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Photo: Mark Meid/Flickr

In response to Obama’s recent comments about him in his DNC speech, Trump said the only true words I think I’ve ever heard him utter: “The reason I’m here is because of President Obama and Joe Biden, because if they did a good job I wouldn’t be here….but they did such a bad job that I stand before you as President.”

As much as it kills me to agree with anything Trump says, in this case he’s right. The Democrats created the conditions which led directly to his rise because Obama’s presidency was the last straw for millions who had felt ignored and betrayed by the Democrats for years. …


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Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

Yesterday, as I was watching a 90s sitcom (don’t judge me), an Easter greeting from some well-known celebrities came on. Nothing unusual in that, except this year, in addition to the usual holiday wishes, they all implored viewers to ‘stay strong’ because ‘we will get through this together.’

Remember a couple of months ago, when the C-word was making only minor ripples in newsfeeds. Who can believe it’s come to this, and so quickly. That people have been reduced to weeping in carparks throughout the world over toilet paper.

In the Sydney Morning Herald today, there was a story describing how the police are devoting extensive resources to ‘cracking down on holidaymakers’ over the long weekend simply for being holidaymakers. …


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Photo by Sandy Millar on Unsplash

Imagine this: A group of young conservatives, outraged by the public funding of a library story time featuring drag queens reading to children decide to disrupt the event. They surround the readers chanting ‘drag queens are not for kids.’

Children are traumatised, the drag queens are forced to defend themselves and parents who gave permission for their kids to be there are outraged. The whole thing is caught on film and picked up by the media, quickly becoming viral.

The next morning, the protest leader takes his own life by jumping in front of a train at a suburban station. …


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Image: Min An/Pexels

How I wish you were here.

This was the sentiment expressed by many Australians in December as our Prime Minister Scott Morrison holidayed in Hawaii while vast swathes of the country were consumed by flames.

The ravaged landscape left behind is littered with blackened trees and the carcasses of animals. One billion dead animals by some estimates. Thousands have lost their homes and scores have died.

While the fires continue to rage, the debate over climate change rages too, but not in the corridors of power. Here it’s business as usual as spin doctors attempt to come up with a message to convey the impression the government is listening to people’s increasingly desperate concerns, while committing to doing nothing at all. …


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Photo: Jamie McInall/Pexels

When the internet began to reshape the lives of ordinary people in the late 1990s, some claimed it was the beginning of a new age of democracy and freedom. This technology, they said, would make it easier for people all over the world to access information and participate.

Dr Gary Selnow told a State Department conference in 2000 that “the real promise of the Net for democracy building is how people use it. Unlike the traditional one-way flow of information…the Internet gives users an active role. …


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What’s the reason you choose to write? Are you seeking fame and fortune? (good luck with that). Do you have a burning need to share your musings with others? Do you want to make the world a better place, or is writing a safety valve for thoughts and emotions that have no other outlet?

For me its a combination of the last two. I write because it allows me to at least feel like I’m making a small difference. …


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Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

It seems everyone is talking about mindfulness lately. Advocates of this ancient practice claim staying present in the moment increases happiness and well-being, and who doesn’t want a piece of that in these troubled times?

I decided to give it a try the other day at the traffic lights when I realized I was completely disconnected from the present. Instead of staring blindly at the lights waiting for them to change while my mind was elsewhere, I focused my attention on how I felt and what was happening around me in that moment. …


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Image from pixabay.com

I have nothing against Marie Kondo. She seems like a nice person, and I agree wholeheartedly with the minimalist lifestyle that she advocates. A less materialistic approach is desperately needed at a time when the planet is being suffocated by endless waste from our throw-away society.

But minimalism is not enough, and I fear that as the problems get too big and frightening people have turned inwards to focus on things they can control. …


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Netflix has been experimenting with the ‘choose-your-own adventure’ format for a while now. The release of Black Mirror: Bandersnatch has led some to suggest this is #TheNextBigThing which will transform the way we consume movies.

On the surface, being able to interact with the storyline is very appealing for ‘generation click,’ but despite its novelty, I don’t believe this format will become mainstream. The simple reason is that it doesn’t have the ability to satisfy viewers in the same way as the traditional storyline, which is humanity’s most enduring art form for a reason.

Bandersnatch works, but only because at its heart, it’s a traditional narrative. It’s also very clever and self-aware. The viewer gets to influence events by making decisions about what breakfast cereal the protagonist eats through to whether he murders and chops up his father. Each decision may lead down a different pathway, but a surprising number end with patricide. The ‘happiest’ ending leads to his death. …


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Cultivating an ‘attitude of gratitude’ sounds easy. All you need to do is come up with some things that you’re thankful for, jot them down in your gratitude journal, and voilã, all the benefits of this magical sentiment will be yours.

These benefits include better physical and mental health, more harmonious relationships and improved self-esteem. If you believe in the Law of Attraction, expressing gratitude will bring more of the things you’re grateful for into your life.

What could be simpler than this? Even miserable people can come up with a few things in their life to feel happy about. Dedicated gratitude journal writers are not afraid to celebrate the small stuff, from the way the sunlight shines through the curtains in the morning to the tasty sandwich they had for lunch. …

About

Janine H

Writer, Reader, Dreamer

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