Some recet letters to the Dominion Post

I'm unsure of Joe Bennett's awareness of current affairs. His 'Trump cannot be saved again' (Opinion 22 March), relies on information no more recent than about two months old.

He has swallowed the Jan 6 Committee version of 'Insurrection' events and pays no attention to the forensic analysis of CCTV footage from that day. Footage which calls the whole nasty Democrat charade out for what it is. Two instances:

Firstly: Officer Brian Sicknik of the Capitol Police, who was supposed to have been bashed to death by Trump supporters, is seen multiple times on tape going about his duties in a calm, deliberate manner. Regrettably Sicknik did die, but it was several days later following two strokes unrelated to his police duties.

Secondly: The be-horned QAnon Shaman Jacob Charnsley, who is supposed to have led the Capitol violence, is seen being given a guided tour of the building by officers who actually opened doors for him.


Your cartoon depiction (14 March), of Chloe Swarbrick as the 'politician most likely to outshine her leaders' is remarkable.

Would she achieve such a profile without this paper's tireless promotion of her?

Any political snippet that can be bent to excuse the publication of Swarbricks photo, is dealt with accordingly.


I find it odd that the Kerekes family are facing deportation, because their innovative cafe business didn't make the progress planned.

I see in the news that hospo is booming post-pandemic, after being in the doldrums for two years. Even national TV news featured an item where a cafe owner says: 'Be patient with us as we cope with a new normal'.

If that plea can be made by the cafe industry generally, why should the situation where the cafe owners are migrants, fall on deaf ears?

If corner dairies, now very much in the news for the wrong reasons, can be operated almost exclusively by migrants at very marginal profitably, escape some kind of success-test, why are the Kerekes being treated so poorly?

Every few years, we hear the tragic tale of four or five teenagers killed in a car crash. If one of them has a licence, it will be a Learner grade, at best. A few months later we read about the Coroner explaining to bereft parents, how the adolescent brain isn’t capable of making good decisions – especially under peer pressure. ‘Alcohol may have been a factor’ is a normal subtext to the Coroner’s remarks. How many judges on the Supreme Court, which told us voting age restrictions were discriminatory, have ever sat as Coroner in one of these devastating episodes?

The Green Bill to lower the voting age to sixteen, is nothing less than voter-trafficking. Not people across a state border to get an electoral advantage like Blair and now Biden, but similar. The Green’s tactic is cynical and confirms why they field photogenic young List candidates. It’s against the possibility that one day the voters will come. Our print media seem incapable of publishing anything that even remotely touches on the Green Party, without featuring a Chloe Swarbrick at her winsome best. Teenagers automatically gravitate to the ‘glamour factor’.

I will not vote for any party that is prepared to support this monstrosity.


The leading article 'Threats to NZ hashed out' (1 November), quotes SIS boss Rebecca Kitteridge, as saying the issues are split 'fairly equally' between white supremacists and faith-inspired threats.

Attacks by just one faith-inspired group accounted for 11,210 killed in 2021. This means, if Ms Kitteridge is deploying her resources wisely, that white supremacists and all other religions killed at least that number in that year.

Strange that we have not heard more about this slaughter.


I must confess a quiet chuckle when I heard the news that funding for the Winn Shakespeare Festival was being cut.

The reason cited, is that Shakespeare depicts monarchical structures inappropriate to modern NZ.

I recall when I taught English in China, a distraught, under pressure student knocking on my apartment door on a Saturday morning. She was an English Major and part of the sophomore curriculum was in-depth study of one of Shakespeare's plays.  The work that year, was 'The Merchant of Venice' and my flustered Chinese friend was scheduled to give a short talk on the 'Character of Shylock' at 8am on Monday. The Shakespeare section was taught entirely in English. This was at a state-run university in Communist China. You can imagine that just getting the conversation past the traditional enmity between Jews and Christians was an effort.

If the Chinese can see an understanding of Shakespeare as an important insight into Western culture, why are we so coy?


The news item: 'Teachers want racist, discriminatory system to be abolished in schools from 2030' News 5 October, is incomplete. What isn't mentioned is the discrimination that abolishing streaming would have towards the more able and motivated students. These brighter kids would effectively be held hostage by lower-achieving and possibly disruptive classmates and the accompanying diversion of teaching effort.

The teacher group promoting this move, has cleverly bundled into their package, opposition to bulk funding and charter schools. Both of these, if introduced, would have the effect of showing which teachers achieve positive outcomes for their students and which do not.


In common with most critics of President Trump, Andrew Gunn 'When the challenge for the satirist is that plenty of stuff writes itself' Opinion 30 July, can't seem to bring himself to inform us which Covid vaccine and booster went into his delicate arm. Was it one developed under Trump's 'Operation Warpspeed' or another - perhaps Russian or indeed Chinese?

Would Trump have allowed the shambolic evacuation of Kabul that Joe Biden presided over, or the porous Southern border which is only now getting Democrat attention because border states are bussing arrivals to Washington and New York?

Mr Gunn seems not to have noticed that previously virulent anti-Trump media in the US is subtly retooling itself to a more neutral stance as it realises that compred to Biden, Pelosi and Harris, Trumps practical approach to issues was redeemingly frank and issues focussed.


The news item: 'US soprano rejects Verona role in blackface row' (World 19 July), is a bit hard to follow. It seems that the singer Angel Blue, wasn't even in the Aida production, she was protesting against. Blue described the faceblacking of the singer undertaking the title role in Aida as 'offensive, humiliating and racist'. I'm no opera buff but wasn't Aida a Nubian princess? I imagine a black complexion would be ethnically correct for a Nubian, in addition to having great visual impact against the Egyptian royal court of the other cast members.

I'm surprised she didn't also object to the production being mounted in Verona. Isn't that the setting for Romeo and Juliet?  Juliet was, after all, only thirteen, when engaged in her tragic love affair with sixteen-year-old Romeo. Angel Blue might also have empathised with a black Aida given that she had been taken to the Egyptian court as a slave.