Friday, 6 February 2015

Change the time zone!

Change the time zone! Should I say that again? Change the time zone!
It is an issue which has been debated in this state many times over the years. It has been raised no less than eight times in the past thirty or so.
Business, or so we are told, is agitating for the state to "fall in line with the eastern states" because the half hour between us and them is expensive, confusing and awkward.
What utter rubbish! Business is, or should be, done on a global basis. Business should be able to work in multiple time zones.
I work in multiple time zones. I frequently need to calculate what time it is anywhere from Amsterdam to Ulan Bator, from London to Santiago or from Doha to Washington - and everywhere in between. Yes, I often need to do something outside "normal office-hours". I don't have "normal office-hours". It is part of my job.
If an ordinary business with multiple employees cannot cope with a half hour time difference then there is something very wrong. Do businesses in the central time zone of Downunder only do business with those in the eastern time zone? Of course they don't.
The time zone is actually already out of step with the rest of the world. The sensible thing would be to go back half an hour and place it in the same zone as a country like Japan. It would then be closer to the entire Asian area - the area we are told the country is and should be concentrating on for business purposes.
But of course everyone knows why the issue has come up again now. It's because the government needs us to concentrate on anything but the economy, anything but the fact the state is bankrupt and that they have wasted millions of dollars. Why, for example, did they spend $47m doing up the emergency department in a hospital only to then say they are going to close it? And, they mean close it. That part of the hospital will simply sit empty - as will the other emergency departments they want to close.
Middle Cat has a friend who is an anaesthetist. When her friend's contract at a public hospital came to an end she reapplied. She didn't get the position. Nobody did. The position no longer exists. Surgery lists have been cancelled because there is no anaesthetist available.
I have a friend who needs hip replacements. It has reached the point where she can walk no more than a few metres. She has been waiting almost six years for surgery although, at barely fifty, she has been assessed as "urgent".
But never mind the government is still spending millions on entertaining the population. We've just had the Tour Down Under and now there is the Clipsal car race. Soon it will be time for the Festival of Arts (now an annual rather than a biennial event). 
Perhaps I can eat cake at Writers' Week?

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