Tuesday, October 9, 2012

A very brave young Pakistani girl---Go well!

A brave young woman is fighting for her life in Pakistan after she started a campaign to help young girls get an educartion. The Medieval Taliban then sought her out to stop her spreading 'Western Ideals,' with a bullet to her head.  It has shocked many in Pakistan, the vast majority  of whom want no part of this insidious evil group. I liken them to the Pol Pot regime that nearly destroyed another wonderful nation in South East Asia---Cambodia.
Pakistan (and God forbid, Afghanistan itself) have a terrrible dilema on their hands. Most moderatae poeple, be it with their religion or their politics, do not go to the extremes of groups like the Taliban. This of course lets these extremists gain and keep power. Even in defeat they cast their deadly spell on the people.
Pakistan and other countries need more people to stand up toextremism in all of its forms. Does it take the actions of one brave young woman and her consequent targetting to make the majority of us to wake up and repel the likes of the Taliban. Pakistan needs to take a hard look at what has happenned and protect those who are least capable of looking after themselves. All strenght to this amazing young woman and the many like her in Paskistan.

Peter Dunne---you gone and dun it eh!

I know I have been a bit of a bastard to you lately Peter, and I will continue to be so when the occasion calls for it, like with your continued support for the Government’s partial selling of State Assets, but your latest move on the ‘Party Drugs’ gives me reason to give you some roses for a change
What I am hearing sounds very sensible. Anyone bringing in or selling the drugs is going to be way out of pocket after they have paid all of the compliance costs. In effect, the legalisation is going to kill off the whole scene or at the very least, drive it underground. That in itself should cut the supply off to all those who live within the law.
Now, let’s not get too carried away. We all know a segment of the populace will always experiment and break the boundaries. Let none of us oldies act like Christ Almighty and claim total innocence in that respect. There is always the possibility that another nasty look-alike substance will come onto the scene, but the regulations as reported may go a long way to circumventing that.
Well done Mr Dunne. Watch out though, I am still looking at your stance on other issues and until you change your position on those, people like me will not go away.

Would it be possible to turn back the clock?

I suspect that most of you will call me an economic moron and a nostalgic twit, but I am way past giving a hoot about such easily thrown rebukes. That’s one good thing about getting older. I want those of you with a memory that goes back to the 1960’s to go back to that time (in your head, because I haven’t been able to find a workable time machine) and think about what we had. Try to keep it realistic and clear the fog from your rose-coloured sun glasses.
The 1960’s represented a time when we had almost full employment and a very robust local manufacturing sector. Names like F and P along with the iconic Crown Lynn were known by everyone. There were many other names that have gone, along with the jobs. We even had cars assembled in NZ and for a while we experimented with a car and a strange looking utility vehicle. That it was a joke doesn’t matter. We were prepared to try almost anything.
All this came at a price of course; nearly everything was expensive, even with some subsidies from the Government. Everything imported had high taxes and some of the prices would have your head reeling, if they were converted into today’s money.
We had to think before we purchased a major item like a TV for instance. There was only one channel and it was in black and white. I well remember our family arriving in Auckland and I had never seen a TV. The poor neighbours had to put up with us watching through the windows until my parents paid an astronomical price for a TV. If you wanted a new car, you had to go on a waiting list and a ‘late model’ trade-in was essential. The colour--- whatever was available. Of course if you had overseas funds, then you didn’t have that problem.
I suppose it came down to meeting your needs rather than your wants. Weekend shopping was years away so if you were lucky, some of the shops were open on Saturday morning. Weekends really were weekends and the family actually had time to do things together.
You know how things have changed---for the better? ---- That’s over to you. Do we return to those times and have a ‘protectionist economy or do we stay with the purely free market version? Other countries continue to subsidise their industries to protect employment and local production. Why do we have to be so pure then? Would the world come to an end if we re-introduced some of the subsidies from the past? I don’t know and the economists will never agree. Do we continue to run down proven industries like the railways and the support structures they need? Take the Gisborne rail link and the workshops that could have built to new electric hardware. Surely there could be a better balance, rather than the gung-ho lowest price approach we now have---read, ‘but it from China,’ a country that is not averse to protectionist policies. I am sure the USA is going to rue the day when they went down the ‘buy it all from China’ policy.
So, is the road we have travelled the right one or are we just going to become a ‘food producer for the rest of the world’? Maybe it is too late to turn back the clock. Maybe I am suffering from ‘future shock,’ a natural affliction for one looking at later years in life.