AT international gatherings such as the G7, Australia is now routinely described as "isolated" on climate change. Scott Morrison seems unconcerned. He has no doubt calculated there is still enough domestic political mileage in being a maverick. However if, as seems likely, more and more countries impose "carbon border tariffs", the prime minister's resolve, such as it is, will quickly evaporate. It's one thing to say we're not going to be pushed around by other countries; it's quite another to explain to our own industries why they're being pushed out of their overseas markets.
The justification for such tariffs appears irrefutable. Carbon price schemes are designed to act as an incentive for industries to innovate in low-emission technologies and processes. The incentive fails if chain-draggers such as Australia, which have no carbon price, are allowed to undercut local producers with their "carbon heavy" imports.
It needn't have come to this, but if tariffs are the only way to force us to pull our weight, bring them on.
Michael Hinchey, New Lambton
Don't evoke woke as a negative
JOHN Tierney ("New 'dark age' in woke warriors' lesson plan", Opinion 16/6) disappoints me. I am used to him presenting a balanced view of topics which he discusses, but on this occasion he falls back on all the biased reactions to a curriculum change which must come if we are to honour the First Nations people of our great country. If he understands as I do the meaning of 'woke' as being "awareness of issues that concern social and racial justice," then I would hope that he would be an enthusiastic supporter.
Like him I come from a long tradition of teachers and advocates for a better world, but I want to see the contemporary school curriculum reflect the changes we have thankfully seen in the way Indigenous and all non-Anglo children are respected in the classroom. The draft presented by ACARA does not neglect the rich traditions which European settlers have brought, but tries to balance it with a better understanding of the impact which the settlers made on the culture of the 300 nations which populated the country which was theirs before 1788. They rightly see the arrival of the First Fleet as an invasion of their land.
How many people from the Awabakal and Worimi nations did Mr Tierney consult before writing his column? They may have given him a different perspective.
Doug Hewitt, Hamilton
What would you do in their shoes?
GREAT news to hear the Tamil family will once again be reunited. But sad to hear they will still not be returned to their safe haven in Biloela ('No end in sight to Biloela family plight', Newcastle Herald 16/6).
It's also very sad for little Tharnicaa who may be in hospital for eight weeks, as her illness was very severe. I believe this was caused by Mr Dutton who dragged them out of their haven to make an example of them to stop people smugglers sending them on boats to our shores.
What a joke. We didn't even know they were living in Biloela until they were put in front of the media all over Australia for brownie points for himself. The family was actually living, working, and very involved in Biloela community events, just like all the people in the community.
To me they are definitely refugees, as they escaped a regime that put Priya's fiance to death by burning him while he was still alive. Wouldn't you do anything to escape such a regime? Finally, some LNP government members spoke out to let the family go back to Biloela, which goes against the LNP stance on asylum seekers. So there is still a bit of humanity in the LNP.
As this LNP government has been in full election mode for about six months be very careful about their promises, because the chance of them carrying out their promises seems about a big fat zero.
Margrietha Owens, Cardiff
The rules exist for a reason
ALL the bleeding hearts sending letters regarding the Tamil family wanting to remain in Australia. They turned up as individuals illegally, married and had two children. They were offered if they returned home and filled in the proper documents (as you have to do to enter any country) they would be back within six months.
Every year we send back many people who have not gone through the proper channels. I believe the people smugglers are waiting eagerly for a decision from our government to restart their human trafficking.
Don Fraser, Belmont North
Word up, language is changing
I AM no authority, but yes, I am sometimes pedantic.
Have the rules of the English language changed so much since I was at school some 75 years ago? Or is it now a matter of, common usage reigns?
When comparing things, the rule was "compared with" not ''compared to''. Also if an article was different the rule was "different from" not "different to". Now the letter "H" is pronounced aitch, not haitch, please. A "haven" is "safe'' so no need to put "safe" in front of it.
Whatever happened to "who" when referring to a person or to people it is "who", not "that"? It was Jack and Jill "who'' went up the hill", not Jack and Jill "that" went up the hill. It is Jane "who" danced, not it is Jane "that" danced. If a person is missing, say so, not that they have "gone" missing. Joe Blow is missing, or has been missing since... or has been reported missing, but not that he has "gone" missing.
"Got" is an overused, ugly word and is in many instances not needed. I "have" a pencil, not I "have got" a pencil. Do you "have" an apple, not "have you got" an apple? ''Got" can be replaced with numerous alternative words such as; have, received, been given, arrived, inherited, was awarded; the choice is endless. I have "got" to go, why not "I have to go" or "I must go"?
Which brings me to "like" when "such as" is more appropriate.
Judith Delbridge, Warners Bay
War effort doesn't run on rails
I WAS interested to read Peter Sansom's article (Letters 10/6) about, in the event of hostilities with China, we are unprepared for such an event because of the lack of logistics; getting troops, munitions and equipment from one part of our country to another.
It hadn't occurred to me until I read Mr. Sansom's article that the best way to achieve the transport of heavy machinery, is to rail it. So, an underground rail network was built between Australia and Kabul via Baghdad. How else could all this heavy machinery be transported to these far-off places?
First, if a rail network were to be built within Australia, decisions would need to be made as to where from and to. Also, this network would need to be built underground. If it is built on the surface, it would be so easy for our adversaries to do a bombing run to take out several sections of track so as to render it inoperative.
There are lots of things to think about here. I wonder what guidance Mr. Sansom could offer the government with regard to the rail infrastructure.
Les Field, Wickham
THE 7am radio news bulletin this morning announced the state government wants to spend another $400 million on a museum bringing the total to $1.3 billion, if I heard correctly. Wouldn't this money be better spent on a powerhouse that actually generates power?
Gary Loston, Fern Bay
IT was a privilege watching Kurt Fearnley's interview with Ash Barty on the ABC. Ash is such a natural person who came across to Kurt's questions so easily. I'm sure that this was typical of this special role model, so proudly Australian.
Daphne Hughes, Kahibah
SENTIMENT should not dictate our border policies. Is this couple the same one who were rejected by the courts a few times (maybe four times) before they had children ('No end in sight to Biloela family plight', Newcastle Herald 16/6)? Is the media leading this cry to keep this couple? I would like some honesty here. I am sick and tired of the media making hysterical emotional headlines. How many people in their town actually know them?
Kate Bow, Wallsend
Lloyd Davies, I think someone forgot to tell the weather about this myth you refer to, and I think Steve Barnett can read graphs. Aren't form guides for horse racing a graph?
Matt Ophir, Charlestown
PETER Brewer's article, ("Crime rates are suspected to spike as cut supply lines force up drug prices", Herald, 12/6), details drug use in Australia, with the amounts of cocaine and ecstasy consumed, but what really blew my mind was the 11.1 million tonnes of methamphetamine in one year. I bet they are importing on bulk carriers.
Vic Davies, Tighes Hill
ONE man alone can change the fate of the Biloela prisoners. That man is Morrison. Maybe we should turn up at the Hillsong Church and start pointing him out.
Gary Hayward, Cardiff
COULD we please stop referring to Nathan Tinkler as "Mining Magnate" and call him what he is: "electrician who invested in mining and lost"?
Leigh Gibbens, Stockrington
WHEN it is all said and done the American ego is reluctant to accept a loss in any competitive arena.
Richard Jenkins, Stockton
NOTE to the so-called rulers of this world: "you should share a common grave, and the epitaph should read 'depravity paved our way',".
Niko Leka, Mayfield
STEVE Barnett, (Short Takes, 14/6), not at my place mate, it's bloody freezing here. Haha.