The article "Capital plans to lead the nation on climate change" (February 21, p13, 16) led me to conclude the ACT government should join forces with the South Australian and Tasmanian governments to lead the nation to a sustainable "post-carbon" future.
The ACT, whose government is to be commended for its commitment to climate action through renewable energy, could be disregarded as a climate policy outlier because of its small size and population. However, joining forces with SA and Tasmania would constitute a force to be reckoned with.
This alliance could perhaps convince NSW, and even Queensland, that leaving coal in the ground where it belongs is the only way to fulfil their commitments to achieve net-zero emissions of the gases causing global heating by 2050.
Douglas Mackenzie, Deakin
Trial by media?
Brittany Higgins, due to her alleged rape in 2019, was the focus of media attention last week. The media has chosen to blame the Prime Minister, the government, senators, security guards, colleagues and the cleaners.
The alleged assailant was sacked soon after for a security breach. Where does this leave the alleged assailant's chances when he eventually faces court? He has apparently already been found guilty by the media.
Whether or not his liaison with Miss Higgins was consensual remains to be proved or disproved in a court of law.
Guilty or not, how is this man going to get a fair trial?
L Barnard, West Belconnen
Change the name
I have the greatest respect for Heather Henderson and while her support of Sir William Slim is commendable (Letters, February 22) there is a very good reason why the road that bears his name should be changed, regardless of his alleged paedophilia.
Our national capital's suburbs and thoroughfares should carry the names of notable Australians (including our indigenous brothers and sisters) from all areas of public service.
British military or political identities whose service was primarily for their own country and whose Australian appointments were at the service of the Crown, surely have no place in 21st century Canberra's location names.
Dunrossil Drive, leading to Government House is another example where it would much more appropriate to be "made in Australia"; perhaps our first Australian-born Governor-General, Sir Isaac Isaacs.
Especially appropriate in fact; George V didn't want him because he was a "local".
Eric Hunter, Cook
I am not appalled, as Heather Henderson is, that Sir William Slim's name will be expunged from Canberra because he was an alleged paedophile.
I have never forgotten hearing a victim of child sexual abuse at the notorious Fairbridge Farm interviewed on Radio National some years ago.
He told of how the little boys, of whom he was one, were agog at the chance of a ride in Slim's Rolls-Royce. The victim was only able to report his experience many years later in the public domain because he had previously described it to the Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (2013).
The Commission not being a court of law, no perpetrator could be convicted, as Slim also was not.
I have cycled in the area of Sir William Slim Drive often and every time I have seen the road sign bearing his name I have thought of that boy, and wished that the name of the road could be changed.
This decision about a road name is a form of truth and reconciliation process. We humans are all flawed, and it is important that, even concerning admired and meritorious figures, we acknowledge alleged flaws.
Angela Giblin, Lyneham
Not guilty, not innocent
Heather Henderson (Letters, February 22) makes various unsubstantiated statements.
Given our lack of knowledge of whether William Slim was justly accused of paedophilia, she bases her judgment on the fact she considered him "one of the most impressive men" she has ever known.
This has never been a guarantee of a person's behaviour in private.
She asserts, but has no proof that he would not have been in uniform, he would not have been alone and he would not have been driving himself.
These are assumptions but she has no substantial proof. I have no idea whether Sir William Slim was guilty of these offences and neither does Heather Henderson.
What is more offensive is that she hints that her "position" grants her the privilege of knowing such things.
Vee Saunders, Weetangera
Rewards for failure
The government is the only organisation in society that is rewarded for failure.
Only the most obtuse can still fail to see that hotel quarantine does not work. Victoria's Premier, Dan Andrews, gloatingly touted his state's hotel quarantine as the gold standard; gleefully taking the credit. But when it failed, again, and his contact tracing system was once again exposed as a totally dysfunctional mess did he take responsibility and do the honourable thing and resign?
Quite the opposite, in fact. He got to impose another strict lockdown that will probably boost his popularity in a state suffering from a "Stockholm Syndrome" epidemic. People have been driven mad by a constant diet of fear; they have drunk the Kool Aid of "saveism".
There is no downside for politicians to causing perhaps irreparable harm to the economy, society, and people's health. Yes, there are illnesses and health issues other than COVID-19.
If we were really all in this together politicians and bureaucrats would have to share the pain that their decisions cause, not profit from it.
D Zivkovic, Aranda
A simple plan
As we watch the infill of LBG's west basin move gradually towards the museum it occurred to me that the government could save all the angst and expense of modifying Commonwealth Avenue Bridge for Stage 2 of light rail by continuing the infill another 100 metres round the corner to beneath the bridge.
