Saturday, August 31, 2013

Another 'voice' on the block. Welcome to New Zealand, Aljazeera.

We have seen Aljazeera in NZ before, but not full time. I was pleased to see the return with Aljazeera having it's own slot on Sky TV. I shall enjoy another 'slant' on the news but will subject it to the same distain have for other outlets when I perceive any bias. Now that we have Aljazeera, along with the usual same old bastions of our news intake, perhaps we can get some balance. That will mean I will need to a lot of channel-surfing,' a habit that will little for the 'peace' in my little house. Oh well, I shall be gentle in that the TV won't be tuned to the 'news' all the time. Hell, I may even watch that crazy old lady, Joan Rivers with her extremely 'informative' Fashion Police, a programme that every aspiring wannabe whatever should watch. Be warned however, your definition of 'balance' will be severely challenged to say nothing of your sensitivities on 'other matters pertinent to being 'informed.' Maybe Aljazeera will add her to their team of resolute reporters!

'I had a dream,' seems to be right up there at the moment. Well, I had one too---The Middle East was peaceful!

Yes, my dream was magnificent! I dreamed that Syria, Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia and the rest of the Middle East were lands where children were safe and women had access to education, free to vote, uninfluenced by stand over tactics, free to follow their dreams. The skies were clear of jets  seeking them out as targets, the streets were busy and colourful, filled with people going about their daily lives, knowing that the police were not corrupt and that there were no suicide bombers ready to throw bombs into mosques or other places of worship. Indeed such places were havens of peace where people gathered to listen to peaceful words from leaders who had no other agenda than love, and spreading the words of the 'books,' not 'forcing the listeners or extoling them to acts of violence against others.
The army did not act against its own people and the leaders knew that they must listen to and include all people in the life of the nations. No one country dominated, although on the horizon there was always the spectre of 'greater powers,' one in particular that still wished to garner influence. The nations did not care because they were sure in their own direction and that the august United Nations curtailed the worst aspects of those 'predator powers.'
THEN I WOKE UP TO REALITY. The news was full of suffering, not just in the Middle East, but the bombs continued to be thrown and children killed while 'greater powers,' stood by in disunity. Sure, one nation still took it upon itself to act, with no plan, no vision and continued to do its thing. I SHALL CONTINUE TO HOPE. HISTORY DOES HAVE A WAY OF SHRUGGING OFF HATE, INTOLERANCE AND EVIL. Dream with me!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Trade Me is much more than just buying and selling.

A few days ago I won a lovely old Crown Lynn tea set. I knew the pattern well, having had countless cups of teas and instant coffee (obviously, well before the days of the new-age coffee machines I so love now) many years ago when Crown Lynn was a flourishing local industry. The tea pot however is a 'hard to find' item so I was quite happy to travel to Huntly (Huntly is a town about 50 minutes drive south of Auckland) to pick up the set. Once I had arranged the pick up I was surprised to see that being near Huntly was a fairly loose description. I received a detailed set of instructions as to how I could find the place of 'pick-up.' Some Trade Me fans would have thrown their hands up in horror at the prospect of having to endure such a journey, but not me. I decided to make the day one of adventure. I had never travelled down this particular road and the thought of 'new territory was enough to tempt me into my 'adventure.'
Saturday dawned bright and cool and after taking Perdy for a quick run in a park near the city, where I of course picked up all of her poos, I gathered together my usual travelling companions. Perdy was ensconced on her new favourite sleeping pad and seemed quite happy to be with us; much better than staying home alone.
As we travelled south down State Highway One, we read our instructions and made the necessary adjustment to the GPS on one of the cell phones. We were curious to see if the 'out of the way' destination would show up on the phone. Once we were told to turn left (by the GPS) at Ohinewai, we headed east, travelling through green and vibrant farmland. The distant hills beckoned, inspiring some slightly 'unPC' comments about going into 'deliverance' territory. My little Hyundai Gezt was a delight to drive down the country roads and even when we hit a metaled section (that out soon to be gracious hostess had told us about) there were no surprises.
We entered a wide valley, flanked by cows munching away on early spring grass and crops. Memories from my childhood on the farm in Taranaki flooded back and I am sure my sister felt the same. The GPS delivered us right to the gate which informed us that we were under video surveillance. Maybe they have a problem with undesirables stealing cows or sheep--who knows. At this stage the GPS became confused but our backup instructions that I had printed told us we were right on track.
My Gezt bounced along the long drive and I had visions of the low slung body grounding out so I drove slightly off centre. God knows where I got that little technique from; obviously a throwback to younger days! I pulled the car up to an old house and a mature looking gentleman waved us into the back yard.
We felt welcome immediately and once introductions were complete we were invited into the house for a cup of tea. We seemed to connect and time flashed by. I am not going to rave on about country folk welcoming city people into their hearts  but maybe I should. The lady of the house and then one to whom I was doing business with was in a wheel chair after an operation. That did nothing to impeded her looking after us. The conversations were those of people who love to 'look back' in time and the similarities were many, between our two worlds. The couple and their clever son were delightful company and I will be putting up on my website a link to the 'rustic recycled pallet wooden furniture he is making. He really deserves to get this product out there and I can't wait to assit him with this.
Not only did we leave with my intended purchase, but we also brought some little, what I wrongly called 'key bling bling.' I know not what they are really called but they are artistic and made with love. Once I get the furniture on my site, I shall also ask if I can show the little items as well.
 I didn't want to leave in a hurry, but other tasks beckoned. We waved goodbye, hoping  that we can meet these lovely people again. Yes, Trade Me is far more than buying and selling; it is a chance to meet people and what is more important than that!

Obama bitch slapped by the poms. Maybe he won't get his own way now!

Obama is now pushing for a face-saving 'limited response to Syria. What a total F---up. He is determined to 'protect American interest' and somehow punish those who launched to chemical weapons. This from a president who stands at the pinnacle of progress for black Americans. What a load of twaddle. I am changing my mind about Obama. Like most people in  power he has been corrupted by the usual crap that goes with it. Thank God the USA has a sensible law allowing only two terms, but then again; who is to say that what comes next will be any better. The USA's belief that it is the 'world policeman,' meaning that it feels it has the right to go anywhere, do anything in order to maintain dominance over the rest of the world. Fortunately there are other 'wannabe's in waiting. Who---make up your own minds;. it all comes down to protecting the power of cartels, whoever and whatever country they come from. that is the real meaning of globalisation---'trickle up.' 

VIDEO: Beagles see sun and grass for the first time - Video - Keep up with Newstalk ZB

VIDEO: Beagles see sun and grass for the first time - Video - Keep up with Newstalk ZB

What more do you need---please support efforts to ban testing on dogs just so that PEOPLE CAN USE PARTY DRUGS 'SAFELY.'

KIWIS in the UK---go to my link

Come on Brits. Join me, read me. I know there's heaps of you over there, hopefully not permanently. If you want a story from 'home,' then hook onto my site and download ROSKILL. I'm not trying to make you homesick but if I do, grab a Pom and come on home. We need you. I know Christchurch needs your skills. Go to and download the Kindle version of ROSKILL. Haven't got a Kindle. That's OK. USE your tablet

F R U S T R A T I N G ! I know people are downloading ROSKILL but it not showing up on my Kindle stats yet!

