Intensification around the rail corridors is not the point. Intensification must be around the rail nodes, or stations as they were called in my youth. It is interesting (disclosure: I am Whangarei resident often employed in Auckland) that none of the alternatives explored in the CCFAS turned out to be viable. Perhaps the brains of Auckland could produce a few viable options for a city wide transport plan before proceeding with a terminally ill-mannered attack on Gerry Brownlee. In the meantime, contemplate the progress of Personal Rapid Transport. Three years ago in the Beca report, it simply did not exist. In the CCFAS it was dismissed in the most outrageously incompetent way. In five years, everyone will claim that they always said it was a good idea.
And for those following the great Auckland gravy train (CRL sorry) $173 million has been allocated as fees for c'nts (pronounced "consultants" of course.)
Iowa Electronic Markets has Obama at 73cents, Romney at 27cents (and falling) to pay $1. Their graph shows Obama consistently ahead in the electoral college. The popular vote is much closer.
Their professional liability insurance will cover MSD's costs.
I have a bridge for sale.
The truth is, things look bleak even if a miracle is visited on the mine and everyone comes out safely. The Pike River mining company is deeply in debt, and it will not open again. All the jobs are gone.
Pike River Coal Ltd is gone but the coal is still there, the access tunnel is still there, and the economics still favour a well capitalised mine. The jobs are desperately needed and the mine can be rendered "safe" by draining the gas ahead of mining. It will take months - perhaps a year or so, but it will probably happen.
But surely we are in a recession and it is the gummint's job to do something about it. Task list for the minister:
1: Restore full employment
2. Create a favourable balance of trade
3. Restrain the growth of public debt
4. Catch up with Australia
These are all things that the government promised at the last election. Why not deliver? The Key government resembles nothing so much as a large dog chasing Volkswagens. They have now caught the Volkswagen and they don't know WTF to do with it.
So they transmute into a wuncharchy. After nine years in opposition to develop policy.
We want to catch up with Australia? Get a wunch of bankers to tell us how.
We want to create jobs? Get a wunch of bankers to tell us how.
Want to create export led growth? Get a wunch of bankers to study the problem.
These are not difficult problems. It is just that there are a lot of preconceptions preventing the wunch from seeing the solutions. English's distasterously inflationary attempt to increase GST by 2.5% is a case in point.
GST can be increased to 50% without any direct effect on internal prices, but with immediate effect on the profitability of exports and import replacement industries. It simply has to be done correctly and in a fiscally neutral way.
Because GST is refunded at the border under GATT rules, a 50% GST would provide a large export stimulus. Chocolate manufacture for Australasia would return to Dunedin. Biscuit factories could put on an extra shift to supply Australia. Slowly, manufacturing would recover from the damage done by years of currency manipulation.
There are solutions. Its just that the wunch is so blinded by conventional wisdom that they will never be able to see.
The question was answered on National Radio this afternoon. Sea Lions give birth around boxing day and are impregnated within three days. This is made more comfortable because they have two uterusses or uteri or whatever. If someone calls you bisexal it just means that your breath smells of fish.
When the subject in question was benighted she became Dame Debbie, not Lady Coddington. We know, as We walloped her Ourself.
Having seen so many Christmas pantomines, We well know what a Dame looks like, and We would never mistake the said subject for a lady.
Incidentally we are a Majesty, not a Highness.
E II R
Just to preserve Steve Judd's gem for posterity, it is CODDINGTONSWALLOP with an S to preserve homology.
Wouldn't it make a catchy title for her column? Go on Steve, let her use it without royalty.
Of course the land is moving - vertically. Napier rose more than 2 metres in the last century and may do the same again. Greymouth is in trouble whether the sea rises or not. Will Wellington slide into the sea, or will its harbour drain away? Will anyone care? Over much of our coastline, land movement will trump rising sea level.
A real concern is the crappy use of oversimplifications like food miles and fart taxes. A moment's thought should be sufficient to realize that all the carbon emitted by the cow was captured by the grass as it photosythesized. Sure some of the carbon has ended up as Methane rather than Carbon Dioxide, but the methane is oxidized by natural atmospheric processes, so long as we don't overload the system. Since we are a small remote country miles from anywhere, we are unlikely to do this. How much of other countries' emmissions land on New Zealand as acid rain? Are farmers nett emmitters at all?
And why no consideration given to building topsoil? You plant a forest, and the carbon sequestration is a one off. Building topsoil can be continued indefinitely, and has many other benefits.
Air travel emmissions, ignored by Kyoto, are now being seen as significant. Some opinions rate fuel burned at 35000 feet as three times as damaging as fuel burned at ground level. Bearing in mind that the annual increase in air travel is now equal to the total world air travel in 1967, there could be a major problem here. But its much easier to point at the rural sector because that allows everyone to exactly as they please.
Oh - and Garth George drowns kittens.