Why Gareth Hughes and his ilk will never be welcome in South Canterbury

via AA

via AA

And most other places in the country, for that matter.

South Cantabrians just love their cars

Latest vehicle registration figures from the New Zealand Transport Authority show there are more than enough vehicles registered in South Canterbury for every man, woman and child to be on the road at the same time.

Between them, the Timaru, Waimate and Mackenzie districts had an estimated population of 56,550 in June last year, while there were 58,325 registered vehicles, 1100 more than the previous year.

Cars and vans accounted for just over 43,000 vehicles, with 323 buses, 11,248 trucks, utes and goods vans, 2325 motorcycles, 912 motor caravans and almost 500 mopeds.

Vehicle registration figures throughout South Canterbury have been slowly rising over the past five years, with vehicle numbers in Timaru increasing by only 100 or so from 2008 to 2011, when the figure shot up by 500. They rose by more than 800 in the latest period.

And with all those vehicles, a few kilometres were clocked up – 461.8 million kilometres on state highways in the region and 228.95 million on council roads.

Over the past decade fewer people have been killed and seriously injured on state highways in all three districts.

While Gareth stands on beaches holding hands to protest the drilling for oil we don’t just need for petrol but a huge amount of industrial processes, and Metiria and Norman beat us all around the ears with the idea that we have to stop building roads and start making more train sets, the harsh truth is that this country isn’t suitable for trains.

We’re all too spread out.

Even most of Auckland wouldn’t be served by trains if it was allowed to exist as per Len’s wet dreams.

But they’re coming for your money.  They want to shut down wealth creating drilling and mining, and the want you out of your cars.

This may find a fertile audience in the leafy suburbs, but for the majority of New Zealanders, public transport will never be a viable solution.

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.