Have 20,000 punters proved the haters wrong?

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FOR the last three years, Gold Coasters have been pretty vocal in their frustration during construction of our new $1.2 billion light rail network.

[blockquote]“It’s a waste of tax dollars,” they said.[/blockquote]

[blockquote]“An expensive eyesore,” they said.[/blockquote]

[blockquote]“No one will ride the G:link. How long before it’s scrapped?” they said.[/blockquote]

Some people have had every right to feel frustrated, impatient and outright angry.

With all the construction and disruption in certain areas, customers all but disappeared. Hundreds of businesses were impacted, with many forced to shut up shop completely.

Losing your livelihood is something you have every right to be seriously upset about.

But to everyone else? To the whingers and whiners who were barely impacted during construction, bar the odd traffic jam through Surfers, but who continued to complain, loudly, about everything that’s wrong with the G:link?

To those people I say, grow up!

The fact is – we need it.

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The Gold Coast is expanding. We’re not in Kansas any more, Toto. Our population has reached almost 600,000 people, and we’re growing every week.

In 10 years time, if we want to be able to get to work, drop the kids to school, run errands, visit our mates – basically, if we want to get around the Gold Coast at all without sitting in traffic for an hour each way, then we need bigger and better forms of public transport than the old Surfside bus.

On Sunday, the tram transported more than 80,000 people around the city to give Gold Coasters a free taste of the light rail.

On Monday, around 20,000 Gold Coast commuters handed over their hard-earned cash – between $4 and $6 one-way – to ride the tram on its first day of paid operation. Some carriages were standing room only.

This is a great result! It means less cars on the roads, less vehicles in car parks, less pollution in the air.

I just don’t understand why some people seem so determined for the tram to fail, especially now that all the hard work is done. I for one am glad that so far, fears of “ghost trams” remain unrealised.

I’ve noticed one other unplanned benefit of the tram…

Riding between Southport and Surfers on Sunday, I couldn’t believe the number of people who were on their phones. Not on the tram – I’m talking about people in cars. At one point, we paused near traffic lights and of the 20-odd cars waiting for the light to turn green, I could see that all of them were engrossed in their phone. It’s an easy way for police to book dialer drivers is all I’m saying.

Methinks there may be more people riding the G:link to work than anticipated.

The Meddler

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Are we Stuckey in the Sydney bubble?

USUALLY we feel a little angry at the money spent on expensive tourism campaigns that ignore the Gold Coast in a futile attempt to promote other less excellent parts of Queensland.

But the latest marketing campaign is all Brisbane’s.

Yep, we don’t want anything to do with it.

Currumbin MP and Tourism Minister Jann Stuckey is under fire for a ridiculous campaign that doesn’t mention Queensland at all but makes Sydney look like a damn, fine place to visit.

Designed by Sydney-based Pedestrian.TV, a series of videos have been released on their website for what is supposedly a Give Me Brisbane Any Day campaign.

They consist of a cool dude with microphone stopping other cool dudes in Bondi, Manly, Surry Hills and Newtown to ask them what they love about where they live.

What’s the best bakery in Surry Hills?

What is the best beach in Sydney?

How many gears are on your bike? Huh?

And, my favourite: Would you ever leave Surry Hills?

Answer: Not any time soon.

Umm, not the answer we were after.

The very happy looking hipsters go into great detail about why their local areas are so fabulous and at no point is anything about Queensland mentioned.

If you click on a banner which asks ‘Are you stuck in the Sydney bubble?’ you are taken to the Facebook page of Pedestrian.TV where I also couldn’t find anything about Queensland.

I did however find a post from Pedestrian.TV criticising Ms Stuckey’s mate Prime Minister Tony Abbott over the repeal of the climate change legislation with the comment “I’m not saying everything’s f..ked, but … Everything’s pretty f..ked.”

Eventually I found the link ‘Produced in association with our mates at Tourism and Events Queensland.’

This led me to a Visit Brisbane website which mocks Sydney-siders for putting up with three-month waiting lists for their favourite restaurant.

“So if you’ve ever said “I really need a decaf latte on almond milk and a punnet of goji berries, stat”, there’s a good chance you’re deep in the Sydney bubble,’ sneers the blurb.

“But it’s ok. All you need is a weekend escape to a place overflowing with adventure and new discoveries – a place called Brisbane.”

So basically, it is suggesting Sydney-siders are all wankers.

Yep, Brisbane can have this one all to itself.

The Meddler

Here’s your chance to get your opinion in front of a larger audience. And earn a dollar! Anything from the minutiae to the meaningful, the heartfelt to the humorous, if you’ve got an issue or a rant you think Gold Coasters need to read submit it to The Meddler. There’s $50 for each contribution published. Contributions should be under 400 words, please supply contact details including a phone number. The Meddler reserves the right to edit articles submitted. Please send to news@mygc.com.au

With fans like these who needs enemies?

FOR a couple of hundred thousand dollars I am willing to conduct a brisk inquiry into the Titan’s poor performance and hand down my insightful findings ASAP.

No need to employ expensive ‘experts’ to launch sweeping reviews.

I am quite happy to do it for a bargain price.

Right, the inquiry has concluded.

My findings are the Titans are failing because they are playing like crap.

Now where is my money?

Seriously, it’s a game folks.

I can’t believe so-called fans have launched websites, Twitter accounts, Facebook pages and designed merchandise in a ‘Sack Carty’ campaign to get rid of coach John Cartwright.

It’s absolutely vicious.

If Cartwright wanted to he could make much more money out of defamation suits from what they are saying about him then he is owed if his contract is cancelled.

Too bad they can’t put all that passion and energy into doing something that might actually make the world a better place to live.

