Nick Cave was definitely a highlight gig for me as well, turning an arena concert into something much more intimate and personal (and *fun*, which - lets be honest - isn't something he has always been known for)
Loved seeing Marlon Williams play at the Pt Chev RSA - small venue for a ridiculously large voice.
And also loved seeing The Wedding Present at the Kings Arms - "C'mon Gedgey" - those buzzsaw guitars never fail to hit the spot.
Its all been very messy, self-initiated, and a sad way for Kennedy Graham in particular to draw his tenure and service to climate change awareness in NZ political life to a close
heh, I see what you did there :)
We sat next to Jacinta on the back seat of the bus going up the hill at the end of one late night at Splore (a couple of Splores ago I think), with the bus rocking some disco, and she engaged our teenage daughters in animated (and informed) discussion about the merits of one of the headline acts we had seen earlier that night. Charmed.
Reminded me of seeing then PM Helen Clark (and subsequently David Shearer as Labour leader) strolling around the Gladstone school gala entirely freely and relatively anonymously over the years. One of the reasons to love living in New Zealand - just couldn't imagine that level of political freedom happening in too many other places around the world.
I think the new policies of Labour (and you are right there has been some excellent policy work done) has been overshadowed, or at least partially obscured, by the missteps (or at least the noise about the missteps) around immigration
Our dealings with Andrew Little have been good, a thoroughly decent and principled person who would probably make a great chief of staff, but not (clearly) a good retail politician.
Different argument, and one that would take a different thread (and one I essentially don't disagree with you on) but I was making the point that - for good or ill - our political system is capable of systemic/structural change - and that was an example.
Our way of running things is incremental and is thus incapable of systematic and major change involving several steps at once.
Interesting and terrifying thought. Certainly the Government of the last decade has been in thrall to the notion of incrementalism as a virtue (with the successful navigation of things like the GFC regarded as evidence of the success of this step-by-step approach as a political philosophy).
And it drives me insane - cos while I'm sure such a balanced, controlled inertia-promoting view of the world avoids nasty short-term shocks, it also clearly helps with the avoidance of dealing with 'big' issues. And our political system's long-term failure to deal with macro trends in housing, wealth inequality, media, environment, health, education, skills shortages, globalisation, an ageing population (basically you name it) is the biggest indictment of our legacy for future generations.
And yet, and yet - we know it can be done. For all their faults, the 1984 Government took bold action to course-correct from the cul-de-sac of Muldoonism. We've seen our Government's make progressive law changes that reflect changing mores and modern contemporary social views. We've seen the emergence of young engaged politicians. So I'm hopeful things can change.
Not for the first time in the last couple of days, I'm reminded of a John Clarke line, "if we don't know what we want, we'll get what we're given."
lso people who want to feel that their investment portfolio is righteous thing that doesn’t exclude those who really try hard enough. I’m under no illusions that my own investment property is not a contributor to anything genuinely positive in the NZ economy.
I am wary of the "boomers are greedy leeches" narrative. To my mind, the vast majority of older property investors are simply behaving rationally and sensibly because many of them were badly stung in the 80's stock market crash, and in the later finance company collapses. With our tax and investment systems so ridiculously geared towards property as an asset class, for those who could it has simply been the most sensible way to save for their retirement.
The fault lies not with them, but with decades of a Government law and policy-making bias towards property. And it goes back that far .... I remember Michael Cullen being particularly (and cavalierly) dismissive of the idea of introducing a capital gains tax. This sort of institutionalised crisis takes decades to form, and will probably take a long way to unwind - assuming there is a political will to do so.
In the meantime, commercial interests continue to try and find ways to exploit that growth in wealth.
other bug-bears .. cars that try and sneak the last of the orange light in rush hour intersections, who end up stranded in the middle, thereby blocking cars, cyclists and pedestrians from crossing.