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Social Issues

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Millions Homeless After Burma Cyclone


The Burmese government continues to show its contempt for human life, being unable to pin down the exact number dead or homeless. This is in stark contrast to their exact figures for livestock lost – 1,250,194 chickens and 136,804 buffaloes, including three owned by the government, according to reports in the UK Guardian today.. Cyclone … Continue reading

Five Million Homeless After Chinese Earthquake


Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang has issued an urgent international appeal for 3.3 million tents and temporary shelters, to aid the 5 ½  million people left homeless in China as a result of the May 12th earthquake, and subsequent aftershocks.  More than 15 million homes were destroyed in the Chengdu based disaster, and these … Continue reading

Australian Homeless Youth Numbers Double


The National Youth Commission (NYC) this month released it’s report on youth homelessness, stating that the number of youths aged 12-25 and homeless has doubled in the past twenty years.  This age group now makes up one third of the total 100,000 (estimated) homeless population in Australia. About half of all homeless youths are turned … Continue reading

Seattle Underground Homeless


Are homeless people living in undeveloped parts of Seattle’s abandoned underground city? From speaking with some of the locals, it would seem that, unpleasant as it is, some homeless do actually live in the underground city. I did the tou, and later talked to the tour guide away from the group. I noticed large holes … Continue reading

Charities Helping Themselves


About 90% of Australian people donate an average of $400 per person to charity each year. But how much do the charities use to help others, and how much do they use to help themselves?  A survey by Choice magazine last month showed some surprising results. Of the 11 major charities surveyed, all with exactly … Continue reading

Australian Charities Helping Themselves


About 90% of Australian people donate an average of $400 per person to charity each year. But how much do the charities use to help others, and how much do they use to help themselves? A survey by Choice magazine last month showed some surprising results. Of the 11 major charities surveyed, all with exactly … Continue reading

Zimbabwe’s Homelessness Crisis


It looks like Robert Mugabe’s reign of terror in Zimbabwe is coming to an end. While the African leader may be departing soon (hopefully), it will take years, or even decades, to make a hole in the homelessness and economic crises he created. The economic destruction of Zimbabwe is appalled by all around the world. … Continue reading

Australian Street Person Starts Homelessness Projects Funding


A lot of the streeties (street people) have interesting lives and backgrounds.  One such guy I met, and developed a certain respect for, was Shane S, who managed to convince Queensland Premier Peter Beattie to come up with $135 million dollars in Homelessness Projects Funding..  Shane sold the Big Issue in Brisbane.  He also held … Continue reading

Australian Government Deserts Homeless Foreigner


Walter was a foreign citizen who came to Australia to work, became gravely ill, and ended up on the streets because if the illness. He faced permanent blindness and eventually death, yet the Australian government would do nothing to help him. At the time I met Walter (not his real name), I was working for … Continue reading

Unjust Rent Increases Force People Onto The Streets


One of the most despicable actions forcing people onto the streets are the tactics of unscrupulous real estate agents (realtors). These unconscionable people play on the fact that, with rising interest rates, many people are forced out of the homes they own. Therefore, there are now more people looking for rentals than there are rentals … Continue reading

The New Homeless


Most people in the mainstream regard homeless people as either mentally ill, drug or alcohol dependent, or some other such degree of marginalisation. However, there seems to be more and more “average” people joining the ranks of the homeless. I watched the early news this morning, and saw a story of a woman who, I … Continue reading

Living On The Streets Of China


This is a personal experience. In 2003, I lived a year in China. I was teaching English, as well as researching homelessness. Which later proved ironic, as I became one of China’s homeless. A corrupt immigration police officer claimed my visa had expired, and took my passport from me. This is in violation of international … Continue reading

Makes No Scents


Every morning, I wake up, and have a shower. I use scented shampoo and scented conditioner to make my hair smell nice. I use scented soap and scented body wash to make me smell nice all over. Then I use a scented deodorant to keep me smelling nice all day. I also use a scented … Continue reading

