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Open mike 07/01/2014

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, January 7th, 2014 - 152 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmike

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step right up to the mike …

152 comments on “Open mike 07/01/2014”

  1. amirite 1

    Paul Buchanan said on radio yesterday that Snowden is about to release files about NZ as one of the Five Eyes spying partners. The files may show that NZ was spying on China which could worsen our economic relations with that country.

    The MSM’s re-modelling of Colin Craig as Nats’ potential coalition partner continues. But it looks like that no matter what the media is trying to do, the general public’s perception of Colin Craig as a nutter will not be changed. The December polls seem to suggest so.

    Also, it seems that Rodney Hide will have a go at Act’s leadership. This Sunday on Radio Live, he was adamant that Act will win again in Epsom but would not disclose who will lead Act in 2014 on the way to election.

    Interesting times ahead.
    Vote the bastards out!

    • geoff 1.1

      Also, it seems that Rodney Hide will have a go at Act’s leadership.

      Didn’t the dark lord Douglas recently say that Rodney Hide shouldn’t be ACT leader again?

      Edit:
      Ah yes, here it is..
      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11174085

      Not that it matters, neither the ACT party, Roger Douglas or Rodney Hide are worth two knobs of goat shit.

      • aerobubble 1.1.1

        Be careful. Craig Colins may be unelectable but could get in on the list.

        Bennett is going up against her thinner blonder? self in North Harbor.

        The thinking I suppose is National voters may see no difference and know Bennett will get in on the National list.

        Then whats her name will then get over the line, and drag Craig with her.

        That’s what the freak show needs to be exposed, National extremist gambit in the North Auckland seat, putting in a religious right into parliament.

        You see instead of whatshername winning on her record, she gets cover from the Craig and legitimacy from pounding the pavement against Bennett in a sideshow of vacuous sound bites.

        Its why Key wouldn’t do away with the single member party loophole.

  2. Tracey 2

    Amrite

    interesting indeed. Nicky hager is the first I recall reading of 5 eyes. I tip my hat to him. Corngate. Hollowmen. Five eyes and his fabulous bruce jesson speech.

    imo he is a homwgrown hero for his digging and head above the parapet.

    • Anne 2.1

      And don’t forget “Other People’s Wars” Tracey. It’s a tome, but well worth ploughing through…

      That book came about because a group of concerned military officers – some very senior – were appalled by the lies and misinformation that was being reported about New Zealand’s involvement in Afghanistan in particular, and were willing to talk to him. He told a group of us “we would be amazed at just who was willing to come forward and talk to him”.

      A repeat performance of “The Hollow Men” in many ways.

      • Bearded Git 2.1.1

        Arise Sir Nicky then. (Though I would hope he would tell them where to stuff their knighthood.)

      • Murray Olsen 2.1.2

        “Other People’s Wars” is well worth reading and rams home the senselessness of our having anything except a coastguard and some sort of peace keeping and disaster response ability. The RNZAF might as well wear USAF uniforms and as soon as our admirals get blue water ships, they sail off and mix themselves up in adventures on behalf of the yanks. If they won’t take orders from civilian authority, I don’t see why civilians should pay their salaries. I would say the spooks are even less interested in working for us.

        • greywarbler 2.1.2.1

          Murray O
          +1

        • Anne 2.1.2.2

          Agree Murray Olsen.

          I spent five years working in a civilian capacity on an Air Force base. During that time I had direct contact with flight crews on a daily basis. I don’t mind telling you I was impressed with their professionalism and the work they did. There were the Orions flying out on daily missions (almost) policing our 200 mile fishing zone. Hercules aircraft were constantly shifting equipment and personnel from one place to another. A couple of Boeing aircraft did the shifting of large numbers of Defence personnel around the country and overseas. There were search and rescue missions of one kind or another almost on a weekly basis and weather related emergencies. The Air Force did an exceptional job during the Cyclone Bola emergency – travelling backwards and forwards 24/7 for several weeks without let-up. They deserved a collective medal for that alone. And finally the overseas peace-keeping and “re-construction” missions. More than enough to keep a small but very professional group of people in full time employment.

          We can fulfil out international obligations without fighting and scrapping in “other people’s wars”.

          • thechangeling 2.1.2.2.1

            Always wondered what the inflight entertainment and catering was like on airforce Boeing flights? Do they have flight stewards just like on civilian aircraft with free food and grog?

  3. Tracey 3

    Amrite

    maybe hooten is standing. Apart from calling garth george a socialist he has been quite moderate for him lately.

  4. Tracey 4

    Lanth

    had been thinking about that but never underestimate the ego to take one in a contradictory direction.

  5. jcuknz 5

    Viewing that clip of the ‘Judge asking questions” suspected of getting him fired from Fox News
    http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=52b_1329796059
    I was struck by and enjoyed his clear diction, something which with notable exceptions is largely missing in New Zealand reports and interviewees as with most of what emerges from around the world.
    Which is a primary reason that the written word has such an attraction for me when one works through the typos and mis-spelling so common these days as people simply either do not know or do not check what they have written.

  6. what david cunnliffe needs to do..in his state of the nation speech..

    http://whoar.co.nz/2014/the-us-declared-war-on-poverty-50-years-ago-you-would-never-know-it-comment-what-cunnliffe-must-do-and-how-about-that-glaucoma-madnessblindness-eh/

    and how about that glaucoma-madness..?..eh..?

    (excerpt..)

    “….and as an aside:..here is another example of the madness that labour/the next progressive govt must tend to..

    ..did you know that if you get glaucoma..that you can get a relatively simple operation to fix that..or you can slowly go blind..

    ..now..these (uncaring/randite-madness-driven)tory arsewipes who currently rule over us..

    ..have ordered that if you get glaucoma when you are over the age of sixty..

    ..and you don’t have the few grand it costs to get the operation private..

    ..that you can just get fucked..

    ..you can just go slowly blind..

    ..now..do i have to point out to readers the utterly mindfucking madness of a policy like this..?

    ..and how these shortsighted-fools (pun intentional) obviously have not factored into their brilliant cost-saving policy..

    ..the costs to the country of caring for those soon to be blind elderly..

    ..utter..fucken..madness..

    ..and as for the human costs to those slowly going blind elderly new zealanders..?

    ..they just don’t fucken care…

    ..and there you are mr cunnliffe..

    ..there is a populism-drenched idea/promise for you to both easily make..

    ..and to use as an example-club of how these tories are both totally uncaring for the poor citizens of this country..

    ..and fucken economically-illiterate..

    ..their greed-driven neo-lib/randite ‘beliefs’..

    ..seeming to shield them from viewing the human outcomes of what they preach..”

    (cont.)

    phillip ure..

    • Corokia 6.1

      They don’t give a shit. Check out Homepaddock ‘Saving species nearly killed it’, Ele Ludemann making analogies about DOC wasting money saving genetic lines that she says should have been left to die out and likening that to welfare spending. G Edgeler called her out on it and she back tracked, but not before showing her true colours.

      • phillip ure 6.1.1

        and of course ludemann is a part of that huge number of rightwing voices on national radio afternoon..

        ..and she usually trots out absolutely ancient internet-drivel..

        ..(leavened with neo-lib-seasoning..)

        ..ludemann is as funny as a piece of wood..and as insightful as a rock,..

        ..i dunno what she is meant to be doing in that slot..

        ..(some kind on online/new-journalism/blog-expert..?..oh dear..!..)

        phillip ure..

        • Corokia 6.1.1.1

          Her right wing blog is promoted by her being on Afternoons. The blog is nothing but pure right wing spin. As seen by the post I mentioned, her views are extreme.

          • Red Rosa 6.1.1.1.1

            Well spotted. That blog has everything…the preachy-teachy far right lines, direct from Nat HQ. The ‘let them eat cake’ condescension, almost a self -parody. Relentless farming coverups for the usual suspects..pollution and destruction. Sort of ‘twinset-and-pearls on steroids’.

