Short Takes

HERE’Sa thought: does Newcastle really need light rail?Who says we must have it?The interchange is being built at Wickham, and there is a perfectly good bus service at the doorstep. Off the train, onto the bus, nil disruption to the city.One has to question who is pushing the light rail project.

Maree Eggleston,MerewetherI THINK police shootings showthe urgent need for more firearms training. I thinkfrontline officers are sent into harm’s way with inadequate training. If my employer put me to work on machinery I was not properly trained to use and injuries ensued, Work Cover would have a field day.

Scott Hillard,New LambtonI WASreading the letter on the tragic events in PNG by Dave McTaggart (Short Takes, 10/6). That’s nothing on what’s happening in West Papua. Here is an extract from“Indonesian security forces have committed gross human rights abuses against the indigenous Papuans, with over 500,000 civilians killed to date”. What’s the Australian government doing besides funding the Indonesians with foreign aid?And what is the United Nations doing? Nothing.

Wayne Ridley,GatesheadWITH nearly three months of advertising hype concerning the Origin series could there have been a more dull, boring opening match?There was going to be fireworks, scintillating plays, big hits etc. Instead we got bash, barge, kick over and over again.I always thought that sport should entertain, amaze and thrill us with sublime skills from gifted players. If we get the same tripe handed to us in Origin 2, I for one will be tuning out

GregOwens,AberdareI SUPPORT the concerns made by Martin Frolich (Short Takes, 7/6) as to the appointment of Mark Scott as head of public education. Given that Finland, with population of only 5 million, is extolled as having all the answers, does the public, the Premier and Mark Scott realise that all schooling in Finlandis through public education and all funding is from the government? Finland also does not have an immigration policyrunning at 200,000 a year.

Judith James,BelmontTHE huge voids left after coal has been removed appearto be surrounded by a ridge of waste rubble, which only exaggerates the size of the hole.To push this in as fill would return the area as what once was, minus the coal.However, considering coal is around $50 a ton, and rubbish tip fees $250 a ton, it makes sense to replace the coal removed with household rubbish, then overlay with the rubble.

Carl Stevenson,Dora CreekTHE POLLSIS architect Angus Rose right? Are Novocastrians afraid of tall, modern buildings?

Yes they are 60%,No they’re not 40%WHATshould the Hunter’s future mining voids be used for?

Wildlife conservation 21%,Irrigation 11%,Water storage 18%,Aquaculture 5%,Hydro-electric power generation 8%,Lakes 39%

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