ON the wages story ('Morrison, Shorten in showdown on wages', Newcastle Herald 14/3), I am 75 years old and have worked all over Australia. For the biggest part of my work life I was a shearer, although I had many other jobs in many other industries as shearing was seasonal.
In all my work life I never found an employer who gave me a job for any other reason than he needed a job to be done.
Throughout my working life, every time a wage increase was in the wind employer groups, supported by conservative politicians, said that if there was a wage increase jobs would be lost. It has never happened, but still they persist with that argument. What about all the employment that was to be generated by the cutting out weekend penalty rates? It never happened. Conservative forces need a new point to make.
Fred McInerney, Karuah
SPEND YOUR ENERGY BETTER
TO the old man who approached me in my car while stopped at the Brunker Road traffic lights this week: the law enforcement arm of the patriarchal order is a much larger societal issue than a woman driving a slightly over a speed limit. Perhaps a more effective way to satisfy your turbulent Samaritan desires is by contributing to real problems like child abuse and neglect, domestic violence, drug use, environmental contamination, ethnic conflict, health disparities, HIV/AIDS, hunger, inadequate emergency services, inequality, jobs, lack of affordable housing, poverty, racism. And I don’t know, maybe next time think twice about reprimanding a woman stopped in her car, with infant child in the back, about a speed limit. That patriarchal order I mentioned is also known as misogyny.
Lexie Busby, Adamstown
ISLAMIC STATE OF LIMBO
I HAVE been watching interviews on the ABC where the brides of ISIS claim they are not receiving fair treatment and should be allowed to return to their original countries (ABC 14/3). I think it smacks of hypocrisy. They remind me of the schoolyard bully's followers when at last the bully is put in his place. These women left with their children and supported the most barbaric acts simply because the victims did not believe in fundamentalist Islam.
Not one removed their burqa, instead hiding behind its veil as they cried how unfair their treatment was and demanded to be returned to their country of origin.
By all means bring back their children, but as far as I am concerned we do not want these radical ratbags running loose in a civilised society with their apparent religious hatred of all things western.
They chose of their own free will to turn their back on a peaceful society and support a barbaric criminal organisation, and I believe the world will be a far safer place when all of these criminals and their supporters, including their brides, are either disposed of or put behind bars for the rest of the natural lives. In my opinion they are brainwashed to a point beyond redemption.
Alan Metcalf, Stockton
POLITICS IS FOR GROWN-UPS
I REFER to the school children striking to protest climate change legislation ('School's out as students go on strike', Herald 14/3). At the risk of sounding cynical, I doubt there would be much of a roll-up if the planned protest was changed to a Saturday.
I also wonder if the teachers behind this fiasco would be there on a weekend or on a student-free day. Children cannot vote. This is not discriminatory. It is because children are children. They lack the maturity to make up their own minds about all sorts of things including alcohol, drugs, sex, Justin Bieber, and yes, climate change. For this reason, adults who hopefully do have a certain level of maturity make their decisions for them.
I have no confidence in this movement, and suspect the vast majority of participants are either following the pack of using this as an excuse to skip classes.
Brendan Curren, Caves Beach
NEW SPIN ON POWER STATION
HAVING read people's views that the proposed coal-fired power station at Kurri Kurri would contribute to climate change, affecting people's quality of life and interfering with a rare birds mating ability, l find it amusing.
l live in sight of Eraring power station, which has no effect on my quality of life or the thousands of native blue and jenny wrens, willy wagtails and many other small birds rarely seen elsewhere.
If Eraring was replaced with as many wind turbines needed to produce the same power, l believe Dora Creek, Wangi Wangi, Morisset, Cooranbong and even Toronto would all become ghost towns because of the area these wind farms would consume, the ugly landscape they present and harmonious drone they produce.
Even suburbs across the lake like Belmont couldn't escape the noise during certain wind conditions. Think twice before rubbishing coal, because a bit of extra carbon l can live with but noise pollution is a definite no no regardless of all the benefits they are perceived to offer.
Carl Stevenson, Dora Creek
AUSTRALIA CAN BE GREAT
WHAT has happened to our country, the one both my father and grandfather enlisted to fight for when they were only 16? They were proud to fight for a nation that meant a great deal to them.
We have lost our ability to protect our heritage, our briefs and ideals. We are being manipulated by a failing government, political incorrectness, poor laws, racial tensions and the narrow-sighted millennial groups that only see their needs and wants.
Kangaroos are the only ones showing any balls about their country. Let’s get back to being proud true blues, finding a fighting Aussie spirit once again. We don’t need drugs to achieve that, nor do we need to shoot anybody. Are you proud to be Australian? Then have your say. We used to ride on the back of a sheep, now we’re just flogging a dead horse.
Stick up for our nation. Many people died protecting our homeland because they were proud of their country. Let’s do them proud and show respect towards our emergency service personnel and soldiers. I love my country how it used to be and can be again.
Graeme Kime, Cameron Park
LETTER OF THE WEEK
THE pen goes to Steve Weatherstone of Warners Bay.