A Robert De Niro Theory of Post-Truth: ‘Are you talking to me?’

A Robert De Niro Theory of Post-Truth: ‘Are you talking to me?’

Colin Wight

theconversation.com | 17 November 2017

So where is post-truth located, and how did we get here? Post-truth resides not in the realm of the production, but in the realm of reception. If lies, dissembling, spinning, propaganda and the creation of bullshit have always been part and parcel of politics, then what has changed is how publics respond to them.

It’s unrealistic to expect MPs to follow the view of the people who elected them every time

It’s unrealistic to expect MPs to follow the view of the people who elected them every time

Gregory Melleuish

 

theconversation.com | 17 November 2017

The same-sex marriage survey results showed up which members of parliament voted in a starkly opposite fashion to those in their electorates. Some voters may think it's the duty of their MP to vote in the way they do. But political theory shows this doesn't work: our mixed model of representation does bind not members to the instructions of their constituents.

Dastyari: high number of no votes in Labor seats shows ‘huge disconnect’

Dastyari: high number of no votes in Labor seats shows ‘huge disconnect’

Michael McGowan

theguardian.com | 16 November 2017

The high proportion of no voters in Labor-held seats in western Sydney shows a “huge disconnect” between the party’s traditional heartland and its more socially progressive agenda, the prominent senator Sam Dastyari says.

The marriage equality survey is won, but the battle against discrimination continues

The marriage equality survey is won, but the battle against discrimination continues

Timothy W. Jones

theconversation.com | 15 November 2017

Churches have been exempt from sex discrimination laws for years – now those opposed to same-sex marriage want that exemption to be extended to individuals. But, he suggests, “Arguing that religious sensitivities only need protecting with regard to sexuality, and no other area of religious conviction, suggests that this is not about freedom of religion, but about legitimising homophobia”.

Protecting religious freedom after “Yes”

Protecting religious freedom after “Yes”

Neil James Foster

lawandreligionaustralia.blog | 14 November 2017

The Draft Marriage Amendment Bill released by Sen. James Paterson, a Liberal Party member who personally supports same sex marriage, is a perfectly reasonable attempt to provide an appropriate balance between effecting change while providing protection for religious freedom, and should be supported.

Demand for euthanasia surges in the Netherlands

Demand for euthanasia surges in the Netherlands

Michael Cook

bioedge.org | 11 November 2017

Euthanasia is becoming so popular in the Netherlands that the country’s only dedicated death clinic cannot keep up with the demand.

"There is no dispute about the good intentions of the people at the end of life clinic. [But] they may have become too used to doing euthanasia. Yes, they have expertise but they are too experienced. You should never get used to helping someone die.” - Theo Boer

 

Atheist Convention cancelled due to lack of interest

Atheist Convention cancelled due to lack of interest

Michael Jensen

smh.com.au | 8 November 2017

I'm disappointed that ‘Reason to Hope’, the third Global Atheist Convention scheduled for Melbourne in February 2018, has been cancelled due of 'lack of interest'. I say that as someone who believes in God. A full and frank discussion of fundamental ideas is healthy and makes us better citizens. And when we don't care about ultimate questions we are really at our worst. Even no faith is better than lazy faith.

The Resounding Silence on West Papua

The Resounding Silence on West Papua

Susan Connelly

sosj.org.au | 11 October 2017

‘The face of the suffering West Papuans is hidden, as is Christ’s. The response to their petition is a slap in their face. But we can refuse to be silent.’

Last month, a petition of 1.8 million signatures was presented to the UN Decolonisation Committee by the West Papuan independence movement. The Australian media has barely reported it, the UN Decolonisation Committee declined to receive it and the Indonesian government called it a ‘hoax’. And, in a recent oration entitled ‘Can Democracy Deliver?’, former Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Marty M. Natalegawa fails to mention Papua. See the full text of the oration here, and a comment in response by Bruce Wearne.

Turnbull misses opportunity to progress Aboriginal rights

Turnbull misses opportunity to progress Aboriginal rights

Anastasia Moore

eurekastreet.com.au | 1 November 2017

Why go to the trouble of gathering all the great minds to discuss the issue of recognition, giving hope to many people, only to determine the idea 'too ambitious'? What right does Turnbull have to predetermine what Australians will or won't accept? This question could be put to Australians in a referendum.

Among the gods of the Melbourne Cup

Among the gods of the Melbourne Cup

Andrew Hamilton

eurekastreet.com.au | 2 November 2017

More recently, Mammon has dominated the Melbourne Cup. It has been targeted by wealthy international owners and stables who buy up the most likely stayers in order to buy the result. It has also been used by corporations to fuel their engines of misery that suck money and life out of many Australian families.