Short Takes February 22 2018

IN Australia we the citizens have the opportunity to register a vote for people to represent us both in the state and federal parliaments. What makes a mockery of this democratic process is the way political parties can bypass our rank and file views when politicians ignore the rules. 

How long can we afford the wages and over the top conditions for second-class representation from these people while funding is continually reduced from aged care and hospitals? Perhaps the Prime Minister’s fifth visit to America’s version of Barnaby might bring some relief to these underfunded industries and Australian manufacturers.

Gerry Mohan, Shoal Bay

IF a trade apprentice was forced to perform the same vile acts that Newcastle University students have had to endure as an initiation ceremony, the boss would be charged and thrown in jail. Can someone from the university give readers an explanation why the police aren’t involved or why these children haven’t been thrown out for good?

Steve Barnett, Fingal Bay

I NOW know what the NBN network initials stand for. We originally thought that it must be better than what we had in the past, but I am now convinced that it stands for Nothing But Nothing network.   

Gary Graham, Raymond Terrace

IN regard to the injuries suffered by Rod Morris, I think there should be rules or laws in place to penalise board riders who continue to disobey instructions by surf life savers to stay outside the flags, possibly taking their board off them for a period of time or even a fine. Certainly something should be incorporated. This has always been an accident waiting to happen. I wonder how many accidents have gone unreported.

Robert Dixon, Morpeth

I DROVE into the CBD today and drove around for 25 minutes. I still wasn't where I wanted to go, so I gave up and came home. I know the mantra from the Hunter Development Council, state government and council is short term pain for long term gain, but a more accurate summing up would be long term pain for very little gain. All this could have been avoided if the light rail had been kept on the rail corridor. Not happy, Gladys.

Ross Edmonds, Waratah

THE electoral funding and disclosure reform bill is likely to have huge impacts on civil society, apparently forcing grassroots charities and other advocate organisations to join a government register and follow complex rules, with possible prison penalties on executives for non-compliance. If I want to make a donation to, say, GetUp, of more than $4.80 a week, I'll have to get a formal document signed and witnessed by a JP. For big business, though, it's business as usual. The corporate world already has far too much say in Australia's governance. This will just make things worse. This bill is nothing but another nail in democracy's coffin.

Barney Ward, Edgeworth

THE POLLS

SHOULD bus timetables be reviewed? 

Yes 93%, No 7%

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