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Farewell and thank you, Brian Harradine

Brian HarradineThere was one brief shining moment in the 90s when independent Senator Brian Harradine held the balance of power in Canberra and independent Gladstone MP Liz Cunningham held the balance of power in Queensland. Christian priorities carried more weight at that time, given the incorruptible independence of these two fine people. Both were there because of a vocation to seek the common good as the expression of Christian charity “even over the perilous abyss of public affairs” (as BA Santamaria once put it).

Listen to an interview today with two people who knew Senator Harradine well: Fr Frank Brennan SJ (one of his counsellors on the Wik decision) and Melinda Tankard-Reist (his long-time staffer) – audio HERE.

Check out the Iona Institute… and not just for the Irish accents.

Updating Blog roll links – and the Iona Institute gets a guernsey. In part for this excellent video speaking sanity on the marriage debate, in part for the music of the Irish voices.

In part, out of fond memories of travels to Iona in 1985 with the Scottish cousins Mary & Jane Moffat; reading Dr Johnson’s account of his ‘Journey to the western isles of Scotland‘ as a travel guide. And a bleak day at the youth hostel at Uig on the Isle of Skye hearing snatches from Faure’s Requiem on Mary’s walkman. As Dr Johnson put it:

Take a ride on our new Bypass!

And now some good news for visiting friends who have had to grind through the interminable road works on the current Range Crossing: a $Billion-plus cheque signed today by the Federal Treasurer for the long-awaited Second Range Crossing.

This is testament to the bulldog qualities of three comrades of mine, our local MPs – Federally, Ian Macfarlane and locally, Trevor Watts and John McVeigh – gnashing on this bone and not letting go.

Trevor has this neat simulation of the Bypass journey at his website, and for those who know this region, it is well worth a look:

The Vee Gees live at the Toowoomba Carnival!

Bach double, slow movement: Johnny & Robert – Mum on piano.

On the principle that a father is not meant to enthuse in public about ‘the kids’, I have resisted posting any music video for years – but I will bend my rule for this one. This was today, Jane and the boys at the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers midday concert at the beautiful St Luke’s Anglican Church.  In case I get hit by a falling rock this movement of the Bach double violin concerto is what I want at my funeral… Bach’s music gets as close as art can get to the mind and heart of God.

Toowoomba & Lockyer Tsunami

Thank you to all the friends here and overseas enquiring about our wellbeing. No harm has come to our home or my surgery – but so many unspeakably sad stories from friends of friends.

Just a block down the street from work is the low point of the town ‘valley’, and the mass of water on Monday 10th came more like a wave than a rising flood. I waited at the scene of this fast-water rescue because there was no ambulance able to reach the scene – not that I could have done much unless one of the men had washed up at my feet needing CPR.

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Some Videos
STEM CELLS & EMBRYOS: ABC LATELINE AUGUST 2002 SURROGACY: KERRI-ANNE SHOW JANUARY 2011 SBS INSIGHT ON GAY MARRIAGE 2013 (see post Aug 15 2013) EUTHANASIA & THE 'DUTY TO DIE', 2014 THE HARMS OF HOMOSEXUAL 'MARRIAGE', 2014 ABORTION - 'the silent innocence of the unborn', 2014 SAME-SEX MARRIAGE: SYDNEY UNI 2012 (start 2min20) SURROGACY BILL QLD JANUARY 2010
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