IT seems Peter Sansom is a great observer of life in Newcastle ("There's little joy in Honeysuckle", Letters, 25/6). In his letter, he makes the following points: lots of traffic in King Street but not in any other street; very few pedestrians on the footpaths; so few people travelling in the trams; worrying number of empty shops; a contradiction regarding how our transport infrastructure will cope as the city's construction increases; 30k/h speed limit in Honeysuckle Drive/Wharf Rd; Honeysuckle apartment blocks right on the water will be the only ones with a harbour view, and lamenting the removal of the heavy rail into Newcastle.
It seems Mr Sansom doesn't much like Newcastle anymore. He pines for Newcastle from 60 years ago.
The heavy rail has gone from Newcastle, and it ain't coming back.
Get used to it and move on.
I don't know where he visited when he was here last week, but he probably didn't walk along the waterfront walk or at Nobbys beach or Shortland Esplanade. If he had, he would have encountered many people enjoying a leisurely stroll.
There are always people congregating around the cafes at Newcastle beach also. If it makes some feel better to have a whinge, then count me out.
I live right in the middle of all the high-rise buildings at Wickham.
If I want to go to the city, I walk around the corner and catch a tram. I love living here.
Leslie Field, Wickham
Lessons for Labor
I THINK it is probably clear to the Labor Party by now that, if it wishes to retain the seat of Hunter in the coming election, it needs to hurry up and find a replacement for Joel Fitzgibbon. In my opinion his adoption of pseudo National Party policies will not convert any National voters. All that he has achieved in the past year in my opinion is to alienate Labor supporters.
The party should, however, beware of a takeover attempt by its Right faction, as happened in the case of Jodi McKay. This is a left-leaning region, where the Labor Right is in bad odour. When Jodi was parachuted in, the Newcastle branch of the Labor Party was almost annihilated through a combination of defections, resignations, and expulsions. One election later, Labor lost an unloseable seat, one that Bryce Gaudry had always held with a massive majority. I believe recruiting another McKay or Fitzgibbon would be a backwards step.
Peter Moylan, Glendale
Risk is clear to all, but what now?
CIAN Hussey of the Institute of Public Affairs says their research shows 653,600 jobs are at risk if Australia commits to a net zero emissions target ('Joyce returns the mic to quiet Australians', Opinion 26/6).
I wonder how impartial their 'research' actually is. The IPA has many fiercely capitalist, right-wing policies it wants the federal government to implement including withdrawal from the Paris agreement, holding a royal commission into the Bureau of Meteorology's tampering with temperature and climate data (a BOM conspiracy allegation invented by the IPA), abolish the Renewable Energy Target, end all subsidies to wind, solar, and hydro-electricity generators, and, legalise nuclear power in Australia. It's no surprise then at the IPA's 'shock' result to jobs. Mr Hussey, we all know fossil fuel jobs are "at risk" from the march of market forces - that's why most of us are pleading for immediate political leadership to manage the change for our miners and communities. The dubious 653,600 jobs number is a big one but the health and lives of 25 million Australians is an even bigger one if our government ignores the science and consequences of climate change.
John Arnold, Anna Bay
Barnaby can't be brake on climate
THE return of Barnaby Joyce as Nationals leader is going to be a climate problem for Prime Minister Morrison and the Liberal Party. After all, the recent Lowy Institute's Climate Poll showed that 78 per cent of Australians wanted a net-zero emissions target for 2050. Yet the climate-denying Nationals consistently demand they want no targets for action on climate. The Liberal Party needs to be careful not to risk getting rejected from highly concerned climate voters from both regional and suburban seats in the next federal election. There are many of us, myself included, who will cast our votes in the ballot box for the party with the strongest action plan on climate.
Ching Ang, Kensington Gardens
Educate before you enforce rules
FURTHER to Brian Hammond's "Fine's can't beat finesse of tests" (Herald, 28/6), I think no one should be allowed to hold a licence unless they take the drivers written test every two to three years, allowing new road rules to be introduced and learned.
