Kapi-Mana News : August 16th 2011
8 KAPI-MANA NEWS, AUGUST 16, 2011 OPINION 3957467AA LETTERS CORRECTION In a letter published August 2, Tipene Makatea meant to refer to Treaty of Waitangi claim WAI 262, not 626. A corrected version of the letter was received from Mr Makatea. It was the original version that was published. EKERS' WEEK Discrimination Editor, Gordon Campbell s August 2 article When it doesn t hurt to be ignored contains a crass misrepresentation. John Key is quoted as saying If it is an act of global terrorism then I think what it shows is that no country, large or small, is immune from that risk . Had John said unequivocally, Itisanactof. . . thenhewould be fair game for criticism. Yet Gordon unequivocally states that Norwegian terrorist Anders Breveik was a far right Christian fundamentalist , which is not borne out in his manifesto. Breveik wrote, It is therefore essential to understand the difference between a Christian fundamentalist theocracy (everything we do not want) and a secular European society based on our Christian cultural heritage (what we do want). Further on, Breveik explains that a perfect Europe will come about through logic . He states, logic and rationalist thought (a certain degree of national Darwinism) should be the fundament of our societies. Wouldn t it be an unfair slur to claim he was a far right Freemason since he was a member, who sees them as fine representatives and curators (keepers of cultural heritage) ? Even if used unwittingly, the term far right Christian fundamentalist is discriminatory. ANDREW McINTOSH, Whitby. Shame on you Editor, Of late, I ve witnessed several occasions where not all people that use the disabled car parks are actually disabled. Whilst waiting for the AA to arrive to assist me, imagine my shock and dismay (and that of my 20-year-old son) at the brazen able-bodied people who were blatantly using the disabled carparks outside The Warehouse in Porirua on Saturday, July 30, all for the sake of saving themselves the strenuous activity of having to walk a few additional metres. They took it upon themselves to use the parks closest and most convenient for them, too bad about the valid disabled users who may have needed those parks. I watched as a couple of able- bodied men packed up their car while a valid user of the disabled park waited and waited and waited. I also watched as a rather large lady pulled up and used the disabled parks to go and purchase some chippies and chocolate. Shame on those people. ANGELA BRAY, Pauatahanui. Going postal Editor, Well, I applaud the new letterboxes to be installed along Mungavin Ave in time for the World Cup, and I guess when our dear overseas guests are stuck in one of Metlink s trains going nowhere at Porirua station, they could fill in time by checking out the new letterboxes in Mungavin Ave! L BROWNE, Ranui Heights. Tiger tale welcome Editor, Regarding Taping the Tiger of Bipolar Disorder by Jim Chipp [KMN June 21]. I welcomed the above article which documented the positive qualities of people with bipolar disorder. As was rightly pointed out, those with bipolar disorder can often be very creative people and high achievers -- characteristics that are widely reflected in members of our peer support group. Too often people who experience mental distress are stigmatised and isolated within the community. Instead we should celebrate the resolve, determination and skills and resources people develop to overcome the quite overwhelming obstacles such illnesses can present. Moreover, many people, despite the debilitating challenges they face, function just like any other members of society. With one in five New Zealanders experiencing mental illness at some point in their lives we need to focus on people s talents and abilities rather than portraying them in a negative light. Balance Wellington support group, as a peer group run by volunteers does just this. The group meets once a month in Johnsonville Community Centre and the informal group meetings offer a supportive non-judgmental environment where people are able to build self-esteem and confidence through sharing experiences and information. For more information contact group facilitator, Fiona, 027 331 4247 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. CLARE LENNARD, Island Bay. (Letter abridged) Disheartening Editor, Paremata Kindergarten has a wonderful setting by the inlet down off State Highway 58, and it is led by a dedicated, creative and committed group of staff. Unfortunately our situation can also make us vulnerable, and recently we have been targeted by vandals and burglars. We have had three break-ins in the last month, along with some graffiti. We have recently strengthened our security measures, but in the face of funding cuts and in the midst of preparing for a fundraiser to help with renovations, the