Those decrying Brexit and the rise of Trumpism point to the victory of emotion and lies over facts and evidence in determining policies and choosing leaders. The role of the media in providing ‘balanced’ coverage allows emotion, lies and facts to be equally reported, providing credibility to fictions. Whatever happened to ‘facts’? Why don’t facts trump lies in complex policy decisions?Read More »
I’ve been intrigued by the Beyonce phenomenon (what does she sing/do/say that makes her no. 1?) for some time. Recently I decided to buy (yes, pay for) her new CD, Lemonade, which she released, unheralded, with no standard distribution system, via her facebook page. I was fascinated by the bold, anti-establishment approach, so listened to a song or two on YouTube (along with the millions who had already listened in the first week, really), found them compelling, and decided to buy it. Analysis: this is an amazing album that breaks/sets so many trends, you too should consider it. Why?Read More »
In answering a personal survey recently, I was asked my name, apparently so the surveyors could verify my existence. Hesitantly, I gave my name as ‘Graham’…and wasn’t asked for anything further. But then I was asked for an email address. The surveyor cheerfully told me I could give a false email. So I made up a Hotmail address. When I ask my children the surname of their friend Jack or Amy, they look at me strangely – why do you want to know that? Everywhere, first names seem sufficient to identify people, even in my choir when the ‘three Grahams’ stand next to each other in the bass back row. Which brought me to the questions of what is a person’s ‘name’…and what will be in the future?Read More »
As the US election map turned predominantly Republican red on TV yesterday, with a thin film of Democrat blue around the international edges, the hopes and dreams of rational thinkers slumped. Previously America had voted in the clown, George W Bush. Now it has voted in a marketing phenomenon, Donald Trump. While it is understandable that white American men in the mid-West might be taken in by the mythology of ‘Make America Great Again’ – a look back at the past – how could white American women, educated to think and act independently, vote for Trump?Read More »
Yesterday, the French owners, ENGIE, announced they would be closing the Hazelwood brown coal power station in the Latrobe Valley, Victoria. Press announcements immediately focussed on job losses, the plight of the workers and possible future electricity price increases. But environmentalists – and hopefully the society – have been hoping and praying for this closure for YEARS! This is EXACTLY the type of jobs we want to lose, the type of industry we want to lose. This is a wonderful good news story. Let me explain.Read More »
Halloween is over for another year, thank god. I closed my blinds, turned off the lights at the front of my house so the house would seem empty and hid quietly in the back. I cringed each time the doorbell rang, not moving, so the groups of children seeking gifts of sweets would go away.
Halloween is not an Australian event. But we celebrate other country’s events, such as Chinese New Year and Indian Diwali. What’s wrong with celebrating Halloween?