            Should be subtitled ‘The Red Neck with a Blue Rinse’…;)

  7. jcuknz 7

    There is talk of pardoning Snowden but I think he should be given the Medal of Honour for bravery in taking on the largest and most powerful country/ group of countries in the world, or perhaps a Nobel Prize with its monetry tags would be more useful

    • McFlock 7.1

      I tend to agree – he id’d an issue, recognised the action he could take at great personal risk, and executed that action intelligently and with care for the safety of himself and others.

      • aerobubble 7.1.1

        I think the argument that he exposed national security, which he has, is wrong since who was handing out state secrets to contractors, not Snowden. How was Snowden to know they would harm National Security, he’s not suppose to have National Security secrets, he’s not a government employee.

        Its hugely chilling to democracy to find out that private firms could be working state databases for profitable opportunities. Were the contracts auctioned? Did partially foreign owned entities win contracts? Will companies from five eye nations get to bid in the next round.

        When the government spends billions collecting data on everyone on the planet and only private entities with connections in washington can harvest that information, protected by state national security laws, then we all better start worrying.

        • McFlock 7.1.1.1

          Well, yes he did compromise the state security apparatus by revealing the extent of their surveillance (and thus the fact they has misled their political overseers, for example). It’s now working its way through the legal system – and I wonder if even Scalia can argue it’s constitutional…

          What he didn’t do (AFAIK) was compromise the safety of individuals, agents, or informants (other than himself).

          Giving secrets to contractors can be a required part of the job – they just get bound by security agreements etc. Whether such work should be privatised is another argument altogether.

  8. Tracey 8

    If you wondered who is able to afford lakeside holiday homes, wonder no more…
    A bit of nimbyism from our tourism chief?

    http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11182176

    • weka 8.1

      I don’t know Tracey. On the face of it, it does look like there are reasonable issues to object on. I’m sure there is more to the story than we can see in that article, but it does seem an odd design if you want cyclists and walkers to use the same track. Plus the concrete is ugly as, at least in that photo.

      • Bearded Git 8.1.1

        Rubbish Weka it’s rank nimbyism. If people like Sneddon get their way there will be no new public tracks through NZ, with their obvious massive economic and health benefits. Agree on the concrete though.

        • weka 8.1.1.1

          You must have read a different article to me then. Looks like they were objecting to the way the path was being constructed, not that it was there (looks to me like the access has been there for quite some time, that berm isn’t new). Plus my points about design stand. Where are you getting your information from?

          The current focus on putting tracks in everywhere is a mire of conflicting needs. Simplifying that down to a catch-cry of NIMBYism is not helpful.

          “An even worse situation is where the lessee of a Crown Pastoral Lease has, for no good reason apart from rank selfishness and nimbyism, absolutely refused access across Crown Land beside Lake Roxburgh causing the cycle/walking trail between Alexandra and Roxburgh to be discontinuous, necessitating an expensive and inconvenient boat trip for several kilometres, a situation that puts off many cyclists/walkers.”

          Selfishness and nimbyism, how do you know? What has the farmer said?

          • Bearded Git 8.1.1.1.1

            It’s been well reported in the press down here Weka. Basically the farmers say it is our pastoral lease so stuff you. Admittedly there might be very slight, and I mean very slight, adverse effects from the track on farming, but these have to be weighed against the purposes of the Crown pastoral Lease Act which aims:

            “to promote the management of reviewable land in a way that is ecologically sustainable………… to enable the protection of the significant inherent values of the reviewable land…………and to make easier the securing of public access to and enjoyment of reviewable land” (Crown Pastoral Land Act 1998, S.24).

            • weka 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Are you sure there is not more to it than that? Often in those situations there is history that needs to be resolved. And I still don’t see how you can make the same judgement about the Taupo situation unless you have more facts than the rest of us.

              btw, last time I drove through the Millenium track from Miller’s Flat to Beaumont, I thought what a complete fuck up. Trees being removed, big fences put up, an increadibly beautiful piece of landscape made ugly (not that the farmers don’t contribute to that as well). I’m sure in time some of that will sort itself out, but bike tracks aren’t always the bees knees. Increasing numbers of access sometimes takes things away. Fuck tourism and this idea that development is always good.

              • Bill

                What if the idea of trespass was dumped but access by way of neat little suburban like paths wasn’t provided?

                Lack of trespass works well in other countries. And whereas tourists and ‘day trippers’ might be drawn by the idea of a nice stroll down a tarmac/concrete/rubber/gravel walkway, they might not be so drawn to walking/scrambling over ‘natural’ countryside.

                And yes. Agree. Fuck the tourism.

                • Ennui

                  As a trout fisher I am very aware of the erosion of access to prime spots in particular. There is not only encroachment by way of development (as around lake shores) but also the denial of access over surrounding land to public waters. The latter is often a result of a “deal” between landowners and tourist guides to effectively privatise Crown riverbeds to all except those willing to pay for access across private land.

                  What we are seeing is the constant erosion of the public domain where ever somebody sees a way of deriving an income from it, or of giving themselves a privileged position.

                • Bearded Git

                  Weka and Bill-I read a few weeks ago that a big percentage of the people using the Otago Rail Trail come from Auckland and environs.

                  Weka-tracks always take a while to “bed-in’ Have a look at the Miller’s Flat-Beaumont track in 3 years time. (I agree when tracks are first built there are adverse effects). My understanding is that parts of this track have had to be put in beside the road because adjacent landowners refused access along the old rail line which they were given for a song.

                  Bill-go and say “fuck the tourism” to the people of Omakau and Lauder and Middlemarch and see the response you will get. The Maniototo’s economy has been boosted by the huge success of the rail trail.

                  Ennui-agree entirely.

                  • Tim

                    so I wonder what they’d say if a gubbamint came along and said ….. hey chaps, we’re going to re-establish the railway?

      • Pasupial 8.1.2

        Concrete is indeed ugly (and its manufacture also produces much CO2), but Sneddon et al only seem concerned with their particular patch; which would substantiate Tracey’s claim of NIMBYism on his part, given:

        “The track, popular with walkers and cyclists, begins 10km away in central Taupo.”

        When I read the article in the ODT earlier this morn, I was mainly struck by this:

        “While the donation and the plan for the concrete track were notified in council agendas, letters to houses in the area, council press releases and media coverage, objectors with holiday homes say they had no knowledge of it until construction started in December.”

        Surely it was the responsibility of the house owners to ensure that the council had an alternative address, or to have their mail redirected, while they were non-resident if they wanted to be consulted. They must pay rates on the properties after all, which means paperwork going somewhere.

        Also Sneddon’s criticism of the track seems rather incoherent:

        ‘ The objection wasn’t against the path, which “goes nowhere”. “All it does is finish a little further on.” He said it was not properly suitable for cycling. “You can’t ride two bicycles side by side on this path.” ‘

        Which, if anything, seems like an argument to have the track widened to better serve both pedestrians and cyclists.

        • weka 8.1.2.1

          “They must pay rates on the properties after all, which means paperwork going somewhere.”

          Yes, generally councils send important letters to the ratepayer’s prefered address, not a letterbox drop. It’s not unusual for councils to do things without notifying people properly.

          “Also Sneddon’s criticism of the track seems rather incoherent:

          ‘ The objection wasn’t against the path, which “goes nowhere”. “All it does is finish a little further on.” He said it was not properly suitable for cycling. “You can’t ride two bicycles side by side on this path.” ‘

          Which, if anything, seems like an argument to have the track widened to better serve both pedestrians and cyclists.”

          Yes, and I’m sure that they would prefer to not have more people crossing in front of their yard than before, and so they are trying to find ways to mitigate the problem. But that doesn’t make them wrong. Sedden is most likely a complete hypocrit given his day job (although he may not be responsible for his wife’s actions either), but I really don’t understand why people who object to impacts are automatically labelled nimbys and selfish. Not all development is good, and not all development that benefits in some ways is without negatives in other ways.

          • Pasupial 8.1.2.1.1

            Weka

            “It’s not unusual for councils to do things without notifying people properly.”

            They did seem to have made the effort here though via “notifi[cation] in council agendas, letters to houses in the area, council press releases and media coverage”. That the holiday home owners didn’t pick up on any of this seems to speak more of their disengagement from the community than the council’s negligance.

            “Not all development is good, and not all development that benefits in some ways is without negatives in other ways.”

