Monthly Archives: August 2010

Keep Neurosurgery in Dunedin

Here is a video from the Keep Neurosurgery in Dunedin meeting tonight.

Join the facebook page for more info or check out blog by Samuel Mann.

For photos of the night check out my flickr account.

Paul S Allen

Anne Kolbe Speaking at the public meeting at the Dunedin Town Hall tonight.


Impromptu thoughts while out for a walk in Dunedin NZ,  on the subject of the opportunities we have to discover new things, just by stopping and looking around.

Paul S Allen

Follow this link to google maps if you would like to visit Palmers Quarry Garden

Catching The Wind

There are many circumstances that would discourage us but knowing how to read and use them can empower us to achieve great goals. The windsurfer in this clip uses the wind to generate speed where the observer is cold and battered by the same wind. One sees a problem the other an opportunity.

Paul S Allen

Catching The Wind

Windsurfing on Otago Harbour, Dunedin, New Zealand.

Filmed from Portsmouth Drive looking northeast, in the background you can see the new stadium being built.

Video: ©Paul S Allen 2010
Music: ©Paul S Allen 2008

Proud To Be South D

South Dunedin is one of the poorest areas of New Zealand, but contained within the area is a vast amount of talent and a diverse and caring community.

“South Dunedin’s Got Talent” is a chance to share in celebration of all people within our community. It is to give pride to an area tarnished by monetary poverty. It shows again that you have to go beneath the surface to see the real talent and the warmth from a caring and supportive community.

I am proud to be South D(unedin)

Paul S Allen

Winning acts from South Dunedin’s Got Talent 2010

Songs and Dance supplied and performed by individuals/groups as part of a public talent show to build the profile of the many talented people in South Dunedin.

Proud to be South D.
Dunedin New Zealand

Economics: Have We Got It Wrong?

A brief review of a presentation by Geoff White, the general manager of Trade Aid Importers Ltd.

Geoff White

This presentation was given as part of the BNZ Business Seminar Series  organised by the School of Business , University of Otago 10 August 2010.

The background was set by an explanation that all international commerce could be traced back to King Henry VIII. He then traced the history of economic development from then to the present (as a brief overview). White suggests that we should take a macro look at the history of economics and economic  development and not just take an arbitrary date that will support the current thinking.

White went on to discuss the Trade Aid charter explaining the three areas of partnership, change and sustainability.

Key statements:

“Globalization is very poor at growing wealth” and “free trade has not delivered growth, stability and equality”.

“I don’t want nice words, I want an order” White quotes a Bangladeshi women after he gave  a presentation on trade in a town in  Bangladesh.

“The status quo is not good enough for 80 percent of the world”

“The future of the fair trade movement is in the domestic market”. This is in the producing countries overseas and in New Zealand. With the decline of globalization, small and medium enterprises are ideally suited to service the domestic market that they are based in, e.g. local seasonal food produced for a local market.

To measure the impact of fair trade we need to make sure that success is measured in the eyes of the community that is being assessed  and not imposing a “western” standard that would be unobtainable. “An iron shed is luxury compared to a mud hut” yet to a first world economy observer it would be still an iron shed. Mediocrity to one person is excellence to another. It is not for us to judge the other, especially if we do not know all of the circumstances of the other.

“All this (change) is good, but besides, there is something really important that may be difficult to measure but is real: artisans and their families now can think in the future, they can do planning, they can even dream.” MINKA, Peru.


Are free trade agreements always good? Often the free trade agreements can include “hooks” that could affect, not just business but may impose a colonial style approach to education, health, and welfare. Each agreement needs to be looked at not just from an economic perspective but from a holistic societal and sovereign view. Is short-term gain ever worth long-term loss? Some doubt and suspicion is required to ensure that own interests are protected, this includes the sale of land to overseas interests.

A further question to be asked is: Sustainable for who? Are all parties to any trade being treated in a way that is beneficial for all?

Overall this was an excellent presentation and the fact that the audience was left with questions will help in applying due diligence to all trade practices.

Paul S Allen

%d bloggers like this: