Thursday, December 21, 2006

DoC nightmare

Don't start me on the sway that DoC holds over this country - it is truly terrifying

Get yourself a good stiff drink, sit down and read this:

Scary Report

Then tell me in the morning if you had nightmares.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Whangamata Marina

I am both delighted and deeply dismayed that Whangamata has got its marina. Let me say from the outset that I couldn't give a stuff whether there is a marina in the town or not. Or whether eskimos can gather pipis from the harbour or not. The marina is just a vehicle that illustrates the parlous state the governance of this country is in.
I am delighted that the judicial system has rightly triumphed over political meddling. I am dismayed that it has taken so long and in fact that the conflict arose at all that it had to be rectified. The Herald's Editorial reckons that Carter should resign on the back of this. Of course he should, but both you and I know he won't because there is no such thing as doing the honourable thing in New Zealand politics. The worthless wretch is such a pitiable member of the human race that he probably still doesn't realise that he has trangressed. All the opprobrium being rightfully heaped upon him will be like water off a protected duck's back. Like a cracked record I harp on about the folly of failing to keep the judiciary and executive separate when running a country and this whole sorry affair is a prime example of what can happen when you stuff it up.
Just to compound the errors, look at the way the back down was handled yesterday. Carter doesn't have the balls to reverse his own decision so he flicks the hospital pass to Benson Dope. The High Court ruling gave Carter no choice but to reverse his decision but he says he passed the buck because he could not make a decision without bias. Bollocks. If you have a decision made for you there is no 'deciding' to do and bias doesn't come into it. No, he couldn't bring himself to stand up straight like a man and admit he was wrong. Come on, you spineless toad, say it. 'I was wrong'. You can't, can you, because you are a politician belonging to a Party that deals in duplicitous weasel words as its only form of currency. You can't because you are devoid of any of the principles that proper people use to run their lives. You can't because you are a waste of space.
The High Court delivered its decision in September?, October? and gave the uselesss Carter two weeks to come up with the definitive ruling. But no, Spineless Boy a) ducks for cover and b) waits until a few days before Xmas before sending his 'mate' over the top in the hope that everyone will be too full of eggnog to notice. The media tried in vain to get Carter, Benson Dope or anybody from Government to comment on the climb down yesterday but no one had the gumption to front up.
The whole thing is shameful on a magnitude that defies belief. The Marina Society has apparently paid about $1 million over ten years to get this far and they will get back about 10% of this in Court awarded costs. Carter is out of pocket to the tune of $0.00 and will likely keep his job so that he can go and grandstand over protecting the great white shark from recreational fishermen - three caught over the last twenty years.
Carter is but one example of the sort of pond life that runs this country and it is very, very ugly.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Silly season

We are coming up to the so called silly season and what is being peddled as the main story today certainly fits the bill.
This land use manipulation is so nutty that it would be funny if it wasn't so tragic. The loonies who would run our lives have allowed themselves to be convinced that global warming is all man's fault and we should therefore do something about it. They then sign up to the Kyoto bollocks on my behalf. Anything they do in this regard from this start is doomed. We are now deeply involved in this carbon credits nonsense. And that is what it is, pure unadulterated crap. It is shuffling buts of paper around international desks with people clipping the ticket at every turn with no concrete return or even the prospect of a concrete return.
On the back of all this the Government yesterday announced the 'final plank' in its environment platform. This is mind numbingly stupid. The basic premise is that trees are good 'cos they eat the evil carbon dioxide (a minor 'greenhouse gas' by the way) and pastures is bad 'cos they feeds cows that burp and fart. Therefore, we need more of the former and less of the latter. First logical error right there. It's like saying bank robbers are bad and if we had no banks crime would decrease. So the 'tax or ban everything we don't like' government says if you convert forest to pasture you will be fined (and in all probability flogged). The return per acre from forestry is dropping like a stone, the return per acre from dairy is headed in the opposite direction. Landowners and farmers are businessmen and not idealogical stupid zealots. What are they going to do with their land? It is nuts. This bunch of pratts in the Beehive needs to get their ideas out of their never never land and back into the real world. A bloke in suit from Wellington arrives on a farm and tells the cocky to cease his profitable dairy farming and plant unprofitable pine trees so that he (the suit) can fufill his obligation to the stupid and useless Kyoto protocol? Yeah right. Agriculture is still the backbone of the economic activity of this place and the blokes that run it won't stand for this load of bollocks - or I sincerely hope they won't.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Horace the talking horse

The Auckland Fruit Loop Society held its Xmas bash yesterday and decided that nothing could be more festive than a day spent at the Eden Park Upgrade RMA hearing. The opening skit was by a bloke saying the facility shouldn't be built because he would be unable dry his baby's nappies for three years because of construction dust. But this was just a curtain raiser for the main act, a guest appearance from an expert. She opined that the upgrade will be a health hazrad as the increased shadows cast by a larger stadium will result in decreased vitamin D absorption in local residents. The Society was a little disappointed that the bearded lady and Horace the talking horse could not attend.
You'll all be pleased to know that I've solved global warming. The Herald gives us the answer today. We need a nuclear war. Not a very big one (Iran vs Iraq with Iran playing at home would do nicely - it's also a suitably long way from NZ) but a nuclear conflagration is required. This will result in a 'catastrophic' period of global cooling - or so some experts would have us believe. Sounds good to me - bring it on.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

What are weapons for then?

