Leave it to kids to solve the reading problem
Re A fix for the reading slide (Jan 9), on the declining reading abilities of children, might it not simply be a case of children solving the problem themselves in a lateral, forward-thinking way?
For example, traditional reading skills are evolving into text-speak, which in many ways is more phonetically correct than traditional English, the latter being full of ambiguous terminology, unnecessarily long words, and words which have confusingly multiple meanings.
Young people have done an amazing job by inventing a whole new language in the space of a few mere decades. What other generation can boast an achievement like that?
Language is an evolving beast, and anyone who can’t accept that is either scared of change or too old to be able to change.
Chris Lakomy, Paraparaumu
The New Zealand TAB has replaced its own betting system with a licensed UK-supplied system providing a fuller service, at a cost of $40 million, to try to entice back punters who are bypassing the NZ TAB and using overseas websites.
Although this is an expensive solution for the TAB, it is in contrast with the underarm tactics of Australia, which for about the last two years has blocked New Zealanders accessing their own NZ TAB accounts while in Australia.
Blocking websites is the type of action taken by totalitarian regimes and is another example of Australian discrimination against New Zealanders. It’s well past time for the Minister of Racing, Winston Peters, to sort out this issue with his Australian counterparts. Murray Carpenter, Wilton
A stop to bus use
Re Brakes still on capital’s traffic plans (Jan 10), the recent bus service ‘‘improvements’’ have certainly contributed to the brakes on traffic flow. I once was a bus user but now often need to use my car instead, and so do many others.
One example (of many) is the resiting of the Kilbirnie hub busstops so many shoppers and commuters must cross two twolane roads to reach them, and buses are often held up making a righthand turn at the busy Bay/ Rongotai Rd intersection.
An obvious choice, and vastly cheaper, would be to make a short stretch of Rongotai Rd buses only, then put the Kilbirnie Crescent North route bus stop where the temporary one was outside Pak’n Save. The other three stops could go back where they were, in Rongotai Rd near the shops.
This rerouting would make bus travel more attractive, and wouldn’t majorly inconvenience private vehicles which have several route alternatives (unlike the buses).
So will Greater Wellington Regional Council please rethink throwing good money after bad on a covered walkway that won’t solve the problems, and consider the above option.
The bus service would then be a better contributor to good traffic flow, and also do its bit to reduce greenhouse gases. Lee Pomeroy, Kilbirnie
Martin van Beynen got it so right (Jan 12). I am an old guy well into my GoldCard years but Lime scooters have added another way to pretend I am still a whole lot younger. I use one whenever I have an excuse.
Of course I could walk but how much more fun it is to come home from the supermarket with my shopping in my backpack at 20+ kmh down the Petone Esplanade, or Lime into the Bob Scott Retirement facility to visit a friend, or to show off to our grandchildren. Well done to our council for letting these fun machines loose in Lower Hutt. Of course there will be accidents, I haven’t had one yet, but that is part of being alive.
Norman Wilkins, Petone
Jet ski idiots
To the two idiots on the jet ski at Evans Bay on Saturday who kept chasing and breaking up the pod of dolphins.
There were a great number of bystanders along the Bay watching their charming personalities and enjoying the pod’s display. Then you came along. You saw the pod, yet disregarded its safety by circling, obstructing the dolphins’ path and cutting through the group by making sudden changes in speed and direction.
All marine mammals are protected within New Zealand waters. Section 28 of the Marine Mammals Protection Act (1978) gives the Department of Conservation powers to hand out severe penalties for offences committed, which you did. If only you could be caught for your reckless behaviour.
Kylie Merrick, Miramar [abridged]
Lack of foresight
To O¯ taki MP Nathan Guy, you appear to be trying to politically ridicule the proposed two-lane highway from O¯ taki to Levin in stating that it should be four lanes.
I am not arguing with your reasoning here. It sounds good.
But what happens when the four-lane road reaches the Manawatu¯ River bridge at Whirokino? This is only a twolane bridge, incidentally designed under the previous, National, government.
Maybe you would like to give the National Party the thumbsdown for its lack of foresight when designing this bridge. Kev Jensen, Levin
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