Voice of Real Australia: NSW fires making the issue very hazy

Voice of Real Australia is a regular newsletter from Australian Community Media, which has journalists in every state and territory. Sign up here to get it by email, or here to forward it to a friend. Today's newsletter is written by Northern Daily Leader Journalist, Jacob McArthur.

UP IN SMOKE: Maybe Scott Morrison would agree it is time to it is time to burst some bubbles and clear the air. Photos: Jacob McArthur

UP IN SMOKE: Maybe Scott Morrison would agree it is time to it is time to burst some bubbles and clear the air. Photos: Jacob McArthur

It might be a bit hard to hear my voice in this corner of real Australia this week.

I'm certainly not being a quiet Australian, but I will have to speak up over all of the coughing, spluttering and through my air mask.

For the past few days in Tamworth, we have been advised to stay indoors as much as possible as air quality readings have blown out here and across the state.

A glimpse out the window was a grim sight with the wooded hills usually on the horizon shrouded in smoke.

It is as though we're in smoke-filled bubble, cut off from the rest of the world.

For much of his tenure as prime minister, Scott Morrison has decried the invisible presence of a bubble around Canberra.

It's a bubble he discourages people from looking into it.

What happens in there is irrelevant to those outside.

Here in the Tamworth bubble, it feels like no one wants to look in it.

I didn't want to write a piece about bushfires this week, but it is really all around us in NSW

It has sucked all oxygen from other issues and people's brains it seems.

One person said to me this week fire brings out the idiot in a lot of us.

From McCormack's "raving inner-city loonies", to Joyce's clumsy contribution to Craig Emerson's comparison of green socialism to white supremacy, it's a raging political bonfire right now with no shortage of kindling.

Maybe it is a bit unfair to tar everyone with that brush, but the discourse has a made a pressing issue very hazy and it has made a lot of people very irritable and perhaps a bit panicked.

The smoke might be clearing from this bonfire, but the heat is rising again

Other states are now bracing for extreme November temperatures and fire danger.

Getting up close to the fires near Tamworth last week, I heard one volunteer say the fire season could last anywhere from August to April now.

The chance of their forecast becoming a reality is frightening and so is thought of the associated political smoke and bluster, like we've seen, being prolonged any further.

Hopefully some bubbles burst some time soon so the smoke can clear and we can talk about what is going on here.

Why not today?

Jacob McArthur is a journalist at the Northern Daily Leader

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