Letters to the editor Saturday April 7 2018


UNLOADING: Reader Tony Emanuel argues the state government’s secret fee on Newcastle container movements presents the city with “a Boston Tea Party moment”.

AS THE editorial rightly points out (“The Port of Newcastle and competition laws”, Editorial 5/4)government has no right to impede our growth as a city by derailing the possibility of a container terminal on the old BHP site.

Because of the difficulties in using this toxic site for many other ventures and the relatively simple construction of a container terminal that is compatible with its restoration, it is a location fit for purpose.

Whatever your views on climate change and renewable energy, everyone understands that the use of coal is finite.

The container terminal proposalis a development that should have been activated 20 yearsago.

In my eyes the state government’s intervention to handicap such an enterprise could only be considered a treacherous betrayal of the people of the Hunter.

I think their recent dismantling of public transport infrastructure andtheir ongoing delaying tactics or outright refusal to support any project that might compete with anything in Sydneyreveal the presence of institutionalised sabotage.

If you ask me, this is a Boston Tea Party moment where our local representatives at all levels should be gathering support to separate ourselves from this state.

Tony Emanuel,HunterviewPUT YOUR STAMP ON ITI REFER to the article on Post in Wednesday’s business section of the Newcastle Herald (“ Post not delivering on service”, Herald 4/4).

Is it any wonder that the n postal system is in disarray?The Victorian government (and other state and federal departments and agencies) use private couriers. The main courier is the document exchange operated by Toll Holdings.

Guess who owns Toll? Japan Post! Who owns Japan Post? The Japanese government!

I have absolutely nothing against Japan Post or the Japanese governmentbut what are our federal and state representatives doing to ensure that our n postal service is fully utilised by all state and federal government departments and agencies?

This would result in increasing volumes and encouragea cost-effective operation for the benefit of the n people.

Warrick Strang,KrambachA WIN FOR EDUCATIONON APRIL25,we will again commemorate Anzac Day, when we remember the n soldiers landing at Gallipoli and the deaths of so many of them – such a terrible defeat.

100 years ago this year, on April 25, 1918, n soldiers took back the French village of Villers-Bretonneux from the Germans. The Germans continued to be pushed back towards the Hindenburg Line, so that by late September the Germans asked to end the fighting.

This brought World War Ito an end. When soldiers were rebuilding the village school there, children from Victoria raised funds for a new school which is called Victoria Ecole.There is an n war museum upstairs, and on the front of the outside of the schoolare the words “Do not forget ”. The village is twinned with Robinvale in Victoria.

Now every Anzac Day, a dawn service is held in their beautifully built war memorial and war cemetery.

How many ns have heard of this wonderful victory of our n soldiers, which is still remembered in France 100 years later?Are our school children taught about this? Lest we forget.

Suzanne Martin,NewcastleWHO PAYS THE PENALTYTHIS past Easter break, we visited our local cafes in Newcastle. We found it interesting that the recent reduction in penalty rates for hospitality andretail workers has not been reflected in a lowering of the public holiday surcharge.Some cafes we visited it had increased up to 20 per cent.So much for trickle-downeconomics.

Sue Michaelson,MerewetherCHOPS AND CHANGESKEOLIS Downer boasts that patronage on the former 363 bus has increased by 70 per centwith the new route 13 bus. But 363 and six other buses used to go down Tudor Street into the city – now it is only route 13, andothers seem to dump us at the Interchange.

David Rose,HamiltonTHE START OF A GREAT THINGCONGRATULATIONSto Channel Sevenfor its magnificent presentation of the opening ceremony of the 21st Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.

Who couldbe unmoved by the colourful appearance of the competitors?Their enthusiasm was infectious.

Among the baton bearers was our own Kurt Fearnley, and I found myself smiling along with him. The organisers of such a major event should also receive a mention, not forgetting the thousands of volunteers. Well done.

Daphne Hughes,KahibahFREE MARKET COMES AT COSTWITH all the focus of political point-scoring being put on electricity and coal, we need to ask ourselves how did it ever get to this?Why, and who needs to be held accountable?

From having a network across the nation that employed thousands, returned dividends to states, provided businesses and citizens with affordable power and remained in the hands of the people, we currently have a system in chaos, spiralling out-of-control prices,now amongst the most expensive in the world. Most of it no longer belongs to us.

It’s adisaster, to put it simply.

Privatisation, a lack of proper maintenance, creating a national network and deregulation have led us to a situation wherethis is what we have. Some past governments should hang their heads in shame, yet none of our current governments want to accept responsibility. Nor do they have a solution to the crisis, apart from blaming renewable energy.

The free market the current government spruiksdoesn’t care, and we are all now paying the price for these stupid decisions. It’s too late for Liddell and many other ageing plants. Privatisation doesn’t work for people. Tollroads and third party insurance are two prime examples, but until the state owns maintains and regulates this industry these problems will never go away, and prices won’t fall until we see the pigs fly.

Shaun Goss,SwanseaLETTER OF THE WEEKTHE pen goes to Carl Stevenson, of Dora Creek,for his letter about cinema history.

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