Titan bosses have succumbed to the pressure and have announced a ‘sweeping review’ of all aspects of the club’s operation.

Let’s not hold back, they should call in the Feds and ASIO to check things out.

ICAC might have a bit of time on their hands now as well.

Yes, I know rugby league is also big business with all the risks of fraud, corruption and cheating anything involving lots of money has.

But this is about team performance.

The Titan’s board admitted something had to be done because crowds and revenue were being affected by the team’s poor performance.

But the team’s poor performance might also be affected by their so-called fans ditching them as soon as they hit a bad patch.

In fact, even when they were winning the crowds were down.

So the review might also want to look into why the Titan’s has such fickle fans.

Because isn’t the reason for poor sporting performances often psychological?

The Titans have some NRL superstars in their team.

They all train hard and seem to have all the right muscles in the right places.

At the beginning of the season they were flying high – in a good way – before injuries took a toll.

There is not much you can do about that.

The Meddler

Here’s your chance to get your opinion in front of a larger audience. And earn a dollar! Anything from the minutiae to the meaningful, the heartfelt to the humorous, if you’ve got an issue or a rant you think Gold Coasters need to read submit it to The Meddler. There’s $50 for each contribution published. Contributions should be under 400 words, please supply contact details including a phone number. The Meddler reserves the right to edit articles submitted. Please send to news@mygc.com.au

The master has spoken

Freudian slip: an error in speech that is interpreted as occurring due to the interference of an unconscioussubdued wish or train of thought.

I always enjoy a good slip of the tongue.

It often says a lot about the slipper and what he thinks about the slippee.

During a farcical budget estimates hearing on Tuesday, Premier Campbell SuperNewman tried to display a more humble side after his recent ‘saviour of the state’ declarations.

Smugly enjoying his clear advantage over the Opposition after rejigging the estimates system to suit the government, SuperNewman embarrassingly stumbled during one of his planned spiels.

“Every single day, we are working to make this government perform for Queenslanders,” he said, his hand on his heart and red cape fluttering from the carefully placed wind machine.

“They’re our servants … sorry … they’re our masters, we’re their servants and we are working for them every single day.”

Oh dear.

Of course you won’t find it in the official Hansard record because someone thoughtfully changed it.

Or was asked to change it.

Or perhaps he just utilised one of his most used super powers to wind back the clock and say the speech again.

This super power might explain why Queensland sometimes seems to be back in the 1950s lately.

In the past, estimates, though occasionally tedious, played a vital role in keeping governments accountable on what they were spending.

With seven hearing days over two weeks, some huge scandals were revealed.

But after some careful LNP manipulation, there are now only two sitting days with seven hearings being held simultaneously each day.

So instead of a prolonged and organised inquiry into the government’s spending, they now only have one Opposition MP desperately trying to get answers to where the money is going.

Like Deputy Premier Jeff ‘Frequent Flyer’ Seeney spending about $200,000 a year on traveling to and from home every week by private plane.

The Newman Government, at the moment, has an unholy majority, there is no upper house to check this power, the CMC has been watered down, the Opposition is next to useless, the media is depleted and the estimate hearings have been nobbled.

So nothing to worry about.

The Meddler

Here’s your chance to get your opinion in front of a larger audience. And earn a dollar! Anything from the minutiae to the meaningful, the heartfelt to the humorous, if you’ve got an issue or a rant you think Gold Coasters need to read submit it to The Meddler. There’s $50 for each contribution published. Contributions should be under 400 words, please supply contact details including a phone number. The Meddler reserves the right to edit articles submitted. Please send to news@mygc.com.au

Why we are stuck with crap reality stars and dud politicians

LAST night I had an epiphany.

As I was watching The Voice and shaking my head in disbelief at the singers the viewers had chosen to go through to the final, I realised these same people vote for our politicians.

This is a problem.

Actually, there are two problems – one being that I was actually watching The Voice.

But the other was that, true to form, pretty boys with only mediocre voices were selected over some of the magnificently talented women who had wowed the crowd right through the series.

Now, I’m not using this as an example of gender bias in Australia but as an illustration of how little thought some people put into their votes both on TV and at the ballot box.

I have absolutely no proof of this other than my rather thin theory on the crap singers left on The Voice and the rather crap politicians we seem to be stuck with at the moment.

It can only be that the same people who vote for cute boys with long hair and short voices are also responsible for getting politicians like Clive Palmer into Parliament.

Wait. No. That theory doesn’t work. Sorry.

Ok, let’s just leave it at voters rapidly losing interest in our political mess and not putting enough thought into their selections anymore.

They are then stunned when they realise the winners are complete duds so viciously hit out like angry toddlers at the next election.

As some shock results of state and federal elections in the past few years have shown, Australian voters are becoming more and more intolerant of the major parties and will turn on their politicians faster than a feral dog.

This could lead to near landslides at every election as voters giddily weave and bounce from one side to the other – or one new party to another.

Not so much swinging voters anymore with a rhythmic sway but a bloody huge wrecking ball.

Voters are no longer sitting on their verandas with a baseball bat, as former premier Wayne Goss so unpatriotically put it.

Now they are waiting there with a bulldozer, revving the engine, spinning the wheels.

But Clive Palmer? Seriously?

The Meddler

Here’s your chance to get your opinion in front of a larger audience. And earn a dollar! Anything from the minutiae to the meaningful, the heartfelt to the humorous, if you’ve got an issue or a rant you think Gold Coasters need to read submit it to The Meddler. There’s $50 for each contribution published. Contributions should be under 400 words, please supply contact details including a phone number. The Meddler reserves the right to edit articles submitted. Please send to news@mygc.com.au