THE voices adding to the call for a culling of the crocodiles are growing.
It was interesting last week to see Cook MP Billy Gordon add his support to the Katter’s Australia Party stance on the crocodile issue, which is for a “controlled” cull, whatever that means.
Billy was asked about his change of mind on the matter on radio and he said he had been particularly swayed by what parents had to say at the Surf Life Saving club’s nippers sign on day in Port Douglas. He said they were rather worried about the croc issue on Four Mile Beach and this had finally persuaded him to adopt something more like the KAP’s plan.
(I went down to the surf club to talk to parents, on sign-on day, and there were quite a few there late in the morning still signing up kids, which in itself was a fairly confident sign. No one expressed to me any overriding concern about crocs – though of course I didn’t see the ones who stayed away because of that.).
Then Rob Pyne, the maverick MP in Cairns, did something quite Pyne-ish, in my view. He invented croc trading. He said he would join the other cross bench MPs in calling for a cull so long as they helped with a list of things he wanted to obtain for his own electorate.
So far most of those urging tougher measures on croc numbers had done so out of a view for public safety. It is simply the right thing to do in itself, they believe. But Pyne actually linked it up to a wishlist of stuff which had nothing to do with crocs.
The Katters may well be wondering where this could all go. But the more I think about it perhaps the practicalities of such a deal are worth considering.
Perhaps Billy could get us those school crossing guards we’ve been pleading for (potentially saving even more lives) or some state help with the MOSSMAN BOTANIC GARDENS (why does this project have to be only a federal matter?).
Croc trading. Get in now, offer may end soon.