Monday, 22 April 2013

IS THIS APARTHEID?


A fair go demanded for New Zealanders living in Australia

New Zealand Citizens living in Australia are experiencing discrimination in areas such as employment, education, training, student loans, social security, social services, and access to Australian citizenship as a result of the amendments to the Social Security Act.

As a result of these changes, many people who live, work, pay taxes, and raise families in Australia are now never able to enjoy equal rights simply because they come from New Zealand. In short, the 2001 amendments have made an underclass out of New Zealanders.   We are asking for a fair go by being recognized as residents under the Social Security Act and as permanent residents under the Australian Citizenship and Migration Act.
Peter’s Piece

If this is not an embarrassment for the governments of Australia and New Zealand, then it should be.
Australians living in New Zealand have long enjoyed equal status with New Zealanders and the stance of the Australian Government smacks of one-eyed racism.
I urge all New Zealanders and Australians who believe in a fair go to sign the petition by clicking on this link: 

A TRUCKER'S NIGHTMARE


How not to turn a semi
This almost happened to me in 2001.
U.S. Truck Drivers, Family & Friends's photo.
I had run just over 4,000 miles in the previous seven days and I was looking for a shipper on a lonely country road in Georgia at about 1 am. Then I realized I was on the wrong road and looked for a place to turn back. Continuing would have taken me thirty miles round the block.
Finding a narrow road that intersected at an angle, I attempted to back into the side road, stopped and got out to check with a torch, and found that I had ten foot ditch between the driving wheels and the tandems.
Back behind the wheel again, I eased back onto the road and opted for the extra thirty miles.

You can read about this and other misadventures in my book 
Highway America – the Life of a Trucker.
HAPPY READING
 
 Now available as an e-book from:

A WEEKEND IN NEW ZEALAND


Full-on Downunder

Peter and Win have had a busy weekend in New Zealand.

It started on Saturday 20 April in the afternoon with the club day for Hauraki Country Music Club in Ngatea. Guest artists Craig Robertson and Andy Mac from Thames kept the crowd on the edge of their seats. Peter’s two numbers were Don’t Take Your Guns to Town and Ghost Riders. (One young cowboy and two old cowboys)

Dennis Marsh
Saturday night, and Win and Peter were in Pukekohe for the Dennis Marsh-Eddie Lowe concert which was a sell-out. These two entertainers are currently numbers one and two on the New Zealand music scene and Dennis performed particular well after we fed him up on Pizza before the show.

After the show we drove in our motorhome to stay overnight with our friends Keith and Heather. Next morning after a lovely breakfast we called on Dennis and Yvonne who live in the same locality.

For a sample of Dennis Marsh click here: Dennis Marsh

Next we called to see old friends at the Pokeno Market where we used to be regulars before life got too hectic. Then it was on to Hamilton for a meeting of Hamilton Writers and to hear guest speaker James George, a creative writing tutor from Auckland.
James George

Unfortunately (good for the drought-stricken farmers) the heavens opened during James's address and he had to compete with thunder and heavy rain on awnings above the garden center café. But James has a powerful voice and he stayed the distance like an unfazed auctioneer in a cattle stampede. He had lots of excellent advice for budding novelists.



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Thursday, 18 April 2013

AFTER BEWITCHING HOUR


A nocturnal nomad 

An elderly man was stopped by the police around 2 am and was asked where he was going at that time of night.

The man replied, "I'm on my way to a lecture about alcohol abuse and the effects it has on the human body, as well as smoking and staying out late."

The officer then asked, "Really? Who's giving that lecture at this time of night?"

The man replied, "My wife."

From Nev Blakeborough on Facebook




He could have had a great time staying 

home with this great read from 

the Smashwords Premium Catalogue


Now available as an e-book from:

Sunday, 7 April 2013

HOW TO RUN THE WORLD


Wow, this girl has a great plan! 
WRITTEN BY A 21 YEAR OLD FEMALE
This was in the Waco Tribune Herald, Waco , TX , Nov 18.

PUT ME IN CHARGE . . .

Put me in charge of food stamps. I'd get rid of Lone Star cards; no cash for Ding Dongs or Ho Ho's, just money for 50-pound bags of rice and beans, blocks of cheese and all the powdered milk you can haul away. If you want steak and frozen pizza, then get a job.

Put me in charge of Medicaid. The first thing I'd do is to get women Norplant birth control implants or tubal ligations. Then, we'll test recipients for drugs, alcohol, and nicotine. If you want to reproduce or use drugs, alcohol, or smoke, then get a job.

