You are both dead right, Stevie and Jan. It’s time …

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

You are both dead right, Stevie and Jan. It’s time for the Action Heroes and Little Hitlers. Send in the Clowns. I’ve taken your advice to heart and ordered myself a new clown suit and truncheon, a tazer and a magic wand. You take the high road, I’ll defend my house. Please ask Murray where he got that last lot of wacky pills. They are working so well.

Bob Durnan Also Commented

Besieged businessman stands for zero tolerance but also calls for more ‘joy and laughter’
An epitaph: Steve Brown, the Last Action Hero.
“In order to save his town, he believed he first had to destroy it.”
First, he would invite everybody who felt inclined to do so to drive early and drive free: Why should a minority who would risk driving over their kids and slaughtering defenceless pensioners get in the way of free-wheeling funsters enjoying their inalienable rights to drive as and where and when they themselves saw fit?
His argument was long and complicated but there was an underlying principle to it all. You cannot take the wellbeing of the weak, the kids, the victims, the taxpayers, the service providers or the community into account when free individualistic citizens are exercising their God-given narcissistic rights to do what they damned well feel like in the Nanny Car State! There has been far too much paternal interference in drivers’ and passengers’ lives, and far too much use of the Law in an attempt to force decisions that community-minded licensed drivers, helmeted bicyclists and plodding pedestrians want, such as adhering to speed limits, driving on the left side of the road, wearing seat belts, stopping at stop signs, observing road rules, registering cars, taking out third party insurance, and even obtaining drivers’ licences, as opposed to the individual’s choice to do stupid risky things; and nowhere nearly enough influence used, through psychotropic drugs, electric shock therapy, wistfulness, hypnotism and threats of long solitary imprisonment, or even execution, to shine the light on another choice; nowhere near enough effort spent on creating better pathways, improving lives creating expectations of something more fulling than driving you life away.

At the moment if you’re an angry young petrol head you can purchase a turbo-charged car as a legal product, legally within the prescribed rules whenever you choose yet we make it really difficult for them to drive their legally purchased product legally in an unrestricted dangerous manner. Their attempts to do so often end in the humiliating disrespectful seizure of their legally purchased product in the police lockup yard. This results in very real anger and desire to “pay back”! It also causes ever deepening divisions in our society as it only ever appears to be cops’ hands in their faces.

I am not arguing for a free for all on hooning. I don’t like to see our streets full of hoons, I don’t like to see the wasted lives, the battered and homeless kids. I am horrified by the endless misery and want to bring it to an end as quickly as that can be achieved. What I am saying is that we have gone the wrong way! The present approach is a disaster of horrifying proportions. We’ve created enormous anger, separation and a never ending desire to drive hotted up jalopies recklessly and bash our heads in retaliation.

We’ve succeeded in criminalizing half the population, with people being quite angry enough to do whatever it takes to drive what they want when they want. My argument is to stop making sanctimonious decisions on others’ behalf, get out of their faces, allow them to make their own choices, take the heat, the anger out of the situation. Let’s return to the situation we had years ago, we still had a lot of hoons, but they were happy petrol heads who said “gidday mate” when trashing you on the streets.

Let’s recognise and respect every hoon’s individual rights, their equality! Let’s make a start on the long slow process of teaching hoons a better way, by encouraging them to rage wild and free, unencumbered by “road rules” because we care about their individual well-being not just the prettiness of our streets. We can begin this climb to sanity by normalising hooning, getting rid of restrictions that divide or cause mass binge hooning, make available areas where people can legally hoon under influence of moderate alcohol and police those areas heavily for bad behaviour, immediately remove any drunk hoon from our roads, otherwise leave them be. Pretty soon you’ll see the heat recede from the streets and we can concentrate our energies on the bigger goals.


