“Why is it that any but the most senior people in policy areas need to be singled out to be close to government at all times?” writes political columnist MICHAEL MOORE
ACT Labor newcomer Bec Cody’s attempt at broadening her profile has backfired badly.
The MLA copped a hammering for straying beyond her roads, rates and rubbish boundaries after labelling the RSL Club at Sussex Inlet a “racist disgrace” over tiles in its urinal depicting Aboriginal men. Ms Cody called on the National RSL to “address this filth as a matter of urgency”. The sorry saga again highlights the need for savvy media minders for politicians.THE Assembly opening week also included some weird beard banter. CM Andrew Barr taunted his former opposite number Jeremy Hanson over his new facial hair. The also freshly hirsute Barr strangely suggested that Hanson’s beard failed to qualify him as a hipster. Barr needs to be reminded that merely taking up cycling does not a hipster make, either.
THE closure of two North Canberra eateries by ACT Health has served up some interesting responses both from the operators and their customers. The Central Cafe at Gungahlin and Belco’s Ricardo’s were closed for alleged “serious food safety breaches” and being a “risk to public health”.
Ricardo De Marco, from Ricardo’s, responded swiftly by confidently predicting he would be back in business pronto, but the Central’s owners opted to post a lengthy handwritten explanation in their window.
Apparently, new refrigeration equipment had failed to arrive but sadly for the Central, ACT Health did arrive and on a day which peaked at 41C.
THE king of breakfast radio, Alan Jones, is a late scratching from Black Opal Stakes’ preliminaries in Canberra next week. Due to a sluggish recovery from a recent operation, the former Wallaby coach and Group One racehorse owner remains unwell and will be replaced at the Thoroughbred Park podium on Friday, March 3, by his boss and fellow turf fanatic, John Singleton. Jones hasn’t been heard in Canberra (on 2CC) since late last year and is expected to return to the wireless in late March.
There may soon be fewer “chuggers” in Garema Place thanks to the ABC’s “7.30” program. Charity Muggers or “chuggers” are the often annoying young people who approach passers-by seeking donations for well-known Australian charities. But “7.30” reports the extreme sales tactics may stem from the exploitation and poor treatment of staff by Appco, the company that employs them.
The direct marketer is facing a $60 million class action by 700 of its salespeople, some of whom are paid just $5 an hour and allegedly subjected to bizarre punishment rituals should they fail to reach budgets.
IS Barnaby Joyce seriously intent on “doing a Donald” and draining the capital of its core industry? Or is he just dog whistling to the bush?
The Nat’s leader, who copped flack for his decision just before the last election, to shift the Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority to his own seat of Armidale, is urging his foot soldiers to motivate their electorates to choose any Commonwealth department they wish for their patch.
A “Canberra, everything must go” fire sale to shore up the Nat’s appeal in the bush may require a serious audit of the ‘roos in Barnaby’s top paddock.Bec Cody, Andrew Barr, Barnaby Joyce
ON the topic of ‘roos, the annual cull is on again and the Australian Society for Kangaroos (ASK), says it remains as “shifty” as ever.
Vice president Fiona Corke says the “government has a track record of changing the law to suit their agenda”… and that ASK had no confidence in the latest “lame attempt at public consultation”.
IN over a decade on Canberra talkback radio, there was no greater trigger for callers than the dangerous practice of tailgating. Now the ACT government is undertaking a trial of chevron road markings, which show motorists safe distances to observe.
Authorities hope the white V-shaped markers used overseas will encourage Canberra drivers, alleged to be the worst tailgaters in Australia, to back off.