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Torch relay farce bill gets slapped on the ACT

By johnboy - 6 August 2009 24

I think it’s fair to say the Beijing Olympics torch relay was not an event most in the ACT remember fondly.

The Liberals’ Brendan Smyth is now pointing out that we’re paying for 3/4’s of the deal rather than the promised half.

    In an embarrassing and costly rebuke from Jon Stanhope’s Federal Labor colleagues, the ACT community has been left with three quarters of the over $2 million bill for the Olympic torch relay, Shadow Treasurer, Brendan Smyth, said today.

    “This is another embarrassing snub for the Chief Minister from his Federal Labor counterparts, after they reneged on a deal to pay half of the cost for the Beijing Olympic Torch relay,” Mr Smyth said.

    “Unfortunately for ACT taxpayers, Mr Stanhope’s inability to negotiate a suitable deal has left our already struggling economy further under pressure.

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24 Responses to
Torch relay farce bill gets slapped on the ACT
NickD 9:45 pm 06 Aug 09

Can we pass the bill onto the Chinese Embassy? If media reports are to be believed they organised the demonstrations and I presume employed the creepy Chinese guys I saw videoing the students to make sure that they behaved appropriately (including, interestingly enough, making sure that all discussions/confrontations with pro-Tibet protesters were caught on film). I also have some interesting photos of the event.

Granny 7:47 pm 06 Aug 09

Torch relay … grrrr … don’t talk to me about the torch relay. It was the first successful invasion of Australian soil by a foreign power in two hundred years. And it was terrifying.

monomania 7:12 pm 06 Aug 09

“Mini potentiates” love the grandiose. How did Stanhope ever think that this benefited the lives of his constituents. The extra cost should come out of his pension.

NoAddedMSG 6:13 pm 06 Aug 09

Well I enjoyed it – the crowd was pretty interesting and even fun in parts, before it all got bit heated. (I have some interesting pics of the heated parts too.) As a nice bonus, one of my two chinese housemates mistook my enthusiasm for the relay experience as supporting his political ideals and finally let loose with what he really thought should be happen to Taiwan (military attack) and showed me the letters from the chinese association sent out to drum up nationalist pride and attendance at the relay – which were a totally fascinating insight into a particular aspect of chinese society.

Joshua 5:07 pm 06 Aug 09

Holden Caulfield said :

Thugs spend money too.

Yeah but how much extra do you have to spend on police because there are thugs present? I doubt their spending exceeds the cost of policing them.

Dante 5:01 pm 06 Aug 09

Would they spend $1.5m over the course of a day? I don’t think the figures would reflect that, which would surely suggest this was a dud investment.

Let’s face facts, Canberra got screwed by this.

Holden Caulfield 4:44 pm 06 Aug 09

Dante said :

And what exactly did the torch relay bring to Canberra, except for busloads of nationalist Chinese who beat up and spat on my friend and his brother as they unfurled a Free Tibet banner?

I doubt it brought $1.5m into the local economy.

Thugs spend money too.

Wraith 4:32 pm 06 Aug 09

Thumper said :

Is anyone really suprised about this news?

Exactly

Whatsup 4:02 pm 06 Aug 09

I thought paying half was too much. What a waste of money.

H1NG0 3:48 pm 06 Aug 09

So that thing that made my trip to work an hour longer than normal is costing me money? Fantastic!

Dante 2:54 pm 06 Aug 09

And what exactly did the torch relay bring to Canberra, except for busloads of nationalist Chinese who beat up and spat on my friend and his brother as they unfurled a Free Tibet banner?

I doubt it brought $1.5m into the local economy.

Overheard 2:50 pm 06 Aug 09

I can’t believe I was seriously considering joining the community choir they put together to sing on the day, before about three nanoseconds had elapsed and I gave myself a very stiff uppercut.

Thumper 2:38 pm 06 Aug 09

Is anyone really suprised about this news?

caf 2:35 pm 06 Aug 09

Is it just me or is there a pretty strong link between the words “Olympic” and “farce”?

MrMagoo 2:29 pm 06 Aug 09

Coming from the man who’s government at the time painted the grass at Bruce Stadium to appease SOCOG. Brendan I’d shut up now if I were you mate.

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