Yeah, I guess I am just being impatient, but it's so damned annoying, knowing lots of you have downloaded ROSKILL from the link on my website--- but it still looks like it hasn't sold any. I suspect that is because the stats are only updated infrequently. Please let me know if you have done the deed by emailing me form my website. If you enjoyed the book, I need reviews---urgently as that helps to draw attention to the book. I would also like to know where you are buying the download from. I am almost ready to put TALK TO ME  on too so yes, I shall be pushing that too. Come and help me to spread the message.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Those 'adverts ' that say they can feed 4 people for NZ$15---I can beat that!

I must be feeling pretty upbeat of I can make a claim that I can easily feed a family of 4 for less than NZ$15 and they would enjoy it too! Such feelings must come with the new feeling I have that things are better for me. OK, here goes. I do make an assumption that you have a few little basics in your cupboards and of you haven’t, then aim to get at least some of them each week. Get them form bulk bins as they are cheaper.
What’s on the menu? ----‘Neil’s Lamb meatballs on rice.’
You will need:
About 400gms of minced lamb (mine was $4.50)
Any leftover veggies form the fridge. (I had 5 button mushrooms, and 5 Brussell Sprouts.)
A can of Campbell’s chicken soup. (There are cheaper ones)
Mix the mince with about a cup of cooked rice, one egg and some mixed herbs, salt, garlic and pepper. Form them into little balls. I made 15 from the mixture. Stick them in the fridge while you do then other stuff.
Chop up the veggies, microwave them for 4 minutes and combine with the soup. Place to one side.
Now, fry the meatballs until brown then combine them with the veggies and soup mix. Simmer gently for 10 minutes, stirring to prevent catching.
Serve on Cooked rice; brown stuff if you prefer.
 Total costs for me---about $12. Bloody tasty!

The growing gap between thr rich and poor. TV3's take on it last night.

I was ‘prompted by a FB friend to watch the TV3 programme last night on the ‘Growing gap between rich and poor in NZ.’ I must thank her for reminding us about this very moving and quite frankly, ‘brave’ programme.
The programme summed up a great deal of what I have believed for a long time and then went even further, adding to my feelings of frustration at the continuing erosion of economic power, not just of the poor but of the ‘struggling class.’ It blew away any claims that a ‘trickle down’ effect is best for those of us in the bottom 70%. I would go even further and say that on Auckland and some other bigger cities the struggling class and poor are an even bigger proportion of the population.
The concept of ‘trickle up’ is a powerful concept. Simply put, it is another way of returning increasing amounts of money and wealth to those at the top; friends of the government!
It was enlightening to see that many countries are now turning their back on the policies loosely labelled as ‘Neoliberalism.’  That New Zealand had its advocates (Douglas, Shipley and now Key) just shows us how tightly we are linked to those forces overseas. Indeed NL is a global phenomenon and it continues to hurt those at the bottom and far more than realized in the past.
The concept of a ‘consumerism’  driven society and business models that have as their central position that which is only profit driven cannot deliver what it has so proudly claimed throughput recent history. Indeed even so-called right wing politicians are pondering the efficacy of the ‘free market.’
Of course, those who have the most to gain by keeping to the present way we operate have the most to lose by any ground shift towards a more equal society, or at least one that does not have such glaring gaps. The same people control the media and the means by which we all ‘share in the cake.’ That a company like TV3 or its owners can put up a programme as seen on TV last night, does give me some hope that there are influential people out there, who do have a conscience. Now what we need are politicians who share that alternate view. Which of the three contenders for the Labour Party leadership would fit into this category? The answer to that will provide me with the knowledge I need to cast my vote in the current leadership journey.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

China, you are reading my blogs----great---please continue!

It is so good to see that China is starting to figure in the numbers reading my blogs. I can only hope that they are also downloading my book(s) and that they are passing my website with its link to my book on Kindle (ROSKILL by Neil Coleman). Perhaps they are using Tablets to read them. Either way, thank you for supporting me, China.  Follow the link to the Kindle version of ROSKILL.

Obama, Cameron and Hollande say--'Yes we can.' You idiots!

Most people probably say---'No you mustn't!' What can the West and it's allies in the Gulf Region possibly gain from bombing the Syrian regime in an attempt to 'punish' the Assad Government? I do not agree that China and Russia are objecting for totally valid reason but they do have a point. All the proposed actions will do is add flames to an already dangerous situation. Young American/allies lives will be lost---for nothing other than a 'slap in the face' and a 'hand-up' to a group of 'rebels' who will eventually turn and 'beat up' on its neighbours and make a volatile region even more unsafe, to say nothing of the possibility of allowing yet another country to fall to fundamentalist of the very worst kind. That the West has helped in the spread of this movement cannot be ignored either.
Yes, we must make it clear that chemical weapons are a curse on humanity but please note:  conventional weapons have killed far more in the present debacle. Dead is dead in anyone's language.
The USA and its allies, plus China, Russia and the remainder of the world must put aside their own agendas and work with the UN to find a solution to the problems that keep feeding the rise of the 'extreme.' Unfortunately, the propensity of nations to look only to their own interests; and then only certain sectors within those countries that link beyond nationalism and connect 'globally; that is the true driving force for these terrible events.

My choice keeps changing on me! Is it going to be Shane, David or Grant?

Since posting my last post and adding it to Facebook, I have had a few challenges re my thinking town my way. One aspect of aging for me is that I think I am prepared to reconsider my thoughts about issues of the day as more facts are illuminated. Sometimes, those ‘facts’ are those of others. Now apply this to the dilemma I face re the new leadership of the NZ Labour Party leadership.
On one hand we have David Cunliffe, an able and obviously intelligent man with a strong background in the Labour Party. Some label him as being from the Princess Street Branch, as if that is some sort of ‘strength’ or maybe ‘impediment.’ See what I mean---- it’s all about perception and when the numbers are crunched in an election; one loses votes and attracts, depending on the mass perception of the voting public. IN other words, one person cannot appeal to everyone. Swings and roundabouts I guess.
The next choice is re Grant Robertson, yet another intelligent and effective politician. He has the backing of none other than Titiwhai Harawira (not Hone). I am not so sure that such backing will help him! Don’t go assuming that David has the backing of the ‘Gay’ caucus. Nothing is that simple, given that Louisa Wall has thrown her weight in behind David. Grant is without doubt an excellent debater; absolutely capable of ‘taking it to John Key.’ Will he attract middle New Zealand? Will he lose those voters who cannot countenance a Gay PM? It should not be like this in a perfect world, but---you know the rest! He can most definitely do the job, but that small percentage of voters will not back him because of his sexuality could be enough to lose the election for Labour. I hope and wish that this would not be so.
Finally we have Shane Jones. Once again a small group of New Zealanders will remember the silly scandal re his using a credit card to view motel pawn. If every politician who had accessed a few ‘sites’ at home or elsewhere was ‘exposed’ there may not be a hell of a lot of them left in Parliament. Yeah, I know, you say indignantly, ‘that is not true!’ Yeah right. As the man said, ‘I am not going for the Pope’s position.’ I believe that Shane would be more than a match for John Key or anyone else in the National Party and he is very much in touch with the ‘man and woman on the street.’ He has wit, some may say too much. Once again, don’t assume that he has the backing of the Mari caucus on the Labour Party as we have seen some come out in favour of other candidates.
So where does this leave me--- why I am considering them all and will not divulge my choice until the last moment, Whatever that is, it is open to change as I believe that all three are very much in the run. I am not into putting any of them down; I am merely looking to see who is most likely to deliver Labour the victory it needs next year.

