Short Takes July 13 2018: readers have their say on the day’s news

I HAVE often wondered what Stevie Wonder has been up to lately. Refereeing State of Origin, perhaps?

Steve Barnett, Fingal Bay

JOHN William Hill (Short Takes 11/7) calls John Howard's back flip on GST the biggest in political history. In my opinion that title goes to Ms Gillard's carbon tax. Howard announced his intentions prior to the 1998 election. Ms Gillard on the other hand promised "no carbon tax...." prior to the election and backflipped only days after we voted. Mr Shorten loudly and repeatedly praised Ms Gillard for this. Mr Shorten then performed a double backflip by voting to replace Ms Gillard with Mr Rudd, having previously played a lead role in ousting  Mr Rudd. Mr Rudd then made his own attempt at the biggest back flip title by reopening offshore detention centres which he had previously closed. Mr Shorten supported both the decision to close and reopen the centres. How can we trust him?

Dave McTaggart, Edgeworth

JOHN William Hill's comments on Shorten and Howard's backflips (Short Takes 11/7) miss two other of Labor's: Gillard's no carbon tax under a government I lead and Shorten’s franking credits change of mind, making the score three to Labor and one to the Liberals as far as I can see.

Ian King, Warners Bay

WHEN we learned that the Howard government had bugged the offices of the East Timor government in order to rip off one of the world’s poorest nations in 2004 we weren't that shocked. Par for the course. Now the man who spilt the beans on Honest John Howard is being prosecuted by the Turnbull government (“Former ASIS spy charged after exposing East Timor bugging, MP reveals”, Sydney Morning Herald 28/6). Freedom of speech anyone?

Mac Maguire, Charlestown

It’s no wonder I keep writing about the fact that every system and service in this country is flawed, failing or just plain broken, when the latest example of wasting money can be seen by a million dollar reward being offered for information on the killing of a gangster – Raphael Josephs -. This money will more than likely be collected by other gangsters in their quest for greed at the expense of everyday Australians. Surely that million dollars would be better spent in proper monitoring of dangerous people that the forces have been warned about but haven’t got the time or people to do the job properly –resulting in that person killing innocent victims.

Allan Earl, Thornton

THE socialist side of politics never stops playing the guilt game. But it is you and me who pay, not the left-wing voters. Australia has the largest volume of resources in the world including coal, gas and uranium, but the Green side of politics push the guilt button and the poor and elderly freeze in the dark in winter. Summarised simply, I think the Labor party have abandoned the poor and the workers. They don’t care if thousands of miners are out of work. The Paris climate accord is God. I think they are a bunch of short-sighted idealists.

Mark Dultry, Wickham