            I can definitely agree with you on that point, though remain in favour of expanding cycle-ways.

    • Bearded Git 8.2

      Nice post Tracey.

      An even worse situation is where the lessee of a Crown Pastoral Lease has, for no good reason apart from rank selfishness and nimbyism, absolutely refused access across Crown Land beside Lake Roxburgh causing the cycle/walking trail between Alexandra and Roxburgh to be discontinuous, necessitating an expensive and inconvenient boat trip for several kilometres, a situation that puts off many cyclists/walkers.

      My understanding is that the tenure review in question is up for review in 2017 (?) at which time the goverment of the day can create a marginal strip outside the pastoral lease land where the cycle/walkway can go as of right. Better hope that Labour/Greens are in by then because National will never go against its farming mates.

      It is possible that when Labour/Greens get in later this year they could legislate to push the cyleway through the pastoral lease land as a matter of public interest.

  9. Morrissey 9

    TV3 dignifies a science-denier by calling him a “skeptic”
    TV3 News, Monday 6 January 2014, 6:10 p.m.

    As even the supremely insensate John “Cabbage” Banks must have noticed, it’s been hot in New Zealand lately.

    At the same time, however, it’s been extremely cold in the United States and Europe, and a couple of boats have been caught in the ice in Antarctica. This naturally calls into question the whole idea of global warming, as the intelligent folk at one of our premier blogs have noted….
    http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/2014/01/ice-veteran-slams-ship-fools/

    With all this heat in the air, the producers at TV3 News evidently thought it was time to assign ace reporter Emma Brannam to come up with a short, sweet item about the heat wave. A “balanced” item, of course, which means that you balance up the bias of scientists by countering it with the well reasoned denials of cantankerous fanatics who insist the world’s scientists are engaged in a massive scam along the lines of the Illuminati conspiracy, the Harold Holt defection to the USSR or the 9/11 “inside job”.

    The item began with shots of Aucklanders swimming, rubbing sunscreen on their bodies, and eating ice cream. All this served to establish the theme: it’s hot. Emma Brannam then gave about twenty seconds of air time to the leading climate scientist Professor Jim Salinger.

    This was “balanced” by going to a crank, Bryan Leyland, one of the New Zealand advocates for Screaming Lord Monckton, the infamous science-denier who caused a fuss recently when Victoria University refused to treat him as a serious person…..
    http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-17042013/#comment-620413

    In the interests of “balance” rather than accuracy, Emma Branham called Leyland a “skeptic”, as if he were some kind of Voltaire, rather than a science-denying fruitcake.

    Since “balance” is obviously the watchword for TV3 News, I guess we can expect to see a Holocaust-denier interviewed every time World War II is mentioned, an Elvis-worshipper brought on to assert Elvis is still alive whenever any mention is made of his death, and a member of the Flat Earth Society hauled out to refute the scientific establishment’s socialist propaganda every time an item on space travel is aired.

    • “..In the interests of “balance” rather than accuracy, Emma Branham called Leyland a “skeptic”, as if he were some kind of Voltaire, rather than a science-denying fruitcake..

      (heh..!..)

      phillip ure..

    • Ennui 9.2

      “Ace reporter”…..At this juncture I tend to blanch, I have since I left Uni (sometime in the Jurassic) met, socialised with, know (some are even children of my old friends) several TV “jornos”. They have two things in common: they talk nicely for the camera, they look good and presentable on the screen.

      This adds up to one thing: they are talking heads. Without being too mean to people I like I cant think of one who has life experience, actual knowledge, etc. That is because in the role it is not needed, it is light weight / follow the script stuff. To assign intelligence to them (and I am not saying they are unintelligent) is to miss the point. So “ace”, wtf does that convey? I gave up listening to mainstream news eons ago for this very reason.

      PS If you want to see some good reporters asking difficult questions try the Russian TV reporters (RT).

      • phillip ure 9.2.1

        some ‘good’ news sources most may not know of are..

        ..alternet..information clearing house..salon..utne reader..mother jones..the nation..boing-boing..

        ..and for newspapers..the guardian..and the independant..

        ..and of course (ahem..!..that local scurrillous-rag..that whoar.co.nz..)

        ..that lot’ll see ya right..eh..?

        phillip ure..

    • alwyn 9.3

      Please Morrissey, you must get the story right.
      Harold Holt did NOT defect to the USSR.
      He swam out to sea and was picked up by a Chinese submarine. In other words he defected to China.
      Everybody knows that. Please don’t confuse them by mentioning the USSR.
      As an aside there is a memorial to Holt in Melbourne. Sombody with a macabre sense of humour decided that a suitable memorial for someone who had drowned would be a public swimming pool!

      • Morrissey 9.3.1

        Indeed, alwyn, I learned of the Harold Holt Swim Centre (in Malvern) many years ago, while reading Barry Humphries’ fantastically funny book about Australian kitsch.

        The Australian establishment’s capacity for irony is almost as keen as the South African establishment’s legendary black humour.

      • phillip ure 9.3.2

        mandela astride a springbok..?

        ..too soon..?

        phillip ure..

  10. Tracey 10

    Yes… perhaps those who think human pollution is impacting climate for the worse should be called

    Nonsense skeptics

  11. Tracey 11

    Anne

    absolutely. I couldnt recall the name.

  12. greywarbler 12

    Listening to the radio this morning I think I got some insight.

    1 There was an item on the difficulties that Disney had opening a theme park in Paris and it nearly went broke. Something the management found was that with the sale of food, Europeans are different to the USA who tend tosnack a lot between meals. Europeans don’t they focus on the meal at meal times. And in buying stuff, Europeans tend to buy I think good stuff, infrequently unlike USA frequent purchases.

    Maybe the snacking is what has changed the USA shape dramatically wider and heavier of late decades.

    2 The hunting of whale oil. Sir Geoffrey Palmer was talking about eating whales and referred to a part of the scientific whaling clauses that say the whales should be used for something of value after the ‘science’. He referred to earlier days where whale oil was important but that died away when they discovered oil in Pennsylvania, I think.

    That is what the Japanese are anxious about. I don’t think they have any or not much oil (and also may be one reason for getting uptight about nearby islands being taken over by Chinese, apart from the security angle). There may be oil reserves in the waters there.

    Also any thinking country knows that oil supplies are getting tight. The Japanese would not like a scenario where they have to beg for oil from others, and be under their thumb, and have to pay big time for it. Also they know how a country can suffer when there is hostility and war, and they had the two atomic bombs and the fire storm in Tokyo. And their own filthy record to consider which they wouldn’t enjoy in reverse. The Chinese notice that they don’t hesitate to pay homage at the memorials of some of their dastardly military and scientific leaders. The Chinese haven’t forgotten the Manchurian atrocities at the beginning of the 20th century.

    So the Japanese would think, better to ensure some independence in oil for the future by keeping on with the whales and want to keep this ‘pipeline’ open which also would provide food for their large population.

    • Murray Olsen 12.1

      I think whale oil was mainly used for lighting, soap, and margarine. It was gas and electricity, plus the killing of too many whales, that cause its use to die out. I doubt if there is enough oil in all the whales in the sea to make a difference to the Japanese energy budget. I also don’t think they’re ever going to manage to feed themselves with whale meat. The whaling they do seems to be one of the last remaining ways that they can express their nationalism.

      • greywarbler 12.1.1

        Murray O
        Sir G Palmer mentioned the whale oil at the same time as he mentioned oil finds in the USA so thought that he connected them. Yes the nationalism thing could be strong – you can’t push us around stuff, but they must be looking at the global energy and political power too. Was I right that they don’t have their own oil reserves? I haven’t looked up.

        • Murray Olsen 12.1.1.1

          Some whale oil was used for domestic lighting, but it stunk. Kerosene was used as one of the replacements. In the US, this was originally distilled from coal, but the process of distilling it from crude oil was more effective, and I think that started in Pennsylvania around 1850.

          As far as I know, Japan has no oil reserves on their own territory. This was one of the causes behind WW2, where they wanted access to South East Asian oil. It’s also a factor in the number of nuclear power plants in Japan.

