Australia

Green Left Weekly’s Chris Williams spoke to Graham Larcombe, secretary of Wollongong Against Corruption, about the process underway in Wollongong to develop a new, democratic vision of local democracy.

The federal government’s climate adviser, Professor Ross Garnaut, told the National Press Club on September 5 that while climate change is “diabolical”, “intractable” and “daunting”, Australia is a “special case” and cannot be expected to cut greenhouse gas emissions to the same extent as other “wealthy nations”.

The prescription of oral contraceptives to a 14-year-old without her parents’ knowledge has triggered a debate over adolescents’ access to confidential health care. The student of Bellarine Secondary College in Victoria was taken by a school nurse to a doctor, who prescribed the medication.

Young people “are the present … whether we have a future or not depends on what we as young people do or don’t do”, proclaimed student leader and minister for the presidency, Hector Rodriguez, speaking on August 22 to thousands of members of the youth organisation of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela, the PSUV Youth (JPSUV).

On August 29, Dr Mohamed Haneef was officially declared“no longer a person of interest” — after more than 12 months of “investigations” that included detention without charge, the then-federal Howard government revoking his visa, and continual insinuations of “support for terrorism”, at a total cost of over $8.5 million.

David Spratt co-wrote Climate Code Red: The Case for Emergency Action with Philip Sutton. The book has been recently published and a review can be read in GLW #764. Spratt spoke to Green Left Weekly’s Ben Courtice about the need to move beyond “business as usual” immediately if we’re to avert climate catastrophe.

On August 27, outside a "Defence White Paper community consultation", Stop the War Coalition held a protest. Inside, peace activists made up about 40% of an audience of about 100.

The Business Council of Australia (BCA) — representative of the 100 largest companies in Australia — has threatened that its members will be “forced” to relocate offshore if the federal government’s Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) is implemented.

The National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) has finalised the first agreement in a new round of collective bargaining in universities. The University of Ballarat agreement gives a 10.9% pay increase over 15 months.

Educational feudalism

Julia Gillard sure wants to take the neoliberal stick to public education and parents.

Firstly, impoverished parents who find it difficult to send their children to school every day will become even more impoverished by

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