Economy

In the lead-up to the federal election, talk of balancing the budget, jobs and growth are centre. Amid rising unemployment and job insecurity, single parents continue to face both a job market unforgiving of parenting responsibilities and parenting payments that have been consistently attacked and eroded — framed by the false narrative of providing incentives to return to work and finding necessary budget savings.
Greek Islanders who have been on the frontline of the refugee crisis have been nominated for the Nobel peace prize. Some 230 academics from the universities of Oxford, Princeton, Harvard, Cornell and Copenhagen nominated the people of Lesbos, Kos, Chíos, Samos, Rhodes and Leros for the prize. Only individuals or organisations are eligible to win the prize so 16 volunteer networks on the islands who organised to help the refugees are the official nominees.
About 800 people gathered at the Irish Memorial at the Waverley Cemetery in Sydney's eastern suburbs on March 27 over two events to commemorate the centenary of Ireland’s 1916 Easter Rising against British rule. The first commemoration was organised by the James Connolly Association (JCA) and the second by the Irish National Association (INA), which maintains the cemetery’s famous memorial to martyrs of Ireland’s freedom struggle.
Across the US young people are pouring into the polling booths. The contest is not the Presidential election — that is still some months away. Instead they are lining up to vote in the primaries for the Democratic Party. In particular they are turning up to vote for an old Jewish radical from New York.
Sanders at a campaign rally in San Diego, March 22. Democrat voters in Utah, Idaho, and Arizona have turned out in unprecedented numbers or March 22 caucuses, with self-proclaimed socialist Bernie Sanders winning big in Utah and Idaho, TeleSUR English said that day.
I have been filming in the Marshall Islands, which lie north of Australia, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Whenever I tell people where I have been, they ask, "Where is that?" If I offer a clue by referring to "Bikini", they say, "You mean the swimsuit." Few seem aware that the bikini swimsuit was named to celebrate the nuclear explosions that destroyed Bikini island. Sixty-six nuclear devices were exploded by the United States in the Marshall Islands between 1946 and 1958 -- the equivalent of 1.6 Hiroshima bombs every day for twelve years.
Self-proclaimed socialist Senator Bernie Sanders has lit up the US presidential race by drawing on enthusiastic support of largely young people in a campaign calling for a “political revolution” against Wall Street. Defying talking heads who long ago gave the Democratic nomination to the corporate-backed Hillary Clinton, Sanders’ social justice platform of pro-poor reforms has provided a hopeful counter-point to the hate pushed by Republican candidate Donald Trump.
India has been hit by a wave of student unrest, centred on Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), which has been spurred by government attacks. These attacks include demonising protesters and arresting activists simply for criticising the actions of the Indian state. JNU student union president Kanhaiya Kumar is among several activists charged with sedition.
Flag of PKK with image of Abdullah Ocalan. Millions of Kurds view Abdullah Öcalan as their political representative. His freedom is directly linked to a democratic and peaceful solution to the war in Turkey.
Amid growing incidents of violence at rallies for Donald Trump and protests confronting the Republican presidential frontrunner, the Republican Party’s establishment has opened a campaign to try to deny Trump the party’s presidential nomination. In a broadside attack on Trump, the Republican candidate in 2012 Mitt Romney launched a drive under the slogan “anyone but Trump.” He said a Trump presidency would be a disaster for “America” — strongly implying that voters should not support Trump in the general election if he wins the nomination. Republican fears
The rebels held out against British forces for a week. This Easter marks 100 years since Ireland's Easter Rising, when republicans launched an armed insurrection against British rule. Seizing Dublin's General Post Office, the rebels proclaimed an Irish republic based on the principles of freedom and equality.
Although many readers are watching voting results in the United States with baited breath, it is worth taking a look at Germany's partial state elections on March 13. They are far from pleasant, but important all the same — and not just for Germany. Only three of Germany's 16 states voted, with national elections not due until 2017. But if the present trends continue, watch out.
Slick Water: Fracking – and One Insider’s Stand Against the World’s Most Powerful Industry Andrew Nikiforuk Greystone Books/David Suzuki Institute 2015, 350 pages The fracturing of rocks to mine more fossil fuels was born with the oil business, writes the Canadian journalist, Andrew Nikiforuk, in Slick Water. During the world’s first oil boom in Pennsylvania in the 1850s, highly volatile nitro-glycerine and other explosives were used on sluggish wells with lethal risk, to turn them into gushers by creating new fractures to channel blocked oil to the surface.
Tegucigalpa, Honduras, March 16. A group of 730 leading Latin American experts and scholars have called for United States Secretary of State John Kerry to halt aid and support to Honduras until the Central American country improves its atrocious human rights record.
Experts have laughed at a prediction by the environment minister Greg Hunt that Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions peaked 10 years ago. Hunt told the ABC’s AM program: “I believe that we have reached what is sometimes known as peak emissions. In my best judgment … we reached peak emissions in 2005-06 ... and the course of history to come for Australia is that we will continue to be below that figure.” Experts have laughed at a prediction by the environment minister Greg Hunt that Australia's greenhouse gas emissions peaked 10 years ago.
Australia's large energy companies appear to prefer to accept fines for not building renewable energy rather than build it and weaken their investments in coal and gas generation. When the Tony Abbott government passed legislation to reduce the Renewable Energy Target (RET) by about 20% in June 2015, some supporters of renewables hoped that an end to policy uncertainty would free up finance for investment and get planned projects into the construction phase.

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