Society

Seafood industry calls for Senate inquiry into seismic testing

Members of the Australian seafood industry are persisting in their calls for an inquiry into seismic testing, despite the Senate having twice rejected the idea. ABC West Coast SA By Samantha Jonscher Seismic surveys, which are used to search for undersea oil and gas deposits, involve firing intense soundwaves into the ocean floor, which fishers worry could disrupt the behaviour of marine life. Southern Bluefin Tuna Industry Association President Brian Jeffriess said not enough is known about the impacts of ... Read More »

Justin Trudeau Conflating BDS With Anti-Semitism Is Dangerous

As Canadian scholars, we urge Trudeau to retract his wrong-spirited comments that demonize the work students, community members and activists have done. Sarah Ghabrial and Elena Razlogova HuffPost On November 7, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a well overdue apologyon behalf of all Canadians for the rejection of the MS St. Louis in 1939. Canada’s refusal to allow more than 900 refugees, mostly German Jews fleeing Nazism, to disembark at Halifax was only one part of a systematic government effort to ... Read More »

Bibliotherapy: how reading and writing have been healing trauma since World War I

Bibliotherapy – the idea that reading can have a beneficial effect on mental health – has undergone a resurgence. Authors: The Conversation There is mounting clinical evidence that reading can, for example, help people overcome loneliness and social exclusion. One scheme in Coventry allows health professionals to prescribe books to their patients from a list drawn up by mental health experts. Even as public library services across Britain are cut back, the healing potential of books is increasingly recognised. The ... Read More »

The Death of Democracy in Bangladesh

Democracy in Bangladesh hangs in the balance, and an upcoming election will mark a critical inflection point. Atif Ahmad, Michael Kugelman Image: Reuters The National Interest It’s not often that armed motorcyclists attack a U.S. ambassador, but that’s exactly what happened to Marcia Bernicat, Washington’s envoy in Bangladesh, one night this past summer. Bernicat was leaving a dinner party in Dhaka on August 4 when men on motorbikes chased her vehicle and threw bricks. No perpetrators were named in the ... Read More »

Why covering the environment is one of the most dangerous beats in journalism

From the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Kashoggi by Saudi agents to President Trump’s clashes with the White House press corps, attacks on reporters are in the news. Eric Freedman The Conversation This problem extends far beyond the politics beat, and world leaders aren’t the only threats. At Michigan State University’s Knight Center for Environmental Journalism, we train students and professional journalists to report on what we view as the world’s most important beat. One hard fact is that those ... Read More »

Friday essay: turning up the level of civilisation

In October 2005 Stephen Colbert was just starting his eponymous show. It is somewhat chilling to realise that this was when he came up with the word truthiness: it seems so now. Julianne Schultz The Conversation It has taken a while to reach maturity and morphed into the even more menacing trumpiness. Truthiness captures the slippery world inhabited by those unencumbered by books, or facts, context or complexity – for those who just know with their heart rather than their ... Read More »

Theresa May stares down Brexit turmoil, vowing to see her deal through

London (CNN) – An embattled Theresa May vowed to fight on as UK Prime Minister Thursday in the face of intense opposition to her troubled Brexit deal, facing down a wave of resignations and… By Laura Smith-Spark and Eliza Mackintosh, CNN In a defiant statement at 10 Downing Street, May said her Brexit deal — which has attracted intense criticism from all sides — was in the national interest and made it clear that she had no… “I believe with every ... Read More »

A county in Idaho offered Spanish-language ballots for the first time and here’s what happened

On the morning of Election Day, the top trending search on Google was “donde votar,” which means “where to vote” in Spanish. Gabe Osterhout The Conversation Voter access to the polls was a major issue during the 2018 midterm elections in the U.S. Charges of voter suppression were made in in Georgia and North Dakota. Critics of new voting rules claimed they disenfranchised African-Americans and Native Americans. While those problems were extensively covered by the press, less attention was paid ... Read More »

Mike Pence issues rebuke to Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi over ‘persecution’ of Rohingya Muslims