When I was a tacker, in the 1970s, the local RTA in Lismore had two spare computers sitting on a counter where people could take, and retake, the written part of the drivers test while waiting to be called to the counter. Unfortunately it seems that the state government would prefer to fine drivers instead of educating them, considering the huge rise in the number of speeding fines that the government is currently raking in now that speed cameras are not announced and/or hidden from drivers.
While we have all been guilty of speeding at one time or another, I think it is tough cheese to the foolish speeders who are caught as, after all, they were speeding.
It is only education that will, eventually, change drivers' thinking, not massive fines.
Jim Ryan, Merewether
Concussion risk is here to stay
CONCUSSION has long been a concern of the medical profession in Rugby League. In the mid 1970s Dr Hugh Hazard, the then Canterbury doctor, worked with the club to introduce protocols for head injuries. When the Knights came into the competition doctors implemented protocols for head injuries. Dr Peter McGeoch and Dr Neil Halpin have continued to look after the Knights, introducing computerised recovery programs. With the help of neurologist Professor Chris Levi the Newcastle Rugby League introduced a program for all local teams, with special appointments for head injuries after the weekend of football. All clubs were given special contact details for the clinic.
Trevor Crow, the then chairman of Newcastle Rugby league, helped push forward this program over eight years ago. The Knights soon after joined the program.
The use of headgear has been shown to help with lacerations but is not likely to help with concussions as the problem is still present in American football even with helmets. League is a contact sport so you will always have injuries. With rule changes and medical intervention then long term damage can be diminished but not completely removed.
John Hollingsworth, Hamilton
RICHARD Ryan (Short Takes, 28/6) I wasn't aware of a flag being able to kill people before. If it wasn't for the Union Jack our flag would be red, white and blue, we would be singing the Marseillaise, be eating snails and frogs legs, and not be able to enjoy the wonderful game of cricket! But that's what you maybe would prefer?
Greg Hunt, Newcastle West
HOARDERS of toilet paper should check the use by date on the packs before it runs out after a short shelf life time. Is it or is it not a recycled product as well?
John Bradford, Beresfield
I RECOMMEND that a lot of people should lay off our young Benny Simmons. If the player's only fault is a lot of missed free throws, I'd be asking the referee why they are consistently occurring.
Dave Wilson, Bar Beach
I WONDER if all the people that are objecting to the use of coal fired power stations for our base load power are pointing to Europe to support their claim that renewable power is the way to go. Do they realise that their base load power comes from nuclear power? In fact, France obtains up to 78 per cent of its power from nuclear power and any country that has gone from coal for its power has gone to nuclear power.
Bruce Brander, Belmont
SATURDAY night at approximately 8 pm I visited a Newcastle fast food outlet and asked if they were checking ID to ensure no one from Greater Sydney was entering. The response was no they were not; they were only ensuring that patrons wore a mask. That worries me.
John Dickenson, Newcastle West
I JUST don't get it. I've changed the nozzles on my garden hose three times and I still can't get my broadband any quicker. Maybe I need to change the hose too.
Barry Reed, Islington
MICHAEL Gormly (Short Takes, 26/6) raises an interesting point: have those who are "piling on" (his words) Bruce Pascoe over Dark Emu actually read the book, or the book that they are relying on for their pile on? The latter was only released a week or so ago; I am still waiting for my pre-ordered copy to arrive. I look forward to reading it and hopefully being in a position to pass some sort of judgment on Pascoe's scholarship. However I would suggest that those who want to weigh in do a bit more reading before they hit the keyboard. The Biggest Estate on Earth by Bill Gammage and the just-released Design - Building on Country by Alison Page and Paul Memmott are good starting points. The first provides persuasive evidence of agricultural practices and animal husbandry by First Nations people, the second looks at how these people adapted their architecture and building design.
John Ure, Mount Hutton
NO way do we need to have football here on Thursday night. There is no way we can control the people who will come here. It only takes one to test positive and we will be locked down. The NRL doesn't run this state. This game should not take place.