Tag: Southport

Good question. It should come as no surprise to hear that many lawyers – and business people in general – are already accessing some level of AI as a useful tool to help them maximise their efficiency and effectiveness in delivering services to their clientele. But, at the moment, we’re all just taking our first […]

Some years ago I attended a breakfast at the Sheraton Hotel on the Gold Coast, at which the then highly-respected - and now much-maligned - Victoria Cross recipient, Ben Roberts-Smith, was the featured guest speaker. In his riveting address, Mr Roberts-Smith enthralled his audience with a detailed account of his service with the Australian Defence Force in Afghanistan, including the extraordinary events that saw him bestowed Australia’s highest award for valour and devotion to duty in the theatre of war. As anyone who has heard the war hero’s harrowing tale of combat and courage under fire could tell you, it’s a hell of a yarn. And boy, did he tell it well.
We finally have vaccines for COVID-19. Australia is set to roll out its first batch, to the priority population - aged and disability care residents and workers, front line health workers and quarantine and border staff – in the coming weeks. The question is, how do we make sure they take it?
The familiar legal adage "Hard cases make bad law" dates back at least as far as the early 1800s. It points to the danger of reacting to an extreme case by making a general, harsh and inflexible law to cover all cases. Wisdom dictates, the adage suggests, that laws are better drafted to target the average - and therefore more common – cases, rather than the extreme ones.
Between 1905 and 1970, generations of First Nations children were forcibly removed from their families, under a policy of so-called ‘protection.’ The 1995 Bringing Them Home report estimated that between ten and thirty-three per cent of all First Nations children were taken from their loved ones.
Confidential communications between lawyers and their clients are sacrosanct. They are subject to legal professional privilege, which means they cannot be disclosed by anyone – including the lawyer – to anyone else - including the government, the courts, the police, or anyone at all - without the client’s express authorisation. That principle has been around for about 500 years, and remains a fundamental tenant of our legal system. But it has, at times, been sorely tested.
This week, as we paused to remember, on the 102nd Remembrance Day, those who fell in foreign fields to defend and preserve our liberties, hopefully we also reflected on a great deal more.
Is it just me, or are we maybe making things just a little more complicated than they really need to be? In the context of litigation, lawyers sometimes need to access and disclose copies of their clients’ financial and other records held by various government bodies. That means getting the client’s written authority to access their records, and then getting in touch with the relevant government institution. That should be pretty simple, right?
The Bible tells us that the sinner Saul was struck down on the road to Damascus. In a sudden flash of light from heaven, he experienced a divine, life-changing epiphany. For most of us the getting of wisdom follows an infinitely more gradual and circuitous path.
This weekend’s Castrol Gold Coast 600 is yet another reminder that some people just seem to be a whole lot happier when someone gets their gear off.
The circus is in town.  A crazy new phenomenon is sweeping across the US, Europe, and now even Australia. It trumps the Trump, it’s scarier than Ruddy’s run at the UN, and it’s so weird it even out-weirds planking, if that’s actually possible. Scary killer clowns have taken to lurking on our streets, hiding in the shadows and around corners, waiting to maniacally leap out and scare the living socks off us.
With the currently almost endemic proliferation in Australian society of audio- and video-recording mobile phones, and the recent announcement by CASA of the relaxation of laws and regulations around the use of surveillance drones in Australian airspace, perhaps it’s time we all sat down to have a good hard rethink about some of our rules around privacy in this country.