But other stories in the last week are demonstrating how off-kilter government - of either party - has become.
A car runs off the Kennedy Highway between Smithfield and Cairns. The driver is spared serious injury because their car was restrained - not by a guardrail, but by ANOTHER WRECKED CAR. This spot is notorious for car crashes, with the cars usually ending up down the hillside. Why has government ignored this notorious blackspot?
|FROM BUTTOCK TO PLATE -|
YOU THINK WE'RE KIDDING?
The fruit in question, now known to have been imported from China, has NEVER been inspected. Anywhere. The Chinese don't care. The Australian packager surely has shown they don't care - the facts show that instead of being suspicious about the product being supplied by the Chinese, they instead gave the Chinese supplier LESS supervision. Because supervision costs money, and the million dollar CEO's are all about saving money.
And then we find the government, who we've made responsible for the health and safety of imported food, says "there is no regular government testing of imported (food) product".
This despite small fruits like berries being known to easily carry and transmit Hep-A. In fact the market for fresh berries in China is virtually non-existent. The Chinese people KNOW how these things are grown. Do you?
Much of Chinese produce is grown on farms that get regular doses of Chinese fertilizer - euphemistically called "night soil" (粪便) in China. We call unprocessed sewage. Straight from your buttock to plate.
And our government's Department of Agriculture's "Centre for Excellence for Biosecurity Risk Analysis" spends billions of taxpayer dollars every year NOT testing one piece of imported food. A "risk analysis" that should have shown that small fruits and ground-hugging vegetables are likely to be high risk from a country like China, and develop a testing regime for industry and government.
The politicians would prefer to divide the electorate into "those that want big government" and "those that want small government". This trick is starting to wear a little thin, because that's not what the public wants at all. Campbell Newman claimed he was one of those that wanted smaller government, but his profligate spending on junk we don't really need, and then plans to sell off assets to pay for MORE junk we didn't need is what caused the voters to turn on him. Some well-placed guardrails on the Kuranda range wouldn't be too much to ask. But road upgrades aren't a matter of "public safety", they're a political reward doled out at elections.
That's how Michael Trout ultimately lost. The picture of him standing on the Kuranda range with Newman, promising to fix this long-broken highway as an election bribe was the key that turned the tide against him.
There's an old phrase - "stick to your knitting", that we believe describes very well what the voters on either side of the political fence want from our government. Spend our money smartly on things that make us safer - a competent military, an honest police force, and government services that ensure our water is safe, our food is safe, our homes are safe, and our families are safe.
A "Biosecurity Centre" that has no plan in place to intercept and reject food so likely to be contaminated that the Chinese people won't eat it isn't doing their job. Regardless of whatever party is in power.