I READ with interest and disgust the report in Wednesday's Whanganui Chronicle (December 5) entitled "Raise the NZ pension age".

I would like to know why.

Shouldn't the age be lowered back to 60? Digital technology and automation is increasingly doing away with more and more jobs.

The discussion is already being had about the feasibility of paying everybody a universal income and how that can be managed.

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There is an acknowledgement that there won't be enough jobs for everybody in the future as a result of digital technology, and yet these useless reports continue to push an arguably redundant cry of raise the age of retirement. What for?

Perhaps the cry should be lower the retirement age back to 60 for those who wish to claim it — and if people lose their jobs after 50 years of age, make it possible for them to have a benefit that does not depend on them using all their savings first before they can claim it.

Let's face facts: How easy is it for somebody who is past 50 to get a job now?

Some of us have saved hard, so we can have a decent retirement and enough viable life left to enjoy it.

DOUGLAS PITCHER
Ohakune


Black Christmas

Christmas is upon us again with a myriad of mythical sales on "Black Friday" etc and an increasing move to purchase "on line"?

This trend will cost local employees their jobs and local businesses their very survival.
The Government report just released is very critical and has "150,000 people considering suicide and 20,000 attempting it".

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The Minister of Health says new funding will be considered in next year's budget and that's seven months away, so based on annual stats some 400 will no longer be with us by then.

Our political priorities are sorely amiss where planting trees and plastic bags take precedence over saving our people. There is a "March for Hope"on December 15 from Kowhai Park, so make sure you hold your dear ones close in a family embrace this festive season so the procession grows no longer.

And a prayer wouldn't hurt, either.

Merry Christmas.

KEN CRAFAR
Durie Hill


We need to get a life

A good column by Barry Soper; I commend it to those who missed it (Chronicle, December 6).

Yes, in answer to his question, we do need to "harden up". Seems we have to look to "Nanny State" before we say, or do "anything" which might upset "someone"!

The "namby pamby" "political correctness" regime was originally introduced by the female of the species, who were out to make a point that they were equal to the male.

I shall never forget being reprimanded by a female staff member when I referred to a street "manhole"; I was told that I should correctly refer to it as a "personhole". We need to stop "treading on eggshells", ignore "Nanny State" and get a life.

V MEREDITH
Whanganui


Clouding issue

The two-page, scientific article on abortion in the Chronicle, December 2, really is thuggery disguised as reason.

Trained journalists, surgeons, intelligentsia are, by the tens of thousands, sitting in their comfort zone while children in the womb are mutilated by instruments.

It's all very reasonable, is it not?

Then Ann David of Waikanae in the Chronicle ( letters, December 4) clouds an important issue on "assisted dying" by leaving out the operative word "suicide". This reasonable letter is diplomatic language to approve suicide.

Are we not trying to prevent this evil? Suicide is very unhealthy.

F R HALPIN
Whanganui


Sharks wired up

Australia is having a problem with sharks biting swimmers, they are tagging the sharks with sensors that trigger alerts, so they can get the swimmers out of the water.

Wanganui and Patea have the answer to their problem: record the sand mining barge and play it under the water at their beaches, because it chases sharks, whales and porpoises away. The sharks will run a mile.

I won't charge them for this advice, as I have borrowed it from Debbie Ngarewa-Packer and her well informed friends. I'll just tell them to ring Debbie for the facts.

G R SCOWN
Whanganui


Send your letters to: The Editor, Whanganui Chronicle, 100 Guyton St, PO Box 433, Whanganui 4500; or email editor@wanganuichronicle.co.nz