Friday, August 2, 2013

The USA calls for it's embassies to be closed in the Middle-East, because of a 'credible' threat.

I am not disputing for a moment that there may well be a threat, emanating from the activities of Al-Qaeda, but I fully expect our 'Dear Leader, John Key to take full advantage of this scenario to push through the 'Spy Bill,' just when there was a chance that Peter Dunne would change his mind. This important piece of legislation is one that should have the support of majority of the House, not a simple majority, but a significant one. We have seen legislation, introduced from both major parties, shoved through parliament and that is disrespectful to the people of New Zealand. Such laws as proposed under this latest bill are too important to rush. I understand that there are organizations 'out there' who would do us harm and the fact that we so often side with the political ambitions of the USA, place us in a space that is very worrying. I much preferred the stance taken by Helen Clark's Government, whereby we sometimes incurred the wrath of the USA, but we had a voice of our own.
Mr Key, take a moment to reflect on where you are taking us with this bill. Are we going to find out in the future that you came under pressure from your counterparts in Washington to 'conform' to USA policy.?
Mind you, we may well have 'new political masters,'  a fact driven solely by the new world of international trade. I am sure you all can figure out the candidates for that position. Being a small nation at the bottom of the South Pacific is not always comfortable.  

You can go for a 'gay' old time to Russia during the Winter Olympics!

Yes, I could hardly believe me ears when I heard a news reports that Russia is 'suspending' it's anti-gay laws during the Winter Olympics, because it wants an air of tolerance. Pleas tell me I am wrong. Oh, it's true, you say. Gone are the halcyon days of the early era of hope when the 'evil empire' changed and the 'Cold War was over. I bet you are all thrilled with the 'replacement.' At least  we knew what we were dealing with when the 'nuclear clock' was seconds away from planetary Armageddon.
We have seen the steady erosion of hope as Putin changed the law so that he can extend his rule. Tsarisism/Stalinism, call it what you like; it all amounts to the same result---a Russia hell-bent on rushing back to the past. What is it about this proud nation, that it seems to need these bully boys? Maybe  the history is such that it produces some of the best music, art and literature the world has ever seen. Maybe this pain is the driving force of culture.
Now take this latest move and try to put I into perspective. I can only wonder at what will happen after this temporary era of sensitivity and understanding comes to an end after the visitors leave. Will it be somewhat like those childhood experience's many of us can relate to whereby our parents smiled as we misbehaved during visits from relations and friends, but the 'shit hit the fan' once they left. Retribution for misdemeanours was swift and memorable. Is that what the Russian gay/lesbian, transgender community can look forward to; a return to the heavy-handed actions from a police and a rapid return to the 'closet.' What a farce and sad indictment on the free-sprit of those who care in Russia. Perhaps however there is another possibility. Once the genie in the bottle has a sniff of what 'could be,' the powers that be will see that there is no threat; if anything Russian culture embark on an even stronger direction. Way to go Putin, 'girl friend!'
Just imagine what it will be like in the Middle East, when the World Cup is held in a few years. Maybe the Imams will give special dispensation for 'gay' behaviour! Yeah right!


Before we give China a hard time we need ot look in our own backyard.

The latest scare re possible contamination of yet more of Fonterra's products rams home the necessity to maintain vigilance when it comes to our production methods. Many criticisms have been aimed at China; for good reason given the many reports of pollution and shady  processes, not the least being the corruption that widely exists. If we make these claims then we need to sure that we are squeaky clean. New Zealand's reputation as being 'clean and green,' comes under fire each time we have even a small 'blimp' re the safety of our exports. To give Fonterra credit, they did act quickly re the latest slip-up and they seem to have identified the cause of the 'scare' and notified anyone affected.
This all brings into question, Government cuts in areas that contribute to research and safety, be it at our borders or in the whole chain that works alongside making New Zealand one of the safest places to source 'food' from. We must never take shortcuts and our 'standards' need to be transparent and open to question. Hopefully Fonterra has learnt yet more from this event! China is a reality for us---they are our biggest source of trade and we must find ways to mesh in with their huge economy in ways that reflect respect and mirroring good practise.  

Sample of Roskill. Coming to a Kindle near you, soon!

Roskill has almost reached upload to Kindle stage. We are awaiting a few more little production issues and then we will be all go. If you have a tablet with an AP that can download Kindle, then you too will be able to buy my book cheaply. Mary Egan and her team have done a great job along with some skilled editing by Stephen Stratford. The Picture is in low resolution and will look better and 'tighter' once downloaded and will not have 'stock photo' on it. I shall let you know the link once all is ready. Thanks to the support I have received from all the ex-Tangaroa College students (going way back!) and my friends from James Cook High. There's even some from Western Springs College.
Look out for the next book, 'Talk To Me.' That is in editing now.