August 8th 2009

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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY: Economic bounce masks deep structural crisis

ENERGY: What can Australia do when the fuel runs out?

EDITORIAL: Overseas lesson in energy conservation

CANBERRA OBSERVED: Turnbull's judgement under a cloud

SCHOOLS: The choice so few parents can afford to make

MARRIAGE: The personal and social costs of cohabitation

OPINION: Keeping marriage between a man and a woman

CHINA: Cracks appear in China's detested one-child policy

POLITICAL IDEAS: Distributist responses to the global economic crisis

WAR ON TERROR: What will we learn from the Jakarta bombings?

EUROPE: Obama told: don't abandon central and eastern Europe

OBITUARY: Polish philosopher Leszek Kolakowski dies at 81

REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH: Protest at News Weekly article on East Timor

Tony Abbott on divorce (letter)

Time for a people's bank? (letter)

AS THE WORLD TURNS: Genderless child-rearing experiment / Hostility towards masculinity / Dear baby-boomers ... / Shopkeepers honoured

BOOK REVIEW: POMPEII: The Life of a Roman Town, by Mary Beard

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Tony Abbott on divorce (letter)

by Jay Nauss

News Weekly, August 8, 2009

I was interested to hear a few days ago federal parliamentarian Tony Abbott calling for a reassessment of the grounds for divorce. To me this sounds like a re-run of his seeking to change the abortion laws when he was Minister for Health in the Howard Government.

I really wonder how serious Tony is in his endeavour to change no-fault divorce laws that have been in place since the passage of Lionel Murphy's Family Law Act of 1975.

It is true that divorces are running at an all-time high and that marriage, like other things in the community, is in chaos. It was predicted back in the 1970s, when divorce was made easier, that the numbers of divorces would sky-rocket. That prediction has proven to be correct.

However, changing the law to make it harder to get a divorce will not, in itself, stop the rush to the divorce courts. Divorces, like all the other social problems we are having, are a direct result of people's moral codes being smashed.

We have, as a nation and as a people, changed our basic philosophy to one which says, "If it feels good, do it" and "What is right and wrong is whatever someone cares to define it".

Unless Australian people as a whole turn back to some moral absolutes, then all the law changes in the parliaments will be of no use at all.

Jay Nauss,
Glen Aplin, Qld

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