Home' Greymouth Star : November 27th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Friday, November 27, 2015
We appreciate the value of the Letters to the Editor
column as a public forum for West Coasters and
welcome your opinion and suggestions.
Letters may be submitted by post, fax or e-mail and
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Post to PO Box 3, Greymouth, fax to 768 6205 or
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uLetters to the editor
1832 -The world’s first tram, a horse-
drawn vehicle named John Mason, goes into
operation in New York.
1849 - Maori chief Te Rauparaha dies at
1919 - Bulgaria signs a World War One
peace treaty which yields territory to Greece
1935 - New Zealand’s Labour
Party, led by Michael Joseph Savage,
records a decisive victory in the
1940 - In Romania, the pro-Nazi
Iron Guard slaughter more than 60
aides of the exiled king, including
former prime minister Nicolae
1941 - The last Italian forces in Ethiopia
under General Nasi surrender at Gondar.
1942 -The French navy at Toulon scuttles its
ships and submarines to keep them out of the
hands of the Nazis.
1946 -The New Zealand electorate returns
the Peter Fraser-led Labour Party at the
general election, but with a narrow majority.
1967 - Israeli forces raze Arab buildings
in the Gaza Strip and on the West Bank in
response to Arab attacks, while the return
of some Arab refugees from the east bank
to the Israeli-occupied West Bank resumes.
French President Charles de Gaulle rules out
negotiations for early British entry into the
European Common Market.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
Anders Celsius, Swedish astronomer and
inventor of the Celsius scale (1701-1744);
Alexander Dubcek, First Secretary of
Czechoslovakia’s Communist Party
(1921-1992); Bruce Lee, Chinese-
American actor (1940-1973);
Jimi Hendrix, US rock guitarist
(1942-1970); Kathryn Bigelow,
US writer-director (1951-); Daryl
Stuermer, US guitarist (1952-);
Curtis Armstrong, US actor (1953-
); Patricia McPherson, US actress (1954-);
Kimmy Robertson, US actress (1954-); Caroline
Kennedy-Schlossberg, US attorney (1957-);
Charlie Burchill, Scottish guitarist (1959-);
Robin Givens, US actress (1964-) .
“Critics? I love every bone in their heads.”
— Eugene O’Neill, playwright and first
American winner of the Nobel Prize for
Literature, who died on November 27, 1953.
“But God proves His love for us in that while
we still were sinners Christ died for us.”
— (Romans 5:8).
Supreme Court jury,
after a retirement
of about an hour
yesterday, awarded £4000 general damages
and £579 special damages to Westport miner
William Morrison, aged 39. The plaintiff had
sought £5500 from the Attorney-General as
the result of an accident in the Sullivan Mine
at Denniston on February 25,1963.
Morrison suffered dermatitis because of the
accident and as a result was not able to work
underground on the coal face and thus not earn
the big money paid for doing so.
The Mayor of Hokitika Mr W J Richards
has received by registered mail a copy of one
of Hokitika’s earlier newspapers, the Hokitika
Advertiser and Goldfields Reporter. The paper,
dated September 5, 1865, had been sent by one
of the goldminers to his father in Scotland, and
was returned 100 years later by Mrs W B Watt,
In a covering letter, Mrs Watt told Mr
Richards the paper had been sent by her
grandfather to her great-grandfather. The
old newspaper will be placed in the Hokitika
Exercise Bien Hoa, a six-day operation, starts
tomorrow when national military ser vicemen
complete their training with full scale
operations in the Aratika bush and countryside.
The soldiers will be transported to Moana by
rail and will conduct an assault river crossing
of the Arnold River followed by an approach
march to the company’s base.
Airdrops of three-day rations will be
conducted and the platoons will carry out
independent attacks on ‘enemy ’ camp during
uFood for thought
Printed and published by the
Greymouth Evening Star Co Limited
3 Werita Street, PO Box 3, Greymouth
03 769 7900 (office)
769 7913 (editorial)
768 6205 (fax)
03 769 7913
03 755 8422
to butt out
Our thoughts and prayers are with the
families of those killed, the workmates of
the pilot and the Fox community.
