Mr Ed never was a nar­cis­sist

The Gympie Times - - OPINION -

Hors­ing around

DONALD Trump re­cently de­scribed him­self as a “sta­ble ge­nius” in an ad­dress to the na­tion. His se­nior ad­vis­ers were in at­ten­dance.

Mitch McCon­nell’s re­ac­tion sug­gested to me, you could safely bet the national debt, he wasn’t its co-au­thor.

Donald wasn’t Amer­ica’s first sta­ble ge­nius. He was at least pre­ceded by Mr Ed, the fa­mous talk­ing horse, a TV se­ries years ago, whose au­di­ence ex­tended well be­yond the US.

Wil­bur, Mr Ed’s screen part­ner, would lean on Mr Ed’s sta­ble door and en­gage him in a bit of phi­los­o­phy, of­ten in­verse, self-dep­re­cat­ing and hu­mor­ous.

Para­dox­i­cally, Mr Ed was never a horse’s rear end. I can’t re­mem­ber pres­i­den­tial staffers re­fer­ring to him as a “mo­ron” or “id­iot”. Donald Trump, on the other hand, can be a bit of a farce. Who else takes a glow­ing self-writ­ten char­ac­ter ref­er­ence to work, reads it to the en­tire world, then tells an au­di­ence “you are so lucky to have me”.

Neigh, Mr Ed wasn’t a nar­cis­sist. I can’t re­call him be­ing vain or ob­tuse, nor was he com­man­der in chief.

Should North Korea and the US lead­ers meet for di­a­logue, here’s hop­ing there’s a child psy­chol­o­gist in the room.

Mr Ed proved that many of us en­joy a sense of the ab­surd. How­ever, with the in­creas­ing prospect that com­men­tary post-Trump’s pres­i­dency may be­long ex­clu­sively to aliens and oth­ers not of this world, it might just be tak­ing things a lit­tle too far. — Lau­rie Cronin, Gympie

Pets in scorcher

IT’S hot and get­ting hot­ter. While we strug­gle to cope, let’s not for­get our com­pan­ion an­i­mals.

The last two years (2016-17) have set records as the hottest ever.

It’s not even the mid­dle of sum­mer yet, but we are al­ready see­ing re­ports of high­ways melt­ing and peo­ple are be­ing warned that the ex­treme heat can be a killer.

PETA re­ceives re­ports ev­ery year about an­i­mals who suf­fer hor­ri­fy­ing deaths dur­ing the sum­mer months.

Never leave an an­i­mal in a parked car in warm weather, even for short pe­ri­ods with the win­dows slightly open.

On even a mild 30-de­gree day, the temperature in­side a car parked in the sun can reach 54 de­grees in min­utes.

Dogs need their ex­er­cise, but in sum­mer, it’s best to do that early in the morn­ing.

Think about the sur­faces they will be tread­ing and try to walk on grass or in the shade. You have shoes; they do not.

Make sure they don’t pick up any dropped food – it spoils fast in hot weather. Avoid ex­er­cis­ing in the heat of the day – some dogs will keep run­ning un­til they go into heat­stroke.

Dogs can also get sun­burnt, par­tic­u­larly if they are pale in colour or like to bake their tum­mies.

You can use sun­screen, but not the ones with zinc or sal­i­cy­lates as they can be toxic if licked.

In­door an­i­mals can also over­heat if they like to sleep near a win­dow; make sure there is some­where shady they can move to.

And al­ways make sure there is plenty of cool, fresh wa­ter for them to drink. — Des­mond Bel­lamy, PETA Aus­tralia

Coast comes first

THE Busi­ness Coun­cil Think Tanks were, for the most part, a con­struc­tive and wel­come ini­tia­tive which sought to fos­ter greater un­der­stand­ing of col­lec­tive is­sues, views and so­lu­tions for the over­all good of the re­gion (SCD Opin­ion 09 Jan–” Heads be­fore Hearts on Sek­isui de­vel­op­ment”).

De­spite en­cour­ag­ing dis­cus­sions, a clear “fail­ing” be­came ev­i­dent when some de­vel­op­ers such as Sek­isui

House and Stockland were un­will­ing to move be­yond an en­trenched at­ti­tude when their par­tic­u­lar de­vel­op­ment as­pi­ra­tions were jus­ti­fi­ably chal­lenged.

With Sek­isui, it’s their pro­posal to mas­sively over-de­velop the sen­si­tive beach­side site at Ya­roomba with 1000-plus res­i­den­tial dwellings and seven-storey build­ings, grossly con­flict­ing with sound plan­ning pro­vi­sions.

Stockland con­tinue to push their alarm­ing Twin Waters West de­vel­op­ment on the Ma­roochy River flood­plain and its un­ac­cept­able Halls Creek de­vel­op­ment – a pro­posed “sis­ter me­trop­o­lis” to its fast-tracked Caloun­dra South de­vel­op­ment.

The Sun­shine Coast is for­tu­nate to have an abun­dance of in­formed “heads” when it comes to call­ing out in­ap­pro­pri­ate de­vel­op­ments which threaten our val­ued en­vi­ron­ment, char­ac­ter and live­abil­ity.

Thank­fully, this re­gion has an abun­dance of “heart”, mak­ing it the spe­cial place it is and must be into the fu­ture. — Narelle McCarthy, Sun­shine Coast En­vi­ron­ment Coun­cil

PHOTO: MANUEL BALCE CENETA

STA­BLE GE­NIUS?: Let­ter writer says there can be too much ab­sur­dity when it comes to Pres­i­dent Donald Trump.

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