POLES & WIRES: Letter writer Don Longbottom says it's time for the government to take charge to solve the power crisis.
POLES & WIRES: Letter writer Don Longbottom says it's time for the government to take charge to solve the power crisis. Trevor Veale

LETTERS: Qld hasn't learnt from mistakes of history

POLES and wires is a bulls--- term used by ignorant journalists and deceiving politicians. The real poles and wires is the low voltage distribution system running down suburban streets and rural roads.

What is being called poles and wires is the High Voltage Transmission System conveying electricity in large blocks from the point of generation to the load centres, usually on steel towers. With the advent of small-scale solar and wind generation (small compared with the large scale of coal generation stations) there has been a proliferation of transmission lines to connect them with the main grid. All of these have to be paid for and provide a profit to the owners. It is claimed that private enterprise is more efficient but these developments have been largely random and unco-ordinated.

The Royal Commission set up in 1936 found that since the inception of the Queensland Power Industry in 1888, its development had been largely random and unco-ordinated. It found there were 62 separate undertakings including 51 with generating stations owned by 41 local authorities and 21 private companies. 24 undertakings were still using DC (direct current). Rural electrification existed only in isolated parts.

Queensland was a victim of waste and duplication.

An old adage says that if you don't learn from the mistakes of history, we are bound to repeat them. And we have. The State Electricity Commission was set up in 1938 with the huge task of creating order out of chaos, and buying the assets of Brisbane city Council and City Electric Light company by far the largest undertakings.

In my years in the industry, the SEC did an exemplary job of planning and building under ministerial control.

In recent years government greed for short- term gain has resulted in the abdication of government responsibility to independent commissions and authorities, for which we are now paying dearly. Utilities should be seen as services not de facto taxation devices.

What is the solution? Another Royal Commission (Lawyers' Picnic)? Another buy-back? Whatever the solution, it is time for the Government to take charge again and apply the KISS principle: Keep It Simple, Stupid.

Don Longbottom


More than LNP hit by One Nation

IN Tuesday's CQ Election Post Mortem on page 3, the last paragraph that was attributed to Robert Schwarten was nothing short of benevolence towards the ALP, when he cited the LNP as being a spent force and the real loser out of the election, by One Nation taking "paint off them”.

Robert Schwarten was rather remiss in this statement by not including the ALP as having "paint taken off them by One Nation”, by not admitting that One Nation blew wind up ALP kilts as well. Maybe the ALP is also a spent political force, even with union standover merchants funding and batting for them.

The Queensland election has shown that the people have had a gutful of the lying, incompetent politicians of two parties and the Queensland election has put them all on notice to shape up or expect their DCM (Don't Come Monday) card at elections.

NWH Timms


Labor has failed to address traffic chaos

A RECENT news comment on how Brisbane traffic compares with Sydney's, stated that, at least in Sydney, infrastructure is constantly being updated to accommodate the increased traffic with population growth, while Brisbane's inadequate road infra- structure is under- resourced and in crisis.

Well may the Labor Government be returned with at least a full representation of 47 seats and probably more, it has failed to address the traffic chaos, not only in Brisbane, which suffers "peak- hour”pain, but in regional areas where road networks are totally inadequate and under increased pressure. Bragging about jobs and how wonderful they are, with a union-backed following, Labor has almost certainly been returned, as time will tell. Our Labor Government is less concerned about how motorists are expected to deal with traffic jams daily without updating investment, than its popularity, reckless spending habits and union friends' approval. We have the highest taxes and motoring costs of all the states, yet we still find our road fatality statistics and road-rage incidents linked to the deficient road infra- structure we pay for. Public transport is also a failure.

Commensurate with the increased cost of living annually and a consequent GST windfall, Labor has again increased licence and registration fees and ignored the repeated fuel companies' exploitation with impunity, while frustrated drivers daily run the gauntlet on our roads: lethal death traps.

Eloise Rowe

Tannum Sands

Alcohol, jealousy foster violence

WE ALL experience pressure to believe fashionable nonsense.

Like the theory that pay inequality between genders is a major factor driving domestic violence.

Could there be some kind of connection? It's a debatable point.

What is not debatable is that drinking alcohol at social get-togethers fosters violence.

And that jealousy related to adulterous sexual behaviour cause violence.

These are the big ones.

Alcohol and casual sex are both bad news.

But who wants to do anything about it?

Who wants to promote the principle of confining sexual activity to loyal heterosexual lifelong, loving marriage?

Who wants to promote abstaining from alcohol?

Get serious. Mostly, don't we prefer to continue our present lifestyles, and hope the violence will go away by itself? It won't.

Arnold Jago

Nichols Point, Vic

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