NTFL gala games for Devils

Under-19, reserves and senior NTFL finals will begin at York Park about 10.30am, 12.30pm and 3pm, with the Devils playing at 6.30pm.
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South Launceston and Launceston are the most likely to play in the senior qualifying final, but the actual teams won’t be known until after this weekend.

NTFL general manager Ian Wotherspoon said that AFL Tasmania’s initiative was good for the game at all levels.

“While we may have made a little more profit playing at a different venue to the Devils, we recognised that this was a great promotion for elite and grassroots football,” he said.

York Park manager Robert Groenewegen welcomed the announcement, and said the gala day would attract plenty of fans from a wide range of interests.

“In addition to the NTFL during the day, the Devils’ final at 6.30pm is timed so that it doesn’t clash with other sporting finals in the region, and we are looking for that support,” he said.

The Launceston Chamber of Commerce has also thrown its support behind the matches.

Executive officer Jo Archer said that Launceston businesses and fans had shown their support for AFL football, and it was now time to welcome the NTFL – Devils gala day and give Launceston a further economic boost.

She encouraged businesses to bulk- buy tickets in a Launceston City Council and Football Victoria promotion offering a special prize for businesses or organisations that buy 20 or more adult tickets.

Those organisations will go into a draw next Wednesday to win a table of 10 at the corporate function at York Park. Block ticket sales through Launceston Special Events 63233154.

Ticket sales and other corporate sales for the game are available from AFL in Tasmania’s Offices in Launceston (York Park phone 63330602) and Hobart (North Hobart Football Ground phone 62301800). Costs are $12 for adults, $2 for children and $7 for concessions.

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Illawarra drivers cash in on fuel fall

Motorists line up for cheaper petrol in Wollongong yesterday. Picture: ROBERT PEETIllawarra motorists made the most of plummeting petrol prices yesterday, queuing at numerous service stations across the region to top up the tank before the usual Wednesday afternoon rise.Fuel prices in Wollongong hovered around the $1.23 mark yesterday, 30 cents lower than last month’s average price for the region.Motorists are cashing in on an international price slide in which the benchmark for unleaded fuel has dived from $128 a barrel just four weeks ago, to $84 a barrel this week.Marilyn Jones of Balgownie welcomed the price drop but believed fuel companies were keeping a few cents up their sleeves.”I think it could be cheaper,” she said. “When you hear the big profits that the petrol companies are making it doesn’t seem right.” Fueltrac general manager Geoff Trotter said fuel prices depended on a number of factors, particularly competition. “In areas with a large number of independents, consumers will generally receive the full benefit of lower wholesale prices,” he said. “However, in areas where there is not much competition the prices won’t fall as sharply.”While consumers were the big winners in the fuel price dip, Mr Trotter said small servo operators could be significantly disadvantaged.”The smaller independents don’t have the capacity to consolidate losses like the larger chains who can make big profits in their other ventures,” he said.”Also, because of their lower turnover they may have the fuel they purchased at last week’s price but if they put the price down it would mean taking a loss of 4 cents or 5 cents per litre.”Mr Trotter said consumers shouldn’t believe everything they heard about petrol prices, but should take into consideration the price petrol stations were paying suppliers.”People shouldn’t think they can pay 99 cents per litre,” he said. “The wholesale price in Sydney today is $1.24, so if people are selling at 99 cents they are losing 25 cents a litre.”
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Spare us the job interview

