Home' Greymouth Star : June 25th 2014 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Wednesday, June 25, 2014
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
must include your name, address, phone number
and - except for e-mails - your signature. Noms de
plume are not accepted.
Please keep your letters honest, respectful and
within 300 words. Letter writers will generally not
be published more often than weekly. The Editor
reserves the right to edit or not publish letters,
especially those that are offensive or too long.
Post to PO Box 3, Greymouth, fax to 768 6205 or
email to email@example.com
uLetters to the editor
1580 - Book of Concord, a collection of
doctrinal standards of the Lutheran Church, is
1872 - Roman Catholic Jesuit order is
expelled from Germany.
1876 - At the Battle of Little Big
Horn, Sioux Indians led by Chief
Crazy Horse rout the US 7th Cavalry
led by George Custer, who dies with
his company of 264 men.
1903 - French scientist Marie Curie
announces the discovery of radium.
She and her husband Pierre later share
the Nobel Prize for physics for the discovery but
she dies in 1934 from radiation poisoning.
1967 - The Beatles perform their new
song All You Need Is Love during a live
1968 - British comedian Tony Hancock
is found dead in a Sydney hotel room after
1976 - Death of Johnny Mercer, US
songwriter and actor who wrote lyrics for
award-winning songs like Moon River.
1987 - Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev calls
for sweeping changes in Soviet economy before
2008 - Q ueen Elizabeth II strips Zimbabwe’s
President Robert Mugabe of his knighthood.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
Tsar Nicholas I of Russia (1796-1855);
Lord Louis Mountbatten, English naval
commander and statesman (1900-1979);
George Orwell (born Eric Arthur Blair),
British author (1903-1950); Sidney Lumet,
US film director (1924-2011); June Lockhart,
US actor (1925-); Eddie Floyd,
US singer (1935-); Judy Pollock,
Australian athlete (1940-); Carly
Simon, US singer (1945-); Phyllis
George, US television personality and
businesswoman (1949-); Tim Finn,
New Zealand-born singer (1952-);
Anthony Bourdain, American chef
and author (1956-); Craig Johnston, Australian
soccer player (1960-); Ricky Ger vais, British
comedian (1961-); George Michael, British
singer (1963-); Mikhail Youzhny, Russian
tennis player (1982-).
“ We owe to the Middle Ages the two worst
inventions of humanity: romantic love and
gunpowder.” — Andre Maurois, French
“All the nations will be gathered before Him,
and He will separate people one from another
as a shepherd separates the sheep from the
goats.” — Matthew 25.32
The death of Mr
Williams, a senior
citizen of Tainui
Street, Greymouth, occurred this morning.
He was 83. Mr Williams was born at Linton,
Ballarat, Victoria, and came to New Zealand
in 1900, going to Westport. He went to sea
for two years on overseas ships and returned
to Millerton where he took an active interest
in industrial unions. He was secretary of the
Millerton Miners’ Union for 13 years and also
a member of the miners’ federation executive
for several years.
Mr Williams came to Runanga in 1926 and
was a working shareholder in co-operative
mines in the district until 1943. The founder of
the Greymouth Pensioners’ Association, he was
a past president and secretary for eight years.
He was a foundation member of the New
Zealand Labour Party.
Mr Williams is sur vived by his wife
Margaret, four daughters Audrey, Vuy, Esma
and Margaret; and one son, Ray Moore
(California). Another son, Jack Williams paid
the supreme sacrifice in the Air Force in 1942,
Five Greymouth nurses have been successful
in the State examinations for nurses, first
professionals, held last month, the Nurses’ and
Midwives’ Board has announced. They are
nurses H M A’Court (honours), J M Hansen
(honours), N P M Mackel, M L Messenger
and M A Young. One Westport hospital nurse,
A M Reedy, also passed.
Feature of the Greymouth Miniature Rifle
Club’s shoot this week was an excellent target
of 100.9 shot by junior Murray Glen. G Howat
won the seniors with 97.5.
