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Be angry about this

Jacqueline Maley has drawn our attention to the relatively confected response by the PM to the Cartier watch affair (‘‘The relative value of outrage’’, Opinion, The Sunday Age, 25/10). It was a very animated Prime Minister, who claimed he was ‘‘appalled and shocked’’ and that it was a disgrace.

He should have been referring to the chronic neglect in aged care across the country. He should have been referring to our cruel treatment of asylum seekers in offshore detention. He should have been referring to the sports rorts under Bridget McKenzie or the Leppington Triangle land scandal.

Instead, he was taking aim at Australia Post and its CEO, Christine Holgate – a very easy target for his faux outrage.

There are bigger fish to fry, Prime Minister. There is so much more to be appalled and shocked about under your government’s watch.
Nick Toovey, Beaumaris

Refreshing candour
Al Morris’ comment that the ABC is seen as irrelevant is an inconvenient truth but correct (Letters, 28/10) and it was reported in The Sunday Age (25/10) that the ABC news boss, Gaven Morris, told a recent staff meeting that they were too focused on the interests of inner-city, left-wing elites.

Such candour from ABC management on its reporting bias is refreshing, but this has been known by many Australians for a long time. The issue now is can the ABC reform itself and become more relevant to the community.
Martin Newington, Aspendale

It works for me
The culture wars continue with Gaven Morris warning against a focus on left-wing, inner-city elites.

Just to be clear, I live in Eden, hardly the inner city. The ABC represents my views on a wide range of matters. I also disagree with some views expressed, but I know it is fair and balanced, as multiple reviews have clearly established. Morris would serve the ABC, the general public and listeners/viewers better by calling out the dodgy Coalition.
John Avent, Eden, NSW

They’re not helping
Nationals David Littleproud and Michael McCormack want banks to stop ‘‘virtue signalling’’ and leave ‘‘issues of policy and morality to the government’’ (‘‘ANZ carbon policy riles Nationals’’, The Age, 30/10).

The other side of that argument is that governments should take the lead in protecting citizens, by taking serious action to limit climate change, but the government isn’t leading so the private sector will. Complaining by the Nationals won’t help farmers in the long run.
Jane Lorimer, West Hobart, Tas.

Share your tips, please
So George Haritos admits that he socialised with James Pinder at horse races. He claims that the money he gave Mr Pinder was his share of the winnings from about two quadrellas a month.

Would he please give us his tips for Cup Day. After all the gloom of COVID-19, I am sure that would cheer us all up.
Christine Hurwood, Newport

We need this now
Many thanks to Stephen Charles for his well-considered article (‘‘An integrity commission is needed’’, Comment, 29/10).

It is refreshing to read an article that spells out, without fear or favour, why independent member for Indi Helen Haines’ motion for the establishment of a federal integrity commission is so vital.
It is interesting to read in one well-researched article the number of statements and decisions put forward by this government that would not pass investigation by such a commission.

Our thanks go to the member for Indi for introducing this bill, which many wish to see passed, and to Mr Charles, who insists such a commission must act without fear or favour.
Susan Campbell, Benalla

It’s a special effort
It’s been a nightmare time for those students in year 12 this year. I think it would be a worthwhile gesture from the government to award them a certificate quite different to any connected with school marks.

It could acknowledge the fact they have had to complete their schooling while a pandemic has disrupted it on a huge scale. In order to complete their 2020 studies they have had to demonstrate determination and resilience and the ability to work independently.

These young people should be congratulated and recognised as being a very attractive proposition to any workplace or for further study.
Rosemary Faris, Torquay

We’re ready to roll
It’s nearly the end of 2020, and I’m still waiting for some ‘‘20/20 vision’’ from the federal government.

If the best we are offered in the way of gender balance is the NSW Liberal Women’s Council’s Howard-era idea of a women’s impact statement for each budget item (‘‘Weighing up gender imbalance’’, Comment, 30/10), we already know where that road leads.

Yes, we’ve been told women benefit from driving on the roads built under the infrastructure allocation. Many women will be wondering how much longer we must wait for the government to venture into a braver new world where women’s needs are no longer just a half-hearted afterthought.

The policy roads have already been built: we’re ready to roll.
Jenifer Nicholls, Armadale

The time is now
I fully endorse the comments of your correspondents (Letters, The Age, 31/10). Rather than stubbornly persisting with badly outdated emissions and climate change policies, the Prime Minister should heed the near-unanimous call from his fellow Australians, and from all climate experts, to phase out fossil fuels in favour of renewable energy as quickly as reasonably possible.

Solar and wind energy are now cheaper than gas-derived energy and are on track to be cheaper than energy from coal. This is especially the case if the gas or coal-fired plants are new builds. And with the rapid advances being made in large storage battery technology, solar and wind will be at least as reliable as energy from fossil fuels.

Just look at the electricity market, Mr Morrison.
Douglas Mackenzie, Deakin, ACT

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