Time and time again, it has been said – the three things we can all be certain of in life – death, taxes and change!
And depending on our circumstances, one of these may be more pressing than the others.
Oh for inspiration, for vision, for boldness and for a political party that has not only counted the pennies but has done the preparation and is ready to fly once it has the power. The steady-as-she-goes budget was hardly inspiring, it could have been devised by Bill English.
The Coalition was just five months old when commentators began their refrain: Stop whingeing about the defects of the last Government they said, as if these were minor failings. They most certainly are not and the licence given by them to Sir John Key to lambast Labour was very liberal – he was still at it in his third term as prime minister.
I’ve been stunned and amazed at the sheer number of President Donald Trump’s lies. Unfortunately for him the New York Times is counting. It found that in his first 10 months, he told six times as many falsehoods as President Obama. Trump told 103 separate untruths, many of them repeatedly, said the Times. Obama told 18 during his eight year Presidency. For some time, I’ve I wanted to better understand why people lie.
Although a surprising number of media sports writers appear to be wilfully ignorant, the rest of us know that some results are predictable. In the rugby world cup there are only eight teams who have a chance of winning. It’s not hard to work out why, they are much better than the rest. That Japan beat South Africa in the last world cup was the exception that proves the rule. But it also reinforces our belief that miracles can happen.
Democracy is under assault and in retreat around the globe, a crisis that has intensified as America’s democratic standards erode at an accelerating pace, according to Freedom in the World 2018, the latest edition of the annual report on political rights and civil liberties, released today by Freedom House.
I am embarrassed to admit that I am hooked on jigsaws. I have always thought them ridiculous. A picture is cut into small pieces that are then laboriously put together, briefly admired then broken up and returned to the box. (No wonder, after all that effort, that people sometimes frame them). This seems to be the occupation of lonely, bored, unimaginative, and rather odd people.
It’s 2 o’clock on a day so sunny that it confounds Aucklanders accustomed to their city’s moodiness. There’s not a cloud to be seen and on the Waterfront Viaduct, families stroll, gorge on takeaways or just sit and, over a drink, watch the passing parade. Not far away something much darker is on show in the stunning ASB Theatre. It holds 680 – and is close to capacity.