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Liberalism vs Conservatism – Which Offers the Better Model for Society?

Season 1, Ep. 9

In this episode, we explore the two great movements of the political right - liberalism of the right and conservatism. They are such different political philosophies, yet they share the same bed, uneasily much of the time, in right wing politics. 


 

By liberalism, we mean the political philosophy that champions individual rights and freedoms, private property and equality before the law. It’s linked with the rise of democracies and of capitalism, replacing social structures defined by hereditary, class and gender privilege as well as the divine right of kings.  


 

Today, liberalism crosses over the left and the right of politics in most western countries. The left leaning or progressive liberals focus most heavily on the equality side, ensuring that people are not just treated equally under law but that the race itself is fair. 


 

Liberalism of the right however, the one we’re focused on in this episode, is much more concerned with individual freedoms, individual responsibility, property rights and equality before the law. It wants to ensure that, wherever you start the journey of life, you are given the opportunity to succeed based on your merit and ambition. 


 

The other great movement of the right, conservatism, is in one sense a stance, an attitude that is suspicious of change and asks us to proceed with caution, knowing that social order is easy to break and hard to build. But it’s also a political philosophy that values traditions, customs, a common moral code, authority, loyalty to community and country, focusing on duties rather than rights. 


 

The purpose of this episode is to explore these two great movements of the political right, which clash and crash into each other, competing for dominance, as we look at which one offers the best model for society. 


 

Our two guests are Tim Wilson MP and Gray Connolly. 


 

Tim Wilson is a Federal Liberal Member in the Australian Parliament and is Chair of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics. He was formerly Australia’s Human Rights Commissioner. Tim is a strong advocate for protecting free speech and freedom of religion. His book The New Social Contract; Renewing the Liberal Vision for Australia, passionately champions liberal ideals of the right. 



Gray Connolly is a Barrister, lectures in Australian Constitutional Law, and has advised the Australian Government on national security matters. He is a Lieutenant Commander in the Royal Australian Navy and has served on deployments all over the world.  Gray is a passionate conservative and a frequent conservative panellist for ABC radio and television, as well as publishing articles in various  journals.


 

Both Tim and Gray sit firmly within the right rather than the Left of politics. But they advocate for very different models of society. Tim has said that conservatism offers little or nothing to young Australians. And Gray has dismissed liberalism as naïve. But they have great respect for each other in this fascinating conversation. 

 


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You can be part of the discussion @PofCharity on Twitter, @PrincipleofCharity on Facebook and @PrincipleofCharityPodcast on Instagram.

 

Your hosts are Lloyd Vogelman and Emile Sherman.

 

Find Lloyd @LloydVogelman on Linked in

 

Find Emile @EmileSherman on Linked In and Twitter.

 

This Podcast is Produced by Jonah Primo and Bronwen Reid

 

Find Jonah @JonahPrimomusic on Instagram. 

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5/23/2022

Meditation vs Psychoanalysis: Which Offers the Best Path to Reduce Suffering?

Season 1, Ep. 13
What do we do with our mental suffering? From everyday anger and disappointments, to life defining moments of grief and pain, we are all dealing with our emotional life, much of which can be challenging. In this episode we are going to explore two great models - meditation and psychoanalysis, to look at what they have in common and how they differ.Meditation, particularly mindfulness meditation, has made its way into the west and permeates so much of society these days. The catchphrase mindfulness has become a mantra for how we’re meant to approach everything, from how we eat to what we wear. But meditation itself asks us to do what many find unbearable. To simply sit and to become aware of our thoughts and feelings. In creating this little gap, their grip on us loosens.This is generally where meditation stops. At a calmer, more peaceful, more ‘in control’ place. But Buddhism, the spiritual tradition we most associate with meditation, sees meditation as a key stone on the path to no less than spiritual enlightenment itself. A journey into the dissolution of the ego (in a traditional sense) and a return to a pure state of awareness.Psychoanalysis comes from an entirely different tradition but strangely shares much overlap with meditation. It too asks us to stop, to listen to our inner voices, and to create a gap of analysis between ourselves and the forces that move and shake us so vigorously. It sees humans as a bundle of contradictory impulses with much of our deep self hidden within our subconscious, out of view of our conscious minds. It sees our suffering coming from adaptations we had to form in childhood which kept us safe and still keep us safe from painful feelings. We can see them in our patterns of behavior and we can only break their spell if we’re prepared to open ourselves up to the repressed and often painful moments that we hide from. All of this plays out in the very live dynamic between patient and the analyst in the room. Psychoanalysis doesn’t promise happiness. It recognises that suffering is a part of life, and it helps us to a life of greater depth, meaning and growth.Both meditation and psychoanalysis ask us to sit with ourselves, often uncomfortably. But where meditation turns us finally towards the pure space of awareness, psychoanalysis sees healing in unravelling the knot of our selves.To help us through this, we have Buddhist nun and teacher Samaneri Jayasara and psychoanalyst Sonia Wechsler.Samaneri Jayasara has studied and practised Buddhism and meditation for over 35 years.She has a PhD and Master’s Degree in education, focusing on comparative spiritual traditions, Buddhism and psychotherapy. She has taught at secondary, undergraduate and post-graduate levels in psychology and counselling, and also worked as a trainer in mental health and crisis intervention in the welfare sector.Sonia Wechsler is a Clinical Psychologist and Child, Adolescent and Adult Psychoanalyst with over 20 years of clinical experience. She completed her psychoanalytic training with the Sydney Institute of Psychoanalysis and has presented clinical papers on psychoanalysis at national and international conferences. She consults to a number of non-government organisations and Headspace.You can be part of the discussion @PofCharity on Twitter, @PrincipleofCharity on Facebook and @PrincipleofCharityPodcast on Instagram.Your hosts are Lloyd Vogelman and Emile Sherman.Produced by Jonah Primo and Bronwen Reid.
5/9/2022

Do Criminals Deserve to be Punished?