break-ins are disheartening, to say the least. We know we are not alone in this situation -- we were appalled to see the Salvation Army food bank recently targeted, and know that other educational places around the community regularly suffer in this way. Our purpose in writing this letter is to publicly express our support for the teaching and support staff, and to alert the local community to these events. Please be in touch with the police or let the kindergarten know if any suspicious activity is spotted. And regardless of where you live in the Porirua area, think global and act local. Please make sure you have taken sufficient precautions with your treasured community assets and make friends with the neighbours to help keep these precious places secure. MARILYN HUNT, Secretary, Paremata Kindergarten Committee. Leggett's letter Editor, I have recently seen an Official Information Act request for correspondence to and from Steven Joyce since his time as Transport Minister with regards to the Wellington Road of National Significance. Among the correspondence it is with some horror that I read a letter from Porirua Mayor Nick Leggett dated March 4, 2011. In it, Mr Leggett states: Rumours circulating since the Christchurch earthquake relating to the possible delays in the commencement of the [Airport to Levin arterial plan] are causing concern. He goes on to state: I would like to request that the Government ring-fence the funding for the entire airport to Levin arterial plan. My interpretation of these comments is that Mr Leggett is more concerned for easing a few minutes of traffic congestion in his own region than he is for the hundreds that have been left homeless in Christchurch. While I understand that the rest of New Zealand should not be left unconsidered while rebuilding Christchurch, Mr Leggett could as least have waited for the rubble to clear before leaping on any money available to satisfy his own means. And his request to ring-fence money for his own projects is completely at odds with another statement he makes, that We are strongly supportive of a comprehensive rebuilding of [Christchurch]...with support from across New Zealand. Just not from your electorate, aye Nick? B BEGOVICH, Kapiti. Mr Leggett responds: B Begovich seems to think she has stumbled onto some kind of scoop. In fact what she quotes me on is nothing new and all my comments have previously been covered in both the Kapi-Mana and Dominion Post. Ms Begovich is clearly an anti- expressway campaigner from the Kapiti Coast, which is a fair position to have. However, I stand by my comments that roading upgrades for Wellington communities are still required and that the Christchurch earthquake reinforces the need for an alternative access from the region rather than presenting the Government of the day an excuse to yet again do nothing . The good news is that Steven Joyce has indicated that the airport to Levin roading upgrades are safe. Survey a joke Editor, Mayor Nick Leggett and his council must think Porirua residents are stupid when his council released their annual residents survey data claiming 76 per cent of residents say they are satisfied with the way their rates are spent. Currently, some councillors [have a] fantasy that blowing away millions of our dollars in demolishing the canopied area of the city will remove the perception that the canopies presence encourages crime, loitering and shoddy shops. Security cameras, classical music and a word in the ears of inept shop owners will fix those problems for less than $100,000. As for his farcical surveys, most people know that survey questions can be loaded to achieve a desired result and the results manipulated to suit an argument. In this latest case, his claim of 76 per cent satisfaction approval only applied to 76 per cent of the 400 people surveyed; a total of 0.63 per cent of 48000 Porirua residents. R R BRADY, Whitby. (Letter abridged) PCC chief executive Gary Simpson responds: The survey is undertaken on behalf of the council by the National Research Bureau using robust and accurate survey methodology and the results are widely used to evaluate most council activities. Surveys are used by a large number of councils in New Zealand and the NRB undertakes a large proportion of those surveys. Part of their service allows councils to benchmark and compare results and this one reason why Porirua City uses this particular survey. While Mr Brady may disagree with the survey findings he cannot credibly fault either the integrity of the questions or the robustness of the methodology. While there will always be people who have conflicting views, the mayor and I regularly meet a large number of residents and business owners in the course of our work, and the general feedback we are getting is consistent with the survey results.
August 9th 2011
August 23rd 2011