Steve, I’ve been reflecting on my response below and I …

Comment on Besieged businessman stands for zero tolerance but also calls for more ‘joy and laughter’ by Russell Guy.

Steve, I’ve been reflecting on my response below and I believe I can make it clearer. I said that “the real issue is local leadership” in bringing solutions to the social problems facing Alice Springs, but in clarification, the qualities of those who aspire to it, should bear closer examination.
It appears that you are concerned by the fact that you can’t consume alcohol whenever you want and that includes cheap liquor which has a high level of pure alcohol. As I understand it, the reasoning behind a floor price is to standardise the price per drink at around that of beer – a product medically deemed less harmful than cask wine or “tawny”, for example.
Your reasoning is that “a few” alcoholics have made this difficult and you wish to remove them by “zero tolerance, law and order” policing, thereby bringing them before the courts and prison system, with no stated policy on rehabilitation or child neglect.
You appear opposed to any other method, such as prevention by restricting access to liquor supply and wish to maintain a 24/7 approach to sales, despite the cost to the taxpayer.
Have I got that right?

Russell Guy Also Commented

Besieged businessman stands for zero tolerance but also calls for more ‘joy and laughter’
Yeah, good one, Steve. Remind me to watch Groundhog Day again, next time I run into you in the Mall.


Besieged businessman stands for zero tolerance but also calls for more ‘joy and laughter’
Steve, the name is Russell. You are so petty to introduce fried foods into the “logic” of excessive alcohol consumption and its ghastly contribution to inequality in this town. Let’s see your analysis of the economic costs and income management program. You’re on the side of anarchy and you can’t perceive that your policies create prohibition. You keep to the one trick of law and order and I’d reckon even the police are tired of it.


Besieged businessman stands for zero tolerance but also calls for more ‘joy and laughter’
Steve, thanks for continuing to ask questions about these complex social issues. There are five questions you’ve asked of me.
Individual freedoms are fine until they come up against legislation. “Judgmental group think” refers to those who vote for laws to remain. You can’t have it both ways.
Do you agree that sometimes we should relinquish an individual right for the good of the group?
This was the essence of tribal law and in many instances, it’s still obvious to those who have the eyes to see it in action around Central Australia. It’s called mateship in the way that it was originally forged in the bush, but it’s broken down in all societies now, for a number of sociological reasons. Selfishness is its adversary. Greed is its enemy. Accountability is a casualty.
Group accountability versus individual rights in this instance, is the right to consume alcohol at a responsible level. When it becomes irresponsible or excessive as it has, ‘responsible people’ are charged with an enquiry into why this may be so and our governments act on their reports or not, for the good of the people.
It seems to me that self-interest – individual rights at the expense of the group – is the quickest route to anarchy and that appears to be one of the sociological reasons for the breakdown in community mateship worldwide.
I have posted elsewhere that I don’t agree with the by-law that insists on property owners removing graffiti at their own expense, but I guess it depends on the magnitude of each case as to whether some just get on with it or not. I don’t understand Council reasoning behind it. Perhaps the Mayor of the CEO might comment?
Your question about your right to drink “tawny” 24/7 conflates the issue of a floor price with the need to supervise what is essentially a legal drug. I know this kind of statement may get up your nose, but it’s a fact. No other recreational drug is unsupervised and popular ones such as marijuana, ice, etc are illegal.
Hopefully, someone from the local People’s Alcohol Action Alliance (PAAC) who have chosen to make policy recommendations to Senate Committees, may answer you with a more informed response.
In accord with the research statistics that I’ve tried to present over past weeks, it’s my opinion that the current restricted access to “tawny, beer or cheap vodka” has produced an excessive consumption for which taxpayers, you and I, foot a hefty annual bill – not counting the cost of purchase or the profit made. Cost recovery is on its way, otherwise we’ll go broke in the lucky country one day. Some say, that we’re heading for moral bankruptcy as it is.
The real question which you raise is one of local leadership on responsible social policy for Alice Springs and I’m glad you do. A case can be argued that the “law abiding citizens” you speak of are responsible for “the few” not being able to hold their liquor and who may be drinking for different reasons than you. I think it’s more than a few, and that drinking amounts to high risk, excessive, harm-producing, consumption.
In the late 1970s, Prof. Colin Tatz described “drinking to oblivion” as drinking to forget. When you live and work amongst alcoholics as I do on a daily basis, you see the need for patient care and the truth of his statement.
This morning, I was forced to literally be a nurse bringing a cup of herbal tea to an 65 year old frail, talented woman and a peacemaker to an older woman who’d fallen foul of a store official. Sometime, today I have to apologise to a man who I was short with yesterday. He is a reforming alcoholic and I don’t want him to slip back to oblivion drinking just because I couldn’t take anymore. I’d really like it if you could see this through my eyes and help because some days, it’s too much.
Regarding welfare payment penalties. This is being trialled with truancy where children whose parent/s/guardian/s/carers are recipients. Since you raise it, my opinion is that, like zero tolerance law and order solutions, welfare withdrawal will penalise children and only drive alcoholism underground, creating a black market which is a reaction to prohibition.
Have you thought that the solutions you espouse create prohibition?
I believe that it would be preferable to further restrict or amend current restrictions to supply, so that all of us, primarily the police, can start to clean up the town and alcoholics receive the kind of care / tough love necessary to reform their lives. They need help as the Central Australian Aboriginal Congress (CAAC) has advised, to at least, manage their money.
I suggest that one outcome will be a wider business prosperity, a return to productivity / job placement and lives lived in equality.


