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Open mike 14/01/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 14th, 2013 - 78 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

78 comments on “Open mike 14/01/2013”

  1. AsleepWhileWorking 1

    Wellington homelessness on the increase. No word about homeless families in this article.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/8173211/Rough-end-of-street-life-bites

    ” Mr Leon [Night Shelter Manager] agrees a housing shortage is one of the biggest problems. “Housing New Zealand isn’t building anymore, council isn’t building anymore but the need is increasing. Where does that lead?”

    Wellington City Council has about 2300 social housing units in the city and Housing NZ 8975, although only 1600 are in Wellington city.

    Both agencies have been upgrading their housing stock in the past year, but are keen to emphasise how all displaced tenants are successfully rehoused.

    Neither organisation is planning to increase their housing stock but talk enthusiastically about “partnering” with third parties to build affordable housing.

    Last May, Housing NZ kicked out 131 tenants from its Gordon Wilson complex after the building was found to be quake prone.

    In the Wellington region, the number of Housing NZ homes remains steady. However, while available housing hasn’t shrunk, the number of people on the high priority waiting list has more than tripled in the past two years. “

    • karol 1.1

      Thanks for the link, AWW. It’s good to see that a mainstream paper is taking notice.

      The article gives examples of the most visible, easiest to find and accessible homeless individuals (mostly single men): those sleeping rough in public spaces, and in shelters. It does mention where homeless families (especially children and women) will be found: couch-surfing, (over) crowding into houses and flats with other people.

      There are other places where there will be hidden homeless people: living in garages, in the spare rooms of friends and family, in caravans and tents on other people’s quarter acre sections, etc.

      Of course, focusing on examples of such single people living at the “sharp end” of homeless, gives a skewed perception, and won’t help a lot to get rid of some people’s misconceptions about the “undeserving poor”.

    • millsy 1.2

      Those ‘Easy Access’ flat are supposedly for providing transitional accomodation — ie support for the homeless to move into permanent housing. If the guy ended up on the street after his 6 months there, then we need to re look at that scheme and make changes,

      • bad12 1.2.1

        My thinking too, here’s what i think has occurred there, the particular ‘Private Organization’ has received Health Budget support to ‘help’ those with intellectual disabilities, including head injuries,

        As these contracts are structured, to receive ongoing funding over multi-year budget rounds the ‘Private Organization’ must show that X people have received the short term help and moved on as the ‘Bizness Plan’ of the organization stated to get the original funding,

        Or, this is how Tony Ryall is making cuts to Vote Health without having the Doctors and Nurses up in arms,

        Whatever the reason tho, that bloke should be in a HousingNZ home…

        • James 1.2.1.1

          Porirua has about 45 HNZC houses currently sitting empty, untenanted.

          Two blocks of 4 houses are empty. 1 each in those 4 is fire damaged. One house has been damaged since November 2010 and the whole block has been empty since then.
          The other block has been empty since February 2011.

          On my street there are two standalone HNZC houses both empty, and fire damaged. The roof has collapsed on one (necessitating a cheap n nasty fence with KEEP OUT signs sprinkled liberally on its length) while the other isnt in too bad a shape. Both have been empty since March 2012 and October 2012 respectively… I expect them to still be empty come November 2014.

          I’m not too sure whats worse. The seeming prevalence of firebugs receiving HNZC accommodation, or the fact that 10 houses are rotting away which could comfortably accommodate at least 3 families per house /sarc

    • David H 1.3

      Finally the MSM start to take notice of Poverty and Homelessness A pity they did not mention Families but it’s a start. Lets hope that this is not just a one off /filler piece. And if it picked up then Shonky and co will have to take notice and will ignore it at their peril.

  2. Jenny 2

    Climate Change Apologist, Colonial Viper and Climate Change Ignorer weka have accused me of asking the impossible in demanding that political parties particularly the Greens prioritise climate change over all their other policies. Whether they be the venal, getting cabinet seats, or the noble, ending poverty.

    Your job, [for anyone who hears this message], your job for the rest of your life, is to make the impossible possible…..

