It is staggering that with one albeit very serious case overseas, that of the Ben Zygier suicide, Ben Saul (The Age, 20/2/13) wants to turn back the clock of globalisation and multiculturalism. In so doing he demonstrates profound ignorance of the reality of the contemporary migrant experience and normative global legal practice around citizenship.
With over 80 per cent of the world’s population professing religious belief, holding such belief must be considered a common human characteristic. Moreover, religious belief is relevant to both social and private realms. Religious belief systems provide a meaning for existence through which adherents interpret their own circumstances and make decisions on how to act and interact in wider society. The values and attitudes associated with religious beliefs within countries therefore affect both public policy settings as well as social behaviours (with both positive and harmful consequences possible).
Hot on the heels of the revelation that Sri Lankan soldiers murdered the 12-year-old son of Tamil Tiger leader Prabhakaran in cold blood and last week’s shooting of a journalist in Colombo, the International Crisis Group has released a report deploring what it calls Sri Lanka’s "authoritarian turn". The ICG report calls for international action to halt the Sri Lankan government's erosion of democracy and its recent "constitutional coup".
The ICG report says that the Sri Lankan government has made no meaningful progress on accountability for war crimes that occurred during the conclusion of its war against the Tamil Tigers in 2009. "Instead," it said, the Sri Lankan government "has accelerated the country’s authoritarian turn, with attacks on the judiciary and political dissent that threaten long-term stability and peace".
This opinion piece first appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald on 20 February 2013.
On Wednesday, the Select Committee of the NSW Parliamentary Inquiry into the partial defence of provocation will release its final report recommending reform to a law that has long animated debate and attracted criticism.
Today marks the release of the revised Australian Dietary Guidelines. So what has changed since the last update in 2003? Very little in the way of the main recommendations, but the evidence base for the guidelines has grown stronger.
Although it is a minor diplomatic affront to Australia, it was unsurprising that Senator Nick Xenophon was deported from Malaysia yesterday. Most regional governments rarely tolerate criticism of how they exercise political power. Being kicked out of a regional country -- or, worse, facing court -- has been, for some regional critics, a relatively common experience.
Xenophon was detained and deported as a "security risk" under the Immigration Act and this status follows the sweeping logic of Malaysia’s Internal Security Act (ISA). The ISA is a grab-all law, introduced by the colonial British to repress any form of dissent.
Xenophon’s identification as a "security risk" reflects the high degree of concern that Malaysia’s ruling Barisan Nasional (BN -- National Front) government has over the coming Malaysian elections. The elections are scheduled to be held by June 27.
A simple bowl of soup has been found to be an effective way to curb appetite and promote feelings of fullness.
True hunger is a rare experience for most people in the developed world. What people typically experience are feelings of desire for particular foods or a need to feel ‘full’
Satiety is the term scientists use to mean the feelings of fullness we experience after a large meal. What drives satiety is a complex mix of psychological and physiological factors including physical stretching of the stomach and small intestine from food and a cascade of release of hormones that feed back into the brain to tell us we are full.
We are surprisingly poor judges how a particular event will make us feel into the future. In other words, we rely on how we feel right now to predict how we might feel about something later. Psychologists call it affective forecasting.
Australia's relationship with East Timor is at risk as the deadline looms on a hotly disputed and lucrative liquid natural gas project -- with no resolution in sight.
West Australian-based Woodside Petroleum has until February 23 to reach an agreement with the government of East Timor over the site of processing LNG or else the arrangement between the two is likely to be stopped. This would then trigger the cancellation of Australia’s sea boundary agreements with East Timor.
At this late stage it's unlikely Woodside will change its long-held position and accede to East Timor's demand that the LNG be processed on East Timor’s south coast. Woodside's preferred option is a floating processing platform at the Greater Sunrise LNG field in the Timor Sea.
Recently, human growth hormone (or HGH) has found media attention for its use by sports people to gain an unfair competitive advantage.
HGH is naturally produced in the body just below the brain in the anterior pituitary gland as part of a family of peptide hormones. HGH performs a wide (and not yet fully understood) range of signaling functions in the body, such as stimulating the immune system and strengthening bone through increased calcium retention; but, from a doping point of view, it’s ability to trigger the secretion of insulin like growth factor (IGF-1) is of interest.