Genuine question: how far down from the summit is a mountain no longer sacred?

Guest post

Trampers seeking to climb Mt Ngauruhoe, or “Mt Doom”, will be asked to show “respect” for the mountain by giving up their quest.

The popular trek up Mt Ngauruhoe, a feature of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, is an added bonus for keen walkers who embark on the 20-kilometre journey along one of New Zealand’s nine Great Walks.

The mountain holds a special attraction for some visitors thanks to its famous role as Mt Doom in the Lord of the Rings.

But the Department of Conservation (DOC) wants people to stop walking up Ngauruhoe as its peak, along with Mt Ruapehu’s peak, are considered sacred.

DOC removed access signs to the peaks in October, and up to five rangers will be monitoring the area from Saturday.

DOC biodiversity services manager Bhrent Guy said the department was not telling people to stop climbing the mountain, but rangers would tell them “to respect [the mountain] by not going up there”.

It’s nice to show a bit of respect for other people’s feelings by not deliberately doing things that upset the sensibilities of a stone-age belief that a mountain is a person, but what practical limits do we have to set here? Read more »

Bob doesn’t approve of people who want more than one mother in law. Everyone else thinks they are nuts.

Bob McCoskrie loves meddling in other people’s love lives, when he isn’t misleading the court with his evidence.

His latest crusade is against people who want more than one mother in law:

Oh look! Yet another column by the mainstream media promoting and normalising polyamory.
But hey! Redefining marriage won’t lead to further distortions of the definition. That’s just “scaremongering” …. apparently.

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How about ordering some Whaleoil merch in time for Christmas?

This GROUND CREW Unisex 3/4 sleeve Raglan shirt inclusive of GST will cost you $44.84 NZD and if you buy it on its own the shipping to New Zealand from America will cost you only  $6.77 NZD if you live in Auckland.

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Little Irish gits who live in glass houses should avoid throwing stones, especially at glass factories….

Little Irish gits who live in glass houses should avoid throwing stones, especially at glass factories…

The announcement of a strategic review by Metro Performance Glass is “not good enough,” and its chairman should have already resigned, says fund manager Brian Gaynor.

The company this morning announced a strategic review of “all aspects of the company” and said chairman Sir John Goulter would not be seeking re-election at the end of his current term.

The company’s shares rose 2c to $1.04 on the news.

Mr Gaynor, whose firm Milford Asset Management controls about 6.8% of Metro Glass, said the announcement amounted to an admission of failure by the board.

“As a shareholder we’re very disappointed they have to make this announcement,” he said.

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Greg Sayers calls out Goff and the Council

Greg Sayers is making a name for himself with plain speaking about Phil Goff’s dud council:

A wage blowout at Auckland Council has Rodney councillor Greg Sayers warning ratepayers they should be concerned.

For another consecutive year since Auckland Council came into being in 2010, the council’s staff numbers are up, as is the wage bill – from $615 million in 2011 to $853m this year.

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No hard feelings John, but no one gives a stuff what you think anymore

Next leader? Who cares?

John Key’s phone must have stopped ringing, so he’s decided to come out and offer up his advice for coalition negotiations.

Sir John Key may describe himself as little more than an interested observer, but the former prime minister has been talking to his successor during the post-election period.

Key said it was only natural given his longstanding relationship with caretaker Prime Minister Bill English, but refused to say whether he had offered any advice on coalition negotiations.

“It’s natural I had a discussion with him, and we’ll probably leave it about there,” he said, speaking at new Trading Room at the University of Canterbury on Monday.

An alumnus of the university, Key was tasked with opening the facility at the Business School – a simulation of a trading floor complete with stock tickers and rolling business news.

Read more »

Be surprised to find out where NZ First’s support really comes from

While we’re waiting for Winston, and we’re sick of “experts” guessing what will happen next, it’s nice to see someone do some original work:

In the map above, the green colour represents polling places where party vote support for NZ First was below the national vote, and the purple indicates where it was above.

The first thing the map reveals is a clear urban-rural divide.

In the big cities, support for NZ First is generally below the country as a whole. However, support for NZ First is generally above average in the rural, more sparsely populated areas.

Read more »

Shhh. Don’t tell Phil Goff, but Aucklanders donated nearly $1m in 30 days

Nearly $1 million worth of speeding fines have been issued at Auckland’s Waterview Tunnels in a little over one month.

Police operate four speed cameras at the twin 2.4km long tunnels, one at each entrance and exit.

Figures given to Checkpoint under the Official Information Act show 9756 fines worth $948,220 total were issued between 21 July, when the cameras were turned on, and 31 August.

That works out to about 0.6 percent of the 1,520,767 vehicles that travelled through the tunnels in that period.

0.6% of drivers fail the most basic stupidity test then.  The cameras aren’t hidden.  The speed limit is clearly posted.   Read more »

Whaleoil General Debate

Morning everyone, and welcome to Whaleoil’s daily General Debate post (another one called Backchat will start at 6pm). To participate you’ll need to register a free Disqus account.

There are some rules, and if there is one thing about Whaleoil that you need to know is that these rules are dispassionately and strictly enforced.  (No really.  Just the tiniest of slip ups and you’re toast.  This place is brutal. No sense of humour what-so-ever. You’ve been warned.)

Faces of the Day

Credit: Luke