Leave the light on

Australia is currently mourning the loss of a young sportsman, felled by a cricket ball to the temple while he was playing state cricket. 25 years old and in the prime of his life and career. It’s a tragedy. I feel for his family and friends. I also feel terribly sad for the poor young man who bowled that ball. I should think he’s going to need therapy for quite some time.  Yes, a nation’s grief has been poured out across the media, almost to the point of overkill, and I understand. It’s shocking to think that a fit young man could lose his life while playing sport. However, my fellow Australians don’t seem to be as affected by the news that some of the Sri Lankan refugees that we sent back, have been arrested in Sri Lanka. It...

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The G20

Well, the G20 is up and running in sunny Queensland. Today, in Brisbane, it’s around 37C (98.6F) and, being Queensland, it’s most likely humid too. The delegates probably won’t notice, coming from their air-conditioned hotels, in their air-conditioned limousines, to an air-conditioned venue. Even so, I wonder how many of their journalistic countrymen will mention the tough climatic conditions. Oh wait…I forgot, Mr Abbott doesn’t want the climate to appear on the agenda. They’ll probably just mutter under their breath about it while lining up for their free drinks, or waiting for an elevator that’s secure, private and air-conditioned. What is the G20? As far as I can gather it’s the 20 countries in the world with the...

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The Christmas pageant.

The annual Christmas pageant (for my American friends think: Macey’s parade without the giant balloons) is over for another year. The bands have hung up their tubas and bagpipes, the clowns are probably still wiping off the make-up, the fairies have gone to twinkle elsewhere, the weird giant toys are back in the warehouse and Father Christmas is safely ensconced in the Magic Cave. There will be reminders in the city streets for a few days yet. For example, all the lovely chalk drawings on the roads, made by children who arrived at their vantage point about three hours before the parade started and had ‘nothing to doooooo’. And, the magic blue line that no one ever goes over while the parade is on, and which doesn’t need any policing:...

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Careful what you think…

I’ve just heard that Nabul Rajab, a human rights defender, is going on trial tomorrow for “publicly insulting official institutions”, with a possibility of three years in jail. I won’t say which country, in case someone is already collecting meta data here in Oz. I also saw, a couple of days ago, a news report on IS (IS, IL, State…add your own ending) beheading people (including Muslims) who don’t agree with their methodology. Big surprise there. Who’d have thought they’d go to such extremes? A young mother in Pakistan is currently waiting for her execution because she was accused of blasphemy. It seems when two Muslim women wouldn’t let her have a drink of their water because she’s “unclean”...

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