April 22nd 2000

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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY: Will Telstra be fully privatised?

EDITORIAL: The "stolen generation“

CANBERRA OBSERVED: John Howard trapped in Aboriginal mine field

RURAL AFFAIRS: WA report highlights declining rural infrastructure

HEALTH FUNDS: Will genetic tests lead to discrimination?

ECONOMICS: Lessons from Malaysia's Mahathir

TAXATION: Families may suffer under GST

Why Liberal and ALP economic policies are indistinguishable

RUSSIA: What Vladimir Putin's election signifies



Globalisation: As capital goes global, unions go global

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS: How the "China factor" affects US relations with Asia

Bioethics: Move to harvest human embryo stem cells

INDUSTRY POLICY: Jobs for life: the Nucor approach

TAIWAN: Opposition wins presidential election

BOOKS: 'The Packaging of Australia: Politics and Culture Wars', by Gregory Melleuish

POLITICS: Straws in the Wind

TELEVISION: The Sopranos

Books promotion page


by News Weekly

News Weekly, April 22, 2000
Families first

Most British mothers would prefer to stay at home to care for their children if it were economically feasible, according to a poll commissioned by Mother and Baby magazine.

The poll questioned 2,000 mothers and pregnant women. A full 81% would give up work if they could, while only 6% indicated a preference for full-time work.

Stephanie Neuman, executive editor of Mother and Baby, a mother of two, stated, "It is staggeringly difficult for women to be at work full time and be a mother, especially when the second baby comes along.

Successive governments have failed to make it any easier for the working mother, but work pressures have increased tremendously while childcare options remain limited."

.Zenit World News Service, April 6

Marriage is safer

In 1998, people in the 25-44 years age group had the highest rate of suicide (23 suicides per 100,000 persons), followed by people in the 15-24 years age group (17 suicides per 100,000 persons).

The overall suicide rate in 1998 was the same as it was in 1921, at 14 suicides per 100,000 persons.

In 1998, people living in capital cities had the lowest rate of suicide (13 per 100,000 persons). In general, people living in other urban areas had the next lowest rate (15) and people living in rural areas had the highest (17).

In the period 1995-1997, using estimates based on the 1996 Census, married people (9 per 100,000 persons) were less likely to die from suicide than those who were never married (22), widowed (13) or divorced (26 per 100,000 persons).

Suicides Australia, 1921-1988

ABS Cat. No. 3309.0

Cannabis dangers

Senior British doctors have delivered a stark warning over the dangers of cannabis.

The drug can cause lung diseases, including cancer and bronchitis and is linked to "psychotic episodes" and schizophrenia, they said. Like alcoholics, regular users become slowly dependent and often do not realise they are hooked.

"The reputation of cannabis for being a safe drug is unjustified," said the team of eminent pyschiatrists and physicians.

Professor David London, one of the team who spent two years investigating the impact of illegal drugs, said: "I don't think anyone should go away with the idea that cannabis is safe. There is evidence that it isn't.

We know the effects of tobacco - I would hate it if in ten years' time there were a similar epidemic of disease from the effects of cannabis smoking".

The report was by physicians and psychiatrists from the two Royal Colleges.

UK Mail, April 4

Sexual abstinence attacked

French young people are abandoning sexual promiscuity and opting for abstinence until marriage, a trend seen negatively by sex educators and AIDS groups, according to a report in a Canadian newspaper.

Canada's National Post newspaper recently reported that the new commitment to chastity and marriage is expected to result in an "amazing 70%" increase in marriages in 2000.

Commentator Susan Martinuk noted that sex educators and AIDS groups are labeling the trend as evidence of gross ignorance about the "virtues" of safe sex - in other words, children are refraining from sexual relations because of unjustified fears over the ramifications of promiscuous behaviour. These organisations have convinced the government to launch a new sex education program to fix this "problem".

Martinuk added that, like the French, Planned Parenthood of Canada is committed to promoting "sex positivity" - teaching about sex within a context of "sexual pleasure" rather than married love and conception of children.

Among the strategies being devised by the "sex positivists" are a plan to replace the term STD (sexually transmitted disease) with the softer term, STI (sexually transmitted infection).

"Apparently the term 'disease' caused too much worry", wrote Martinuk. "Given this milieu, it isn't surprising that teen pregnancies in Canada increased 15.3 percent between 1987 and 1995 - even as sex programs and condom machines flooded the schools".

Catholic World News

No to homosexual marriage

When America decided which candidates would vie for the Presidential race on Super Tuesday in early March, it also cast another important vote.

California became the 31st American state to ban same-sex marriages.

In a state which has America's largest homosexual population, Californians voted for the measure by an impressive 61 per cent.

Proposition 22 was a simple amendment to the state constitution which read: "Only marriages between a man and a woman is recognized or valid in California".

Homosexual activists raised $5.5 million to defeat the bill. They organized fund raisers, marches, concerts and house parties in an attempt to defeat Proposition 22. An estimated 100,000 "Yes on 22" lawn signs were uprooted and destroyed by anti-22 activists.

Yet it passed with a healthy majority, indicating as one senator put it, "California is not ready for a marriage between a man and a man".

World magazine, March 18

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