You know you’re in an unhealthy relationship with the internet when. . .


For a while there before the election I was in danger of developing an unhealthy attachment to my keyboard, but now I’ve got a life again I can go not just hours but days  and even longer without a fix.

Not so this bloke who stole a laptop when its owner wouldn’t let him use it to check Facebook.

Hickey’s last post


Bernard Hickey is retiring from his blog Show Me The Money.

I understand his reasons – the demands of his job and a desire for more time at home – but I will miss his contribution to the blogosphere.

In his last post he asks John Key to trust us with the truth about the economy.

I think his view is very pessimistic one and I don’t agree with his suggestion Key cancel’s the tax cuts but I do agree with the need to direct spending to the things which really matter, like education and infrastructure.

Plunketline funded for 24/7 service


National has delivered on another election pledge with today’s announcement that Plunketline will be funded to enable it to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

A media release from Health Minister Tony Ryall says:

The extended service is being funded through a grant of $3.75 million over 15 months to the end of March next year ($3 million per annum). By that time, a review of Well Child parent information programmes will have been completed and new contracting arrangements will be in place.

The parent information review could extend support services to include e-mail and online information and chatrooms.

The help line is an invaluable service for parents and caregivers of young children and the 24 hour/seven day service from Plunket nurses is much better than the general health helpline which the previous government funded instead.

There may well be a place for on-line asssistance too but any of these services must be in addition to not a replacement for home and clinic visits.

If that much over and misused word icon could be applied to any institution in New Zealand it is Plunket.

For more than 100 years it has provided an invaluable service to families and one of its strengths is that Plunket nurses go to every home which gives them an insight they couldn’t get in a clinic.

Equally important, because they provide a universal service to every home and every child their is no stigma about their visits in the way that there might be with other agencies such as Public Health or welfare.

I’m delighted with the Plunketline funding and hope it is just the start of policies which will not just maintain but strengthen the services and support provided to families from Plunket.

If, as is inevitable, this will cost more then funding could be diverted from the Families Commission.

The President’s new toy


The Inquiring Mind starts every morning with a quote  and cartoon of the day.

Today he doesn’t show a cartoon, instead he links to this depiction of Obama’s blackberry.

I suspect there’s many a leader who would like a customised one of their own.

Which buttons would John Key have?

Push to activate busy signal for incoming call from Peter Dunne or play pre-recorded mesage saying love to but Labour spent the lot in response to requests for more from the public service, perhaps?

Life out-satirises satire


The Dim Post  tops his blog with this quote from Juvenal 1:  It’s difficult not to write satire.

Not PC gave an irony alert  last week when he observed, You just can’t make this stuff up.. . when noting the headline Rubgy: Race rule may stop Maori playing Boks.

Now we have another example of life out-satirising satire with the story that police have had to change a test after one of the recruits got hold of it and circulated it to others.

And a special mention for stating the obvious to the spokesman who said:

. . .  it is disappointing applicants would think it is appropriate to join the police through dishonest practices.

If you tried to put that in a work of fiction you’d be told it was too far-fetched.

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