Territory Stories

The Centralian advocate Tue 28 Feb 2012



The Centralian advocate Tue 28 Feb 2012


Centralian Advocate; NewspaperNT




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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Alice Springs; Tennant Creek (N.T.) -- Newspapers; Alice Springs (N.T.) -- Newspapers.; Australia, Central -- Newspapers

Publisher name

Nationwide News Pty. Limited

Place of publication

Alice Springs


v. 66 no. 79

File type



Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

Copyright owner

Nationwide News Pty. Limited



Parent handle


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Page content

6 Centralian Advocate, Tuesday, February 28, 2012 P U B : C A D V D A T E : 2 8 -F E B -2 0 1 2 P A G E : 6 C O L O R : C M Y K ALICE BY NUMBERS 3 The drop in the number of people working in the retail industry in Alice Springs between 1996 and 2010 OPINION 525 The number of recorded alcohol-related assaults in Alice Springs in the first six months of the Enough is Enough alcohol reforms 5 Gillens placing in the top 100 Australian suburbs where properties had jumped most in median value last year OPINION Completely random I write to express my dismay and frustration at the overt pro-Rudd stance adopted by your newspaper in last Fridays edition. All 12 of the good citizens whose faces and thoughts were recorded in your frontpage story were those supporting the purported Ruddslide. May I inform your readers that your editorial team also asked my opinion (and captured my image) at the post office last Thursday. Apparently, because I expressed my support for Julia and not Kevin, my views have been ignored, and failed to feature in your article. Dear Editor, did all pro-Julia vox-poppers like me also end up on the cutting-room floor? Was the group you featured in your front-page article systematically culled to wholly represent the pro-Kevin camp? Was I the lone voice supporting Julia when your reporters sought to capture a random view from the street last Thursday? Exactly how many of the total group surveyed in fact did support Julia, and for what reasons? I gave my statement in full to your man, Troy, and he wrote it in his notebook verbatim. I could write it here for the record. With respect, are your readers to assume that our local News Ltd organ is slavishly following the editorial line of its parent organisation i.e. Bring Julia down by any method of apparently flawed representation or survey? Please let the numbers speak for themselves, and respect the true message of the outback vote which your reporters gathered on the street last week. Otherwise, why should anyone be tricked into being thoughtful and honest with your newspaper when their views apparently run counter to editorial policy. Meredith Campbell Alice Springs o Eds note: Apologies for that Meredith, but theres nothing sinister in the poll. I asked the journalists to return with 12 respondents which is all we had time and space for. In the haste and confusion gathering vox pops can be hit-and-miss exercises; some people answer readily, others dont and others still are abusive they ended up with 13 responses all up. They assure me you were the 13th and last person polled, and therefore didnt make the cut in the copy they filed when they got back to the office. Alwaysa catch Great, Melky: So council and partners buy Melanka but keep the zoning the community love it to bits install homeless statues and screens, then it gets sold as an asset when a partner goes belly-up. Or the council is forced into massive debt to retain it. Guess what? The estate agents did well. Jude Alice Springs with Ronelle van Dongen5minutesNurse and Netball coach Ronelle van Dongen is a registered nurse at Alice Springs Hospital and coach of the NT 19-and-under netball team: Where were you born? Christchurch, New Zealand. How long have you lived in Central Australia? More than six years. What is your idea of a perfect holiday? Climbing a huge mountain in a unique location then relaxing for a few days by the sea. Where is the most unusual place you have visited? Kashmir and Pakistan as part of a medical team after a major earthquake. What is your motto? Energy and persistence conquer all things Benjamin Franklin. Whats your favourite book? I am reading Chris McCormacks book about ironman racing. I enjoy autobiographies from high achievers from all walks of life. What do you do in your spare time? Training for an ironman, coaching and playing netball, participating in RAAF reserves training and catching up with friends. In your wildest fantasy, what would you like to do for a job? I would love to work in Alaska or Antarctica as a nurse. What are the best things about living in Central Australia? The welcoming network of friends that quickly become like family and the weather it is perfect for at least six months of the year. What do you do to relax? Go camping, walking or watch a movie. Your favourite