The New South Wales government is a walking, talking, collective schemozzle. A government that refuses to listen to, or at times even acknowledge, the voters who put them there. A government that is happy to coast incompetently knowing they they have the security blanket of a fixed four-year term of office that it is nigh on impossible to cut short. And the brashness of mind to think they they can be re-elected in 2011 because the Libs would be even worse.
Apart from the hysterical mantra of maintaining New South Wales' AAA credit rating (a concept that is becoming increasingly discredited in the post-Wall Street world), the inability to maintain any sort of economic focus or exercise any form of strategic co-ordination is dumbfounding. Which makes this story, from this morning's Sydney Morning Herald, less of a surprise than it should be.
According to SMH transport reporter Linton Besser,
"Taxpayers may have to compensate Sydney's private light rail operation up to 50 per cent of its earnings every year once the CBD Metro to Rozelle starts. The company has written to the Government claiming the metro would destroy its business."
But let's skipdown a few paragraphs to this apparent revelation. Gendarme cela madame:
"The Herald has learned the Government may already have breached its contract because it requires consultation with Metro Transport should it consider building a competing service. But virtually no one in the Government, including senior members of cabinet - let alone the light rail company - were consulted before the Premier, Nathan Rees, announced the project."
Dramatis personae in this farce: Metro Transport (a member of the Veolia empire) and Sydney Metro, the project set up by the New South Wales Government (a service of the NSW Labor Party conglomerate).
I'll be following this, and the many other Coq Apps of the NSW Government, with a reminder that the needful is hard, but not impossible.
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