Labour Party leadership---Even I get to vote!

Imagine my delight when I received an email stating that I will be able to cast a vote re the leadership of the Labour Party. Hell, I hardly remember joining the said party. I vaguely remember receiving a visit from my old mate, Phil Goff a few months ago and signing up. My intention was to support Phil as he is an excellent MP to say nothing of the lost chance to lead the Party. He would have been a damned good PM!
OK, put aside history, although we seem never to learn from the lessons that keep repeating themselves and I shall focus on my upcoming decision. Do I follow the endorsements of the Harawira family whereby Titiwhai gave her blessings to Grant Robertson, or do I accept the recommendations of Hone, who gave the nod to Shane Jones? The very fact that they are not united must have raised a few eyebrows, given the attention the media has given to their ‘united’ actions in the past.
Then there is the plethora of opinion on Facebook, some of which is nothing more than ‘babble’ from souls who have an axe to grind and very little political savvy, but once again, who am I to derail such attempts to take part on some sort of collective decision influencing statements? After all, look overseas and try to understand how leaders of other countries end up in power. At least here, we can make fools of ourselves and take part in ‘opinionating’ and genuinely influencing who would be our leaders, without worrying who is looking over our shoulders.
We also have the Party Whips (I have always wondered about that term!) doing their best to keep a ‘level playing field,’ by controlling who and when questions are asked in Question Time in Parliament. Young Chris Hipkins is doing his utmost to make sure that none of the candidates has an advantage. The result of course is that by the time the actual vote is taken, we will have seen very little of how ‘they’ preform in Parliament, so it is going to be the ‘road show’ that gives us some more to go on when making our decisions as ‘Party Members.’ That 40% influence we get is indeed a new factor in the upcoming battle, so we must exercise our rights with attention to the issues and help deliver a candidate who will make a difference.
At this stage, I am neutral and will be garnering as much I formation as I can and try not to be influenced by stupid commentary that emanates from anyone in the future Opposition National Party or their like. I shall also steer clear of some of the rubbish coming from ‘members of my own Party.’ On the day, I shall make my decision and live with the results. Either way, Labour must unite behind the chosen leader or be consigned to another three years in the wilderness!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Cretins---what more can I say about the fools who tried to bring live scorpions into New Zealand?

New Zealand is a lucky country in that we do not have snakes, scorpions, really dangerous spiders, crocodiles and other 'nasties' that many countries have as their 'normal' inhabitants.Tourists can rest assured that they are not going to be harmed by our natural fauna and flora. Yes, there are a few spiders that are mildly annoying and the occasional (only 8 since records began in the 19th Century) fatal shark attack.
When a group of people tried to bring in live scorpions one can only say they are nothing less than traitors to New Zealand's good name. We are indeed lucky that our border control and other officials were able to intercept these creatures. I am of course talking about the scorpions but I guess the same label could be applied to the criminals who attempted the stupid act. I will be happy to read that they have received the maximum 5 years prison or (although I say--'and') NZ$100,000 fine. A clear message must be sent to the fools who did or would bring in 'threats to the New Zealand fauna and flora and hence our good name as a safe destination. I also wonder at the 'thinking' behind these acts of eco-terrorism!

Syria-- a dilema that will not go away and one that can inflame a region.

The West along with a few Middle-eastern nations is about to launch a war on---well who? We all know that events in Syria are ripping apart that nation and the main victims are those who can least defend themselves. The incumbent murderer President is fighting for his very life and his opposition intent on bringing about his end. That is all that is clear.
When one looks at the ‘opposition,’ there are some disturbing factors. Firstly they are not inclusive and the concern is that once they gain power they will be merely puppets for other forces that are lurking on the side-lines. All Syrians will not be represented in any parliamentary body that emerges from the carnage. If the West is involved in setting up such a body, then one only has to look at past military interventions to see the sad results of such moves.
The West cannot impose a ‘western style’ democracy on nations that have no roots in such institutions. They will simply be inflaming an already divisive society. There is a distinct feeling that a ‘third party’ is waiting in the wings for the dust to settle; that organization has possibly been a ‘player’ already and it is not ‘home grown Syrian,’ nor does it have the best interests of Syria as its focus. I mean of course the very organization that is tearing Pakistan, Iraq and Afghanistan apart.
I am not being cynical when I make the claim that the above organization has a master plan that supersedes the wishes of the vast majority of the peoples of the countries I have listed. It is this group that is going to be the main winner in the event of a Western led ‘invasion or intervention in Syria. All they have to do is wait, watch and step in once the ‘dirty work’ has been achieved for them. That the USA, Britain, France and their lackeys do not see this is disturbing to say the least. Dare I say it that even little New Zealand can be drawn in as it has been so many times when the Lion roars.’
I do not necessarily support the stance taken by Russia and China re their opposition to any intervention, but their caution, based as it is on their own political ambitions in the area, should be a word of warning that unless there is clear evidence for a need to intervene and a plan that all agree to, post intervention, then the losers will only be those killed by such actions and of course the people of Syria. Will we never learn from history; recent history?!

Monday, August 26, 2013

I saw the surgeon today!

My visit to the surgeon was a very short one today. Usually I pay $120 but he said, he felt fraudulent taking my money so it was FREE! It seems that he was very pleased and the only thing he wants me to do is drink more water. 'Yes we can,' I said. I won't be seeing him again for another six months. I doubt that I will be losing much more weight. I am actually quite happy with the 40kgs I have lost. Now it's time to up the walking and exercise. I was also thinking that I need to start another book. I had thought that maybe I should write one using my recent journey re bariatric surgery as a base. Then I thought, 'FECK THAT!'  unless I make it a totally un-PC and over the top story. I actually need to generate a lot more sales re my other three books two, before I contemplate spending yet more on other dreams. So, if you want to see a new book, make sure you download ROSKILL.  Just go to my website and follow the link to the Amazon Kindle version. Of course you will need a Kindle or a Tablet to complete the process, which will cost you the princely sum of $US4. My other books, COASTAL YARNS and TALK TO ME will follow soon.

"I will resign if the age for 'Super' goes up," says Mr Key. Really?

Mr Dunne’s ‘flexi-super’ will let Key off the ‘wiggling’ hook! The idea that a part payment for ‘Super’ could be available to those from 60 on seems to have thrown a lifeline to John Key. Remember his statements from recent years about resigning if the ‘pension’ age went up? The roundabout solution as proposed by Peter Dunne (I am not disagreeing with the concept) is a perfect opportunity for John Key to go back on his word and he will manage to sell the idea as one that does not go against his original statement. I shall watch as he wriggles and turns in order to hide from his words. We will see more of the body language he has exhibited in the last year or so as things don’t always go his way. Watch him closely; you too will come to your own conclusions about the real John Key as he squirms his way through the next year. It is fascinating watching a politician, who was so self-assured, dropping his composure as the real questions are put to him. Time is not on his side this time!

If you are stupid enough to pay$NZ7 for one capsicum, then don't bitch about it!

