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Government needs a say in gas and electricity

Regarding government housing policy, your correspondent says: I couldn’t agree more. But since John Howard was prime minister, the housing market has been heavily skewed in favor of investors with negative gearing and capital gain exemptions unavailable to homeowners. Home prices in all markets are being pushed to artificially high levels. As is well known, many such properties remain vacant for most of his year, as investors use them primarily as vacation homes and occasionally he rents them on Airbnb. If this government gets serious about dealing with the housing crisis, it will undoubtedly make a lot of real estate affordable to owners and occupiers, with the profits currently being given to investors slashed. It will be like this. Martin Yeomans, Sapphire Beach

The disclosure of politicians’ multiple home assets for investment reveals how far we are from viewing housing as a human right for all.Most state legislators own multiple properties”, October 26). Generous discounts in negative gearing and capital gains tax breaks continue to benefit the already wealthy. While we continue to treat housing as an investment, the young and the less wealthy will never know the joy of owning their own home. Robin Thomas, Wahroonga

Sydney high-value projects

It’s good that Rob Stokes raises the issue of carbon costs of over-engineering, but given the high economic and environmental costs of reliance on cars, adequate public transport rather than road tunnels How good would it be if we had invested in Confirmed that land release developments around cities are not fully dependent on cars for their daily functions (“Big Build Cripples Net Zero: Minister”, October 26)? Gina Hay, Bayview

Stokes is right to consider megaprojects to ensure that taxpayers receive value and the environment is not harmed, but why stop there? Equally worth the money spent by the government and the value it provides in protecting the environment. Replacing the steps to the Sydney Harbor Bridge Cycleway at Milsons Point could be a small sum of cash for big government. Well, at $1 million per step, it’s not worth it. Affected parties continue to seek the minister’s hearing on the matter. Ian Cardy, Lavender Bay

Boulder Population to Sydney’s Future

The head of the Greater Sydney Commission believes Sydney, a city of five million, should be like Boulder, Colorado, a city of 100,000 (“Getting smarter: Planning chief’s big complaints about ‘clean’ Sydney”, October 26). Small cities are attractive places to live, as evidenced by the massive exodus from post-COVID Sydney and Melbourne. It’s time to discuss the optimal population before Sydney loses all its natural beauty and livability. Anne Matheson, Gordon

NDIS needs fixing

The recent revelations of widespread corruption in Medicare by some members of the medical profession do not bode well for the future of the NDIS (“Ophthalmologist Eyelash Rotation”, October 26). With hundreds of billions of dollars at stake in the next few years, we are already seeing reports of corruption by unscrupulous care providers. Without it, many people with disabilities could be deprived of the care they need. Bill Shorten warns that this is a priority for the Albanian government. Let’s hope he is right. Greg Thomas, Annandale

back to the future

Due to the increased cost and complexity of maintaining information in digital form, and the potential for hacking and subsequent identity theft, it may be necessary to resort to other means of data storage and communication (seeEmergency response to the scale of the Medibank breach”, October 26). Perhaps there’s a return to pen, paper, filing cabinets, mail, and landlines in cards? Robert Ballinger, Pymble

trump’s wild west

credit:Illustrated by Matt Golding

Donald Trump’s utter incompetence should disqualify him once again from being the best in America (“Trump 2024: Trick or Treat”, October 26). But what makes it impossible to understand Nick Bryant’s opinion that Trump has great potential is his utter moral misconduct. This is not an election based on Trump’s ability to do the job. He has already demonstrated his inability to reveal. If Trump wins the 2024 election, it reveals the moral decline of America, which will seek to re-appoint fake fascists, serial fabulists, bullies, malicious narcissists, and those who disregard the dignity and worth of women. will be Trump has been ridiculed by his Republican Party’s inner egotist peers by the Republican Party as a whole, his evangelical Christian base, and in particular by US citizens who believe confrontation with the already marginalized citizens equals strength. Together we will join the gutter. The Wild West will return and democracy will collapse. Trevor Somerville, Irawong

A lesson on school finances

Every dollar from state finances used to support private education is deducted from all education funding (letter, October 26). Private school students receive a percentage of state funding per student based on public student quotas. Additionally, private schools receive federal funding because the federal government states that public education is a state responsibility. It is a mistake to suggest that it saves government money. In that case, private schools would not receive funding and millions of dollars allocated would be spent elsewhere. Again, it is the privileged class that seeks to justify greed when it is clearly not necessary. As Ken Boston wrote, state money given to private schools frees the budget from educational purposes and allows it to be directed toward fancy facilities that public schools can’t afford. Augusta Monroe Dural

Private schools have always existed and will always exist because there are cohorts of people who feel that their children benefit from attending school. The claim that all students deserve some funding regardless of school choice is unrealistic. In reality, the state’s duty is to ensure that all students have access to education, and this is achieved by providing freely accessible public educational facilities. Robert Hodge, Arncliffe

The idea that all students are entitled to some amount of government funding is absurd. If you choose to opt out of publicly funded systems, that’s fine. The government provides public transportation, but I don’t expect the government to subsidize the purchase of a car if I decide I don’t want to take the bus.
John Bailey canterbury

Hancock’s Horrifying History

If it weren’t for the current netball frenzy, few people would have heard of Lang Hancock’s infamous remarks in 1984 (letter, October 26). It would have been confined to a very horrific history. Tim Egan, Mosman

Warm World Wake Up

The pleasure you get from the Wordle or Quordle your correspondent spoke of goes far beyond the satisfaction of solving it (“A word of advice: don’t let Quordle drag you in”, October 26).
Before I jump out of bed each morning, a close friend and I exchange solutions, accompanied by greetings, comments about the weather, and so on. It’s the beginning of a warm day. Elizabeth Maher Bangor

writing stuff

As Judy Hungerford notes, her grandmother “lacked the masculine faculties necessary to write to a newspaper” (letter, October 26). Still, she made history with her finely crafted quill and ink notes and left them on the kitchen table for her family.

“You have to prepare your own food tonight. increase.”

We like to think of that “giant regiment of women” like her with a pen in her hand. Ronald Elliot, Sandringham (Vic)

Your correspondent’s father used his wife’s name to Herald, it was published in the 1940s. Usually it was the other way around. Her one of our greatest poets, Gwen Harwood (1920-1995), sent her first book of poetry to a publisher, but she was dismissed as “The Tasmanian Housewife”. She then resorted to her trickery and used various male pseudonyms with much success. We don’t know if Harwood wrote to her editor, but she certainly found the time to write, and she’s also the mother of four children, including twins. Maureen Casey, Breakfast Point

digital view

Online comments from one of the stories that garnered the most reader feedback yesterday smh.com.au
Join the dots: Your taxes are going up, not down
from megaphone: “If you don’t budget, it’s kind of a bummer. Labor inherited the mess from the coalition.”

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