Jul 21, 2018

A regular collection of links to writings and broadcasts covered in other media.

On ABC’ Saturday Extra this weekend (in case you missed it)

  • Hundreds of thousands of troops will be deployed to protect next week’s election in Pakistan in order to ensure it’s free and fair; former PM Nawaz Sharif remains in prison on corruption charges, and Imran Khan and Benazir Bhutto’s son are the other leading candidates. So what is at stake? Christina Lamb OBE speaks to Andrew West.
  • Is it possible that the Adani Coal Mine has found the funds it needs to proceed with this controversial project ? Michael West reports.
  • The word treason has been on everybody’s lips following the Helsinki Summit.  So when does it become an unlawful, punishable offence? What would that entail and what might be the ramifications if this were pursued?    Professor Jens David Ohlin, is an international law and conflict specialist from  Cornell Law School
  • The use of the term populist in today’s mainstream media to describe certain politicians, is actually far removed from its historical meaning and if we returned to its roots, it could actually be a cause for fighting for the rights of society’s underdog.   Thomas Frank and David McKnight discuss the real meaning of the term.
  • In his book Hemingway’s Havana: A Reflection of the Writer’s Life in Cuba –photographer and writer Robert Wheeler has created an intimate portrait of the man… going beyond the raucous, hard-drinking image we’re used to, and capturing a soulful character who enjoyed a profound affinity with the Cuban people.
  • Following the vision of the Mayor, Anne Hidalgo, Paris is undergoing an extensive architectural and cultural revamp, not just in preparation for the 2024 Olympic Games – but in order to create a more sustainable, engaged metropolis.

(Geraldine Doogue is away this Saturday. Andrew West is taking her place.)

Other commentary

Ross Gittins writes that Corporate crime is far too common. It’s not just media sensationalism: there is evidence of a great deal of corporate lawlessness – wage theft, cartel behaviour, unauthorised charges to customers, failure to take responsibility for defective products and much else. Gittins’ article, summarising the 2018 Giblin Lecture delivered by ACCC Chairman Rod Sims, lists eleven specific corporate transgressions that have been exposed in recent months (and that’s without mentioning the banks).

Reading some Coalition-aligned media reports one could be led to believe that Audrey Zibelman, Managing Director of the Australian Energy Operator, is enthusiastic about coal-fired power, but that is not the case. Writing in Renew Economy, Giles Parkinson takes readers through the AEMO’s report on its Integrated System Plan, which confirms that “the cheapest and smartest replacement for the country’s ageing coal-fired generators will be in solar, wind and storage technologies”. Over the next twenty years we will see more geographically distributed sources of power, necessitating investment in new transmission infrastructure.

Are we still good Europeans” is Jürgen Habermas’s most recent article in Social Europe. He writes that a “frightened retreat behind national borders” cannot be the correct response to the onslaught of “a global capitalism driven by unregulated financial markets”. He praises Macron for taking steps “towards an agenda that reaches far beyond the interests of a single country, whereas Merkel is fighting for her political survival”. (Translation from “Sind wir noch gute Europäer”, in Zeitonline).

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