The comments made by the Grey
Mayor on radio and in the press are
the comments of a person who has no
knowledge of what he is trying to talk
about. Further he speaks as though he has
some mandate from Westland to speak
which he does not. Every time Stockton
comes up he jumps in to speak for the
people of Buller when he has no mandate
to do so.
The aircraft movements in Fox and Franz
are the highest in the country and the
operators handle approx 6000 helicopter
movements per month. The safety record
of the operators over the last 20 years is
excellent and their pilots among the best
trained in the industry. Their maintenance
record is equally impressive.
For the Grey Mayor to go on about
health and safety tells me he thinks this
is a mining accident and not an aircraft
accident controlled by Civil Aviation.
Going public when no one has any idea
of the cause which could be any range of
things, including an extreme and rapid
change in weather conditions which is
completely unpredictable, is irresponsible
in the extreme and not his mandate.
Grey District Mayor Tony Kokshoorn
responds: “I was phoned by lots of media
for a West Coast reaction and my comments
were that the West Coast community has
been left devastated by the tragedy and that
our thoughts are with the families. Coasters
would help in ever y way possible. I also stated
that the operators have got to understand they
have to take a hard look at health and safety
so that this kind of accident does not happen
I told media to contact Rob Jewell and John
Canning for specialist comment regarding the
Mr Smith can rest assured that myself and
Mayors Howard and Havill work closely
together, but sometimes questions f rom media
refer to the West Coast region in general.
Health and safety, tourism and mining are
topics that have ramifications for Buller, Grey
and Westland districts. They have regional
importance for all of us.
I agree that the operator has an excellent
safety record but an accident has happened
with the death of seven people. It will be
fully investigated, and I for one have not
speculated on why the tragedy has occurred, as
Mr Smith has done.
My thoughts are with the families on this
1080 a dog killer
I read with interest the comments from
Tb Free that some of their signs had
been removed, and having just driven to
Christchurch and back I must say the
roadsides are decorated with the same
signs, on gateways and access points,
almost from the sea up to the Main
This drop is to prevent Tb escaping from
farms, as apparently some farmers from
a particular valley with a lot of Tb have
crossed the river.
It seems to me that Tb Free is getting in
early with its excuses as many dogs have
been killed where signs have not been put
(never been put) by the poisoners.
A lovely family pet was killed last time
this area was dropped, just that way, no
signs and nothing easily found to indicate
a drop had been done and this lovely dog
ate some baits, not bits of dead things,
baits. In spite of appropriate care it had to
be put down — a harrowing time for all.
My plea to Tb Free is firstly do not
use your poison, it is now too late for so
many things, pets and wild creatures even
Keeping your signs up to date does not
control what 1080 kills and what we lose.
Odourless, tasteless, colourless 1080 kills
everything that gets a lethal dose, signs
won’t prevent that.
I understand that finally some funds
have been allocated for the upgrade of the
toilet block in Runanga approximately two
months ago, and as yet nothing has been
The council is touting tourist attractions
to promote the local economy and yet
allow this disgusting eyesore to continue;
it would be the biggest turn-off on the
Anyone entering this building would
probably opt for the bush rather than
frequent this amenity. The place needs
painting, new tiles on the floor and proper
toilet paper holders which are tamper
proof. There is not even a light in the
ladies loo and I picked up a mess from
off the floor this morning thinking ‘who
was the dirty sod that did this? (Probably
a child)’. When I went to flush it down
the toilet the drain was blocked, which
probably explains why the toilet was not
Under the old regime I bet this
would never have been neglected to
such an extent. What is the matter
with the maintenance department that
they continue to ignore their social
responsibilities, and the hierarchy
responsible for their performance? The
first port of call for many visitors is the
local toilets and this reflects very poorly on
Runanga’s image. The tourist season is well
under way, which is more than can be said
for action on this facility.
Grey District Council assets manager
Mel Sutherland responds: “Unfortunately,
this facility suffers f rom a ver y high level of
The toilet is regularly maintained. At other
sites council has installed a noticeboard inside
the facility to confirm the dates and times
the toilets are cleaned. Even this noticeboard
was vandalised so often at the Runanga site
that we gave up and removed it. The toilets
continue to be regularly maintained.
Notwithstanding all this, we are at the
final stages of deciding whether to do up the
existing toilets or replace with new ones.
