Voting with Values

I’m pleased that Vote Compass is again available to help us check which parties’ published policies best align with our own opinions and values.   This website has been developed by political scientists and is hosted by TVNZ.  It’s quick and easy to answer some questions about your views on various issues.  The site analyses your answers, then tells you how your views line up with the published policies of political parties.  I’d encourage everyone to try it, especially those who don’t have the time and energy to thoroughly check policies before they vote.

This year I found my views matched the Green Party 89%, Labour 80%, Mana 78%, and TOP 70% (down to Act 31%).   I can no longer access my Vote Compass results from the last election, but I do remember that my Green alignment then was over 90%, and Mana was the next closest.  Obviously something’s changed.  Not sure whether it’s the parties’ policies, the Vote Compass process, or my own ideas.

“Vote Compass helps an informed choice
so voters all can have their voice.”

Entrancing is the word for this book.  It took me a while to get into it and I even skim-read a few pages, but it soon had me hooked.  Set in Sweden during and after the second world war it deals with myth and mystery in a compelling way.  The characters are clearly depicted and demand the reader’s involvement.   The relationships are complex and real, especially those between the various mothers and their offspring.  Differences in race and class add another layer to the saga of boys growing to maturity.  A powerful novel, beautifully written and translated.

“A mother caring for her son
would do whatever must be done.”

Symbols of Spring

Today we walked along the daffodil lawn, where the flowers are just starting to come out.

By the bridge fern fronds are unfurling.

“It seems that spring is almost here
although the day is cold and drear.”

Great White Hunter

Ziggy was intrigued by four ducks on the road outside.  He stood on his hind legs and pawed at the window as he watched them.  Then he ran outside, onto the fence, and stood there with his tail swishing.

He’s never been a bird chaser, and ducks are definitely beyond his reach, but he likes to pretend.

“He is a hunter without fear
at least that’s how he would appear.”

‘Dorable Daisy

This cute car named Daisy caught my eye.  It reminded me of the Austin A35 I had in the 1970’s  She too was decorated with flowers and we named her Floribunda.  Sadly I don’t have a photograph – no digital cameras then.

Daisy’s owner told me she was shipped here from Tasmania, and her husband refused to disclo9se the cost of freight.

“I love a car with character
am glad the owner’s stuck with her.”

Wide Wings

The black swan was at the Margaret Mahy playground again today.  This time it was on the grass, and as I watched it spread its wings.

This made me think of the Tai Chi move ‘White Crane Spreads its Wings’.

“Perhaps the black swan knows the form
or maybe just likes to perform.”


Dining with Di

An old friend from Auckland was in town briefly, so four of us had dinner at the Carlton.

This pub, which has been completely rebuilt since the earthquakes, was the first in New Zealand to serve beer on tap and the first to have a beer garden.  Almost all the other diners were men.  Is this because the Carlton specialises in steaks?

Di and I have been friends since the early 1970s, and it’s very rarely I spend time with someone I’ve known that long.

“It’s great when an old friend appears
someone I’ve known for forty years.”