Special Commission tries to crash through

ENOUGH is enough. The world has gone mad.

At a time when the industry should be celebrating the wonderful achievements of its top racers the Special Commission in NSW, packed full of high priced lawyers, has now blundered down a road which will lead nowhere. Nowhere sensible, that is.

Its latest media release – actually an issues paper on overbreeding – calls for comments and suggestions about what constitutes overbreeding and how it should be reduced. Unfortunately, the document is riddled with improper and inaccurate assumptions. Here are some samples.

1. The term “overbreeding” is not defined and has appeared out of nowhere in several inquiries, all without proper research and analysis. So far, it is no more than an assumption, a media catch-phrase with political overtones. There is also a big difference between bad breeding (e.g. from poor stock) and overbreeding (whatever that is).

2. The Special Commission has cherry-picked advice from Working Dogs Australia and Greyhounds Australasia when both have been using faulty or incomplete numbers to support a case.

3. The WDA report, which otherwise contains much helpful comment, assessed breeding issues only within NSW, thereby ignoring the fact that breeding is a national subject. Sires, dams and pups jump back and forth between states as matter of routine. Owners are free to choose any location they wish and regularly swap from one to another. Data from a single state is meaningless.

4. The GA paper has no standing whatever. It was prepared by the bloke in charge of the office, together with limited help from the CEO in South Australia. Neither of these people have the authority to make such decisions or proposals. Indeed, GA’s charter does not allow it to address commercial subjects at all. Final authority on any subject rests solely with each state.

5. The GA paper uses incorrect figures – which it admits itself – to predict an apocalypse unless drastic action is taken. To emphasise the amateurish state of the art at GA, its latest official data is for 2014 where a check of race and starter numbers tells us that an average of 7.99 dogs lined up for each race – an obvious nonsense. Historically, the average has been around 7.3 or so.

6. The GA paper is not only mistake-ridden but calls for a 40% reduction in total activity in order to reduce breeding numbers. A catastrophic change like that would have every chance of killing off the industry completely. How, for example, could you apply that to states with only three tracks in use – i.e. Tasmania and WA? What do they think about the proposal? In total, some 32 tracks across the nation would have to shut down together with all their supporting services. The effect on income and employment would be shattering. And would it solve the problem anyway?

7. GA proposed a single solution to an improperly defined problem. Why were other options not examined and put forward for consideration?

8. The attack on alleged overbreeding is founded on alleged euthanasia numbers. Yet, whatever the numbers, euthanasia is a legal act under both racing rules and the law of the land, providing only that it be done properly. Most certainly, efforts to reduce its impact are worth consideration.

9. The Commission makes much of what it sees as community expectations (without any research backing) yet has continually failed to mention or consider how the community regards euthanasia in other areas. For example, just a few days ago, the ABC’s Landline program ran a segment on working farm dogs where the proprietors of a “rescue” organisation pointed out that some 60,000 farm dogs were destroyed each year – a figure that did not include all the dogs put down at home by farmers. Farm dogs are a highly commercial deal these days, with top ones changing hands for over $10,000.

10. The Special Commission quotes the interim chief at GRNSW, Paul Newson, as claiming that unnecessary euthanasia is “the main threat to the industry”. Yet only a few weeks ago he informed meetings of participants that the industry’s main threat was a shortage of income. What will it be next week?

In total, the Commission’s effort to seek out a range of views is worthwhile in principle. However, the way it has done that is flawed in the extreme. The issues paper displays a poor knowledge of how the industry works; it uses incorrect and unchecked data; it repeats subjective claims or inferences made during witness examinations; it echoes assumptions and un-researched claims made in other inquiries. It is a dog’s breakfast.

It is also leading us down the garden path. It asks for detailed responses to imponderable situations. Neither the Commission nor the respondents can hope to come up with practical answers unless and until decent research and analysis has been conducted. Failing that, everything will be guesswork which, ironically, is pretty much how the industry has been run for decades.

But we are left with some lessons.

First, the absence of national control and professional leadership of the industry is a serious barrier to the achievement of progress and efficiency.

Second, the nature, structure and mode of operation of Greyhounds Australia are hopelessly inadequate for today’s needs.

Third, the industry could benefit hugely from the centralisation of all statistical functions in an independent unit charged with servicing many users, including customers. That would include form and results services, as occurs with the thoroughbred code.

Fourth, political reform is necessary to allow the industry and its parts to innovate and prosper. Government involvement is excessive and unhelpful.

Fifth, the now-outmoded bureaucratic nature of state and club authorities retards the development and progress of the code. They must be replaced by structures which properly assign responsibility, authority and accountability.

Get up to $500 in free bet bonuses upon sign-up with Luxbet.

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
28 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
sparklingspear
sparklingspear
5 years ago

spot on

BobWhitelaw
BobWhitelaw
5 years ago

Bruce Hope you crash through and post your thoughts off to the  commission like we all should  do  i also believe you are spot on

MarionPurnell
MarionPurnell
5 years ago

You don’t even need the intelligence of a goldfish to understand that the greyhound business model relies on killing thousands of young healthy dogs per year and has done for nearly a century.

BobWhitelaw
BobWhitelaw
5 years ago

What a intelligence  comment,  the business model for goldfish breeding finishes  with a flush  down a toilet,  just look at all business models where there is the killing  of young healthy animals  we all should remember  this when we eating yearling steak, lamb, chickens, rabbits ,quail, prawns, fish, dogs, goats, and so on and that has been going on for centuries  you comment  would be judged as hypocritical

Dezzey
Dezzey
5 years ago

Greyhounds are bred for gambling, not for eating. If they could be eaten then at least they would not be wastage, oops I mean wasted.

NarelleTapp
NarelleTapp
5 years ago

Well, These comments show such a lack of knowledge or a strong bias that the writer doesn’t want to open their mind to a balanced outcome. If a Greyhound has a litter of Pups, will that mean a wager is made? No. If a wager is made, does a Greyhound get born? No. The act of a Greyhound having a litter or a wager being made are 2 seperate acts and are are not related. Therefore Greyhounds are not bred for gambling. The Greyhound Business model that you are referring to is not dependant on killing Greyhounds it is mostly… Read more »

Hugh_
Hugh_
5 years ago

BobWhitelaw Some would argue that sacrificing animals for food, where all the animals that are sacrificed are actually eaten, is something they can justify compared to sacrificing many animals to obtain a few that run around in circles for gambling.  Also not all animals are equal in intelligence, a prawn or a goldfish can’t be compared to a lamb.  A bunch of things you’re mentioning as equivilents are not equivilents, the argument is more nuanced than “industries where animals die are the same”.

BobWhitelaw
BobWhitelaw
5 years ago

Hugh  Whether you think my argument is nuanced  or not   is no argument  , when the facts are people are eating dogs in some parts of the world every day and i don’t shy away from that, nor should you . There is no way you can hide the facts  that business  is making big bucks  out of sacrificing animals no matter what species they are and most have a very short life span. i believe your argument that greyhound racing  is more  of a gambling exercise is only one part of the sport activities , we  now gamble… Read more »

Dezzey
Dezzey
5 years ago

Hugh_ Did you read Paul Sheehan’s comment  about the calis that processed meat can cause cancer.? It was a personal piece but food for thought.  “Australia is bipolar when it comes to the treatment of animals. We have one of the world’s most entrenched systems of factory farming, where industrial scale processing of pigs, chickens and cattle would appal most people if they were exposed to the process, co-existing with one of the world’s highest rates of animal companionship. Errol Simper in The Australian grudgingly gave him the Columnist of the week award for the piece on how well he summed up our (most… Read more »

Dezzey
Dezzey
5 years ago

NarelleTapp Hi,  I read last year’s Inquiry transcripts and recommendations, I’ve read this years (emotive) so far Special Inquiry and I’ve learned a lot from Bruce. My comments were in response to another poster who always bundles livestock issues with Greyhound matters. If the end result is that Greyhounds are used primarily for gambling purposes then yes, I’m afraid they are bred as a product for the gambling industry. I doubt racing will cease in NSW but acknowledging that its terrible terrible management (thanks for enlightening Bruce) and the behaviours allowed to become normal proactive will go along way in… Read more »

Hugh_
Hugh_
5 years ago

BobWhitelaw  I don’t have a cat, not sure why you’d assume I did.

My point is that you were making an argument of false equivalence to support an accusation of hypocrisy.

I have to be honest I don’t follow whatever point you’re trying to make about shock jocks an millionaires, you’re posts are very confusing to read.  I don’t say that to be offensive, I’m assuming english is your second language.

MarionPurnell
MarionPurnell
5 years ago

BobWhitelaw Bob, if you want to add a greyhound streak to your peas and potatoes you certainly won’t be judged as a hypocrite.

Hugh_
Hugh_
5 years ago

Dezzey Hugh_ Please don’t mistake my stance.  I’m simply attempting to put some perspective on the value of food vs entertainment/gambling, and suggesting that Bob is using an argument of false equivalence.  I’m not trying to suggest that there aren’t huge ethical issues with regards to the meat industry. As it happens I have read the article you mention, and personally am very selective with what meat and dairy I consume, with welfare being my primary concern.  I’m not ideologically opposed to killing/eating animals as a blanket rule, but I care very much about how animals are treated and the quality… Read more »

sparklingspear
sparklingspear
5 years ago

spot on

BobWhitelaw
BobWhitelaw
5 years ago

Bruce Hope you crash through and post your thoughts off to the  commission like we all should  do  i also believe you are spot on

AaronC_NZ
AaronC_NZ
5 years ago

Ships going down time for the rats to take a bath

MarionPurnell
MarionPurnell
5 years ago

You don’t even need the intelligence of a goldfish to understand that the greyhound business model relies on killing thousands of young healthy dogs per year and has done for nearly a century.  

