12 September 2023

PODCAST: The Hoot (with a brand new owl) on drug decriminalisation and Qantas hi-jinks

| Genevieve Jacobs
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The flying kangaroo or the lying kangaroo? Qantas aircraft at Sydney Airport. Photo: Qantas.

This week’s episode of the Hoot lands with a brand new owl in the nest. Welcome to David Murtagh, Region’s sub-editor, a former speechwriter and a political tragic of some note.

He’s renowned for arguing about politics incessantly in the office, so we’ve given him a shot at proving that somebody (anybody, really) agrees with him. The group editor mostly doesn’t, so this is also an excellent chance to air Region‘s dirty laundry with the listeners.

The Hoot is heading in a slightly different direction, discussing matters on a national stage.

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READ ALSO What will the ACT’s new drug decriminalisation laws actually mean?

This week we start with drug decriminalisation, about to take effect in the ACT a year after the legislation was first passed. The changes are significant: users can possess up to 1.5 grams of most illicit drugs if the substances are intended for personal use.

The intention is to take people who need medical assistance out of the justice system, but was there enough consultation? What about the effect on other parts of the community?

READ ALSO Departing Qantas CEO Alan Joyce endures parting shots from Senate committee

And while the rest of the country is engaged in a raging hate-fest directed at Qantas, Mr Murtagh is not so sure. Does the problem all come down to short-term incentives v long-term incentives in corporate Australia?

Because if it’s the former, Alan Joyce has done very well indeed out of the arrangement. Listen to the podcast and find out just where the recently retired CEO ranks among the airlines top shareholders, and why this all matters to the local taxpayer.

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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