“Pathetic” is a good description for someone too gutless to …

Comment on Salt mine: Alice needs to grasp a major opportunity by Steve Brown.

“Pathetic” is a good description for someone too gutless to put their name to a comment.
Legitimate questions come with a legitimate verifiable names – happy to answer any of those that I can.
I won’t however answer tawdry obvious push propaganda, questions that treat Alice Springs News readers like a bunch of fools!
You should direct questions about the mining process to Tellus Salt, they have been very open throughout the process to date, regularly and openly consulting the public through a series of public presentations.
The last of these were in open council and before media just a couple of weeks ago … hence my letter asking the question that should be on everyone’s lips if this project goes ahead and it appears to be very much on track to do so.
What does our community gain from it? Is there opportunity for us? What do we as a community do take advantage of the available opportunity?
Or are we simply going to be bystanders watching a wonderful natural resource disappear much like Northern Gas.

Steve Brown Also Commented

Salt mine: Alice needs to grasp a major opportunity
@ Jimmy: As always he is pushing propaganda and half truths.
The salt mine business case is based on the mining and sale of salt the space created by that activity is available for storage and as such makes up “part” of the business plan.
Storage in a salt mine is a logical natural fit as salt deposits are considered to be the world’s most stable geological formations which have zero connection to water bearing aquifers.
We know that because salt can’t exist in the rock form where there is water.
This salt is five hundred million years old. That’s twice the age of other well know salt deposits, making this mine arguabley the world’s safest storage location and certainly much safer than an wherever waste products are presently stored.
The mine will have space available for storage for all kinds of products, clearly we will be relying on our Government to regulate what the stored waste can consist of.
That regulation can occur under the Mining Act or whatever Act Government chooses, governments write acts, Jimmy.
It could even occur under a specifically written Act called “The Chandler Salt Mine Act of 2017”.
However, in all the discussion we should not lose sight of the existence of waste products of almost infinite variety that require safe storage until the world finds another way to deal with them.
Nor should we ever lose site of our combined responsibility for those products! All in all just another very urgent reason for Government to get publicly involved in this project.


Salt mine: Alice needs to grasp a major opportunity
@ Alex: Just because we made a stupid short sighted mistake once before doesn’t mean we a destined to repeat that same mistake over and over.
We are humans we are supposedly in possession of a level of intelligence that allows us to view our mistakes and learn from them.
There is no comparison however between Tanami, some 600 km, away and a mine project that could drive its staff to work from town if there was good all weather access.
The salt mine is quite prepared to go ahead without that access in fact I think they prefer the FIFO option.
I’m suggesting that we negotiate an outcome that is more beneficial to the region so that we aren’t eventually left with no gain and a big hole! I’m suggesting we legislate FIFO, making it much more difficult to base projects on its use.
At the same time we negotiate the funding for the road, a road that we need anyway, regardless of the mine.
I’m suggesting we leverage the absolute maximum outcome for our community from this project. If we can’t achieve that in the final analysis we certainly should be questioning whether or not we want this project.
Further to all of that, the salt mine is not the only project close to town currently considering its options for staffing.
So right now is a very good moment for a new government to set some direction and to show some willingness to make deals that maximise outcomes for all parties.


