New Zealand Listener 03.7.2020

(Barré) #1

about the sources of their
knowledge, music, films, laws,
literature and ideas to identify
which are “foreign” and
which are “core”. Since New
Zealanders need to know how
to communicate with other
people, this policy is a form of
cultural annihilation.
Scattering a collection
diminishes its availability
through the interlibrary loan
service. Why deprive New
Zealanders of those taonga?
Dolores Janiewski
(Highbury, Wellington)

The Editorial about political
party funding (February 29)
says there is nothing to suggest
the public would favour
state-funding of parties. Yet we
already have it.
As Massey University
professor Claire Robinson
points out in her book
Promises, Promises: 80 Years of
Wooing New Zealand Voters,
the parliamentary committee

that allocates public money
for election broadcasting is
dominated by the National
and Labour parties, which
give themselves most of it.
Last election, they shared $2.
million of the $4,145,
Robinson points out that
new ideas don’t come from
the centre, where National and
Labour reside, but from the
margins occupied by smaller
parties. She gives the example
of the change to MMP, which
came about largely because of
public mistrust in the elec-
tion outcomes of 1978, when
Social Credit gained 16.1% of
the vote but only one seat in
Parliament, and 1981, when
it got 20.7% of votes and only
two seats.
The publicly funded Parlia-
mentary Service also provides
about $50 million a year for
research and media staff, news-
letters, focus groups, surveys,
travel, accommodation and
a plethora of other services


(^) IM
TO ENTER Send your captions for the photo above to [email protected],
with “Caption Competition No 373” in the subject line. Alternatively, entries
can be posted to “Caption Competition No 373”, NZ Listener, Private Bag 92512,
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THE PRIZE The winner will receive chef Simon Gault’s collection
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Caption Competition {[email protected]}
Boris Johnson: “I’ve left the
coat hanger in my jacket
again.” – Paul Kelly, Palmerston
Prince Harry: You’ll never
take off with that excess
baggage.” – Graeme Bulling,
Johnson: “Carbon
emissions, eh. From now
on it’s Air Icarus for me.”
– John Stribling, Wellington
Harry: “Don’t labour it.
Just leap and fly.” – Jo Bowler,
Johnson: “Left hand or
right hand for an annual
stipend?” – Tony Clemow, Kamo
Johnson: “Between Brexit
and Megxit we’ve been
hung out to dry.” – Bruce
Eliott, St Heliers, Auckland
Johnson: “You may have
quit the royal heir force,
Sir, but you’ll always be the
wind beneath my wings.”
– Dean Donoghue, Papamoa Beach
Johnson: “Keeping your
options wide open?”
– Kate Gore, Rotorua
Samantha Barnes, Wellington

  • many of which are used by
    parliamentary parties to build
    their public profile.
    Robinson thinks the alloca-
    tion of public broadcasting
    funds should be turned on its
    head so the smaller parties get
    the funding they need to pro-
    vide people with information
    on which to base their vote.
    That sounds like a start
    towards a real democracy.
    Chris Leitch

Congratulations on a well-
written and thoughtful
editorial on this issue.
Sylvia Hill

Warwick Elley forgot to men-
tion one important element
in his discussion of NCEA
(“The dumbing-down of
Kiwi 15-year-olds”, February
1; Letters, February 22). That
element is extreme and mind-
crippling boredom.
I was a high-school teacher
and, thank heavens, retired
just before NCEA began. But
I’ve been watching my grand-
children progress through
their years of NCEA. They
are bored out of their minds
and can barely stand to go to
Repetitive tasks designed for
assessment do not stimulate





No, Harry,
crucified is
like this.
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