Saturday 5 January 2008

The King of Narrow-mindedness

Gavin King is the king of headlines.
Or at least in his own mind.
In a predicable triad of "move with the times" and "no more room for the good old days attitude" he tries to justify his right wing rhetoric and argues to destroy a valuable and important piece of Cairns' history.
Gavin writes one of the most inconsistent columns in the News Ltd stable, in the Weekend Post.
Every Saturday he pours out a high pressure piece for all to digest, or re digest their breakfast with.
Today's was an amazing tirade against those who wish to save the Cairns Yacht and Aquatic Club, boxed in behind the converging waterfront high rises.
King's suggestion that objectors should move somewhere else "more suited to your antiquated tastes" begs the question.... Why not King and his mate Kevin and any developers who also agree move to China?
Most of the water is not potable, air pollution to die for, traffic jams, developer bribes and a government that silences any opposition. But hey, its a developers dream!
With attitudes like Mayor Byran's and Gavin King's leading this community, we will end up with a bland, concrete clad monosyllabic high rise hell of a town.
In a great contradiction, King advocates to save Radio jock John McKenzie's neighbourhood from the onslaught of developers, yet demolish the Yacht Club building some few blocks in the other direction!
Why shouldn't there be room for a variety of facilities and places that the locals call theirs?
As regular CairnsBlog contributor says, it leaves no doubt on which side of the development fence Gavin King sits on and what his newspaper will back in promoting. We all need to be weary of this in the build up to the March local body elections..
Jude rightfully points out that the major growth in Cairns is the building industry. "It seems the Mantra 'build it they will come' attitude is alive and well. But who will come? The Tourists - nah who wants to come and look at a concrete towers and drive along roads..." she says.
The Cairns Plan has adequate sustainable growth built in, however it is the Council not sticking to their Plan that causes the problems. Council can say no to the developer when they want a Material Change of use, but they don't. Jude points out that Cairns City Council will use the "we'll get sued" rebuttal.
Like many, I will personally throw in a hundred bucks for a one way ticket for those willing to depart.


Anonymous said...

And where did Gavin King work before he came to Cairns? The vibrant, pulsating, star studded, resort filled, multicultural centre of the Universe (and Australia)- Alice Springs! From one great newspaper to another! Cairns must be like Disneyland to him - no wonder he has no real idea of what he is writing about. Perhaps the glitter of the Gold Coast could entice him if we all throw a few bucks in for the air fare?

Anonymous said...

Poor tormented Gavin,

Imagine the anguish he went through in naming his column? Finally settling on “the King” leaving the capital off the "T" in an attempt to down play things (ego?). There’s no doubt he has worked his way through the ranks to where he is now “Post’s Chief of Staff “ yet unfortunately with so many large corporations, it’s your business managements skills and lack of touch with reality that brings promotion. This may or may not be Gavin’s case but it’s abhorrently clear he’s never dabbled in the ancient art of investigative journalism.
Even a primary school student with an as yet untainted sense of decency could more aptly disseminate the truth in relation to many of Council/Developer dealings!
Didn’t Council have a hissing fit with the Post over an alleged breach of procedure by locking out one of the Post’s reporters?
Didn’t Council then pull all it’s advertising from this same publication? Aside from the regulatory notices it had to place that is.
As a resident I hope Gavin actually visits one of these monoliths (sorry Gav you have to get out of the aircond car and walk around these things to fully appreciate their impact) then he might report with a more balanced approach in his articles.
We know who pays the bills but if they want to sell anything they’ll be back spending with you soon enough!

Best Wishes
Enough Rope

Anonymous said...

Gee, I wonder it Gav gets excited at funerals too?
He has no idea locals and vistors to our region are mouring the slow death of a beautiful little town. We know that the death is now inevitable and the deterioration is happening before our eyes as our home becomes little more than a memory. Gav heckles us, as we struggle to let go of the coffin as our town slips silently into its grave. How cruel.
All we are asking is that the new Cairns be worthy of the old one who died giving birth it it.
To honour its memory and not become an even crappy version of the Gold Coast when it could so easily become a unique, livable and substainable place.
Somewhere, that the old Cairns would have been proud of.
Gav, we understand life must go on and we are know we must accept the changes but give us a minute to adjust and if once in awhile we shed a tear for what we lost, please don't be so harsh. It's hard for us, especially when we see our home being cheapend and destroyed beyond all recognition with inappropriate developments.
You laugh and scoff at our grief and call us hypocrites because we use the services that development has brought us...(like we have a choice) but I bet you have a "home " to back to when you want to show someone where you came from... where do Cairns people go when they want to go "home".
PS. As for the Yacht Club, do you think anyone would mind if we just picked up the Sydney Opera House and plonked it down somewhere else?(After all it's just a place where people gather to listen to live music )
That's a prime piece of real estate... how many million dollar harbour view apartments do you reckon could be built on that site?

