The ultimate reality experience
A new structure
The Security Council of the United Nations has an interesting structure.
Made up of 15 members, 5 of them permanent, its ability to make democratic decisions is frequently thwarted by permanent members with the power of veto.
These days one or more of those five seems to prefer military options, ahead of diplomacy, as a first response to global problems.
To limit the power of veto and to bring home the consequences of bad decision making I have a solution.
MOAB, or the mother of all bombs, should be placed at the centre of the round table around, which members meet.
Members, with the power of veto, should all be seated in direct sight of each other and of MOAB, the elephant in the room.
Each veto button would be connected, via a timer, to the MOAB trigger.
One press would start the countdown and a second would cancel it.
In "game show" tradition, as well as a boost to TV viewership, each time the veto is activated its cancel time is reduced for the next push of the button.
To allow for a member doing the unthinkable this meeting would have to be relocated to an isolated island far far away but with full TV coverage, of course, for the ultimate "reality experience"!
MOAB would ensure that security, for council members, had then become very personal.
This would surely nudge decision making back in favour of diplomacy, over violence, and restore democracy to the decision making process. Let us hope that MOAB the elephant lives to be very old!
Regarding the decision of the Cromwell Memorial Hall, I would just like to say how proud I am of Shirley Calvert, Werner Murray and Annabel Blaikie in supporting Robin Dicey's notice of motion.
This is by far the most responsible approach from a community board that I have seen in a long time!
The previous board's approach of a $5 million upgrade for the current hall was completely short sighted for the future of this town, it's growth and opportunities that an upgrade could simply not address.
I know that this is not a popular decision for many, however, if it was your house what would you want the caretakers to look at?
A remodel/upgrade that would cost the earth or a new build?
Based off the deliverable of the previous board - aka town entrance - could we trust that it would even get a front door or a floor for that matter?
If past deliverable's from the previous community board is anything to go by an upgrade would certainly only lead to more disappointment, and all so it comes under budget.
So congratulations and thank you to those that made the tough decision to ensure that the asset base of this community will be upheld to the highest standard, whilst considering what the available money can deliver at this point in time; looking to the future and investing it as wisely as possible is the most responsible thing to do.
The PR spin
When one reads the column and six-month report card for the council, by Mayor Tim Shadbolt, there are some points that should not pass without comment.
The lowest level of people making submissions on the annual plan does not mean that ratepayers must be OK with the way councillors and the council are managing future activities.
That is just PR spin. Just as a low turn out in an election doesn't mean everyone is happy with the status quo.
It could mean that individuals and small groups feel that making a submission never changes anything, with councillors and their council advisors, already know best.
The Retail Strategy was formally adopted at the last meeting.
Why was that done in a "public excluded" session and no media present?
How do ratepayers ever get to know how their councillors are responding to their duties if most of the full council meetings are done behind closed doors?
Kakaporium and Tuatara facility has a feasibility study under way. I can recall that that was floated as part of a new $42m plus museum facility during the last council term and was subject to much opposition.
Why is this being reviewed again without any suggestion of cost or reference to a joint facility with a new museum and Anderson Park replacement?
If part of the central business district upgrade is to include an inner city art gallery, then that should be where the Anderson Park artworks could be housed.
Nobby Clark (Spokesperson)
Invercargill Ratepayers Advocacy Group