Verging on ridiculous
Parking on berms should be considered vandalism and Third World behaviour and should attract a hefty "on the spot" fine. Mowing them doesn't create a parking lot. Parking on berms can destroy the grass when dry and bog it up when wet, creating an eyesore, and risking damage to underground services. The berms are there to beautify the street, filter stormwater and provide easier access for repair, upgrade and any renewal of services including telcos, water, power and sewage. As I recall, parking on footpaths is already against the law.
In new housing areas, many homes appear to have a garage barely big enough to store the junk let alone today's oversized vehicles. The greater Auckland area should be considering a policy, similar to Tokyo of "no garage/parking - no vehicle". It is not the responsibility of ratepayers and taxpayers to provide free, indefinite parking.
R S Stratton, Te Atatu.
I congratulate the Herald on the article "Raid footage politicians didn't see" regarding the Operation Burnham raid reported by Nicky Hager. The New Zealand Defence Force, media and politicians should swallow some of their criticisms of Hager with a big gulp. The 12 seconds of removed footage reveals the killing of a group of civilians. My personal opinion is, this should have been front-page news.
Caroline Mabry, Glen Eden.
If you don't want to get in trouble with mummy and daddy for stealing a car, don't steal a car. None of the pathetic excuses given, such as wanting money or wanting to go somewhere that is too far to walk, give you the right to take some one else's property and possibly someone else's life.
I'd also like to issue a massive boo hoo to their exception to being rammed, spiked and pit manoeuvred off the road and then physically handled by the police - all things officers are specifically trained to do it their line of work in order to get dangerous criminals off the streets before innocent lives are lost.
Do they honestly think the cops want to go door-to-door breaking the news to families that their son/ daughter has died in a horrific car crash that all started because the muppet driving the car was only on his restricted, four Cruisers and one joint deep and didn't want to get caught past curfew because his XBox might get confiscated?
It's about bloody time we start teaching teens to take responsibility for their actions and stop blaming the cops for doing their damn job.
Because five years from now, when you're all grown up and it's your car stolen in the night by some self-righteous punk with an attitude problem, who you gonna call?
Jessie Sutton, Warkworth.
I was interested to read about the various reasons why teens flee from police. During the war, I was in the RAF and stationed in the country, on the Welsh border. One day a local resident invited my friend and me to dinner. We stayed longer than we had intended and by the time we left it was dark, and we had not brought our bicycle lights. We set off into the darkness and suddenly heard a whistle. On looking round we saw a rather rotund Bobby on a bicycle. "Quick, the cops!" shouted my friend. We raced off down the road. We knew the policeman had absolutely no show of catching two extremely fit 19-year-olds. The whistle got fainter and fainter. When we arrived at the WAAF site and the safety of our hut, we threw ourselves on the ground and laughed and laughed. What an adrenaline rush. I am 94 now but it still brings a smile to my face when I think about it.
Anne Mitchell, Meadowbank.
In 10 years' time, when climate Armageddon fails to eventuate, are we going to be able to sue our politicians and climate scientists to recover the many costs they have artificially introduced to save a planet that did not require saving? Impressionable minds are being overwhelmed by anxiety and indoctrination to willingly accept increasing government control. Our appointed, not elected government ministers continue to travel in their fossil-fueled BMW limousines and rack up huge miles flying domestically and internationally while mandating we pay more to satisfy their alarmist demands. Interesting that all Transport "initiatives" affecting the motorist are being trumpeted by the Associate Minister, rather than the hapless Phil Twyford. When will this government understand that it is productivity that runs our economy, not ever increasing taxation? I thought fuel taxes were increased to discourage inefficient vehicles? We must reject the false notion that we need new taxes to save us from catastrophe.
Mark McCluskey, Red Beach.
Extremely disappointed that the Government is not going ahead with what it promised with regard to changing Office of Ethnic Affairs to a ministry.
The previous government had done nothing about this either to address the important issues regarding settling in, or how to have the inclusion and acceptance of new migrants in this country.
What is the rationale about why we cannot have a Ministry of Ethnic Affairs? It is obvious that we have more people born outside of New Zealand, living and working in our largest city, Auckland.
Maybe some of the bureaucrats who are based in Wellington need to relook into what should be ministries or offices. They need to come and work in the diversely populated Auckland for at least six months. New Zealand's future growth, wellbeing and gross domestic product very much relies on the monies and skills that migrants bring. Here is hoping that they will look at reconsidering this.
