Home fight response to harsh rules

Niki Rauti is fighting to stay in her own home. For all those who say it's not her home, we say she has paid rent on time every week for 21 years. She has long ago paid for the right to stay in her home. We don't want people, especially elderly and ill people, to be transient. It's bad for the elderly, the sick, for children, for parents, for families and for communities.

For 70 years Housing NZ policy was "homes for life". It was only in 2013 that National took that away. There are already people in Glen Innes that moved house when HNZ forced them out, and now they are being told "three years is up now, go look in the private market, this isn't your home".

Children in those houses already moved, their lives disrupted, their parents found new doctors, new schools, and now they are being displaced again. That's what Niki is fighting against. It's an evil policy. We need people safe in their homes and communities. Not transient forever in the middle of a housing crisis.

Milo West, Mt Albert.


Affording a tattoo

After reading "cost of tattoos" I find it hard to accept that people such as Audrey Trimmer look at me and make assumptions as she did in her article.

Unfortunately in the past year I have had to source a few food parcels just to get by and am forever grateful to the Salvation Army. I have two ta mokos done by a well known artist in Gisborne. The cost was koha. My partner at the time was a hunter and instead of paying cash I did a trade with meat.

Otherwise, the cost would have been over $1000. If this was the case I wouldn't have any tattoos, my children come first.

Get off your high horse, don't be like Audrey, be smart, think outside the square. Until you know for certain what you're talking about, and that the person receiving the food parcel actually paid cash for their tattoos, then you have no right to judge.

Anna Kerisome, Gisborne.

Wealthy new citizen

Your article on Pete Thiel is excellent investigative journalism. Something is definitely not right when I think of the process people have to go through to become New Zealand citizens. Thiel was born in Germany, lived his life in America and now he takes New Zealand citizenship. For what reason? It has to be financial. What did he do to acquire this citizenship, all done very quietly. Keep up the good work.

Wendy Laraman, Eastridge.

Farmer's view of rodeos

The treatment of animals at rodeos is disgraceful. TV footage of calves being lassoed, crashing to the ground and then leg-tied was painful to watch. I raise similar-aged calves and while they are ultimately sold for meat, they receive care and consideration during their life on my farm. It is ironic at least that prosecution of bobby-calf handlers was widely condemned last year but rodeo "sportsmen" get away with much worse. I doubt that any serious and caring farmers would condone the treatment meted out to animals at rodeos. I would be interested to know Federated Farmers' view of this mistreatment of such stock.

David Field, RD Rotorua.

Horse's lot

Let me tell you about the rodeo horses we grazed for years on our Ohakune farm. What a totally fab time they had. They had all been broken at some point to a saddle, not wild and not scared, they knew the score.

For 362 days of the year they had a huge paddock with views of the mountain, great grazing and shelter. Then they came in for three days, get to buck the hell out of a cowboy or girl, knew where the exit chute was. Next day, with their mates, back to their fab home for another year.

What a better life than that of a neglected pony on a small block, or on a farm as the cattle go on a truck to the meatworks, smelling death for hours before it's their turn.

Skylab was with us for years, destroyed many, many cowboys, had a great 362 days of the year. Should have seen what Skylab could do to a cowboy before he went back to his paradise.

Justine Mary Adams, Ohope Beach.

Elected bodies afraid to charge

Neal McCarthy (unaccountable agencies) misses the point. The management of wastewater through a publicly elected board or council is what got us into this mess. This was one of the reasons for establishing the unelected organisation, Metrowater, in the hope that they could do the politically unacceptable and raise the charges. Unfortunately it does not seem to have worked.

Separating the "old" Auckland City's sewage and stormwater needed very large rates rises and this was politically untenable. As they say, everyone wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to die.

Stuart Matthews, Albany.

Wait, it is coming

On November 9 the Herald had an article headed, "Long, hot summer is on the way". Now we're asked, "Is this the worst summer for years?" So far it is. However, for the past nine years February and March in Auckland have been fine and warm, so there's a very good chance that, as forecast, "the mercury will climb". Mr Dunne's idea to try to chase the sun is daft.

John Clements, Orewa.

Northern view

Is response to all the bleating about the "the summer that isn't really a summer", get over it. We Northlanders are enjoying a long, hot summer that has been great for holidaymakers but we are now faced with squabbles over domestic water shortages, thefts of water and feed shortages on farms due to a lack of rain. The weather is what it is and no amount of bleating is going to change it.

Maureen O'Higgins, RD Kaeo.

Perils of reporting Trump

Most average people hold media organisations in disdain but are not personally attacked by them. With the media relentlessly attacking Trump they are very much at risk of creating the "enemy's enemy is my friend" scenario which is obvious now by the more positive opinion of Trump and the ever declining opinion of the media.

In other words the media are pushing people into Trump's camp because their selective and entrapment news-obtaining methods are seen as far worse than a few silly quips by Trump, and a bigger threat to democracy.

I could imagine the expletive-ridden vernacular used around the NZ Herald newsroom would make old Trump look like a choir boy as they try to seize the moment to gain a point over him.

Does he have a thin skin? I'm not sure. An elephant doesn't but that doesn't mean they don't get annoyed with the mice under their feet. They fear them for a reason just as we should all fear the media.

Jared Baker, Orakei.

Working with him

I worked with a boss for many years that was just like Trump - shrewd, smarmy, and spiteful, not to mention single-minded. Through many battles I came second every time. It wasn't until I stopped fighting the man, and worked as hard as he did for the company, that it paid dividends, not only for the remuneration but for benefits, recognition, and freedom as well.

It will be interesting to see over the next four years which world leaders work with America for mutual success, or against.

Glenn Forsyth, Taupo.

Waiting for action

Last weekend's storm blew a few tree branches on to the edge of Ngahue Rd, outside the Remuera Golf Course. Since then, the area has been surrounded by police emergency tape and cones are in place to narrow traffic from two lanes to one.

Why? The situation merely requires a couple of council blokes and a small truck to lift the branches and remove them. No focus groups needed. I'm yet to form an opinion on the new mayor, but I'm convinced that council management is incompetent beyond redemption.

Murray Fitchett, Remuera.

Cancer diet

I was deeply disappointed in your decision to publish Sarah Mooney's article on a UK woman's "treatment" of her breast cancer with a vegan diet, vitamin C drips, supplements and a variety of other things that are mostly proven to be ineffective in the treatment of the common cold, let alone cancer.

The article is one-sided and misleading, suggesting that this approach is working for Ms Valentine, when in fact it is likely to lead to her entirely unnecessary and untimely death.

As a physician I have seen a young father die of a bowel cancer that had a more than 90 per cent chance of cure when first diagnosed, but after two years of failed "alternative treatment" had spread throughout his body. I have held the hands of the relatives of those whose lives were taken by misinformation and who will always wonder, "What if?"

Stephanie Cox, Greenlane.