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The good oil on the Aussie way of life, and how it's changing out of sight!
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Posturing China and its road to nowhere

Posturing China and its road to nowhere | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

2000 years on from its famous Great Wall, China is building something else that can be easily seen from space – this time possibly with more offensive intentions.

 

The 2 kilometre stretch of Gobi desert pictured left appears to mimic a city’s road grid. Another image shows a grid pattern nearly 30 km across. Security experts surmise that these and other sites (see article’s linked gallery) are targets for missile testing.

 

And just when the arms race folly of the 60s and 70s was looking like something humankind had outgrown.

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Occupy Brisbane: Shocking brutality by police

Occupy Brisbane: Shocking brutality by police | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

When I first looked at the raw footage included in this Brisbane Times article on Thursday's police clearing of Occupy Brisbane from Queens Park, I thought the cries of the protesters were from fear - maybe even a little put on. But looking more carefully, I realised police were employing painful prisoner restraint techniques where joints are bent back on themselves.

 

The still above, 1 minute into the video, shows one girl having her wrist bent back and another having her shoulder and elbow wrenched. In both cases, these are deliberate attempts by police to inflict extreme pain. Both protesters were later released without charge - well, it's hard to charge someone for sitting quietly in a public place.

 

Given the context - the peaceable protest, the absence of retaliation or menace from the teens, the apparent lack of any former attempt to simply pull the protestors to their feet - it's probably not an overstatement to say that this was police torture. That they were willing to act in this way meters from video cameras is a sad indictment of Queensland police.

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Petitioning for marriage equality

Petitioning for marriage equality | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Same-sex couples still cannot marry in Australia, even in a civil union. The majority of Australians now support marriage equality, so it seems Gillard is wasting a golden opportunity to get us ‘moving forward’. After all, realistically, it’ll probably be several terms before we see another Labor federal government.

 

The right-wing Australian Christian Lobby is currently petitioning churchgoers for a continuation of marriage inequality. The ACL lobbies both major sides of government hard in order to distort the clear message of the national polling. So GetUp, a refreshingly progressive and non-partisan campaigning group, has set up a petition of its own.

 

Click the link to sign it – and trump the ACL – it’ll be 10 seconds well spent!

 

http://www.getup.org.au/marriagematters

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Bondi's tyre tortoise

Bondi's tyre tortoise | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Q&A with Tread Collective, Newtown trio of students-turned-tyre-wranglers.

 

Check out ‘Tortoise’ at Sculpture By The Sea, Bondi-Tamarama coastal walk; until 20/11/11.

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Street art on Sydney Harbour's Cockatoo Is

Street art on Sydney Harbour's Cockatoo Is | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

A major showcase of Australian and international street art has begun on Cockatoo Island, featuring over 150 artists. Everything from one-of-a-kind tees to major installations are on show, with content changing over the month.

 

This mural is by Belgian artist Roa, whose distinctive style places fine art animal depictions in incongruous poses and locations.

 

Free entry with ferry ticket; ends 11/12/11.

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7 Wonders comp - Pope plays favourites

7 Wonders comp - Pope plays favourites | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Pope Benedict XVI, formerly of the religious order once known as The Inquisition, has given his ‘Apostolic Blessing’ to the Polish entry in the search for the New Seven Wonders of Nature. As devout Catholics believe him to be infallible, and there are well over 1 billion Catholics in the world, this is likely to skew the competition significantly.

 

It’s a shame that this process should be becoming so politicised, but the countries whose natural wonders are chosen for the seven on Friday will doubtless all receive substantial boosts to tourism. Australia is the only country to have two entries amongst the final 28. You can vote for your seven wonders using the link below.

 

http://www.new7wonders.com/vote-2

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The 1% best wealth destroyers, not creators

The 1% best wealth destroyers, not creators | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

“If wealth was the inevitable result of hard work and enterprise, every woman in Africa would be a millionaire.” George Monbiot brilliantly shatters the illusion high-flyers paint of themselves as exceptional, and points to new research revealing instead psychopathic tendencies and judgement calls no better than the throw of the dice.

 

After 30 years of disastrous parasitism by The 1 Percent, over which our communal wealth has been drained almost to bankruptcy, a rapid and historic change in perception is taking place.

