Eastern Courier : February 2nd 2011
6 EASTERN COURIER, FEBRUARY 2, 2011 OPINION Bereavement Volunteers needed in your area now. CONTACT Full training and supervision is provided. 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GENUINE MANUFACTURERS CLEARANCE SALE SALE THIS WEEKEND MASSIVE SAVINGS! Rimu bed frames & bedroom furniture various styles and timbers CASH / EFTPOS / VISA / MASTERCARD Cash & carry or delivery can be arranged -- Factory seconds -- End of lines -- Prototypes -- Ex display stock -- Mattresses MT WELLINGTON WITH PASTORS PETER & BEV MORTLOCK Mt Wellington Highway - Entrance, Aranui Rd, Opposite Sylvia Park 6am-TUESDAY&FRIDAY 9am-SUNDAY TV3 PRIME .com Our MPs should follow Obama The pending retirement of arch Tibet protester Keith Locke as an MP is yet another reminder that while New Zealand politicians kow-tow effortlessly to China's demands on protest, President Obama feels no obligation to follow suit. Remember how our politicians -- with one or two notable exceptions -- disappeared behind their closed Beehive office doors when the Dalai Lama was last here? Instead of sidestep- ping Tibet as an issue during the Washington hoop-la over the visit of China's president Hu Jintao, Barrack Obama raised it himself at a press conference. Very candid,'' he was. He opened by conced- ing that the United States recognises that Tibet is a part of Chinese territory'', then went on to urge Beijing to resolve concerns and differences including the preservation of the religious and cultural identity of the Tibetan people''. We have some core views as Americans about the universality of certain rights that we think are very import- ant, that transcend cul- ture. I have been very can- did with President Hu about these issues.'' Which prompted this reply -- a masterpiece of understatement from President Hu: China still faces many chal- lenges in economic and social developments and a lot still needs to be done in China in terms of human rights.'' Earlier Mr Obama said: History shows that societies are more har- monious, nations are more successful and the world is more just when the rights and responsi- bilities of all people are upheld -- including the universal rights of every human being.'' But let's not hold our breath expecting some public courage here on this topic next time the Chinese Big Brother comes calling. No one appears to have asked the guest to the US about the welfare and long-term prospects of Liu Xianobo, last year's Nobel Peace prize winner -- or his wife -- the most recent high-profile protester to disappear without trace in China. Talking about pro- testers and answering your unspoken question on which MP broke ranks on the Dalai Lama, it was New Zealand's major dissi- dent Hone Harawira and current headline-maker who welcomed the exiled Tibetan leader to Parlia- ment buildings very graciously and very much his way. This is how Wellington political writer Jane Clif- ton reported it: Harawi- ra's inconvenient natural exuberance vented when, returning to Parliament from a jog, he saw the Dalai Lama and entourage alighting at the front steps. Seizing his oppor- tunity to meet His Holi- ness, Harawira mounted an impromptu haka and escorted the Dalai up the steps, chatting away spiritedly, and never mind the sweaty running kit, displacing the self- appointed official wel- come by Peter Dunne, a devout supporter of Tibetan rights.'' Kia Ora, Hone. In the mailbag: You told as last week how Lord Laming in England was concerned that so many British agencies working with children are often unclear' about how to recognise signs of viol- ence or neglect or how to act on them. The same, appar- ently, here too. What puzzles me about the latest New Zealand scandal of the little girl so cruelly mistreated is why any of the health professionals, doctors, nurses and so on treating her didn't think to ask this frightened child: Is anyone hurting you?' At nine she was old enough to be able to talk to someone who wanted to help. If she was too fright- ened to answer that was proof in itself surely. Or they could have said: Just nod if some- one is hurting you.' How can someone not recognise a battered child covered in injuries, and presumably also frightened and with- drawn? Don't CYF staff have any training? Even an untrained person can recognise the symptoms of an unloved child, their body language, anxious, side- long glances from their eyes instead of a full trusting gaze, with- drawn manner, physical injuries, the whole energy of a frightened, loveless child. When will we ever learn?'' -- Name sup- plied In the mailbag too, more warnings about the phony IRD scam and, would you believe, another example in my personal mail. Someone obviously thinks I came down in the last shower. John Drury, Orewa -- I received on my com- puter a notification from the people you mentioned in your column and contacted the IRD and my bank. I went to the bank the next day and cancelled my Visa card and got a new one issued, I then got a notification from IRD about the mail being a scam. Thankfully, I did not give the scammers time to act and nothing was lost. You say about clues. Have you ever had the IRD talk about your fis- cal activity'? I would hazard a guess that the majority of people would not realise what fiscal activity means, so that's not a help. The advice from my bank was sound -- if in any doubt, check with your bank.'' Lynn Lucas, Stanmore Bay -- Like you I was a receiver of the scam email, suppos- edly from Inland Rev- enue, not once but twice also. I knew I was not owed any money but I was still tempted to open it. However, I rang IRD in the end and they were aware of the email and advised me to delete it which I immediately did. What is wrong with people that they have to resort to this behaviour and was it a virus of some description? As a senior citizen I can see how easily you could be taken in by things of this nature as anybody is tempted where money is con- cerned.'' To contact Pat Booth email firstname.lastname@example.org or write c/- of this paper. All replies are open for publication unless marked Not For Publication.
January 28th 2011
February 4th 2010