Week in Review 2

Last week of Winter and there appears to be some bug floating around sapping everyone's energy. Quite a few people away this week. I've felt barely awake. Talked to a few more people about further study and visited the websites of other astrophysics departments in Australian universities. I liked the format of the Monash University Astrophysics Group as staff cleary summarised their research interests with enough technical language that a potential student can search for further references. They also listed possible PhD projects and linked to publications lists. I need to encourage the ATNF to do the same.

Refugees

Yet again, the Howard government is displaying a complete lack of empathy for anyone who does not conform to their standards. It is difficult to know the truth behind the refugees situation on the Tampa. Is there some overwhelming reason that they should be kept on the ship. Is this a warning to other potential illegal migrants, or more likely, an action to appease a redneck electorate.

I think many people have confused the muslim kids involved in the rape of caucasian girls in Sydney, with the muslim refugees from Afghanistan and Pakistan on the Tampa. Hopefully there is no connection whatsoever. These refugees usually come from very poor regions with greatly restricted freedoms. Do they come here to participate in our comparatively freer society? Did they threaten the Tampa's crew. Do they believe violence is a valid solution to problems? What would any of us do if we were in their situation?

We are a nation built on immigrants from around the globe. Each year we turn away many who genuinely love the country and wish to contribute to its society, yet let in others who see our nation as a source of personal wealth. Should we deny what we have to others? Perhaps we should work harder to help the lives of others overseas.

I don't know the answers, except that evilness and guilt should not be automatically assumed, as they seem to be by our government. This is the same government that assumes that all recipients of welfare are dole bludgers by default. Our Prime Ministers claims sporting glory for the nation, but cannot share the shame for past treatments of aboriginals. A leader who tried to insert christianity into our constitution. I'm tired of this intolerance, absolutely sick of it. If only the alternatives were better...

When I find out any answers, I'll let you know.