Put me in charge of government housing. Ever live in a military barracks? You will maintain our property in a clean and good state of repair. Your home" will be subject to inspections anytime and possessions will be inventoried. If you want a plasma TV or Xbox 360, then get a job and your own place.

In addition, you will either present a check stub from a job each week or you will report to a "government" job. It may be cleaning the roadways of trash, painting and repairing public housing, whatever we find for you. We will sell your 22 inch rims and low profile tires and your blasting stereo and speakers and put that money toward the "common good.."

Before you write that I've violated someone's rights, realize that all of the above is voluntary. If you want our money, accept our rules. Before you say that this would be "demeaning" and ruin their "self esteem," consider that it wasn't that long ago that taking someone else's money for doing absolutely nothing was demeaning and lowered self esteem.

If we are expected to pay for other people's mistakes we should at least attempt to make them learn from their bad choices. The current system rewards them for continuing to make bad choices.

AND While you are on Gov't subsistence, you no longer can VOTE! Yes, that is correct. For you to vote would be a conflict of interest. You will voluntarily remove yourself from voting while you are receiving a Gov't welfare check. If you want to vote, then get a job.

Peter’s Piece

Wow!

This arrived in my inbox today and I was told that if I didn’t pass it it on I lacked guts.

I’d rather pass it back to its originator and see if that person has the guts to accept that the whole things is a load of vindictive nonsense.

Peter at the controls of a
Boeing737 flight simulator
Firstly, the person who turned this into a circulating email is sexist. The inference at the start is that a female is not normally good at writing or having an opinion.

However, if the writer really was only 21 that explains quite a lot. At age 21 many young people can be influenced by what others say without having the experience and maturity to form their own opinions on complex matters.

This particular 21 year-old obviously has never had to make do with anything less than the very best that life and fortunate parents have to offer. In other words she comes from a family that can afford to pay the tax, but begrudges paying tax.

Almost every promise she makes (she’s a politician now) would be broken if she were elected. Almost everything that she rants on about would be unjustified, harsh and, in any event, unworkable and undemocratic.

Does she have any idea of the bureaucracy that would be needed to administer the voucher system that she wants? What would be the point in spending billions to save mere millions while causing even more hardship?

I just hope that this girl with the poisoned mind grows up soon and that it won’t be as a result of sudden unemployment, sickness, loss of family, natural disaster, traffic accident, or unwanted pregnancy.

Meanwhile, pay your taxes, young lady, and be thankful that you are able to pay taxes, because there may be a day when you are no longer able to pay. That will be the day that you grow up.


A TWIST OF FATE


Readers race through this spell-binding thriller, eager to see
if a vicious serial killer will ever be brought to justice.


A Twist of Fate
By Peter Blakeborough


Bob Asker is running for his life. He was a young man set to go places as a businessman, but now he is looking for places to hide, places to make fast money, and places to hunt for Bryce Russell. 

Asker has been sentenced to die for Russell’s rape and murder of Heather Brownlee, Asker’s teenage sweetheart.

Asker and Russell both want freedom and to get it one will use political power, the other the power of real money. They are big-stakes gamblers, one brash and reckless, the other cold and calculating.

A Twist of Fate will have you spellbound all the way to the final, surprising, twist of fate.

Here is a sample from A Twist of Fate by Peter Blakeborough:

