How good is Australia for the US President?
The spectre of Scott Morrison ingratiating himself to Donald Trump is worrying. The Prime Minister should keep in mind the saying “he who sups with the devil should have a long spoon”. Any so-called deals will not benefit Australia and its environment. It seems inevitable that we will have to brace themselves for a visit Down Under by Trump. If only the presidential election were sooner and the Democrats had a “Trump beating” candidate. Interesting times are ahead.
Ian Starr, Bright
Close alignment with the US may backfire on us
Scott Morrison committing Australia to Donald Trump takes us back to Harold Holt and “All the way with LBJ”. We know where that finished up. When will we learn the lesson in our dealings with the United States?
Geoff Charles, Mount Waverley
Why celebrate a factory in Ohio, rather than here?
Let us hope Scott Morrison asks Anthony Pratt why he opened a paper plant in the US rather than here. Surely we really need a huge factory, employing hundreds of people, in a regional area. We have so many people who are unemployed and such a factory would boost the number of jobs that the government is keen to say it has produced. Also, taxes would be paid here and profits kept in Australia. Subsidies that usually go to coal and fossil fuel industries could surely be offered to such an investment. It looks as though Scott Morrison is celebrating the wrong thing.
Anne Findlay, Princes Hill
The leaders’ meeting that we really wanted
There are suggestions that Scott Morrison sought an invitation to the White House for Hillsong founder Brian Houston. It is too bad that the invitation was not extended to Boris Johnson. Certainly such an auspicious meeting of the three heads of state would have trumped the Three Stooges.
Jennifer Joseph, South Yarra
Shared view on the climate and political advantage
So, Donald Trump presented Scott Morrison with a model of a battleship, a symbol of their shared interest in the future security of the Pacific. Morrison could reciprocate by presenting Trump with a lump of coal, a symbol of their shared interest in seeking political advantage by remaining dismissive of the evidence of the accelerating rate of the destructiveness of climate change.
Edwin Harari, Fitzroy
The world call for action, two leaders are oblivious
While thousands of people in Australia, and millions worldwide, demonstrated and called for action on climate change, Donald Trump and Scott Morrison patted each other on the back in the US. Morrison did not even attend the UN climate change meeting being held in that country. What a disappointment this man is.
Paul Gearing, Moonee Ponds
Fly us taxpayers to the moon, Prime Minister
Praise the Lord for the marketing genius of Scott Morrison. At a cost of a mere $150million to the Australian taxpayer, his cunning plan of a coal-fired rocket to Mars or the moon (one and the same to Donald Trump) may soon come to fruition. Hopes are strong for a successful approach to One Nation senator Malcolm Roberts to be the rocket’s jockey-in-chief.
Richard Hughes, Woodend
The needy miss out again
Scott Morrison cannot put a few more dollars a week into the pockets of Newstart recipients but he can give $150million to the Australian Space Agency to develop technologies to be used in the US mission to land astronauts on the moon by 2024. If he and Donald Trump are on the first launch, it will be money well spent.
Graeme Sparkes, Diamond Creek
Putting children first
I could not agree more with Jenna Price in her well-written and commonsense article (“Family Court inquiry is worrying”, Comment, 24/9). The welfare of children and families should mostly depend on well-trained, unbiased and experienced counsellors, family therapists and mediators, rather than lawyers and non-specific judges.
Pam McQueen, Malvern
We pay our MPs’s wages
A suggestion for Ray Frost (“Centrelink stonewalling”, Letters, 23/9). I have had some success in making an end run around the Centrelink firewall on behalf of my mother by contacting the electorate office of her local MP. On each of two occasions, I have had a same-day solution to problems that Centrelink either did not want to address, or could not address with the systems it insists that we must follow. It should not be that way, but there is more than one way to skin this particular cat. We pay MPs very well. Feel free to use their services, or at least those of their staff.
