The future for bushfire volunteers

On my late evening dog walks in the rural village of Yangan near Warwick, it has become customary to wave to the volunteer firefighters as they arrive back at base. If they can lift their arms, they wave back. These volunteers, known in Australia as ‘firies’, are holding containment lines around multiple fires burning in the ranges around Cunningham’s Gap. The Cunningham Highway between Warwick and Brisbane has been closed for two weeks due to…

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Human Rights and Halloween

You always have to look for the silver lining; like the Queensland Parliament introducing a Human Rights Act on the same day (31st October) that people were walking the streets dressed as ghouls and zombies, reminding us that Christmas is just 55 days away. Christmas Island is just around the corner too – well, it’s precisely 1,550 kms north-west of Perth. But it is an Australian territory, unlike Nauru and Manus Island. I mention human…

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The Roads More Or Less Travelled

All roads lead to Canberra – at least that’s what most politicians think. This week we’re having a break from politics, the plight of refugees and why Australia’s asylum seeker policies are on the nose. Today guest writer Laurel Wilson (aka She Who Also Writes) looks at the hazards of the highway for travellers. This post contains 21 images. – Ed. Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, I’m feeling quite refreshed after our 6 week, 6,000 kilometre road…

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Press vote now

Queenslanders who voted ‘Yes’ for four-year fixed parliamentary terms last weekend may live to rue the day. The people have spoken, although there is a vigorous debate about how well-informed they were at the time they voted. And while vote counting is not complete, critics are saying 53.1% for the affirmative is a poor result, considering it had bipartisan support. The people certainly spoke back in 1967 when a referendum was held to count Aborigines…

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