On political turncoats

Joe Boswell writes: Re. “Mayne: 12 political turncoats, including Cory Bernardi” (Monday)

Stephen Mayne’s list of recent political turncoats includes Lucy Gichuhi. This seems more than a little harsh. Far from turning her own Family First coat, she had it snatched off her. She declined the offered replacement coat from the Australian Conservatives, which seems fair enough. Whatever she did, she had no option of remaining a Family First senator — and that’s why I’m not clear how she remains eligible to be sworn in as a senator on the Family First ticket now that ticket has gone the way of the Norwegian Blue Parrot.

On Badgerys Creek and the war on the young

John Richardson writes:Education Minister renews government attack on young Australians” (Monday)

While some might agree with Bernard Keane’s thesis regarding regional aviation, in particular his arguments about the nature of the alleged problems it currently causes at Kingsford Smith airport & the suggested “solution” to those problems represented by the new airport at Badgerys Creek, there are others who see the situation playing out quite differently .

The fact is that some regional airports with more ambitious plans are busy seeking to dispense with the services of regional airlines such as Regional Express (Rex), who use smaller aircraft, by trying to coax major airlines with larger aircraft to service their destinations; examples include Merimbula & Griffiths Airports.

If the smaller regional operators are banished to Badgerys Creek, the major players would not only be able to take-over their slots at Kingsford Smith, but to use some of those slots to also take-over some regional routes with growth potential. This also fits-in neatly with the NSW state government’s recent decision to deregulate regional air routes.

Ultimately this scenario could see regional players such as Rex relegated to servicing only the smaller, unprofitable regional ports, which might eventually hasten the demise of both the regional airlines & the smaller regional airports as well. In spite of all the grand plans & scheming, Badgerys Creek might wind-up being predominantly concerned with the movement of air cargo, while the highly lucrative passenger services remain in the rapacious hands of the monopolists across town.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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