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Showing posts from April, 2017

Post Truth delivers Dumb and Dumber

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Few planets support life and the Earth is actually a unique and fragile entity that took over 4.5 billion years to reach its current form. The ecosystems that support life and determine the health and sustainability of our world are dependent on complex inter-relationships. One small change to the balance of these relationships can have catastrophic consequences.

Modern humans have existed for 200,000 years and the last 200 have seen global industrialisation and massively growing consumption and competition for the world's natural resources. It took 700 years for the human population to grow from 370 million to 1.5 billion, but less than 100 years to explode to 7.5 billion.

We are living on a finite planet with an exploding population of human animals who are increasingly demanding a greater share of the remaining resources. Our activity and consumption has caused much of our forests to disappear, 1.3 million square kilometres since 1990 (or an area larger than South Africa). We a…

Bill English cares deeply about his books

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Prime Minister Bill English majored in English Literature and this background has taught him the importance of caring for books. Under his stewardship as Treasurer, and now Prime Minister, the Government's books having never been in better shape. Bill has instructed and guided all Ministers about the proper care of their books and much effort and staffing has been put into dusting and polishing their books and making sure they are neatly arranged.

While there has been much demand on the Government and its Ministers to open their books and be a little more generous in their use, strong discipline has been needed to ensure that the books remain firmly on the shelves. Open books and dog-eared pages are an anathema to Bill and when his footsteps are heard around the beehive corridors there is a flurry of activity as books are hurriedly closed and shelved.

This focus on book-keeping has meant necessary sacrifices have had to be made:
Police numbers have been kept at a minimum despite …

Green List provides diversity and credible experience

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The Green Party's list ranking is an ordeal for both candidates and members, having to rank such a talented group (especially when many are friends), isn't easy. For a party that promotes cooperation and consensus decision making, the process is one of the few within the party that has to be competitive and one where secret ballots are used for voting.

There are also some guidelines applied to ensure that the list reflects the diversity in our society to provide the broadest representation and have connections to a variety of cultures and demographics: For every ten candidates at least one should be Maori and at least one should be under 35 years; for every five candidates at least two should be male and at least two should be female, at least one should be from the South Island and at least two from the North Island.

The initial list (created by the delegates and candidates who attended the Greens' Candidate Conference in February) has just been released and the final li…