sports team? I tie between the All Blacks and the Silver Ferns. What do you most value in your friends? Their uniqueness and integrity. Whats your favourite type of music? Anything from U2 and the Foo Fighters to the Dixie Chicks and Jack Johnson. What natural gift would you most like to possess? Boundless energy. What is one thing that scares you? Alien movies. Whats your favourite type of food? Fruit and chocolate, as a treat. What superpower would you like to possess? The ability to read minds. Whats your favourite TV program? The Mentalist, Greys Anatomy and How I met your mother. Time to shake trees for drastic action Letters to the Editor PO BOX 2254, 2 GAP ROAD, ALICE SPRINGS FAX: 8950 9740 ceneditorial@aliceadvocate.com.au Virgin gone for good, Tiger a pipe dream, Air Australia vanished in a puff of smoke and the boneyard a dodgy deal, were stuck with Qantas frightening away all our tourists with its exorbitant fares just so that a few politicians and bureaucrats can travel in one of four empty business class seats on every flight. Take a leaf out of Ron Barassis book and if the team is getting done like a dinner in the Grand Final switch the fullback with full forward and next thing youve come from behind and won. Its time for something radical but that is highly unlikely from this present ASTC so there is no prospect of an upswing in tourism on the horizon. Few people realise that any airline wishing to operate an air service into Alice Springs, or any city including Sydney for that matter, needs permission or non-objection from the ASTC, but this is rarely invoked or denied. So why not ASTC invite Qantas to retender for the privilege of operating here and in its submission include the timetable and fare structure it intends to use? Two simple clauses in the expression of interest will ensure many submissions from many airlines: 1. A grandfather clause of five years, plus option for another five. This will protect the successful applicant from competition or predation and unfair practices for up to 10 years. 2. A forfeit clause. After being granted such a privilege, if the successful bidder then decides to pull out when the going gets tough, they will forfeit any right to operate that service again for another ten years. The audacity of ASTC to even issue such a challenge to Qantas will result in an immediate drop in air fares and the usual bullying threats by Qantas to pull out completely. If they did spit the dummy and take their cricket bat with them this could be the best thing that ever happened for Alice Springs tourism. On thin routes such as Alice, these two simple conditions will help ensure: 1. New operators or low cost carriers such as Virgin, Tiger, Air Asia, Lion Air, etc who invest millions to develop the route cant be knocked off by Qantas when it is eventually successful. It could even encourage them to establish a hub at Alice. 2. Ensure that any airline such as Qantas, that starts on a route will stay on the route and make it think twice or give very serious consideration before abandoning the route. I can assure readers, just this letter is enough to send shudders down the corridors of Building A in Coward St Mascot, and the more we shake the tree the more apples will fall. Im not aware that a town or council has ever taken such precipitous action before and it is sure to attract national headlines and good publicity for Alice for a change. Like Barassi, drastic times call for drastic action. After all, its three-quarter time and were 10 goals down do nothing and nothing will change, so its worth trying. Ross Pollock Alice Springs Powerof adverts I recently placed an advert with your Classifieds to sell my household goods. I wasnt asking much as I have moved pretty often with my small family who have now left their single Dad, and I am doing the same once again. Crikey I thought my $50 advertisement in the Advocate would probably bring about 12 people through my home which is in my experience reasonably normal with a garage/lawn sale. The Saturday and continuing over into Sunday brought a lot of people. I am selling up and even had calls from jolly Darwin! Good grief there were people lined up at 7.30am as I had stipulated in my advert for 8am. I literally had a friend thankfully arrive. She helped me field phone calls as the phone ran hot and some 70 people and I mean 70 people going through your home shocked me to disbelief. I felt invaded! It was like an army. My little Jack Russell went berserk initially and then she hid under the bed. I had locked her out several times but people needed to see the double-garage and outside giveaways that I had offered in my advert. I have never experienced so many people coming through my home through a simple advertisement. I still have some things to sell yet I thought the Alice was going down the gurgler. Shes obviously not. Name withheld Alice Springs 1 The number of milimetres of rain in Alice Springs over the weekend