Murphy’s Law 06 Constance Of Thought


Murphy felt the change as soon as he stepped into Chinatown. It was one step from the streets of Brisbane. It was also a giant step back into the village of Jiangdu, in Eastern China. He reflected that smell was the major trigger of memory. He drew deep breath, and took in the smells of … Continue reading

Murphy’s Law 05 Pride Without Prejudice


Murphy listened with intent, as the man on stage spoke. The topic was Aboriginal Education, and the speaker knew his stuff first hand. Murphy listened, and took notes. He had much to learn here, and he didn’t want to miss a thing. He reflected what he knew of this man’s life, and the struggles he … Continue reading

Murphy’s Law 04 Cop This


Murphy heard the man yelling at the woman, and saw her cowering from him. She covered her face with her hands, and crouched so her knees covered her stomach and lower body. The instincts of a woman used to being hit. Murphy’s instinct was to go to her assistance, but then he noticed the police … Continue reading

Media Release 01 Big Issue Aboriginal Vendors


Media Release – National Indigenous Times – Aboriginal Vendors AUSTRALIA’S leading street magazine, The Big Issue, is looking for Indigenous people who want to work for themselves. The non-profit magazine is sold on the streets by people like Reuben (pictured) who has been selling The Big Issue in Brisbane for two months. He enjoys meeting … Continue reading

Murphy’s Law 03 River Deep


Murphy always admired the work of the emergency services. Seeing them on the news trying to locate a woman missing in floodwaters in Queensland, his stomach tightened as he felt the familiar certainty that nothing good would come of their search. It was partly a survival instinct he had developed after 30-odd years as an … Continue reading

Big Issue Vendors 01 Shane S


Shane sells the Big Issue outside Borders Books on the corner of Albert and Elizabeth Streets, Brisbane. Raise your hand if you have met a Premier and helped to get the ball rolling on $135 million of extra funding towards homelessness projects. No? Well, Brisbane vendor Shane can lay claim to doing just that. Shane … Continue reading

Murphy’s Law 02 Play A Song For Me


Murphy listened with interest to the school headmaster. The man told of his plans for introduction of inclusive education strategies into his school. Many considered Murphy something of an expert on the subject. Murphy didn’t like that label. He had been lucky enough to work with many so-called disadvantaged people. It was just that he … Continue reading

Letters To Me Mum 01 Everything’s All Write


Dear Mum Sorry I haven’t written for a while. OK, so it’s been three years. This is just a short note to let you know where I’m up to with things. As you know, my injury has stopped me from getting a lot of jobs. That narrow-mindedness really makes me mad. Well, now I have … Continue reading

Murphy’s Law 01 China Streets


Murphy watched as the seller sold his papers on the street corner. Murphy knew the man was homeless, and admired the work he was doing. He was trying to help himself, and making money to live on. This allowed him to feed himself, and maybe buy things he needed. Murphy decided this was good, and … Continue reading

Report: National Council of Women (Queensland) – Psychiatric Homelessness


Psychiatric Homelessness Seminar National Council of Women Queensland Branch Part One A seminar on Psychiatric Homelessness was held in Brisbane on 11th August 2005, convened by the National Council of Women Queensland Branch. The issue was Psychiatric Homelessness. I have some first hand dealings with this issue, over many years in various positions, and was … Continue reading

Equity


The policeman, and prisoner, both stand in the court; Both equal, in the eyes of the law. It was just yesterday, that these two had fought, But now they’re equal, in the eyes of the law. The black man, they say, raped a white girl; All equal in the eyes of the law. Now, as … Continue reading

Essay: Discourse Theory and Black English Vernacular Amongst Australian Aborigines


To understand the Discourse Theory, it is first necessary to distinguish between the terms “Discourse” (with a capital letter) and “discourse” (all lower-case). The term “Discourse” refers to the ways in which social and political inequity is reproduced (or subverted) through the uses to which language is put; whilst “discourse” refers to the actual use … Continue reading

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Most Recent Posts Post on My Blog About China: China News

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China plundered, India blundered and Sri Lanka surrendered  

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