Ken Richards, Elwood
Forgotten war criminals
As usual, your editorial (The Age, 23/9) was measured and informative, discussing warfare and the rules of personal conduct associated with it. And yet while individual soldiers are being called to account for actions in the field deemed outside normal practice, hardly a mention any more about the actions of three individuals who illegally invaded Iraq and caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians.
George Bush, Tony Blair and John Howard should not be allowed to fade into history without being brought to account for their actions, just as the soldiers currently under investigation are facing. High office brings about high responsibility. These three men need to be paraded before a world court and told it is not acceptable to invade other countries because they feel like it, and severe consequences need to be applied.
Chris Brennan, Gladysdale
Go to war, shoot to kill
Re your headline “Commando members confess to murder” (The Age, 21/9). Isn’t that the purpose of war?
Mary Walker, Richmond
And what do you do?
A first-time Brownlow viewer here. What a spectacle. A chance for AFL royalty to wear really nice clothes and celebrate their success. I cannot believe I missed watching so many previous Brownlow nights. Well-groomed couples arrive on the red carpet, appearing as if they had been warned this might be their best chance at appearing on the front cover of New Idea and snagging a few more followers on Instagram.
With lights and cameras blazing, they are briefly interviewed before being seated. The male player is generally asked a football question, while his partner, having been identified by the interviewer as being incapable of intelligent thought or conversation, is asked about her dress. Surely some of these women have interesting occupations or opinions which would be more worthy of inquiry.
Richard Hatcher, Teesdale
Let’s go electric
Instead of worrying about our strategic oil reserves or, worse, going to war over them, why not accelerate the implementation of electric cars backed by renewables? We would reduce our reliance on foreign, imported oil and help stop the climate crisis.
Cade Amos, Brunswick East
40 years ago, we knew
During a recent cleanout of my childhood home, I unearthed a long-forgotten year 12 biology assignment that I completed in 1979. This handwritten assignment, written before the availability of personal computers and the internet, seems a relic from an ancient time.
The topic? The relationship between humans and the environment. In this essay, I detailed how human activity such as the burning of fossil fuels increases the carbon dioxide content of the atmosphere, leading to atmospheric warming, and discussed scientific research indicating this warming would lead to future changes in weather patterns and melting of sea ice.
How much longer do we wait before serious measures are adopted by the federal government to mitigate this problem?
Robyn Starr, Fitzroy North
Passionate, truthful words
How good was Greta Thunberg’s speech at the UN’s Climate Action Summit? She said, in part: “You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words. And yet I’m one of the lucky ones. People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money and fairytales of eternal economic growth.”
Why does it take a teenager to say things that identify the troglodytes in the Coalition and One Nation parties? If they do not understand the science of climate change, then how can they understand simple economics, national security and social services?
Adrian Tabor, Point Lonsdale
Why our youth despair
I broke into tears watching Greta Thunberg speak at the climate conference. I wonder if, as a Christian, Scott Morrison remembers a song that goes, “Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world.” If he does, he might show more compassion by accepting that our government’s projected failure to meet Australia’s miserly emissions targets are part of the reason why young people such as Greta are in such despair. He might even have made a brief appearance at the conference, something even his good buddy Donald Trump managed to do.
Robert Brown, Rye
Admirable climate fighters
Greta Thunberg and David Attenborough, you are my heroes.
Jean Andrews, Cheltenham
It’s time to act together
Well done to the 300,000 students and supporters who took part the climate strike across Australia. It is now well understood that climate change, if left unabated, will have a profound – if not fatal – impact on future generations.
What is not appreciated (by the laggards) is if we do not treat it as a crisis and act accordingly, the vast majority of us will be negatively impacted. Anyone who intends to live for another 10 years (about 20million of us) will face the realities of a collapsing environment, increased heatwaves, more droughts, rising insurance costs, falling asset values, reduction in investment returns, unstable export markets and global instability. We must act now.
