• Climate - Politics

    I don’t believe in Gaia theory

    … the notion that the biosphere, or even the earth, as a whole can be considered as a single great organism. Some versions of it even credit Gaia with a sort of consciousness. But one could be forgiven for seeing Hurricane Sandy, aka Sandy-Athena, aka Frankenstorm, as a note: Um,…

  • Politics

    A Balanced Case For Obama

    An editorial from the Denver Post, explaining their decision to endorse Barrack Obama for president: http://www.denverpost.com/opinion/ci_21804862/editorial-barack-obama-president I think it provides a good balanced overview of both men and both campaigns. I’d actually be even tougher on Obama than they are – Guantanamo Bay is still open, the government and agencies…

  • Politics - Teaching

    Giving a Gonski 2

    I’ve been promising a more detailed response to Monday’s announcements from the government in response to the Gonski report into school funding – so I guess this is that. One of the first points is that the government hasn’t, as yet, really responded to the Gonski report… rather, it has…

  • Politics - Science Stuff

    Science and Politics

    It’s not *necessarily* the case that those on the right politically have to be anti-science: indeed, conservatism has typically supported science. This is a very disturbing trend. http://www.salon.com/2011/10/15/the_republican_war_on_science_is_un_american/

  • Politics - Religion

    On With The Body Count

    It’s something that comes up fairly often in discussions of religion, for all sides. Atheists point to the death toll and suffering in the Crusades and the Inquisition. Christians point to the deaths in Russia and China and ascribe them to atheism. Personally I don’t find it a particularly interesting…

  • Climate - Politics - Religion

    Dammit

    Conservative Christians tend not to believe in climate change. But they do believe extreme climate events are Signs of the End. Cannot freakin’ win with these people. THE WORLD can’t win. REALITY can’t win.

  • Politics - Teaching

    Mercantilisation and Education

    Businesses used to have (at least) two purposes – making the best possible ‘product’, and making money. Over the past perhaps 50 years we have seen a shift in the direction of making the cheapest, crappiest possible product and maximising shareholder return (money). This is not inevitable, it’s just an…

  • Politics - Religion

    Who would Jesus intern?

    Tony Abbott, Australia’s opposition leader, opined in a TV interview last night that Jesus would turn back asylum seekers: http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/even-jesus-christ-would-not-accept-every-asylum-seeker-says-tony-abbott/comments-e6freon6-1225850156617 Maybe Tony’s Bible is missing Matthew 25…

  • Politics - Religion

    God doesn’t really hate poor people

    I’d been wondering a bit, after Haiti and Chile. I mean, some of his self-proclaimed servants seemed to think so… But this article does a nice job of explaining why a significantly smaller quake than the one in Chile killed a lot more people in Haiti: http://www.cnn.com/2010/OPINION/02/28/stark.chile.quake.haiti/index.html?hpt=C2

  • Politics

    Tea Partiers and Republicans – shh, don’t tell them their views are diametrically opposed

    Glenn Greenwald, as usual, is penetrating through the spin to the heart of the matter: http://www.salon.com/news/tea_parties/index.html?story=/opinion/greenwald/2010/02/21/libertarianism …that GOP limited government rhetoric is simply never matched by that Party’s conduct, especially when they wield power. The very idea that a political party dominated by neocons, warmongers, surveillance fetishists, and privacy-hating social…

  • Politics

    Is there a way back?

    Listening to a very interesting program on Radio National the other day. We’re currently going through a series of scandals in Australian politics because the government rushed into place a policy to insulate millions of houses in a short period. Turned out a lot of the operators were shonky, using…

  • Politics

    One more must-read post from Glenn Greenwald

    This time on why what counts as ‘journalistic objectivity’ is apparently quite different for the New York Times and for Al Jazeera – especially when describing US conduct: http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/index.html?story=/opinion/greenwald/2009/12/23/objectivity

  • Musings - Politics

    UnAustralian

    One of the local newspapers included in today’s edition free small Australian flags to be flown from cars, so there were lots of them about on the weekend. Lots of flags everywhere else as well, including on clothes and even bikinis. I had a bit of a rant-ette to the…