A good ‘un
ONE of the better forums, Monday night in Fremantle. Great turnout as usual with some impassioned questions as well as answers and some excellent mostly comic Twitter feeds!
A new star of politics was born: Jordon Steele-John, the Greens candidate, showed not only maturity well beyond his years, but he was on top of every issue raised. A fearless match for any politician—articulate, impassioned and very well-informed.
Strange that Fremantle has attracted so many right-wing, mostly extreme right-wing candidates. Matthew Hanssen, Liberal, couldn’t get his foot out of his mouth, classic conservative “strict father” who knows best, and that should be sufficient to elect him, amongst other things adamant that boat people are “illegal” immigrants!
Labor MP Melissa Parke has certainly grown into the job, and showed us glimpses of the real Melissa unconstrained by party whips. She clearly embodies much of Fremantle’s more thoughtful characteristics, but the need for her to toe party lines was very evident. Sam Wainwright as impassioned as any politician I have seen, with well-thought out ideals, many of which deserve far greater airing on the national scene, but sadly to date have not. Sam pointed out the weakness of having a Labor MP, definitely not at the personal level, but all politicians from the large parties like Labor are constrained by their caucus. Even though Melissa has views that differ from Labor policy, she can only express them within the secrecy of Labor caucus, she cannot bring these issues, many close to Fremantle’s heart, out into open public discussion, and hence for all intents they are completely unheard.
For me this lower house election has turned into a straight fight between Jordon Steele-John and Melissa Parke—both would be good MPs for Fremantle. The question is does Fremantle have guts to set off this rising Green star on his journey into politics, or do we stick with the well-meaning current incumbent?
The upper house is a different ball park we just have to stop either of the major parties having outright control.
Newmarket St, Beaconsfield
The Ed says: The Greens and Socialist Alliance also strictly enforce party discipline on their candidates and MPs, Paul, not just the Liberals and Labor.
I wish to sincerely thank all people involved in the return of my handbag which I left on a 106 bus on Friday August 9, especially Glenda who works at Fremantle station. She was wonderful in her efforts, phoning my family and the lost property, as was a bus driver who flagged down buses trying to locate the one I was on.
I was grateful to receive a phone call Monday to say it it had been found. Everything was intact, except for some money taken from my wallet. That could be replaced, but nothing else could.
My thanks and appreciation once again to you all.
Mrs P Naylor
Moreing Rd, Attadale
WITH an estimated $30 billion black hole in costings, the federal Liberals must be considering what assets they can sell.
As John Howard sold Telstra to fund his government, Abbott must be looking at selling Medicare Private, Australia Post and the National Broadband Network to fund his massive tax revenue shortfall.
We should always be wary of “selling off the farm” to prop up the government, especially when the Liberals are planning to give large wealthy mining companies a tax break.
Jenkin St, South Fremantle
Let me count the ways
THERE are several reasons why I dislike your newspaper: There is the relentless left-wing pro-Greens slant, the contempt for people who are not-left wing and pro-Green, the abysmal standard of writing, the anti-business bias and the bare-faced inconstancy of the page after page after page of advertisements from real estate agents.
But undoubtably what I dislike most is the arrogance of the Editor in always having the last word on any letter to the editor with which he disagrees. No contrary view is permitted without the editor stepping in and footnoting his rejection of the view, or sneering at the letter-writer.
I have not gone as far as one of my friends who has a sign on his letterbox “No Junk Mail—especially the Fremantle Herald” but I’m having one made.
Point Walter Rd, Bicton
IF Cockburn merges with Kwinana, will it become a better council?
Over the years councils have become very lazy in the works programs, they no longer clear dead animals from the road, streets are cleared of rubbish only on Keep Australia Beautiful day, storm-damaged trees are only cleared if they are a hazard, it takes sometimes months, to replace street signs. Our rates are sometimes used on the wrong priorities.
WELL, it appears the true colours of Russell Aubrey have been revealed in a court of law. Methinks the magistrate was far too kind to Mr Aubrey when he said, “this case demonstrates that peoples’ memories are not always accurate”. Thank goodness Cr Pazolli had the foresight to record the meeting.
