Hi Joe, yes indeed.
It is a great pity that whereas siesmologists have ramped up monitoring of the Canterbury region, that professional journalistic work does not seem to have matched it. There is so much going on and it is so badly needed.
I was very sorry indeed to see Christchurch's great advocate John Campbell put out of a job, no doubt by management sensitive to reigning power structures and related funding issues. Our media is after all largely owned and controlled by big business interests.
The whole basis of democracy is one of collaboration and the right, indeed the need, to critique those in charge, the right of review, the right to justice... It would be patronising to say that the people of Christchurch deserve no less, when it's a basic human right, and supposedly the foundation of political governance here in New Zealand. At present it's very hard to see how this could be reclaimed.
Hi Barnaby, thanks for writing and posting this useful article. I couldn't agree more about the absence of concerted and continuing political pressure from those parties in 'opposition'. There has been a strange and alarming silence in this respect. Certainly there have been individual politicians who have worked very hard at it but at a party level this has not been the case. It could and should have been an election issue - nation-wide - as it is such a matter of fundamental democratic rights - and if it can happen in Canterbury it can happen anywhere else in the country.
In October of 2012 I wrote an article outlining the post-earthquake loss of democratic process in Christchurch and critiqued the power structures that replaced it. It’s frightening. I wrote:
HOW IS THE GOVERNMENT GETTING AWAY WITH THIS?
When this sort of thing happens in other countries we call them dictatorships, and foreign envoys are sent in to attempt to reason with reigning despots. What happens when this occurs in our own country and where are the foreign envoys?
The full article is here:
Democracy on a slippery slope ~ Christchurch earthquake aftermath
It seems that the general power structures of that time have changed but little, continuing to stagger about destructively. I grew up in Christchurch so feel its plight keenly. I mourn the profound loss of opportunity for a rebuild that could have been a truly creative undertaking, and for the on-going suffering of so many who live there.
Beautiful image, Chris!
Te Atatu Peninsula
Hi Russell, I'm with Lillith about one with the picnic table in it!
It's nice to see the complexity of Auckland city reduced to a manageable size, with its skyline appearing to be far in the distance, although those of us who are familiar with the location know that it is relatively close at hand. The mudflats are such a vital part of the intertidal zone there - I had forgotten. It's a long time since I have been there.
Very much appreciated, thank you, Ian! A happy hour was spent with the two videos - what better to do on a rain-drenched Sunday! "Lazy Sunday afternoons....."
Love this track - it really cheered me up! And the Stanley Urwin story-telling bit at the end - delightful! :-)))
Thanks for that David. I'll know to look for them if / when I am out that way. Since posting the remark about the spoonbills in Kaikorai Lagoon I have been reliably informed that there have been more of them there on the inland side of the bridge.
Thank you, Chris, I love all the local content you so often include! And the expression about the dog barking particularly! Hope you are getting plenty of good clear sunshine where you are. :-)
The coast here seems to be specialising in cloud this summer, which is all very interesting in its way, but not all that summery. I don't think we are at the barking dog stage yet however!
Spoonbill and body guards, Otago Harbour
Hi David, I wonder what part of the harbour your one was in? This beauty was resident in the Kaikorai Lagoon for a time. I have since seen two of them together there, which makes me wonder what the young spoonies look like! They are such odd looking birds and yet so very lovely in their own special way. Occasionally I see one flying past here in the evening, fairly high. The shape of their bills makes them unmistakable.
A salt meadow on an estuary near Dunedin. As I recall there were glassworts here but I don’t seem to have any closeups. Quite a number of salt-meadow specialised species in this photo.
That was a lovely walk, Lillith! When I wrote about it I spent ages tracking down information about the reserve, about some of the tiny plants in the salt-meadow, and locating sites that provide useful informaton about these environments. If anyone else is keen on this sort of thing you can find it in my article here: An estuary walkabout ~ Kaikorai Lagoon and Island Park Reserve. There is a photo of the glasswort, although growing in amongst other plants.
In the top photo you can see the salt-meadow - cushion-like. If you come across one of these DON'T stand on it!!!