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Tuesday, 21 August 2007


The Council publishes a booklet before the election that gives a thumbnail biography of each candidate. This (unless there is some glitch in the system) is what will be appearing for me:

Nobilangelo Ceramalus (pronounced noble-arn-jillo kerra-marliss) is fifty-nine, NZ-born, a company director. His university education included physics, chemistry, zoology, philosophy, ethics and logic. Mechanical, systems and industrial engineering were added later. He is a thinker, and very practical. He belongs to the New York Academy of Sciences. His focus is on brain-function (especially decision-making) and planet-friendly energy. His analytical skill showed early as the ability to make order from chaos, and he was often employed as a troubleshooter--he has a straightforward approach to problem-solving. He is imaginative, innovative, with an expressive sense of humour. Management experience includes information technology, transportation and energy; he worked in television production; he won national awards for writing on technical industries; he has wide-ranging design skills. He will ask of every proposal, 'Is it necessary and/or good for Waiheke?' 'If yes, how can it be done well for the mininum expenditure of time and money?'

To which I would add that I am very definitely not politically-correct. Decisions, especially public ones, should be made on the facts, and sense--good old common sense--not on some passing ideology or fashionable propaganda.

My interest in the decision-making mechanism of the brain is particularly focused on why people make bad decisions--especially bureaucrats. Only when the 'why' is understood can bureaucracy be dealt with.

The Council's booklet allows a maximum of 150 words, which is very little. It would be nice not to be crunched into such a tiny space, so if I had my druthers I would put something like this:

I am standing for the Community Board because a group of islanders who know me want me to. I said yes because Waiheke is the best place I have ever lived, anywhere in New Zealand, or even stayed. I love this island and I don't want to see it trashed. I want it to remain its good old pleasant self.

The Board's first duty is to defend the island to the hilt against speculators who see it as a money-machine instead of a place to live, developers who carelessly wreck its pleasantness, and the ruinous skulduggery of Auckland City. But the Board has not been failing its duty, and the nasty consequences are multiplying on our hillsides and hilltops. Power-mad planning bureaucrats cannot be trusted to do what we pay them for, so it should be a permanent fixture on the Board's agenda to weed out all the bad stuff.

There is also far too much rates money being wasted because of poor research, poor analysis and poor reasoning. In short, shoddy thinking. I am a thinker, with a very practical turn of mind; my university and other training was in science and engineering; and because I early proved able to make order out of chaos I have often been employed as a trouble-shooter. I am a very quick study, which is underlined by the fact that with one exception I have never in any job had any previous experience, but rapidly moved to achieve results there that no one else had ever achieved.

I have worked in two local bodies: the Auckland City Council (briefly, where I fixed a chronic mess) and the Waitemata Electric Power Board (where I was manager of the computer system, and turned it from an imminent disaster into a smoothly-running operation).

I have no political affiliations; I support no party; I am not PC, left-wing, right-wing, tail feathers or beak--just that good old-fashioned Kiwi word, practical. And I have a strong sense of humour.

If Waiheke elects me I will defend the island to the hilt, I will give the job 200%, I will not stand for any nonsense and I will strive not to waste a single dollar of your money.

I hate seeing our island trashed, but what has me vexed and dicontented at the moment is that Matiatia monstrosity, that carbuncle of bureaucratic corruption, that suppurating architectural cancer, that nose-thumbing example of hubristic contempt for Waihekeans now vandalising the ridge south of the wharf. What put it there is enough to anger a saint. The whole illegal shemozzle is detailed in a later posting.

Some quotations from ferry users on it: 'It's the ugliest thing I've ever seen,' from a woman, and 'You mean the container on the hill,' from a man.

Some apologies for the photograph, because I am not a suit person. I rarely wear one, but that was the only recent photograph taken before I needed a medical dressing on my face, so I was stuck with it (the photo, and the face). Please, don't prosecute me for misleading advertising... ;-)

And while I am on the subject of advertising, I won't be defacing Waiheke with a billboard or billboards.

Click here for an article about me that appeared in Gulf News.


(For my over-the-top, very unserious side, try thelowerdeck.blogspot.com). To start at Episode 1, click here).