David Bennett (November 29) incorrectly states Australian "eucalyptus forest has developed as it has because fires happen".
In May 1832, as one of the first whites to visit the area, British surveyor Robert Hoddle named Black Hill due to the scorched earth he saw, which was the result of the burning of the area by Aboriginals.
Repeated burning by Australia's first people of that hill meant grasses could be grown, grasses they could harvest the seeds from to feed their community.
Searching Google Earth today reveals the hill on the outskirts of Canberra, now known as Black Mountain, is now forested. It has been the lack of fire that caused Black Mountain forest to develop.
This is one example where indigenous people controlled where afforestation would develop, at sites that suited their community needs. Their community included wildlife and therefore forests were an essential component of the shared environment.
Over more than 200 years forests have been allowed to develop, leading Emeritus Professor Bill Gammage, among others, to opine there are now more trees in Australia than there were prior to European settlement.
It can be argued then, David, that the real problem of bushfires in Australia is the arrogant mindset of non-indigenous Australians in failing to acknowledge the intellectual musculature of the nation's first people. For they had been able to develop the land, in a readily acknowledged harsh environment, to an extent that explorers and first settlers commonly termed the word "parks" when writing what they were seeing in their diaries. Early landscape paintings by artists commissioned by white landholders reinforce that description.
Arriving with a European agricultural mindset has had a severe impact on many aspects of the Australian environment that today's generations are having to endure.
Recognising the fundamental mistake outlined above is the first step to remedying the situation, one that will take a lot of political will and time.
Letters: Doctors' opposition to bill overstated
You published a rant by Mike Hosking suggesting that banks are responsible and wise enough to be deregulated.
In fact, deregulated banks, mainly in the US, caused the global financial crisis through derivatives and irresponsible lending.
Presumably, Hosking is one of those who believed that Donald Trump is responsible and wise?
For a private school to try to solicit public school money for their own use seems a bit on the nose.
Especially, didn't I just read yesterday that the Tamakis have just bought a $1.5million house?
I would have thought, if they were serious about schooling, they would have put their own money into their school before trying to bludge off the taxpayers.
Speed trap rort
I am a law-abiding, conviction-free citizen. I have no demerit points on my licence.
Six weeks ago, police installed a mobile speed camera van in my street, parked on a downward slope.
I now have six tickets for speeds of 54km, 55km, and 56km an hour.
The common car speedometer is not accurate in measuring speed this precisely. Neither, I discover, are mobile camera vans.
So now I have requested six court cases, in which I will challenge every ticket issued to me to date.
These speed trap rorts are popping up all over the place, for the sole purpose of gathering revenue for the Government's consolidated fund.
Not only do mobile speed camera vans not improve safety, they alienate the citizenry from the police.
My only option now is to clog the court system with legitimate appeals against the tickets.
If you are on the unjust end of a pedantic speeding infringement – please feel free to join me.
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