HUGE congratulations to Joanne McCarthy for being recognised for her outstanding contribution to journalism at the Walkley Awards last week.
We honour and praise Joanne for all her many hard-working hours, which led to the exposure of one of the most hideous and cruel of crimes hiding behind the massive cloak of religion in many churches.
Joanne's exemplary and often mind-blowing revelations, finally stirred a response in thousands of "closed minds in hundreds of clergies". It also brought about a new clarity in the minds of many dedicated parishioners who, after the initial shock, pain and suffering, found they could suddenly get answers to questions often pushed aside by fear. Suddenly they were free to think for themselves and not be bound by their many years of mystical slavery, taught from childhood, by people, in whom they were convinced were not only true believers, but honest and completely trustworthy family friends.
Amazing reporting, and thanks again Joanne.
Robyn Single, Mount Hutton
Relentless work applauded
I HAVE been fortunate on several occasions to hear or meet Joanne McCarthy and I am a great admirer.
The article "McCarthy hails the women who overcame the 'boys club" (Herald, 25/11) brought back many memories for me, and I want to hail Joanne herself. Much can be said about this fabulous lady, but I believe that Chad Watson, ACM head of publishing, said it best when he described her as "fearless, highly principled and relentless". There must have been many times when greater powers such as the Catholic Church appeared to prevail, but she fought on and never never quit.
Thank you, Joanne, for your tireless service to Australian investigative journalism. It won't say on your grave "by God she had wonderful clean venetians". You saw wrongs and tried to right them.
Denise Lindus Trummel, Newcastle
Rates impact no worry for some
IT seems the board members of the Reserve Bank (RBA) have little understanding of what really happens in today's fiscal society.
There are those who are wealthy. The interest rate will have virtually no effect on their lives as they will continue to have their hair cut, attend social functions, buy expensive items etc. Then there are those who are caught in between, not quite in the wealthy category but, while still going to the hairdresser, cut back on a number of items and play safe when it comes to watching their budgets. Finally, we have the strugglers who live from week to week, worrying whether or not they can pay the mortgage or have enough money to fill their car with petrol.
So who is causing the rise in inflation, the wealthy, the petroleum industry, banks or supermarkets, all of which are making record profits? Perhaps it is the hairdresser? So, as RBA chief Michele Bullock suggests, everyone should stop getting their hair cut so barbers and hairdressers go bankrupt.
It's time the government stood up to these overseas and partly Australian-owned companies and invoked a profit tax. When oil giant Shell makes its biggest profit in its history there is something wrong.
Alan Metcalf, Stockton
Nuclear energy the solution
ACCORDING to Energy Minister Chris Bowen, Australia gets the most sunlight in the world so we must go down the renewable path. But a quick check reveals that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) gets about 10 per cent more sunlight than Australia. The oil-rich UAE started to build nuclear power generators in 2012 and now have three generators in service with a fourth soon to be connected for a total of 5600 megawatts, all done in 10 years at a cost of $36.6 billion.
The UAE nuclear power plant is one and a half times the total output of the recently closed Liddell power station. The latest report from Net Zero Australia puts the cost of achieving net zero targets for 2033 (10 years) at $1.5 trillion, for which we could build 40 UAE power plants. Electricity from nuclear power plants would supply all our 24/7 electricity, lower power bills, provide more jobs through increased national productivity and achieve net zero emissions in a responsible and orderly manner. Not too difficult to work out.
John Cooper, Charlestown
Bright future beckons for today's students
WHAT a beaut front page showing two lucky, excited, St Philip's Christian College students and obviously future engineers ("Wired and racing", Newcastle Herald 23/11). I vividly remember my school days with metal work, with sheets of tin then soldering and lathe machining, also woodwork making small, useful household things and wood turning on a lathe if one was available. Basic stuff, but pales into insignificance to today's opportunities.
Brian Watson-Will, Corlette
Great support for 'people's pollie'
THANK you Donna Page and Sonia Hornery ("If MP is right CEO should lose job," Herald 25/11) for keeping this issue in the public's mind and preventing it from being buried. It will be a sad day for democracy in this region when the "people's pollie", Ms Hornery, retires.
Dave McTaggart, Edgeworth
Dead, buried and cremated
CONCERNED for my mental health, Alan Hamilton ("Referendum result is set in stone", Letters, 24/11), points out that the Voice is "dead, buried and cremated". I'm indebted to him for relieving me of the burden of false hope. My worst case scenario was that it was merely dead and buried, leaving open the remote possibility of a miraculous resurrection. But now I know there was a cremation after burial, I realise the game's up.
Michael Hinchey, New Lambton
Young voices raised
I AM so proud of all the schoolkids in our state and Victoria who marched in protest to support Palestinians. It showed courage, determination and the ability to think and act in unison outside the classroom. I am sure they learnt a lot during the process.
Julie Robinson, Cardiff
Horrible cycle continues
WE can block harbours that export coal and stop trains that carry coal, but I know of no politician at this time who can influence Mother Nature or tackle climate change. The 20th century English philosopher and Nobel Laureate, Bertrand Russell once said: "The secret of happiness is to face the fact that the world is horrible". Not much has changed, and too many nations are preoccupied with gaining power through military superiority to allow the wishes of a few well-meaning protesters to have any hope of success.
David Stuart, New Lambton
Hypocritical protest group
I AM a proud coal miner in the Lake Macquarie area. After watching the protesters at the weekend, I couldn't believe the amount of older/retired people there. Sure they paid 18 per cent interest rates for their homes, which they are quick to remind us about, but had the cheapest energy in the world thanks to the state-owned coal-fired power stations and coal mines in the Hunter. What gets me is now they're protesting about coal. Hypocrites. Seriously.
Dean Harris, Cardiff South
China's fruitful Friday
WELL the Black Friday sales will certainly boost the Chinese economy. It's hard to buy anything not made there.