Season 1, Ep. 13
When someone breaks the law, most of us have an instinct that they should be punished. In fact, that they deserve to be punished. At the base of this is a sense that we are morally responsible for our actions and we should get our ‘just deserts’ if we make bad choices.This assumption is deeply encoded in the criminal law itself. Sure, there are other reasons we may want to put criminals behind bars – keeping society safe, deterring others from committing the same crime, even rehabilitation. But deep down lies the instinct of ‘retribution’, that a person who has done wrong just deserves to be punished for their wrongdoing.But why do they? Well, at the root of it is our cherished belief that we have ‘free will’. That we make our decisions freely and that we can choose to act differently.Our guest Gregg Carusso rejects this idea entirely. He sees free will as an illusion. He asks us to consider a justice system built entirely without retributive justice, where no one is imprisoned because they ‘deserve’ to be punished. Gregg is Professor of Philosophy, State University New York, Corning, Honorary Professor at Sydney’s Macquarie University and Co Director of the Justice Without Retribution Network at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.In his latest book Just Deserts, Gregg debates with fellow philosopher Daniel C Dennett moral responsibility, punishment and free will.Our other guest, Katrina Sifferd believes the justice system can and should be grounded in a concept of free will. She shares some concerns with Gregg that the system is at times overly punitive, but believes that we have the capacity to act as morally responsible individuals. In fact, in her book ‘Responsible Brains’, she looks at the neuroscience at work in our brain, and sees our ‘executive function’ as the seat of our moral responsibility. Katrina is professor and chair of philosophy at Chicago’s Elmurst University and co editor in chief of the publication Neuro-ethics. Katrina earned a Juris Doctorate and has worked on criminal justice projects for the US National Institute of Justice. She is the author of numerous articles and book chapters on responsibility, criminal law and punishment.You can be part of the discussion @PofCharity on Twitter, @PrincipleofCharity on Facebook and @PrincipleofCharityPodcast on Instagram.Your hosts are Lloyd Vogelman and Emile Sherman.Find Lloyd @LloydVogelman on Linked inFind Emile @EmileSherman on Linked In and Twitter.This Podcast is Produced by Jonah Primo and Bronwen ReidFind Jonah @JonahPrimomusic on Instagram.
4/25/2022

Is More Immigration a Good or Bad Thing?

Season 1, Ep. 11
Immigration is such a hot topic. Our borders are, in a sense, our collective skin and the question of who we let in seems to activate our primal instincts. Who comes in can feel and can at times be dangerous.Yet we want new ideas, new brain and brawn-power to fuel our country. A larger population can bring greater economic growth and prosperity. And with fertility rates below replacement level in most wealthy countries, our population will decline without immigration.There’s our sense of identity at stake as well – who are we as a nation? Are we defined through an ethnicity or particularly culture, as many nations today still are? Or do we define ourselves through our heritage, our stories, our values?The lens we bring to immigration often colours our reading of the facts. Do immigrants ‘take our jobs’ or do they add to the pool of consumers and producers that make us bigger and more interesting? Are immigrants more likely to turn to crime, or are they in fact harder working than the local population? Will they join and grow the story of our nation, or will they remain foreign?But most importantly for this episode, how many immigrants can our natural environment and our infrastructure bear before the burden outweighs the benefits for the local population? And are these hard limits or can we invent and invest our way out of them?To help us through this, we have George Megalogenis and Bob Carr.George Megalogenis is a strong advocate for greater immigration. He’s a journalist and author of five books including The Australian Moment which won the 2013 Prime Minister's Literary Award for Non-fiction and formed the basis for his three-part ABC documentary series Making Australia Great. George’s other books include Faultlines, The Longest Decade, Australia’s Second Chance, The Football Solution and Balancing Act.Former Foreign Affairs Minister and the longest continuously serving Premier of New South Wales, Bob Carr, is an author of multiple books and is currently Professor of Climate and Business at the Institute of Sustainable Futures at the University of Technology Sydney. He is outspoken in his concerns for the environmental limits of immigrationMonday, 9 August 20216:30 PM~~You can be part of the discussion @PofCharity on Twitter, @PrincipleofCharity on Facebook and @PrincipleofCharityPodcast on Instagram.Your hosts are Lloyd Vogelman and Emile Sherman.Find Lloyd @LloydVogelman on Linked inFind Emile @EmileSherman on Linked In and Twitter.This Podcast is Produced by Jonah Primo and Bronwen ReidFind Jonah @JonahPrimomusic on Instagram.