  13. Bearded Git 13

    Surely Key will call and election before Banks is sentenced? See:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/9580345/Banks-faces-daunting-new-year

    • weka 13.1

      Early election either way.

      Anyone know what Banks’ parents were jailed for?

      • McFlock 13.1.1

        locking him under the stairs for 18 years? That would explain a lot (as would consorting intimately with demons).

      • NZ Femme 13.1.2

        From memory, they were bootleggers and provided illegal abortions.

        • karol 13.1.2.1

          Archibald Banks, John’s father & his mother:

          I know John Banks — we were hosts at Radio Pacific at the same time and I got to know him well.

          He’s a good man. His background is well enough known — his bank-robber father was a crook and his mother an abortionist, both had serious drinking problems. He grew up in Auckland’s underworld of the fifties and sixties.

          As if a bank-robber wasn’t always a “crook”?

          • McFlock 13.1.2.1.1

            As if a bank-robber wasn’t always a “crook”?

            Have to differentiate the shotgun-holders from the managers somehow :)

          • Colonial Viper 13.1.2.1.2

            Well, there are those thieves with, and those without, honour…

          • phillip ure 13.1.2.1.3

            sheesh karol..!..ever heard of rehabilitation..?

            ..getting yr act a bit more together..?

            ..(i speak as an ex-junkie/ex-con..eh..?..’always’ one..eh..?..)

            ..and as banks’ parents were abortionists..

            ..shouldn’t they be heroes to many here..?

            ..hasn’t that penny dropped yet..?

            ..(just saying..!..)

            phillip ure..

            • NZ Femme 13.1.2.1.3.1

              See, that’s not how I took Karol’s comment. I thought she was pointing out the redundancy of the word “crook” in the original sentence she quoted:

              “…his bank-robber father was a crook…”

              I mean, it’s not really needed. It could have just said:

              “…his father was a bank-robber…”

              YMMV of course!

              • @ nz femme..

                ..i re-read it..and nah..!..

                ..karol is saying once a crook..always a crook..

                ..if i am incorrect in that reading..

                ..i will withdraw and apoligise..

                ..but from here it just looks like a cheap-shot..

                ..and spilling the sins of the father onto the son..

                ..and that ain’t right..

                ..in fact it gives every appearance of being the kind of nz small-town curtain-twitching janet frame skewered/detailed so well..

                ..eh..?

                phillip ure..

                • karol

                  Oh, really, phillip. Of course it’s what NZ Femme said. The crook phrase was redundant – maybe just to stress Archie was a crook?

                  I thought it was a small point – an aside, but also so obvious it didn’t need explaining.

                  • @ karol..so..were you being pedantic/tautology-alerting..?..and not sneering..?

                    ..if not the latter i withdraw and apologise..

                    ..but that’s bye the bye..

                    ..perhaps weka cd explain why she kicked off this witch-hunt on banks..thru the ‘sins’ of his parents..

                    ..and i really would like an answer to the question..

                    ..as banks’ parents were abortionists..

                    ..shouldn’t they be hailed as heroes..by many here..?

                    ..and i include yrslf/weka in that question/category..

                    ..phillip ure..

                • NZ Femme

                  I can’t speak to Karol’s intent obviously, (I’m just not seeing what you are) but when I responded to Weka’s original question, it was off the cuff facts from memory, with no judgement attached. I don’t hold John Banks accountable for his folks, only himself.

                  :::Snap::: @ Karol :)

            • Murray Olsen 13.1.2.1.3.2

              I did not get the same impression of karol’s comment, phillip. I thought she was pointing out the redundancy of describing Archie as a bank robber and a crook. I could be sensitive on such issues if I felt like it. I don’t.

      • veutoviper 13.1.3

        Archie Banks was a notorious career criminal and Banks’ mother Kitty was an alcoholic (Mayor Banks does not drink) and they were both jailed while he was attending Avondale College (after failing to get in to Auckland Grammar for being a “drongo”. Banks is a strange mix of boasting and self-deprecation.)
        His parents’ crime was procuring abortions; this is all spelled out in an authorised biography written some years ago by Paul Goldsmith who is now on the council.

        From this article
        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/index.cfm?objectid=10662438

        • Ennui 13.1.3.1

          Deuteronomy 24:16 – The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.

          So long as Banks gets “put to death” electorally for his multitude of sins.

          • Colonial Viper 13.1.3.1.1

            the drone strike case of US citizen Anwar al-Awlaki and then his US born 16 year old son 2 weeks later seems to contravene this.

            • Ennui 13.1.3.1.1.1

              Wish I could smile CV (or do one of hose smiley objects). If it was not so tragic, but American “Christian” morality is rather odd as the Archdruid points out http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.co.nz/search?updated-min=2013-01-01T00:00:00-08:00&updated-max=2014-01-01T00:00:00-08:00&max-results=50

              Try this
              Here are the passages I found in which Jesus tells his followers that they have a duty to take care of children, the poor, and other vulnerable people:

              Matthew 18:6, 18:10, 19:21, 23:14, and 25:31-46; Mark 9:36-37, 10:21, and 12:40; and Luke 10:30-37, 11:41, 12:33, 14:12-14, 18:22, and 20:47.

              Here are the passages in which Jesus tells his followers to pay their taxes without complaining:

              Matthew 5:42, 17:24-27, and 22:19-21; Mark 12:14-17; and Luke 6:30 and 20:21-25.

              Here are the passages in which Jesus tells his followers that they aren’t supposed to obsess about other people’s sins, but should leave that to God, and attend to their own moral failings instead:

              Matthew 7:1-5 and 9:10-13; Mark 2:15-17; Luke 6:37, 6:41-42, 7:44-48, 15:2, 18:10-14, and 19:7; and John 8:2-11.

              And here are the passages in which Jesus tells his followers to blame the poor and vulnerable for their plight, direct benefits toward the already well-to-do at the expense of everyone else, refuse to pay their fair share of taxes, and obsessively denounce and punish the sins of people they don’t like while finding every opportunity to excuse their own sins and those of their friends:

              Deliberately left blank until somebody can find some…

              • chrs 4 that ennui..

                i’m gonna lift it wholesale for whoar..

                ..v.good..

                ..i have felt for some time that we will never get real progressive-change..

                ..until we get the churches onside/beside us..

                ..this is good religious agit-prop to use to help achieve that alliance..

                ..phillip ure..

              • Colonial Viper

                +1

              • greywarbler

                Ennui
                If you want to do a smile – press the key for colon – then it’s colonsmilecolon and same for these –
                :grin: :razz: :idea:
                :shock: :wink: :cool: :sad:
                Moving mouth :lol:

                • greywarbler

                  Ennui I just meant to list the icons but of course copied them with the colons so got the faces not the names – so match the face with the design –
                  grin razz idea shock wink cool sad
                  lol.

          • veutoviper 13.1.3.1.2

            Agreed, Ennui – that is to you last sentence.

            Good quote from Deuteronomy, also. Like you, I changed my ‘pseudonym’ – previously Deuto, short for …. Not so much to do with the bible, rather more to do with cats and ‘Cats’. Know cattiness when I see, hear, read it. Used to be something of an expert myself, but have mellowed with age.

      • Murray Olsen 13.1.4

        Archie’s main claim to fame was as a fence. Apparently he was an honourable man, his word was his bond and all that stuff. John’s mother doesn’t have such fame in the folklore, which is possibly a reflection of the times.

    • Lanthanide 13.2

      It wouldn’t surprise me if John Key announces the election date this month, like he did at the start of 2011, to be seen to be ‘principled’ and above petty politics.

      Furthermore, this belief that the government would fall if Banks lost his seat is, once again, incorrect. The government has a confidence and supply agreement with the Maori Party so will be able to win any vote of no confidence. I daresay that breaking that agreement would hurt the MP more than it would hurt National. Banks leaving parliament means National would only have trouble passing right-wing legislation, which seems like it wouldn’t be a problem in this case as there would only be a few months left of the term – they can arrange for urgency before then to pass any legislation that would require Banks’ vote.

      Finally, calling an election because a minor party MP is removed from parliament really taints National a lot – they want to keep as much distance from Banks as possible, so it’s better to carry on with ‘business as usual’.