Sometimes I want to be wrong---very wrong, but if reports that people are paying up to $7 for one capsicum are correct then I can only say, ‘more fool them!’ I do not feel sorry for such people. If they really want to have the delights of a fresh, green, red or whatever colour capsicum, then at least get real and go along to the markets like the Avondale or Otara markets and purchase the same item for much less.
For goodness sake---be you a restaurant owner or the ‘cook at home,’ just use whatever brains you have and adapt your menu to reflect seasonal prices and availability. If you have demanding customers, intent on having out of season produce, then they have to pay the price too.
I will on occasion buy Northern Hemisphere fruit but I fully expect to pay more. Actually if truth ‘leadeth’ the charge, haven’t you noticed that some stone fruit from the ‘North’ is often cheaper than our NZ versions, in season? Makes you wonder eh.
So, in conclusion, NZ Herald, don’t waste your space by reporting what is not actually news; it’s just page filling unnecessary crap!

Try this cheap soup---lunch or dinner.

I love making soups and this one is a variation on ones I have put up in the past. The accent is on health and being economical. First off, go and buy some bacon bones (or any shin bone). I usually make gluten-free soups so if that is an aim just don't use the pearl barley or make you own dried soup mix.  This soup made a small pot full (or a smaller slow cooker). It would serve about 4-5 normal adults. Yeah, I know, I am no longer 'normal' when it comes to eating, since the Bariatric surgery.
Here goes. Place the three bacon bones, a cup of soup mix (from the bulk bins) a cup of split peas (lentils are fine too) and any vegetables you have in the fridge. I put in a head of broccoli because it was cheap. Add some pepper, a couple of cloves and top the mixture up with water. Gently simmer for about 2 hours and then once the meat falls off the bone, turn it off and you have lunches for a few days or enough feed the family, with home made scones (Biscuits in the USA and Canada).
Optional extras: I had at tray of tomatoes I had cooked down and frozen as ice cubes. (I put in three) I made them when tomatoes were cheap and in season. I also added a clove of garlic and some dried capsicums that I had dried myself in the summer, using my fan oven on a low setting.
Nourishing, healthy and super cheap. Who needs takeaways?

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Team New Zealand about to go up against the USA (Oracle) for the America's Cup.

Now that New Zealand has won the right to challenge the mighty Oracle Team, lets hope that the racing will take place 'on the water,' not in the damned court rooms like so often has occurred in the past. I am proud to support Team New Zealand! What else can I do? Hell, I live there!
I am not that keen on the huge crafts, catamarans, to be exact. The fact that there were only a few challengers speaks for itself. I would love to see a return to 'real' yachts, like those that we have come to love; crafts that more nations can realistically produce, making the tournament more of a 'fair go,' that very special Kiwi attribute. Having got this far, though, I am sure my compatriots will of their best, knowing that the majority of NZers (minus the killjoys who insist that it is all a waste of money and completely fail to see the economic gains resulting from the exposure of our incredible boat building industry and the flow-on affect for other sectors in our economy) support our team.
Go Kiwis!

91,000 hits now---still well away from one million!

I am very pleased to annonce that my blog has now had 91,000 direct hits and that does not count those that access it from Twitter or facebook. My aim is one million! As you know I use my blog to push my books and to discuss issues that interest me. Sometimes I take an angle, that is designed to 'provoke' and to rasie an awareness. I shall keep on writing in the belief that it can only help my writing skills. Check out my website to follow the link to ROSKILL which is now on Amazon kindle. PLease download it and review it.

Read and review and pass on the link!---Please. ROSKILL needs to get 'out there.'

Yes, it is all baoput pushing Roskill now. Just go to Amazon ebooks and search for ROSKILL, BY NEIL COLEMAN and the rest is easy and cheep. I need reviews and of course, sales!  Just go to my link on my website,
Please pass on the link to your networks. This is a new learning curve for me and unless I push it, nothiing happens!  Thanks for actaully reading this blog.

Maybe three names in the mix for Labour leadership?

OK, so far so good in the leadership battle for Labour. Keep it this way. Have your ‘primary style’ round and get it right. The three names (Two conformed as at 7am NZ time) and portably one more to come. Let’s assume that we will have Grant Robertson, Shane Jones and David Cunliffe. Unless there are nay late nominations then we have an interesting battle on our hands. All of them have good qualities and for me no one shines out as being ‘better.’ Each will attract a slightly different backing and all are capable of stitching together an opposition that can take on Key, from the moment they are selected.
If they all follow the protocol that the Conference settled on, then there should be little blood on the floor. The only group that can stuff this up is the party members, bitching in the background and possibly the media who will be looking for an ‘angle,’ in the name of nothing more than their own cause---making money, supported by strong anti-Labour interest groups.
National and its lackeys will of course try to portray the battle as more than it is and will do the utmost to discredit any successful candidate. It is in National’s interest to have this so.
Hold fast, Labour and get this behind and get on with being an effective Government in waiting. If you don’t and you let partisan sector, and personality issues rule, then stay where you are; lagging on the polls and hosting a pack of insecure wannabes in the party membership. Rise above those potential hooks and we will see something good in NZ politics. It is the humane frailties that will derail this journey---if you let them!

Big thanks to all the people who are buying ROSKILL.

It is really frustrating knowing that people are buying (Downloading) ROSKILL, but not knowing how many. I look at the scroll down of EBooks on Amazon, but the numbers are not yet showing up. It looks like no one has brought ROSKILL but I know that's not true because lots of you have been in touch with me and even told me you have reviewed the book. That's OK, because I think that Amazon only update the figures every so often, maybe every 60 days. Once I know the numbers, I shall stick them up on  my blog. Just keep downloading and passing the link to my book (soon to be books!) to your friends who have a Kindle or a reading AP. Go to my website, or search ROSKILL, BY NEIL COLEMAN on Amazon eBooks. Keep [passing on the link. I can only do this by getting the word or asking you to help. NO flash publishing house behind me or some media magnate. It's all about me pushing and you pulling whatever strings you can. Big hugs!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Hell's Pizza, Beerescourt, Hamilton. Great for our familly reunion.

I had a great day in Hamilton, at our family reunion. We had decided that we wanted a hassle-free day so we chose some Hell's Pizza. We pre-ordered three gluten-free large pizzas. When I picked them up  the friendly manager threw in a complimentary gluten-free garlic bread. Sure Hell's pizzas are a bit more expensive than other outlets, but the product is damned good. (The gluten-free option is of course dearer) I thoroughly enjoyed my tiny serving but didn't feel I was missing out. Post bariatric surgery means that I can't eat much of anything, but the quality of the pizza made up for that. My family also enjoyed their pizzas.
Vinny, the manager made us feel welcome. We know where to get our pizzas in Hamilton now.
Good luck to my niece, Kendyl and her partner, Jason. Make the best of your big OE! Keep in touch,

Friday, August 23, 2013

Here's your chance, Labour. You must make this process open and clean!

