On retail Super funds

John Richardson writes: Re. “How retail super funds siphon off your money to the big banks” (Friday)

Once again Bernard Keane neatly exposes the dishonest efforts by those on the conservative side of politics, representing big money interests like the banks, to discredit trade unions for the very worst of crimes: successfully meeting their responsibilities to enhance the interests of their members better than the banks could ever hope or wish to .

For the federal director of the Liberal Party, the aptly named Andrew Bragg, to suggest that there is somehow something “improper” about a union official acting as a director of an industry super fund deciding to donate his director’s fees to his union is not only wrong-headed, but entirely consistent with what Australians have learnt to expect from this dishonest lot.

Perhaps Bragg could find a moment to explain why it is not equally unacceptable for the Prime Minister to make a $1.75M donation to the ineptly managed federal Liberal Party?

Hardly something likely to happen of course, given that the Liberal Party’s high expectations when it comes to appropriate behaviour only ever apply to everyone other than itself.

On the NBN

Alex Anderson writes: Re. “On the NBN” (Friday)

 As a senior citizen it is with a touch of sadness that I read Paul Hampton-Smith’s comments. I am fortunate to live in a sea-side rural area where the copper was so rotten that the only feasible economic rollout for the local NBN was FTTP. I enjoy on my PC the fastest speeds for internet news and TV, ABC, SBS and Swiss TV with brilliant results.

The idea that G4 and G5 is likely to make FTTP redundant reflects the Abbott Government’s attitude and understanding of the potential of the internet when FTTN was mooted and which was clear from my correspondence with the then minister Malcolm Turnbull on why we needed FTTP in our district. From the polite reply filled with party mantra I have however no illusion that my letter had any influence.

My impression was that the Abbott Government’s regarded the internet and broadband as something that mum used to email her friends and relatives, for little Jimmy to play online games and for granny to look up recipes. I am not convinced that there has been much change in attitude in more recent times.

Crikey has published many articles pointing out how backward we are as a nation with our speeds. I understand that in the CBDs of some Swiss cities up to 1000 Mbps is offered. That is a nation with a sound economy, with an excellent education and research base where high speeds are put to good use. The comment however reflect the notion that social media on mobile gadgets is of the highest priority. In fairness I fear he is not alone in this regard. It might also be indicative of understanding at large of what relevant infrastructure improvement is. To quote the US President: Sad!

Get Crikey for $1 a week.

Lockdowns are over and BBQs are back! At last, we get to talk to people in real life. But conversation topics outside COVID are so thin on the ground.

Join Crikey and we’ll give you something to talk about. Get your first 12 weeks for $12 to get stories, analysis and BBQ stoppers you won’t see anywhere else.

Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
12 weeks for just $12.