Features

Bill Shorten calls for suspension of live sheep exports

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Labor leader says that ‘only a monster’ would think live export industry should be unchanged Paul Karp and Calla Wahlquist The Guardian Bill Shorten has demanded a suspension of shipments of live sheep during the northern summer and blasted the Coalition for failing to update standards to protect sheep. On Thursday the bipartisan consensus to wait for a series of reviews before intervening in the industry began to fracture, with the Liberal MP Sussan Ley proposing a private member’s bill for a ... Read More »

Rape as a political tool in India

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The brutal rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl from a Muslim minority group is not just about gender violence. Mariya Salim AlJazeera The gruesome rape and murder of an eight-year-old Muslim girl in Kathua district of Indian-administered Kashmir is a chilling reminder of how sexual assault is used as a tool to instil fear among those belonging to the… There have been many Indians, especially on social media platforms, who have repeatedly claimed that one must look at this ... Read More »

Judge rules against Trump administration in teen pregnancy prevention case

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A federal judge in D.C. ruled Thursday that the Trump administration’s cuts to the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program were unlawful. The Hill Last summer, the administration notified 81 organizations that their five-year grants through the program would end in 2018, rather than in 2020, prompting multiple lawsuits. Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson ruled in one of those cases Thursday, ordering the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to accept and… “We are disappointed… Judge rules against… Read More »

What’s behind the big commodities rally, and why it could be just getting started

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After years of languishing under low market volatility and weak global growth, commodities are on the move higher. One index is at a multi-year peak as prices rise in energy, gold and base metals. Traders in the space see the rally continuing in the face of a trade war threat and as the market gets more comfortable with the global economic growth theme. Threats of a trade war and continued signs of global growth are combining to create myriad opportunities ... Read More »

Bill Jamieson: Here’s how the world is leaving Scotland behind

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Economic optimism about the global economy doesn’t extend to Scotland, writes Bill Jamieson. The Scotsman Few forecasts should have more cheered Scottish Government ministers in their efforts to boost Scotland’s trade and profile overseas than the upbeat International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecast for the world economy this week. It predicts that 2018 will be the strongest year for global growth since 2011, hitting 3.8 per cent. That’s an encouraging backdrop for Scotland’s exporters. And the IMF has even made a… ... Read More »

Australia should tax and regulate cannabis, not prohibit it

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The decision to ban cannabis was an accident of history. There was no careful root and branch review of the evidence. Alex Wodak ABC Instead, Australia was represented at a League of Nations meeting in Geneva in 1925 where delegates from several countries decried the dangers of cannabis. As Robert Kendell outlines in his book Cannabis Condemned: “A claim by the Egyptian delegation that [cannabis] was as dangerous as opium, and should therefore be subject to the same international controls, ... Read More »

Scared state: Crime looms large but we don’t know who’s best to fix it

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Voters across Victoria say crime is the biggest issue facing the state, with a long-running survey finding it is a far greater concern than healthcare, transport, cost of living, education or housing. Adam Carey & Craig Butt The Age Concern about crime has surged in the past two years and is much greater now than it was when Labor came to power in November 2014. The results of April’s Ipsos Issues Monitor suggest that crime policy will do more to ... Read More »

Canberra public servant’s sacking over asylum seeker policy tweets found to be ‘unlawful’

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A Canberra public servant sacked for expressing her views on asylum seeker policy, has won her case for compensation after the Administrative Appeals Tribunal of Australia found she was unlawfully dismissed. Elise Pianegonda ABC In September 2013, Michaela Banerji was fired from the Federal Department of Immigration after it was revealed she had been using the anonymous Twitter name @LaLegale to criticise the then-government, the minister and department policies — particularly over the handling of refugees. In one tweet Ms ... Read More »

Will a Robot Take My Job?

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A restructuring of the global economy fueled by changes in technological capabilities is underway. These changes will result in a complementary restructuring of entire sectors of the global economy. Daniel M. Gerstein The National Interest A REVOLUTION is occurring at the intersection of technology and labor. Change will be uneven across sectors and across the globe. But it will come. Technological advances in artificial intelligence (AI), autonomy and robotics will fuel these changes, aided by the synergistic effects of the ... Read More »

Iran to replace US dollar with euro in financial reports

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Amid currency crisis, switch is aimed at circumvent restrictions on accessing US dollar and prevent market instability. Saeed Jalili AlJazeera Tehran, Iran – The government of Iran has announced plans to replace the US dollar with the euro in official financial reporting, according to state-run media. The move on Wednesday is seen as part of efforts to circumvent restrictions on accessing the US currency amid tensions with Washington, as well as prevent market instability generated due to fluctuations in the value of Iranian rial against the dollar. ... Read More »

Richard Flanagan: ‘Our politics is a dreadful black comedy’ – press club speech in full

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Indigenous Australia, Anzac Day, the descent of democracy – in a National Press Club address Flanagan examines a divided Australia which he says can be free only if it faces up to its past Richard Flanagan The Guardian I told a friend the other day I was to be speaking here in Canberra today and she told me a joke. A man is doubled over at the front of Parliament House throwing up. A stranger comes up and puts an arm ... Read More »

Cuba nominates Castro replacement Miguel Díaz-Canel

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Cuba’s parliament has picked Miguel Díaz-Canel as the sole candidate to succeed Raúl Castro, 86, bringing the family’s decades-long rule to an end. BBC Mr Castro took over as president from his ailing brother Fidel in 2006. The National Assembly, the country’s legislative body, will vote on the nomination but Mr Díaz-Canel is almost certain to be confirmed. Mr Castro is expected to remain a powerful influence in the communist state even after he steps down. He will stay on ... Read More »

Erdoğan seeks to expand Turkey’s influence in the Middle East through diplomacy – and force

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On our third trip to Istanbul, my wife and I visited the 19th century Dolmabahce Palace, once the administrative centre of the Ottoman Empire. Nicolai Due-Gundersen The Conversation As we toured the 285-room palace my wife was struck with not just how well preserved it was, but that it was one of at least five palaces from the Ottoman era in Turkey that are now museums open to the public. This is telling, because it is not something found across ... Read More »

Divisions in EU becoming like a ’civil war,’ France’s Macron warns

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French President Emmanuel Macron warned on April 17 that divisions between democracy and authoritarianism in Europe were becoming like a “civil war”. STRASBOURG – Agence France-Presse Hurriyet In a speech to the European Parliament in Strasbourg that set out his vision of a reformed EU, Macron called on the bloc to resist the siren song of populism. The young French leader’s call to arms comes after eurosceptic populists won elections in Hungary and Italy, and as Brussels confronts Poland’s right-wing ... Read More »

France’s autism problem – and its roots in psychoanalysis

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France has a problem with autism. The country’s highest administrative court estimates that there are 700,000 autistic people in France. Richard Bates The Conversation However, only 75,000 are diagnosed. Autistic children have historically been diagnosed later in France than in neighbouring countries. They have often been excluded from mainstream education and lacked access to support services and extracurricular activities. Many French autists are confined to day hospitals and live-in institutions, isolated from the community and frequently unable to communicate through ... Read More »

Libyan Refugee Crisis—EU Must Take Responsibility and Alter Its Migrant Policy

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The European Union’s relief efforts must not contribute to the subjugation of the asylum seekers and deny them their basic human and legal rights. Sajid Farid Shampoo The National Interest The world seems to be slowly coming to terms with the Libyan refugee crisis. Despite the loss of over five hundred migrant lives in the Mediterranean sea in the first three months of 2018, the issue has failed to occupy the media spaces in the way it had in the ... Read More »