Monthly Archives: February 2019

Malcolm Turnbull a wonder to behold: John Howard showers praise on new PM

Mutual admiration: Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and former prime minister John Howard during the launch of the John Howard Walk of Wonder at Questacon in Canberra. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen Former prime minister John Howard on one of his legendary morning walks. Photo: Andrew Taylor

Turnbull praises generous Abbott

A new Liberal prime minister would be prepared to walk on hot coals – or clear across the waters of Canberra’s Lake Burley Griffin –  for the sort of blessing John Howard was bestowing.

John Howard mentored Tony Abbott. Now John Howard had moved on to Malcolm Turnbull – you could call it a Walk of Wonder.

“I congratulate the Prime Minister, I congratulate Malcolm Turnbull on the enthusiasm that he brings to the cause of the future,” declared Mr Howard.

“We need optimism in this country, we need optimism about our human future, we need optimism about our economic future and we also need optimism about the capacity of the men and women and children of Australia to tackle issues of science and issues that will shape the lives we live.

“We have every reason to believe we can have a future that exceeds in great bounty the happiness and success of the past.

“I think our Prime Minister has struck entirely the right note in talking about this being a most exciting time in which to be alive.”

Mr Turnbull’s optimism, in his first parliamentary week as Prime Minister, was, you could be sure, growing in intensity by the moment.

He had, of course, heaped not inconsiderable veneration upon Mr Howard, introducing him as “the greatest prime minister with the possible exception of Robert Menzies.”

“I learned so much from John Howard. Every day I’m Prime Minister I’ll be benchmarking everything I do against how John Howard would have handled these challenges,” Mr Turnbull enthused.

“John Howard was the gold standard, absolutely the gold standard, in Australian government.”

Mr Howard was back in Canberra – and on days like these, it seems as if he might never have left – to launch a ramble around the parliamentary triangle in the cause of science.

Questacon, Canberra’s immensely popular national science and technology centre, has established the John Howard Walk of Wonder, an hour-long exploration of Canberra’s monumental district around the rose gardens, lawns, treed avenues and institutional buildings, complete with explanations about natural science – whether sound always echos, or why lichen grows only on one side of a tree.

It is named for John Howard because he was such a famed walker during his years as prime minister, outfitted in a green and gold tracksuit, his feet a blur.

Questacon provides a map of the walk, and, as the social media world took about half a second to note, the map looks eerily similar to the outline of a machine pistol. This may have proved awkward for the man who introduced Australia’s gun laws, but on a day like this, it seemed churlish to raise the matter.

This was, in truth, a starting pistol for the walk of a new Liberal Prime Minister, and John Howard seemed only too happy to press the trigger. All that optimism, a new future awaiting. A wonder to behold.

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Collins quashes Sandhurst speculation

ANDREW Collins has quashed talk that he will be Sandhurst’s new senior coach.

The Dragons announced late last week that they had parted ways with coach Brett Fitzpatrick and Collins’ name has been linked to the job since.

TOP OF HIS GAME: Andrew Collins is certain to remain at Bridgewater for the 2016 Loddon Valley Football Netball League season. Picture: DARREN HOWE

Collins stepped down as Bridgewater coach last month after guiding the club to a sixth-straight flag, but publicly stated he would remain with the Mean Machine as a player and as a development coach.

Collins put the Sandhurst speculation to bed on Tuesday, declaring his intentions for 2016 hadn’t changed. The former Richmond and Carlton midfielder will stay at Bridgewater and attempt to help the club win a seventh-straight LVFNL premiership.

“I don’t know where that talk is coming from, but I won’t be at Sandhurst next year,’’ Collins said.

“I’m a supporter of Sandhurst and hope that they get the best coach possible, but it won’t be me.

“Trying to win this seventh flag at Bridgewater is pretty important and it’s a great club… it’s not a club you want to leave in a hurry.”

Andrew’s father David coached Sandhurst to its most recent premiership in 2004.

“As strong as the lure is to be at Sandhurst, and I do want to play there in the future, Bridgewater is a tough place to leave,” Collins said.

Marc Lindsay has taken over the reins as senior coach of Bridgewater and Collins can’t wait to take on his new role.

“I’m excited about the development role I’m going to have with Bridgewater,’’ he said.

