14 February 2023

PODCAST: Here's the Hoot: republic questions, other people's light rail and deep dark secrets in the lake

| Genevieve Jacobs
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Smoke circle over Australian Parliament House

A howitzer gun salute rang out at Parliament House in memory of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

Our latest podcast has landed, and The Hoot has plenty of questions from Ross Solly and Genevieve Jacobs in a huge news week.

Her Majesty’s death has dominated the news cycle but so have inevitable questions about the republic. Is it too soon for Canberrans to even have the conversation?

We turned out in our thousands to farewell the Queen as the howitzer guns rang out at Parliament House, marking her death. But the Territory also had the highest ‘yes’ vote in the country when the last referendum was held in 1999.

So will a new king change the republic conversation, especially for a younger generation? We’re debating whether a more activist monarch will alter those public perceptions that the monarchy doesn’t do much and whether Canberrans are a bit different from everyone else.

On international matters (like the royal family), we’re also talking about the places where light rail works best. And it’s not just the big cities either – Ross says there are plenty of places with smaller populations where light rail is a fixture.

So what’s the difference between there and here? And why can’t Canberrans get on board the light rail concept if it could transform the city’s lifestyle?

Light rail will be heading across the lake soon(ish), but perhaps it’s best not to look too closely at what’s beneath the waters. All sorts of things are lurking down there and have floated down the river since the lake filled half a century ago. Some of them are surprising, and some of them are decidedly unpleasant.

We’re taking a look at some of the deeper, darker secrets of the lake and contemplating what would happen if it was ever empty again.

The Hoot appears every week on Riotact and wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple and Spotify. Have a listen, tell us what you think and rate us.

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If we are going to have another El Nina year with good water flow, perhaps we should just drain it and scrape out the bottom once and for all.

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