People often ask how I manage to work from home with young children in tow. I show them a few bottle-shop receipts and let them figure out the rest.Working from home is not the future – it’s a fallback. Telecommuting is just a fancy way of saying: “I still need to earn money but sometimes I’m going to hide out at the public pool with my phone on silent and there’s not a damn thing any of you can do about it”.I know I’ll never make my fortune in my bedroom with a desk in the corner and a small TV ready to fire up at 2pm for Days of Our Lives. But I have bought one important guarantee: no more job interviews.Oh, how I hate them. Not just because the modern recruitment industry has hijacked the job interview process and turned what should be a very straight-forward skills appraisal into a Spanish Inquisition hosted by peroxided 20-something model hopefuls with the life experience of a gnat.No, it’s because … actually, that’s pretty much it.My mother got me thinking about job interviews again this week because she had to attend one and I offered to help her prepare. (What does it say about life that my mother is trying to get new work at the age her own mother died of exhaustion?).”Just be yourself, Mum,” I said. “Don’t apologise for your age – it’s an asset. Don’t worry about being nervous – it’s expected. Just ad-lib, be chatty, have fun!””But it’s a government job,” she said.”Oh,” I quipped. “Forget it.”Mum showed me the key selection criteria – a long, slow walk through the Jargon Abyss.Thirty-six questions cut-and-pasted from 83 documents seconded from 13 other departments and photocopied by four bored-to-tears administration officers. Death by a thousand paper cuts.I doubt anyone actually reads the answers to key selection criteria. They exist merely to demonstrate that a prospective candidate can indeed spend many, many hours looking very productive and achieving nothing of consequence.The interview itself is far worse, promising a dozen or more vacuous questions with no clear-cut answers, the only goal apparently being to screen out those hopefuls with too much spunk, creativity or ambition.At least these questions have become predictable, Google-able and easier to prepare for: What are your strengths and weaknesses? Where do you see yourself in five years? How do you manage your time? How do you incorporate Occupational Workplace Health & Safety regulations into your daily routine?Yet still we are left with a public service whose most auspicious achievement is simply getting the job in the first place. Really, once you’re in, you’re in. It’s easier to be fired out of a cannon than it is from a government job.If this nation really cared about having a dynamic, proactive public service in which creativity was rewarded and commonsense could circumvent ludicrous and unnecessary procedures, we’d do away with key selection criteria and panel interviews and “quality assured” recruitment companies.Instead, we’d simply fly all the candidates to a remote location with nothing more than 28 government forms, a stapler and an ergonomic chair and see who finds their way home [email protected]南京夜网www.carrie-on-columns.blogspot南京夜网 Carrie Cox is a journalist, author and mother who one day hopes to finish a cup of coffee while it’s still hot.
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Victory offers hope for a new America

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin but by the content of their character.”- Martin Luther King jnrForty-five years ago when the great civil rights leader cried these words from the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, racial equality was the great dream.Yesterday’s election of Barack Obama as President of the United States of America cannot possibly resolve the differences that remain across what is essentially many Americas. But we have witnessed a watershed moment in history where voters have embraced change and raised the possibility of a new America.Senator Obama’s stirring, flawless acceptance speech was reminiscent of words spoken by Martin Luther King jnr – a call to all peoples to unite. Just as Mr King was a catalyst for creating a fairer and better America, many now look towards another great orator in Sen Obama to restore confidence and the United States’ place in the world.The 47-year-old Democrat faces more than the proverbial challenge. He acknowledged yesterday the immensity of climate change, war and a financial crisis.Americans and America have been hurt by the US involvement in Iraq. Domestically, the US health system is close to crisis and, as has been the subject of so much attention during the campaign, the disparity between the aspirations of Wall Street and Main Street must be reconciled.The impact of an Obama administration on Australia remains to be seen. The US may want an even greater commitment from us in Afghanistan and will likely prop us up in our so-called regional sheriff duties.Critics will say that it is action not rhetoric that will determine if Sen Obama serves history by being more than just the first black president. That said, it’s not a bad start. And his vision, so beautifully articulated, may well have the power to propel the US down new paths.
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Stories of our fallen diggers

Private Robert Patmore.
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Woonona’s Robert Patmore was one of hundreds of diggers from the Illawarra who went to serve our nation and never returned.Private Patmore enlisted in late 1915 and headed to Egypt, poised for fighting in the fields of Europe at the outset of World War I.Sick and invalided to Australia, he died en route on July 28, 1916 and was buried at sea – another young man lost.But he will never be forgotten. His will be among hundreds of new names on the Mercury’s Illawarra Roll of Honour, to be published on Remembrance Day on Tuesday.The Mercury first published the roll of honour on Anzac Day, recording the names of 554 men with a local connection who died in the two world wars and in Vietnam. On Tuesday we will recognise some 900 men from the region.The roll took months of painstaking research and drew on the official records of the Office of Commonwealth War Graves in Canberra, the National Archives of Australia, the Australian War Memorial and local history buffs.Far from a definitive list, the roll is, however, believed to be the most comprehensive yet produced for a single region.After Anzac Day, readers sent us more information about their relatives, who will be added to the roll.Mercury editor Stuart Howie said each name represented a story and a life.“Many of these men were barely adults – and the roll spells out the terrible cost of war and the loss to our community,” he said.Next week’s Remembrance Day marks the 90th anniversary of the World War I armistice. At 11am on November 11, 1918 the guns of the Western Front finally fell silent.On the first anniversary of the armistice in 1919, two minutes’ silence was instituted as part of the commemorations in London. Silent reflection has become a tradition every November 11 since.The Mercury’s souvenir liftout on Tuesday, titled Peace and Remembrance, will include the roll of honour, plus a special insight into how the Armistice was celebrated in the Illawarra.

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