Global warming worse than single traffic jam – Sydney Morning Herald
Could someone please explain how, if there are only about 15 million Jews in the whole world, we could control the world’s media, banking, jewellery business, companies, IT, mining and arts? Ben Basger, Bondi Junction
For 3000 years, Jews have been hated, exiled, scattered. As a people, they should have disappeared, but they have outlived their persecutors, and they will outlast Kanye West and his ilk. George Fishman, Vaucluse
Harry and Meghan and a good lie down
Despite a privileged upbringing and an adoring mother and grandmother, Harry attacks an institution that offered him so much (“Harry not tempted to fit the royal mould”, December 9). Is he jealous of Kate and William, or simply a money-hungry celebrity? I hope the public will finally see him for what he has become – a dissatisfied, angry younger brother of a future king. Denis Suttling, Newport Beach
I told my girlfriends I did not watch Harry & Meghan. They both replied that they did and both had fallen asleep. Angela Miller, Bondi Junction
I watched about five minutes of Harry & Meghan but turned it off and watched a more interesting video on how to get old tint off windows. Margaret Priest, Wallsend
Harry and Meghan appear to be famous for pushing prams, feeding chooks, holding hands and trashing Dad. Peter Fleming, Northmead
Shakespeare once had King Lear lament, “How sharper than a serpent’s tooth it is, to have a thankless child.” Lear was going potty, but still. Theo Clark, Hunters Hill
Harry says that no one knows the “full truth”. The “full truth” is always coloured by the emotions of the teller and the vision of the viewer. Marjie Williamson, Blaxland
Zelensky rightly lauded for bravery in the face of evil
If ever there were a case of truth being stranger than fiction, it is the career of Volodymyr Zelensky (“Zelensky is Time’s Person of the Year”, December 9). From a satirical TV series about being Ukraine’s president to actually holding that office is a leap no one would expect. As a new president, he was asked by Donald Trump, who regarded him as a pushover, to “do a little favour” for him.
When Russia invaded Ukraine, he discovered his strength as a military leader, instead of cutting and running. He meets his troops dressed in drab clothing, not fancy suits. A Person of the Year indeed. Joan Brown, Orange
Commendation for Time magazine for choosing Zelensky as Person of the Year. A humble man whose love for his people and country have shown the world what a good man is capable of, unlike the aggressor Putin, who should be tried for crimes against humanity. Rita Zammit, Concord
In the David v Goliath struggle, Time magazine rightly sets the score: Zelensky 1, Putin 0. Steve Ngeow, Chatswood
If the cap fits
While there is interconnectedness between states in the national power grid, presumably it is possible to charge electricity consumers at different rates depending upon where they live (“States split in final hurdle to national deal”, December 9). If so, an answer to the Queensland government’s refusal to forgo royalties from fossil fuels could be to exclude the state from the power price caps. Roger Epps, Armidale
Capping the price of energy to protect consumers from inflation may be a good idea, but why stop there? Just as deserving for price caps for overpriced products and services are lawyers, surgeons, most company CEOs, consultants to government, cereal and livestock farmers, hotels and more.