So far, Labour hasn't jumped headlong into the personality driven debacles we have witnessed in the past. The rule change made at the last conference could well work in the party's favour, if only the candidates, and equally, their supporters keep to the 'plan.' One only needed to go to Facebook in the past and read the pathetically emotionally charged comments from various supporters, to know that the opposing Governing party  would be jumping with joy. It was a spectacle in itself, reading those statements. What is sad is that these very people expected the public to take the 'battle for the leadership' of the Labour Party seriously, when all they were contributing was a sense that Labour could never get its act together.
OK, enough said on that subject. Now, lets look forward to, and even enjoy the upcoming round of the 'primary-like' events and observe the process of electing a new leader. The 'code of conduct,' should be stuck to rigorously and any candidate veering from it, suffer the consequences.
So far, I have not indicated a preference for any of the possible candidates, because this time, I believe that the process will deliver us someone capable of galvanizing the party into achieving the 'main goal' of giving us a Government that will listen to the people of NZ. Yes, we all know that a certain arrogance can creep in, but have we not learnt enough from past experience to keep pressure on them to keep them honest?
For all of those passionate people, lining up behind their preferred candidate, you too have a part to play; by staying within reasonable bounds and not inflaming the situation. If you do that, you are delivering New Zealand into another three years of the Key-led Government. That is what is at stake-simple!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Air New Zealand to terminate 180 skilled jobs. The cost is a serious loss of NZ skills.

Yes it is a tough world in the airline industry. Yes the New Zealand dollar is high, making it extremely difficult for NZ to compete on a number of areas. But are we to keep haemorrhaging skilled workers, all in the name of profit? Call me naïve and I will accept that label, but can we not see the bigger picture; a future where New Zealand has the necessary skill-pool of workers in order to hold to the claim that we are a modern productive nation with a highly skilled workforce?
There have been many examples of late, re the loss of skilled jobs to outsourcing and the like. The airline industry is but one of them. The money crunchers claim that we cannot compete with lower overseas businesses. It may also be a matter of scale. If we accept that the playing field is not level, then we have to make some hard decisions. New Zealand prides itself on the fact that we do not subsidise our industrial base, like other countries do. As a result we have become extremely competitive at producing what the world desires in a narrow range of products, exemplified primarily by those producers in the agricultural and other primary industries.
We have seen the loss of a broad base in our industrial sector. Is this trend going to continue until we are nothing more than a ‘food basket’ for the world? OK, if the jobs were there in the cities and if the wages and salaries were high. The fact is that this is not so. New Zealand is losing much of what we had built up over the past century; some of it in the name of economic and political policy. As a nation we face some hard choices. Do we carry on down the journey we have been on for a few decades and enjoy the cheap products or do we look at the bigger picture of a nation that looks after all of its citizens, even if that means having to pay more for those daily ‘needs and wants?’
Can we turn back the clock or have we come too far? Are we now merely a nation that responds to the needs of larger industrial conglomerates, many of which are far bigger than nation states? Can we work for a better future for New Zealanders and yet still engage in the world economic order; one that cares little for the needs of the ordinary New Zealander. It will take brave politicians to challenge this ‘new order.’ Somehow, I do not see such individuals in the present government and to a large degree in those who ‘would be Government.’ Those who know what I am portraying are unfortunately in the minority simply because the vast majority do not see beyond ‘getting though the current week.’ Understandable, yet very worrying. The Air New Zealand example is just the tip of the massive iceberg heading our way.

Will the Labour Party show the same dignity we have witnessed from David Shearer?

We would be hard pressed to find anyone believing that David Shearer was anything but ‘a gentleman’ in terms of how he has acted and conducted himself since attaining the top job for the Labour Party. Even his opponents grudgingly admit that, although some of them were a little more forthcoming with the politico-babble in Parliament yesterday, just to score pathetic barbs aimed more at the party than at David himself.
David has gone and now the real test begins. The last 20 months have been a disaster for Labour, mainly because they could not consistently galvanise their efforts to support David and the direction of the party. The writing was on the wall and individuals behind the scene have probably been preparing for the events we witnessed yesterday for quite some time. That David recognized this says a lot about him as a person. He has put the party before his own personal ambitions and done the right thing.
Now the party has a chance to implement the changes around leadership formation and act in a manner that we have rarely seen. The sharing of voting rights between party members, MPs and union affiliates  means that a process can now be put in motion, leading to more open debate and less of that ‘backroom’ rubbish that has so often led to a ‘winner’ in name only. If Labour gets this right and demonstrates that it is capable of conducting a dignified leadership transition, the public may start to believe that they can lead NZ again. If personal agendas can be put aside or at least made secondary to the overall purpose of the party, then there is hope. The only factor that will work against this is that very human desire---- to win, at all costs. Labour----this time get it right---for the sake of New Zealand!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

David Shearer steps down. Sad---but perhaps the best. Now what?

It came as no surprise today that David Shearer stepped down as Leader of the Opposition Labour Party. Very few people would have said that David is not a ‘good and honest man,’ but many may have thought that he didn’t have that ‘killer instinct’ that a leader of a party should have, especially when confronted with the likes (I almost said lies!) of John Key. Labour needs a person to lead who can build on the work of David and bring the party together to be ‘Government in waiting,’ one that we can believe in.
The next few days are a ‘make or break’ time for Labour. If they stuff up the leadership transition, they will consign themselves to the ‘wastelands of politics.’ Now is not the time for nasty scheming. The selection process needs to be transparent and processed with dignity. I am not going to suggest who should follow David. There are quite a few candidates in waiting, some obvious and others, perhaps a little in the shadows.
If Labour gets this right and support for the new leader is widespread, then Labour has a real chance to bring about a brighter future for all of NZ; a future that is not based on divisive politics and the rule of a party that does not listen. Surely Labour has learnt a lesson from past leadership struggles. Will they now forge ahead and bring back one thing New Zealanders all crave for----Hope?!

Please drive us safely, bus drivers!

If today’s report in the NZ Herald is to believed then we should keep a careful watch on the bus drivers who are taking our lives in their hands. That ‘some’ of them are said to be texting or reading documents while they are driving is disturbing to say the least. One would expect more of them; after all they are supposed to be professional drivers, not the dopey people we see texting and god knows what else driving cars. I am sure we have all seen examples of plain stupidity and outright dangerous driving from our fellow car drivers. Perhaps some of us are flushed with guilt as we read this as we recall those times we have sneaked a look at our cell phones or worse, answered the damn things.
At a time when the ‘authorities’ are extolling us to take public transport in order to ‘save the planet’ and avoid unnecessary expenditure on massive motorway extensions, one would think that we jump on a bus and expect total safety in the way we are bussed about town. Sure, bus drivers are human and can be subjected to the same temptations as the rest of us, but the difference is that they hold the lives of far more people I their capable hands.
So Mr and Ms bus drivers; please be careful and keep that trust you have built up with us over the years and may your numbers increase as more of us take up the services you provide and that indeed more of us contemplate making your acquaintances as we approach that magic time in which we can take advantage of the wonderful ‘Gold Card.’ (For my dear overseas readers, we have free public transport in our cities for those over 65!)

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

USA---get a taste of a New Zealand story!

My largest number of readers by far is from the USA. I therefore make a play to get you to download 'Roskill,' my book that is now on Amazon Kindle. You can get it for the paltry sum of $US4 and for that you get a page turning story of a family ion crisis. This family could be in any city or town in the USA. Yes, it happens to be in New Zealand but I am sure that the USA faces the same issue we do in New Zealand. What happens when a parent enters the dangerous world of 'P'? You call it other names, maybe 'ICE' but certainly methamphetamine. Families are torn apart in NZ and the USA. What do you tell your children as you watch you partner self-destruct before your eyes?
What do the teenage children think as they watch their father slowly pull away from the family? 'Do as we say,' or 'Do as we do?'
The story is one of hope however as family members find their own way to cope. It is a story of courage as hard decisions are made, despite the grim plot. There are lots of laughs. The culmination will have you crying one second and then laughing until it hurts.
Go to and click on the Bookstore page to follow the link for the download. Read it and review it. Please pass the link on to your friends and family. If you have a reading AP on your IPhone or Tablet, that will work too.
Thanks, folks.