It is possible that the council can provide a
new modern facility for a similar price.”
My dad Bill Whiteside was born in
Greymouth in 1903. His grandfather
and grandmother gave their names to
Boddytown — Richard and Mary.
My dad passed away in 1992, but
growing up he passed many stories on to
us. One of them was about Dalray’s owner
Cyril Neville. Dad told us that he was
Cyril’s cousin, and to be honest I do not
know. What has always intrigued me was
that dad always called him ‘Apples’ Neville,
which I was told was his nickname.
This story fascinates me because many
years ago in Hornby we lived next door to
the McCarthys, who grew up with my son
and they are all now in their late 50s. They
are also interested in racehorses and the
McCarthy boys boast about their uncle
training Dalray — C C McCarthy. My
son was not aware of the connection, so
today there is a friendly rivalry going on
Is there anyone in the area who might be
able to throw some light on the story of
Miami, Q ueensland
The recent Greymouth Star article on
health targets can be used to explain how
the use of wrong targets can contribute
to increasing health costs and a worse
The pressure to meet targets such as
time in A and E can influence decision
making. This leads to an increase in
diagnostic errors and treatment delays.
If there is any uncertainty about safety
of discharge, sometimes it is better to
obser ve the patient for a period. For
patients needing admission, it is important
to ensure the clinical team is appropriate
for the diagnosis or the likely diagnosis.
Patients admitted under an inappropriate
c linical team tends to have worse outcome.
Sometimes, treatment delays of minutes
can matter. The best place to start
treatment depends on the problem and
Checking for diabetes is another example
of use wrong a target which can lead to a
suboptimal outcome. Usually, screening
is used to diagnose type 2 diabetes. Those
with an interest in early management
of type 2 diabetes have known for two
decades that normalisation of the blood
sugar can be achieved with diet changes
in most patients. For over a decade it
has been known that normalising blood
glucose with diet can reverse type 2
diabetes in the majority of the patients.
Most patients who were diagnosed at
screening were not informed that type 2
diabetes was a reversible disorder or how
to reverse it.
Without that knowledge, nearly all
patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes
needed increasing doses of medication
over time. It would have been wiser to use
the resources to educate clinicians and
patients before collecting more patients.
A better target would have been the
proportion of patients who reversed the
We will have to wait and see the details
of childhood obesity targets to figure out
the likely consequences.
Our DHB stated categorically that our
hospital had to be of a ‘post-earthquake’
standard because of the natural disaster
risks on the Coast. There was huge debate
over the integrity of the existing buildings.
The community was overruled by the
board -- the existing building must come
We have just been told that the new
building does not entirely comply to the
post-earthquake standard. They now state
that in the case of an earthquake they will
transfer the injured. How long will it take
to transfer the seriously injured (and how
many)? What if the Coast is isolated?
These decisions are a serious breach of
trust and human rights.
The new building is not a ‘hospital’ at all?
It is a health facility or integrated family
health clinic. The board has downgraded
the Coast from a base hospital to a
c linic, thereby reducing the standard of
health care that has to be provided by
Who gave the board the mandate to
downgrade health care on the Coast?
It has also been stated that this is a
new system that will be trialled on the
Coast (what if does not work?). How
can you trial health care when there is
only one standard that the government
must provide? Where is the community
involvement that was ‘over whelmingly’
promised at the beginning?
I believe this has always been the
board’s agenda, and, with no intentions of
discussing it with the community. It is all
about money, capital and running costs.
If you have a chronic or terminal illness,
or we have a serious disaster or event,
or you are elderly, I believe the risk of
avoidable death will be higher. It seems
that frontline staff and community have
no say and come second to bureaucrats
Our lives are in the hands of bureaucrats.
Chris T Coomber
ive people, including two
Italian reporters, went on trial
in the Vatican this week, to
outrage from rights groups,
on charges arising from
publication of books in which
the Holy See was portrayed as mired in
mismanagement and corruption.
