Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The new version of 'Roskill' has gone to print.

Finally---yes Roskill has gone to print and it will be available very soon from my new website. This time it is under my control and I shall actually get paid for what I sell. You will be able to purchase the book from my website using PayPal, a safe way of purchasing-----no more making payments and not receiving the book.
Roskill will be followed by a re-worked ‘Coastal Yarns’ and the about to be released ‘Talk To Me.’
My website is   Don’t hit it until I have the book(s) online. I will let you know.

China--- This one's for you!

China has arrived big time. It now rivals the economic giants like Japan and the USA in its economic prowess. This should not surprise us if we look at China’s long and illustrious history. While Europe languished in the ‘Dark Ages,’ China was forging ahead with its culture and nation building.
Even 1500 years ago, everything about China was ‘big.’ It is in this ‘bigness’--- the huge population that the issues for China arise; both for now--- and then.
We all know that China has had a second growth period; after it had turned in and away from the rest of the world, hundreds of years ago. It then suffered at the hands of Western and Japanese imperialism and it was only under the Communist party that it finally threw off the shackles that were imposed.
The Communist Party without a doubt raised the standard of living for a vast number of ordinary Chinese, offering them hope for a better life. That did not come without costs, in human terms and for the environment.
China now faces the same problems that the rest of the so-called democratic world faced in the struggle for a fairer society. Fingers are pointed at China for its abuse of human rights in the Western sense. It is very easy to point out serious failings when it comes to the right of Chinese citizens to criticise their Government. We all know the plight of those languishing in the less developed countryside, where the opportunities are less than those in the cities.
Even in the huge industrial areas, where most of the products China manufactures for the rest of the world are made, life is not easy. Housing is often far from desirable, but for those living there, it is seen as better than the lives they left behind. Progress comes at a cost.
What is going to happen in China? Just look at the history of many European and emerging Asian nations. As the middle-classes expanded, there was a push for other change--- namely the right to vote, to choose life options freely and to express those thoughts in art, fashion and other ways. We are seeing it on a large scale in India too. China is no different.
There is a growing understanding of environmental issues in China---indeed an emerging ‘green movement.’ Along with the push for ‘more say’ from the populace, the Communist Party of China faces pressure to change. That can only come on ‘Chinese terms,’ not a Western idealism about ‘what is right for China.’ We have seen what happens when the West tries to force changes in Asia and elsewhere--- it doesn’t work--- when are we going to learn that? Of course that is not going to stop Western commentators standing up for what they see as abuses of human rights in China.
China is now inextricably merged into the world-wide economic jigsaw. It depends as much on us as we do on their manufactured products. It is quickly approaching a point where it is going to face competition. The balance between making cheap products and improving the standard of living for its people is one fraught with danger. They know it and only they can find that balance. Being part of a ‘global economy’ is the main factor that will drive future changes in China. We will all be affected, one way or another.

Can we make it any clearer for you, Mr Key

The message is coming through loud and clear--- most NZers, including many of your National Party supporters--- the big flash ones--- raise the bloody age of retirement to 67. Hell--- even us lowly ones at the bottom are even saying it . You won't lose many votes. Just pull your head out of the sand and do it.; We have to look to the future, not just the perceived threat of wining or losing at the next election. It's OK to back-down, John.!

Maggie Barry--- you should know better!

I have always admired and liked Maggie Barry, from way back. I found her fascinating, engaging and knowledgeable. I am not a national party member or supporter, but I was quite pleased when she became a Member of Parliament. I thought that she would bring a certain ‘presence’ into what is sometimes a collection of boring twats.
I have heard her in the debating chamber (well--- I mean on TV) and I have been quite impressed. Hell--- you need to understand that that is quite a statement for me to make about a national MP. But yesterday, she let herself down. It is all very well, coming into Parliament with a high profile, but I suspect that carries with it the need to be measured in one’s commentaries.
Yesterday’s contribution from Maggie did not sit well with me and many people I have talked to.; Sure, in the heat of the moment it is easy to make a throw away remark, but then one should have the good grace to withdraw and apologise for the said remark. Maggie’s comment about a Labour MP not being qualified to talk on a Bill before parliament because she had not had children was below the belt. It also raised the possibility of a tit-for-tat war between the various parties. It would be very easy to respond in kind and takeaway any dignity the discussion may have had up until that point.
It would be so easy to then go one step further and bring all sorts of spurious arguments based on fake understanding into the debate.
I say--- leave those sort of comments out of the debates and stick to the main issues--- the reason why you are all there!
Come on Maggie--- learn from this.
I still like you though.