August 15, 2007

Newmarket demands a subsidy from Waiheke

The Broadway Newmarket shopping area is a dreary open air mall, a bit like Kowloon's Nathan Road without the underground railway but with the exhaust fumes (a motorway and thoroughfare both run through it), and it prides itself on being the nation's premier shopping destination. Not that I would ever take any overseas visitors there.
Of course, the area has its own spinmeister in the form of Cameron Brewer, ceaselessly marketing his strip mall to the city and the country. He has been talking to his counterparts in Takapuna, and the North Shore Times reported he said:
"Broadway is about to be upgraded and this was achieved because we adopted the Waiheke Principle - that is if you make enough noise you're more likely to get what you want."
I had never heard of this "Waiheke Principle" or it being defined as behaving like undeserving upstarts. I would have associated it with being laid-back and generous to your fellow citizens in other parts of the city, what with Waiheke subsidizing their lifestyles as the Council pulls off much more in rates cash than it spends on the island.
So it surprised me that champions of the free market like Mr Brewer would exhort his fellow merchants to bray for council subsidies and "blame" the practice on an island that actually provides the dosh instead of creaming the system. That's a doubly perverted use of language and a slur on his supporters and customers. I think I will be shopping on the island instead and help subsidize his lifestyle. He should be more grateful to the hand that feeds him.

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