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
fter nearly 1000 years,
murder in the cathedral
is still luring visitors to
It was in the Canterbury
Cathedral in 1107 that
Archbishop Thomas Becket was killed
viciously by four knights who believed
they were doing the bidding of King
As a result, Becket became a martyr and
the cathedral a place of pilgrimage to his
The homicide was the subject of
Murder in the Cathedral, a verse drama
by T S Eliot, and was more famously
immortalised in Geoffrey Chaucer’s
14th-century work, The Canterbury Tales,
which focused on one such journey:
And specially from ever y shires ende
Of Englande to Caunterbur y they wende,
The holy blisful martir for to seke,
That hem hath holpen whan that they were
It is said that 100,000 pilgrims made
their way to the cathedral in 1420,
including, as the poem says in its last
line, the sick (seeke) whom the shrine
cured (hath holpen, or helped). Today,
Canterbury Cathedral draws one million
visitors a year.
With its sites, shops, and restaurants,
pubs and tea rooms concentrated largely
in its Old Town area, Canterbury is
a comfortable walking city, with a
population of about 150,000.
The River Stour runs through the city
and at some points is navigable for small
boats. Rowboats and punts (flat-bottomed
boats like gondolas) can be hired, usually
with a university student ser ving as
oarsman and guide.
But by far the biggest tourist attraction
is Canterbury Cathedral, founded in
597. It is a mar vellous edifice on spacious
property that also houses some buildings
of the King’s School, a renowned
The exterior of the cathedral, an
impressive 72m high, reflects Romanesque,
English Gothic and Gothic architectural
styles, with round and pointed arches,
blind arcades and pinnacles of the 14th-
century perpendicular Gothic nave.
The Trinity Chapel was built for the
Shrine of St Thomas, which stood from
1220 to 1538, when it was destroyed on
orders of King Henry VIII. The floor
of the current chapel has a set of inlaid
marble roundels representing zodiac signs,
months, virtues and vices. A candle marks
the spot of the shrine.
UNESCO World Heritage sites in
Canterbury include the cathedral along
with St Augustine’s Abbey (mostly
the ruins of the monastery where St
Augustine’s monks lived) and St Martin’s
Church, England’s oldest working parish
church. Another popular tourist site is
the Norman Canterbury Castle remains.
The castle was one of three original royal
castles of Kent, built after the Battle of
Hastings on the main Roman road from
Dover to London. This was the route
taken by William the Conqueror in 1066.
The medieval St Margaret ’s Church
now houses The Canterbury Tales, an
audiovisual presentation of five tales (in
modern English) from Chaucer’s most
colourful characters, using life-sized
character models: the miller, knight, nun’s
priest, wife of Bath and pardoner, with live
guides at the start (at Tabard Inn) and end
(at the shrine of Thomas Becket).
There is, however, little other evidence of
Chaucer in Canterbury, aside from a pub
by that name.
Another famous literary name with a
connection to Canterbury is Christopher
Marlowe, the Elizabethan poet and
playwright (Hero and Leander, The Tragic
History of the Life and Death of Doctor
Faustus) who was born in Canterbury in
1564 and attended King’s School there.
The city’s theatre house is named for
him and his death is noted at the clock
tower of St George’s Church. Marlowe
was baptised in the church, but its clock
tower is all that sur vived German bombs
in World War Two. The house believed
to be where the Marlowes lived for the
early years of Christopher’s life also was
destroyed in an air raid. In front of the
present Marlowe Theatre is a 19th-century
statue of a Muse (Marlowe is known as
the Muses’ darling) surrounded by small
effigies of characters from Marlowe’s plays.
Canterbury proves itself a charming and
comfortable small city, but it has a big
history. — AP
Canterbur y tale
PICTURE: Getty Images
A general view of Canterbury Cathedral.
This may give dedicated sun worshippers
reason for pause. A new study suggests that
regular tanning not only may raise the risk
of skin cancer but also may be addictive.
A study published recently found that
chronic exposure to ultraviolet radiation
triggers the release of endorphins — the
so-called feel-good hormones — that
function through the same biological
pathway as highly addictive opiate drugs
such as heroin and morphine.
The study involved laboratory mice,
but the researchers said they believe the
findings are applicable to people because
the biological response of skin to UV
radiation in mice is so similar to humans.
Regular UV radiation exposure led
to physical dependence and addictive
behavior in the mice, the study found.
The animals even exhibited withdrawal
symptoms — shaking, tremors and teeth
chattering — after being treated with a
drug that blocked the endorphin activity,
the researchers said.