The Editorial sees fit to wade into the Muruli business this morning. a) they are wrong and b) it is over and we move on.
Why are some sections of the Police armed sometimes? To threaten to shoot and maybe even shoot the bad people I would have thought. Apparently not. Plod is being tried for carelessly discharging his weapon whilst apprehending a bloke who was a) thought to be armed and b) probably chemically altered. The shot hit no one and the bloke was arrested. Am I missing something here? Oh, and there is another member of the constabulary being hauled before the beak for using his police dog as a weapon. Loonies and Keith Locke (wait a minute they are one and the same thing) are incharge of the asylum.
Schools. Nasty, horrible, fount of all evil fizzy soft drinks are to be removed from schools. Without going into the rights and wrongs of this (and I can't be bothered), why does this take three years to achieve? No fizzy drinks decision today, no fizzy drinks tomorrow would be the way I would do it. Three years?
There is a very worrying commentary on the new curriculum review. We mentioned this document several months back. The commentator, an educationalist from the Auckland University, is getting all bitter and twisted that this serpiginous document is not getting the attention she thinks it deserves. Reading the garbage she writes about it I can see why all sensible people would be givinig it the swerve. This woman is another of the types that are peppered through our society who use English words to speak in Martian about nebulous ideas that have no connection with the planet on which we live. Waste of space and, as usual, funded by my taxes.
There is a classic of the genre of mournful victim portrait with the Liam Ashly family in the frame. I am not for a minute getting on their cae. They have suffered a tragic loss but the photo is a ripper. The facial expressions are just what this sort of photograph demands. No time this morning to comment on the Headmistress's comments that the Minister for Corrections shouldn't resign over all this because he is 'responsible but not to blame' and he is a 'compassionate' person. It deserves more than 'same old, same old' but that is what it is. It'll keep and maybe I'll find more time in the next couple of days.

Monday, December 11, 2006


This Muruli thing has me puzzled. Here we have a very experienced Test cricketer (second in the all time wicket taking stakes) who you may argue has only got to that position because of the make up of the power base of the ICC and he makes the sort of error you usually see at schoolboy cricket level. He is quite legitimately given out and the country who encourages schools not to keep the score at netball start crying foul. He stuffed up because he wasn't concentrating (as we all do) in a professional sport and got done by Mr McCullum who was, at that moment, being a lot more professional. End of story. Spirit of the game - bollocks. Why should cricket be any different from any other sport. As Richard Boock points out this morning what would we all be saying this morning if McCullum had stayed his natural instincts and they had gone on to accrue another 40 runs and we had lost? Had Brendan not caught the throw in would Sangakara have turned down the overthrow to retain the strike? I don't think so. Would Gilchrist have done the same? Bloody right he would.
We hear time and time again that for NZ sport to move on we need a bit more 'mongrel' (what a dreadful expression), need to be a bit more like the Aussies who, when they have a foot on the throat, just push harder and harder. We see a great example of just that and we turn all touchy feely again. 'He was only going to congratulate his mate'. Tough. He's a big boy now and he's playing big boys games for big boys money.
I'll resist the temptation to point out that I think he is the best chucker of a cricket ball the world has ever seen. Oops, I just have.

Friday, December 8, 2006

NCEA & tinsel

By far the best piece in the rag this morning is on the comments page and is written by the principal of Rosmini Colege in Takapuna. It is a very well balanced critique of the current secondary education sytem with particular emphasis on the examination structure. The current debate is whether NCEA is preferable to an end of course externally marked exam. He clearly points out the pros and cons of both systems (and both have both - NCEA or standards based assessment is not evil) and concludes that the answer is somwhere in the middle. How often in life is this the case? Very little, in my experience, is either wholly right or wholly wrong. We need to take the best from all sorts of different sources instead of saying 'This is the way, the only way and everything else is just plain wrong'. Rarely ssems to happen.
There is a bit about Xmas decorations in UK offices. Nuts and just more of the same silly PC and/or OSH nonsense. Children not being allowed to wear tinsel on their clothes at a Xmas 'no uniform' day as it could be used to strangle other kids, don't put decorations on your computer monitor as they are a 'significant' fire hazard etc. etc.
Same old, same old.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Nanny state & Shane Warne