      • Bearded Git 13.2.1

        Lanth, I was talking more about the ordure that will fly around Banks’ sentencing and it’s association with Key (let’s have a cuppa) dragging down National’s poll ratings.

        Well aware the ‘orrible twosome have hitched themselves to National for this term, and so ending the Maori Party.

        • Lanthanide 13.2.1.1

          I can’t find Banks’ actual court dates, but it’s scheduled for 10 days in May.

          Are you saying that John Key will shortly announce an election before May? Or that after Banks is convicted but before he’s sentenced, Key will call an election then?

          Since the budget is delivered in May, and National definitely want to get in a 6th one, I think we can rule the first possibility out.

          I’ve already described why I think the 2nd won’t happen, not the least of which is that by that point it will be ~6 months until an election in November anyway so the Epsom seat can be declared vacant and not filled anyway.

          • veutoviper 13.2.1.1.1

            The trial has apparently been set to start on May 19 according to this MSM article

            http://news.msn.co.nz/nationalnews/8769177/act-leader-banks-returns-to-court

            As Lanthanide said, it is expected to take 10 days. So, unless Key and Co break with convention, the trial will coincide with the lead up to, and aftermath of the 2014 Budget – usually held in the second half of May. Convenient somewhat?

            My money is on an early election – possibly as early as early/mid July, or in August/September – announced after the Royal visit or on Budget Day with a short lead-in time only (can be as short as six weeks’ notice).

            Key will want to capitalise on the warm fuzzies, photo ops etc from the Royal Visit in early April – and also overshadow both the Dotcom compensation hearing in March, and possible extradition hearing currently scheduled for April, but expected to again be delayed until July, with possible ‘revelations’ unfavourable to/re Key.

            I don’t believe he will leave it until November, as he will be hoping to attend the G20 Summit in Brisbane on 15/16 November 2014. NZ is not a member of G20 but Australia is hosting the 2014 G20 meetings and have invited NZ to attend the meetings for the first time.

            http://johnkey.co.nz/archives/1770-New-Zealand-to-join-2014-G20-meetings.html

            • Lanthanide 13.2.1.1.1.1

              Good point, I hadn’t thought about the G20 summit. Still, October is still a feasible target.

              • veutoviper

                Yes, an October election is possible. In addition to the issue in my earlier comment, my gut feeling is that Key will not use the same strategy as in 2011 – ie announcing the election at the beginning of the year – but will go for the opposite this time around.

                IMO he will not want to give Cunliffe the time to establish a following/presence for too long, or give too much forewarning in the hopes that Labour will be behind in developing/announcing policies, getting their electorate candidates sorted etc. The number of Nats who have already announced their retirements etc suggests that National are well ahead in sorting their list.

                A mid-winter election could also result in an even lower voter turnout than in 2011 due to weather, which would probably also work to National’s advantage.

                • Lanthanide

                  But don’t forget that ‘early’ elections don’t reflect well on the incumbent.

                  Labour and Helen got a lot of flak for going early in 2002 (which prevented me from voting, as I turned 18 in October). The strategists reckon they did better by going early, but we can’t really know for sure.

                  • Bearded Git

                    mmm given the above discussion maybe you (Lanth and Veuto) are right and I’m wrong-election is likely in Sept-Oct. Banks is likely to be lead of to the cells in July, having been booted out of parliament earlier.

                    IMO this is close enough to the election for Key/National to suffer collateral damage in terms of loss in poll ratings. Labour and Greens cannot say “John Key’s mate John Banks is in chokey” often enough during the campaign.

                    • veutoviper

                      I am still of the opinion that it will be earlier – eg July – but there is a lot of water to go under the bridge in the next few months, so anything could happen based on the ever-changing situation in 2013.

            • Tim 13.2.1.1.1.2

              Moral of story: LABOUR, GREENS, be prepared to go AT ANY TIME! Surprise will be just one of Natzis tactics, alongside Mr Slip Slime Dirty Trix and his enterage of the 10% including a compliant media (playing their last round).

              • Anne

                Cunliffe has been well aware of the possibility of an early election from the time he was elected leader. I think that is why we didn’t hear too much from him in the last couple of months of the year. He was busy doing the behind the scenes campaign preparation – putting strategy into place etc. That’s my understanding anyway.

                • Te Reo Putake

                  Yep. Got my LEC campaign meeting tomorrow, Anne. Got a superb candidate, a small but perfectly formed team and a will to win. Bring it on!

                • McFlock

                  dec-jan always quiet politically, and difficult for opposition to get coverage. No point doing king-hits when they’ll be quickly enveloped and forgotten by the election.

                  The hubbub will start up in late feb – I’d expect about 50% of policy announced before campaign starts, with a couple more flagship lab/grn/mana complementary policy announcements (like NZpower and housing). Grn on 12-15% and lab on 36-40% by start of campaign is my hope.

                • Tim

                  “I think that is why we didn’t hear too much from him in the last couple of months of the year.”
                  Exactly my thoughts ….. although hopefully he’s not losing sight of the old guard a-wishin an-a-hopin he fucks up, and occasionally completely stuffing things up with media pronouncements and pontifications – after having looked at their gorgeous image in the mirror.
                  [Looks at Parker, Maid Marion, Billy Bunter from Wainui, and others sideways]
                  Foot shooting and clinging to romantic notions of how life could have been (if only) are trademarks of a certain clique that only have their egos to cling to (and by GOD they’ll hold out – probably even after I, and a few others piss on their graves.
                  (I’m sorry your honour, I was drunk at the time after visiting the local supermarket and taking advantage of a loss-leader item, and didn’t know what I was doing!
                  Awwwe – you poor poor thang – I sentence you to a King Hit – stand down!)

                  Btw … there’ll be quite a few gerries up on that charge before the sun goes down for the last time (I’ll be the one in the wheelchair)

            • lprent 13.2.1.1.1.3

              The trial has apparently been set to start on May 19..

              As Lanthanide said, it is expected to take 10 days. So, unless Key and Co break with convention, the trial will coincide with the lead up to, and aftermath of the 2014 Budget – usually held in the second half of May. Convenient somewhat?

              Have a look at what type of trial it is. Jury or judge.

              The difference are that a judge will often reserve their judgement decision, often for several weeks. Whereas a jury will (usually if not hung) deliver a decision at the end of the trial (and the judge will frequently reserve the their sentencing decision).

              If you look at the rules on MPs, only a *conviction* of the offense is required (ie based on potential prison term) to cause the effects on the coalition.

              Timing details are everything

      • Will@Welly 13.2.2

        I agree Key will go early, but I’d be very surprised if he announces the date prior to calling the election, like he did in 2011. Then National outsmarted the opposition, by refusing to debate anything whatsoever until after the Rugby World Cup. That left just 5 weeks. Democracy it wasn’t.
        My pick, and the one hesitation is what’s happening rugby wise, is that Key will call the election the day after Will and Kate leave New Zealand. Call me a cynic, not really, but the Woman’s mags will be lined up to print stories, Key will be featured right in the middle of it all, the right wing media will be fawning themselves over Wills and Kate, and all that publicity will too much to let slip. Key’s ratings should be sky high because of their visit.

        • McFlock 13.2.2.1

          the other point is that if banks goes the MP might decide to go at any time (I have the ompression that they’re still in the midst of a generational leadership transition). So if Key declares a Nov election in Jan, and loses confidence in June, he looks weak.

          But if he “spontaneously” calls a snap election after a royal visit, he looks like the same fuckwit that’s worked for him for years.

          • Lanthanide 13.2.2.1.1

            “So if Key declares a Nov election in Jan, and loses confidence in June, he looks weak.”

            Does he? Or do the Maori Party look petty for bringing an already-scheduled election forwards for purely political reasons, breaking their promises in the process.

            That has to be countered with the ‘mana’ the MP might gain from bringing down a right-wing government. I suspect there’s probably more mana in keeping your promises than breaking them, though, especially if the resultant election sees National win again – the MP would be unlikely to get another deal from Key.

