Thursday 9 August 2007

The morning Pat asked Kevin a straight question

Yesterday on radio, ABC Far North's iconic presenter, and Yorkeys yokel Pat Morrish, Queensland Media Awards finalist, was interviewing our lovely Mayor Bern, umm Burn, I mean Byrne.

After getting more and more irritated that Port Duggie wanted little to do with his style of environmental and land mis-management, without listening to the will of the local residents, he said it was a fear campaign being mounted against him. He cited areas like Palm Cove (hint, hint, Amanda)and Clifton Beach (habitat and native forest demolished) and other areas of building growth as laudable examples of his Council's success in keeping development in check. KB , or Yasser to his mates, wants us to believe that it's all about high-rise or the 'Gold Coast syndrome' that we all are freaked out about occurring in Port when he get his paws north of Ellis Beach.

However, as a 7-year local, I don't think it's about this at all...

  • I reckon it's about the systematic removal of a number of community camping grounds over the last 6 years.
  • It's about the lack of respect for what local communities want their community to look like.
  • It's about treating our native environment and native wildlife as movable or replaceable obstacles.
  • It's about not understanding what the tourism brochures market and why over 3 million visitors a year come to see what we have to offer.
  • It's about turning Buchans Point into another apartment block.
  • It's about thinking you're smarter than a professor, calling them neanderthals and saying that we've never ever had a natural disaster ever hit in the history Cairns.
  • It's about not understanding what residents want as a place to live and what we want our children to inherit.
  • It's about missing the point when it's funny to be funny, and when it's simply a bad call to dress up with a tea towel on your head.
  • It's about realising it not a bad idea to turn up to functions on time as every councillor is a servant of the people, not the other way around.
  • It's about the mass grounds-swell of informed educated locals that want to put a stop to plunging lifestyle and visual appearance in our town.

The moment of "what the?" on Pat's show however was when the veteran broadcaster asked the incom.. incumbent mayor if he was definitely running for the mayoralty of the new Council, whatever shape it takes. I don't make up his response, but it was rude and arrogant, and made for an abrupt end to the conversation to what I thought was a normal question. "Are you running for mayor?" asked Pat. KB: "What? Where have you been. Have you been in Kuranda?" [One can only guess what the reference to living in Kuranda meant. In the absence of any explanation, we can only assume... I think KB was insinuating that living in Kuranda meant you where a hippie or living in the rainforest or a tree-hugger... who knows!? I mean, I've checked and you can actually get ABC Far North reception in Kuranda. For the record, it's 106.7 FM or 95.5 FM.

Pat relented and asked twice more as KB avoiding answering and expected Pat to know the answer already. However the role of an interviewer is to facilitate the subject to talk to their audience through the magic of radio. "Where have you been? Haven't you heard?" (I'm paraphrasing somewhat, but this was the gist... it was cripplingly cringing radio.. and this was our mayor. Arn't we meant to look up to him (or her)? Have a degree of respect and honour for this most senior posistion in our community....

After three attempts, KB finally stated he was running for the mayority in 2008, which was all Pat was asking to share her listeners. She rightfully terminated the interview.

Now Pat, it's Val's turn. I know you two girls will get on like a house on fire. Sorry Kier, I know it was bushfire awareness season at ABC last month. [Psst, Pat, Val's number is 0407 100 886. Also, share that lovely cheese scone recipe. Will be handy when you need to visit the mayoral chambers in April next year.]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Ahh - the lovely Pat, my former lower primary school teacher (it was the early 70's) and in more recent history former neighbour ;-)