    • Bill 2.1

      Jenny. Apart from this dishonest ‘dogging’ of commentors that you indulge in – does it ever cross your mind, that thanks to years of vilification by major media, that if the Greens went all gung-ho on AGW they’d sink without a trace beneath a wave of public derision aided and abetted by the media? And does it ever cross your mind that if a lead on all of this is going to come from elected representatives (and I’m far from convinced that’s the best option), then for it to be in any way palatable to or accepted by a majority of people, it’s going to have to come from the likes of Labour or National? And are you aware that even then, the mainstream media will round on said party like the pack of stupid corporate dogs that they are and get down to ripping them apart? A Labour party or a National party might withstand that. But a Green party wouldn’t.

      Maybe think through what you are saying a little more and consider taking a third colour from your crayon box? The black and white routine isn’t just monotonous, it’s lacking in so many fronts that your reasonable and well founded passion comes across as…well, it doesn’t come across. It hits a stonewall of facepalm, head desk, eye roll, ‘oh, gawd here we go again’ frustration knowing that a good point is about to be obscured because the delivery’s like a flushing toilet with a whole pile of swirling crap dropped in on top.

      • weka 2.1.1

        Bill, Jenny doesn’t care what happens to the GP. She wants to them to be a glorified parliamentary lobby group, not a political party that forms government. She’s been pretty clear on this, that she believes that the GP should commit electoral suicide by going hard on CC, and give up aspirations of governance.

    • weka 2.2

      Jenny, I haven’t accused you of asking the impossible. What you ask is entirely possible. It’s just that it’s incredibly stupid.

      What I have in fact accused you of is being a selfish, hypocritical coward. You rant about what everyone else should do about CC, but you yourself are unwilling to give up the comfy western lifestyle that not only underpins the causes of AGW, but actively prevents society from doing anything about it. You refuse to look at the large body of work that’s been done by many reputable people on why Green Tech won’t save us, and thus you show that you are willing to let the world burn despite all your rhetoric. You refuse to look at or engage with ideas around peak oil and CC that don’t fit your own dogmatic view that everything would just be alright if we only had a leader like Churchill or the GP threw themselves on their sword.

      You repeatedly tell lies not only about the GP, but also about myself and CV (and presumably whoever else gets in your way). I actually felt bad about the dressing down I gave you on the weekend, but now I understand that it’s the only way to respond to you. You have almost zero integrity as commenter here in terms of ability to debate in a way that makes sense, or deal with views that don’t match your own. Quite bizarrely, you routinely slander and make offensive comments about the very people and groups that would be your natural allies. Others have pointed this out to you too, yet it makes no difference.

      I’m sure that other commenters find this bullshit debate between you and me and CV tedious. I certainly do. But until you stop telling lies about me, or until the moderators step in, I feel there’s nothing I can do but meet you with with the same level of disrespect you show me. This makes me sad, because it’s obvious you have a lot of passion and energy to do something useful about CC, but you remain unwilling to do so in a way that has meaning in the real world.

      • Populuxe1 2.2.1

        In other words, Jenny, to paraphrase weka’s relatively polite statement – if the Greens started ranting obsessively on the one point like you do, no one would vote for them or even pay attention after a while.

  3. karol 3

    Testing; the last two comments I’ve submitted – onto QOT’s DejaVu thread, have gone directly into auto-moderation.

    Edit: OK, this comment went thru OK.

    • QoT 3.1

      No idea why that’s happened on mine, karol!

      • karol 3.1.1

        They got released eventually, but I couldn’t see what the trigger words might have been. I was starting to think every comment I would submit on every thread would get siphoned off by the bot.

  4. ad 4

    Wasn’t it good to see Annette King come on this site discussing housing policy over the weekend?

    Maybe there’s a whole caucus out there somewhere that would like to engage as well.

    Maybe it’s time for the Green MPs to deign us with a visit?

