The Lobbying Bill being debated at Westminster will do nothing to expose corporate lobbying, says Tamasin Cave, a director of SpinWatch, author, and leader of the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency coalition. If we are going to diminish corporate commercial influence in government, we need to understand its tactics better and call them out.
The Robin Hood Tax campaign is facing a tough opponent – not just from the usual source of the financial sector and their allies, but from legislation currently going through the House of Lords, says Richard Carr, a Policy Adviser at Stamp Out Poverty. He highlights why the Lobbying Bill matters to anti-poverty campaigners, among many others.
In recognising the human endurance, perseverance, vision, humility, lack of bitterness and political ability that characterised Nelson Mandela, analyst and Ekklesia associate Dr Harry Hagopian looks at the response of Palestinians and others from the Middle East and North Africa region to his passing. There are uncomfortable truths to be faced in all this, he suggests.
History was made at the UN climate talks last week – not by the achievement of a breakthrough in negotiations, unfortunately, but by the unprecedented walk-out by 800 civil society groups and trade unions, says Caroline Lucas MP, assessing what has happened and what needs to happen next.
What worries many powers today are Iranian encroaching attempts to enrich high-grade uranium. Has the deal that has just been done alleviated those fears, or merely been a piece of window dressing? Regional commentator and Ekklesia associate Dr Harry Hagopian examines the complexities, political dynamics and regional (global, indeed) implications of the Iran nuclear deal.
Forget what self-appointed experts might tell you or what political bureaucrats might suggest either. Just cast a quick look for yourself at the Middle East North Africa (MENA) map today, says regional expert and Ekklesia associate Dr Harry Hagopian. The inescapable conclusion – the revealing truth, if you will – is that things are not going well at all. In fact, things are quite messy – and perilously so too.
Many who support the idea of an independent Scotland but would prefer not to be described as nationalists are motivated by the prospect of greater responsibility, explains Alison Johnstone, MSP for Lothian and a member of the Scottish Parliament’s economy committee. Here she sets out a vision of a just, sustainable future with a particular emphasis on the vital role of women, children, welfare and work. Among other things, she draws upon examples and models from the Nordic countries.
On 9 July 2011, South Sudan became the world’s newest nation. Today it is estimated to be home to more than 11 million people and is geographically one of the larger countries in Africa. The Sudanese churches have been part of the struggle and aspiration for peace and security, reports J. Ayana McCalman. But in a land rich in natural resources, there is also a need to address the humanitarian situation and significant human needs.
The experiences and voices of a centre run by the Presbyterian Church in South Korea provide important lessons concerning the multiple insecurities felt by 'migrant wives', as the women are called, in a fast moving society. Naveen Qayyum, from Pakistan, reflects on the issues raised about migration and the experience of women at the World Council of Churches 10th Assembly meeting in Busan.
The World Council of Churches 10th Assembly being held in Busan, Republic of Korea (30 October - 8 November 2013), is continuing the 60-year WCC campaign for advocacy of gender justice. The Council, in partnership with Korean women, has designed an encounter space – Umulga SHe-Space in the Madang exhibition hall at the WCC assembly. J. Ayana McCalman introduces the concept and the fresh space it opens up for conversation and action around gender justice.
When children are murdered, let us call each child by name and name what has been done to her in the name of some cause she will never know or understand. To call a murdered child a suicide bomber is to violate her all over again, says Professor Tina Beattie, in the wake of Boko Haram's deadliest yet attacks in northern Nigeria.
Religious fidelity and free speech can learn the art of coexistence despite the acerbic challenges that have flowed from the terrible Paris shootings and the arguments about Charlie Hebdo magazine, says Ekklesia associate and Middle East analyst Dr Harry Hagopian. The much harder – and harsher – question is whether we as followers of a religion or as advocates of free speech can coexist too?