Letter of the week: Dushko Bogunovich, Pt Chevalier
The proposal to build a LegendNZ Centre on Wynyard Pt (Weekend Herald, January 25) is worth considering at least because it raises important questions: Do
we need more museums, and what should be done with Wynyard Pt?
The whole world hardly needs more museums. One might cynically say the entire global civilisation is on track to becoming a museum, considering our complacency over the threat of climate catastrophe. However, a museum which addresses precisely this matter might be a worthwhile endeavour.
But we first must overcome our inclination to think provincially and insist on telling the world "our story". Instead, we should tell the world its story, but from our angle. It is our perspective on the world that is unique, not that we have heroes or an indigenous culture - most nations have them. What makes us unique is that Aotearoa was the last major land mass to be discovered and settled by humans. We are uniquely positioned to tell the last chapter, as well as the entire story, of human colonisation of Earth.
And now, as it is dawning on us that humanity has no more room for expansion, what a great question for this museum: where to next? Let's consider a Museum of Humanity's Future.
• A boat above the water: New museum proposed for Auckland waterfront
• Premium - Simon Wilson: Why we need a museum on the waterfront
• New museum in North Hokianga 'will rival any' in Far North
Why do we continue with this silly, 1950s fetish to cover every piece of waterfront, public open space with ugly, architecturally designed, single-use buildings?
Let us finally show some maturity and that we have learned from the past and just leave this well-earned, public open space, environment as "au naturale" for present and future generations to enjoy and embrace.
At the same time, the historical, underutilised, multiple yacht club buildings at Westhaven and environs should be demolished and returned to public open space for all Aucklanders to enjoy and embrace, not just the moneyed, privileged few.
Bruce Tubb, Belmont.
Regarding the damage to people's homes,Z probably caused from a nearby construction project (Weekend Herald, January 25): It seems incredible to me that Steve Pearce from Auckland Council would rely on the vibration report from constructors' experts engaged to do testing?
Would it not have been prudent for council to carry out their own transparent, independent testing, as part of their resource consent monitoring process?
Pam Mayes, Mt Albert.
Thank you for giving voice to residents whose properties have been damaged by construction vibration (Weekend Herald, January 25) as part of your excellent series on insurance.
With cracks halfway down some of the walls of my over 100-year-old home, I was declined twice over the phone by my insurance company. Thankfully they have now accepted my claim, but only after a year of immeasurable stress and deflection.
A council representative has never once visited my property, despite complaints and contact for almost a year. I was surprised that Steve Pearce, manager of regulatory compliance at Auckland Council considered that the developer "demonstrated compliance with the standards set out in the resource consent". Residents found the standards were cherry-picked for the highest level of vibration permissible to bias development; standards specifically for vibration sensitive heritage properties were completely ignored. We also found fault with methodology of testing, as basic as the standards refer only to the buildings resonance and are specific where in the building testing must occur; yet the earth was tested. Residents asked four times for confirmation that the testing equipment was calibrated, and remain ignored.
Once again, thank you for talking truth and being the voice of residents treated like development road-kill.
Russell Hoban, Ponsonby.
John Roughan's article on the Queen's handling of the Harry and Meghan saga was well written but he and others are mistaken when referring to taxpayers funding the royal family.
Constant references to taxpayers is probably one of the triggers that has angered Prince Harry. The Sussex family are mostly funded from the Duchy of Cornwall, the income from the duchy personally belongs to the Duke of Cornwall; i.e. he owns the land and the income derived from farming and industrial leases.
The balance of the Sussex family income comes from the Duchy of Lancaster. The Queen is the "duke" of Lancaster and inherited the land from William the Conqueror in the 11th century.
One of the early Hanoverian kings did a deal with Parliament to swap the income from the duchy for a set amount, the Sovereign Grant, which equates to about one-third of the income derived from the duchy.
