Home' Greymouth Star : August 17th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Monday, August 17, 2015
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uLetters to the editor
1786 - Frederick the Great, King of Prussia
since 1740, dies in Potsdam, and is succeeded by
Frederick William II.
1859 - Tightrope walker Blondin crosses
1896 - Prospecting party led by George
Carmack discovers gold on Rabbit
Creek in Alaska, a find that touched
off the Klondike gold rush.
1969 - Dr Philip Blaiberg dies in
South Africa, 19 months and 15 days
after receiving a heart transplant,
a sur vival record at the time; 248
people killed as Hurricane Camille
hits the US Gulf Coast; Woodstock Music and
Art Fair concludes near Bethel, New York.
1976 - Earthquake that causes tidal wave
on Philippine island of Mindanao leaves an
estimated 8000 people dead or missing.
1980 - Baby Azaria Chamberlain disappears
from Ayers Rock campsite in central Australia.
1982 - The first CDs begin rolling off an
assembly line in Hanover, Germany.
1983 - Ira Gershwin, US lyricist and elder
brother of George, dies, aged 86.
1987 - Former Nazi deputy fuehrer Rudolf
Hess dies aged 93.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
Davy Crockett, US western pioneer (1786-
1836); Mae West, US actor (1892-1980);
Maureen O’Hara, Irish-born actor
(1920-); Robert De Niro, US actor
(1943-); Belinda Carlisle, US singer
(1958-); David Koresh, American
cult leader (1959-1993); Sean Penn,
US actor (1960-); Gilby Clarke, US
rock musician-formerly Guns N’
Roses (1962-); Steve Gorman, US
rock singer (1965-); Donnie Wahlberg, US
musician-actor (1969-); Jim Courier, US tennis
“ Everyone is necessarily the hero of his own
life story. ” — John Barth, American author.
“ But go and learn what this means: I desire
mercy, not sacrifice. For I have not come to call
the righteous, but sinners.” — (Matthew 9:13).
Picnic areas, public
and other commercial
planned to ser ve the travelling public along
the Haast Pass highway when it opens in
November. The Minister of Lands, Mr Gerard
revealed this in Parliament on Friday. Mr
Gerard said the Department of Lands and
Sur vey, Tourist and Publicity and the Ministry
of Works in association with the Westland
County Council have plans well advanced for
facilities along the highway.
“ Picnic areas are also planned and land is
being sought by the Department of Lands and
Sur vey for public offerings for sites for motels
and other commercial enterprises to ser ve the
travelling public,” Mr Gerard said.
Whether or not the controversial Vine Creek
will be diverted into the Hokitika River will
depend on the outcome of a loans poll to be
held on September 11. The creek has often
flooded over the farmland of Kowhitirangi
farmers who, two years ago, were united in
their request to the catchment board that a
solution be found.
However, such a diversion involves
considerable expense. In fact, the estimate
for the work stands at £24,500. of this figure
£4090 in loan money would be required to be
met by residents of the area. Two years ago
residents of the areas surrounding the trouble
spot were united in their appeal for a solution
— the diversion. Today however, dissension
is evident. Those currently not affected by
the flooding are generally not prepared to
contribute to the cost of repaying the loan
uFood for thought
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Call to disband
When you cut through the PR spin of
the DWC announcement setting aside
$1m for each council to seek out business
opportunities to grow employment and
then pass them to DWC to evaluate, you
quickly realise that DWC has no ideas and
thinks the councils will help.
For crying out loud, each of these
councils received $7m from the original
settlement and only the regional council
has retained any benefit.
DWC is an economic development trust,
hence the ‘development ’ in its original
name, but now wanders like a rudderless
ship in a storm. It is a complete waste of
DWC advises it is not into regional
development. It has no ideas on how to be
part of fending off the current downturn.
It has funded councils to take up an
economic development function as it does
not have the ability to carry out the role.
Now, it announces that councils will
be able to come up with ideas for job
creation and they will then be submitted
to DWC for consideration. Really? It is
no surprise the mayors are all saying nice
things about this move, and one wonders
if the announcement is a cry for help from
DWC was established as an entity
to either grow or retain our economic
position on the Coast, not to get fat
around the breakfast table, or become
involved in what Tai Poutini Polytechnic
is well able to handle, or spend all of their
time trying to get someone else to do their
The trust has deviated away from its
objectives upon establishment — ‘regional
A way for ward is to settle the existing
DWC trust and establish three trusts in
Buller, Grey and Westland, or establish a
Regional CCO, settle the DWC trust, and
place its capital with the CCO.
