[Forum] I read with interest a letter from Robert Findley dated December 6, 2019, regarding 100,000 men and women needed to be trained for all emergencies.
In the war years (1939-1945), Australians had Australia’s greatest Prime Minister, John Curtain, in charge.
Curtain could see that Australia was open to invasion, so on April, 14, 1942, he formed the Civil Constructional Corps (CCC), and at its peak, it had a membership of 53,518 employees.
The CCC had men working all over Australia building infrastructure, with its main workforce building rail lines and an airstrip, as well as aerodromes at Tocumwal, NSW, which, when it was completed, was the largest airstrip and aerodrome in the southern hemisphere.
The voters of NSW and Australia have never looked at the past.
In Mr Findley’s article, he mentions the 1974 Darwin cyclone.
In 1974, my late brother, who was employed by the Sydney County Council, was asked by the head of council whether he would lead a team of electrical tradesmen to Darwin to repair and rebuild 68 substations, as substations were my brother’s speciality.
He took the position and lead 25 electrical tradespersons to Darwin and his team put 68 substations back into service in record time.
This could not happen again, because in 1988, the NSW Premier and his Transport Minister changed the name of the Sydney County Council, made workers redundant, and NSW lost thousands of years of experience, and the safety and repairs of Sydney electricity.
At the same time, the Transport Minister closed all rail workshops across NSW, including the apprentice training college at Chullora, which was known as the best training college in Australia.
It trained young persons in all types of trades, which was a benefit to the NSW railways and also to Australia’s manufacturers.
Yet the NSW voters still vote without looking at the past.
On April 17, 2014, NSW have a new Premier, by coincidence with the same surname as the NSW Transport Minister in the late 1980’s, so what does this Premier do, he sells the poles and wires for $16B, when the true value was close to $32B, then the Premier left office on January 24, 2017, but during his time as Premier, electricity prices kept going up and up.
Yet the NSW voters still voted the same party back in.
I thank my lucky stars that the present Prime Minister was not around in the war years.
Letter, Dec 12
Vic Wulf, Gosford