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Hit them where it hurts
The effective dismissal of Rio Tinto chief Jean-Sebastien Jacques and two senior executives is a minimal punishment for the destruction of the Juukan Gorge caves. It may be assumed they will leave with hefty payouts and get equivalent jobs elsewhere soon.
A more appropriate response would be based on the $135 million worth of ore freed up by the blasting. Fine Rio Tinto $135 million and use the money to set up a body to protect Aboriginal legacy and culture in Australia.
That would send a signal to other extractive industries that they will never profit from such extreme vandalism.
Owen Rye, Boolarra South
Where will they end up?
Would it have taken this long for ‘‘heads to roll’’ at Rio Tinto had the destruction been wrought on the Lascaux caves in France?
And, to which nice job will those heads roll?
Gary Sayer, Warrnambool
Not feeling confident
Our health leaders try to assure us hospitals are safe places to visit with respect to COVID-19 – ‘‘Concern as Victorians stay away from emergency departments’’ (The Age, online, 11/9).
These promises ring hollow after my experience at the emergency department of a major public hospital in Melbourne’s south-east less than three weeks ago.
While my son received excellent medical care, I was alarmed at conditions in the triage area. Patient numbers appeared to significantly exceed one person per four square metres – the hospital later confirmed they were supposed to abide by this rule.
Hand sanitiser was not easy to find either. My local supermarket does a better job of placing it where it practically impossible to miss. I also didn’t see any surface cleaners at work during the five hours we were at the hospital. Face masks to fit children weren’t available either.
If these shortcomings are so apparent to me, how can we be confident hospitals are doing everything they can to protect staff and the community?
With healthcare workers accounting for a frightening proportion of Victoria’s current caseload, our family is hoping no further hospital visits are required.
Cathy van der Zee, Ashburton
Think of greater good
In all the comments lambasting Premier Daniel Andrews for the curfew (“Premier cops flak on rights”, The Age, 12/9), there seems to be a lack of real concern for citizens’ health.
Leaders should be working together more to stop the virus. I rather suspect Tim Wilson, in fabricating a human rights abuse over the issue, is trying to impress his more selfish constituents in Goldstein.
The Age recently reported a survey showing that more than 70 per cent of approximately 2000 respondents were in favour of Andrews’ handling of the pandemic.
The curfew is about to be eased and people should think of the greater good rather than push their individual barrows.
Jan Marshall, Brighton
Pipe down back there
Can the back-seat drivers please stop chanting ‘‘Are we there yet?’’
Everyone knows it doesn’t get you to your destination any faster, and it annoys the heck out of those on the same journey.
Linda Skinner, Mooroolbark
The curfew is working
In May this year 25 US cities imposed curfews. Scores of other cities around the world have done the same in recent months.
In fact many new curfews have been imposed after premature easing of restrictions, but in Victoria the curfew is regarded as an absolute ‘‘shocker’’ in some quarters.
Some radio talkback hosts can do little else but undermine the government’s efforts to reduce movement. In fact the monitoring of traffic flows has shown that the curfew has massively reduced movement around the city.
And of course this is the whole idea. Reduce unnecessary movement, and you reduce the the spread of the virus. It’s as simple as that.
The cheap shots from some areas of the media are despicable political opportunism. This behaviour won’t get us out of lockdown any faster and may actually do us harm.
Tim Mahar, Fitzroy North
It’s in the mail, really
I now know why Australia Post is in so much trouble.
I bought a small item online that was sent from NSW and after two weeks the item has been processed at the Sydney NSW facility, then at the Strathfield NSW facility, then at the Lidcombe NSW facility and it is on its way to (yes, you guessed it) the Chullora NSW facility before even crossing the border into Victoria.
We bought a book from Book Depository that only took seven days to get here from halfway across the world.
What a bureaucratic mess Australia Post is, the CEO and board should be shamed and sacked.
Michael Younes, Oakleigh
The supreme irony. Prime Minister Scott Morrison calls upon the Queensland Premier to show some compassion and allow an ACT woman to attend the funeral of her father while at the same time he is totally hard-hearted about keeping asylum seekers locked up for years on end with no release date in sight.
Yes, it was Father’s Day last Sunday for that poor woman, but it was Father’s Day for a lot of those refugees too.
Prime Minister, let’s see if you can show these asylum seekers some of that same compassion you call for.
Walter Valles, Clayton South
Trite and unhelpful
Anthony Albanese has suddenly coined the phrase “the Morrison recession” when referring to Australia’s economic fallout from the COVID-19 crisis.
How opportunistic, trite and unhelpful. The drag on the national economy is the outcome of not only the federal government’s decisions but also the decisions of individual state governments – with the biggest drag coming from decisions taken in Victoria.
George Greenberg, Malvern
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