The DWC model does not work, you
have the same staff, the same advisers, so
the best you can expect is the same thing
we have had since 2002, and frankly it is
not good enough.
What right has the minister to complain
about Development West Coast? They
have made for themselves a very neat
‘ boutique’ business, where most staff have
admitted to ‘an offer I couldn’t refuse’
scenario and even a chief executive who
seemed to be appointed on ‘the more you
pay, the more suitable the applicant ’ basis.
In an attempt to be more acceptable to
the public (whose money they sur vive on)
they appointed a ‘figurehead’. This ploy
failed and DWC still portrays a negative
image, with complete failures in almost
all their endeavours. To have DWC back
a business does not engender a positive
outlook like it should, let alone the
possibility of increased employment.
DWC will be the first to tell you how
much money they have left. I would
suggest that if we had put the original
amount in the bank we would have double
that amount with as much effect to date.
In breaking news, I believe someone has
suggested yet another person be appointed
to work in conjunction with another
gang, to waste what is public money. The
apathy of the local people has allowed
this mismanagement to continue and they
seem only to be heard when ‘it hits the
‘Drink-drivers testing West Coast police’
(August 10) was a headline in the New
Zealand Herald. Once again the West
Coast has featured in the national news
for less than favourable reasons.
Lowered allowable blood-alcohol limits
for drivers is an evidence-based reform
response to nationwide concerns about the
substantial health, social and economic
burden of alcohol-related harm. It is not
just the drunk-drivers at risk of injury but
others as well on the same stretch of road
who may be impacted when something
The West Coast overall has higher
than the New Zealand average rate of
alcohol-involved road traffic crashes (11.6
v 7.8/10,000 population). Road traffic
crashes involving alcohol on the West
Coast were also more likely to involve
injury than in New Zealand as a whole
When will West Coasters take on board
this potentially life-saving drink-driving
Clearly the weak sanctions for driving
under the influence of alcohol have been
a missed opportunity to send a more
powerful message to support and reinforce
this harm limitation measure. Is the
current Government listening at all to
related public comments of police and
There was a time when the travelling
public did receive ser vice, when refuelling
the family car etc, but times have changed.
If the blood-sucking, parasitic, oil
companies were to employ adequate staff,
the number of drive-off, no-pay
incidents would diminish considerably.
Michael J Millar
Fish and Game
Every three years the fishing and hunting
licence-holder public gets a chance to vote
for Fish and Game council members in
their region. The three-yearly election is
about to be held.
In recent years, in common with
government and local body elections,
apathy has been apparent and, in some
regional cases, there have been insufficient
nominations to fill the 12 seats around the
council table or to make for an election.
That is indeed sad.
Sportsmen and women cannot afford
to be complacent and let apathy creep
in. O ur trout and rivers need Fish and
Game councils as their statutory managers
and watchdogs. With reference to the
last election’s ‘insufficient nominations’
situation, it is vital that anyone with a keen
interest and commitment either stands for
council or nominates someone they believe
would make a great guardian of our fish
and game resources. Then, if given the
opportunity because there are sufficient
nominations, it is important that they vote.
Whichever course is followed, anglers and
game shooters should make democracy
With the opening of a new trout fishing
season almost upon us, all anglers should
ensure that they sign their licence to
register as electors when elections are held
US president Abraham Lincoln once
said: ‘Elections belong to the people. It’s
their decision. If they decide to turn their
back on the fire and burn their behinds,
then they will just have to sit on their
NZ Federation of Freshwater Anglers
he ‘dark web’ is a part of
the world wide web that
requires special software
to access. Once inside,
websites and other services
can be accessed through
a browser in much the same way as the
However, some sites are effectively
“ hidden”, in that they have not been
indexed by a search engine and can only
be accessed if you know the address of
the site. Special markets also operate
within the dark web called, “darknet
markets”, which mainly sell illegal
products like drugs and firearms, paid for
in the cryptocurrency Bitcoin.
There is even a crowd funded
“assassination market ”, where users can
pay towards having someone assassinated.
Because of the the dark web’s almost
total anonymity, it has been the place
of choice for groups wanting to stay
hidden on-line from governments and
law enforcement agencies. On the one
hand, there have been whistleblowers
using the dark web to communicate with
journalists, but more frequently it has
been used by paedophile groups, terrorists
and criminals to keep their dealings
There are a number of ways to access
the dark web, including the use of Tor,
Freenet and I2P. Of these, the most
popular is Tor (originally called The
Onion Router), partly because it is one of
the easiest software packages to use. Tor
downloads as a bundle of software that
includes a version of Firefox configured
specifically to use Tor.