Baljit Kaur, coordinator, Waitakere Ethnic Board & West Auckland Newcomers Network.
Road to ruins
The time is right for all politicians to be made to forgo all air travel for a whole month, so that they are made to suffer the same pain as we motorists when traveling on any sealed road in the country. As a motor homer, I just spent a week, not enjoying the countryside, but with eyes peeled and focused on the immediate road ahead so as to avoid the many many "craters" that littered our journey. Some of these deep holes are not only damaging our vehicles, but could very easily tip a motorcyclist off their machine or worse cause a head-on collision of any vehicle. In short, the state of our roads are horrendous. Auckland has already suffered an extra 10 cent fuel tax increase and another four cents nationally, and it is said only 30 per cent of the fuel tax is actually used for the roads, with the rest being skimmed off for other failed government promises. That is appalling, Jacinda. Stop worrying about bludging imports and start treating the taxpaying people of our country with respect and entitlement or this really will be another one-term government.
Paul Baker, Waitakere.
The unresolved problem about owning an electric vehicle is the absolute lack of public charging points. Although it only takes 30 minutes to charge, it's not uncommon to be third in line and facing a 90-minute wait. Similar to the tragic case of public transportation infrastructure in major cities it doesn't bode well for convincing the wider public to stop using petrol vehicles.
Ray Calver, Grey Lynn.
I am always amused when I hear "knowledgeable" assertions that we need to introduce compulsory superannuation.
We already have it and have since World War II. When I was an apprentice in the mid 60s the rate was 3 pence in the pound or 2.5 per cent. It was "stolen" by the Muldoon government when - using efficiency as an excuse and saying there was no need for the "duplication" of government depts - it became handled by IRD. The super deduction went instead into the consolidated fund. It was then no longer itemised on one's pay slip separately and, over time, was conveniently forgotten and vanished.
Winston Peters should well remember this.
Regards from a septuagenarian whose memory cells are not impaired by political expediency disease.
Greg Keenan, Waipapa.
Fran O'Sullivan is slightly behind the times with her comments about the dire situation of New Zealand's infrastructure (NZ Herald, July 10).
Apparently, the Business Advisory Council, chaired by out-going Air New Zealand chief executive Christopher Luxon, presented a damning indictment of New Zealand's infrastructure regime to the Prime Minister in late June, saying there is "no overarching vision or leadership in New Zealand for infrastructure development". Among their requests, the BAC asked for an independent Infrastructure Commission.
But the Coalition Government is already onto it.
Right now, there is legislation to establish a New Zealand Infrastructure Commission being considered by a Parliamentary Select Committee.
The commission will address existing challenges to the way New Zealand plans for and delivers infrastructure, such as poor incentive structures that have resulted in ad hoc and short-term investment decisions. And it will also be looking into all the matters laid out in O'Sullivan's report.
Jenny Kirk, Whangārei.
Letters: Electric vehicles, loneliness, language, berms and Kane Williamson
Letters: Traffic lights, civic building, free speech, plastic bags and Steve Hansen
Letters: Kerb parking, lonely deaths, fuel tax, university research and Max Cryer
Short & Sweet
Why are electric cars more than twice the price compared with petrol-driven cars when they have very few moving parts?
Bruce Tubb, Belmont.
National worries making cars more expensive will hurt the poor. I guess that's because it reduced the poor to living in them. Dennis N Horne, Oxford, UK.
National says that the scheme to help New Zealand move to a greener vehicle fleet will hit the poorest the hardest. The same article pointed out the worst cars for CO2 emissions: Rolls Royce, Lamborghini, Chrysler, Ferrari and Bentley. Mark Beale, Wattle Downs.
I personally cringe more when I hear "the dahta is ..." instead of "the dayta are ...", but at least it takes my mind off trifles like nuclear war. John Hampson, Meadowbank.
We are strongly encouraged to pronounce the Māori language correctly, so why not English? Kristin Campbell Smith, Rotorua.
The editorial "Landlords lax on insulation response have little excuse" has a lot to say about private landlords but it is silent on the fact the state has an extra three years to get its rentals up to standard. Brian McLachlan, Onerahi.
Will the Government also give refunds to all those who did pay the fees? Or will they be effectively punished for obeying the law? Kent Millar, Blockhouse Bay.
If students didn't behave stupidly at school balls, such searches wouldn't be necessary. R Wilkins, Kohimarama.