    • bad12 4.1

      Yes and no!!!, sure it was good of Annette to enter into the fray, specially so considering that the Standard has the rep of ‘no quarter given debates’,

      The proof of the pudding tho is always in the eating, in this case ‘the pudding’ being the number of HousingNZ properties that a Labour lead Government is willing to add to that portfolio,

      This, Annette assured us, while restating Labour’s commitment to building up the HousingNZ numbers, is a work in progress so we will just have to wait a while i guess,

      While i have to take what She says at face value i am still mindful that between now and the 2014 election ‘things’ could change, i am still smarting from the election pledge Annette made during the 2011 campaign that benefit dependent children would be made eligible to receive Working for Families tax credits,

      It is apparent that from somewhere in the Party Annette was told that that was unlikely to happen and She had to embarrasingly back away from the prior announcement over the next week by announcing things like ‘this would be over time etc’,

      A big ‘ups’ has to be extended to Mike Smith for the visit of Annette King, my belief is that He was instrumental from His position in the Leaders office in that visit…

      • ad 4.1.1

        Yes I hoped the Great One had been instrumental in the visitation. I challenged him when he wrote his post to stop doing the Spokesperson’s job for them and geat the actual politician to front.

        Genter is lovely, but is was quite some time ago. Not we should presume upon our own self-importance for MPs to visit us. Maybe RogueTrooper is actually an MP 😉

        • bad12 4.1.1.1

          Nah, ‘Rouge’ sits way closer to God than that, we have to consider also that the ‘loud noise’ emanating from the Standard over the housing issue in the past month or so might have had Annette King fronting in an attempt to pacify us lot,

          Like i commented before, i will for now take the visit and Annette’s comments at face value but i am neither ‘hollering from the rooftops enthused’ about what was said and my ego hasn’t, (as yet), exploded the size of my head beyond it’s ability to separate the ‘chaff’ from the ‘wheat’,

          LOLZ, what would be a hoot is if both Labour and the Greens tasked one of their MP’s to engage with the Standard on the same basis as what us lot engage with each other,

          You know what i mean, roll up the sleeves, drop the policy paper vocab and give as good as they get…

    • bad12 4.2

      PS, the Greens Julie Ann Genter paid the Standard a Sunday afternoon visit a while back…

  5. bad12 5

    Homeless families usually have family that are willing to share with them, the sharp end as described in your link tends to have mostly as the client base those with psyche/addiction problems,

    Spend a month or two of nights watching Wellington’s streets and you get good at spotting the homeless among the crowds,of course once the crowd thins out the ‘homeless’ become very apparent and if you stay all night you can while watching the street cleaning gangs go about their daily toil identify the ‘Night Shelter crew’ as they arrive from their slumber,

    It’s actually relatively ‘hard’ to be homeless in Wellington City, the social agencies,City Council, and, HousingNZ all work reasonably closely together,

    There are a couple of ‘drivers’ in the tripling of the ‘urgent need’ category that are on the HousingNZ waiting list,

    First, the ‘unintended consequences’ of former Prime Minister Helen Clark doing a deal with the Wellington City Council where Government would subsidize the upgrading of most of the housing stock that the Council has in tower blocks,

    This ongoing program has meant that the Council tenants in any tower block being re-furbished have to be found housing elsewhere in either the Council or HousingNZ’s portfolio,

    It would have been nice ae, if the ‘thinking’ at the time had of seen this ‘unintended’ consequence’ where having to house a tower block of tenants elsewhere has denied other’s in need access as the total of housing units available declined during the refurbishment,

    The solution of course would have been to build another large block of flats so as to be able to house those tenants effected by the Council refurbishment thus allowing the ‘normal’ tenant turnover in the portfolio to continue,

    Exacerbating that is the paranoia after the Christchurch Earthquakes, where both Council and HousingNZ have been assessing their portfolio for buildings which might not meet the new standards,

    Again it would have been nice to think that both agencies befor they got around to removing the tenants en masse from buildings deemed at risk would have built a suitable alternative, not doing so has simply increased the numbers in urgent need of housing,

    There is of course a sub-set of ‘homeless people’ who for obvious reasons i am not going to identify too closely, they live in the garages of relatives and in some cases where their is no garage the garden shed is fitted out as their bedroom, the legality of living this way is questionable so advocating for such people can be fraught as if they are forced to leave this form of accomodation ‘the street’ is the obvious next stop…

    • AwakeWhileWorking 5.1

      If as you say it is relatively hard to be homeless in Wellington then since the number of people listed for priority housing with HNZ or WCC is increasing, AND the number of people showing up at the night shelter has increased from 30 a night to between 50 and 100 we can only assume it is getting easier to be homeless in Wellington than it used to be.

