Readers write mixed messages
People, questions and their topics – like gouging and LPG, thieves, a critical non-reader takes the plunge and says he’s not guilty, what about the wealthy paying their debt to society, and where is an Inspector Morse? Brian Wheeler, Mt Roskill: “LPG does not mean Let’s Price Gouge. We are constantly confronted with an ever-increasing price for petrol or diesel. We visit the supermarket, dairy or garage and find milk, cheese, butter and bread are rising and gradually being priced off the table for many. Meat looks set to follow.
“Electricity and gas prices are also increasing. Those in employment are finding it difficult. Those of us unemployed or on a pension have no alternative but to tighten our belts and use less or do without. Our income does not rise to cope.
“I am 72 and recovering from a couple of operations and need some warmth. For many years I have used an LPG heater during cold weather. LPG over time has risen a few cents or a dollar.
“I went to where I have always gone and refilled a 9kg bottle for $21.23. Next time I went for another refill, the cost was $26.23. I was astonished – a rise of $5. I am not aware of us importing LPG so can only assume that some New Zealander is ripping off his countrymen.
“Apologies if I am wrong.
“A few cents, maybe a dollar, is possibly acceptable but an approximately 25 percent price rise is not and should be investigated and controlled by the government. I do not think it is too much to ask that the poor and elderly should be fairly treated.
“To think I did 22 years’ naval service, mostly on low pay, and went through six war zones in supposed peacetime, to protect those in power and give them the good life so they could screw me in my old age. Now I need to think who shall I vote for? It’s payback time.” PB: For the record, 9kg at our country service station costs $28.80. Judy Oatham, Onehunga: “I write this as another reminder to us all, that New Zealand is no longer the safe country it was, even while we are in our own homes.
“On the morning of Tuesday, May 27, I was burgled and yes, I was at home. This came as quite a shock, surely me and my humble belongings would be safe in the bright light of day and, while I was in the house!
“Sadly, it appears this is no longer the case. An opportunist thief, under the guise of a church member collecting for a walkathon, reached in and took my wallet out of my backpack packed ready for Uni and calmly walked away. Where was I, you might ask? A few feet away taking a brief phone call.
“It seems odd that he chose a morning and a weekday, when most people are out, to maximise opportunities for sponsorship. That is except for the elderly and busy mothers with children. If he is genuine, surely evenings and weekends would be a better option. Just who is this young man targeting?
“Fortunately, I never carry cash. I am a student and I just don’t have extra money around. In hindsight, perhaps this was a cheap lesson, although upsetting and frustrating! Indeed, writing this has just reminded me to close my sliding door completely. Opening windows and doors has become such a habit, something Kiwis do – though perhaps a lot less these days!” Alan Kindred, Dominion Rd: “Thanks for putting into print your thoughts on our justice system regarding the Kahui twins and Ian Crutchley. I am in complete agreement with your comments and the sensitivity that occurs as soon as the whanau is involved. The question is, though, what can we do about it?
“It’s not the law, it’s the judicial interpretation of it. Our judiciary has made the police hamstrung and cunning defence lawyers know it. Perhaps there needs to be an Inspector Morse out there somewhere?” Peter Coumbe, west Auckland: “I normally don’t read you but I did take note of your column on child abuse and your assertion that we, as New Zealand society, are guilty of letting this happen, that we have been tried and found guilty.
“By who exactly – you? Doesn’t seem a very fair trial to me. I would be interested to know why I am responsible and what your evidence is to support this.
“Perhaps you can make me responsible for tradesmen diddling their customers, for customers not paying tradesmen, for certain government departments lavishly spending taxpayers’ money, for certain finance company CEOs claiming bonuses when their company went bankrupt, for highranking police officers getting new cars when suspended, for certain prime ministers speeding through the night at outrageous speed as though we were a tinpot banana republic with disregard for anyone else on the road.
“I could go on. You may as well shoot me – except I am going to work tomorrow to pay rates and taxes and keep my loved ones from want and my border collie in dog biscuits, and perhaps do some community work and give my customers a fair deal.
“I wish for a change someone would feel guilty about people trying hard in this country in the face of lack of integrity and insight in every direction. Am I guilty of not giving a rat’s a*** – expletive deleted – about people’s pathetic reasons for doing the wrong thing? You bet ya.” Rachel Quartermain, Grey Lynn: “I too feel distressed by these awful cases of parents hurting their children. But ‘the government, its departments, the community, families, whanau, neighbours and friends’ shouldn’t be blamed. The responsibility for the murder of these children lies with the person who murdered them.
“Many thanks for fostering dialogue in the community regarding these important issues.” Ian May, Papatoetoe: “The problem of violence towards children is handed down from the parents to the children. Simple answer: Break the cycle.
“What is being done at present isn’t working.
“All girls pregnant for the first time should be required to attend parenting classes – preferably with the father. This would be arranged through their GP and run by an organisation like Plunket.
“Funding could be looked for from the very wealthy. We note the trusts set up by people like Bill Gates.
“This would be an opportunity for some very wealthy folk in New Zealand to give something back to the population that helped make them wealthy and at the same time improve their public image.” – Abridged J JK Boulton, Waitakere: “I wondered if you could mention our abortion statistics? I note those who shed crocodile tears over high profile baby deaths support the death of unborn children by their silence.”
To contact Pat Booth email: offpat@snl. co.nz. All replies are open for publication unless marked Not For Publication.