            • McFlock 13.2.2.1.1.1

              The Maori party can choose any pretext for knocking out the govt. If the pretext holds up to the electorate, then it’s not a petty reason and key looks bad for being incapable of holdng a coalition together. If the pretext looks petty, then Key can’t even hold a coalition of children. The Prime Minister cannot look like a victim of a smaller party’s whims.

              That’s why I think Key would be stupid to announce a november election this far out.

              I suspect a lolly scramble budget following a royal visit and using the pretext of Banks’ trial (regardless of outcome) would be the most opportune time for the nats to announce/hold the election.

              • Lanthanide

                4th quarter election is running at 80c on iPredict, so if you’re right about your 3rd quarter prediction you could make a good return on it.

                Also I don’t think the MP will turn on him, not this close to an election, and take the risk of not getting back into government if National were to win.

                Unless there were some extreme circumstances, like Key retiring as leader & PM and the MP used that as an excuse, or National just had terrible polling (say around 39-40%) so it became clear that Labour would win the election, the MP could then claim they were doing the public’s will. But otherwise I just don’t see it happening.

                • McFlock

                  I’m not discounting a 4Q election, I’m just doubtful that key will be announcing the election well in advance like he did last time – the possibility of a steep nat plumment after the early year’s good-news events would be too great, and that would make their current and future partners shaky.

              • veutoviper

                The Maori Party may not even need to choose a pretext. They have not supported every piece of legislation put up by National – eg asset sales – where the Dunne/Banks votes have been vital.

                Another factor is the absentee rules in respect of voting. As I commented on a number of times in 2013, the MP only registered two votes, not three, on many occasions due to absences from Parliament due to these rules. IIRC, it would only take all three of the MP members to be absent without prior approval of the Speaker for their votes to drop to one or nil (I cannot recall the rules exactly, and don’t have time now to check) – thereby ‘inadvertently’ allowing a crucial (to National) vote to fail, if the Epsom seat was also vacant.

                Labour’s numbers in the House are now back up to full strength after being down for various periods in 2013 due to Parekura Horomia’s death and Dalziel’s departure; so National will need all their coalition numbers in 2014.

                These are also reasons why I believe that Key will call an early election, in addition to those in my two earlier comments above in this thread,

                • Lanthanide

                  “The Maori Party may not even need to choose a pretext. They have not supported every piece of legislation put up by National – eg asset sales – where the Dunne/Banks votes have been vital.”

                  But that’s the entire point of their supply and confidence agreement. They guarantee their vote on matters on supply and confidence only. So far they’ve kept their word and there’s no reason to break it.

                  • veutoviper

                    Agreed, Lanthanide, re supply and confidence agreement; and that they have kept their word on that. But also often with only two votes, not three due to the parliamentary absence rules. (The particular ‘quirk’ in the rules only seems to affect the MP at present).

                    But Turia and Sharples are often absent from the House, and it would not surprise me if this increases with their impending retirements and they forget to get the required approval to allow them to still register the one vote they can get when they are both absent. Time will tell.

                • Rosie

                  Thank you Lanthanide, veutoviper, bearded git, Will@Welly, Tim and McFlock. I really enjoyed that discussion about election timing possibilities. Something I had been wondering about given the influence of scheduled events around Dotcom and Banks.

                  Wish the Windsors’ weren’t popping in with the new bubba though. It’s an unwelcome candyfloss coated distraction in what could otherwise be a glee fest of come uppances for the high tard of Nu Zuland.

              • Anne

                +1 McFlock @ 3:41

                Bear in mind also Dotcom’s extradition hearing. The last I heard, the FBI were looking to have it delayed until October 2014 on the pretext they weren’t going to be ready sooner. Now that would fit in nicely with an election around August wouldn’t it. Anything negative that comes out about Key – and there clearly is something – isn’t going to matter.

                • veutoviper

                  Hi Anne. I am interested in your comments re the FBI seeking to have the extradition hearing delayed until Oct. Have you any links etc for this information? I obviously must have missed this, despite following the case closely.

                  Would not surprise me, but I also think the separate but related ongoing legal issues /hearings re the release of seized records back to Dotcom to allow him and the others to prepare their defence will also affect matters and timing of the extradition hearing.

                  Thanks also for you unnumbered comment re Cunliffe being well prepared for an early election. Did not doubt that he would be doing so, but as you are closer to the inner workings of Labour, that is reassuring. I also understand that electoral candidates will be finalised by the end of Feb, which is also good.

                  • Anne

                    I think it was brought up by someone (an American I think) during an interview on Radio NZ in December. Trying to trace it but no luck so far. The FBI are just requesting a further delay at this point… so it will be some time in Feb/March before it will actually be heard and a decision made. It’s getting suspicious in my view – these FBI initiated delays.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      There are a number of possibilities. One set revolves around the Federal case having suffered a major (or fatal) set back of some kind. Whether it is legal advice received which indicates charges against Dotcom would fail (perhaps for reasons of technicality), an inability to find or access incriminating data they had made assumptions about, or some other factor in a similar vein. I can hope against hope, but sadly seriously doubt, that lack of cooperation from NZ authorities plays a role somewhere.

                      Which leads to a related second set of possibilities. Letting Dotcom off scot free is no doubt politically unpalatable to some parties on both sides of the Pacific. So the delay may be related to special law which is to be passed specifically targeting Dotcom (such special law being a favourite of totalitarian regimes still interested in maintaining sack cloth like rags of legitimacy), waiting to see if his new services eg MEGA somehow incriminate him, or perhaps simply stalling the whole process in order to not make it obvious to one and all that the whole thing has been a contrived bloody cockup from the get-go.

                    • Anne

                      …or perhaps simply stalling the whole process in order to not make it obvious to one and all that the whole thing has been a contrived bloody cockup from the get-go.

                      That’s my pick.

  14. tricledrown 14

    Weather skeptics reasoning the weather goes up and down like that waving his finger up and down wow is that the comefy section of the news.

  15. Bill 15

    I won’t be commenting on this.

    I’m merely providing the link because I found it a thought provoking and insightful and think that some people might appreciate it being signposted.

    Link fixed.

    • weka 15.1

      Very good Bill, lots of layers in that. It’s a shame if you don’t comment as I think your perspectives would be helpful (given your relative semi-neutrality).

      • greywarbler 15.1.1

        I like this bit from the link Nuclear Unicorn – It’s a thoughtful piece and heartfelt.
        So much online social justice activism has become hyper-vigilant against sin, great or small, past or present.

    • just saying 15.2

      Hi Bill,
      I read the link. I think it’s a pity that you don’t want to comment because beyond all the anger (note – not rage) I also wanted to understand. Maybe that’s one kind of ‘walking and chewing gum’ that just can’t be done, and I think there are tight limits to what can be achieved in a forum like this anyway.

      I love this song – it has always felt like it was written for the family I grew up in.

      Like Soldiers Do – Billy Bragg

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IpIbPh44pH4

      Blue eyes fighting the gray eyes
      Fighting the tears
      Armed to the teeth for a war of words
      Reachin’ all the years

      I advanced across a poppy field
      I saw the gleam as you raised your shield
      And love screamed down
      With the sun behind its back

      Our fathers were all soldiers
      Shall we be soldiers too?
      Fighting and falling like soldiers do

      Nothing is clear in this tactical
      Unclear war
      I can’t be bothered to find out
      What we are fighting for

      No one can win this war of the senses
      I see no reason to drop my defenses
      So stand fast my emotions
      Rally ’round my shaking heart

      Our fathers were all soldiers
      Shall we be soldiers too?
      Fighting and falling like soldiers do

      Blue eyes fighting the gray eyes
      Fighting the tears
      Armed to the teeth for a war of words
      Reachin’ all the years

      I advanced across a poppy field
      I saw the gleam as you raised your shield
      And love screamed down
      With the sun behind its back

      I knew once again I was under attack
      So stand fast my emotions
      Rally ’round my shaking heart

      Our fathers were all soldiers
      Shall we be soldiers too?
      Fighting and falling like soldiers
      Fighting and falling like soldiers
      Fighting and falling like soldiers do

    • KJT 15.3

      Appreciate the link, Bill.

