A tribute to Bernard Schwartz—that’s Tony Curtis to most of us

I can’t let the passing of Bernard Schwartz—a.k.a. Tony Curtis—go without some sort of tribute.    I’ve bitten my tongue a few times this year on writing what I wanted to on this website. And with hindsight, I really should have just gone for it, as someone who preaches transparency. Yes, I do indeed have […]

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Explaining to Lucire readers about my political ads

[Cross-posted at Lucire] New Zealand readers will be seeing a few advertisements around this site relating to the local body election in Wellington. And perhaps, thanks to programming not always being precise, a few more readers outside New Zealand will notice them, too, although we have targeted them for this country alone. I think it’s […]

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It’s ‘Chevy’—even President Obama says so

Dear Chevrolet: even your own nation’s president calls the brand ‘Chevy’: You might want to rethink that memo. You may also like A whinge about whinging Volkswagen’s scandal won’t spread to other German car groups How can we help those fooled into believing what their local brands are? Johnny Foreigner might be better at running […]

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Replacing a social network near you: real life

As news emerges that teenagers have spent less time on Facebook, and there are more profiles getting closed on the social network, Sony has released its newest trailer for The Social Network. After 9-11, it’s time to tell the “other” story of the ’noughties. And if Facebook is the topic of a Hollywood film, then […]

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Getting Wellington out of debt—by growing the right businesses

In plain English, when a city is hundreds of millions of dollars in debt—depending on who you believe, the figure is between $200 million and $400 million—how do you get out of the hole?    1. You can sell the family jewels, and there’s water left. We tried this in the 1980s, and now so […]

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What we need from leaders in the new decade: creativity leads the list

My friend and colleague at the Medinge Group, Ava Hakim, passed on a few papers from her day job at IBM. The first is the latest edition of a biennial global CEO survey, while the second asks the next generation of leaders—Generation Y. The aim: to find out what these groups think about the challenges […]

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Autocade grows to 1,100 models: slowly but surely

Some weeks ago, as we neared this milestone, I planned to write a small blog post on reaching 1,100 cars at the Autocade site. And to show that these milestones are not rigged, we wound up with a fairly ghastly motor at that 1,100 mark. Nissan Cherry (E10/KPE10). 1970–4 (prod. unknown). 2- and 4-door sedan, […]

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Norman Macrae, RIP

I learned the sad news that Norman Macrae, CBE, 旭日章, passed away on June 11, just shy of his 87th birthday.    Norman was one of the great visionaries and forecasters of the 20th century, and served as deputy chief editor of The Economist till his retirement in 1988.    Among his forecasts was the […]

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Let the Outrageous Fortune come

Almost any New Zealander will recognize this image: a cast photograph from the long-running TV series Outrageous Fortune.    When I first heard of this show from Antonia Prebble, before she started filming, I have to admit I didn’t think the premise would see it last five years (and counting). But for New Zealand television […]

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Chevrolet doesn’t understand branding

After the chaps at Autocar began following me on Twitter yesterday—after all, I had been reading the magazine since it was part of the Ministry of Magazines, in the post-Iliffe days—I noticed a Tweet about Chevrolet asking its dealers to not refer to the brand as Chevy.    What?    According to Autocar: A leaked […]

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