tip off

Australia Post scheme delivering a small-town headache

Crikey readers talk Australia Post and what should be done about asylum seekers arriving by boat.

Return Australia Post’s scheme to sender

Kate Olivieri writes: Re. “Going postal” (yesterday). Regarding three-day a week delivery: this would be a disaster for regional areas — it already takes mail from my town (Lismore) three to five days to get to/come from (as an example) Canberra or up to four weeks coming from overseas. I already have a PO box because I have had to move around a lot, but again I already often have to wait to get mail — I pay extra to be notified when I have mail, and sometimes I can’t get there for another two days.

So some simple maths, assuming mail was delivered Monday, Wednesday and Friday (you can bet it would be fewer days in smaller post offices — Lismore has about 36,000 people and the post offices would service around 46,000):

Posted Monday the 1st in Canberra, arrives Thursday the 4th in Lismore, can’t get to the post office until Friday 5th or Monday 8th.

Will become:

Posted Monday 1st in Canberra, arrives Monday the 8th in Lismore, can’t get to the post office until Wednesday the 10th or Friday the 12th.

This means that four-day delivery/one-week pickup will become eight-day delivery and nearly two weeks to pick up. Regional and rural areas continue to be shafted by business.

John Richardson writes: If Chokyi Nyingpo thinks it would be tough to live with Australia Post’s proposed new customer-focused program, involving either paying for mail deliveries or picking them up at the local post office, he should recognise that he’s dead lucky compared to those in many other communities.

We have never had any kind of delivery service from Australia Post and have to travel to the local garage a couple of kilometres away to pick up our mail. Still, a whole lot better than having to drive 20 kilometres to the nearest post office. Count your blessings, Chokyi!

A real way to stop the boats

Colin Smith writes: Re. “Kingsbury: Australia’s big asylum seeker policy hole” (Monday). First Dog has expressed my worst fears about where our asylum seeker policy is headed, and Damien Kingsbury has outlined a humane, legal and practical alternative.

The Kingsbury regional solution is essentially the same as the one Malcolm Fraser implemented years ago, and as the Greens now advocate.

Genuine’ refugees?

Tamas Calderwood writes: Re:  ”Why most of us want the boats to stop” (yesterday).  Your editorial attributes the majority opinion on boats to a “misinformation campaign”. However, perhaps Crikey isn’t as clued up as the public on this issue. Your credulous acceptance that being “stamped [as a] refugee” automatically makes you a genuine refugee is obviously rejected by a majority of Australians. The questions is, why? My guess: when 80% of these “refugees” destroy their documents to conceal their identities after paying $5000-$10,000 to people smugglers for an illegal passage to Australia, they lose the benefit of the doubt.

7
  • 1
    wayne robinson
    Posted Wednesday, 22 January 2014 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    I hardly need to comment on Tamas Calderwood’s contribution when you’ve provided such good links refuting his claims.

    Congratulations.

  • 2
    klewso
    Posted Wednesday, 22 January 2014 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    80%”? It fits the Pareto Principle any way.

  • 3
    JohnB
    Posted Wednesday, 22 January 2014 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    I’m more than half convinced that TC is Crikey’s Court Jester, inserted for light relief by bored journos at the end of their shift.

    The new drum was needed because his old one is now very threadbare and on the verge of complete failure.

  • 4
    Tamas Calderwood
    Posted Wednesday, 22 January 2014 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

    Wayne - the links support my arguments, right? 80% discard their documents (at least)?; it is illegal to pay a smuggler to come here by boat?

    John B - possibly i’m the CJ. Care to explain why the world hasn’t warmed for 15 years?

  • 5
    Hugh (Charlie) McColl
    Posted Thursday, 23 January 2014 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    Tamas Calderwood, provide uncontestable evidence for your outrageous claim that “. . the world hasn’t warmed for 15 years”. That is - show the actual data source/s, explain the scientific foundation for your interpretation of that data including how you propose to measure ocean temperature and include some baseline against which your claim can be compared. Please don’t quote some other person. You have made this claim off your own bat. Own it or leave the field.

  • 6
    Dogs breakfast
    Posted Thursday, 23 January 2014 at 11:42 am | Permalink

    On a lighter note, Kate references to Australia Post’s suggested 3 day per week delivery conflates the idea that they wouldn’t actually be working the other days.

    I’m not sure what Oz Post is planning, but 3 day a week delivery doesn’t necessarily mean only 3 days a week movement of post, just the last part, so her analysis is misguided.

    Sorry, just responding as an analyst would.

    As for the merit of the argument, it seems to be one of the best ideas that have come out of the public (or private) sector in decades. If you can work the rosters so that you get a substantial reduction in hours worked, with so little downside, it’s a brilliant piece of lateral thinking.

    And it could be done just for major cities and regional towns, and consequently have no effect on smaller towns.

    Lismore, by the way, is one of the larger regional towns in Australia.

  • 7
    JohnB
    Posted Thursday, 23 January 2014 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

    In Hamilton, NSW, as a kid, mail was delivered twice daily on weekdays and once on Saturdays.

    Attrition has never been properly explained on rational grounds - it just happened.

    Now living in Singleton, NSW, the contractor deliveries were so unpredictable that, a couple of decades ago, I decided to do without them altogether and instead to pay for a PO Box. At least, that way I got all my mail each time I went into town (3km by crow; 9km by road).

    Mail contractors have come and gone - my measure of their reliability is feedback from my neighbours re delivery of free stuff. It hasn’t improved.

    So, I continue to pay for the PO Box and occasionally drive my 18km round trip for my mail. During the past 20 years, the PO Box would have cost us an average of say $70 per annum - $1400 over the period.

    Would city slickers please refrain from suggesting that country folk are too expensive? Australia Post left us behind many years back.

    In fact, they have let almost everybody down.

    Why not close the whole show down, forget any social duty from Australia Post and put he money saved in wages towards better real social services.

    Emails suffice for most mail.

    There are commercial providers galore for parcels.

    End of problem.

    Oh, and make sure that the CEO turns the lights out as he exits.

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