      Helps to put some things into perspective.

  16. Tracey 18

    ” GOP critics have said the Fed has inflated stock and real estate prices by pumping money into the markets, creating investment bubbles that could burst and wound the economy anew.”

    We didnt have qe, as advocated by the green party, but we have an inflated auckland property market.

    put money in. Pull money out. Both equal inflated house prices…

    weka

    I say nimbys for a couple of reasons…

    prof people with access to media
    sneddon a lawyer and one other named. Lawyers are very good at wanting to stop something for self interest and the ability to make it seem altruistic.

    my brother is in a similar socio econmoic bracket to these folks and he is very protective of his part time piece of paradise… despises the building going on in what used to be paddocks by his beach front and the noise of people it brings.

    lastly I wanted to provoke a discussion. Thanks to your queries and others responses I learned a smidge more but remain convinced the white upper class wants separation from the great unwashed

    • Murray Olsen 18.1

      Thinking of their attitude as nimbyism sits comfortably with my prejudices about the rich and their rural retreats. Once their particular mansion is finished and the road is sealed, they generally want all development to stop. I say why wait that long? If they don’t like what happens on public land, they shouldn’t have built there in the first place.

      There has been a similar problem over here, on the Gold Coast. Some people with houses near the beach are annoyed about a walking track that passes in front of their sections. The local right wing politicians want to privatise the land and sell it to them for a song, so they won’t have to see the great unwashed crossing their lines of sight.

  17. Saarbo 19

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11182520

    More brilliance from the NZ Herald. Reckons that Onion growers plan to place forward cover for sales at a “higher” cross rate rather than take the predicted lower spot rate in march…just weird. They are exporters not importers, locking in the higher rate with forward cover will cost them money.

  18. (this is your life..)

    “..You must not paint your house a wrong color – collect rain water – or hand out sandwiches to the homeless –

    – but a uniformed pervert is free to diddle your pudenda before you board that jet plane – ma’am.

    Just be glad you ain’t on that no-fly list.

    we must donate half of our shriveling paychecks to the health extortionist company.

    An army of goons are also overhearing our phone conversations – and reading our emails –

    – and the top thug of all can even have any of us snagged – medievally tortured – or shot –

    – without charge – and in secret –

    – and if we rebel – we’re only doing it in the prescribed manners –

    – by abusing or mutilating ourselves – lashing out at other hapless sinkers –

    – or best yet – waving cute signs for an hour or two.

    Meanwhile – those who have herded us all into this quicksand – are glorified and worshipped.

    Too often – our hatred of suffering is transformed into a contempt for sufferers –

    – and – as programmed – we marvel at the undeservingly or criminally powerful.

    Over and over again – we vote for our own doom –

    – and the more serious our predicament –

    – the more trivial the news that’s jammed down our throats…”

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article37314.htm

    phillip ure…

    • Tim 20.1

      +1
      We’re on the way here too phillip.
      Imagine if you will, two international students (conned by one of those tertiary institutions – since gone under – promising the world but delivering SFA through false advertising)
      Imagine their folks raise the tens of thousands necessary to get their kids to the land of milk and honey
      Then imagine after they complete their ‘degrees’ with flying colours, they find work (minimum wage of course and after paying various consultant and government dept fees).

      Imagine they get bashed up, their documentation and only means of communication stolen by a few who’ve been let in by the local alcohol pumping station, and who as a result have gone feral.

      Imagine getting dawn raided (of course we don’t do that anymore, OH NO) by ‘officials’ looking for ‘illegals’ – luckily photocopies of passports were held elsewhere.

      Then imagine the costs of replacing doccumentation AND the time taken to do so (travel, time of work to do so, fees – such as over $100 for a replacement sticker ffs!). Time taken off btw posing a threat to their continued employment.
      ….. all up …. well over 2 grand including GST, plus racist jibes from gubbamint officials in various agencies.

      What a nasty, petty, punitive, fascist little state we’ve become!

      Kind of Rough Justice if you ask me! I’ll be checking out the antidote tomorrow at the Pines, Wellington

      • Tim 20.1.1

        …. oh, and btw
        there are local bodies right here in little ole NuZuln who are for all practical purposes, enforcing (or at least attempting to) those same limitations on rain water collection.
        …. all the while not-so-much-concerned with collecting the alternative ( of shit-laden H2O – o…o…oh) ‘water’ from a stream – somewhat downstream from those lugzurrrryis images of the truly green green 100% (only slightly tainted with cow ahit – BUT …. apparently better than rain water).
        Fuk ‘em all Phill. Ignore it – best policy, but be prepared to shuv it up them if ever they have the balls to contest

      • Murray Olsen 20.1.2

        The biggest difference I can see from the original dawn raids is that the current ones are televised and turned into entertainment. NZ On Air pays to make crude propaganda for racist immigration policies so that NAct voting morons can sit on their fat arses thinking about how that bunch of Asians won’t be stealing their jobs. It’s not hard to see how fascism would be popular.

  19. (heh..!..(that’s all i’m saying..!)..heh..!..)

    http://boingboing.net/2014/01/06/passive-aggressive-notes-bes.html

    “..The annual best-of collections from Passive Aggressive Notes are always a great read –

    – and this year is no exception..”

    phillip ure..

  20. aerobubble 22

    India, Sir Lanka, Sub-Sahara, Arab nations all sign an agreement, to dna
    all state public servents. Charities, involved in sex and slavery crimes
    likewise collect familiar matches with the missing, enslaved and raped
    (and also fetuses).

    Cross matching is automated for anonymity, but when matches are found
    between say military officers and raped Tamils fetuses. Or sex slaves
    in a NY, London, Dubai brothel is matched with their African sub-saharan
    families enslaved daughter.

    Children in the future worried about their heritage could
    also match their own dna against these databases and find their parents
    aren’t theirs but paid to buy them, or worse, kept the offspring from
    their real enslaved mothers.

    Now imagine the immediate threat, when any public servant, any slave
    trader, any brothel owner, worried that they may in future be criminally
    charged. It would have immediate effect to chill rapes in India
    and Sri Lakia, to sex slavery in major global cities. Its would
    show those countries also who are supporting global slavery,
    the sex trade and rapists, that need servants of the state to ply their
    criminal trades.

    So is there a dna database without borders? Such a powerful tool.

    I dedicate this post to Caroline Cox, her emotional voyeurism, her
    spiritual conceit, and her unwillingness to take the wrongs to the wrong
    doers, in a NR podcast 15 dec.

    • Colonial Viper 22.1

      A powerful tool indeed. Consider also the cross database access that the intelligence services have. Their ability to match information that was never intended to be matched or alter/add/subtract records in various ways is, I believe, unparalleled, and the implications for civil life as yet, barely thought through.

    • Murray Olsen 22.2

      I suppose you’ll tell me that if I don’t keep sub-Saharan sex slaves, I have nothing to fear? No thanks.

    • McFlock 23.1

      your inverted perspective strikes again

    • Pete 23.2

      On the one hand I’m thinking “yay, jobs for the beleagured Dunedin economy”, on the other hand I’m thinking “this is not going to help climate change”. On a third mutated hand I’m slightly worried the fracking might trigger an earthquake and tsunami, obliterating my beloved home town.

      • McFlock 23.2.1

        I’m worried about the cruise ship season if the pipe breaks.

      • Morrissey 23.2.2

        “yay, jobs for the beleagured Dunedin economy”

        That’s a technical way of saying: “Yay, the shareholders of Shell, OMV and Mitsui are going to get a lot of money, and the New Zealand taxpayer will clear up the mess.”

      • weka 23.2.3

        On the one hand I’m thinking “yay, jobs for the beleagured Dunedin economy”, on the other hand I’m thinking “this is not going to help climate change”. On a third mutated hand I’m slightly worried the fracking might trigger an earthquake and tsunami, obliterating my beloved home town.

        Not to worry, think of the helicopter tourism when the next lot of icebergs float past. There’s always the disaster tourism if things go badly. Plenty of jobs there.

      • Pasupial 23.2.4

        Pete

        What jobs for Dunedites? The exploratory ship and workers will all be from overseas. There may be a bit of a boost for the town’s; hotels, bars, and brothels if any of them ever come ashore, but that’s about all I can think of.

