The Minefield - Separate stories podcast

The Minefield - Separate stories podcast


The whole program cut up into separate stories - allows easy skipping from one story to the next so you can pick and choose.


Citizenship and its discontents: Do “Australian values” have any value?  

Does the language of ‘values’ in our time necessarily bear the taint of nationalist or cultural exclusivity?

The appeal of authoritarianism: Has democracy had its day?  

What is fuelling the widespread appeal of authoritarianism?

Is there a moral response to Assad’s brutality in Syria?  

Is there a moral response to the chaos and carnage in Syria?

Is Mike Pence’s ‘rule’ a matter of prudence or just prurience?  

Are current forms of sex education enough to promote healthy, mutually ennobling relationships?

Can images tell the truth in a social-media saturated age?  

Images have become a kind of modern vernacular. So what moral obligations are incumbent upon producers and consumers of the news media in an image-saturated age?

Public funding of the arts: What is gained? What is lost?  

Does art have a value to society that renders it eligible for public funding?

Can nationalism be redeemed?  

Can nationalism be redeemed? Or it is just going to be a standoff between liberal cosmopolitanism and atavistic nativism from here on in?

What chance does political honesty have in a post-truth age?  

Is the arrival of a post-truth age synonymous with the liquidation of the bank of public faith?

Penalty rates: Why should Sunday stay special?  

Is very idea of ‘weekends’ an illegitimate leftover from a different age?

Good food? The ethics of what we eat  

If the food we consume is not produced ethically, are we implicated in the immorality of the production process?

Can ‘conservative’ politics be saved?  

Can a just and peaceable political order endure without the taming presence of the conservative disposition?

Do our ethical convictions need to go on holiday when we do?  

Is tourism just the latest manifestation of the colonial impulse?

Is Trump’s immigration ban a show of strength ... or weakness?  

During his first week in office, U.S. President Donald Trump has effectively governed by Executive Order. He is thus confirming his self-styled reputation as – and fulfilling his pledge to be – a strong leader who can ‘get things done’.

Is ‘Australia’ morally justifiable?  

Is the idea of ‘Australia’ – with its national fetishes of food, football and the ‘fair go’ - generous enough and inoffensive enough to include anyone?

Is the age of positive politics over?  

In modern democracies, the people are more interested in registering their discontent than giving politicians a clear mandate. Are we now living in an age of negative politics?

Self-immolation: why is it happening and what is the moral response?  

From Vietnam to Tunisia and Tibet, self-immolation has been used as a means of political protest. Now it is also occurring at the Nauru detention centre.  But will the shock of these events translate to action?  Or have we simply accepted the human collateral of Australia’s official policy of deterrence?

Has free speech had its day?  

The idea that the public 'contest of ideas’ kills off the worst, and allows the best, the most rational, to survive is not working, so is public debate doing more harm than good?

Can we only venerate Muhammad Ali by forgetting who he was?  

Over the past three decades, Muhammad Ali has been sanitized and rendered acceptable for wider public consumption.

Is it possible to be an ethical consumer?  

The 2013 collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factories in Bangladesh revealed the human cost behind the cheap clothes we buy. But what explains the disparity between ethical convictions and consumer choice?

What are the media’s moral responsibilities in an age of ‘fake news’?  

Is the media having a corrosive effect on our democratic culture?

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