    • Populuxe1 5.2

      I think you may have overlooked some of the more vulnerable groups such as the mentally ill for whom indigence is an aspect of their pathology, and abused youth – GLBT in particular – who are very distrusting of authority.

      • bad12 5.2.1

        Yep, i understand there are little sub-sets of homeless people who like the mentally ill are constantly ‘on the roam’ that it is extremely difficult to either reach or keep housed even if they can be reached,

        Wellington’s inner city ministry does an excellent job of working with these people, along with the more feral alcoholics providing among other things a banking service which means among other things that should they be able to be housed the inner city ministry manages their money so as to make sure the rent is at least paid,

        Of course among the psychotic and the schizophrenic there is that propensity to be driven by their affliction to just up and off for months at a time, some disappearing off of the face of the Earth and others appearing months later unable or unwilling to say where they have been,(lolz perhaps kidnapped by the aliens and taken away for ‘probing’)…

    • bad12 6.1

      Here come the Slum-lords, gush,gush,gush go the real estate agents, where’s Gerry chiming in with ‘well if ‘they’ choose to live in them’ in defense of the Slum-lords who will as more labour arrives for the re-build increasingly ‘cream it’ renting out a growing number of slum-tenancies room by room at an ever increasing cost citing ‘demand’ being high from those ‘wanting’ to live in these wrecks…

      • rosy 6.1.1

        Slumlords? They’re “savvy investors” according to Stuff /sarc. Pretty sure Gerry will be happy to see the market working to provide, as he expected.

        I wonder how a WoF for rentals will affect their savvy investments.

        • bad12 6.1.1.1

          I find the idea of a building WOF for rental accommodation to be actually dangerous for the tenants until such time as the State gets it’s A into G and builds the necessary housing to accommodate those tenants who would be forced to move if such a regime were in place,

          The reason tenants move into such sub-standard accommodation is simply the worse a properties condition is the less they will be charged for rent,

          If WOF inspections for tenancies become the norm, the landlord forced to fix sub-standard property will simply put up the rent to cover the cost and if the tenant can then not afford the raised rent they will be forced to look elsewhere…

        • The Al1en 6.1.1.2

          “I wonder how a WoF for rentals will affect their savvy investments.”

          Probably not as much as criminal charges if you rent a garage as a domicile will.

      • Lanthanide 6.1.2

        I can well imagine some of the houses have been written off but are perfectly livable. Doesn’t make them a ‘slum’.

        The whole point of the capitalist system is that when demand outstrips supply, price rises and in doing so encourages more supply to be made available. Surely people are only turning these houses into rentals because the demand, and commensurate price, is there.

        The alternative would be no house at all. I’m not sure why that’s better.

        • bad12 6.1.2.1

          Disagree, gerry and the other National Party functionary currently Governing Christchurch have a definite knowledge of the expected size of the workforce that will be imported from elsewhere to rebuild Christchurch,

          Anyone with an ounce of brains having such knowledge would simply build the tower blocks of accommodation necessary to house this workforce, such accommodation could after the rebuild make a great addition to the HousingNZ portfolio,

          Glad to see you firmly in the ‘camp’ of capitalism in your support for slumlords who it is obvious as these houses cannot be insured will not spend any amount of money on them into the future, they may not be quite slum conditions now but given a few years of cracked foundations they soon will be,

          I can well imagine the out-right glee of the slumlords as they crank the rent through the roof as more rebuild workers arrive in a shrunken accommodation market, none of this accomodation will have been assessed for asbestos in the ceilings and it’s highly unlikely in many cases that a bit of cracking in the ceiling will provoke such ‘investors’ to investigate nor fix the problem…

          • Lanthanide 6.1.2.1.1

            “Anyone with an ounce of brains having such knowledge would simply build the tower blocks of accommodation necessary to house this workforce, such accommodation could after the rebuild make a great addition to the HousingNZ portfolio,”

            Dormitory housing might be appropriate for temporary workers, but the people of CHCH (of which I am one) still need somewhere to live. There still aren’t enough houses to go around as it is.

