Charles gets a fancy ride but no commuters

I was fortunate enough to meet Jim Frecklington (“Rolled Gold: Coronation Coach made in Manly,” April 30) at his workshop a few months ago as he was preparing the coach for the coronation. Aside from his exquisite craftsmanship, he also has a beautiful engraving handwriting as can be seen on the card he gave me. I wish him all the best in his recovery. He’s a national treasure.
Vicky Marquis, Glebe

It is remarkable that we can build the most exquisite royal carriages in this country, but we cannot make our own trams or trains.
Matt Kaarma, North Nowra

motivate young

There is only one justification for economic growth in Australia (‘Why Australians must change their thinking on growth the economy’, 30 April) and that is to lift more than 10 per cent of Australians out of poverty. Redistribution of wealth from the affluent to the less affluent with a stable economy is an alternative, but with either of the two major political parties in power, this is extremely unlikely. Wealthy Australians, particularly those over 40, are set in their ways, addicted to environmentally destructive lifestyles and have little appetite for change or for giving away their benefits. However, Greta Thunberg and other activists have shown that young people can be motivated to think about the future and try to initiate change. Educating youth about the worsening problems is the best hope for a more sustainable future. Your future is at stake.
Geoff Harding, Chatswood

The prospect of an economic collapse contemplated by Ian Lowe cannot be ignored like the threat to our climate for so many years. The transition to the inevitable non-growing steady-state economy needs planning. This must not happen through our insistence on normal business operations.
Phil Jones, Secretary/Treasurer of the Center for the Advancement of the Steady State Economy, Elanora Heights

Core Principles of Immigration
Congratulations to Parnell Palme McGuinness (“Visa Reset Approval Stamp”. 30 April) for identifying several core principles that should underpin our immigration policies. However, she neglected the most important principle of all; that the structure, function and scope of our ecosystems are preserved as they constitute our life support systems. And yet the best science shows that they are declining sharply and that population growth and consumption rates are the underlying factors. A new principle on immigration should be that the number of immigrants should not exceed the carrying capacity of the nation, thereby threatening both nature and future human generations. Anyone who takes sustainability for granted and believes that economic and population growth is a panacea should read Ian Lowe’s article, which will be published today. Undifferentiated growth is unsustainable and has serious downsides. who knew
Alan Jones, Narraweena

Home ownership is not a pot of gold

Green Party spokesman on housing, Max Chandler-Mather, is demanding that Labor “immediately” pass its forthcoming bill to freeze housing rents and interest rates (“Greens tell PM to freeze rents and rate hikes,” April 30). He should bear in mind that most Australian residential properties are owned by retail investors and are likely to return less than 2-3 per cent net before tax, while costs for repairs, insurance, etc. are through the roof. Hardly a night ticket to riches. The more likely consequence of this green feat will be further alienating housing investment and exacerbating the problem they seek to solve. – Russell Murphy, Bayview

General practitioners are obvious alternative

The problem lies in the diagnosis (“Pharmacy Study Sticks to Script,” April 30). Uncomplicated urinary tract infection (UTI)? How can this be distinguished from chlamydia, herpes, vaginitis, diabetes and vaginal cancer? And what about complex UTIs? A one-time counter-counseling will not provide early sepsis, resistant and recurrent infections, nor advice on sexually transmitted diseases, sexual health and prevention. Only a family doctor who can take a detailed medical history of a familiar patient, examine, examine, differentiate diagnoses and organize a treatment plan including follow-up. You wouldn’t expect a hat restaurant driving through, and you won’t get one. There is a need to relieve pressure in primary care and practicing nurses who have clinical training, are able to examine and examine are the obvious alternative, not pharmacists. – Rowan Godwin, Rozelle

Justin Scaccy

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