Letters to the Editor: medicine, nuclear power and family dogs

Otago Medical School. Photo: ODT files
Otago Medical School. Photo: ODT files
Today's Letters to the Editor from readers cover topics including the restructuring of the Medical School, the fallout around nuclear power, and our three-headed prime minister.


Proposed Biomed axe is astonishing

I find it astonishing that the university is even thinking about more restructuring and even more that it is at the very important School of Medical Sciences.

This is the school that underpins the Medical School and training of our doctors, dentists, physiotherapists, laboratory workers and scientific researchers. If we are needing more doctors in the New Zealand system, why would the reduction of academic staff in the provision of basic medical sciences be even thought about?

These are foundation departments that are very important to the basic training of our future doctors. But that’s all right, just reduce the anatomists, biochemists, microbiologists, physiologists and toxicologists and let’s see how well a future doctor will fare.

Will they know about hormones, bones, nerves, toxins, pathology or microbes? No matter, let’s just wing it, she’ll be right.

It is a shame but that seems to be the way the university is heading, with staff looking over their shoulder waiting to be told, sorry mate we don’t need your expertise any longer.


Lesley Schofield


I do not believe it

I cannot believe there are still people in this country who want a nuclear power plant built. Just ask the emergency services how they handled Cyclone Gabrielle and then wonder how they and us the public will handle a nuclear accident?

If you want nuclear power to charge your smartphone, move to somewhere that has a nuclear power plant. I imagine the fallout, if there was a plant in Roxburgh, would leave most of the South Island a dead zone . There may be very little chance of an accident and I am sure that’s what people in the Ukraine thought as well, not to mention 3 Mile Island.

Jim McCormick


Priorities questioned

Would it not have been kinder for the government to make funding the cancer treatment drugs promised in their election campaign their number one priority? Their other policies may be desirable but nobody is going to lose their lives or have them shortened by having to wait a bit longer to see them implemented.

Peter Johnson


Doggone quiet

It's great to see a little patch of elite soil given the consideration the Taieri should have had back when property developers gained permission to fragment the area into lifestyle blocks.

Other reasons for making it hard or impossible for a needed veterinary practice to establish at Outram are a bit fanciful.

There is one house on the property. If a new occupant moves in, as many of us have found in urban areas, traffic and noise and petty crime can go from insignificant to diabolical. The same applies to family dogs.

One, left alone and lonely all day, may not even be recognised by its family as a problem — they're out, when they come home doggo is happy and quiet.

Businesses have a high incentive, and vets have management experience at keeping animals from being a nuisance.

K. Nordal Stene
North East Valley


Reclaimed land

I find it depressing that so much of the space that has been freed up for people as part of the George St upgrade has almost immediately been recolonised by cars.

Can the DCC please enforce the rules around footpath parking and/or make it clearer that it is pedestrian space.

Jeremy Moyle
North Dunedin


They knew a thing or two back in the old days

In a recent "100 Years Ago" mention was made that in the building of the cenotaph in Queens Gardens in 1924 the builders drilled down to some 90ft, and not finding anything solid for foundations, the cenotaph was built on a floating foundation. The precedent for this had already been set by the building now called Consultancy House that was built for the NZ Express Company in 1910. Consultancy House sits on a floating foundation, is made of ferro cement, was New Zealand's first skyscraper, and the first in New Zealand to use precast concrete panels.

Have the powers that be considered building the new Dunedin hospital on a floating foundation? The footprint of the hospital building is larger and less storeys in height, than Consultancy House. Probably a cost saving compared to the many piles being inserted at the moment.

Pete Smith


Future sacrificed

We are currently governed by a three-headed prime minister which very few people would have knowingly voted for. Add in a self-proclaimed environmentally irresponsible strongman and it is time to ponder on what form of government we would have liked to vote for. MMP has given Shane Jones, with a handful of votes, the power to destroy our environment. David Seymour seems hell-bent on destroying our education system.

We need to rebuild a system of social justice. Our elected representatives need to control trade, development and tourism to a level that will protect the environment for future generations. Our independence must not be sacrificed for a quick profit.

Islay Little


Address Letters to the Editor to: Otago Daily Times, PO Box 517, 52-56 Lower Stuart St, Dunedin. Email: editor@odt.co.nz