Pointless pandemic blame game will benefit no one

Pointless pandemic blame game will benefit no one

Symbol of money rather than culture

I wholeheartedly agree with Clover Moore’s lament (“Baragaroo’s phallic forest a monument to rapacity”, October 20). However, I recall that James Packer’s “unsolicited proposal” was initially only for a casino. But to make the casino financially viable (Crown argued) it was necessary to add a hotel and later add apartments on top. The NSW government, not wanting to look a gift horse in the mouth, signed off on 75 storeys. Now, seen from much of the harbor, the Sydney Opera House has the unfortunate but fitting backdrop of a raised finger. Ian Ferrier, Paddington

What about a forced acquisition and return to public ownership of land and buildings? Packer’s Petals could become public housing – a fair replacement for the Sirius building and The Rock’s terrace houses. Anne Matheson, Gordon

A decade ago, I was driving along the Hungry Mile and pointed out the Crown casino building to my then five-year-old son. “Do you like this new building?” I asked. “It’s terrible. When I grow up, me and my friends want to get bulldozers and knock it down.” Nothing is eternal. John Swanton, Coogee

There must be something seriously wrong with me. I find the Crown casino building interesting, even quite elegant, when compared to the blocky, angular high-rises nearby. That’s the place that bothers me. Colonel Nicholson, Hawks Nest

On the eastern side of the Sydney CBD is the Opera House, the Botanic Gardens, the State Library and various museums. These public arenas, built in the 19th and 20th centuries, were undertaken by ambitious governments determined to provide NSW with great cultural facilities. Any politician, or anyone for that matter, who defends the development at Barangaroo is extolling its values, or lack thereof. Rodney Crute, Hunters Hill

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All work, no play

The move to incorporate new schools into high-rise apartments and retail businesses is a bit sad (“Plan to get schools to share commercial space”, October 20). Something fundamental has been lost when there are no playgrounds, basketball courts or playgrounds available to students. What do PE and PE classes do? Do you bus the children to the nearest available sports field a few times each week? Children need space to run around during recess and lunchtime. It lets off steam and allows for social interaction. These ill-conceived plans are indicative of another fundamental Australian tradition that has been sacrificed to the great gods of trade, development and governmental expediency. Robert Hickey, Green Point

Out of words



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Most of us are aware that English is always evolving (Letters, 20 October), but using texting and short abbreviations as a norm rather than a practice in creative writing is unlikely to produce the level achieved by a Joseph Conrad or a VS Naipaul (neither of whom was a native speaker). John Flint, St Leonards

Gloomy prognosis

Your correspondent is fortunate to have always met excellent GPs (letter, October 20). Patients with complex diseases that are difficult to diagnose tell a different story. For them, the search for a compassionate and informed GP can be exhausting and fruitless, with good GPs having closed books and those in medical centers being pressured to carry out superficial consultations. Symptoms are dismissed or said to be psychological; misdiagnosis and gaslighting are common. In any discussion about necessary changes in the medical system, it is important to recognize that not all diseases follow a straight path and to ensure that all doctors are trained to listen to and believe in their patients. Sally James, Russell Lea

To the majority of hard-working, dedicated doctors who work selflessly for their patients, only to feel devastated by recent reporting and societal condemnation: welcome to the world of the vast majority of hard-working, dedicated teachers who work selflessly for their students for a similar outcome . Toni Fatherley, Taree

Play the game

Sponsors are hard to come by in this competitive world (‴ ⁣⁣ I just want to meet her’: the good, bad and ugly of sponsors”, 20 October). If professional athletes want to reap the huge financial benefits, they must accept the agreements made by their organizations. If they don’t like the situation, find another job or club whose sponsor they approve of. The choice is theirs. Denis Suttling, Newport Beach

Golden memories

Storm coach Craig Bellamy and Dale Finucane from Storm pose with the JJ Giltinan Shield.

Storm coach Craig Bellamy and Dale Finucane from Storm pose with the JJ Giltinan Shield.Credit:Chris Hyde/Getty Images

Peter FitzSimons (“What’s the most valuable item in Australian sport?”, 20 October) might want to add to his list of prized sporting items the 1908 gold pen that belonged to Rugby League founder James Joseph Giltinan. The pen was used to sign the documents that created the NSW Rugby League and also the original players’ contracts – including that of the great Dally Messenger. It is on loan to the Australian Rugby League Commission, but the Rugby League Museum at Moore Park has closed. Joy Heads, Wollstonecraft

Thanks, Peter FitzSimons, for the impressive list. However, as a seasoned Parramatta Eels supporter for the best part of 55 years, I think a glaring omission is the goalposts from the Cumberland Oval night fans celebrated by burning and looting the place after the grand final win in 1981 (our first). Maybe not in the league (pun intended) of Australia’s most precious, but certainly Western Sydney’s? What happened to these posts? George Zivkovic, Northmead

Take notes

I am overwhelmed by the suggestions for who should be on our $5 bill (Letters, October 20). Can you imagine the controversy if we were to elect a president for a republic? Brian Ireland, Burleigh Heads (Qld)

I’m sure Elvis was on a Parkes bound XPT earlier this year. Allan Gibson, Cherrybrook

Former Supreme Court judge, Justice Michael Kirby.

Former Supreme Court judge, Justice Michael Kirby.Credit:Justin McManus

Who chose the arbitrary 30 years dead before anyone can stand on a bill? Why can’t they still be alive to enjoy seeing themselves there and in recognition of their position in society? Former Supreme Court Justice Michael Kirby would seem a fitting recipient of such an honor. Victor Marshall, Meander (Tas)

B4 Go

I wonder if your correspondents (Letter, October 20) would be delighted to receive a text message from a service provider that has recently been hacked: “OMG. AFAIK pwned IRL. NBD GOI. Sry LOL”? Angus McLeod, Cremorne

As a known messaging dumbo, I congratulate myself that it only took me 10 minutes to figure out the correspondent’s message, although I reckon the rude response to a lunch invitation calls for a “gth” response. Rosemary O’Brien, Ashfield

The digital view
Online commentary from one of the stories that attracted the most reader feedback yesterday on smh.com.au
The cost of step three tax cuts jumps by $11 billion to $254 billion
From brand: “Britain made a 100% U-turn on its reckless, unfunded tax cuts. We should do the same! The Liberals know we can’t afford this…but are just playing politics. I tell them “Please put the country before partisan politics!”

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