Salt mine: Alice needs to grasp a major opportunity
Sigh. It’s no bloody wonder our town struggles to lift itself off the deck when you read comments like some of these. I guess that’s why you won’t put your names on your posts. A tiny little bit embarrassed? Completely understand why you would be.
The salt mine doesn’t need the road. They are quite happy to run a fly in fly out operation and in fact would like an excuse to do so. They are sealing the necessary operational transport route to the rail head, some 10 km.
Alice Springs needs the road sealed if we want to attract the workforce to be permanently based in our town, growing our economy!
Along with that workforce we also get the local business boosting ability to provide services. And we get to be involved in the tourism and ornamental side of the salt mine.
The road will not only serve the mine. It will serve the pastoral industry, the tourist industry, it will also provide all weather access to the community of Titijkala.
It will provide all weather access to the off-road facility facilitating the establishment of a vehicle testing industry, already in the wind.
It will provide access to the proposed blocks and tourist facilities at Ooraminna. It will provide all weather dust and rut free access to the Finke track or at least the first 100 km of it, to the date farm, to future business.
Yes! This is a service road that we must eventually seal anyway.
In fact, the NT Government has just very short sightedly clawed back the funding for the first 20 km of it, otherwise work would be already underway!
Why wouldn’t we want the jobs for our kids? Try and understand the earnings from this project into our town over a 25 year period, extrapolate that out to a couple of hundred years of rates on two hundred houses. 200 high income wage packets into our economy every week!
The extra jobs over and above the mining jobs in service industries the extra bods in our community organisations!
The facts are that if we a clever enough if we move fast enough the Alice stands to gain mightily from this project.
The alternative, if we think it’s all OK to sit around on our non-contributing proverbials worrying that someone might get something for nothing, while contributing somewhere around nothing ourselves, I guess we’ll get what we deserve as well.
A big fat nothing.


Recent Comments by Steve Brown

National Indigenous Art Gallery future in doubt: Gunner
A few weeks back the Chief Minister also announced an Art and Cultural Centre for the City of Darwin.
A week or two later we suffered the announcement of extra flights direct from the Rock into Darwin while flights into the Alice were reduced. Coincidence?
Micheal is under enormous pressure in Darwin to do something for their ailing economy, if things follow the usual Territory precedents set long ago, Darwin will win out, and the Alice will once again loose out, as the entire concept is moved to the north.
That outcome helped along once again by a tiny minority of Alice Springs naysayers who once again in a totally and easily manipulated response have played exactly to the Chief Minister tune, providing the perfect excuse for the project to be moved north: “They don’t want it in Alice.”
What the hell, just another nail in the coffin for the local economy!
Just a few hundred extra jobs, extra visitors pouring millions into the local economy for the foreseeable future!
Ahh, who needs it anyway?
Those who spent so much time undermining it are certain to come up with some great ideas and funding to replace it, aren’t they?


GST billions yet we’re still the basket case
The clear intention of the extra funding was to allow the NT to bring infrastructure and basic services into some kind of equilibrium with the rest of the country, along with the full expectation that in building that infrastructure we would grow and create an economy capable of contributing to, rather than relying on, the rest of the nation.
Clearly those funded intentions have had another consequence, instead of assisting the growth of our economy as intended.
The extra funds have been used to “staff the office”, squandered on water parks sports grounds while desperately needed infrastructure languishes.
Basic services to communities are actually declining! All this while enormous opportunity across the spectrum of industry that should by now have been contributing to the national economy, is ignored! Ridiculous levels of government are simply suffocating all incentive, making it just to danm hard to operate here.
The Territory has become the perfect example of the sloth and dependence created by a truly socialist system, thanks to an over supply of untied, directionless funding.
This quite clearly has also been poorly monitored by the Feds themselves.
How can we possibly be meeting KPIs while infrastructure and services actually shrinks in some places?
What about those beautiful new police stations? They cost millions! Now we don’t even bother to staff them!
Who is taking responsibility for that?
The Federal Government must tighten up funding into the Territory and put a much greater emphasis on “proven positive outcomes”!
Forcing responsibility!
How do we end up killing off entire local industries by allowing and facilitating direct flights into The Rock, for instance?
It happened because nobody in Government gives a proverbial! How do we pull funding from infrastructure like the Old South Road and the Mereenie Loop in favour of sports grounds and water parks?
It happens because nobody gives a proverbial!
How the hell did we ever get into such a place that those in the capital justify and enjoy facilities sports grounds water parks by three, which are free to attend?
While at the other end of the Territory families are still looking at dirt roads, lousy unsafe water supplies, no facilities, not even a small swimming pool let alone a water park!
How does a decent human being justify that situation?
Sure, if we ourselves were actually contributing the dollars we squander upon ourselves … but we are not!
Time for change, time for a much fairer level of service across the Territory and if we want extra fluffy stuff on top of that, time to pay for it ourselves!