            “your support for slumlords”

            I don’t know why you’re calling them slumlords. I was listening to this on the radio on the way home, about houses that were worth $500k being bought for $220k because they were damaged. A $500k house is hardly likely to be a ‘slum’, sure it might be damaged but as I said, a damaged house is still better than no house to live in.

            “I can well imagine the out-right glee of the slumlords as they crank the rent through the roof as more rebuild workers arrive in a shrunken accommodation market”

            The “slumlords” as you persist in calling them, are increasing the size of the accommodation market, not shrinking it.

            Just as a data point, I recently moved house. Previous place I was renting for $300/week was a 1 bedroom cottage in a nice area – good condition, heat pump, but with a small kitchen and no dishwasher. Landlord has now rented it out to a couple for $350/week, who were apparently happy to pay it.

            • bad12 6.1.2.1.1.1

              NO DISHWASHER, god what savagery, how can anyone be forced to live in such third world squalor,

              If you can happily afford to cough 300-350 a week for one bedroom accommodation you or the couple you highlight do not interest me one iota as far as your housing situation is concerned,

              My concern is more aimed at the likes of the Canterbury University catering worker recently made redundant who now has 7 dollars a week to live upon after paying rent…

              • karol

                LOL. Never had a dishwasher in my life – apart from my own 2 hands. It’s not something I ever consider when looking for somewhere to rent.

                • bad12

                  Yeah ae, like the labour and time consumed putting the stuff in the dishwasher and taking it out again is probably more than what you expend running the sink and washing em that way,

                  Then there’s the consideration of power usage and if your a bit Green the utter waste of it,

                  I have used one as the galley slave in Wellington kitchens washing up after 120 people have dined out,LOLZ one of the most laborious low payed jobs on the planet,and some of the tight A/holes running these kitchens won’t even chuck in a meal along with that minimum wage…

                  • The Al1en

                    I’ve never owned a dishwasher, either, but I’ve long been familiar with using all the clean crockery before having to do the washing up. 🙂

                    • karol

                      LOL. I think a dishwasher is very helpful at work, with the quantity of stuff washed.

                      Some parents tell me a dishwasher is cheaper on the electricity with the amount of kitchen and eating utensils they have to wash.

              • Lanthanide

                “NO DISHWASHER, god what savagery, how can anyone be forced to live in such third world squalor,

                If you can happily afford to cough 300-350 a week for one bedroom accommodation you or the couple you highlight do not interest me one iota as far as your housing situation is concerned,”

                I was merely giving you an idea of what accommodation in CHCH costs at the moment. $350 for a one-bedroom cottage IMO is very steep.

                But hey, you’re against private people providing more housing on the rental market. Apparently you’d rather the houses just remain empty or be demolished.

                Yes, it would be nice if the government or someone would step in an build houses, and I think they should. But even if the government did do that, surely having another 100 extra houses provided by the private sector on top of anything provided by the government would still be better than not providing those 100 houses.

                So I still don’t understand your willingness to call these people slumlords for providing a necessary and wanted service (and it is a service – these houses can’t get insurance, so they’re taking a big risk on the properties burning down etc) and I really don’t think you’ve made any rational case as to why it is a bad thing.

                “My concern is more aimed at the likes of the Canterbury University catering worker recently made redundant who now has 7 dollars a week to live upon after paying rent…”

                I recall the one you were talking about. There were many comments on that stuff article about what she *needed* to do, such as downsize her living accommodation to a level that was commensurate with her new income. Yes, life sucks for some people at some times. But once again, taking liveable houses out of the market, which you are advocating, doesn’t help people in her situation one iota.