US Vice President Mike Pence has issued his strongest condemnation yet of Myanmar’s treatment of Rohingya Muslims warning leader Aung San Suu Kyi that “persecution” by her country’s army was “without excuse.” Sophie Williams Evening Standard He met with the Myanmar leader on Wednesday on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific summit in Singapore. While sitting next to the Myanmar leader, he said: “The violence and persecution by military and vigilantes that resulted in driving 700,000 Rohingya to Bangladesh is without ... Read More »

Refugee comics: personal stories of forced migration illustrated in a powerful new way

When a work of art called the “The List” was installed in July 2018 at the Liverpool Biennial in the UK, it contained the names of 34,361 refugees and migrants who died crossing the borders of… Emma Parker The Conversation By September, it had been defaced with the words “invaders not refugees”. While local officials condemned the culprits as “fascist thugs”, rhetoric which portrays refugees as nameless “invaders” has been used repeatedly by European leaders and politicians in recent years. ... Read More »

Brexit deal EXPLAINED: What we know about Theresa May’s 500-page Brexit deal

THERESA May has completed a draft Brexit deal with the European Union and now must seek the approval of her Cabinet at a crunch meeting in Westminster this afternoon. Joe Barnes Express The Prime Minister’s latest proposals have already become deeply controversial with rumours of more ministerial resignations and Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party ready to vote down the… But in what is considered largely as a victory by Brussels and Downing Street, Mrs May has secured a UK-wide Irish ... Read More »

Iran executes two men accused of illicit gold coin trading

Iran executed two men accused of economic crimes on Nov. 14, part of an effort to stem financial misconduct as the country faces an economic crisis and new U.S. sanctions targeting its oil sector. GENEVA – Reuters Hurriyet One of the two executed men was Vahid Mazloumin, dubbed the “sultan of coins” by media, a trader accused of manipulating the currency market, according to Mizan, the news site of the Iranian judiciary. Mazloumin was allegedly caught with two tons of gold coins, according ... Read More »

Australia becoming more corrupt, warns former judge

Australia is becoming more corrupt because successive federal governments have failed to create an effective national anti-corruption body similar to the NSW Independent Commission against Corruption, a… Nick O’Malley The Sydney Morning Herald Writing in support of a national anti-corruption body, David Harper, a former Court of Appeals justice at the Supreme Court of Victoria, noted that in 2012 Australia ranked seventh in… “The lack of a federal anti-corruption agency remains a reason why we have never come close to ... Read More »

Rohingya gripped by fear as repatriation to Myanmar begins

As a bilateral agreement to return Rohingya refugees to Myanmar is set to take effect, there have been unconfirmed reports of refugees disappearing from camps to avoid a forced return to the… Wesley Rahn DW In October, a UN fact-finding mission said that that an“ongoing genocide” is still taking place in Myanmar against the Rohingya, a Muslim minority group living in the country’s western Rakhine… On November 15, despite warnings from the UN and aid organizations, the final phase of a ... Read More »

Brexit: UK and EU ‘agree text’ of draft withdrawal agreement

UK and EU officials have agreed the draft text of a Brexit agreement after months of negotiations. BBC A cabinet source told the BBC that the document has been agreed at a technical level by officials from both sides after intensive discussions this week. A special cabinet meeting will be held at 14:00 GMT on Wednesday as Theresa May seeks ministers’ backing. The PM has been meeting ministers in Downing Street for one-to-one talks on the draft agreement. BBC political ... Read More »

Trolley man Michael Rogers gets a new phone and an epic feed as charity money rolls in

Australia’s terrorist-fighting superhero is slowly beginning to turn his life around with an enormous sum of cash. Here’s how he plans to spend it. Ben Graham news.com.au It has been a rollercoaster week for Melbourne’s latest superhero Michael Rogers to say the least. It was just five weeks ago that the homeless legend — who has come to be dubbed as the trolley man for his jihadi-fighting credentials — was released from jail for stealing a bike. Now he is ... Read More »