Give me the buzz and the noise of downtown every day


Meets strict heritage standards

Re “Heritage checks cast shade over solar panels” (The Age, 7/6). I have a house on a heritage street. Does this decision by VCAT mean that I should replace my car with a vintage vehicle to keep the illusion that nothing has happened in the last 70 years?
Peter Ramadge, Newport

Dangerous move to eliminate cash payments

I was shocked and disgusted when I went to pay for a $4 croissant at a bakery this week. I was happily told that they only accept card payments. I had left my card at home that morning and I was hungry and craving a croissant. And I only had this change with me – enough for this croissant.

Since when is cash not legal tender? I think it should be illegal. I don’t want our society to become cashless and therefore allow our banks to get even richer. Every time people use their cards or phones, the banks get a commission and people don’t seem to care because it’s ‘so easy’.

I also wonder what will happen to the homeless who rely on people who leave them money, and if they too want to buy a croissant. It’s not just this bakery, but also the butcher, and how many people to follow who don’t accept cash.

It didn’t seem that long ago that people only accepted cash. Needless to say, I will not be returning to this bakery, where I was once a regular customer.
Paola Triado, Kew


A national gas policy

BP Energy Statistics provides natural gas reserves, production and consumption data for countries around the world. Many have increased their consumption over the past decade, despite the aspiration to reduce the use of fossil fuels. It emphasizes the inherent value of natural gas, the dependence on its supply and the barriers to substitution with alternatives.

The data also shows that Australia has fewer gas reserves and is depleting its reserves faster, while consuming a relatively small portion of its production compared to other major producers. The last decade’s struggle for competitive gas prices and supply on our east coast has impacted business and stifled new investment opportunities.

This underscores the urgency of achieving the right targets for exports and domestic use. Our failure to implement a national policy, particularly in light of 15 years of reserve practice in Western Australia, is a failure of government, but also of the integration of business, industry and professional societies into the contribution to policy development.
David Brennan, East Malvern

A messy mess

About 15 years ago I was the state signatory for all of Victoria’s gas supply. My department had to forecast the daily gas needs for all industrial and domestic uses. I built a secure website that ordered all that gas, and assigned and billed the gas companies each month. It amounted to billions of dollars.

And with less than 20 employees, it was easy. Just two spreadsheets driven by “week of the year”, “day of the week”, and “average temperature for the day”, run on two simple Mac computers. I was a well-paid outside contractor.

There’s plenty of gas available now – but there’s also a jumble of government (state and federal) “policy” confusion, jamming, and being overwhelmed. It’s a lot like what we’ve seen with COVID-19…and stuff.
David Bishop, East Brighton

System rationalization

The one-week wait time for an appointment with any doctor at my local clinic speaks to how precarious our healthcare system has become. An immediate solution to the GP shortage crisis is to put the responsibility for healthcare directly in the hands of patients by emailing them the results of x-rays, ultrasounds and blood tests. Follow up only as needed.
Delia Court, Eltham

“Normalize” deaths

The bulk of the 20-odd deaths from COVID-19 every day in Victoria are old-timers and our death rate here (and in other countries, it seems) has normalized.

It is clear that our political leaders, having led from the front in the beginning, are now reacting to the lockdown and backlash to masks, hence their emphasis on ‘personal responsibility’ for mask wearing and social distancing. That’s all they will commit to now.

It would be nice if more of the population showed some personal responsibility, but young people seem to have accepted infection and re-infection as part of life. Where this will lead in the longer term remains to be seen. Just like primary school, it’s learning by doing.
John Duke, Monbulk

It’s simple: mask yourself

People who choose to wear a mask in public seek to protect not only themselves but also others from contracting COVID-19.

A person infected without knowing it could, by sneezing or coughing, spread the virus. Wearing a mask will reduce the likelihood of this happening. Australians can be very willing to help others, as recent flooding in New South Wales and Queensland has shown.

Conversely, many people show, through their reluctance to suffer the small inconvenience of wearing a mask in public, that they are unwilling to do what they easily can to reduce work and school absences. school, the pressure on hospitals and the resulting number of deaths. of the pandemic.
Alan GuntherCarlton

Take extreme measures

With the US government’s resistance to gun control, it seems that American children are the helpless victims.