The financial crisis in the Northern Territory
The problem for the Territory began with a disproportionate level of GST funding which in turn allowed the creation of a vastly over inflated public bureaucracy mostly based in Darwin and whose members “expect gold plated services” to a level “superior” to that of most other Capitals!
Funding those over inflated services is achieved by parasiting funds intended to provide basic services to the further reaches of the Territory.
The problem is the parasite has become such a burden it’s killing off the host, our bureaucracy so large and directionless it’s suffocating the life out of the last vestiges of free enterprise while providing less and less on ground service to anywhere bar the Capital.
Which now under a reduced GST regime is beginning to get a taste of its own medicine, so God help the rest of us!
Is any NT Government better than Canberra ? Once I would have unhesitatingly replied “yes” to that question… Now? If we can’t put together a stringent well managed government with an overall Territory view, a goal to build the economy, freeing up private enterprise,massively reducing Government bureaucracy, repaying debt through building a larger economy! Redirecting GST funding to fulfil the original intention! Building infrastructure that facilitates long term growth and employment! If we can’t achieve this outcome within the next electoral cycle, I believe anything including Canberra would be better for the future of long term committed Territorians!
I think you’ll find Canberra will be thinking along similar lines.


Vowles, McConnell and Collins dumped from Caucus
Ken Vowles tells us that we are in a lot of trouble and we need to do something about it … kind of a “Der” moment really.
Further to that this afternoon he tells us the Government is being run, all decisions made, by advisers, bureaucrats, something I’m pretty sure most Territorians have long suspected.
So not only are we broke! But democracy, the peoples control of its authorities has gone out the widow altogether!
No wonder we are in trouble the Territories being run by the dysfunctional rabble that makes up its bureaucracy, no guidance from above, deaf ears to complaints from below.
Is there anything worth saving in the Self Government Act?


Treasurers meet on NT fiscal crisis: No offers from Canberra
@ So called Liberal: For the past years, since the introduction of the GST, the Territory has been receiving over and above the GST levels that other Australians revived with an expectation that we would invest wisely in infrastructure, right across the Territory, lifting our Aboriginal populations along with other Territorians to a 21st century level of living, services, health care, overall amenity while creating sustainable economies, employment, opportunity, happy healthy futures for all, repaying the investments of our fellow Australians.
Instead on the ground, in communities, we have growing poverty and despair, continuing welfare dependency, failure to deliver the most basic of services.
Now we are expecting worsening health outcomes as staff are withdrawn from clinics because.
Meanwhile in our glorious capital we’ve lived the high life, installed services, sports grounds, water parks, general amenities to a level that very few other Australians share.
Along with that we have built the most gigantic suffocating, free enterprise killing, parasitic bureaucracy which wastes the good intentions of the rest of the nation while delivering almost nothing.
What should have been a great boon for Territorians setting us up for the future has in fact been our undoing because of greedy self indulgent uncaring and blatantly incompetent government and governments
It’s time we stopped and took stock, time to undertake the biggest restructuring of our bureaucracy since the beginning of Self Government!
I think we have reached a point where it’s time the Feds inflicted upon us A Royal Commission that we really do deserve!
Territorians along with Canberra need to develop a believable, achievable, long term planned, incremental, infrastructural strategy which acknowledges the needs of all Territorians equally and sets out to lift the lives of all Territorians in that manner.
Do we grow our capital?
Of course we do. But not at the expense of the regions.
We grow our capital by developing our regions.
Which in turn feed the growth of the Capital.
We do all this through encouraging and facilitating the growth of free enterprise while shrinking Government to the minimum required – not making up almost the entire population, as it does today.


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