IN defence of Israel Folau.
He is entitled to his beliefs.
As indeed are the non-believers.
What if we just left it that?
What if Rugby Australia simply said: "Israel you are our brother and team mate. Respect us and what we hold to be true and we will respect you." What then?
Is he free to articulate his beliefs? One would think so.
Israel, believing a homosexual will go to hell, is not wishing that upon them. Can we get our heads around this?
Is it a lack of respect? I genuinely don't think so.
The best way to challenge such beliefs is to engage, and not ostracise.
We are very slow learners, us human beings. If Israel was standing for office, or promoting the persecution of gays here on earth, a far different matter.
He is a football player. Let's test him where it counts.
Can he conduct himself with dignity in the company of those who disagree with him? When he puts the jumper on, he represents his country.
When he tweets from his own personal account, he is just himself.
Tony Newport, Hillwood.
THE Premier and one of his ministers were exonerated from political interference in the cricket employment saga.
It should come as no surprise that this had happened.
Some decades ago governments throughout the nation legislated to deny the rights of public servants to speak out on various issues, with loss of employment should they do so.
This was a direct attack on the democratic system, and more the sort of thing to be expected from a one-party state.
Wimpy politicians wanting a free ride and to be able to hide from scrutiny brought this about.
It is, therefore, the result of this we now have a situation where there is a lack of trust and public confidence in the system; hence hung parliaments and a rise in minor parties to ensure they are kept in check.
Who in the political apparatus is going to have the back bone to repeal this insidious legislation and restore confidence and trust?
Neil White, Riverside.
BARNABY Joyce's plan of taking up the "Bradfield plan" in diverting Northern rivers inland, first mooted in the early 30s, has much merit and would have many added effects, such as diverting farm run off from the Barrier Reef.
Flooding much of the Australian inland would also attract more rain to most drought-affected areas, while adding growth of future plant life which, over time, could be instrumental in the greening of Australia, eventually attracting further future farming in an ever-increasing Australian population.
Perhaps it could also incorporate water from the "Ord scheme".
Canberra politicians would be well advised to consider such a plan with so much to recommend it and little against, apart from initial expense with long-term pluses.
It has also been a long-held view of this writer, and any future thinking leader whom adopted such an idea would certainly gain my vote.
Don Davey, Launceston.
What is a Fair Go?
THE abolition of franking credits for some and not others seems way off the mark.
If a retired couple (a) have $825,000 in assets, including car and furniture etc, they would have at most about $800,000 to invest.
If they are prepared to take the risk of higher returns by investing in shares at, say, 5 per cent, they would earn about $40,000 per annum.
If couple (b) had $387,000 less car/furniture etc they could invest about $260,000 which at 5 per cent would earn $13,000, plus franking credits of about $5,000, giving them an annual income of $18,000, plus a full pension of $36,300 per annum, equating to an income of $54,300 per annum.
Why should couple (a) being frugal and funding their retirement and receiving no pension or franking credits be expected to live off less than couple (b), while also missing out on all the perks that a pension provides.
I know Labor wants retirees to run down their capital, but with people living longer and who knows what end of life care may be needed or cost, who wants to die in poverty?
No doubt inflation will also return to normal levels, which also strips away retirees' buying power as they have no way of replacing capital.
The above makes a mockery of Labor's "A fair go for all".
Graeme Barwick, Riverside.
Franking Credit Refunds
TO all the whingers complaining about Bill Shorten's promise to stop franking credit refunds, if you receive these refunds you are defrauding Australian taxpayers aided and abetted by the Liberal federal government.
Why the hell should anyone, especially people who can afford shares, get a refund of money that they haven't paid in the first place?
The whole idea, and recipients of refunds, are a disgrace.
I'm sure all pensioners and all other people on welfare payments would like a small percentage of what these fraudsters get for no reason.