I suggest the solution lies in a school strike with children refusing to go to school until the US government acts to keep them safe. This would terrify politicians and they would act immediately. Extreme emergencies require extreme action.
Harry Prosser, Berwick

Courage to go all the way

Perhaps US lawmakers should remember what Atticus Finch said to his son, Jem, in Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird:

“I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of having the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you start, but you start anyway and go all the way no matter what. You rarely win, but sometimes you do. The same attitude could attack another enemy within, illicit drugs.
Angela Thomas, Ringwood

It’s time for men to mobilize

Samantha Selinger-Morris (Comment, 10/6) points to Sheryl Sandberg’s change of heart as she steps down from her leadership role at Facebook (now Meta), and uses that as the reason women shouldn’t fall into the idea of ​​”leaning” into a career. She tells women how to avoid the effects of stress and burnout, but only mentions men in the last paragraph, and only as a quote from Victor Frankl’s book, Man’s Search for Meaning.

Why do we still expect women to do the addiction? Where are the men who must reevaluate their role in sharing responsibilities in the misnamed work-life balance. (As if these two elements were mutually exclusive.)

Isn’t it time to encourage men to take their turn in the workplace and the rest of life?
Jenny Dowd, Ivanhoe East

Good news at last

How exhilarating to read The Age on Thursday. After nine sterile and wasted years, a wave of welcome developments.

Energy ministers approved radical reform plans; Attorney General Mark Dreyfus can “exert leverage” to handle Bernard Collaery case; Craig Kelly will no longer “bomb” us as Prime Minister-Elect; and Minister Catherine King pledges to get Infrastructure Australia ‘back on track’.

But, above all, the splendid photo of the Murugappan family enjoying their return to Biloela after suffering horrific treatment from the former government. May we continue reading about the “decent” way the new government will serve our community.
Sidney Bloch, Hawthorn

The long way back

As a Richmond fan, I loved going to football games – but the ones played on Thursday nights are not good for families, especially those in rural areas like us. A trip to Melbourne means we come home after midnight, which is not good for school and work the next day. No wonder the crowds are down.
Donna Lancaster, Inverloch

Give Tassie a chance

Hey AFL boss Gill McLachlan don’t you think you’re being a little hard on Tasmania wanting them to have a $750m stadium before they can have an AFL team ( Sports, 10/6)? Not too long ago, if the VFL had imposed this kind of standard to join the league, none of the suburban grounds would have passed the mark.
|Ross Bardin, Williamstown

A less stressful time

Your correspondent says: “The real mortgage stress is when interest rates reach 17%” (Letters 10/6). When they were at that level, our mortgage was $43,000 on a $63,000 house and we were both making $20,000 a year, which was the average salary. Our stress had nothing to do with what is about to happen.
Adrian Cope, Gisborne

When people came first

Can we get the SEC back please. Managed by engineers for the benefit of the community.
Joan Peverell, Malvern


Credit:Illustration: Matt Golding


Portfolios often overlap, but why separate responsibilities for climate change (Bowen) and the environment (Plibersek)?
John Hughes, Menton

It seems that AUKUS becomes RAUKUS when Peter sees a political advantage in it.
Mark Brooks, Benalla

Dutton is one of the few MPs who can pass Morrison off as an intellectual giant.
Carlo Ursida, Kensington

If Bowen continues to speak so quickly and almost unintelligibly, no one will know what he is trying to convey. Maybe that’s his plan.
Joan Mok, Kew

The Wong/Albo dream team: eliminating the kow tow from diplomatic discussions.
Greg Curtin, Blackburn South

Before the IMF bails out the government of Sri Lanka, the entire Rajapaksa clan must be sanctioned.
Roger Christiansz, Wheelers Hill


It is inconceivable that universities teaching ethics courses practiced wage theft. The 7:30 (9/6) report was a revelation.
Judith Paphazy, Cap Schanck

A joyful cover on lettuce mania (10/6). Thanks, Tony Wright.
Denise Deerson, Bulleen

I stopped buying iceberg lettuce. Like Elton John, I’m more of a rocket man now.
Paul Custance, Highet

Why did daily COVID-19 data disappear from your website? It is not finished.
Margaret Ludowyk, Braunschweig

I noticed the tattered state of the Australian flag at the top of the GPO. Maybe they are waiting for the new one to be delivered by Australia Post.
Mark Hulls, Sandringham

What Essendon needs is MEGA: Make Essendon Great Again.
David Zemdegs, Armadale

From a longtime Bomber fan: Essendon plays like he’s 150 years old.
Rod Matthews, Fairfield


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