Letter of the week: Caroline Mabry, Glen Eden
Guy Body's cartoon about Trump's mob storming Capitol Hill over his electoral loss made me chuckle. Still, I can't forget how frightening it can be.
I am an ex-American citizen and I have seen this before. When I was 9 years old, the McCarthy era flourished (1940-50s) and the general population was led to believe that the communist menace had infiltrated our democracy.
Many successful people were wrongly accused of undermining our country and their careers ruined, or they were imprisoned.
My father, a university academic at the time, was ordered to report students who had subversive ideas. He refused. Next he had to report a colleague as a communist infiltrator. He refused. We were frightened that my dad might go to jail. We prepared to escape to Canada. Fortunately, McCarthy was confronted at Supreme Court Hearings, his falsehoods revealed and we were safe.
Your editorial (Weekend Herald, January 9) described the above situations perfectly; ''The nation that fancied itself as a beacon of democracy has unleashed anti-democratic forces on itself.''
Tom Dillane's report (Weekend Herald, January 9) shows at last somebody has recognised Auckland has been cultivating a polluted swamp within a mile of Queen St for a century.
Hobson Bay was an anchorage for sailing ships with its yellow sand borders kept clean by the action of waves twice every day. Beach Rd was an appropriate name. Children could paddle from Victoria Ave to Ōrākei Pt.
Tāmaki Drive and the rail line changed everything - wave movement ceased. Pollution and rubbish from the roads and surfaces of Remuera, Newmarket and Parnell have been contained within the bay ever since.
The area will never return to its original state, but 100m away - in Ōrākei Basin - we can see what would be a great improvement.
With the rail embankment completed and flush gates fitted beneath the road bridge at Parnell Pool it would create a six-day-a-week pool with a rapid flush.
Such an embankment would also be able to be used to protect Beach and Portland Roads, two of those most threatened by the effects of higher tides due in the near future.
John E. Binsley, Parnell.
Hobson Bay beach severely polluted by residents' own effluent (Weekend Herald, January 9) is a case of literally you-know-whatting in your own nest. Half a million spent on "their" beach and now they want more priority. It irks them that so much was spent and they can't use it.
We all feel that way. What is so special about their patch? Milford Beach is also polluted on a regular basis.
Nick Vigar and Safeswim need to "sort out" bigger beaches first and promising to sort out Hobson Bay stinks. The wealthy have their own pools, let alone their own beach.
Steve Russell, Hillcrest.
Your article (Weekend Herald, Janaury 9) about "what's behind place names" can have a simple solution.
Coming from the northern part of the Netherlands from the province of Friesland, we have a different language from the Dutch. Therefore, our place names signs are in both names, the Dutch and the Friesian and everyone can read it. Problem fixed, everyone happy.
D. Hoekstra, Henderson.
Last Saturday's paper (Weekend Herald, January 9) first perplexed me and then infuriated me - well I guess it stirs up the grey matter.
I was perplexed by the headline "Festival drugs shock".
Seemingly, some party drugs were adulterated with toxic ingredients which did several people a power of no good - but why would this come as a shock? What else would you expect to happen?
I was infuriated to read a suggestion that the Government (i.e. the taxpayers) should pay for more testing of these drugs - why? Those who are prepared to take such substances - fully aware of the risks entailed - must also accept the consequences for their own actions.
I see no justification for involving taxpayers - it is simply not their responsibility.
Geraldine Taylor, Remuera.
The small article about Auckland's proposed water rates rises (Weekend Herald, January 9) should have been much more prominently displayed. The proposed increases by Watercare over 10 years amount to more than 100 per cent when compounded. This is three times a 3 per cent rate of inflation.
I simply cannot see how pensioners and those on the minimum wage can absorb these increases.
Auckland's water storage and reticulation are in dire need of repair, but I agree with Mayor Goff that the costs need to be spread over a much longer period. A 3 per cent increase each year for 25 years would achieve a similar result.
In New Zealand we opted for continuation of local government control of water to avoid the problems created by private companies overseas such as very high prices, cutting supply to residents in arrears and quality issues. Yet, the problems that beset Watercare and the price hikes are more redolent of a fully privatised water provider than a council-controlled entity.
Chris Bangs, Hillsborough.
A quick word
Trump yelled "fire" in a crowded movie theatre. Robert Myers, Auckland Central.
Just when you are at a loss for words, some bright spark enters the fray to poignantly comment on Youtube: "Due to travel restrictions this year, the US had to organise the coup at home." Rob Buchanan, Kerikeri.
If Chris Liddell values any credibility he believes he has in the world of business and politics, he should resign from Donald Trump's cabinet today to attempt to restore it. Peter Burn, Gulf Harbour.
NZ crayfish exporters have chosen to undermine rather than support our ally and neighbour in their stand against China's threat to our region's sovereignty. J Leighton, Devonport.
Whether playing alone or with others, Donald will always be the winner as he writes his own decided score on his card on every hole. How could he possibly lose? Murray Hunter, Titirangi.
Steven Joyce's opinion piece (Weekend Herald, January 9) will be forever hung on my wall. The only thing Trump did well was sign his name with that wide pen. Peter Henley, Albany.
Passengers wearing face masks on Auckland public transport seems as discretionary as cyclists wearing helmets. Kate Tomson, Waiheke Island.
The news that the UK and South African highly contagious Covid variants have arrived on our shores, albeit contained in MIQ, is very concerning. Winston Churchill made the position clear when he said "The price of freedom is eternal vigilance". Randal Lockie, Rothesay Bay.
Why are Air NZ return fares always higher than the outward leg? Jock Mac Vicar, Hauraki.
Steve Braunias' annual horoscope (Weekend Herald, January 9) contained some sound advice: "prefer darkness and sloth". To which I would add: "Do it for at least one-third of your life." Chris Kiwi, Mt Albert.
I can't believe the senselessness of the anarchists protesting at Parliament. Their behaviour is both ignorant and dangerous. V. Hall, Whangaparāoa.
President Trump encouraged his supporters to fight for their rights and demonstrate in Washington. He never once advocated violence. Tony Molloy, Morrinsville.
Depriving Donald Trump of his Twitter does not take his voice away. He is the POTUS and can call a press conference anytime. Trouble is, the press corp present might question the veracity of his statements. Richard Alspach, Dargaville.
The situation in American politics is actually a triumph for democracy. In spite of Trump's desire to overturn the election result and his obvious dictator-style politics, the Americans will install a newly elected president. J. Hansen , Hastings.