Tor provides secrecy and anonymity by
passing messages through a network of
connected Tor relays, which are specially
configured computers. As the message
hops from one node to another, it is
encrypted in a way that each relay only
knows about the machine that sent the
message and the machine it is being sent
Rather than conventional web addresses,
Tor uses “onion” addresses, which further
obsure the content. There are even special
versions of search engines like Bing and
Duck D uck Go that will return onion
addresses for Tor services.
It is a mistake to think that Tor is
entirely anonymous. If a website is
accessed, it can still potentially find
out information about whoever is
accessing the site because of information
that is shared, such as usernames and
e-mail addresses. Those wanting to stay
completely anonymous have to use special
anonymity ser vices to hide their identity
in these cases.
Services on the dark web would not
have been as popular without a means of
paying for them. This is something that
Bitcoin has made possible. A recent study
by Carnegie Mellon researchers Kyle
Soska and Nicolas Christin has calculated
that drug sales on the dark net total
$US100 million a year. Most, if not all,
was paid for in Bitcoin.
Bitcoin is made even more difficult to
track on the dark web through the use of
“mixing services” like Bitcoin Laundry,
which enables Bitcoin transactions to be
effectively hidden completely.
The developers of Tor and organisations
like the Electronic Frontier Foundation
(EFF argue that the principal users of Tor
are activists and people simply concerned
with maintaining their privacy. Certainly,
Tor has been used in the past for
journalists to talk to whistleblowers and
activists, including Edward Snowden).
However, even a cursory glance at the
Hidden Wiki — the main index of dark
websites — reveals that the majority of
sites listed are concerned with illegal
activities. Some of these sites are scams,
buy guns, fake passports and hire hackers
from the ser vices listed. But there are
likely sites on the dark web where these
things are entirely possible.
Although the dark web makes law
enforcement agencies’ jobs much more
difficult, they have had a great deal
of success in bringing down sites and
arresting their users and the people
behind them. The most famous of these
was the arrest of Ross Ulbricht, the
person behind the most well known of
the drug markets, Silk Road.
More recently, the FBI’s arrest of two
users of a child abuse site on the dark
web highlighted that they are now able to
use a range of techniques to unmask Tor
users’ real internet addresses.
— New Zealand Herald
The dark web
A Dallas man won a long battle to
retrieve a notorious piece of United States
history, the gravestone of assassin Lee
Har vey Oswald, which came back to
Texas this week from a small-town Illinois
museum after a years of legal fights.
David Card had to fight relatives and
an Illinois museum to bring back the
headstone that spent a few years on the
grave of the man who shot President John
F Kennedy in 1963 in Dallas.
“ It was ours, and it is the original
headstone of the most famous and
infamous assassin in the history of western
civilisation; maybe of all time,” said Card,
owner of a prominent Dallas music club,
who is limited on what he can say under
terms of the settlement deal.
Before turning up in the Historic
Automotive Attractions museum in
Roscoe, Illinois in 2009, it had been stolen,
recovered, hidden away, forgotten and then
passed around among Card family relatives.
The 59kg gravestone is engraved with
Oswald’s name, birth and death dates and a
cross surrounded by an elaborate engraved
floral border. It was replaced with a simple
headstone that now marks Oswald’s
grave at Rose Hill Cemetery in Fort
The original headstone was stolen from
the cemetery four years after Kennedy’s
death as a prank by Oklahoma teenagers.
It was found by police and returned to
Oswald’s mother, Marguerite Oswald, who
stashed it away in her Fort Worth home.
After her death in 1981, Card’s father
and step-mother purchased her home,
according to Card’s attorney Mike Futia.
“The Card family acquired the house ‘as is’
with whatever was left behind,” Futia said.
It was unaware of the tombstone until an
electrician discovered it while working on
The family handed the tombstone off to
other relatives to prevent the home from
being targeted by thieves. It ended up in
the possession of a relative’s widow and
then re-appeared in Wayne Lensing’s
Roscoe museum of historic automobiles
Lensing declined to respond to an inquiry
Card said he would like to donate the
tombstone to Dallas’ Sixth Floor Museum,
which is dedicated to the Kennedy
assassination, or somewhere that will
publicly display it.
“ While this was very costly, every day I
am more certain that I made the correct
decisions,” Card said. — Reuters
Lee Harvey Oswald’s original tombstone back in Texas
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