“I can have a real impact in helping the young players at the club.”

Collins, who won the Harding Medal for best and fairest player in the LVFNL this year, is in rehabilitation mode at the moment after undergoing a shoulder reconstruction a fortnight ago.

“It’s coming along okay,’’ he said.

“I’m in a sling for six weeks and then I’ll have a solid road back. I expect to be right to play round one.”

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OUR SAY: Roadblocks remain in place for Telopea Way-Farrell Road development

CONJECTURE: The intersection of Telpoea Way and Farrell RoadWHEN then-NSW planning minister Pru Gowardinstructed the Western Joint Regional Planning Panel to review a rejected rezoning proposal on the corner of Telopea Way and Farrell Road and take it out of Orange City Council’s hands, it was starting to look like a done deal.

Especially when rumours started to circulate that the mooted KFCand service station might not be the development of choice, it became unclear whether a rezoning to a local centre could allow anything from entertainment facilities and indoor sporting facilities to registered clubs and tourist accommodation.

But the panel’s ultimate decision to support Orange City Council’s refusal in 2012 has shown community voices are not only heard, but genuinely taken on board.

In fact, the justifications the panel used to maintain the current residential zoning virtually mirrored the concerns put forward by the council, residents and NSW Roads and Maritime Services.

It certainly would have been worrying if the proposal had gone through relying on pre-McDonald’s traffic figures.

Whether you believe the fast-food restaurant has had a detrimental impact on traffic flow or not, current traffic numbers should be a baseline requirement and it’s hard not to feel sorry for the motorists trying to exit North Orange Shopping Centreas sportsgoers leave Waratahs.

While residents have welcomed the decision, there is the ‘what now’ factor – revisions to the two intersections have improved flow, but the link road to William Maker Drive is still under construction and the council is yet to announce its plans for Clergate Road. Until these occur, it is unclear how much extra development the precinct can handle.

Residents are begging for a post office or a doctor’s surgery at the site, which are allowed without a rezoning, but quick action on the road network would make further development smoother and far less stressful for nearby landowners.

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Thumbs up from Facebook generation

South West Coast National Party candidate Michael Neoh with Euroa MP Steph Ryan in Warrnambool.WARRNAMBOOL mayor Michael Neoh is top of the social media pops among South West Coast candidates as political aspirants take their campaigns online.

Social media monitoring on Wednesday showed the National Party candidate had the most Facebook “likes” out of the South West Coast runners with 656endorsements.

Liberal Party candidate Roma Britnell was not far behind on 643 “likes”, independent candidate Roy Reekie on 555 “likes”, Greens candidate Thomas Campbell on 395, Country Party candidate Jim Doukas on 127 and independent candidate Michael McCluskey at the124 mark.

Meanwhile in the Polwarth by-election race, Liberal Party candidate Richard Riordan has the most Facebook “likes” at 559 ahead of National Party candidate David O’Brien on 185.

Country Party candidate Melinda Cass has 54 while several Polwarth nominees have failed to set up a Facebook or Twitter account.

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Enduro warning for Coast’s motorists

ORGANISERS of a national motor sport spectacle on the Coast next week have asked spectators to stay away until the final day of the event.

“We are asking the public to be aware that riders will be coming off private land and forestry roads onto public roads,” chairman of the Yamaha A4DE enduro Glenn Phillips said.

Riders taking part in the event will be limited to speeds of 60km/h on public roads and 30km/h in Wynyard.

Mr Phillips wants drivers to be mindful that competitors will be moving at slow speeds in public areas.

The enduro race will consist of 200 kilometres of trail tracks linking six test zones.

Many of the world’s best riders will compete among the 227 riders in the event, including world champion Toby Price (NSW), world No.2 Daniel Milner (Victoria), and world women’s champions Taylor Jones, Jess Gardiner and Gemma Wilson.

Local riders competing in the event are Matt Phillips and Seton Broomhall racing for the Tasmanian junior team.

Spectators are more than welcome to attend the final event of the enduro at 10am on October 24 at Blackwood Park in Penguin.

Anyone interested in volunteering at the event can sign up at 老域名a4de老域名备案老域名.

POINTING THE WAY: Matthew Eustace and Julian Moore prepare track markers for the Yamaha A4DE enduro. Picture: Grant Wells.

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