Anonymous said...

The article today in the CP by Gavin King is just some spin doctoring, you know, wonderful all this development is. It is one of a series of like-articles that the CP have been running lately. One this week was all about the billions of construction dollars pouring into Cairns, another one today is where best to buy on the northern beaches (I note in that story that there was no mention of the rock wall on the Clifton waterfront blocking all those “sold” million dollar views and I seriously question the number of “solds” quoted). You can't give away houses at Clifton at the moment so not sure where all those buyers are or are coming from! Someone I know has had their house on the market for about 6/12 and had no one to even look through for the last 3/12.

In response to Gavin’s taunts about those “long term locals who bitch and moan about development,” here is another view point.

Lou Robson (Courier Mail – Nov 11, 2007) wrote an article called “Developer’s eye for potential disaster”

In this article, she likens developers to ‘locusts.’

This is her article…..
...Developers were babies once. Members of the white-shoe brigade were newborns, their blood untainted and small hearts pure. But something happened….

Somewhere along the line, they morphed, their small mouths became money hungry and their once seeing eyes sought for the sprawl of civilization. A sea of concrete and condos. Malls and multiplexes, resorts and restaurants.

Did their parents teach them this or was it inherent? A deep need to develop, to resume, to rezone, to subdivide and conquer.

Alone in their high-rise offices they surround themselves with artist’s impressions. Nurse single-malt scotch and watch the images come to life: wet bars and walk-in robes, car parks and penthouses, outdoor eateries and glass fronted lifts.

On the Gold Coast, they were locusts. A heavy cloud that descended in the late ‘50s and remain to pick at remnants, devouring sand dunes and linking suburbs. No one wanted it to happen.

The people who live there loved their undeveloped beachfront, but developers and their local government allies are all powerful.

Their bonds made in back rooms of dusty council chambers, are unbreakable. And what a job they have done.

And now they push north. Stepping silently from their dark Mercedes and BMWs, they slip seven figure offers under locked front doors. Coolum compared with the rest is a little behind the times. Height restrictions make it impossible for the brigade to properly penetrate – but they are trying.

Little men with big plans who want literally, to take paradise and put up a parking lot.

At Stumer’s Creek, developers have created a master plan. Replace the small, adequate car park and Besser toilet block with an 80-space car park, amphitheatre and central stage. Bulldoze bushland, home to thumb sized green hummingbirds, and “beautify” what is already one of the most beautiful places on earth: a simple beach, park and off-leash area frequented by barefoot locals and their happy dogs 365 days a year. Its all sand dunes and banksias trees, sweeping tides and pandanus shadows.

The kind of place a developer might have enjoyed as a child, but now stepping gingerly in expensive boat shoes, sees nothing but potential.....

Doesn’t this narrative sound familiar?

Well, the locusts have definitely landed in Cairns and they are devouring everything in sight. They are turning anything of value and not just in economic terms, particularly open green spaces, heritage areas, absolute beachfront such as Argentea (Clifton), bulldozing our natural bushland and turning it into concrete, high rise condos and resorts. Just how many luxury resorts can a place like Cairns support and their slick glossy brochures, tell us that they all are all luxury, 5 star, individually designed, exclusive, master planned, paradise is being created, spacious architecturally designed interiors, unique limited opportunity, world class luxury, irreplaceable beachside location, priceless lifestyle, exceptional lifestyle and much-coveted waterfront lifestyle.

Just as locusts land, they will depart when there is nothing left, and move onto the next green patch.

Anonymous said...

I like Gavin King. He is an honest writer, and will give and argue his real opinion. I welcome his appointment as Chief of Staff and trust him to try and give news and opinion a balanced go in the Cairns Post.

