How bloody well dare you, the editor of The Canberra Times (and other editors) publish such utter crap as I have read in Tuesday's papers regarding the performance of the officials in this year's NRL grand final.
Not a single word of praise for the great job done by all who officiated; all was concentrated on the "incident" towards the latter part of the game.
You appear to be catering for the half-tanked crew; fueled by alcohol and baying for blood just like the Romans of ancient days when they threw the Christians to the lions.
People who have never refereed a game of football in their lives; people who would not know which end of the whistle to blow into. People like your reporter who said "supporters are leaving the game in droves because of poor refereeing". What a load of crap.
How do they think the officials of this year's grand final feel with all of this negative publicity? Don't forget, they are people too.
Cummins has always been, and always will be, top dog as far as refereeing is concerned and I wish him every success despite all of the crap that has been written over this weekend. Hang your heads in shame and give credit where credit is due.
David Cook, Evatt
A dark day
The NRL competition can sink no lower given the poor referring at the grand final last Sunday. The post-game efforts by officials to support the very questionable referee calls that clearly disadvantaged the Raiders are insulting.
How coach Ricky Stuart and players held their cool is to be commended; I didn't. It's time the NRL reverted to one referee on field. The old adage that "too many cooks (referees) spoil the broth" applies.
Martin Devine, Macarthur
ACT govt disappoints
The ACT government's decision to limit rental increases to the CPI, with the likely result in a decrease in the supply of rental housing ("Rental changes may backfire badly", canberratimes.com.au, October, 4), is another example of its inadequacy.
The government has failed to (a) provide sufficient resources to the health system (b) provide sufficient social housing (c) take action to reduce congestion by influencing employment location (d) justify the development of light rail in the context of the projects low benefit to cost ratio (e) supply sufficient detached housing and (f) justify its 70 per cent infill target despite the risk of shifting detached housing demand over the border with undesirable environmental and financial impacts.
In response to low vacancy rates and high rents, the government rather than restricting rent increases to the CPI should increase the supply of social housing, reduce land taxes on rental properties and consider the merits of a lower rate of population growth in the ACT.
M Quirk, Garran
Good old days
Whatever happened to those athletic rugby league forwards who made ground from the edge of the ruck using speed and guile?
Players like Ron Coote, Ray Price, Steve Menzies. I guess they would not make good wrestlers or be able to make two or three metres with two or three of the opposition hanging off them - even though they would only have to do it for 50 minutes per game.
R. J. Wenholz, Holt
So when we give financial support for farmers and their families, it's not "welfare", according to Bridget McKenzie. Of course it is: welfare is wellbeing for individuals, it's part of a civilised society's social security system.
Welfare is not a dirty word, nor is it only what "losers" get. Farmers in severe drought are no different from other Australians, whose jobs have disappeared beneath them.
Jennifer Bradley, Cook
Samuel Alexander ("Annoying, but do they have a point?", October 9, p20) rightly argues that the legitimacy of Extinction Rebellion's disobedience must be weighed against the wrongs that triggered it, namely, man-made climate change ("Extinction Rebellion protesters might be annoying. But they have a point", canberratimes.com.au, October 9).
I suspect the people whose homes have burned down by out-of-control bushfires in northern NSW this week might agree with him. The fires follow months of severe drought, one that may have been part of the natural cycle but, nevertheless, was exacerbated by climate change.
It's not just fires. Without significant rain, the Macquarie River is forecast to run dry by November. This river system normally experiences an average inflow of 1,448 gigalitres annually but in the past two years has seen just 97 gigalitres enter it. Significant towns reliant on water from the Macquarie such as Dubbo and Cobar will run out of water if the river runs dry.
And it's not just here that climate change is already being made manifest. In Alaska, high temperatures are rewriting the record books (Dying Salmon, Wildfires, Heat Waves, Vanishing Ice: In Alaska, Climate Change Is Impossible to Ignore, SF Gate, 8 Oct 2019).
Sea ice is retreating, pink salmon are dying in their thousands across Norton Sound, Chinook salmon have declined precipitously in the Cook Inlet, and wildfires have burnt 2.6 million acres across the state this year.
I'll not be lying down on the road with Extinction Rebellion, but like Samuel Alexander, I understand where they're coming from.
Jenny Goldie, Cooma, NSW
A cynical ploy
The proposals by the chief actuary for Medibank Private, Andrew Matthews ("Call for government to help pay sick Australians insurance premiums", canberratimes.com.au, October 9) are undoubtedly formulated with a particular aim, namely that of the wellbeing not of patients but his employer's profits and growth.
"As a country, we want great health outcomes with efficient costs" he said.
A more impartial analysis would question a system of health funding where over a billion dollars slides out as profits and huge amounts are consumed in administration and inefficient shopfronts.
