Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Micro-control of behaviour tightens its noose around this dead town

The micro-control of Sydneysiders' behaviour has cranked up two more notches with a new set of draconian anti-pub rules and, less seriously but symptomatic, a ban on personal screensavers for the already highly regimented public servants at Town Hall.

The new 'safety rating' for pubs decrees that eight assaults on the premises in a year will result in sanctions and 19 will result in the 2am lockout package being applied. Already the new regime means the 48 pubs currently under the 2am rules will grow to 100. Apparently The Mean Fiddler in Rouse Hill has lost its 'worst pub' title to Penrith Panthers which had 48 reported assaults in the past year.

Neither venue is in a concentrated entertainment precinct so it's another dent in the saturation-point theory that Clover Moore and local NIMBYs prosecute. As I keep saying, the problem is the concentration of bogans, not venues. That's why the violence rate around here is in fact 20% below the state average according Clover Moore's own figures. But logic never gets in the way of a good moral panic.

Meanwhile at Town Hall Clover Moore is backing senior management who removed, en masse, staff screensavers -- typically the spouse, the kids, the dog or a nice view -- and replaced them with the fictional 'City of Villages' logo. Apparently it's to stop 'inappropriate' screensavers, as if that could not have been dealt with on a case basis. The reactions of staff are typically not recorded. The Diary quotes Cr Shayne Mallard objecting. Again, the so-called lefties make the Liberal guy look good.

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