Guns and Gangs

Like her government’s policies at home or not, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is at her brilliant best on the international stage. The standing ovation which greeted her commencement speech to Harvard University, in which she touched on gun violence and the dangers of an unregulated internet, was genuine and prolonged and she also received a…

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Separatism

On Friday February 11, 2022 I  tuned into a Zoom meeting hosted by Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) to discuss Treaty of Waitangi partnerships in local government.  Firstly, the principal objective in the constitution of LGNZ which hosted the discussion is to “To promote the national interests of local government through the promotion of LGNZ’s vision…

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Is ANZAC a nostalgic dream?

The so-called trans-Tasman relationship, which we will commemorate next Sunday on Anzac Day, has never been more abused than it is now. While the somewhat idealistic brotherhood in arms tradition was established by a previous generation on the bloody slopes of Gallipoli more than a century ago, there is now a new conflict festering beneath the surface which is raising temperatures and tempers on both side of the Tasman.

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Revenge is not Justice

The appeal by the man convicted of the 2019 Christchurch mosque massacre against his jail conditions and terrorist status was not surprising. He probably has little else to do and his action follows the pattern of many long-term prison inmates who have used their time to engage in ongoing litigation, often at taxpayer expense.

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A virus is not deterred by bishops or anybody else

It has been a long and difficult year since the first nationwide lockdown to take Covid-19 out of the community and keep the deadly virus confined to managed isolation facilities.The economic cost for many has been enormous, the social cost for others has been devastating, a few have lost family members but many have had…

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Last year was a pass. We have much to be proud of.

In spite of some recent inaccurate rhetoric from both sides of the political debate racism has always been here, as it has in most other nations and communities. It is as difficult to define as it will be to eradicate and screaming racism at everything we don’t like or understand doesn’t help. But, if anyone can succeed we can and we will be the first nation in the world to do so.

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The War on Drugs only has losers.

Many past generations of parents have watched in helpless distress as their children changed from healthy, ambitious youngsters to unemployable zombies, visited them in jail or buried them as a result of illegal drug use. Too many young people today don’t even have parents who worry about them at all due to their own drug habits.

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Cannabis Law Change not worth it

We are being asked to approve something which is potentially harmful to at least some vulnerable people so that others can get high. Given that there are so many other ways for people to enjoy themselves, legalising cannabis is probably not a good idea.

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A wish list for 2020

In the first week of each new year, for the past three or four decades, I have looked back through the scribbled pages of my now filled diary and wonder how we survived it all. Then I look at the pristine unmarked pages of the new diary and wonder what issues and events will fill…

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Medical Cannabis

In spite of the claims by several groups there is no reliable, peer reviewed, science, so far, to show that cannabis, in any form cures anything. There is good evidence however to show that, properly administered, it is an effective sedative and pain inhibitor without many of the nasty side effects of conventional medications. Two bills before Parliament last week had potential to provide the correct access to the people who need it and those who do not. It’s a shame that politics and ignorance got in the way.

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