An e-mail feed I get from Inside Story recently reviewed …

Comment on Bleak tunnel vision in new book on Alice Springs by Hal Duell.

An e-mail feed I get from Inside Story recently reviewed this book.
I was struck at the time by how much it sounded like an almost perfect impression of Alice from someone coming from “down south”.
This review does nothing to change that.
I wonder if Ms Hogan still lives here. Or has she packed up her kit bag and retreated from this “red, calloused earth” (!) to find solace in those coastal cities the poet A.D. Hope apparently once described as “five teeming sores.”?
Hey, please! It’s just not that bleak.

[EDInside Story previewed the book with an excerpt.]

Recent Comments by Hal Duell

Raw deal for Alice from NTG & Murdoch Advocate
There is a glaring omission in this Anzac precinct story, and that’s the why of it. We have two successful politicians in Gunner and Ryan insisting that theirs is the better offer, but they have yet to give us a compelling reason to follow them.
Through their stubborness they have turned the proposed art gallery into a political football, a local tug-of-war, and to what end?
Can the Heritage Council get the question of the oval’s and the school’s heritage value onto their agenda, and then seek a court order prohibiting any moves until their heritage value is resolved?


Morrison announces cash injection for NT
In other words, frack and you can have your money back.
Now we know.


‘Anzac Oval not for sale’: govt under pressure on gallery plans
After walking over the proposed site for the new rugby oval(s) and appreciating again from a close perspective the majesty of the MacDonnell rampart, I wonder the area was not considered for the art gallery in the first place.
And then with the millions saved by not building a new oval, build a three or four story apartment complex in the Todd Mall. Scotty’s might be a good place to start.
If life is what’s wanted and needed to revitalise the CBD, people living there will do it.


Fracking OK, but under ‘strict laws’ – Gunner
From the moment Gunner failed to give an unequivocal NO to fracking during the last election, we all knew this was going to happen. It was just a matter of time.


‘Anzac Oval not for sale’: govt under pressure on gallery plans
I write this as an appeal to Chief Minister Gunner to reconsider his choice of the Anzac area as the location for the proposed National Aboriginal Art Gallery.
Not only did your own steering committee nominate the Desert Park as the optimal choice, but ever since your overriding of their recommendation, the wheels have been coming off what was once a project that had everyone on board.
Many in Alice recognize the heritage value of the old Anzac High School and the Anzac Oval, and while neither carries official heritage listing, I understand efforts are being made to rectify that.
Yes, it would be possible to relocate the rugby fields of Anzac Oval, but at what addition to the cost of building the proposed gallery?
I suggest the final nail in the coffin of public indifference regarding this issue was the published plans to do away with a car park that many who work in the CBD use every day.
The score so far seems to be the destruction of a still valuable building of heritage value and of an oval of similar value, the cost of a new rugby stadium and the cost of a new car park. And all that before construction on a new gallery can begin.
I ask you to please reconsider the Desert Park, as that choice would mean no valuable building to take down, and neither a new car park nor a new stadium needed. I suggest this would be a better choice both economically and politically. Not only would the project cost less, but it would not alienate any of your supporters in Alice Springs.
I will close with a cautionary note to the Gunner ALP government in Darwin: When you next come to town to consult, please don’t repeat your mistake of thinking Central Australia is fly over country.


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