Compassion

Tony Abbott’s ‘compassionate parents’ comments irritate and are presumptive

Lifti 1a

Not having children doesn’t make you less compassionate The Age - Terry Barnes In his wider than expected ministerial reshuffle, Prime Minister Tony Abbott promoted his tough-as-an-old boot Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Scott Morrison, into an expanded portfolio of Social Services. Even before Abbott’s press conference announcing the changes began, Twitter pundits were joking that Morrison’s mantra would change ... Read More »

Scott Morrison’s calculated cruelty is his legacy

Morrison happy 1a LLLL

He proved to be a callous Immigration Minister, yet he is given another portfolio that requires compassion. The Canberra Times – Julian Burnside Scott Morrison’s performance as immigration minister will be assessed differently, depending on where you stand. For those who think boat people are criminals who should be locked up, his time in the immigration portfolio has been hailed ... Read More »

Detainees: the injustice remains, the vigil goes on

IDAS 1a

The Bladin and Wickham Point detention facilities are 35 kilometres south of Darwin. Every Sunday afternoon, 74-year-old Richard Davis conducts a lone vigil outside the centres. A tall, slim man, with a straggly white beard, he perches on a stool beside his white four-wheel drive. In front of him rests a knee-high placard, captioned: “Until we are all free, none ... Read More »

A Day of Great Moral Failure

UCA 1a

 The Uniting Church in Australia has expressed its dismay at changes passed to the Migration and Maritime Powers Acts which will cause greater suffering for those vulnerable people seeking refuge in Australia. “Today is a day of great moral failure for Australia,” said Uniting Church President, Rev. Prof. Andrew Dutney, in response to the legislation which passed the Senate in ... Read More »

Julian Burnside: Sydney Peace Prize Lecture

Julian Burnside in the street 1a LLLL

Law and Ethics ABC Big Ideas Sydney Peace Foundation He says he “grew up breathing liberal air.” He was born in the year Robert Menzies came to power and Menzies was still there when he finished school in Melbourne. Entire Talk watch now listen to audio [29.33 Mb] download video (mp4) [5.68 Mb] He’s Julian Burnside, barrister, human rights advocate, ... Read More »

Atul Gawande: The Smiling Angel of a Happy Death

atul-gawande

It is said that victorious Roman generals, on city parades following battlefield triumphs, would be followed by a servant. “Memento Mori,” the servant would say over and over. “Remember that you have to die.” Later, still-life paintings were punctuated by symbols of the finite – rotting fruit, wilting flowers, bubbles – as reminders of life’s transience. Early self-help books, with ... Read More »

Medicine, morality and magnanimity in death

AutoEutha 1a

In May this year, in these pages, Peter Short wrote a forthright opinion piece declaring he was dying of oesophageal cancer, had a supply of Nembutal and would end his own life at a time of his choosing. In January this year, his doctors gave him six months to live. He is still very much alive and is campaigning vigorously ... Read More »