Opinion

Just making fathers take parental leave won’t solve much

Greater workplace gender balance needs broader approach Maeve McElwee The Irish Times Achieving greater gender balance and equality in the workforce has been a long-standing policy and economic priority. The proposed Parental Leave and Benefit Bill announced last week is a small step in the right direction in this regard. The measure, which would introduce two additional weeks of parental leave benefit for both parents within the first 52 weeks, seeks to begin a rebalancing of the share of responsibility ... Read More »

Caruana Galizia murder: Fighting for justice for my murdered mother

Once every few months I have to sit in a room with the person investigating my mother’s murder. Our family first encountered him six years ago, when he came to our home to arrest her. By Matthew Caruana Galizia World Press Freedom Day BBC My mother had published a satirical blog post about a candidate for Maltese prime minister on election day and one of his supporters filed a police report. So, the detective was sent to our family home ... Read More »

End to Aids in sight as huge study finds drugs stop HIV transmission

Paper says risk between male partners is zero if virus fully suppressed by antiretrovirals Sarah Boseley and Hannah Devlin The Guardian An end to the Aids epidemic could be in sight after a landmark study found men whose HIV infection was fully suppressed by antiretroviral drugs had no chance of infecting their partner. The success of the medicine means that if everyone with HIV were fully treated, there would be no further infections. Among nearly 1,000 male couples across Europe ... Read More »

Just making fathers take parental leave won’t solve much

Greater workplace gender balance needs broader approach Maeve McElwee The Irish Times Achieving greater gender balance and equality in the workforce has been a long-standing policy and economic priority. The proposed Parental Leave and Benefit Bill announced last week is a small step in the… The measure, which would introduce two additional weeks of parental leave benefit for both parents within the first 52 weeks, seeks to begin a rebalancing of the share of responsibility placed on women for the… ... Read More »

Federal election 2019: Australian Electoral Commission needs real powers to fight false claims

The Australian Electoral Commission says it is very keen to ensure that you are not misled during the current campaign to select our next Federal government. Paul Murray The West Australian So it is flooding social media with messages telling electors to be vigilant about misinformation as part of its Stop and Consider initiative. The problem is the commission also says it has absolutely no power to be a campaign umpire. “Under the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, there are no ... Read More »

Majority of voters want action on women’s issues, new polling shows

A majority of voters believe childcare should be a tax deductible expense, that many of our politicians are sexist, that women should comprise at least half of parliamentarians, and that the… Jacqueline Maley Brisbane Times The survey of 1065 voters, split almost evenly between men and women, commissioned by independent lobby group WomenVote and conducted by YouGov Galaxy, shows large… Seventy-one per cent believe the government should be doing more to address the gender pay gap, and 75 per cent ... Read More »

Why Europe Needs a Security Council

In the new world of great power competition, European cooperation is vital for survival.  That’s why a new institution is needed. Ulrich Speck Berlin Policy Journal The end of any hope for liberal convergence; the tougher tone in international affairs; the United States’ focus on competition with China, and also with Russia; Donald Trump’s ruthlessness toward… Europeans increasingly realize that to leave defense and strategic leadership largely to the US and to focus mainly on domestic affairs isn’t going to ... Read More »

“There’s Always Hope!”

Since 1989, the West has become stuck in the “politics of eternity,” failing to think either about the past or the future, argues historian TIMOTHY SNYDER in an interview. Timothy Snyder Berlin Policy Journal It’s high time this changed. Is this the end of the West as we know it? It might be. But it’s up to us. Over the last 25 years or so, we have contributed to the Western decline because we have failed to actually think about ... Read More »

No Ever Closer Union

Pro-Europeans have long avoided a debate on the end goal of EU integration. Heinrich August Winkler Berlin Policy Journal It’s time for honesty: ever closer cooperation between member states is the only realistic way forward. In the run-up to the European Parliament elections, none of the German political parties has shown quite as much ambition as the Free Democratic Party (FDP). In its election program, adopted at the end of January 2019, the pro-business liberal party calls for the convening ... Read More »

Global inequality is 25% higher than it would have been in a climate-stable world

Those least responsible for global warming will suffer the most. Poorer countries – those that have contributed far less to climate change – tend to be situated in warmer regions, where additional warming causes the most devastation. Nicholas Beuret The Conversation Extreme weather events such as Syria’s prolonged drought, South Asia’s catastrophic monsoon floods, and Cyclone Idai in South-East Africa, the third deadliest cyclone on record, are becoming more likely and more severe. These events are disproportionately bringing death, displacement, ... Read More »

Democracy: ‘Inclusion is the future – not exclusion’

The rise of right-wing populism is being fuelled by polarisation in society that we must address without resorting to the claim of moral superiority, or protest voters will become the… Annette Ekin Horizon Horizon spoke to Prof. Merkel about the challenges for democracy, who is being left behind and how he sees right-wing populists gaining at the European elections starting 23 May. These are uncertain, tough times for democracy – the decline of voter turnout, the rise of right-wing populist ... Read More »

It’s time political parties started taking data protection seriously

When the major political parties were spared the tedium of complying with the Privacy Act in 2000, the then-Howard government argued their exemption would enhance political communication and free up the democratic process. David Wroe Brisbane Times It was a controversial enough view at the time, but it has become almost ludicrously counterproductive in the years since. Technology in 2019 means malign actors can steal data and then use it to manipulate elections. That includes data on individual voters. So ... Read More »

Message to the EU: you have the chance to stop fuelling devastation in the Amazon

The effects of European consumption are being felt in Brazil, driving disastrous deforestation and violence. Authors: The Conversation But the destruction can end if the European Union demands higher environmental standards on Brazilian goods. Hundreds of scientists and Indigenous leaders agree: the time to act is now, before it’s too late. In an open letter published today in the journal Science, more than 600 scientists from every country in the European Union (EU) and 300 Brazilian Indigenous groups asked the ... Read More »

Clouds gather over Turkey’s nuclear ambitions

In early December 2018, five years after Turkey and Japan signed a bilateral agreement concerning the construction of four nuclear reactors in the city of Sinop on the Black Sea, the project looks like it might be shelved. Pantelis Oikonomou ekathimerini According to foreign news agencies, the Japanese-French consortium is set to abandon the project. The consortium says that delays in launching construction have more than doubled the estimated costs. Tougher international safety measures that came into force following the ... Read More »

Anzacs witnessed the Armenian genocide – that shouldn’t be forgotten in our mythologising

We have a chance to build a more honest and genuine tradition James Robins The Guardians ”It is universally admitted,” the great psychologist Sigmund Freud wrote as the 19th century turned to the 20th, “that in the origins of the traditions and folklore of a people, care must be taken to eliminate from the memory such a motive as would be painful to the national feeling.” In Australia and New Zealand, the most popular tradition of all is Anzac Day, ... Read More »

Brian Monteith: Climate change isn’t the biggest threat to life on Earth

Policies advocated by uber-green protesters would imperil recent improvements in global living conditions, writes Brian Monteith. Brian Monteith The Scotsman Is the human race about to become extinct in the next 50 years? Really? Last Wednesday London, Edinburgh and other UK cities found some of their city centre roads closed and traffic brought to a halt by demonstrators. The intention was to alert us to an escalating peril where the combination of a growing world population, finite resources and a ... Read More »