The Old Year Ends – a look back at 2015

December 28, 2015 at 2:00 am | Posted in Australia, Making History, Migration, Politics, Psychology, Religion, Social Responsibility, Society, War and Conflict | 8 Comments
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2015 Behind the News ABC

Apart from my lovely family and friends, I must admit that I have not enjoyed 2015. Not on the state, national or international level. There hasn’t been very much to enjoy in the world of politics, religion, economics, international relations, terrorism, whatever.

With one of the defining images of the year being the body of a little refugee boy washed up on a beach, how could it have been a good year for anyone who looks beyond their own safe little bubble? I for one wouldn’t mind having another go at it to see if we could somehow change how it all went. Failing that, is the hope that last year was as bad as it will get.

TOPSHOTS Kurdish Syrian girls are pictur

Children among the destruction in Syria

I started to write a list of the nasties that happened through the year:

  • the terrorism in the name of religion that is not a religion;

  • the racism and violence in many countries across the globe;

  • the lack of support in many instances for the millions of people displaced by war;

  • the ineptitude, idiocy or corruption in too many governments in too many countries;

  • the failure to address global warming on a global scale;

  • the brain-dead far right-wingers who would prefer the whole world to collapse rather than help those less fortunate than themselves;

  • the destruction of our valuable, even precious, environments and wildlife, to feed the greed of multi-national corporations;

  • the extremes of weather – excessive cold and heat, floods, droughts, huge wildfires, hurricanes, typhoons and tornadoes, the melting of the polar ice caps;

  • the extreme polarisation in politics, race and religion, and the fear-mongering among our so-called leaders;

  • the overwhelming power of the arms industry, the far right press, and corporations in deciding national and international government policy.

Need I go on?

Of course there were good things happening too:

  • the rise of people power through social media, demonstrations and actions to show their displeasure at where the world is heading;

  • the rise of a pope who, against those Catholic extremists who would prevent him, speaks for the people, the environment, and the cessation of war;

  • the countries like Germany who have taken in tens of thousands of refugees;

  • the individuals who stand up for right when they see wrong.


We need the good so much, but it is demonstrated by individuals and small groups in small and seemingly insignificant actions and interactions, whereas the bad is overwhelming in its ability to create a sense of despair, depression and hopelessness.

However, I must concentrate on those small things and the ordinary people like me who do them, and hope they will add up to more than the bad stuff and overcome it. I must do what I can for my own sanity, but even more for the sake of my grandchildren. I don’t want them to live in the kind of hateful world that seems to be all too possible right now.

I must cling to the hope that springs eternal from the human heart. If it didn’t, I would end it now. So I hope with all my heart that, through good people standing up to corruption and violence, hatred and destruction, at least some of the horrendous problems we’ve had in 2015 will get better in 2016.

(c) Linda Visman




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  1. I agree with you – 2015 was rough on many fronts, and some good news is in order to balance it. I came across this newspaper in a coffee shop some years back on a trip to California. It only has good news, and is called “Sonoma County’s Upbeat Times”.

    • What a good idea! Yes, I think we need a lot more good news stories, Lavinia, so we can balance some of the constant negative stories we are bombarded with.

  2. Pleased you came around to the good out there Linda otherwise it would indeed have been a grim year. I tend to take the feminist tack of the personal being the political and apply that to my small world of influence: do what I can where I am with what I have. I no longer watch the news because most good news is not reported. 2015 was a little easier than ’14 and I’m believing for an easier 2016, hope yours is too 🙂 Linda

    • If I didn’t try to see the good as well, I’d be dead & gone, I think!
      I rarely watch the news either, but it filters in through other avenues, and I feel like I have to take notice and help those who are doing some good out there.
      Dad liked the saying you mention – do all the good you can to whoever you can, however you can, wherever you can. I try to do that but get side-tracked by the depression of the ugly side of the world.
      Yes, Linda, let’s hope 2016 has a lot more positive things to offer. Happy new year to you & the MOTH. 🙂

  3. I have been very happy to share 2015 with you Linda. You give your friends support and love and I’m thankful for the connection we have, Vix

    • Thanks Vicki. It is great to have friends to help me stay on top of things. I am always grateful for friends like you. All the very best for 2016, Vick! See you next year. 🙂

  4. This topic has been on my mind the last several days due to a family tragedy—what to do with the truly terrible things that happen all around us? Like you, the only thing I can do is to look for where the good is, not where it isn’t. Little things, but also the 20,000 people who ran the St. Jude marathon to end childhood cancer, a massive wave of humanity in motion to help others, which is working—the child I ran for wouldn’t have been alive not that many years ago. It made me want to do more mass good events in 2016. I hope as the calendar turns, your year, and the world’s, will indeed get better.

    • Thank you for commenting, Ellen. It is sometimes hard to cope with the tragedies, especially when they seem to pile one on top of another.
      Dad always advised us to do what it says in the old song – accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative. I try to do that, but sometimes it takes too much out of me.
      Wishing you a year ahead filled with many positives to accentuate and not too many negatives to eliminate. 🙂

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