We could replace the bridge with a causeway enabling us to build as many lanes and rails as we like without major expense. It would also allow more apartment buildings with great access to light rail.
The icing on the cake would be that we could open the east and central basins to powerboats with sailors and rowers safely confined to the western end of the lake.
Tony Dyson, O'Connor
You've got mail...
I wonder if we will ever return to daily mail deliveries. I can understand that at the height of the pandemic, with everyone ordering things online which needed to be delivered by postmen, the pressure would have been very high, hence the reduction in the number of deliveries per week.
I do not believe that to be the case now. I would like to see services return to normal. Other countries have been able to do twice-daily deliveries. If we can't deliver once-daily, then Australia Post needs to increase its number of postmen.
I would also like to see the return of the priority mail service. I thought when it was introduced it was shocking to think one had to pay extra to get delivery within a reasonable timeframe. Now I would welcome its return.
Margaret Lee, Hawker
No laughing matter
John Howarth (Letters, February 15) jests about the Canberra Big Battery being akin to the Big Banana, Big Trout, and so on.
This reminds me of our Prime Minister's comments about the then planned South Australian big battery: "By all means, have the world's biggest battery, have the world's biggest prawn... but that's not solving the problem... It is so at the margin it barely is worthy of a mention".
It was so successful that the current SA Liberal government increased the capacity by 50 per cent (150 megawatts). There are now batteries planned for Lithgow (500 megawatts), Kurri-Kurri (1200 megawatts) and a number of others including one in the north as part of an energy hub of 10,000 kilowatts (150 times the capacity of the SA battery).
These developments are being driven by state and territory governments and entrepreneurs with vision. It's a pity we have only cynicism and no leadership by the federal government.
Doug Limbrick, Swinger Hill
Let them go home
In considering the alleged rape of a young Parliament House staffer, Scott Morrison drew upon his feelings in relation to his own daughters. It would be nice if he could draw upon those same feelings in relation to the two little girls currently being held on Christmas Island. It is surely time to draw a line under this tragic situation, stop enriching the lawyers, show some genuine compassion, and send the family back to the community that actually wants them.
Catherine Rossiter, Fadden
TO THE POINT
Such a shame Tennis Australia doesn't recognise the value and quality of all finals by alternating the women's and men's final match as the final game. It's time to say that the women's final is a significant match, on a par with the men's.
Ann Villiers, Scullin
If I search for a news articles on, say, a recent shark attack, Google takes me to a page where a media company can ask me to pay to read the article, or can show me the article peppered with ads. Can someone please explain why Google should pay media companies for bringing customers to their door?
Linda Groom, Deakin
IGNORE THE IDIOTS
I was amazed at the "huge numbers" that turned out across the country to protest the roll out of COVID-19 vaccinations. I mean, in Hobart alone, there were over 100 people from across Tasmania (which has a population of over 500,000). These minor protests are not representative of the national community.
Alan Leitch, Austins Ferry, Tasmania
WEALTH BEYOND MEASURE
The Brittany Higgins issue has left federal parliamentarians spoilt for a choice of bandwagons.
M F Horton, Adelaide, SA
A THIN NARRATIVE
If we are going to expunge from history all who may have unsavoury personal habits, historical records are going to become extraordinarily "slim".
John J Smiles, Deakin West
WAIT YOUR TURN PM
I'm not happy that the PM and other ministers are getting the jab first. They do not fall into the category of frontline workers and the most exposed. I would respect them more if they said they would go last after all Australians whom they are bound to protect have been vaccinated.
Ed Gaykema, Kiama
SPORT AND POLITICS?
I noticed Scott Morrison was wearing an Australian Diamonds' T-shirt when he received his COVID-19 vaccine. Isn't this the bloke who recently told us sport and politics don't mix.
Steve Whennan, Richardson
MYSTERY TO ME
While investigations continue into Brittany Higgins's alleged rape, can we also be told what was the security breach which led to the offender's dismissal from the Defence Minister's office?
Greg Cornwell, Yarralumla
Re the alleged rape in Linda Reynolds's office, and similar cases. Why do we only see the victim and not the perpetrator?
Frances Moore, Melba
THE LAST TO KNOW
Some journalists and political commentators accuse the Prime Minister of not answering the question; obfuscation and implausible self-serving spin. This is unfair. As was the the case with Brittany Higgins, the PM is the last to know.
Tom Dobinson, Tweed, Heads, NSW
EACH WAY BETS
The letters column is starting to feel like a military march - left (one day), right (the next). Left, right, left, right.
Keith Hill, Nuriootpa, SA
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