Bob Asker wanted to stay and help the prison guards slumped in the cab of the crashed prison van – if they were still alive – but he knew that running would be his only chance to cheat the Mount Eden hangman and bring Bryce Russell to justice for murdering poor Heather.
Cars had stopped at the infamous Bombay ‘Collision Crossroads’. The guards might be saved. Two men started to chase him. They seemed to gain on him as he stumbled across the potato paddock. But they were much older than his sixteen years and soon slowed to a walk. Bob kept running.  If he could vault over the fence and go for the gully he’d have them licked.
He stopped suddenly in his tracks.
He had no food or drink and only his miserably thin prison clothes to keep him warm during the night. What if it froze? Something would turn up. It was farming country. Farmers leave doors open, things lying around. He ran on and the men gave up the chase.
Breathing hard, he pressed on toward some trees.
In the fading light Bob saw a horse with a canvas blanket on its back.
The horse didn’t really need a blanket to keep warm – not like a thin-skinned human who could die from exposure in a wintry blast.
He spoke gently to the horse.
‘You’re a fine looking fella, aren’t you?’
He edged closer, cautiously reaching out to stroke its head.
‘How would you like to share your blanket with me, old fella?’
A moment later he slipped the blanket off and gave the animal a friendly smack on the rump to send it on its way.
 The night sky was clear and the moon was full. He was confident that he could put a lot of distance between himself and the authorities by sunrise.
He was tired, hungry and thirsty by the time he saw a farmer’s milking shed in the distance. The farmhouse was visible in another direction. He moved quietly to avoid alerting the farm dogs.
As expected the shed had a large stainless steel vat that was partly filled with milk. He lifted the lid and scooped up a handful of the refreshing protein-laden liquid. It was delicious. He scooped up another handful and looked around for a container. A shaft of moonlight fell on a shelf lined with empty beer bottles. He washed one of them under a tap and filled it with milk. In the moonlight he could see a hand-written sign on the vat giving the farmer’s name and dairy company number.
‘Well, thanks for the milk, Mr. Carlson. You’ll never know how generous you’ve been. Bloody good milk too. Thanks mate,’ he said aloud.
Instinctively he turned quickly to see if anyone was listening and came face to face with a massive Jersey bull quietly watching him, its huge head and horns protruding over the stockyard rail.
‘Shit! Don’t scare me like that, old man,’ he said when he recovered from the shock.
The bull snorted and pawed the ground. A dog barked in the distance. It was time to leave. He followed a hedge on the side shaded from the moon and heard no more from the bull or dog.
Bob Asker climbed a hill and started a long descent on the other side. Miles away he could see car lights moving along a road. He thought the lights were to the south. To the east he could see a lonely light in a farmhouse and he walked towards it taking care to walk as quietly as possible. One never knew when a trap might be sprung from the shadows . . . .


The 436 page print edition has sold out.
A Twist of Fate is now available as an e-book from Smashwords.com
To download an another free sample, or the complete book for
only $4.99 USD just click here
A Smashwords Five Star novel      


Wednesday, 3 April 2013

JUSTICE PERVERTED


New Zealand evidence planter dies
By Anna Leask / NZ Herald
 
Inspector Hutton at the Crewe murder scene in 1970 / Photo NZ Herald
The policeman found to have planted evidence that led to the wrongful conviction of Arthur Allan Thomas for the murders of Harvey and Jeannette Crewe in 1970 has died.
The Herald has learned that former Detective Inspector Bruce Hutton, 83, died in Middlemore Hospital late on Sunday night after a short illness.

Mr Hutton was the officer in charge of the homicide inquiry after the Crewes were murdered in their home at Pukekawa in Waikato in 1970.
Mr Thomas was convicted of the crime in two trials before being pardoned . . . .
Full story: NZ Herald

Peter’s Piece

Bruce Hutton’s handling of the Crewe case became the turning point of the public perception of New Zealand Police conduct.

Prior to 1970 police enjoyed a high reputation and to many they could do no wrong.
But in the decade following the Crewe murders that reputation took a tumble as campaigners, led by Pat Booth of the Auckland Star, fought to have Arthur Thomas freed.  

The police reputation suffered even more after retired Australian Justice Robert Taylor sitting as a Royal Commission found not only that Thomas should never have been charged, but also that he had been convicted on evidence planted by detectives.

If the police reputation was not already suffering enough they added to their woes by trying to tough it out; refusing to reopen the case, refusing to investigate the offending officers and claiming that all was well within their ranks. One could easily ask, who did they think they were fooling?

No doubt the police and politicians feared an opening of the floodgates if they admitted the error of their ways, but changing public opinion opened the floodgates in spite of police recalcitrance. Since Arthur Thomas was freed there has been an unprecedented number campaigns to free wrongly convicted prisoners, many of them successful.

New Zealand Police can only restore their image by openly admitting past wrongdoing, rooting out the offenders and establishing a genuine police culture where noble cause corruption has no place.

The Royal Commission was in no doubt that Inspector Bruce Hutton and Detective Len Johnston planted the cartridge case after pressure from Bob Walton, their superior. By the time Thomas was exonerated Walton had become the Commissioner and was unlikely to reopen a case that could have had implications for himself.

Walton was as guilty as Hutton and Johnston. The whole thing was a set up to keep up the conviction rate and gain promotion and royal honors.

But the story may not end there. Several writers have put forward theories that are difficult to discredit linking one of the detectives to the real murderer.

Meanwhile the Commissioners who have sat on their hands since Commissioner Walton include Ken Thompson, Malcolm Churches, John Jamieson, Richard Macdonald, Peter Doone, Rob Robinson, Steve Long (acting), Howard Broad and the incumbent Peter Marshall.

To Police Commissioner Peter Marshall I have this piece of advice: Get a sign placed on your desk, or over your office door, The buck stops here.

Harvey and Jeanette Crewe, and daughter Rochelle, would probably appreciate that.


The Crewe case has parallels with the plot in this novel


Available now as an e-book from: