Sep 062007

Paranoia-ridden APEC security authorities should have demanded all Sydney CBD workers to pass through metal detectors before entering the cordoned zone. Restaurants should have been issued with plastic cutlery for their al fresco dining areas. Indeed, why hasn’t the Sydney CBD been completely shut down, which would have made the job of ensuring no fork-wielding malcontents approached any VIP a whole lot simpler?

All manner of conspiracy theories will abound. I’m not at all surprised by the AMP tower-blinds drawn tale. It’s not that the building management would have issued ‘don’t look, draw blinds’ edicts. Such orders would have come from employer supervisors discouraging staff from wasting work time gawking out of windows. Heaven forbid that workers might be seen looking!!! After all, it’s not everyday one spots a man with a gun on a rooftop, or experiences a helicopter buzzing past high-rise windows.
Speaking with staff of Macquarie Bank this morning, I asked just what they were experiencing, and while the general consensus was non-plussed, there was a definite expression of disdain and exasperation, mixed with feelings of apprehension. As one chap told me, “no-body’s doing anything wrong, but you’re definitely made to feel as though you are. The eyes are everywhere.” It’s all really sad, I think. One of the free-est, most relaxed societies in the world, and suddenly, because one man and his entourage breeze into town, every single citizen within a 5 klick radius of downtown Sydney becomes a potential suicide bomber. Or worse…..fork-wielder!
It’s a good thing these international back-patting and knifing, feel-good, pud-pulling shindigs only come downunder once in a blue moon. The only individuals actually gaining from the experience are the politicians. Everyone else loses out in one form or another. We’ll be told what a screaming success APEC was come next Monday, but try to run another of these things in a major capital city again to the same degree of fright-filled lunacy and watch the populace react.

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