The money to upgrade Frogmore House came from the Sovereign Grant. The Sovereign Grant has been doubled in recent months to refurbish Buckingham Palace, now in a poor state of repair.
The trouble with the grant is it has become greatly devalued. The Queen has to beg for funds just to maintain what she inherited.
One would presume that if the monarchy was abolished, the ex-Sovereign would receive the Duchy of Lancaster back into his/her private hands.
Chris Barradale, Parnell
Clark James of New Lynn (Weekend Herald, January 25) hit the nail on the head that all of the world's environmental problems have at the core spiralling consumerism, reliant on more and more imports and exports and - most of all - dependent on burgeoning population growth.
Our politicians who can't see that economic growth, over-population and accelerating climate change are intertwined and, in combination, will inevitably lead us to the next world mass extinction have their heads in the sand.
Regrettably, this Government and the previous one have done nothing to stem the flow and the subsequent housing shortages and declining quality of life for all but the wealthy, which leaves voters with Hobson's Choice at the coming election.
This is why I will pen "none of the above" at the bottom of this year's voting form.
Homeownership, clean air, healthcare, including dentistry, and the right to have control of one's own life are the fundamentals that governments should provide for all New Zealanders.
Gary Hollis, Mellons Bay.
The letter of the week, no less, informs me that "... the wanton destruction of the environment, so [that] a few already wealthy industrialists and their political cohorts can line their already bulging pockets".
Even if this was true, wouldn't it rather be the stupid consumers, like magpies grabbing
every short-lived rubbish that glitters, who make this possible?
K H Peter Kammler, Warkworth.
A quick word
NZ is the ideal country to elude every incoming disease if the proper response is given early enough. Rob Buchanan, Kerikeri.
What possible reason could NZ have for dilly dallying in response to the coronavirus pandemic? This wait-and-see response is putting all New Zealanders at risk. J Leighton, Devonport.
It is time China takes a serious look at what they're doing in respect to hygiene, treatment and consumption of animals. After all they carry some clout; 18.5 per cent of the world's population. Glenn Forsyth, Taupō.
The Government is working on getting NZers out of Wuhan. They've established a working group to consider the logistics and advised that when the working group reports back they'll implement one or two of their recommendations by 2025. Bernard Jennings, Wellington.
Interesting, the lack of news about the investigation into the Iranian missile that brought down the Ukrainian airliner killing 170 people. Bob Wichman, Botany.
We don't need another museum in Auckland. Our present one is far more interesting than many overseas and, personally, I think it knocks spots off that big government-funded barn Te Papa. Pamela Russell, Orakei.
Will the number one song played in Britain this year be "The Final Countdown" by Not Europe? Kent Millar, Blockhouse Bay.
Why does it take three employees to do the news in the morning when Melissa Stokes can do such a fantastic job on her own, covering the evening news and sport? I S Thomas, Cambridge.
Black Caps coach Gary Stead shouldn't have to be explaining why they promoted Mitchell Santner to number four. He should be explaining why he's still in the team. Tony Potter, Remuera.
Am I missing something? All the scooter hoo ha. It's simple. Make them wear helmets and use cycleways. Colin Nicholls, Mt Eden.
How can the message get across to people that climate change is real and we need to do something about it when weather forecasters rave about "record high temperatures" ad the competition for the "sunniest NZ city" is touted on TV? Di Monkley, Hamilton.
I wonder how many other New Zealanders would love a public holiday called New Zealand Day to celebrate all the different nationalities who have worked to make this the country we love to live in today. Fairlie Blake, Waihi.
The saying goes that to make an omelette you need to break a few eggs. After seeing the mess that is downtown Auckland today, it looks more like a truck load of them have been driven off a cliff. Jeff Langford, Belmont.
It's time to change the name "City of Sails" to "City of Cones". Patrice White, St Marys Bay.
How did the last Neanderthals live? In tax-funded comfort in Wellington. Andrew Montgomery, Warren, NSW.