At the first session, dominated
by procedural issues and dubbed
“Kafkaesque” by one of the defendants,
journalists Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano
Fittipaldi said they had done nothing
wrong and had simply fulfilled their
“I am incredulous in finding myself here
as a defendant in a country that is not
mine,” Fittipaldi told the court, adding
that publishing news was protected by the
Italian constitution as well as European
conventions and universal declarations on
The trial, being heard by three non-
clerical judges in the sovereign city-state,
stems from publication of two books
which depict a Vatican plagued by
mismanagement, greed and corruption
and where Pope Francis faces stiff
resistance from the old guard to his
While the Vatican follows a 19th-
century Italian criminal code that is no
longer used in Italy, the fundamental
approach to criminal trials is similar to
the Italian legal system of magistrates and
prosecutors. Unlike Italy, the Vatican does
not have jury trials.
A criminal law making it illegal to leak
documents was introduced in 2013 after
another leaks scandal that preceded the
resignation of Pope Benedict that year.
That scandal, in which Benedict ’s butler
was arrested for stealing documents from
the Pope’s desk and leaking them to
Nuzzi, came to be known as “ Vatileaks”.
The Italian media has dubbed the latest
episodes “ Vatileaks II”.
The defendants risk jail sentences of up
to eight years but legal experts said the
two journalists were not likely to serve
any time in the Vatican’s small jail, which
is rarely used, and would probably receive
suspended sentences, if any.
A Vatican prosecutor told the court
that the Holy See did not intend to
muzzle freedom of the press and that the
defendants were bring tried for the way
the documents were leaked by the officials
and obtained by the journalists.
Two of the officials indicted, Spanish
Monsignor Angel Lucio Vallejo Balda,
who was number two at the Vatican’s
Prefecture for Economic Affairs, and
Italian laywoman Francesca Chaouqui,
a public relations expert, were arrested
earlier this month.
Balda and Chaouqui were both members
of a now-defunct commission Francis
set up in 2013 to study economic and
administrative reforms. Vatican employee
Nicola Maio, Balda’s assistant, also went
In their indictment, prosecutors said
Balda, Chaouqui and Maio formed “an
organised criminal association” with
the aim of “divulging information and
documents concerning the fundamental
interests of the Holy See and the State”.
Nuzzi and Fittipaldi wrote books based
on the leaks. Their indictment said both
solicited and applied pressure, especially
on Vallejo Balda, to obtain secret
documents and information.
Asked at a news conference how the
trial could affect Francis’s image as a man
of mercy, Nuzzi suggested that it was
fomented by other Vatican officials bent
on protecting their privileges and status.
“This trial against journalists is a trial
against transparency. In it, I see no
evidence of the clear message of a sweet
revolution the Pope espouses every
day ... unfortunately, there are various
personalities in the Church (and) when
you talk about the privileges of a caste, the
caste is not happy,” Nuzzi said.
The Vatican has said Merchants in
the Temple by Nuzzi and Avarice by
Fittipaldi, give a “partial and tendentious”
version of events and has accused
the writers of trying to reap financial
advantages from receiving stolen
documents. The books were published
earlier this month.
Both journalists complained they had
been forced to accept court-appointed
lawyers and had been given documents
needed for their defence only days, or
hours, before the trial started.
Fittipaldi told reporters that he had not
met his lawyer until the trial was about to
start. The court ruled that a senior Vatican
judge would have to decide if outside
lawyers could represent the two but that
judge was out of Rome.
The next session was set for Monday.
Nuzzle told reporters during a break
that the trial was “absurd and Kafkaesque”
but it would not stop him from publishing
The human rights watchdog, the
Organisation for Security and
Co-operation in Europe, urged the Vatican
on Monday to withdraw the charges.
“Journalists must be free to report on
issues of public interests and to protect
their confidential sources,” the OSCE’s
representative on freedom of the media,
Dunham Mijatovic, said.
“I call on the authorities not to proceed
with the charges and protect journalists’
rights in accordance with OSCE
commitments,” she said.
The Italian journalists’ federation, Italy’s
foreign press Association and AIGAV, the
association of reporters accredited to the
Vatican, also condemned the indictment
of the journalists.
“ We have to stress that publishing news
is precisely our job,” AIGAV said, calling
the trial “unacceptable”. — Reuters
Vatican charges journalists
Journalists Gianluigi Nuzzi, left, and Emiliano Fittipaldi, right, arrive at the Vatican to stand trial for leaking and publishing secret documents, in the latest development in
a scandal which is rocking the papacy.
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