Retirement crisis looming

There is a retirement crisis in New Zealand. Experts have made a compelling case for an imminent “zombie apocalypse” of retired Kiwis, stalking the streets and cannibalising the disposable incomes of innocent passers by. If humanity survives the collapse of the global financial system, climate change, peak oil, peak population, Australian DIY home improvement shows, …

Palm Lagoon Hotel can save Dunedin

It has been cheering to read recent positive feedback about the proposed grand waterfront hotel situated off Dunedin’s premiere fishing wharf, henceforth to be known as the Palm Lagoon Precinct. The trouble with our small city is the overwhelming negativity we have towards ambitious projects proposed by visionary thinkers. After reading yet another glowing report …

Advice to mum and dad investors

I was impressed and excited to read a local finance broker’s advice to potential “mum and dad” investors in privatized public assets in the Otago Daily Times (Friday 6 July 2012). Mr Chris Timms of Craigs Investment Partners says any complaints about ordinary Kiwis not being able to get in on the sale of the …

Save the Dunedin Metro Postshop and Kiwibank

The following opinion piece appeared in the Otago Daily Times on 17 May 2011 as part of a campaign to prevent the closure of the Dunedin Central post office. The closure by NZ Post management proceeded, despite the collection of thousands of petition signatures, protest actions at local post offices including a rally and a …

Cocktails and corporate warriors

The following article appeared in the Otago Daily Times on 9 November 2010 in response to reports of private “war games” for businessmen with the SAS in exchange for donations. Of all the embarrassments that have defined New Zealand recently, the SAS “weekend warrior” episode is the one that jars the most. It had a …

Beyond the sea: New Zealand’s ports at risk?

The following article on New Zealand ports and maritime issues was originally published in Foreign Control Watchdog issue 123 (May 2010), the magazine of CAFCA, and is also available online at their site. Somewhere beyond the sea somewhere waiting for me my lover stands on golden sands and watches the ships that go sailin’ . …

Broke, Anxious or Seriously flush

The following article appeared in the Otago Daily Times, on Wednesday 3 February 2010, in response to an article by Dr Mathew Zacharias entitled Patients’ rights trampled in drive for equality and ongoing talk about user pays models at the Dunedin Public Hospital. I was interested to read the hard-headed realism of Dr Mathew Zacharias …

Man makes religion; it does not make man

Published Otago Daily Times, 30 October 2009 In a Faith and Reason column, published in the past few months in the Otago Daily Times, the writer – a pastor – started his discourse on religion by quoting Karl Marx as saying “Religion is the opiate of the people”. The problem is this quote is, strictly …

Freeloading tourists not wanted here

Letter of the week, Otago Daily Times, 11 April 2009, on cost saving measures by Dunedin tourism authorities. One of the great things about living in Dunedin is the free entertainment put on by our various councils. The latest installment in this ongoing tragicomedy is the bemused letter to the ODT from Chris Marshall, of …