NUMBER 14 AUTUMN/WINTER 2004
EDITORIAL: If Labor under Latham wins the next federal election,
its main task will be to increase investment in public infrastructure
and repair the damage done to public education and health systems by
the Howard government. Dissent outlines the political challenges this
presents and how they can be overcome.
McAULEY describes how the decision by the
Howard Government to halve the capital gains tax rate has rewarded
speculation, penalised hard work and long-term investment and
contributed to the housing bubble.
GREG FORD & CHARLES LIVINGSTONE analyse how the Howard
government has undermined Medicare’s key elements – particularly bulk
billing and universality – and discuss what might be done to rectify
LUKIN reviews Don Watson’s Death
Sentence: the Decay of Public Language and argues that an
understanding of the power of language helps explain how language is
used to keep the poor poor, to wage unjust wars and to monopolise
LLOYD discusses Mark Latham’s
exhortations promoting social capital in the form of activism,
participation, lifelong learning and social entrepreneurship and points
out that these are mere hollow shells without the resources supplied by
the redistributive state.
perspective of a career in higher education (Vice-Chancellor of the
University of Canberra and the first Chairman of the Australian
Research Council) DON AITKIN reflects on the meaning of dissent
and its role in the generation of ideas which are the essential
ingredient of change.
BABEL writes a personal reflection of
what it feels like to be an American who loves his country and wept
over the events of September 11, who shares the general fear of
terrorism but worries that those who, like him, oppose the policies of
the Bush administration, will be regarded as traitors.
MUIR says that the distinctive aspect of
the Bush doctrine is not pre-emption, but to expand and prolong US
FOLEY traces the growing interdependence
between legal and illegal economies and suggests that because it is not
possible for the West to re-colonise states that harbour terrorist
groups and because terrorism feeds on embargoes, the only way to combat
it is for the West to promote economic and political change based on
principles of international justice and co-operation.
JIM JUPP reviews Free Radicals by John McLaren which
looks at the post war political influence of Ken Gott, Stephen Murray
Smith and Ian Turner who all left the Communist Party in the 1950s.
FRED ARGY examines the deep philosophical divisions within the
Left in Australia, particularly over welfare and fiscal stance, and
suggests how they might be reconciled so that scarce intellectual
resources can be directed at the real enemy – the ideological Right.
DOUG COCKS looks at the argument advanced by Susan Greenfield that
human nature may not be sufficiently robust to survive the next wave of
technological change. He suggests that social character probably will
change, but adapt successfully as it did when the modern individual
emerged from the medieval social structure and renaissance economic
activity replaced salvation as the main social objective.
FISHER argues that a switch to renewable
energy is not a panacea. Energy conservation is the cheapest and most
environmentally benign energy source.
BULWORTH looks at the history of the UN
and argues that right from its beginnings in 1945, the US has always
seen the UN as an instrument of American foreign policy. Download the whole article here.
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