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The Southland Times - - COMMENT&OPINION -

About that Nanny State

When Na­tional gained power back in 2008, Key de­cided that school can­teens should again be free to serve chips, pies and sug­ary drinks as of right.

This ef­fec­tively un­did the gains achieved un­der the aus­pices of the Na­tional Heart Foun­da­tion’s healthy can­teens pro­gramme.

No ‘‘Nanny State’’ for New Zealand, we’ll pro­mote obe­sity in­stead.

Key in 2013 gave his Gov­ern­ment a 6/10 score for this short-term think­ing.

Min­istry of Health in­for­ma­tion states ‘‘the child obe­sity rate in­creased from 8 per cent in 2006/07 to 11 per cent in 2014/15, and adult obe­sity rate in­creased from 27 per cent in 2006/07 to 32 per cent in 2015/16.

Chil­dren liv­ing in de­prived ar­eas are more in­clined to obe­sity and limited life­time prospects.

Health­care costs for obe­sity are more than $800 mil­lion, and ris­ing, be­cause ‘‘in­fal­li­ble, ev­i­dence based’’ Na­tional wanted peo­ple to have free choice.

Obe­sity is as­so­ci­ated with poor self-es­teem, low­ered ed­u­ca­tion and em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties, and weaker so­cial par­tic­i­pa­tion.

To­day, Na­tional pro­motes pub­lic-pri­vate part­ner­ships, like en­ergy drink dis­pensers in the schools.

Ed­u­ca­tion, self-reg­u­la­tion and rules are needed to es­tab­lish good healthy eat­ing habits, so our chil­dren have ap­pro­pri­ate sus­tained en­ergy that meets a healthy life­style, and their de­vel­op­ment al­lows them to achieve their po­ten­tial.

Re­source this at very low cost, and re­as­sign the health dol­lars saved to cover the short­fall in health fund­ing.

Any al­lo­ca­tion by gov­ern­ment pol­icy is se­ri­ously im­pacted neg­a­tively by poor cost anal­y­sis, and this is a fine ex­am­ple of a pol­icy fail­ure.

Lead­er­ship is dif­fer­ent from pan­der­ing.

Vote with your in­tel­li­gence, not just your wal­let. David Rus­sell In­ver­cargill

Ding ding

Peters v Mor­gan? I’m book­ing a front-row seat for this bout.

In one cor­ner, we have the sea­soned pro­fes­sional, Peters.

Fac­ing him, the novice with no his­tory al­ready tak­ing swipes at Win­ston and he is not even a mem­ber of Par­lia­ment yet.

All Mor­gan is at the mo­ment is a wealthy jerk go­ing through a midlife cri­sis.

We had the same thing hap­pen in the Mul­doon era with Bob Jones.

His po­lit­i­cal ca­reer was very short as well!

I fail to see why Mor­gan is gun­ning for Peters so hard.

Maybe Win­ston backed into his car and drove off.

Win­ston Peters has been in pol­i­tics a long time; the rea­son be­ing he is good at what he does.

Mr Mor­gan needs to learn pol­i­tics is a bat­tle of pol­icy not per­son­al­i­ties.

Best he backs off and sells good pol­icy to the vot­ers and not have them wit­ness a stupid school­boy type scrap that will only prove TOP stands for Tantrums On Pol­i­tics. Ray Wil­son Mataura Abridged - Edi­tor

Step up, CTOS

We read that Sta­dium South­land needs fund­ing.

The ILT al­ready con­trib­utes $400,000 a year.

The Com­mu­nity Trust of South­land,with about $200 mil­lion in cash and shares, con­trib­utes a por­tion of $190,000 along with the South­land District Coun­cil.

The sta­dium has some­thing to of­fer all South­landers vir­tu­ally from birth to death.

A sub­stan­tial an­nual in­crease in con­tri­bu­tions from the com­mu­nity trust should be a no­brainer. S Gil­lan Lochiel

Then the cuts

For the past three elec­tions the Na­tional Gov­ern­ment has promised us ex­tra fund­ing for just about ev­ery or­gan­i­sa­tion and wel­fare group - pri­vate, vol­un­teer or State-owned.

But all we re­ceived was fund­ing cuts and clo­sures and job cuts.

Now this elec­tion they have ramped up their fund­ings to un­af­ford­able amounts.

If they suc­ceed in this elec­tion, God help us, be­cause we’ll be in for an­other round of fund­ing cuts.

Their ex­cuse will be to bal­ance the books as in­come from ex­ports was not as much as they in­tended. Rus­sell Rawl­ings Win­ton

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