The question remains: Will the Mayor do the honourable thing and resign? He has certainly done a very good job of tarnishing the City of Melville’s image. His actions demonstrate to me he is unsuitable to hold this post.
Tweeddale Rd, Applecross
CAN you please explain to me why you feel the need to print a swear word seven times on the front page of your newspaper?
Does your newspaper not have to conform to any sort of printing standards or rules to prevent children from being subjected to foul language?
TV and radio seem to have rules and regulations, yet you do not.
My young children are usually the first to grab the newspaper out of the postbox and I do not expect to have to proofread the paper before they look at it.
Can you please explain the reason why you felt you needed to do this and also send me a copy of the standards of printing that you must adhere to.
Pomfret Rd, Spearwood
I JUST want to congratulate the Herald for this really important story.
Far from being some kind of oafish bully-boy as I’d until now imagined, Cr Pazolli appears to be almost heroic in advocating for and representing his area in such difficult circumstances.
This begs questions around other councillors’ ability to be effective in an environment which seems hostile to diverse opinion.
Also, what is the code of conduct for the council, especially the mayor? Surely it is unacceptable to so seriously misrepresent another fellow on the council. But further, how is the code written, does it write out people’s ability to speak up even if it’s contrary to popular view?
Thanks again for shining the light on this one!
Birdwood Cs, Bicton
I WAS very disappointed to read the article which included seven expletives.
The inclusion of swear words hardly improves the journalistic output of the paper and, even though reported in context, did not improve the content nor could be regarded as intrinsic to the story. In many houses in your readership area there will be kids who read the Herald, or at least see the front page on the table at home and just don’t need to see that kind of language in printed matter. Despite you being an independent paper surely you can do better than this, Chook.
Denny Way, Alfred Cove
An absurd quarrel
THE saga of the stoush between the Melville mayor and Cr Pazzoli makes reading which can only regarded as hilarious, but nevertheless has to be considered seriously.
Making a secret recording of a political discussion is gutter politics at its most despicable. Whatever was said at that meeting was clearly forceful and robust and the words used were not important and their meaning clearly not to be taken literally whatever they were.
If Mayor Aubrey is be penalised I hope Magistrate Smith will impose the minimum sentence permissible. I very much hope he will not award costs, including Ms Lonsdale’s fee against him.
Australian politics has a tradition of robust language and colourful speech at all levels—particularly as exemplified by Paul Keating.
It is healthy politics to express feelings forcefully and earthy vernacular is part of the paradigm. To take up literal meanings as Cr Pazzoli has is very much a “whinge” and is equivalent to a female politician crying “misogyny” whenever attacked.
In Melville we elect our mayor and I voted for Russell Aubrey. I would unhesitatingly take his side in this absurd quarrel and it should result in disgrace for Cr Pazzoli and Ms Lonsdale. And I don’t think the Herald came out with too much credit for the way it reported the incident.
Dr Ralph Hickling
Lilian Ave, Applecross
The Ed says: Apologies to readers whose letters didn’t make it in due to lack of space.
The Chook is not for turning
WE received plenty of letters and phone calls this week from readers outraged by last week’s front page story. We believe the outrage was misplaced.
More people were upset by the presence of naughty words than the Melville mayor swearing in court an elected councillor had threatened him, only for the mayor’s testimony to be completely shredded, courtesy of a secret recording.
If the mayor’s violence restraining order application against Cr Nick Pazolli had succeeded, Cr Pazolli would have been restricted from going about his normal business as a law-abiding citizen. He would have been banned from going near or communicating with the mayor. The mayor’s testimony—and the naughy words—had been central to his application.
When faced with a backlash most organisations these days offer a mealy-mouthed apology along the lines of “we’re sorry if we offended you” to make the issue go away. But we’re not sorry for last week’s story, not even if it offended. It was a solid piece of local journalism.
Some readers asked why we didn’t blank the letters. Well, we’ve never been in the habit of infantilising our valued and discerning readers.
But what about the children who might pick up a paper and see the naughty words? Well, we figure our readers are smart enough to explain context and we don’t want to reduce our paper’s content to that which a child might be most comfortable with.
We do thank everyone who contacted us to give us a piece of their mind: You are well within your rights to have your say and to express your feelings and to seek redress. It’s just that on this occasion, the Chook is not for turning.