Amazon ebooks---go look for Roskill.

Yes, go look for Roskill on the Amazon site. Just search the ebooks (Kindle version). Search Roskill by Neil Coleman. Download it, read it and review it. Pass on the link and help me that way. I will keep you posted as to how the book is going.   Go to this site and to Bookstore and follow the link

Australian election---Yawn!

I think our Aussie cousin are waking up each day, a little more bored with the choices they have re the upcoming election. For a short time there, it seemed that Kevin was going to bring a bit of relief into the race, but the electorate has quickly found out that he the same old Kevin they used to know. Then on the other hand, thye get to witness Tony making embarassing  (but bloody funny) gaffes. Put the two together and I hear that there is a movement to emulate the Boat people, but this time made up of Aussies wnating to flee the bredom of the Aussie elections. I hear that some have even become 'wannabe gays' in order to come to NZ for  a marriage ceremony. Of course being the welcoming people we are, then I say, come on over my frineds. You may even decide to stay. I shall arnage for the navy to assist in the relocation so that you can arrive in comfort and safety. NO leaky boats for you---ooops, hang on. I did say the NZ navy. Maybe that's a bit too mucvh to ask for. OH well, I hope you don;t get driven to desperation and seek out other palliatives to your boredom. Just chuck anothoer prawn on the barbie mates!
Yeah, nah, I didnt speel check this one. Had to give you something to do other than listen to Tony and Kevin!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Apparently, this is what I ate for dinner tonight!

Silly question? Not really---the 'dogfruit' was delicious, cooked Indonesian style. I thought I was eating potatoes in a rich gravy. No, it was the vegetable described below. That is why I always eat first then ask what the hell it was later. If I had read the bottom part, maybe I would have had second thoughts. So far I am still alive. without complications. 

Archidendron pauciflorum, commonly known as Jengkol, Dogfruit, or Jering is a species of flowering tree in the pea family, Fabaceae, that is native to Southeast Asia. Despite its strong smell, the beans are a popular food in Indonesia, and also consumed in Malaysia (where they are known as jering), Myanmar (where they are called da nyin thee), and in Southern Thailand, where they are called luk-nieng or luk neang.[1] The large brown legumes are very popular and cooked as satay or curry, especially rendang, in Indonesia. In Burmese cuisine, the da nyin thee is either roasted or boiled, and often eaten along with a pickled fish sauce (Ngapi yay) on steamed rice.
The beans are mildly toxic due to the presence of djenkolic acid, an amino acid, which causes djenkolism (jengkol bean poisoning). Symptoms include spasmodic pain, gout, urinary obstruction, and acute renal failure.[2] The condition mainly affects men, and is not determined by how the beans are prepared. Individuals can consume the beans on multiple occasions without incident, to develop renal failure on another occasion.[3]

References[edit source | edit]

The belt that wouldn't fit! Do I make two?

When I first started this downsizing ‘journey, I had one belt that fitted me. Indeed, every few months I had to add another hole to accommodate my ever-increasing girth. I won’t even try to describe how I felt at that time.
Now, nearly 5 months on, I am still adding holes to my belt(s) but at the other end. I suspect that I now have some belts that more holes than anyone else, catering for all possible sizes. I must make sure that they are donated to a ‘museum of dieting or downsizing’ as an example of ‘what was’ and ‘what can be.’ Of course, I am not on a diet as such and I am happily progressing with my new direction. We took the picture at work today and I came to the decision that just maybe, I should buy a trendy new belt.
Honestly, the belt almost goes around me twice now. I have started to settle on my new weight; one that is very OK for me. Having lost almost 40 kilos, I think I can now look to maintaining that and just increasing my fitness. I think that Party, my jack Russell will play a big part in that. Any regrets? Absolutely NOT!   

Let Mubarak back into the mix if you really wnat to see Egypt self-destruct!

If the powers that be (read, 'the military) release ex-President Mubarak, then all hell will break loose in Egypt. Is that what the present Governmnet wants; a complete breakdown in Egyptian sicieity, one that will allow the military to do as they wish, much like they did under former presidnets. All we need now, in my cynical opinion is for ther to be another Arab-Israeli war. Afterall, is this not about consolidating power, back into the hands of those who have always ruled in this ancient country. War is a tool that is age-old. Don't let this criminal out. Eygpt deserves so much more and I don't mean a 'Morsi!'

3 races and no real winner so far in America's Cup

What's thepoint of this fiasco? Three races and so far one of the boats has pulled out through gear failure. Bring back the good old days of old fashioned (yes, with state of the art technology!) boats. OH, drop the bullshit off the water though!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Perdy gave me that 'I wanna smack my child,' in the supermarket feeling today!

After work today, I took Perdy down to the park at Lynfiled. It is not an 'off-the-leash' area, but I do let her go over the far side of the field and she chases the ball until she is stuffed. Everything went well for a while and she chased a few seagulls and magpies just to add variation.  She seemed to be in a particularly 'vibrant' mood and after abut 30 minutes we headed back to the car park, where from past experiences she has always behaved and jumped into the back seat and off we go.
Oh no, she seemed to sense the presence of some unknown 'beastie' in the bushes not far from where we were parked. Off she ran and after a few seconds set up a manic barking. I know that sound. It cried out 'cat!' I just knew I was in for a hard time. Sure enough, after I had crashed my way through the dense undergrowth (I use that description to magnify what was about to come!) I came upon a scene that held no promise of a peaceful end to my afternoon.
A brown possum-coloured cat was perched way up in the tree, looking down disdainfully at my rabid pooch. (I know, another total over-the-top description, but hell, I'm on a roll, brought on by my 'remembered frustration.) I tried to keep calm, as I was not alone. NO, a guy was standing by his car, maybe rolling a joint. He certainly gave me the impression that I was intruding on his 'pastime.' I decided to ignore him and I attempted to ask Perdy nicely to accompany me to the car.
She cast a backward glance over her shoulders as if to say, 'Feck off---can't you see I'm busy!'
She completely ignored me. My voice became more strident and my language more colourful.
'Get in the fucking car you little shit!' I said uselessly. I imagined being still in the park, after they had shut the gates for the night. That thought gave me reason to increase the level of my 'directive language,' all to no avail. In an attempt to draw her way I threw (gently of course) some dry sticks I her direction and if one of them had connected, I doubt that I would have been consumed with guilt. Man, I will never be condescending in my attitude when I see parents trying to clam (Yes I meant clam, not calm) a screaming kid in a supermarket, ever again!
Perdy continued to avoid me and to jump up about two metres up the tree trunk. The cat just looked down and gave me a distinct impression that it would gladly pee on Perdy if it could!
I returned to my car and started the engine. No luck. That usually works down at the bay in Onehunga, but then again, cats don't tend to frequent that dog-in festered place.
I tried another ploy. I grabbed the ball and thrower and when she popped her head out of the bushes, I threw the ball across the car park. She gave chase, returning it to me. She kept glancing back towards the tree and I threw the ball way out onto the sports field. She followed and we began a game a dog and mouse. Yes, I made that up, because even as I write this while Perdy sits CALMLY and watching the rain fall on the deck, I shudder at what could have been even worse.
My salvation came in the form of a beautiful black Labrador/Alsatian-cross. The friendly owner could see what was driving me spare and let his ten month old puppy go. She chased Perdy who turned on her to discipline her. The owner was delighted. I well remember other dogs doing the same for her. Finally, while Perdy was telling off the gorgeous doggie, I managed to grab her tail. I then got her leash attached and that was the end of Perdy's manic run. I thanked my gallant  knight and made my way towards the car. Once in the back seat I left for home.
Perdy watched the receding treeline, probably  marking the spot where that damned cat frequented. Will I take Perdy there again? Yes, but she will be on her leash way before I get anywhere near the car park. Maybe I am being punished for making up my own 'off -the-leash' rules. I am so sorry, oh great God dog of Jack Russell 'terrorists.'

