A confident Tony Abbott says the Coalition can lock in an election-winning lead in the opinion polls. The Liberal leader says he has detected a "tectonic shift" in the electorate because decent working people were suspicious of Labor's alliance with the Greens, horrified about losing control of the borders, and worried about the carbon tax. But during a closed-door pep talk for MPs yesterday, he also warned "success can be fleeting and ephemeral".
One-in-five parents report having safety concerns for themselves or their child as a result of ongoing contact with the other parent after separation, a new report reveals. And most parents who report a recent experience of being harmed physically by their ex-partner say their children witnessed the violence or abuse. The Attorney-General, Robert McClelland, will today release research from the Australian Institute of Family Studies, which finds parental conflict, fear, abuse, or safety concerns remain strong for a significant number of parents following separation. The government will use the research to boost its case for reform of the family law system to further protect children.
The recent Federal budget has underlined the fact that mental ill-health is the major health issue facing Australians in the early part of the 21st century. Responding to the reality that Australians now regard mental health among the top three national concerns, just behind the economy and climate change, all sides of politics now support substantial growth in investment in mental health care. The Gillard Government allocated $2.2 billion as a decent down payment in a tight budget on mental health reform, crucially beginning to build strength in early intervention models for young people, who bear the main burden of onset for the major mental disorders of adult life. Yet even this investment will merely lift the proportion of the total health budget from 7 per cent to closer to 8 per cent.
A short time ago my two daughters were in town and the three of us found ourselves discussing my pieces for Online Opinion. The one thing they strongly objected to was my insistence on the singular nature of Christ to the exclusion of all others. Being broadminded liberal moderns they objected to my exclusion of other ways to God or enlightenment. They are supported by the current ideology that sees inclusiveness as the highest virtue. The problem arose again in a theology class I was tutoring at Notre Dame University in Fremantle with the same result. I must have been seen as narrowly sectarian and ignorant of other cultures and religions.
Sex selection of foetuses in India has led to 7.1 million fewer girls than boys up to age six, a gender gap that has widened by more than a million in a decade, according to a study released today. In Indian families in which the first child has been a girl, more and more parents with access to prenatal ultrasound testing are aborting a second female in the hope that a subsequent pregnancy will yield a boy, said the study, published in The Lancet. The increasingly lopsided ratio of girls to boys is larger in wealthy households than poorer ones, the researchers reported.
The murder of another Christian in the city of Kirkuk, Northern Iraq, has left the country’s faithful shaken. Twenty-nine year old Ashur Yacob Issa was kidnapped late Friday or early Saturday morning (13th or 14th May) and a ransom of approximately $100,000 was demanded of his parents. The young Catholic’s body was discovered beheaded and mutilated Monday morning (May 16th), after his poor family was unable to meet the kidnappers demand for money. The Archbishop of Kirkuk, Msgr. Louis Sako denounced the murder and has appealed “to those who were capable of committing such an inhuman act...” that they think of the children they have left orphaned and the woman now a widow. If there is no human justice, sooner or later, there will be divine justice.
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February 16, 2018
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