Plonkers and taxaholics: Letters, 3 June

The Bay of Plenty Times welcomes letters and comments from readers. Below you can read the letters we have published in your newspaper today.
Keep sullen protesters away from Cup delight

There are several disparate groups of protesters planning to disrupt the Rugby World Cup to "alert the world that New Zealand is not squeaky clean".
In a democracy we thankfully have the right to free speech, but could I suggest an overseas holiday for that rag-tag bunch of perennial protesters, Sue Bradford and John Minto, Meredydd Barrar of the Coalition for Social Justice and the unionist representing hotel workers who want a 10 per cent share of room rentals during the Cup.
Their vacation, with AK-47s provided, could be spent in the Gaddafi family compound in Libya - or perhaps any village in Afghanistan.
They would be joined by the delightful Mana Party candidate Annette Sykes, who is very open about the fact that she laughed when she saw "the American capitalists" die on 9/11.
I speak from the experience of living in a low-income family, having been a solo mum raising four children. I worked at two jobs for many of those years but spent a couple of years depending solely on the DPB to care for my child who has some special needs.
However the charming bunch above need to appreciate just how lucky we are here in Godzone, and then the rest of us can enjoy the spectacle that is the Rugby World Cup.
Robin Bishop, Pyes Pa
Aged-care issues
Dementia is a severe and devastating disorder for both the sufferers and their families.

It is important to ensure that the person living with dementia receives quality, accountable services ensuring they have the opportunity to live a good life.
While the topic of aged care can turn into a political football game, with various political parties stating what each one has done, a recent report released (Aged Care Report 2010) details how elderly are not being cared for safely and in a manner that they deserve.
The recent Government Budget may deliver an extra $1 million over four years to look after people living with dementia but this sector has already been unregulated and desperately short-staffed in many areas for a long time.
Increasing the beds does not automatically provide better care.
The aged-care sector is struggling to meet the growing needs of an ageing population.
The result is that many older New Zealanders are receiving substandard care in an industry that does not require regulated staff-specific training and pays low wages, therefore losing important skilled staff in pursuit of adequate income.
Our politicians make sure their needs are met; our elderly deserve the same consideration. (Abridged.)
G. McIsaac, Ohauiti
Carbon taxaholics
Coal produces the cheapest electricity in most areas of the world, especially in the modern, clean power stations being constructed in Asia and India.
Many of these plants will rely on imports of high-quality Australian coal.
The aim of the carbon tax is to increase the domestic cost of carbon fuels such as coal, oil products and gas, thus forcing Australian industry and consumers to use high-cost, non-carbon energy options such as wind and solar power.
The carbon taxaholics are thus asking Australian industry and exporters to use expensive power while we supply cheap power to their competitors.
This policy of cheap energy for foreigners but not for locals is a path signposted with promises of paradise, but paved with poverty for those forced to tread there.
Viv Forbes, Qld, Australia

Teen plonkers
I must be a plonker because I wholeheartedly disagree with Richard Moore's comments about "planking" (May 31).
I agree that lying down is harmless and some fads for young people are fun.
The concern I have is, where does fun stop and harm begin?
There is plenty of research available that points to the adolescent brain being underdeveloped being a major reason why young people take risks without thinking about the consequences (take note of Nigel Latta's "politically incorrect" parenting show).
The debate is not about planking but about "risk-taking behaviour" amongst young people.
I believe Richard owes an apology to the parents of the young person in Australia who died from planking.
Tell his parents that they're "plonkers".
What appears to be "harmless behaviour" can escalate easily.
I believe the craze of planking is meant to dare young people into taking the most outrageous photos of lying down.
Wake up, New Zealand, and take the lives of our young people seriously.
Sometimes young people need protecting from themselves.
The Government is due to release a report about adolescent behaviour.
I look forward to reading it.
Richard Brown, Omokoroa
Text Views
* Planking. Always thought national were plankers just stay in the same spot dont move and do nothing. useless plonkers.
* Now that the councillors have changed their minds on sirens & the Brookfield Park does that mean that our rate rise will be greater than the proposed 10.40% ??
* Sirens - common sense at last! Victory to the community who had to force our leaders' heads onto a siren pole. Tim Short.
* Exotic diseases. MAF is useless. PSA and verroa mite so far. Pork farmers having to fight to keep imports from countries with nasty diseases out. Other countries are far more strict about what is allowed over their borders. So stupid.
* Very happy that sydenham park will become a community treasure. thanks to all who made it happen. cecily
* Sadly sirens will be a waste of money. Our city has not been designed for a quick exit. Can just see the road rage with everyone trying to leave.
* At last, free parking downtown. Will be great to shop for several hours without having to worry about the meter at the other end of town!
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- Bay of Plenty Times

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