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Local economic growth is zero – What to do?

The opening of the Kopu business precinct was clearly a much desired combined project with funding and hard work from central government, local and regional government and local businesses. Mayor Len spoke to this theme in his speech at the opening. However, industries that rely on discretionary spending – think tourism, food services and retail are declining. Discretionary spending is what ratepayers do when we purchase something that is not essential, and it is what tourists do when they visit here. In this article, the Mayor was quoted as stating that, “Councils would always struggle to...

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Where is New Zealand Governance going in the forseeable future?

In the past, the government of the day has tended to increase its popularity initially and its supporting parties have generally been pushed down, found it hard to get attention and progress their policies and desires. This has not been quite as obvious on the opposition side as being in opposition provides you with more room to stamp your foot and push whatever it is you wish to push. The change we are seeing is that the minor parties are becoming more stable in terms of support and as such their policies and views are becoming more effectual. This is especially relevant on the government...

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The greatest of all time? – The Forwards

Zinzan Brooke. Number 8 – There have been some magnificent Number 8s in Māori rugby with possibly the most skilful being Zinzan Brooke. In making my selection, I felt the need to pick a team captain, a person the whole team would follow. This does of course lead me to pick Buck, now Sir Wayne Shelford (1982 to 1990). Buck had to be the toughest player you ever saw. Tales of having his scrotum repaired in the middle of a test match and so on testify to this. He was an unbeaten All Black captain, not losing a game in 27 tests as leader, so he is my pick as captain for this squad. Blindside Flanker...

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The greatest of all time

He was “the man” to us young fellas at that time because of the way he played the game – innovative, strong and very quick to spot an opportunity. Was he our greatest half back of all time? Technically he would not be. Aaron Smith would probably take that crown, but he would be close and in terms of entertainment value, I think he would be top of the tree. Musing on this one day, I gave myself a challenge of picking the greatest Maori All Black team from the era beginning in the late sixties when I started watching rugby at the higher levels. The reason I decided on Maori All Blacks rather...

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LTP provides an opportunity to honour commitment

The answer lies in the process the Council has put in place, a process that is cumbersome and ineffectual. It is very questionable that this process works for rate payers. I took part in this process this year and from what I observed it is about the Council, presumably Councillors and senior staff, constructing and presenting their plan, or some of it, and we mere ratepayers are just meant to agree with them. When we are consulted on our ideas we are given a crayon to write with and a postage-stamp sized piece of paper to write on. We are not told what the Council’s ideas are so we cannot...

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What we need is a great big melting pot

The message is really quite simple; if we all want to get on peacefully with each other then we need to do away with the barriers that prevent this; barriers that are related to geography, ethnicity and class. One of the things that stirred me to dwell on this subject was the upcoming By Election for a vacant Maori Ward seat in Hamilton. The Herald article on this event reported the rules for standing are that the candidate must be a New Zealand citizen, the candidate must be enrolled as a parliamentary elector and the candidate must be nominated by two electors whose names appear on the electoral...

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Why are socialists so rude these days?

Matt was obviously taken aback. He is a mild-mannered West Coast boy who would not be used to such attacks from either his mother or wife. I thought that maybe this was a one-off display of rudeness, after all Ms Genter is American born so possibly this is acceptable behaviour for their womenfolk. Upon giving this matter a bit more thought however, I decided you couldn’t blame her American bloodline. After all there are other examples of rudeness such as Green Party Co-Leader Chloe Swarbrick shrilly accusing the Prime Minister of lying to Parliament regarding climate change. She did eventually...

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We are becoming more corrupt

We are getting worse and this is a concern as we all have to pay for this. When, for example, a power company must pay many millions that they should not have to pay, purely to get a project approved, who eventually pays those millions? We do of course. Corruption is defined by Oxford Languages as “Dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power, typically involving bribery”. The prime element of this definition is power and this can come in many forms. The introduction of the Resource Management Act many years ago opened us up for an increase in corruption by expanding the number of groups...

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