BobWhitelaw
BobWhitelaw
5 years ago

What a intelligence  comment,  the business model for goldfish breeding finishes  with a flush  down a toilet,  just look at all business models where there is the killing  of young healthy animals  we all should remember  this when we eating yearling steak, lamb, chickens, rabbits ,quail, prawns, fish, dogs, goats, and so on and that has been going on around the world for centuries  you comment  would be judged as hypocritical

AaronC_NZ
AaronC_NZ
5 years ago

BobWhitelaw pointing at someone elses house does not put your own in order.

Mainstream values dictate that food is an essential industry whereas gambling doesn’t meet that criteria. If you would like to campaign for goldfish and goats and so on however, out of legitimate concern for those animals then I would encourage you to do so. I think you’d do well.

Dezzey
Dezzey
5 years ago

Greyhounds are bred for gambling, not for eating. If they could be eaten then at least they would not be wastage, oops I mean wasted. 

NarelleTapp
NarelleTapp
5 years ago

Well, These comments show such a lack of knowledge or a strong bias that the writer doesn’t want to open their mind to a balanced outcome. If a Greyhound has a litter of Pups, will that mean a wager is made? No. If a wager is made, does a Greyhound get born? No. The act of a Greyhound having a litter or a wager being made are 2 seperate acts and are are not related. Therefore Greyhounds are not bred for gambling. The Greyhound Business model that you are referring to is not dependant on killing Greyhounds it is mostly… Read more »

Hugh_
Hugh_
5 years ago

BobWhitelaw Some would argue that sacrificing animals for food, where all the animals that are sacrificed are actually eaten, is something they can justify compared to sacrificing many animals to obtain a few that run around in circles for gambling.  Also not all animals are equal in intelligence, a prawn or a goldfish can’t be compared to a lamb.  A bunch of things you’re mentioning as equivilents are not equivilents, the argument is more nuanced than “industries where animals die are the same”.

BobWhitelaw
BobWhitelaw
5 years ago

Hugh  Whether you think my argument is nuanced  or not   is no argument  , when the facts are people are eating dogs in some parts of the world every day and i don’t shy away from that, nor should you . There is no way you can hide the facts  that business  is making big bucks  out of sacrificing animals no matter what species they are and most have a very short life span. i believe your argument that greyhound racing  is no more  then a gambling exercise is only one part of the sport activities , we  now… Read more »

Dezzey
Dezzey
5 years ago

Hugh_ Did you read Paul Sheehan’s comment  about the calis that processed meat can cause cancer.? It was a personal piece but food for thought.  “Australia is bipolar when it comes to the treatment of animals. We have one of the world’s most entrenched systems of factory farming, where industrial scale processing of pigs, chickens and cattle would appal most people if they were exposed to the process, co-existing with one of the world’s highest rates of animal companionship. Errol Simper in The Australian grudgingly gave him the Columnist of the week award for the piece on how well he summed up our (most… Read more »

Dezzey
Dezzey
5 years ago

NarelleTapp Hi,  I read last year’s Inquiry transcripts and recommendations, I’ve read this years (emotive) so far Special Inquiry and I’ve learned a lot from Bruce. My comments were in response to another poster who always bundles livestock issues with Greyhound matters. If the end result is that Greyhounds are used primarily for gambling purposes then yes, I’m afraid they are bred as a product for the gambling industry. I doubt racing will cease in NSW but acknowledging that its terrible terrible management (thanks for enlightening Bruce) and the behaviours allowed to become normal proactive will go along way in… Read more »

Hugh_
Hugh_
5 years ago

BobWhitelaw  I don’t have a cat, not sure why you’d assume I did.

My point is that you were making an argument of false equivalence to support an accusation of hypocrisy.

I have to be honest I don’t follow whatever point you’re trying to make about shock jocks an millionaires, you’re posts are very confusing to read.  I don’t say that to be offensive, I’m assuming english is your second language.

MarionPurnell
MarionPurnell
5 years ago

BobWhitelaw Bob, if you want to add a greyhound streak to your peas and potatoes you certainly won’t be judged a hypocrite.

Hugh_
Hugh_
5 years ago

Dezzey Hugh_ Please don’t mistake my stance.  I’m simply attempting to put some perspective on the value of food vs entertainment/gambling, and suggesting that Bob is using an argument of false equivalence.  I’m not trying to suggest that there aren’t huge ethical issues with regards to the meat industry. As it happens I have read the article you mention, and personally am very selective with what meat and dairy I consume, with welfare being my primary concern.  I’m not ideologically opposed to killing/eating animals as a blanket rule, but I care very much about how animals are treated and the quality… Read more »