NZ Lifestyle Block - - Your Letters -

I write with a good news story from the Manawatu.

My hus­band and I are sel­dom struck down by ill­ness, not even the com­mon cold, but this win­ter the most lethal kind of cold/ cough re­duced our nor­mally very ac­tive, sus­tain­able life­style to a slow crawl.

The stone oven was lit this morn­ing, the sour­dough bread which be­gan its cre­ation the night be­fore was baked to per­fec­tion, but the joy of giv­ing much of it away has been blunted by this amaz­ing lethargy which not even the quiet win­ter sun­shine can pen­e­trate.

We have been sleep­ing and sleep­ing, then Ernst called for NZ Life­style Block. Our sub is due and I could not find Mur­ray Grim­wood.

So out of the bleary-eyed glaze of the non-en­er­getic, we de­cided we would not re­new our sub. Why? Be­cause Mur­ray Grim­wood lifts your mag­a­zine out of the or­di­nary and gives us a rea­son for sub­scrib­ing! He pro­vides hope and chal­lenge and a point of dif­fer­ence to us (and prob­a­bly to many oth­ers). That you both wel­come and en­cour­age his rant­ing


NZ Life­style Block The Dunedin meet­ing on cli­mate

change at­tracted a big crowd.

This meet­ing was given lim­ited ex­po­sure and was orig­i­nally planned

for a small (ho­tel) venue. But af­ter 250-

odd folk at­tended a lo­cally-or­gan­ised, pre-

meet­ing meet­ing, the or­gan­is­ers felt the pres­sure and changed to the larger Glen­roy Au­di­to­rium.

Just as well. There were 350 peo­ple present (I counted them). At about

the same time the ‘Choose a New Flag’

cir­cus rolled into town - a meet­ing that

was well- her­alded - and at­tracted 25 peo­ple.

A good pro­por­tion of the 350 at­ten­dees were young peo­ple, the in­her­i­tors

of the Earth, who were un­der­stand­ably con­cerned as they’ll have to live

through the ram­i­fi­ca­tions of what ear­lier gen­er­a­tions have done/are do­ing.

They joined older speak­ers in con­tribut­ing to an elo­quent, re­spect­ful, rea­soned de­bate. Out­side of an oc­ca­sional ques­tion ses­sion af­ter a thought- pro­vok­ing lecture, I’ve never wit­nessed any­thing quite like this dis­cus­sion-

filled evening, and never on this scale.

Some­one recorded the whole thing and tran­scribed it, 12 pages that should be pre­served

for pos­ter­ity.

- scroll down to find the ar­ti­cle en­ti­tled “Dear MRF… Sin­cerel y, Dunedin”.

This is the first­time I’ve heard oth­ers talk­ing about in­te­grated prob­lems,

of which cli­mate change is only one.

At least three speak­ers touched on

the fact that any­thing we did in this re­gard

was re­lated to the ques­tions of pop­u­la­tion, resources and sus­tain­abil­ity. The

usu­allysolid ap­plause re­duced no­tice­ably

when those par­tic­u­lar speak­ers sug­gested

that the mid­dle class might have to lower

its sights, my take­away im­pres­sion

of the night. Here’s one of those com­ments: “The other side to this is there are


There were 350 peo­ple present, as counted by Mur­ray.

lot of peo­ple here that are very mid­dle class. To be clear, for this rad­i­cal

stepchange you have to give up every­thing… your pen­sion funds gone, your idea

of buy­ing houses to get fund­ing for

ma­te­rial wealth gone… that’s all mar­ket econ­o­my­de­pen­dent. It’s all gone. Are you

go­ing to make that change? You can’t just

leave it up to th­ese (Min­istry) guys. Some

of you have to re­ally think about it.

You don’t have Ki­wisaver. You do some­thing sen­si­ble. Don’t put it all on th­ese

guys.” Quite.

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