On the Andie Fox saga

Kate Olivieri  writes: Re. “Alan Tudge and DHS think it’s legal to leak citizens’ details to the press. It isn’t.” (Friday)

 Thank you so much for taking this up, Michael Bradley and Crikey. As a public servant (now local and formerly federal) I was utterly shocked when this happened and at the resulting shemozzle. When I started (‘in my day’… but it wasn’t that long ago) it was drilled into you that you never release anyone’s information, ever, for any reason, it is a sackable offence. At first I felt sure some junior staff member had slipped up and then to find it was the Minister – on purpose – well, it’s still a sack-able offence, given it’s illegal! 

On penalty rate cuts

Chris Virtue writes: Re. How to tell if penalty rate cuts are working” (Friday)

 I’ve long wondered what a dog would do if it ever caught the car it was chasing. I have some idea now after watching the LNP deal with the penalty rate cuts that they’ve been desperately chasing for years. “Woof! What do I do now?” As they say – be careful what you wish for…

On Mardi Gras 

Meredith Williams writes: Re. “Scientific proof God ignores Fred Nile’s prayers” (Friday)

The Sydney Stingers look fantastic in their water polo uniforms! Fred Nile should have learnt by now that God doesn’t do weather for sporting fixtures for our convenience. Nor, for that matter, does she provide parking spaces or clear traffic for our deadlines. Rain or starlight on the parade – quite random, really.

On Derryn Hinch

Alex Joseph writes: Re. “The course of estimates hearings never did run smooth” (Thursday)

Thank you ever so much for having the good Senator’s regular piece, on the goings-on in Parliament!! I migrated to OZ in 1983, and as I could not get a job in industry, (remember the 82-83 recession??), I went into teaching. Though I got to love teaching after some time, 1983 and 1984 were the worst years of my life, both professionally and personally. Regret about giving up a wonderful high-flying career in industry was unbearable. I nearly went into severe depression during that period. As a trainee teacher in 1984, I was assigned to a school which was about an hour away by car. That was when I got introduced to talk-back radio, and to Derryn Hinch. I listened to him EVERY day. It was the high point of my day, every day. I learned a lot about Aussie culture, attitudes, etc…etc… from Derryn. He was my hero, my teacher, my guide and my friend.

Over the years, my ardour for Derryn cooled a bit, partly because he went off to Sydney, and partly because I discovered Radio National, (and the joys of Phillip Adams, Geraldine Doogue, Norman Swan, Richard Aedy, et al.) However, I did listen to Derryn once in a while, after his return to Melbourne. I felt really bad about the way the management of 3AW treated him when they sacked him. I was very happy to vote for Derryn when he stood for the Senate, and I will continue to do so, as long as he cares to stand. I am also very happy to read his regular column in Crikey. Today’s piece is an absolute gem! Thank you once again, for having Derryn as a contributor. And thank you for Crikey!! 

Peter Fray

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