Not seen, Not heard. Not smelt, Not felt. Unspoken. Undone. Unthought. Not known. Not loved. Not no thing. Beloved.

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Electing the President

Electing the President

There is something fascinating about the “contest” which elects the President of the United States. The 2016 election is no exception. Candidates who weren’t imagined before the election year have come to the fore and with them the discourse and the “contest” has been thrown open. Issues of gender are right on the surface. And the fact that a women…

Agora movie – seeing ourselves through an alien past


The movie Agora (director Alejandro Amenábar) is not history, but perhaps, it rises to allegory. It is well worth watching, despite its ‘interpretative’ approach to history. It is a movie which captures deeper truths about human relationships and its fictionalized past helps us understand the challenges of our conflicted present. The struggles of Agora’s characters are enriched by Dario Marianelli’s…

Universal Declaration of Human Rights 2048

udhr cc attrib

Will the future of human rights look like this? After a century of unimaginable suffering in which hundreds of millions of human beings lived in slave like conditions; wars killed millions; millions more fled – many condemned for generations to squalid “refugee” camps; millions starved; where national democracies collapsed under the weight of sectional interests and armed conflict and the…

Australia’s refugee intake at historic lows


While the world is in crisis, Australia’s refugee intake stands at historic lows. In terms of per capita intake, and in terms of Australia’s overall migration program, Australia’s humanitarian program has declined systematically since the 1970’s.  In absolute terms, Australia’s current humanitarian program compares poorly with Australia’s response during other points of global crisis – for example during the Vietnam…

Racism – a daily reality

racism it stops with me

Racism is an almost daily news item. For many, its a terrible lived problem. But, many have trouble believing it exists, except perhaps at the the margins of society. If we don’t see the obvious symbols of racism: arm bands, hate flags, white hoods, we may think the problem is no longer there.  We have a curious situation where “racism”…

Patriotic Cosmopolitanism

patriotic cosmopolitanism - astronaut with international flag of planet earth designed by Oskar Pernefeldt

Can we, at the same time, love our family, our neighbours, our country, our people, humanity and the world we live in? Surely we can. And to love any of them, properly considered, is to love them all: for their welfare is intimately interwoven.  There is no contradiction in speaking of patriotic cosmopolitanism – understood in this sense.  The dichotomy…

Parliamentary Committee: Law to Strip Citizenship Lacks Proper Justification

Senate Chamber

The Human Rights Committee of the Australian Parliament has expressed serious concerns about human rights compatability of the proposed law to strip citizenship from dual nationals suspected of involvement in terrorism. (Australian Citizenship Amendment (Allegiance to Australia) Bill 2015) The Committee, which has the job of making sure Australian laws are human rights complaint, made its findings in its latest…