Besieged businessman stands for zero tolerance but also calls for more ‘joy and laughter’
Steve (@Posted March 13, 2012 at 6:34 pm):
You mean start executing people?
Or just building more gaols so you can lock more people up for longer for doing things that they mainly would not have done if they had not been able to get so drunk?
Do you have any idea about how much we taxpayers would have to pay for this? Any upper figure in mind? Or the sky is the limit?
NB Regular periods in gaol are not deterring a lot of people at present – it seems to be a better lifestyle than what many have access to outside gaol. Aboriginal men in gaol in the NT are healthier and less likely to die or be injured, and more likely to learn some skills. Simply locking these people up more often is not going to achieve the changes in behaviour that we all want to see.


Besieged businessman stands for zero tolerance but also calls for more ‘joy and laughter’
It is interesting to see that Geoff Booth, the proprietor of several venues which depend almost entirely upon alcohol sales for their existence, sees the future of Alice Springs as being dependent on the population learning to have fun without alcohol (presumably at least partly at rate payers’ expense) and remote Aboriginal communities becoming hosts to alcohol outlets (presumably at least partly at tax payers’ expense).
Perhaps Geoff could put his money where his mouth is, and make Sundays alcohol-free, low-cost, family fun days at his venues, and challenge his fellow licencees (especially the two pubs which make a mint on Sundays selling take-away alcohol) to match him.
If he wanted to really help Alice Springs, he could create suitable conditions, with relatively low priced (in terms of on-licence charges per drink) alcohol beverages, to attract into his venues the impoverished drinkers who are currently being policed out of the riverbeds, public places, social housing and town camps where they consume cheap take-away alcohol.
Geoff could also check out the research literature concerning the documented impacts of alcohol outlets in remote Aboriginal communities.
He would find that the normal result of a remote alcohol licence is not less problems in the regional centres such as Alice Springs, but that it does lead to a near doubling of the numbers of both habitual and casual drinkers in the remote community, greatly increasing social, education, health and employment problems in the communities, whilst the rate of visitations by drinking parties to the regional centres, and associated harms and problems, remains about the same.
We should all be careful when proposing alcohol reforms, to be guided by the principal that what we do should not cause any more harms than are already occurring.


Recent Comments by Bob Durnan

Elferink and Gooda clash over underage marriage
Peter, Posted June 30, 2017 at 2:30 pm: some young girls may resist promised marriage more strongly these days, but I doubt whether some are in a position to do so.
It has been authoritatively reported by youth workers in Alice Springs and Tennant Creek in the last few years that rape of young women is rife in these towns.


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Does anybody know if the hours when the Arrernte words teaching program is held at the Apmere angkentye-kenhe are available somewhere on the net, or anywhere else?
I thought I had seen it advertised for every Wednesday night at 6pm, but this doesn’t appear to be the case?
I have gone there at this time, found it closed, and no notice or info on the door.
Anybody wanna clarify here?


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Alex, of course one part-time worker with CAALAS is not able to, in your words, “work closely with EVERY SINGLE young person going throughout Central Australian court system, their family, community, lawyer, school and other service-providers to provide the young person with the support they need to get back on track and stay out of trouble”.
That is exactly my point, and why it is wrong for you to lay the blame on that worker, as you did when you wrote “if your PART-TIME advocacy programme co-ordinator did her job after this child’s court appearance in March, then he wouldn’t have appeared in court again in May.”
As I said earlier: That advocacy programme co-ordinator performed her job with great diligence and dedication, and cannot be held to blame for any alleged failure of duty of care, as the case load of such cases far exceeds the ability of one worker to cover even a small proportion of them. She was doing her job very well, covering as many of the cases as she could, but she wasn’t a magician. So your cheap jibe at her reputation is wrongly placed, and you should withdraw it.


Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
Evelyne Roullet, Posted June 22, 2017 at 1:42 pm: Ralph was not talking about where or how the kid should be housed. He was referring to the bigger issue of the huge trauma in his life, caused by the alleged killing of his mother by his father. Kids who experience this level of trauma need intensive help and support, and we need to make sure that they get it, from wherever it may be best available.


Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
Alex, on June 22, 2017 at 11:44 am you said, and I quote: “If your PART-TIME advocacy programme co-ordinator did her job after this child’s court appearance in March, then he wouldn’t have appeared in court again in May.”
So you cast an aspersion on her. It is entirely unwarranted.
Don’t wriggle out, apologise.


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