        Also, this seems more of a conventional drilling operation (albeit in very deep water), rather than one involving fracking. I have to assume that you’ve been eating produce from Taranaki’s “landfarms” which would explain that “third mutated hand”.

  21. karol 25

    That cyclist killed at the Parnell Rise incident. It’s depressing. My condolences to all concerned.

    I have long felt there was always an accident waiting to happen at that intersection. However, I had thought it would be a pedestrian that would be hit. Motorists continue to turn at the lights after the lights turn red. Lorries/trucks, especially long ones, are the worst for pedestrians as the trucks take so long to clear the intersection, often after the pedestrian green light has turned red.

    Haven’t been there for a while, so maybe they have improved the intersection recently. And maybe that truck driver wasn’t rushing to take the turn rather than wait for the next green light.

    But, for a truck and cyclist to meet and impact – something wrong with the road provisions.

    • McFlock 25.1

      In dunedin, the scenario that seemed to really take a toll on cyclists was when drivers of parked cars opened doors into cycle lanes without looking, cyclist couldn’t stop in time and goes under truck. Last one I read about, the truck driver didn’t even know the cyclist had gone under his wheels – he’d purposely left good distance between the two and thought he’d passed without incident. Cops managed to tell him on the outskirts of town.

      Since then they’ve roughly doubled the width of the cycle lanes – hopefully that will really cut things down (although I’ve noticed more pricks driving with their wheels in the cycle lane – although it seems to be about the same numbers as cyclists who cruise through red lights).

      • karol 25.1.1

        Well, we can all make bad moves on occasions, but I think that cyclists and trucks shouldn’t be anywhere near in the same traffic stream.

        • McFlock 25.1.1.1

          yeah, dunedin’s fecking abysmal like that – no hgv bypass, with the main highway going straight through the middle of town, right next to the regional tertiary care hospital and going through the university campus. Throw in a moronic and user-expensive public transport system, and frankly I’m surprised we don’t get more traffic fatalities.

    • Rosie 26.1

      Great to hear it thanks TA.

      There is so much good craic going on on Open Mike today, barely time to reflect and no time to respond except to say that the music will always amplify the voices of the collective thought and experience of those who are itching for change. Big ups too to just saying for the classic Billy Bragg.

  22. joe90 27

    About that big freeze.

    Snow and ice are disappearing from the Arctic region at unprecedented rates, leaving behind relatively warmer open water, which is much less reflective to incoming sunlight than ice. That, among other factors, is causing the northern polar region of our planet to warm at a faster rate than the rest of the northern hemisphere. (And, just to state the obvious, global warming describes a global trend toward warmer temperatures, which doesn’t preclude occasional cold-weather extremes.)

    Since the difference in temperature between the Arctic and the mid-latitudes helps drive the jet stream (which, in turn, drives most US weather patterns), if that temperature difference decreases, it stands to reason that the jet stream’s winds will slow down. Why does this matter?

    Well, atmospheric theory predicts that a slower jet stream will produce wavier and more sluggish weather patterns, in turn leading to more frequent extreme weather. And, turns out, that’s exactly what we’ve been seeing in recent years. Superstorm Sandy’s uncharacteristic left hook into the New Jersey coast in 2012 was one such example of an extremely anomalous jet stream blocking pattern.

    When these exceptionally wavy jet stream patterns occur mid-winter, it’s a recipe for cold air to get sucked southwards. This week, that’s happening in spectacular fashion.

    http://qz.com/163636/how-global-warming-can-make-cold-snaps-even-worse/

    Interestingly the Arctic ice is very near its all-time low for this time of year.

    http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm

    And the process was predicted in 2004.

    By disturbing a massive ocean current, melting Arctic sea ice might trigger colder weather in Europe and North America.

    That’s the paradoxical scenario gaining credibility among many climate scientists. The thawing of sea ice covering the Arctic could disturb or even halt large currents in the Atlantic Ocean. Without the vast heat that these ocean currents deliver—comparable to the power generation of a million nuclear power plants—Europe’s average temperature would likely drop 5 to 10°C (9 to 18°F), and parts of eastern North America would be chilled somewhat less.

    http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2004/05mar_arctic/

  23. Philj 28

    Xox
    As the climate changes, established weather patterns will change, causing freaky weather to happen. The IPCC has detailed modelling showing a range of forecasts. A huge amount of of information.

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    Greens | 29-10
  • BNZ post record profits while leaving savers vulnerable
    A small part of the $850 million record profit posted by the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) today needs to be set aside to protect savers' deposits in the future, said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman today.Dr Norman was...
    Greens | 29-10
  • RBNZ U-turn shows monetary settings were wrong
    The Reserve Bank's U-turn on interest rates today shows monetary policy settings were wrong and New Zealanders have suffered unnecessarily through the loss of jobs and having to pay higher interest rates, the Green Party said today.Reserve Bank Governor Graeme...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Ports must take responsibility for shameful death toll
    Port companies must step up and take responsibility for a shameful toll of seven deaths and 133 serious accidents in the past three years, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says. The frightening figures – released by the Rail, Maritime and Transport...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Please help me get my Feed the Kids Bill to Select Committee
    Last week I took over the Feed the Kids Bill that Hone Harawira had introduced to Parliament. If passed, my Bill will provide government-funded breakfast and lunch in all decile 1 and 2 schools. Hungry kids can’t learn and are...
    Greens | 29-10
  • TVNZ Outsourcing Pasifika and Maori Programmes
    I’ve always been a big fan of our state broadcaster and I’ve particularly liked their range of current events programmes. But after Friday’s announcement that TVNZ will be sacking up to 40 staff by contracting out the Pacific and Maori...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Labour urges iwi leaders to meet with National
    Labour’s Māori Caucus has called on iwi leaders and national Māori organisations to seek urgent meetings with the National Government to directly express their concerns about employment law changes which will harm Māori workers. In an open letter sent today...
    Labour | 29-10
  • ACC’s reputation needs fix, not glitz
    Restoring public trust and confidence in ACC will take a lot more than a new communications strategy or social media blitz, says Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Under National, ACC has come to be perceived as insensitive, difficult to deal...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Lessons to be learned from police investigation
    The outcome of the so-called Roast Busters case should not put victims off reporting sexual crimes, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “This case has been mishandled from the start. Within days of police initially saying no charges had...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Anti-worker legislation is anti-Pacifica
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, will go down in history as being part of a Government that harmed his own people through anti-worker legislation, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Pacific people are among...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • The Final Fifth: The Last Great Task for Progressive New Zealand.
    MOST OF NEW ZEALAND’S social problems are concentrated among those living at the margins of what is otherwise a relatively wealthy society. Recently released international data on child poverty has exposed an acutely stressed social strata encompassing roughly 20 percent...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Myth Busting Rape Boasters
    In just one week a case that galvanised a nation into discussing rape culture is now being reframed as mischievous teen hi-jinx. One year ago the Roast Busters case came to the attention of the media and the public. This...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Workers rights weakened by new laws – fightback needed
    The government’s changes to the employment laws are designed to weaken workers bargaining power – at both the individual and collective level.   30-day rule The old law required an employer with a collective agreement in place to employ new...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – Where are Labour Candidates on disability?
    For the few people who know me (hello Mum), I am proudly New Zealand’s first Autistic Spectrum Lawyer, as well as being the very bottom Candidate on the Labour Party List. (64 out of 64). Being honoured like this is...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Patrick Gower interviews Social Housing Minister
    Bennett says National could sell off “thousands” of state houses but Housing NZ will still be the “dominant force” in providing social housing in NZ....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • The Nation: Lisa Owen interviews Mike Moore & Chris Liddell
    Lisa Owen interviews NZ Ambassador to the US Mike Moore and corporate high-flyer Chris Liddell about the US midterm elections....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • David Parker event – the future of work, Sun 2 Nov
    Labour leadership candidate David Parker, an experienced lawyer and businessman as well as a former senior government cabinet minister in the Helen Clark Government, will join three prominent New Zealanders in a panel discussion on Sunday to address...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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