                • Colonial Viper

                  So I still don’t understand your willingness to call these people slumlords for providing a necessary and wanted service (and it is a service – these houses can’t get insurance, so they’re taking a big risk on the properties burning down etc)

                  But why can’t the houses get insurance. Oh yes, because they are considered by the acturies and the building assessors of being at higher risk of things like fires, flooding and suffering other significant structural damage.

                  Yet people are expected to live in these higher risk homes with their children, and landlords renting out these uninsurable properties to make good profits on is still considered respectable?

                  And if a 3 bedroom house can hold 2 families, why not squeeze two families into there, it’s simply “pragmatic” to lower standards and these people have very few options after all so why not push them in.

                  And to make a few good bucks out of this compromised environment, maybe that’s why the term “slum lord” has been used.

                  • Lanthanide

                    “Yet people are expected to live in these higher risk homes with their children, and landlords renting out these uninsurable properties to make good profits on is still considered respectable?”

                    No, people are not “expected” to live in those houses. It’s their choice as a private individual as to whether they live in that accommodation or not.

                    “And if a 3 bedroom house can hold 2 families, why not squeeze two families into there, it’s simply “pragmatic” to lower standards and these people have very few options after all so why not push them in.”

                    Now I would agree that would be slumlord behaviour. However there is no evidence of this happening in this case, outside of your suggestion of it.

                    “And to make a few good bucks out of this compromised environment, maybe that’s why the term “slum lord” has been used.”

                    Once again, I don’t understand why it is preferable for there to be no house at all.

  6. Pete 7

    It was good to hear Radio NZ start a short series called A Beginner’s Guide to Parliament this morning. Just the sort of thing that would be suitable for a civics curriculum in this country.

    • New Zealand’s government needs to be reformed, cutting down government CEO’s to size and putting in more checks and balances would be a start. But National seems committed to raising salaries of the top levels of government, while sacking thousands of low paid public service workers (in the military, schools, in foreign affairs and trade,etc).

    • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 7.2

      Pete +1

  7. KhandallaViper 8

    We will own the answers, so we must come up with the answers in the first place.

    The Standard bloggers and readers are positive people. They care enough to get engaged, and more.

    Many general and many specific issues have been raised and debated on theses pages in the past year. The tempo increased significantly with the start of the Constitutional Review and has been white-hot since then.

    Identifying problems and shaping answers without being able to advance/influence/progress the solution is very frustrating. Feeling that a rump in the party is fighting against that change is infuriating.

    Here are a few things you can do to be in a position to shape the answer and to see them through to execution:

    Host a BBQ and don’t invite your MP. She/he will definitely show up with a least two good bottles of wine. They are paranoid, the insecure darlings.

    Go to the Summer School in two weeks time. David Shearer will be making another policy speech and many of the movers and shakers will be there. It is hosted by Young Labour and is great fun.

    Ask for an urgent extraordinary LEC meeting to discuss your frustrations. If your Sec/Chair says that is not possible, then ask all the members you know/like to come together to discuss how you can collectively own the answer. Ditto your Sectoral group.

    Ask your MP to meet over a pint/glass. Those politicians that do not drink usually loose elections quickly. Ditto for your NZ Council rep.

    Remember, you own the answer. That is what the voting at Conference was all about.

  8. The Voice of Reason 9

    A couple of tech questions for the SYSOP:

    I see that the RSS feed is now going through FeedBurner. Is there any way to correctly time stamp the comments? At the moment they’re on one of the US time zones. It’s like living in the past, maaan!

    And, just wondering what happened to the edit options (Bold, Italic, link etc.) They were pretty useful, particularly for links.

    Cheers,
    TRP

    • lprent 9.1

      I just shifted to Feedburner a few hours ago because the feeds were getting stuck in the cache system (no post updates since friday). I’ll have a look at the time stamps after I get through this pile of compilation bugs (ie any time between now and midnight).

