Letters for Wednesday, December 17, 2014

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OVER the years there have been many ideas put forward to get rid of gorse.

The latest is to release a particular type of moth larvae in the Pipers River area.

The type of moth isn’t mentioned, so hopefully when fully grown they will only lay their eggs on gorse bushes.

Perhaps the University of Tasmania’s biological control unit could also come up with something to get rid of hawthorn as well, it is almost as bad as gorse.

Worse, in fact if you have a hawthorn hedge on your property, because the landowner is not allowed to remove it according to Tasmanian law.

Tasmanians ought to send all the gorse, hawthorn, rabbits, starling, sparrows and blackbirds back to the UK.

— JOHN DENNE, Longford.


I HAVE several overseas born friends unable to obtain Australian citizenship.

This despite the fact that they are all tertiary educated, in good health, relatively well heeled and with no criminal history apart from the odd parking fine.

One of them has worked in Tasmania on a 457 visa as a senior health professional for several years.

Although her efforts have improved the quality of many folk’s lives immeasurably, our department of immigration feel that she is not a suitable person to be granted permanent residence; no reason given. Contrast this then with the record of Man Haron Monis and the ease in which he was firstly allowed to enter, then stay in Australia, and it’s clear that those responsible for undertaking a sensible migration program to this country are spectacularly out of touch with the wants and needs of local communities.

— DAVE ROBINSON, Newstead.

George Town hub

WE have had the absolute pleasure to look through the new “Hub” in George Town.

This is a fantastic building and every one involved in the construction of the complex should stand very proud.

It will be a great asset to any member of the community that choose to use the facility.

It is a magnificent addition to our town.



THERE’S enough scientifically-backed evidence available now to show fracking is a seriously bad idea on many levels – not least economically.

It really is time all members of the Hodgman government acknowledge Tasmania’s environment is our state’s greatest economic asset.

The rest of the world can see it, but for some bizarre reason our governments do not.

Tasmania has won, or been highly placed, in countless tourism awards this year.

A sensible and economically responsible government would be seeking ways to further capitalise on these awards, and promote what Tasmania clearly does so outstandingly well.



THERE was some publicity recently given to the cost of refurbishing an electoral office for a Liberal MHR elected in 2013.

Despite a response from the federal MP suggesting the costs were justified and “within guidelines”, many voters – even on the same side of politics – were dismayed/embarrassed/ropeable when the costs of that office fit out were published.

These are difficult economic times and if there is one theme running through it is “belt tightening”.

No matter that “within guidelines” and “a very small expense in the overall scheme of things” may be considered sufficient explanations for what a sceptical voter might regard as a “rip-off”, it is the necessary, if unfortunate, responsibility of elected representatives from all parties to have tighter belts than most.

With the holiday season here and politicians off somewhere, let’s hope they take to heart some of their own advice and go frugal and shop locally – domestic holidays rather than taxpayer funded trips to far away places with strange-sounding names and almost total irrelevance to an MP’s need to gain knowledge and expertise.



WE ARE told that we want to be the clever country/state.

Here we are giving more money to education for resources but cutting teachers. Who is going to use all these new resources?

Now we have Prime Minister Tony Abbott scrapping jobs in the CSIRO and training courses. Where is the cleverness? Certainly not in our federal or state governments.

Still, I guess as long as the pollies get all their entitlements then all is well with the world.



LET’S forget party politics for a minute.

When did Australia elect to have two governments operating at the one time?

It appears right now that we have just this.

We have a government, formed in the House of Reps, elected earlier this year by a comfortable majority.

But we seem to have another government in the Senate.

One government – the government of the people – tries to enact legislation that it took to the election. Yet, we have the second government (the Senate) rejecting 90 per cent of the proposed laws.

This is clearly an untenable situation. Surely the Senate is there to scrutinise and review legislation. It is entitled – indeed required – to pick legislation to pieces, complain, condemn, even amend legislation, but not to block it completely.

The result is that Australia is going nowhere. It simply can’t while we have two ‘governments’.

The opposition is there to put its point of view. And so it should. But at the moment, it, along with the Greens, simply block. They are acting like a second government.

I am absolutely positive that when our forefathers established Parliament this scenario was never envisaged.

To say Australia is ‘ungovernable’ at the moment may be an overstatement.

But unless the Senate pulls its head in and starts acting like a house of review, the time may come – sooner than we think – that the country comes to a complete standstill.

— TONY BENNEWORTH, Launceston.


I WAS amazed to here recently on television, a poll which would put Labor back in power if there was an election now.

Does the public really think Labor would do anything different to what they have done recently?

First consider that Kevin Rudd after spending $42 billion surplus handed to him by Peter Costello in his first year in office and then had to borrow madly to overcome the Global Financial Crisis the next year.

Plus then borrowing billions of dollars to run the country.

When Labor were put out of office by the people, it was because they had exposed their way of operating.

The new government was not handed a $42 billion surplus as was their predecessors, instead they were handed a debt.

How on earth were they expected to produce anything but a tough budget and then put up with the hypocrisy of the previous government’s taunting over their first budget?

If this latest poll is true, then all I can say is, do the Australian people have such a seriously short memory of why they outed Labor in the first place, or do Australians not see the obvious, which is,

No Employer = No Employee.

— KEN MANNING, Deloraine.

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