Love your body day at James Cook High---in the rain!

Every Year the PSSP team (Peer Sexuality Suppport Programme) has a 'LOve YOur BOdy Day.They get the message out there that it's OK to be you, no matter what shape, colour or sexuality you are. Be Proud.
Of course the team got everything ready and were going just fine. Yes, this is Auckland and one minute the sun shines and then it bucketed down. So much for good planning. Take a close look at how the message changed. Blame it on the rain!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Just how much in the way of economic bennefit does New Zealand achive from the America's Cup/

Every time the America's Cup series fills our screens there is debate about how much this spectacle is just a 'rich man's sport. Then there are counter claims about how much money NZ gains from the racing. Who do we believe? There are those who say that  money the Government put in (NZ$30 million) would be better spent on any number of good causes. If that was the simple end-matter of the debate then such claims would be true. What I  would like to see measured is the 'flow-on effect of the AC and how it brings in positive attention to NZ, unlike the Fonterra fiasco. How much does the New Zealand boat building industry gain from the AC? There is little doubt that the range of 'off-shoot employment opportunities have increased their profile and then employed more people. There would also be some sort of tax gain for Government coffers (read 'our coffers) and a possible return on the original 'investment.' Those who refuse to see this, have their heads in the sand and cannot see past their sand-filled eyes. Oops, I am straying from an unbiased condition. Let's see these economic reviews and if the ledger portrays a positive return, then let's have a stop to the bloody winging. I guess one would have to take into account whether NZ wins or losses. If the Cup returns to Auckland and the inflow of the syndicates and tourists takes us back to the heady days of the last 'hosting' of the Cup, then the formerly described wingers would be better to keep their heads submerged (a bit like Team NZ almost did today in SF!) until all is calm again and their view of the world remains that static picture of a boring and grey, never changing one. Damn, have I just hoisted my flag in favour of the  'Ye Olde Mug?'

New Zealand seafood---pure indulgence, and 100% pure.

Yeah I know, New Zealand has come in for a bit of stick lately, mainly because of issues around Fonterra and the 'tainting' of a few batches of baby formula. Of course some countries totally overreacted and that was more about internal politics than anything else. I would still trust NZ produced food way above that produced in the countries who so spoke loudly and banned the NZ product.
Today I partook of a selection of NZ seafood that can only be described as an indulgent treat. For the grand total of NZ$20 I was bale to gently simmer in a particularly fragrant sauce some scallops, prawns and smoked salmon. There were three of us and of course I didn't exactly eat a lot, given my recent  bariatric surgery. I managed to get down 3 scallops, 2 prawns and about a matchbox sized piece of smoked salmon. I cooked some wild rice and made a mixture of mushrooms, Brussels sprouts and cabbage, gently cooked in butter, apple cider vinegar, pepper and some dried herbs. The size of my serving; only a small side plate, simply tiny compared to my 'yesterday' meals.
My neighbour have given me a bottle of NZ Pinot Gris and that was the right mix for our meal.
Now as I listen to the rain falling on the my new deck-shelter, I feel most satisfied. I am sipping coffee and nibbling on one of my soon to be famous cookies. I wish! Call my indulgence a celebration of having lost damned near 40 kilos since I began my latest journey.
PS.  Don't forget to click on the ROSKILL Kindle link from my website and download the book to your kindle or reading AP.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

When is a walk not enough?

If you own a dog, walking is an essential part of having that responsibility. For your peace of mind and the health of you and your canine ‘friend’ you should amble about the hood on a regular basis. The sniffing pooing weeing and God knows what else also gets tended to. It is amazing who you meet; a social benefit for you both. I have many new friends as a result of my ‘walk-plus’ experiences now.
However, if you think that walking is enough then think again, particularly of you have one of those breeds (if you have knowledge of your dog’s lineage, that is) that tends to be totally manic at the best of time, never lone when you don’t exercise the hairy monster. If your dear little pooch happens to be a Jack Russell, then walking is never enough. The little devils reincarnated must be run off their feet in order for you to achieve anything approaching a peaceful evening. If you don’t, then be prepared a night from hell; too bad if you are feeling tired or just feel like staying in.
Jack Russells are born to run. They are a frustrated whippet or a wannabe greyhound. They want to run. They need to run. They must run till they almost drop and even then they will rest momentarily before they are off again. You must not shorten their run in the belief that ‘they have had enough.’ Enough is not on their large vocabulary. They want to run forever. It is only at the stage, when you have run them off their little feet that they will willingly accompany you home to a relatively peaceful evening.
Feel for me folks. I have not ‘run’ Perdy for two days, because I was tired and late home. She achieved new heights in her endeavours to entertain herself and bedevil us! I have been served a warning---‘take me out tonight or suffer the consequences.’ The bitch has spoken!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Father takes 'P' and family takes off! What would you do?

NEWS FLASH---FATHER TAKES ‘p’ and family in turmoil. What will it take to ‘save him?’
Find out by downloading ROSKILL onto your kindle or other reading tablet. Just Google Amazon kindle and search Roskill, by Neil Coleman and the link will come up. Please review the book if you read it. ($4 US)

Australian 'same sex' couples welcome to New Zealand to get married! BUT!

I see that many Australians are coming to New Zealand to take advantage of our new laws legalizing same sex marriage. We welcome them. That we are not welcome in Australia to the point where NZers receive the same benefits of living there that other immigrant groups receive is beside the point. That NZ gives Australians living in NZ the benefits of being a NZer is beside the point. That we are generous to our Australian friends is taken as a right. BUT----please Australia, treat us with the same respect. You can still make your sheep jokes---OK!

Egypt, teeterting on the brink!

Who ever thought up the name ‘Arab Spring’ must have had some sort of weird premonition; one based on fantasy rather than the facts. Having said that, for a while there the world wanted to believe that the people of the vast region we call the Middle-East had a chance to realise their dreams of a better life. How sadly wrong we were in holding those aspirations for them.
Now as we watch events in Egypt unfold we hold our breaths in anticipation of a bloody civil war that could potentially be even worse than the deadly conflagration in Syria.
ON one hand in Egypt we have a ‘military-backed civilian government’ and on the other a deposed, but elected government that was looking like it had more in common with the Taliban than it had with true democratic ideals. For the people of Egypt, the choice, if they ever get one, is not good.
The military has vested interests in backing the present leadership, one brought about a coup, or folding and then possibly having far less influence and more likely a complete purge by an angry Brotherhood-led Government if it returns to power. No words from Obama or any other world leader can be taken as being helpful because they too have barrows to push in this unstable region.
I have painted a sorry picture and there are those out there who will see age-old messages about the events as they unfold. For me, it comes down to the people of the region seeking their own answers, none of which will ‘suit’ the West and increasingly, Russia and the emerging giants of India and China.
IN the meantime, we watch events unfold on the streets of Cairo and conveniently forget the on-going self-destruction of Syria. Perhaps Egypt takes the spotlight of the ‘Butcher of Damascus’ and the opposition that also has plans to cleanse Syria of those who criticise them.
If there was ever a time when the ideals of the UN could be followed, then now is the time, but one lacking in the ‘will.’

