Remy Szabo (Mercury, June 29) simplistically says sanctions don't work, mentioned Russia, and suggests we should find better ways to wield power without suggesting what they might be.
Sanctions don't work if he means they don't STOP the unwanted action. They don't claim to. But in the case of Apartheid South Africa, they added to the pressures which brought that regime to change.
Dropping atom bombs and direct warfare WORK much better stopping unwanted action if you have the power and are ready to accept the consequences! Does Szabo advocate that?
Sensible and cautious regimes try for lesser means to influence other regimes. Szabo is wrong saying sanctions have no effect on Russia and he indeed concedes it has inconvenienced Russians, which he finds distasteful.
His letter amounts to an incoherent advocacy of doing nothing in the case of the Russian Ukrainian invasion. Like most Australians, I strongly disagree.
David Goss, Woonona
Barbara Sawtell asks how Marianne Saliba can stand in the Shellharbour Ward A elections as an independent while still a member of a particular party (Mercury, July 2). She can't. NSW Labor Party rule A.7 (a) states it is a condition of Party membership that a member must not stand for public office against an officially selected Party candidate. That any member who fails to comply with this rule will be regarded as having been expelled from the Party, effective from the date of nomination.
Peter Van der Roo, Wollongong
Stewart Sweeney ('Ageist criticism unfair' - July 2) raises an issue that probably irks a lot of older Australians. His well-expressed response to the absurd attitudes of a growing number of today's young Australians towards baby boomers is spot on. Sadly, however, it's not their fault they are ignorant of the truth of Australia's recent history, especially the social history of the last century.
They have been taught a distorted version of our nation's past during their education in our Socialist run education system. Their attitudes and beliefs have been tainted by Socialist dogma. They believe everyone in previous generations unfairly led charmed lives and now, all Australians must be reduced to the lowest common denominator.
They are the future population of our nation: discontented citizens who have been trained to dwell on life's storm clouds while ignoring the sunshine. And while they are feeling all this discontent, each year hundreds of thousands of people from all around the world will be prepared to go through hell and high water to become Australians.
Richard Burnett, Wollongong
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