After waiting over three weeks for a parcel that I …

Comment on Grog stats may be useless as they do not include online and mail orders by Hal Duell.

After waiting over three weeks for a parcel that I had been assured had been sent, and after e-mailing the company who had sent it to double check, I asked at the post office hatch if perhaps the notification card had gone missing. I was told they were a fortnight behind in their deliveries, but they were doing all they could to clear the backlog.
Then in today’s newspaper I read a letter from another Name Withheld telling of a similar plight.
So here’s my question: Is Australia Post suffering from a staff shortage, has there been an unusually heavy influx of normal parcels or is the delay down to grog deliveries?
Just how much booze is coming in on the mail plane? Tons of the stuff as Cr Heenan asserts, or negligible as Bob Durnan seems to think?
And is there anyone left who still thinks we don’t have a grog problem?
There are no mail deliveries on Sundays, so let’s close the bottle shops on that day to give ourselves a day off. It won’t cost a cent. Too easy.

Hal Duell Also Commented

Grog stats may be useless as they do not include online and mail orders
All this online buying of grog is beginning to tell an interesting story.
To buy online, a credit card is necessary, something not so easy to get and even less easy to keep without more-or-less permanent employment. It seems more and more of Alice’s residents are using this procedure to access their alcohol.
This change in retail buying then seems to mean that the bottle shops are increasingly catering to those riding the dole train – cue in urban drifters and public drinkers.
Now if that progression is accurate, then if becomes increasingly difficult to mount a good argument against turning down the tap. A good place to start would be one day a week without access to the bottle shops. And if that closure were to extend from the SA/NT border north to Elliott, central Australia just might get a weekly reprieve from the daily trauma of loud and violent public drunkenness.
To those still unconvinced, I ask why not try it? Given the obvious state of our streets and public spaces, why are you so scared to try a different approach? Clearly what we are doing just isn’t working.
Or at least it isn’t working if we want to continue (?) to be known (and let’s face it – this assumption is under real threat) as a civilised town.


Recent Comments by Hal Duell

Gallery: Friday is the day
Now that would have been an interesting question. Do the residents of Alice really want another art gallery? Or are we being sold a pup?


Bush community learning centre to close
“Batchelor Institute say that increased funding would be needed to run the Centre in 2018, they run similar programs in three Warlpiri communities where they are funded through royalties money.”
Sounds like a plan.


Cops with assault rifles footage six years old
I would like to thank CM Gunner for clarifying the issue of armed and masked TRG police being deployed on the streets of Alice over the coming summer. There won’t be any. Good!
The use of specialised equipment to assist operational officers is a good idea. The perpetrators of youth crime need to be identified.
But this begs the question of what will be done with these young criminals once identified? We can’t hold them in detention, we can’t hold the parents accountable, it seems we can’t do much of anything, really.
These plans are not very encouraging. I suppose they will keep the vigilantes off the streets, but will they keep the kids off them as well?
Perhaps these running-amok kids can be identified as coming from a specific community, and then the royalty payments going to their community can be sequestered until the damages done by them to the residents of Alice have been fully paid for?


Masked cops with assault rifles, but where are the parents?
So it’s come to this. A Tactical Response Group may be deployed to Alice to deal with youth crime. And we have no one but ourselves to blame.
Consider the alternatives.
The NT Police dare not intervene in youth crime for the simple reason that to so much as look sideways at a juvenile delinquent in action is accompanied with reams of paperwork and the high likelihood of a departmental inquiry and possible legal action.
The Town Council is not constituted to deal with policing matters. They can and do host meetings to try to reach a community consensus on what to do about children “getting ready for the summer crime spree,” but internal divisions and differing agendas make theirs a fractured voice.
And while the larger Indigenous organisations often voice their concerns, whatever they may be doing has clearly not worked in past years, and there is little to suggest that this summer will be any different.
And so now we may be seeing armed and (I assume) masked men (and women?) patrolling our streets, not to deal with organised criminals or national or international terrorists, but to deal with children. How inept are we?


Council not keen on offer of help to fight crime
One objection to Mr Alice’s comments as reported above would be that rather than a need to clean up our town to make it safe for tourists, we need to clean up our town to make it safe for residents. Accomplish that, and tourist safety will not be an issue.
Yes, there is a need to make parents accountable for their underage children, to address our irresponsible consumption of alcohol, and so much else. And perhaps chief among the “so much else” is a need to really look at what the rampaging kids are showing us.
And what might that be? I suggest that within these “gangs” that we are reading about, and no matter how fleeting and unarticulated, there will be hierarchy, loyalty and discipline.
Can we possibly provide that within a whole-of-town context, instead of a three hour talk fest going nowhere and beset with a confused hierarchy, split loyalty and little discipline?
The kids are showing us what is needed. Start there.


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