Letters to the editor May 17 2018

TRANQUILITY: Lake Illawarra's glow tree by Anita Pallas. Send us your photos to letters@illawarramercury.com.au or post to our Facebook page.
TRANQUILITY: Lake Illawarra's glow tree by Anita Pallas. Send us your photos to letters@illawarramercury.com.au or post to our Facebook page.


Is there a more cowardly and childish act than that of truck drivers who harass residents of Albion Park Rail with a provocative campaign of blasting their air horns simply because Shellharbour council stopped them from parking outside the 7-Eleven garage?  What sort of men do that?

One would think that a two-minute walk from legal parking areas along the highway had health benefits for drivers who are essentially sedentary, and invariably overweight.

Then again, the CEO's of trucking companies who choose not to act when drivers are reported for doing so are just as weak, especially since the names of most companies are emblazoned across the sides of their trucks.  

Donald Tate, Albion Park Rail


In December 2013, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) established the Energy Council.

A forum of collaboration between the Commonwealth and Minister representation from each state and territory, and New Zealand, with the aim of developing a national energy policy.

Before 2013 (the year the conservative government came to office) taxpayers paid state governments to supply electricity.  Now things have changed.

Taxpayers pay the government to remunerate board members that squeeze the public purse and boost investor’s share profit or in many cases personal income.  The whole exercise has been a conservative rort to destroy state government’s control of the energy industry.

Where once state government (public servants) reigned supreme (on government salaries) determining the price of electricity and gas we now find millionaire bankers, electricity company directors, and investment professionals in control of the consumers' dollar. The bad news is – it is not going to get better – it is going to get worse.

John Macleod,  Berry


The Liberal Party have published a list of “key achievements”. They begin by telling us that “403,100 more jobs were created in 2017”.

Aside from using the seasonally adjusted figure rather than the more commonly used trend estimate (393,400), they left out the part that says “The number of unemployed persons was largely unchanged, increasing by 100”.

Then, small business tax cuts “for 3.2 million businesses employing 6.7 million Australians.” Firstly, according to the ABS, at the end of 2016-17, there were 2,238,299 actively trading businesses in Australia in total, not 3.2 million, and they aren’t all small businesses as they imply.

Secondly, 61.2% of all small businesses don’t employ anyone else. Of those who do have employees, 70.1% employ between one and four people.  Small business tax cuts might sound nice but they do little to boost employment.

The next ‘achievement‘ on the list was the instant asset write-off “used last year by 300,000 small businesses to invest in new equipment and machinery.”

According to Treasury data, in the first year of the scheme, 99,000 businesses took advantage of the write-offs, claiming a total of $415 million, up from the $165 million claimed in write-offs before the scheme was introduced. Aside from 300,000 being a fabrication, if it is such a good idea, why are they scrapping it on 1 July this year?

Don Kelly, Kanahooka



The private health sector is all about profit. Its common knowledge that healthcare workers are paid less than in the public sector.

_ Devado


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