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Occupy Sydney and a heavy-handed police

Occupy Sydney and a heavy-handed police | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

"We are the workers, we are the indebted, we are the immigrants and the indigenous. We are [the] homeless, we are the students, we are the unemployed, we are the under-represented people of the world. We are the 99 per cent. We are Occupy Sydney."

 

Despite no clear laws having been broken, police moved in today and attempted to end the peaceful Occupy Sydney protest against capitalist greed. Of course, police still have vague charges at their dispolal such as 'hindering police'. This is the second time in a month Sydney police have used strong-arm tactics to try to end the protest.

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Possum pox!

Possum pox! | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Two Tassie women have contracted a rare disease after being bitten and scratched while trying to rescue a possum.

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The Oz bargained with lives - then reneged!

The Oz bargained with lives - then reneged! | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Former editor of The Australian, Paul Whittaker, bargained with police over how many lives would be lost if the newspaper published its scoop on an anti-terrorism operation before raids took place. The Oz agreed not to publish before their execution in return for a confidential briefing on the operation, but papers carrying the scoop were on the streets several hours before the raids!

 

This blows News Ltd's contention that the News of the World scandal is an isolated case wide open.

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Meet the world's 7,000,000,000th baby

Meet the world's 7,000,000,000th baby | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

The symbolic choice of Danica Camacho, from the Philippines, as the world's seven billionth baby by the UN is a wonderful idea. Adding six others to share the title, not so much!

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Joyce's Qantas strategy 'industrial terrorism'

Joyce's Qantas strategy 'industrial terrorism' | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Crikey’s Bernard Keane ponders Qantas’ cynical strategy and sees a concerted effort to rip it apart and forsake all its former values. It also stands front and centre of corporate Australia in staring down Gillard’s Fair Work Australia and seeking ever lower wages for ordinary workers, offshoring wherever possible.

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News Ltd journo endures tribal circumcision

News Ltd journo endures tribal circumcision | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

No, sadly it wasn’t Andrew Bolt. A reporter trying to get a scoop on Free West Papua movement members slipping into PNG from Indonesia was told a critical interview would be dependent on submitting to circumcision by bamboo sticks. Simon Eroro got the exclusive, plus News’ Scoop of the Year award – small consolation for such pain and the ongoing hit on his sex life.

 

The News Limited judges heralded Eroro’s piece, talking about the subsequent “major [PNG] operation to tighten the borders and close down the OPM refugee camps”. Which is a tidily black & white assessment, given how Indonesia’s claim to West Papua is hotly disputed and widely considered a hostile occupation.

 

Eroro’s PNG Post-Courier article, at under 350 words (see link below), is less than Bolt might expend describing what he’d just learnt from his cab driver on the dangers of multiculturalism. Personally, if I’d just had my manhood desecrated I’d want my own Oprah-style TV network at the very least!

 

http://www.postcourier.com.pg/20100817/news03.htm

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Devil Ark: saving the Tassie devil

Devil Ark: saving the Tassie devil | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

An hour’s drive north of Sydney, Devil Ark is doing its all to save the endangered Tasmanian devil. It’s a new conservation program of the Australian Reptile Park, and it’s creating an insurance population of healthy, genetically diverse devils that can be reintroduced to Tasmania once the devastating DFTD disease has run its course. It’s an ambitious program, and they could do with your elbow grease or back-of-the-sofa coins.

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Occupy Melbourne: Doyle vs Reality

Occupy Melbourne: Doyle vs Reality | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

A common tactic of those trying to play down protests such as the Occupy movement is to paint those who take part as crackpot extremists. A simple but highly effective counter to this being used by Occupy Melbourne is this Tumblr account featuring supporters holding up hand-written messages about themselves and why this is important to them. Their messages are addressed to Robert Doyle, the Liberal lord mayor of Melbourne.

 

The genesis was probably this site: http://wearethe99percent.tumblr.com/

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Rhino Stew's curator insight, May 21, 2015 6:04 AM

What do you think about Australian culture TODAY?

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Vintage clothing becoming a seller's market

Vintage clothing becoming a seller's market | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Interest in vintage fashion from a variety of eras – particularly the 20s, 40s, 50s and 60s – has surged recently, helped on by popular TV series Underbelly: Razor. And now Australia's first auction house specialising in this area has opened in Sydney – Wisteria Auctions. Prices sought and attained are certainly not old money, and will likely prompt many an attic rummage!