Gavin has been here just over a year, and for most of that time has been a business editor, so his piece on the “development dilemma” in Cairns reflects a large part of that business knowledge and perspective. I think Gavin got it wrong. It’s not “development yes or no?” But “appropriate development – regulating the pirates” (in my opinion). I’d like to hear Gavin’s thinking about why design and development in Cairns is sooooh 20th century – boring, inefficient, cheap. Where’s the thinking and imagination?

I met Gavin well before he came to Cairns. I met him in December 2005 in Alice Springs when he worked for the Centralian Advocate and covered the Citizens Inspection of Pine Gap. Gavin behaved impeccably in trying to fairly report on the action and associated issues. He kept all his undertakings, but was legally contrained from reporting some issues by News Corp lawyers. (Fairfax lawyers did the same).

In February 2007 Gavin was instrumental in breaking the news that ASIO was involved in my arrest at Pine Gap, and that the AFP was disclosing classified material in an incompetent manner. Gavin and the Cairns Post had to negotiate some tricky legal issues to publish the story. Shortly afterwards the Australian Government Solicitors, acting for the Director General of ASIO, settled with us regarding a secret Supreme Court action they had launched against us in September 2006.

So all this personal criticism of Gavin strikes me as irrelevant piffle. There’s plenty of opportunity in Cairns to campaign effectively for sustainable community and social justice. Don’t blame Gavin for being open in his thinking.

Anonymous said...

Re Bryan Law's comments
There is nothing open about his comments in Saturday's Cairns Post. Blind Freddy can see that he was told to write a pro-development story and keep 'em coming.....
Are you blind or stupid like Gavin?

Anonymous said...

Interesting to read all opinions
about Gavin King,When he first started writing articles for the Cairns Post I read a couple a couple of them,my first impressions
were where did this donkey come from all of a sudden,then after
studying them it dawned on me he is a small town hick trying to make a name for himself,by making loud noises,he is however a small boy in mens trousers.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, Gavin has no or little original thought.
It is also a problem only having one newspaper in town that is supposed to be reporting news, but at the same time, makes millions of dollars yearly from paid advertising from the likes of Hedley, GlenCorp, Thackral (Argentea), C & B, CEC and so on.

Are they going to bite the hand that feeds them? Not on your nelly, they are NOT!

Anonymous said...

Gavin, you've been here a year and here you are throwing your weight around telling us locals what is good for us. If you don't like the overwhelming opinion of long-term locals who are sick to death of the ignorance of the mayor and the developers that are in his pocket destroying everything we cherish from growing up here, then guess what, you can piss off! How would you feel if you gave me a lift in your car one day and I said,
'Gee Gav, I don't like the upholstery in your car, I'm gonna do a turd on every seat, because thats the way I like it'.

'But Captain, this is my car, I've had it for years'.

'Too bad mate, I'm in it now, so its gonna have to change to the way I like, and I like turds to cover my upholstery'.

'No way Captain, you can't do that'.

'I can and will, and if you don't like it, then why don't you bugger off'

Sound familiar Gav? If I didn't know any better I would be thinking maybe you've received a brown paper bag from a cetrain political faction and it is these people who you will be promoting leading up to the election.

Anonymous said...

Gavin King is a low life, self serving idiot. He's just a puppet with no real thoughts of his own. When Gary Schofield of Cairns City Council calls Gav ( To vomit the next installment of deceit from the chamber of commerce & Advance Cairns}he gets excited like a good dog who knows who's boss. He jumps up and down, scratching everyone, slobbering everywhere with his tongue hanging out, racing around doing tricks, chasing this own tail ( Often stopping dead as if possessed to bit his flees & of-course very worrying to his owners can spend the whole day just licking and enjoying his own arsehole } His interstate owners are a little embarrassed by his antics, But hay, he does what most other dogs wouldn't do. Gav is just the right guy for the Cairns Post, He'll be working for Cairns City Council next. Gav's attitudes only work in an environment of fear and loathing and racism, the projected community via racist rags like the Cairns post and the Alice Springs Advocate
The only thing you can hope for is that Gav does have thoughts that aren't so brutal and right wing
Blind to facts of real life, Gav is part of the problem....and he loves it

KitchenSlut said...

Gavin King, i understand, has recently been promoted to Chief of Staff at the Post but would appreciate any info on on recent moves there??

In context the problem with Gavin and the quality of his work and compromised opinion was raised a few months ago by me in a different role.

But then the federal election attack dogs were braying on Cairnsblog and no bugger gave a shit because Gav was on their side.

Hmmm ..... how curious ......