Although this is the first week we've seen anything about "Council Corner" in Rupert Murdoch's 'Gold Coast Sun', Mr Dickson's already received three letters, including this one from Lorraine Campbell:
In Auckland, they have a scheme where there is free bus travel for pensioners between 9am and 3pm. A special card is sent out to home address pensioners only, and that has to be presented on boarding the services. Don't you feel this system could be implemented into the buses on the Coast and Brisbane and you would find people who have no other from of transport would be out spending their money in the cities. Surely this is worth thinking about, or even a reducation fare for a day out. Everyone would benefit.
Intriguingly, he's even replied to these letters!:
In All major cities in Australia, public transport is managed by the State Governments, rather than local councils. In Queensland, Translink is the responsible State agency and I shall contact Translink with your valid suggestion. Council recognises the need to provide low-cost transport options for the elderly and those with a disability. The Council Cab Service was established to enable older people and those with a disability to travel, for only $2 each way, from their home to their local shopping centre. This successful service has expanded and now operates across 48 suburbs throughout the city.
We think Lorraine has a good point. Although public transport should be free for all citizens - and all the time.
And this "Council Corner" is bullshit.
Even though Lorraine obviously has ESP - how else did she and the other letter writers know to write to "Council Corner"? - we think she should be directing her queries about Council services to her local Councillor or directly to Mr Dickson himself:
Mr Dale Dickson
Chief Executive Officer
Gold Coast City Council
PO Box 5042
Gold Coast MC 9729
She could even write to her state and/or federal member - after all, 2010 is a federal election year - along with other locally based newsletters/blogs and Australian owned media publications.
In addition, Lorraine could discuss her ideas with friends, family, National Seniors and any other community groups of which she may be a member.
She shouldn't consent to her concerns being used so cynically by the Murdoch press for their own commercial ends.
The Murdoch Press doesn't care about Australia, it doesn't care about Australians, it doesn't care about you and it certainly doesn't care about public transport.
Tell Media Watch when you see examples of Murdoch press bogusity such as this.