Terry Court, Tatura
Just a little sacrifice or two
Of course we all support our young people’s efforts on climate change. But as adults, what are we doing to bring this about? Do we put on extra clothes so the heating can be turned down? Do we really need to drive somewhere when we could walk? Do we really need a big four-wheel-drive? Let us do our bit by sacrificing a little of our very comfortable lifestyles.
Peg Brown, Emerald
Safe and unsafe subjects
The moon is not threatened by global warming, which makes it a “safe” scientific topic to enter the government’s awareness. It would be even better if it were a potential source of coal.
Jan Newmarch, Oakleigh
Patronise our Queen Vic
I am intrigued that the Queen Vic Market (The Age, 24/9) needs to be reinvigorated in order to attract more customers when the population of the city of Melbourne, and greater Melbourne, is growing faster than other parts of Australia. (According to the City of Melbourne’s website, its population is expected to more than double by 2041.)
Where are today’s residents shopping for food? The Queen Vic Market is easily accessible by foot and its numerous trams are part of the free zone.
I worked away from Melbourne from 2009 to 2016. On my return, I noticed there was less fresh fruit and vegetables at the market, probably by about 30 per cent. Regardless, the offerings continue to be excellent, the prices very good and the traders helpful and cheerful. It is a great food market.
Geoffrey Conaghan, St Kilda
Help the church’s victims
Cardinal George Pell is appealing his sentence. No surprise there. What would surprise is if he accepted the verdict and spent his time in jail praying to atone for the sins of his church. And if he directed whoever is funding the appeal to instead put the money towards compensating the victims.
Jill Rosenberg, Caulfield South
The tougher, the better
Crossword compiler DA challenges us by taking us out of our comfort zone, forcing us to do a bit of research and introducing us to unknown words. What’s not to like?
Marilyn Brown, Point Lonsdale
Seeking strong leaders
In previous times of trouble, Australia had Billy Hughes and John Curtin. If trouble were to show up today, who would measure up? I think I know why bunnies dig burrows.
Peter McNicol, Sandringham
Right to independence
For the past few months, the Indonesian government has been victimising West Papuan civilians and targeting university students. There has been an escalation of violence and it is time the United Nations became involved and so too Scott Morrison. The situation is similar to what happened in East Timor. West Papua urgently needs its independence now before more lives are lost.
Mary Fenelon, Doncaster East
AND ANOTHER THING
Has our PM been damned with fulsome praise?
Tim Winter, Vermont South
A man of titanium? Does that mean he’s a lightweight PM?
Breda Hertaeg, Beaumaris
More the man of coal.
Ruben Buttigieg, Mount Martha
Morrison’s essential luggage: a plentiful supply of sycophancy.
George Norrish, Essendon
Morrison spends $20 million on domestic recycling and $150million on the Mars mission. Perhaps we can send our rubbish there.
Irene Proebsting, Tyers
Do Scott and Donald know that China is the world’s major supplier of titanium?
Dave Torr, Werribee
Is ScoMo’s pressure on China a titanium knee-jerk? The Chinese are trembling in their boots.
Michael Sargeant, Chirnside Park
Thank you, school strikers, for the precious gift of hope. Don’t stop. You lead, and we will follow.
Susie Latham, Preston
The last hour of term three. I doubt if anyone at school did any work.
Gloria Meltzer, Chewton
Climate change strategy: lower the voting age.
Rodney Manning, Yarraville
No doubt Toby Greene will come out swinging on Saturday.
Philip West, Jan Juc
Now at stake, Victorian pride …and eyesight.
Darryl Annett, Northcote
Taylor Swift has been scratched from the Melbourne Cup where she would inevitably have lost on protest. All bets will be refunded.
Jon Smith, Leongatha
Dyson, I can’t stop laughing at your two-kilo mockingbird (21/9).
Dawn Evans, Geelong
Cyclists, paint a premiership cup on your helmets. Magpies will swoop but then veer away at the last minute.
William Matthewson, Doncaster East