Once again those of us in Alice Springs with eyes …

Comment on Nose-diving CBD: it happened on the 11th Council’s watch by Hal Duell.

Once again those of us in Alice Springs with eyes to read and a computer to read from owe our thanks to the Alice Springs News. The above is the most perceptive critique of our 11th Council that I have read.
From my seat in the gallery during both Committee and Ordinary meetings, I would add only one word: Bullying.
There has been bullying during the life of this Council to such an extent that at one point I asked during Public Question Time if Council would consider passing a motion forswearing the practice in its public meetings. There was an initial positive reaction, but the idea soon died when the conversation moved behind closed doors.
They have loved to close those doors. Usually the reasons cited are either that the matter being discussed concerns an employee, or that the matter is commercial in confidence. While I usually agree with the first, I always wonder at the second. And what I wonder goes something along the lines of once the money trail has been obscured, is anything left but trivial pursuit?
It becomes far too easy to assert that all is progressing swimmingly.
Four of our current Aldermen have nominated to become Councillors in the 12th Alice Springs Town Council. I hope two of them are successful.
I’ll go out on a limb here and predict that our next Mayor will be either Steve Brown or Damien Ryan. But whoever it is I beg of you to do two things – become fully conversant with Standing Orders and foreswear leading from the chair.

Recent Comments by Hal Duell

Town council denies blocking new servos
Just a question, but can council block these developments? I thought development consent came from Darwin.


Pine Gap and the Nobel prize the Oz government ignores
Thank you, Russell, for sharing your family’s history. Your grandfather showed great foresight in first getting out of Germany and, later, moving to Australia.
Back to the present, and while I repeat that the Nobel Peace Prize being given to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons came as a most welcome bolt out of the blue, I can see one big problem in trying to implement its agenda.
Looking at the world today, the hot wars are being waged against countries without nuclear capabilities. These are mostly across the Middle East and in north and sub-saharan Africa. No one is seriously contemplating starting a hot war against countries with a nuclear deterrent, whether they be the big three of Russia, China and the USA or the second tier countries of England, France, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel, blustering and posturing notwithstanding.
Looked at in this light, having nuclear weapons makes good sense. Would that it were not so, but, unfortunately, it is.


Pine Gap and the Nobel prize the Oz government ignores
@Steve Brown
Posted October 17, 2017 at 6:28 pm
No argument with what you say about the war in the Pacific, but try as I might, I cannot place that theatre between Japan and Germany.
I can, however, place Mao’s Eighth Route Army there, but if we are to look at that it would mean opening a whole new chapter into who did what in WWII.
As to stability, the Korean war waged from 1950 to the present day has not brought stability, the war in Vietnam did not bring stability, the current kerfuffle in the South China Sea is not bringing stability and the annual Talisman Sabre is not bringing stability.
However, Nixon’s visit to China in 1972 did open a road to stability, but that was an exercise in diplomacy, not sabre rattling.


Pine Gap and the Nobel prize the Oz government ignores
An interesting comment below that the only thing standing between Russell’s father and the Japanese was the strength and commitment of the USA.
It might be more accurate to say that the only thing standing between Russell’s father and the Japanese was the Soviet army.
The Wehrmacht was broken at the battle of Stalingrad (today’s Volgograd), not on the beaches of Normandy, an inconvenient truth, but the truth nonetheless.


Pine Gap and the Nobel prize the Oz government ignores
Being in my own way an optimist, when Trump was elected President of the US I had hopes that he really would get out of foreign wars, make nice with Russia and rebuild America’s crumbling infrastructure. Instead he seems to be locked into waging yet more wars, demonising Russia and destroying infrastructure (and how many lives and hopes and dreams?) in other lands.
Foolish me!
But there may still be a silver lining to the cloud of Trump’s presidency. All over the world people are waking up to the real and present danger of anyone, let alone an unstable person, having nuclear codes at his command.
And he is hardly alone in the unstable stakes. Can anyone really find reason to hope when looking at the antics of Kim in North Korea or Netanyahu in Israel?
The recent Nobel Peace Prize came as a bolt out of the blue. Hopefully it will not be an isolated and forgotten moment of sanity in a world with an increasingly desperate need of sanity.


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