Today Garth George comes out of the closet that he has only been hiding in to the terminally stupid. He nails his right wing christian (non denominational) colours very firmly to the mast in his review of 'From Angels to Agents'. This is not so much a review but a series of abstracts from the recent book that chronicles the changing place that children have in New Zealand society. It is an exposition of the attitudes and ideas of the current regime in relation to the shift from protecting children to removing them from society as a category all together. Giving them 'rights' that are equal or, in some cases, superior to their parents, the stupidity and logically untenable ideas behind repealing of Section 59 of the Crimes Act, the quest to give children the vote, its all covered. In addition there is the inescapable idea that if parental resposnibilty is fast being neutered by state legislaton this role has to be taken over by some other institution and what better here than the state. I can find no fault in the arguments and find it very chilling. I have long thought that the current regime's most dangerous side is its tampering with the very fabric of society throwing out sytems that have worked for most people for centuries (like prudent parental disciplne within the framework of a nuclear family) in favour of untried idealogical claptrap thought up in environments divorced from the real world only years or decades ago. Just look at the background of those who run the country at present - it is not representative of the world in which a vast majority of us live. Their ideas and odious ideals come from a different and largely theoretical planet which none of us ever visit. I don't like it one little bit.
A male barrister wearing a skirt is an image guaranteed to get one's attention and it worked for me. This heads a piece about an American lawyer's worldwide legal awards. The beskirted doge is from New Zealand and wins the 'Most Bizarre Behaviour' award. There are some other real pearlers. 'Judge of the Year' went to the joker in the States who was prosecuted for using a penis pump whilst presiding in court; in retrospect he thought this might not have been a good idea. Witness of the year was a woman who described her husband as so boring that his idea of a rollicking Saturday night was looking through the dictionary for high scoring words to be used in Scrabble. Very entertaining.

Shane Warne. Rarely can the sporting world have seen such a Jekyll and Hyde. Complete plonker off the pitch and absolute genius on it. I love my sport but I love the proper contests and not the drubbings. The last Ashes series in the UK wrecked my sleep pattern for weeks as it was so addictive. The first Test in Brisbane was a one sided bore. The second Test was mildly interesting (as it gave hope that the series as a contest was being reborn) until Tuesday arvo. I then could do nothing else but watch it. And mainly I was watching Pie Boy at the absolute peak of his freakish powers. Not only is he not a bad bowler but he uses that gift to the utmost by employing it as a psychological dirty bomb. Take Pietersen's dismissal for example. In the first innings Our Kev thrust his pad outside his leg stump, bat held aloft for hours and Warnie was rendered impotent. Somehow come the second innings the portly one had persuaded Pietersen that just one little sweep would be OK. Bowled round his legs in a Gattingesque diplay - and this fifteen years after his first totally unforgettable ball. Absolute bloody genius. Get Warne the other side of the boundary rope and he is a total waste of space with a private life that wouldn't feature in my worst nightmare - imagine having to go through life like that - yukkk. What the hell is he going to do when he can't play cricket any more? I hope the spectre of George Best is not on the horizon.

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Toll roads

The poorest pieceof writing I have seen in ages besmirches the comments page today. It is almost totally unreadable but if you soldier on you find it is totally unitelligble. It is a tirade against road tolls. And that is all. It is written by a spokesman for a mob calling themselves and has a link to their website which is even worse than the Herald article. Absolute drivel. Toll roads are a good idea as are congestion charges - the two are very different, of course. Full stop. Roads are expensive to build (even the rubbish they construct in this country) and I for one don't mind paying a couple of bucks to use a nice shiny new one. $2 to avoid having to drive round Waiwera - bargain of the century. I'm a bit concerned about the amounts of money bveing bandied around for collection and admin costs, but in principal I reckon toll roads are good.
But they are not quite as good as congestion charges. These are terrific. I've lived for ages in a country that had them (Singapore) and driven a little in a city that has them (London) and they work like a Swiss watch. Go past the barrier and you pay. Dnn't pay and you get fined - serious fines that are actually collected. Central city congestion virtually disappears.
I'll admit to one slight snag in the NZ/Auckland context; there is no viable public transport network to go in the place of shedfuls of cars. Get rid of five City Councils and the ARC and replace them with one body with a benign dictator of my chosing at the helm and we could have it all sortd in no time.

Monday, December 4, 2006


Things a bit slow at the moment and a wander around Moenui (where I haven't been for years) has been a welcome diversion.
You don't drop Ponting on thirty five and get away with it. To whom did Steve Waugh say 'You've just dropped the Ashes'? I can't remember but I hope those words don't haunt poor Ashley Giles - I'm sure he didn't sleep well last night. I'll freely admit I thought England were going to get a pasting from go to whoa and the events at the Gabba gave me no reason to change my opinion. I am delighted that the series looks like it might have some substance after all. There is nothing worse than a sporting contest that isn't. Can't say the prospect of the Black Caps vs Sri Lanka at the end of the week is getting the hairs on the back of my neck standing on end, though.
Lets hope there is something new to scribble about around the corner (there generally is) as I can raise little enthusiasm for incompetent politicians, local authorities, climate change and the rest of the usual suspects. I need an invasion from Mars or something to get the juices flowing again.