Recent Comments by Russell Guy

Torrent of toxic Facebook posts after Mall melee
@ Eugene’s Mate. Posted July 15, 2018 at 6:42 pm.
Thanks, “Eugene’s Mate”, for standing on Sue and my shoulders and posting your information, which I’d like to believe is informed and reliable, but I haven’t failed to realise anything about the Gunner Government’s intentions.
In fact, I have made a point of supporting their alcohol reform.
I’m glad that “most other NT Cabinet members share this analysis”. I’m not cynical in doubting that they are taking the initiative.
I’m also glad that you share my analysis of frustrated motivation. I worked for decades with youth, both when I was one and more recently. It’s not rocket science, but please permit me to set you straight over your claim of “ignorant and patronising” suggestion.
You teeter on the edge of reason with the rest of your post in terms of the art gallery / culture centre and the government’s consultation process.
I’m also not sure what you mean about Mr Shiell’s failure to see that the gallery should be at “the heart of the town”. As far as I understand, a section of the Aboriginal community have suggested it be south of the Gap, which aligns with his suggestion.
Thanks for the directional inspiration.


Torrent of toxic Facebook posts after Mall melee
@ Sue Fielding. Posted 14/7/18. 8:46AM: In my opinion you have correctly identified generational trauma, racism, alcohol abuse and domestic violence as some of the reasons for anti-social behavior among the young people responsible.
Anger and frustration are two of the motivational issues, apart from mindless vandalism which is existential for many kids. I did it occasionally at that age, without really knowing why.
With regard to “the support and social cohesion necessary for them to make a way forward (in 2 world’s), into education, jobs, a stable life”, you are essentially discussing giving them direction.
Motivating the kids to take an interest in their surroundings (town) begins in family life and then in the school environment, but when this is dysfunctional, then special treatment is warranted as is the case with case management, but more than one-on-one is required, because that only attends to the electrons whizzing around the nucleus.
Perhaps, the kids sense that the town lacks direction.
Who could blame them for reacting the way they are out of frustration?
If you look at the local economy as tourist-based, at least for six months of the year, then getting kids focussed on how they might contribute to that opportunity through education, innovation and the kind of ideas which Trevor Shiels often posts at this site, e.g., Yirara students training for the proposed art gallery and/or a culture centre, then perhaps that could be a direction.
The problem, as I see it, is that Mr Shiels’ posts often seem to go unremarked.
You call for local MPs and Alice to focus, along with the support providers. All of this appears to lack direction.
Alice Springs is a town that has the makings of a recovery, but without the ability to help itself out of the problem.
Could this be a form of self-inflicted vandalism brought about by ennui, i.e, stunned like the rabbit in the headlights?
Maybe, it’s a Pavlovian impotence, where the dog keeps getting an electric shock, but doesn’t want to or can’t get out of the box?
Perhaps, Alice as a town is the Pavlovian dog.
It will keep on receiving these toxic social shocks as long as it lacks direction, or the will to get out of the box.


At last, public will get a say on Anzac Oval: Town Council
@ Maya. Posted 26th June. 7:16pm.
The Property Council of Australia recently commissioned a report which examines the future of Australian cities. It has been reviewed as applying equally to Sydney as to a country shire in the outback.
It’s basic premise seems to be the creation of “mini-CBD’s” over the usual model of one CBD, but the interesting thing about the second volume of the three volume report is how it charts employment growth in GDP per capita.
The take-home bit for me is that limiting the planning (?) of Alice Springs to a single CBD concept over the creation of mini-CBD’s, limits employment opportunity, e.g., transport between them is an obvious one.
Alice Springs is set up for such a vision, with some of the points you make, but with many more outlying.
It may allow for diversification and reduce the focus of social unrest on the present CBD, which seems resistant to change or reform.
The challenge might be to link them into a coherent town plan that has a future outside of the narrow confines of the present.


Indigenous gallery location done and dusted, says Lambley
@ Trevor Shiell. Posted 22nd June. 4:24pm.
The Stockman’s Hall of Fame and the Qantas Founder’s Museum in Longreach are kilometres from the CBD, but the Town Council has had to build an additional caravan park on the river because, in peak season, the others are full.
The new dinosaur park in Winton is out of town.
Probably because they build the town in the wrong place back then.
If only they’d known.
Some people have been calling for a Town Plan in Alice for years, but have given the game away and it’s easy to see why.
Even you have expressed this Yirara idea several times.
Ever get the feeling you’re a cracked record?
Actually, ‘blessed are the cracked for they shall let in a little light.’


Pine Gap’s new role as a war fighting command centre
Redundancy in the use of GPS technology, especially in relation to aviation and weather forecasting, is vital, but who knows how many satellites there are, which ones are kaput and which are fully functional for commercial or military purposes?
So many of us take satellite-based technology for granted in our daily lives, more especially as cyber warfare, recently exposed as influencing Australian elections, becomes a hot-button issue for the democratic world.
In those terms, Pine Gap is a significant asset, although, I note that Professor Blaxland is an academic from the ANU which recently rejected a fully-funded scholarship program for studies in Western Civilisation, while hosting similar programs from Asian and Islamic sources.


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