 

http://www.wisteriaauctions.com.au/

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Rupert Murdoch to chair Australia’s News Ltd

Rupert Murdoch to chair Australia’s News Ltd | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Rupert Murdoch is to take over as News Ltd chairman, after John Hartigan’s ‘resignation’ during Murdoch’s visit to Australia. The announcement comes one day into a federal government inquiry into “unethically slanted coverage that aims at ‘regime change’ in Canberra”. The FT article describes Hartigan as a thorn in the side of the Labor government.

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Two Aussie icons vying for places as New 7 Wonders of Nature – vote now!

Two Aussie icons vying for places as New 7 Wonders of Nature – vote now! | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Uluru and The Great Barrier Reef are amongst 28 spectacular world locations which are finalists to become the New Seven Wonders of Nature. Earth Hour co-founder, Andy Ridley, is our ambassador in the competition, and Tourism Australia is pushing hard.

 

They’ve set up ‘the world’s most remote polling booth’, on the tiny sandbank island of Upolu Cay, 30 kilometres northeast of Cairns, to spruik our entries: you can snorkel up to it and vote electronically. (Upolu Cay certainly has to be a better location for the stunt than Gladstone Harbour!)

 

Follow the link to see all 28 finalists and vote. Voting ends 11/11/11.

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Rhino Stew's curator insight, May 21, 2015 6:05 AM

What identifies as Australian culture?

 

#EDSE12024

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CO2 set to exceed worst-case scenarios

CO2 set to exceed worst-case scenarios | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

2010 saw record global CO2 emissions after a 6% jump. New projections are worse than the worst-case scenarios of the IPCC's 2007 report, and could see a 5°C temperature rise - or higher - by the end of the Century, with catastrophic results. Urgent global action is needed to avert this.

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Barrier Reef's World Heritage status shaky

Barrier Reef's World Heritage status shaky | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

THE Great Barrier Reef is in danger of losing its World Heritage status, as dredging of Gladstone Harbour releases dangerous amounts of contaminants such as aluminium, copper and chromium.

 

Extensive sea life poisoning has already been detected - as reported on tonight's ABC Four Corners program - and only 1.5 million of a planned 46 million cubic meters have so far been dredged. This 20 year dredging program associated with the construction of three coal seam gas plants risks World Heritage status, warns the UN's UNESCO.

 

GetUp has set up a petition against this environmental damage here: http://www.getup.org.au/dredging-the-reef

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The Slap: Rosie's Playlist

The Slap: Rosie's Playlist | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

To help prepare Melissa George for her role as Rosie in The Slap, author Christos Tsiolkas gave her a playlist of songs that touch on key moments of the character’s life.

 

Notes on these connections are included. For instance: "Daughter, by Pearl Jam - Wanting to get the f#@$ out of Perth."

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The many faces of John Bell

The many faces of John Bell | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Yes, but can he do happy and sad?

 

Daniel Boud's photo sequence of Bell Shakespeare Company director John Bell.

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Occupy Melbourne sleeps under the stars

Occupy Melbourne sleeps under the stars | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Occupy Melbourne have found a loophole in a regulation the Council is trying to use to end their occupation. It states "unless in accordance with a permit, a person must not camp in, or on, any public places in a vehicle, tent, caravan or any type of temporary or provisional form of accommodation". So they are now sleeping under the stars with none of those things.

 

"We aim to create a more socially, environmentally and politically just world through direct democracy and participation in it", said spokeswoman Sam Castro.

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Ausculture on Scoop.it!

Ausculture on Scoop.it! | Australian Culture | Scoop.it

Welcome to ausculture’s latest incarnation. Ausculture has been a frothy blog, a social bookmarking site and a more in-depth blog. And now it’s all three!

 

The site at http://www.ausculture.com/ (pictured above) has been unable to accept new posts for over 6 months due to a server problem, and Patrick is about to take it offline due to high hosting costs. But fear not, ausculture addict/s – this will be better!

 

Scoop.it! wins over Twitter for presenting interesting content, and makes it easy to share and interact with. Here, you will find a smorgasbord of Australian Culture titbits – pieces in a jigsaw of where we’re at and where we’re heading. (Did I just mix three metaphors?)

 

It’s easy to follow this page via Twitter or Facebook, or you can follow my twitter: @ausculture.

 

Ausculture: more fun than going to the dentist, since 2004!

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