Writing in the journal Cell, they said
the addictive nature of UV exposure “may
contribute to the relentless rise in skin
cancer incidence in humans”.
“There is this dangerous addictive
pathway operating,” dermatologist Dr
David Fisher, of Massachusetts General
Hospital and Har vard Medical School,
who led the study, said.
Fisher said in theory sun-related skin
cancer should be highly preventable merely
by reducing exposure, but the addictive
qualities of UV exposure may help explain
the dogged “sun-seeking behaviour” some
people display through outdoor and indoor
tanning and other pursuits.
“ Behavioral exposure to the sun is being
guided by influences that go past just
a desire to have a nice game of Frisbee
outside. There’s something else motivating
that behaviour,” Fisher added.
Exposure to ultraviolet rays through
sunlight and indoor tanning equipment
is considered a major risk factor for
skin cancer including melanoma. The
American Cancer Society said United
States melanoma rates have been rising for
at least 30 years, with about 76,000 news
cases and 9700 deaths forecast for 2014.
Cumulative damage from UV radiation
also can cause premature skin ageing in
the form of wrinkles, lax skin and brown
Exposure to UV rays stimulates
production of endorphins — the same
hormones stimulated by activities like
vigorous exercise. They turn on opiate-
related receptors via the same biological
pathway triggered by prescription
painkillers and other opiate drugs.
The researchers shaved the backs of the
mice and gave them a daily dose of UV
light — enough to induce tanning but not
burning — for six weeks. Bloodstream
endorphin levels rose within a week.
John Overstreet, executive director of
the Indoor Tanning Association, said the
study “ignores the benefits of exposure
to ultraviolet light, the most obvious of
which is the production of vitamin D
through your skin.”
“ It is also important to note that there
is no simple definition of addiction and
the identification of addictions requires a
substantial body of research. It is highly
unlikely that a single study could lead to a
sound conclusion on the matter. You can
take anything too far, that does not mean
it is an addiction,” O verstreet said.
Tanning may be addictive
Travelling for surger y
I was shocked to read about Mrs Allan’s
trip to Christchurch (Greymouth Star,
First, neither she nor anyone else should
be having an eye operation without a
family member or friend with them.
I had my first operation just after the
earthquake, in fact there was a good shake
the night before the operation at Southern
Cross. I could not see very well after the
drops were put in my eye at the clinic the
first day and once the operation was done
I lived in a fog, pad on one eye and could
not wear glasses to see out the other.
We were lucky the bus driver dropped
us off at our motel in Merivale, about two
blocks from St George’s, and we would
willingly have paid extra on the bus ticket
had we been asked.
If you tell them at the clinic what time
your bus leaves Riccarton Mall they will
make sure you are top of the list so you are
there in plenty of time. When I went there
were a number of people from Greymouth,
but all had cars.
People should be told that they need
someone with them, and that you will
need help to walk from the motel to the
clinic, plus taxi to and from the motel to
Southern Cross. We did not even know
that was where the operation was to be
done as it was not on papers we were
given. A needs to tell B so that C knows
what to expect.
I hope Mrs Allan, if she has to return,
has a much better time, and that any
others who have to take the trip get full
Having recently spent a month in our
local Greymouth Hospital I cannot
possibly speak highly enough of the
care and attention I received from the
dedicated staff in three different wards.
We are so fortunate with the calibre of
orthopaedic surgeons who come here, two
of whom operated on me, and to whom
I will always be indebted. Their being
here saved me a trip and long stay in
Our Greymouth Hospital is so
important and necessary to all who reside
on this side of the alps.
Excuse me if I sound a wee bit cynical
but after reading in the Greymouth Star
( June 11) about chickens infected with Tb,
I immediately thought, ‘well, there must
have been an excessive masting of white
clover or some such thing that caused an
explosion of predators and rodents, which
then moved in and infected all of the
This would be a great time for whoever is
responsible to move in and drop a wee bit
of 1080 around Kaihinu.
It would not be a lot worse than
dropping it on a car with picnickers in
attendance (Greymouth Star June 13),
which brings me to the point. Just another
gross mishandling of a deadly toxin, and
the question — who is going to be held
Will look for ward to hearing more.
