The Manning Community News

Sharing community news and views

Beyond the ValleyHealth

CORONA VIRUSES AND THE DEMISE OF CITIES

In 2007, the United Nations declared that over 50% of the world’s population now lived in cities.  This followed many centuries of rural to urban migration driven mainly by displaced agricultural workers seeking employment in industrial and other urban sectors.  In the past decade or so a reversal of this trend has started in wealthy […]

Beyond the ValleyPolitics

SCOTT MORRISON’S 21ST CENTURY BOOK BURNING

Judith White Prime Minister Morrison’s Coalition Government has committed $270 billion to militarisation, while universities, public broadcasters and the arts face devastation.  The implications for Australian society are grim. In the digital age, it doesn’t take the physical burning of books for anti-intellectualism to flourish. It just takes the systematic undermining of the public institutions […]

Beyond the ValleyPeople

IRENE HAS THE BLUES AND LOVES IT!

Former TwoBob radio presenter, Irene Barret who lived in Tinonee at the time, sends us an update from Cairns. As Buddy Guy’s latest album title says ‘The Blues Is Alive and Well’.  I can tell you that it is so. Unless you’re a blues tragic like myself, you’re probably still thinking along the lines of  […]

Beyond the Valley

OFF THE BEACH

Robert Milliken sees parallels between the 2020 pandemic and another Australian story 60 years earlier. We’ve been here before. The empty city streets, the anxiety and fear, the wondering how and when it will all end. The first time, it was a fantasy that seemed all too real. This time, it’s just real. In late […]

Beyond the ValleyHealth

TWO PANICS FOR THE PRICE OF ONE.

“Corona virus caused the economic downturn”. Did it? No. What caused the downturn was the reaction of governments around the globe, or at least those of First World economies and countries. Quite what Laos, Liberia, Chad, and Mali are doing about the virus doesn’t make it into the media, so no-one knows.  They have hardly […]

Beyond the Valley

AUSTRALIA’S MEDIA MAELSTROM

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair…” so wrote Charles Dickens; the opening lines of A Tale of Two Cities. Dickens might have said the same about the Australian media today, as forces large than itself batter it.  Key among those forces is three viruses: Google, Facebook

Beyond the Valley

THE MAGIC OF CARPETS

Afghanistan is many things to many people but to me two things define it. Islam and the horse. As a young merchant, among my first purchases were a print of the Islamic mystical horse Buraq, and a Turkoman saddle cover. The energetic equestrian sport of Buzkashi is played in sight of mountains that proclaim loudly, […]

Beyond the ValleyLocalPeople

WE’RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER!

These are difficult times. It brings out the best, and the worst, in many of us. It is a time of confusion, scare-mongering, panic buying, false information, but also helping neighbours, keeping family close, showing supportive friendships online, long distance family nurturing.  The only way through this is to use our common sense, do what […]

Beyond the Valleytravel

How I fell for a career in Persian Carpets

I asked my wife about doing a piece for the Manning Community News – ‘Where do I start?’  She suggested the stories of my search for business in Herat, Western Afghanistan when I was young and inexperienced. So  . . . It was a time of relative peace before the USSR and USA fought over […]

Beyond the ValleyBooks

Jaipur Literature Festival21feb20

The Jaipur Literature Festival seems an unusual travel objective. For a start, why go to India anyway? Such a noisy dirty place, holy cows wandering amongst unrelenting smoky traffic with gaping holes in the footpath. Some visitors can even get a bit of tummy trouble, including this writer.  As the largest literature festival on the […]

Beyond the Valley

SEX SELLS, BUT SO DOES CHAOS. WHY BAD NEWS IS

How long since you read a headline that said, implicitly, ‘All is right with the world’? Not since Professor Pangloss got a gig as tutor to Candide in Voltaire’s 1759 novel, I’ll warrant.  Of course, if you were holed up in an inside cabin on the virus-laden Diamond Princess, ‘Rescue for Australians trapped on cruise […]

Beyond the ValleyEnvironment

THE DELIBERATE KILLING OF KOALAS

Why would anybody want to cruelly kill Koalas on a private landholding? Cape Bridgewater, is a scenic pristine wilderness at the end of the Great Ocean Road, in Victoria, near to the South Australian border, one of the highlights for locals and tourists on their vacation trips into “real” Australia.  Cape Bridgewater and Bridgewater Bay, […]