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

ASOS---great prices--is it any wonder that NZers chose to buy overseas?

I heard from a colleague at work today that the site above (ASOS) based in the UK has Summer specials (70% off) and I couldn't resist taking a look. I was well satisfied with what I saw. Think about it; their summer specials are our new season offerings at a sale price. Well, a few minutes of trawling through the site had me buying for about NZ$175 items that were originally going for about $500. I had some guilt feelings, for a while, wondering what I was doing to the NZ retailing industry. I know that many shops are doing a bit of a squeeze. Who am I hurting, NZ workers or the big profits of the shareholders? For my own piece of mind, I chose the latter! Go check it out but be sensible---only buy the specials. By the way, the shipping was free. How does the NZ retail scene respond? Maybe they get smarter. My only concern is for the smaller clothing shops, not so much the big chains. Who gains? Maybe just the delivery businesses. I guess it's the same reasoning that I use to sell my books---as a part of Kindle. Go check them out too on Amazon (ROSKILL by Neil Coleman  Kindle version)

Try this link to Roskill---it will take you straight to the download! Happy reading.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Mugabe tells his oppositon to 'go hang themselves.' Hasn't he already sort of done that?

Mugabe is a buffoon but a very dangerous one. His hold on power is such that the people of Zimbabwe will never be able to enjoy real democracy while he and his cohort hold power. The history of his party is one that started with an ideal, but he has gradually stamped his own brand of state fascism come extremism, all with no other aim than retaining power. His southern neighbour is strangely silent on the abuse of power; a fact that does not portend well for the future of that nation.
The Commonwealth is incapable of turning this potentially powerful nation around and the UN sits idly by because that too lacks teeth to call the megalomaniac to heel.
What is sad is that Mugabe is not alone in his relentless ambition. He has built up a system that will carry on once he departs this earth, probably very soon. The 'stolen election' is but a pointer to what will come next--more of the same, but unfortunately after a bloodbath amongst the 'wannabe' Mugabes. When will it end?

I don't care who does it, Labour, National or the Greens, but we have to make our kids safe!

Paula Bennet is coming in for some flak from some quarters because of a proposed law to keep children safe is being called 'draconian.' For the sake of the 50 kids who have died over the last 5 years, we do need to take some sort of action. This time I am behind her at least putting legislation that can be discussed rationally in the select committee in Parliament. The true measure of the legislation will be how effective it is and how widely it is accepted, plus whether the Minister responds to any serious concerns. Bottom line---keep our kids safe, be you Labour National or anyone else and please do not let political manoeuvring and gamesmanship be the driving force. Go for it, Paula, but please listen!" This is the link you need for an Ap to read ROSKILL"   Click on the link. It's the App you need (Free) to download in order to download to read Roskill on a Tablet etc. ROSKILL is available form Amazon Kindle.  Go to the Amazon kindle store and download my book for about $4US. Please send it on to as many as you can. I don't have the big publishing houses behind me, but I do have a very skilled team backing me up now. Thanks folks.

"Roskill" is now available on Amazon Kindle----Time for you to download---just $US4

Finally, ROSKILL is available on Kindle. It has been quite a journey. ROSKILL has been re-edited, slightly shortened and redesigned. It looks better, reads better and just seems 'right.' I would like to thank Stephen Stratford (editing), and Mary Egan and her team for the wonderful designing and finishing.
Get your copy by going to Amazon Kindle and search for my book. ROSKILL by Neil Coleman.  Instead of paying the $35 for hard copy, just spend $4US.
You will need either a Kindle or a Tablet with a reading Ap. Maybe you can find other ways. If you can pass on the message that ROSKILL is out then please do. Better still, buy it and review it. It all helps to bring the big eye of Amazon to my book. Yes, I am unashamedly asking for help.
Once I have a few sales, I shall follow up with TALK TO ME.
Finally, a huge thank you to all the people who have encouraged me; family, friends and contacts.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Auckland's next Mayor will be----- who will make the most outrageous promises?

Auckland has a race on its hands. There are many candidates for the top job of mayor and the candidates are all making promises. These promises range from ‘free and frequent public transport,’ to ‘being a person who represents all people.’ Who can we believe and how possible are their promises?
We have an incumbent mayor who despite earlier criticism of his stance and perceived lack of initiative has done a reasonable job in presenting a vision for the future of NZ’s largest city. Some of those opposing him cry out with the usual, ‘but we can’t afford your grandiose schemes, Mr Mayor,’ but then go on to accuse him of not doing anything about the ever-growing transport problems and lack of infrastructure. They moan about the increase in rates, but we have seen from past elections, that these same people go on to raise rates, because the reality is that if they don’t, Auckland falls further behinds, leaving the problems of water, transport and other issues to be resolved by future ‘leaders.’
I would love to see free and frequent public transport. It would remove the need for ridiculously expensive motorways and free up money for other ‘social projects, like cheaper subsidized housing for those who have no hope of ever gaining a foot on the expensive Auckland housing ladder.
At the very least we need to accept the fact that public transport is never going to make a profit without generous subsidies and unless the ‘Council’ takes over the complete running of all public transport, we are going to need to continue to subsidise any improvement in the age old problem of moving people around the ever-expanding city.
Of course any improvement in the array of problems Auckland faces will need to have support from central government, but that too has its hooks. Politics on a national scale is always going to be the ‘master of events’ in Auckland and Governments of all hues are going to play to their own perceived needs, just to keep their noses in Welle-trough. It is not unusual for our nation’s leaders to play the ‘let’s bash Auckland,’ card, in order to garner votes from the rest of NZ.
So aspiring Auckland mayoral candidates, don’t take us for idiots. Put your ‘causes’ upfront and tell us what is possible, not some pipe dream or a view of something that does not exist. Don’t promise ‘rates cuts,’ then get into the position you seek, only realize that you have promised the impossible!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Spring---you are a 'tease.'

Don't you love it when everybody is feeling 'spring like,' and the daffodils are showing off their gaudy heads? The day dawns bright and mild and the sun takes hold in the sky as if to say, 'I'm here for the long term, so bring lout your washing, plant your seeds and walk your dogs.' The promise of something special is in the air.
Trouble is, it's all a big lie. By the time you have travelled half a kilometre on your way to the park, the heavens open and the wind shakes the car. Do you turn around and head home; knowing that your pooch will attack you at every opportunity for the gall you have shown in going back on your word--'walkies?'
What big shiny liar you can be, spring. On then one hand , you give and on the other you take away. Oh well, I guess its all part of the 'big plan,' making sure we don't take for granted the gift that spring eventually becomes. I'm gonna enjoy you anyway.