Street

Struggle Street framed poverty as a combination of genetic inheritance and natural disaster – a barrier to be overcome only through ceaseless positive effort. Those who sabotage themselves through bad choices are therefore fair targets for our scorn, while those who gain employment or remain sober deserve praise for overcoming the odds. The deserving and undeserving poor, in other words. What an old story. Read more »

Freedom and asylum: The photography of Andy Drewitt

Andy Drewitt’s photographs of asylum seekers seek to humanise an often overblown debate. Rather than the usual images of trauma and flight, his work focuses on what people do once they have the freedom to make decisions based on enjoyment, not just survival. Read more »

Petrol, Sweat and Whiskey: What Killing the Car Industry Means for Adelaide’s Working Class North

Everyone was stunned. No one wanted to believe it. Holden was ‘bigger than the Roman Empire’, as one former Holden worker put it. It wasn’t going anywhere. Read more »

Lockup or Lockout: The NSW Government’s Response to Alcohol-Related Violence

It’s a Saturday night in Kings Cross, Sydney. The famous neon Coca Cola sign flashes an enticing red light, promising a good night on the town. It’s 11pm and a mob of riot police stand awkwardly, anticipating trouble. Those spilling from the taxis gingerly straighten themselves as they file past. Read more »

Beneath the Surface: Behind the Battle for Hearts, Minds and the Great Barrier Reef

A moment of anxiety follows the plunge, backwards, off the side of a boat into the tropical waters of the Great Barrier Reef. Entering a realm in which humans are out of place, the world beneath the surface is an alien environment. It is, literally, a plunge into the unknown. Read more »

Living Side by Side: Multiculturalism at Home and Abroad

It all seems quite idyllic – people of varying nationalities, religions and cultures coexisting peacefully. It could be a blueprint for the perfect multicultural society. However, there’s something beneath the surface that is troubling to the western notion of modern liberalism. Read more »

Fear, loathing, and the erosion of civil liberties

The hysteria currently being concocted by Australia’s political leaders is a smokescreen for the more serious threat facing everyone – an attack of the very freedoms and values our nation has been built on. Read more »

Back inside: Life on the Syrian-Turkish border

In Turkey, less than 50 kilometres from the border, Syrians have chosen their favourite cafes, have opened Aleppine sweet shops and set up stores in the old city. Read more »

Why #whitehousegate matters

A few days after the release of the budget, in which the Coalition government announced it was spreading the burden by increasing university fees, cutting school funding, and cutting welfare for young people comes a story that confirms what many already suspect to be the nature of opportunity: it’s much easier to come by if you’re born into privilege. Read more »

When does lobbying become corruption?

Whether it’s Clive Palmer buying his way into parliament, the recent, varied ICAC revelations of dodgy fundraising in the NSW Liberal party, or the refusal or inability of successive governments to effectively tackle powerful corporate interests in industries like gambling, mining, media, and junk food, there is a feeling among many Australians that democracy is up for sale. Read more »