However, in the same article the comment by the Prime Minister Scott Morrison should raise real alarm.
That is that he is prepared to listen to a suggestion for tax exemptions to allow employers to offer free insurance to employees. This throws open the door for a profound Americanisation of our health system.
Kite flying by "for profit" heath funds and this Trump-lite Prime Minister should be viewed with great caution.
Steve Thomas, Yarralumla
A pity the suburb of Downer is named after Sir John Downer (Letters, October 7). It would have been better if the suburb had been named after ex Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer.
Sir John Downer both as Attorney General and Premier of South Australia) was notoriously negligent the performance of his duties by repeatedly ignoring massacres of Aboriginal people in South Australia and the Northern Territory in the 19th century.
This is well documented by Tony Roberts in an article in The Monthly in November, 2009.
The suburb of Downer is a locality with a real case for a name change!
Rod Holesgove, Crace
Happiness a gift
Antony Loewenstein ("We need a Ministry of Happiness", October 8, p25) joins the bandwagon of those believing that the opposite of being happy is being depressed.
What being in a state of "happiness" means is not explained by Loewenstein. He doesn't say how it can be achieved either.
Will a Ministry of Happiness make me "happy" about the refereeing blunders that cost the Raiders a grand final? Will a government department render me less glum about going bald and getting old and grumpy?Simon Tatz, Ripponlea, Vic
Will a Ministry of Happiness make me "happy" about the refereeing blunders that cost the Raiders a grand final?
Will a government department render me less glum about going bald and getting old and grumpy?
Everyday I feel unhappy about humans destroying our earth, about Trump and Boris, about the way we treat the vulnerable and those seeking safe refuge; about injustice and inequity. Can an Australian Government Ministry address my unhappiness at the state of the world? I doubt it.
It is a bizarre notion that human beings are meant to be "happy", whatever that means. Throughout our lives we can experience grief, loss, melancholy, sadness, disappointment, loneliness, anger and frustration.
There is a difference between being unhappy, which may be short-term or a consequence of normal human reactions, and clinical depression requiring treatment and support.
It is misguided to believe a government agency can ameliorate normal human experiences and make us happy little vegemites.
Simon Tatz, Ripponlea, Vic
Trump no joke
With his tweet about Turkey being the ones to sort out IS, the truth is clear: Donald Trump is certifiably unhinged. No sane person would say "I, in my great and unmatched wisdom,..." except as a joke. Trump is no joke.
Margaret Lee, Hawker
TO THE POINT
Is Trump putting himself above the creator by declaring his personal "great and unmatched wisdom"? If so, I trust he won't try to further out-match God, who bears responsibility for the greatest disasters the world has known.
Eric Hunter, Cook
With our reserve bankers seemingly lacking control of the game, shouldn't we run on our first graders?
M. F. Horton, Adelaide, SA
POLICY IS POOR
Those questioning the RBA's race to the bottom on interest rates include Peter Costello, ANU economist Professor Warwick McKibbin, and former RBA governor Ian Macfarlane. Lowering rates sends a negative message and won't promote retiree spending. What will the RBA do when the bottom is reached?
Murray May, Cook
How long before our mixed bag of psychopaths, arsonists, and other misfits join honest climate protesters with the single aim of burning and destroying property. We've seen it happen in Hong Kong.
Norm Lee, Weston
ALCOHOL IS EVIL
Does the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons say no to alcohol ("Surgeons say no to pot", October 8, p1). If not why not? I look forward to a response.
E Blix, Canberra
BAN THE BOOZE
Re "Surgeons say no to pot" (October 8, p1). I don't recall the Surgeons saying no to alcohol, which is far more deadly and dangerous than cannabis according to the statisticians. I'd like to see the surgeons come out and say no to alcohol as well.
Ellison Clearwater, Canberra
I'm glad Shorten has admitted Labor pursued tax restructure in the last election the country did not accept. Labor should have put more emphasis on jobs. The country needs the changes proposed by Labor. But they must come gradually.
Sankar Kumar Chatterjee, Evatt
The ostrich approach to governance is slowly becoming the norm in the Morrison government and it appears nothing is going to change during his term. Apathy is becoming the new normal.
Dallas Fraser, Canberra
Presuming the name reflects their cause, I must admire Extinction Rebellion's optimism in protesting about climate change rather than the POTUS.
John Howarth, Weston
I find the the actions of the Extinction Rebellion protesters to be most inconsiderate. If they are planning a "nudie run" in Melbourne's CBD where I work, they could at least schedule it for a weekday and not the weekend.
Keith Harkin, Cannons Creek, Vic
IT'S ABOUT MONEY
The withdrawal of US troops from Syria is not a sellout. It is big weapons business for the US and Turkey. This in turn generate jobs for America, enhancing Trump's re-election prospects.
Michael Tang, Fadden
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