Analysis

On March 10 and 11, the Sydney Morning Herald ran an expose of “white flight” from public schools across NSW. Using a previously confidential survey of 163 high school principals in NSW, it described the phenomenon where increasing numbers of white-European parents were removing their children from disadvantaged public schools in regional and remote areas and areas in Sydney’s south-west and placing them in private schools or in selective state schools in more distant suburbs.
Ever heard of Walter Lindrum? No. How about Arthur Streeton or Nelly Melba? Don’t ring a bell either? Well, that’s OK as long as you were just playing a game of trivia or filling in a crossword. Unfortunately, not knowing the answer to these or similarly trivial questions can have a more serious outcome nowadays — it might actually jeopardise an immigrant’s chances of becoming an Australian citizen.
Carbon trading and offsets distract attention from the wider, systemic changes and collective political action that needs to be taken in the transition to a low-carbon economy. Promoting more effective and empowering approaches to climate change involves moving away from the blinkered reductionism of free-market dogma, the false economy of supposed quick fixes and the short-term self-interest of big business.
“For a council that won’t cost us the Earth”, was the slogan for the campaign for the Brisbane City Council by David White, a member of the Socialist Alliance. The council held elections on March 15.
The profit-driven, multi-billion-dollar treatment of depression has been exposed as little less than a fraud. The selective publication of trials has meant that large corporations have been able to make misleading claims for their drugs.
In the most recent edition of Green Left Weekly (GLW #742, links to all contributions in debate so far are below), well-known progressive anti-imperialist activist, Professor Stephen Zunes, has proclaimed that I am a liar.
Former Democrat senator Sid Spindler died at his home on March 1, aged 75. He had dedicated his life to opposing injustice and campaigning for a more socially just world, even when this might have been unpopular. He was always prepared to stand up and be counted on social justice issues.
Well, so much for our new government taking an even-handed position on Israel/Palestine.
“We’re approaching the future with some confidence notwithstanding the obstacles that are put in our path by institutions like the ABCC [Australian Building and Construction Commission]”, Dave Noonan, national secretary of the construction division of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union told Green Left Weekly. Noonan spoke to GLW after the CFMEU national conference, held in Sydney from February 18-22.
As the quarantining of Indigenous welfare payments (50% of individual welfare benefits being received as gift cards for certain shops) rolls out across the Northern Territory, its alleged benefits need to be weighed against the possible cultural and economic consequences.

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