All are contributing to the rising cost of living and should receive equal treatment. Bill Kierath, Bathurst
Your correspondent (Letters, December 9) castigates the government for its typically failing economic management. Meanwhile, the opposition, the proponents of laissez-faire and the free market, cries for “something” to be done about energy prices, without offering any solutions. John Christie, Oatley
Liberals fail women again
The Liberal Party was smashed at the federal election by a bunch of female candidates reflecting the glaring fact that voters are sick of the outdated policies of conservative male elites. But still, NSW Liberal branches persist in making the same mistakes, resolutely ignoring the obvious (“Kean’s attack angers branch members”, December 9). Thank goodness there are other candidates to vote for with more enlightened, modern policies. Bruce Spence, Balmain
Here is Indonesian justice (“Call for caution as Bali bomb maker set free”, December 9). Two young Australian drug mules, who killed no one, were executed. Umar Patek made bombs that killed over 200 people and injured hundreds more and gets out on parole. This is so unfair and insulting to the families of those who died and were injured. The Indonesian government must realise that the world is watching its double standards. Mukul Desai, Hunters Hill
Blue Marble at stake
The “Blue Marble”, a photograph of our earth from 29,000 kilometres away was taken from Apollo 17 50 years ago this week. The image, a blue and white sphere against a starkly black background, shows the earth cloaked by vast swirling clouds. It shows just one border, one fine line of atmosphere. It’s an image that awakened millions to the realisation that we are suspended in space, sharing air, water and, ultimately, the fate of our environment. Fifty years on, the Blue Marble is now somewhat tarnished, and the government’s release this week of its Nature Positive Plan: better for the environment, better for business, says, “Australia’s environment is not resilient enough to withstand current and emerging threats, and urgent reform is needed” (“Plibersek flags nature law re-jig”, December 9). This in the same week as UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres implored governments and industry around the world to “step up for nature and pass on a better, greener, bluer and more sustainable world to our children [because] there is no planet B”. Those in power, politicians and captains of industry, should put that 50-year-old image on their walls, screens and fridge doors to remind them daily of just what’s at stake. Karen Campbell, Geelong
While the new federal EPA is very much needed and welcome, Plibersek and the Labor Party still ignore the connection between population growth and environmental destruction. During the announcement Plibersek just accepted that our population would grow to over 30million and that more development was needed to house these extra people. “Sustainable development” is an oxymoron. Included in the announcement is a revised offset scheme, but if any area is ecologically valuable enough to require the developer to offset elsewhere, given the dire state of our natural world, shouldn’t all areas of valuable habitat be protected, to ensure the “nature positive” plan?
We need a major national discussion on our population growth, driven largely by immigration, if we are to have any chance of reversing the decline in our natural environment. Karen Joynes, Bermagui
Lesson not learnt
Shame on Waverley College, a publicly funded private school (“School expels six students for bullying”, December 9). The students have failed the school with their behaviour, and now the principal has failed the students by making their rehabilitation a problem for someone else, probably a public school. Sue Martin, Clareville
In a day or two the story of the expelled students from Waverley College will have left the public domain and their parents will have negotiated with a similar educational institute for entry. Perhaps one cannot lower one’s standards as far as entry into a public school, can one? Heather Lindsay, Woonona
So, who now takes on these boys and their “unacceptable on every level” behaviour – some unwitting under-funded state school? And what about the boys? Let’s hope they receive some counselling. Liz White, Abbotsford
Your correspondent (Letters, December 9) is right to point out that pupils expelled from private schools end up in the public system. The buck stops there. In the early 1970s, my lecturer at Balmain Teachers College called this practice “weeding God’s garden”. Mike Reddy, Vincentia
Plenty to discuss this week. Selective schools were deemed a privilege for a few, while harming others. The federal government was asked to be courageous and not provide compensation for imposing price caps on coal and gas. Many believed the Australian justice system perpetuates the victimisation of women in rape trials. The majority disagreed with Sir David Higgins that a high-speed rail between Sydney and Melbourne would not be commercially viable in Australia – was there a conflict of interest for the Sydney Airport board member?
The subject which brought in the largest number of letters was whether asking someone where they are from is racist. Many wrote to say there were “sensible and balanced views on both sides”, agreeing the way the question was asked was the key to it being offensive. Brian Collins of Cronulla wrote that a salient point in the original report had been missed. “Not only did the lady in waiting ask the question, but she asked it seven times. Obviously, not getting the answer she wanted does give rise to question her intention. You would think one of the qualifications for her job was to have good manners.”
In the discussion about grammar, Joy Nason of Mona Vale fired up a “cannibalistic cabal” of writers with her letter suggesting that punctuation saves lives: “It was drilled into us at school that the addition of a correctly placed comma in the sentence ‘Let’s eat Grandma’ avoids a potentially grisly outcome.”
William Galton of Hurstville Grove suggested it wasn’t granny we should be looking out for: “A comma could save the kids when ‘Grandma loves cooking her grandchildren and gardening’” .
Pat Stringa, Letters editor