I would like to comment on the
Greymouth Star article of June 18 on the
clinical leadership sur vey.
I had recently commented on the tragedy
of Geoff Mehrtens, who died aged 54
years. Anyone with relevant medical
knowledge would have said the death was
not due to natural causes. Yet, four and
a half years after his death we are still
waiting for a coroner’s inquest. I believe
the coroner was misled into believing
the death was due to natural causes.
Root causes were uncorrected and others
have suffered as a result of failure to take
Such incidents are not just a West
Coast DHB issue. In 2009, Christchurch
man John MacDonald died as result of
excessive bleeding following a road traffic
crash. He was on a trial anticoagulant
(blood thinning) medication called
Rivaroxaban (Prothrombinex agent
available in Greymouth and Buller). It
seems he did not receive a reversal agent
before a tube was inserted into his chest to
However, the coroner seems not to
have been provided with the relevant
information at the inquest. Instead
of education, the drug company and
researching cardiologist had been
blamed. This compromised preventative
actions and questioned the safety of
conducting such research in New
ASMS was made aware of other such
cases in 2010 but did not respond.
All the factors involved in why and
how the coroners were misled requires
speculation. Identification of the causes
requires more than leadership.
I have just read the announcement
where logs brought down by Cyclone Ita
will be recovered from some conser vation
land. I want to congratulate the ministers
involved, and in particular National Party
candidate Maureen Pugh.
Back in May, when Maureen contacted
Nick Smith the Minister of Conser vation,
I gave her a 0% chance of having common
sense become a factor in the House when
it came to removing wind-fallen logs from
the ground in the conser vation estate.
I should have known better. Maureen
Pugh has impeccable contacts and energy
to burn, and when you compare this
situation with the disaster in the early
2000s, when Sandra Lee was Minister
of Conser vation in a very green Labour
government, there were thousands of cubic
metres of windblown rimu on the ground
at Haast just south of Hannahs Clearing.
There were very similar circumstances, but
with a Labour government who would
not allow the wood to even be used as
firewood. You soon get to realise just what
a good MP she will make. I can tell you
the decision at the time was stupid and we
were a very frustrated community.
We need an MP who is connected and
has a view of the bigger picture to grow
our electorate. Maureen is experienced
and connected at the highest level and
this, along with hard work, converts into
representation. It is not all about biking
around tracks and casting a negative fog
over every issue. O ur MP has to focus on
just what makes our communities and
local economies tick.
This lady has a common sense approach
which she portrays in such a positive
manner. That is why she gets results. Well
Log recover y
I wish to publicly thank the Minister
of Conser vation, Nick Smith, Te
Ururoa Flavell, Maori Party and Peter
Dunne, United Future, for the common
sense approach to what has been an
extraordinary storm, causing more damage
up and down the West Coast than most
have seen in living memory.
My approach to Nick Smith on May 8
met with a rapid response and he moved
to amend the Conser vation Act, allowing
trees to be recovered rather than rot on the
However, the reaction from the Green
Party has been so extreme it can not be
taken seriously. They say: ‘ Wind-thrown
trees must be allowed to decompose
and recycle both their stored energy and
nutrients back into the environment, for
the benefit of our native wildlife, and the
forest itself. We will reverse any law passed
when we are in government ’.
There has never been such a clear
definition of the difference between the
National Government and a Green-
Labour-Internet-Mana etc option for
Issues like this make it abundantly clear
that our West Coast-Tasman electorate
cannot afford the terrorist type actions
of the Greens. We are a rural-based
economy. We need to use our water,
we need to use our minerals, and when
common sense dictates, we should
recover wind-thrown logs from the bush
to help pay for our conser vation effort.
There is no money tree at the bottom
of the garden to fund conser vation, and
the volume of wood that will be left in
the forest will not leave nature short-
I want to thank the members of the
public who have supported my approach
to the Minister of Conser vation
that resulted in what a number have
nicknamed the ‘Pugh Plan’. The
implementation will assist employment
opportunities right throughout our
region from extraction, milling, furniture
making and for timber that can be used
in the Christchurch rebuild. Best of all,
it will not rot on the ground when our
communities want to work.
National Party candidate
Links Archive June 24th 2014 June 26th 2014 Navigation Previous Page Next Page