What happened New Zealand?
Did you just suddenly forget that 185 people were killed in the 2011 Christchurch earthquake?
Did you suddenly forget that thousands of families are still living on a knife-edge because of government failings and inept indecision from the council?
Did you suddenly forget that vast swathes of cash are being plundered in to ridiculous things like rebuilding the ChristChurch Cathedral?
Talking to a friend a few weeks ago, she mentioned a “detached” feeling I’m sure the rest of the country feels towards the plight of Canterbury residents. As a member of the Christchurch Diaspora myself, now living in Auckland, I can understand it. Almost.
Gerry Brownlee has clearly forgotten all of the above, though.
The Earthquake Recovery Minister said that he was "sick and tired" of the "carping and moaning" from TC3 residents over his lack of empathy or action. According to my former employer The Press, he said “there were 27,000 people in TC3 land and only 10,000 of those were likely to need new foundations.”
Well, heaven forbid that more than 10,000 families, homeowners, business owners and landlords would want something done about their situation promptly and reasonably, and without the foul and inconsiderate tones of Mr Brownlee.
He attempted an apology, but then went on to justify his earlier statement.
This is precisely the kind of willful disregard for duty and disrespect of constituents that I wrote about a few weeks ago, and we ought to expect more of a man in such a powerful role, not just that he carries out his tasks as a minister with the utmost integrity, but that he handles his temper and doesn’t slide in to the curse of the reactionary.
On top of this, the establishment is again sticking it to beleaguered Christchurch residents by funding a $4.9 million, six-part drama series for TV3 on the earthquakes.
As I’ve said before, good money is being spent, or is being dedicated to ridiculous, superfluous, trivial, and arbitrary tasks when real Cantabrians are not getting the support they need.
As Mike Coleman from We Can pointed out, "In terms of good investigative journalism and highlighting the issues of affected communities, we've had none of that. So why not put a couple of million in finding out what's really going on for folk across Christchurch."
NZOA CEO Jane Wrightson says locals will have a ‘big input’ in the shows. Will that input consist of employing Christchurch locals as part of the crew and cast of the production? Heaven knows there are enough qualified and intelligent people without jobs.These are empty words and empty promises. A drama series, no doubt carrying those fateful and truth-bending words ‘Based On A True Story’, only has one purpose: entertainment, and that’s an affront to the integrity and true grit of Cantabrians.
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