85 episodes

The Hoot brings you news, views and big ideas from Canberra's Region Media. Join Claire Fenwicke and David Murtagh for insights, expertise and a bit of fun each week.

The Hoot Genevieve Jacobs & David Murtagh

    • News
    • 4.2 • 15 Ratings

The Hoot brings you news, views and big ideas from Canberra's Region Media. Join Claire Fenwicke and David Murtagh for insights, expertise and a bit of fun each week.

    The Hoot: Labor's pokies plan a high stakes gamble

    The Hoot: Labor's pokies plan a high stakes gamble

    This week on The Hoot, the owls take a hard look at the ACT Government's 20-year plan to cull the number of poker machines in local clubs.

    Under the initiative, the number of poker machines in the ACT will be slashed to just 1000 by 2045 if Labor is re-elected in October (there are currently 3790). The primary goal is to reduce gambling harm. ACT Labor says it will legislate to force clubs to give up 500 machines every four years until the target is met.

    But there's more.

    The sweetener will be a framework for clubs to develop sustainable alternative revenue streams, including practical ways for clubs to unlock their land so it can be used for housing, build-to-rent projects and aged care.

    But it's not all smooth sailing - in fact, the clubs are positively ropable.

    And where would we be without light rail? On a bus probably, but aside from that ...

    We're headed to the polls in October and it seems like light rail will again be a primary focus. Oh, goody.

    The Libs are in a spot of bother with their plan to put us on the buses, but the government has some problems, too. Some of the turns to Woden are a bit sharp for the not-too-nimble trams, so we'll be getting a tunnel. Of sorts. And they don't come cheap ... not that we know what the cost will be, but apart from that ... 

    Finally, we discuss this park from Andrew Barr. Yes, it's a storm in a teacup, but isn't everything these days?

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    Hoot, hoot!
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    • 18 min
    The Hoot: VAD's passed, but what happens next?

    The Hoot: VAD's passed, but what happens next?

    Good news! Claire Fenwicke is back, meaning Murtagh's evil reign has come to an end.

    And just in the nick of time.

    This week, the owl's talk about where to next for voluntary assisted dying now that it's been passed, which inevitably brings us to slippery slopes. And all was going well until Murtagh decided to mention Zed (you remember him?)

    Murtagh's argument is basically that if you think a law is immoral, as Zed and Kevin Andrews did when VAD was first proposed in the territories, then it's your duty to stop it. That's what you'd do, right? And don't we want politicians to do what they think is right, not expedient or in their self-interest?

    Maybe, but Murtagh knows he is - again - in the minority and won't be winning many (or any) friends in the Territory, although Edmund Burke might be smiling.

    Then attention is turned to the gold-plated speechwriter in the office of Bill Shorten. Once you get past the astronomical salary ($310,000 a year, thank you very much), does it give clues to the problem the government will have in its efforts to cut contractor costs? If it has to pay more than double APS rates to get a pen for hire, how are they going to get IT specialists?

    And finally ... we go to Kambah! The biggest suburb in the southern hemisphere (if you don't count the bigger ones).
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    • 18 min
    The Hoot: Is CSIRO's nuclear reaction a fusion of fact and fiction, or another sign of the times?

    The Hoot: Is CSIRO's nuclear reaction a fusion of fact and fiction, or another sign of the times?

    You've heard about CSIRO's analysis of nuclear power, right?

    And you remember when the ACT Government told you how great the next stages of light rail would be (although not the cost ... which is odd ... but we digress).

    And you saw the Treasurer deliver the Budget (gee, you really are a sucker for punishment, aren't you!)

    How reliable are the figures and their 'analysis'?

    Do you really trust them?

    Is CSIRO right when it says a nuclear reactor would cost $8.6 billion? No. They're wrong. Nothing against CSIRO, but predictions are hard - especially about the future! (It'll be waaaaay more than 8.6 - you can take that to the bank.)

    Remember, Snowy 2.0 was meant to cost $2 billion and could now be edging to (if not over) $13 billion. And it's about four years late.

    The truth is, they have no idea. No one does. Yet we place all our faith and make decisions based on what they swear is their reliable crystal ball.

    This week on The Hoot, Murtagh takes the reins and tackles the 'experts'. What could possibly go wrong?
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    • 16 min
    The Hoot on knife crime, supermarkets checkouts and THAT painting

    The Hoot on knife crime, supermarkets checkouts and THAT painting

    This week on The Hoot, David Murtagh and Claire Fenwicke delve deep into Jack's Law, a move by the Canberra Liberals to combat knife crime. Hard to disagree with, right?

    But there's a problem.

    The law would allow police to use metal detection wands on people "without reasonable suspicion in designated areas". And that's where it gets complicated because it could result in profiling some marginal groups and increase police interactions. Where do you land on this issue?

    When it comes to supermarkets, of course, we're all profiled as thieves, if the new checkout regimen is anything to go by. But shouldn't there be a payoff for the customer if we're going to be put through the humiliation of suspicion? We have an idea.

    And finally, THAT painting. Everyone's got an opinion and it seems Gina doesn't have a lot of fans. Except Murtagh. Because someone should stick up for the (multi)billionaires. And in a no-way-related matter, sponsorship slots for The Hoot are available ...
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    • 20 min
    The Hoot: Can a pea-and-thimble trick really slay the inflation dragon?

    The Hoot: Can a pea-and-thimble trick really slay the inflation dragon?

    How about that Budget?! Thrilling, eh!

    Yep, we're in the 'meh' boat, too. Talk about a nothing burger.

    There's not much to get excited about - until you start looking under the bonnet at the tricks. Like, if inflation is too much money and not enough stuff, how can throwing $300 at households by 'lowering' bills be anti-inflationary when it's really putting more money into people's pockets? Surely Murtagh isn't the only one who smells a rat? Is the ABS really going to fall for this carnival trick? And the RBA?

    That and more in this week's Hoot, with David Murtagh and Claire Fenwicke.
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    • 19 min
    The Hoot: the ACT's ticking debt bomb, the problems with public housing and who said we want 'Big Canberra'?

    The Hoot: the ACT's ticking debt bomb, the problems with public housing and who said we want 'Big Canberra'?

    This week on The Hoot, David Murtagh is joined by Assembly reporter Claire Fenwicke to discuss the growing debt in the ACT (are we that far off being Victoria?), the myriad failures in public housing, and one of the reasons the Barr Government is so keen on light rail is that we are projected to have a population of 780,000 in 2060. A question for you: is this what we want in Canberra? And if so, can we still be the 'Bush Capital'?
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    • 22 min

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5
15 Ratings

15 Ratings

andrewwhiteau ,

Canberra wrapped

Comprehensive yet entertaining wrap up of all the important things happening in the region. I never miss an episode. Great to hear Genevieve Jacobs doing what she does best again.

LozKath ,

Loving the podcast!

Great to hear David back on the air.

Ben_Singapore ,

Closed minded

This was my first listen to the podcast. I was fairly shocked by how close minded the hosts seemed to be, given how progressive the Canberra community is. My take from what I heard was two boomers complaining about young people having any power politically, greens are bad, liberals are good but they won’t get a fair run at the next ACT election, it was all rather predictable. It would be good to get a diversity of opinion on this podcast rather than the hosts just confirming each other’s bias.

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