      The tinymce comment editor fell victim to the update of wordpress to 3.5. They finally started to use a more modern version of tinymce. I can repair it or look for a less problematic system or both. I’ll patch something in over the next couple of days.

      Of course if you can control the weather and drop the humidity in Auckland, it’d help speed things up 😈

      • Te Reo Putake 9.1.1

        Cheers, Lprent, much appreciated. Nothing I can do about the weather (and after a week’s holiday of mind numbing and body sapping mid-thirties in Gisborne, I know what you mean!).

        • lprent 9.1.1.1

          It shows up as being in GMT on the feed XML, which is correct. Nothing weird like PST.

          The reader should display in your local time. Ah so the default silly reader in the link from feedburner – which does not.

          Yep. Subscribing to comments in http://www.google.co.nz/reader and in the ubuntu default reader Akregator do correctly display the datetime in the local timezone.

          I’ll have a look to see if there is anyway to fix the default feedburner page to do the same

        • Rogue Trooper 9.1.1.2

          Great scott! Thank God for Punk Rock (oh we’re so pretty, oh so pretty,ahh, we’re vacant) 😉

  9. BLiP 10

    .

    Interesting perspective from a recent net “apostate”:

    . . . At last we come to politics, where I believe Lanier has been most farsighted—and which may be the deep source of his turning into a digital Le Carré figure. As far back as the turn of the century, he singled out one standout aspect of the new web culture—the acceptance, the welcoming of anonymous commenters on websites—as a danger to political discourse and the polity itself. At the time, this objection seemed a bit extreme. But he saw anonymity as a poison seed. The way it didn’t hide, but, in fact, brandished the ugliness of human nature beneath the anonymous screen-name masks. An enabling and foreshadowing of mob rule, not a growth of democracy, but an accretion of tribalism . . .

    I’m not sure I agree but, coming from Lanier, worthy of consideration, I suggest. This anti-anonymous meme is coming in from all sorts of quarters, particularly the Right but also “Lefties” like Brian Edwards and various Labour MPs. Perhaps they have been captured by the business agenda of transforming the internet from the town square to a shopping mall but given Lanier’s wider comments on the economy maybe that’s not such a bad thing?

    (Hat Tip: Arts and Letters Daily.)

    • bad12 10.1

      The reality tho is the opposite, by being anonymous we are simply all equal…

      • NoseViper (The Nose knows) 10.1.1

        bad12
        Trouble is – some are more equal than others. Depends on what level of probity you want to speak from.

  10. Rogue Trooper 11

    used to read ALD 🙂 (in fact, I remember sending them l R; flattered, wish someone would offer me employment, even a home would helpful)

    “The true path is a middle way between ascetic denial and pleasurable indulgence”

    “Nirvana follows from a disciplined curiosity about the texture of experience, stilling the compulsions”

    “…guide the brain with beautiful compassion; on this basis anything can be built, more compassion, more luminosity, greater understanding”-Head Trip : Adventures on The Wheel of Consciousness-Jeff Warren.

    “When you have gained some experience in the process of liberating thoughts, they are said to undo themselves, as a snake might untie a knot in it’s own body” -Going Buddhist : Peace and Emptiness-Peter J. Conradi.

    “May we attend to our implicational cognitive systems,more than our propositional”, ( in addition to our participatory consciousness).-Owen Barfield.

    Is this a (2nd)? Axial Age-Karl Jaspers

    It is not helpful to display to your inferiors that what you disdain in your superiors

    “Not helpful to offer to your neighbours on the Left what you dislike in your neighbours on the Right”.

    40 Ways Trees Can Save Us
    http://www.theecologist.org/how_to_make_a_difference/climate_change_and_energy/841418/diana_beresfordkroeger_the_woman_who_speaks_for_the_trees.html
    remember The Red and The Green (haemoglobin and chlorophyll)
    Plus
    Jane Goodall and Birute Galdikas (all Three Women)
    or
    Why I left Goldman Sachs (or never considered finance in the first place)
    http://www.amazon.com/Why-Left-Goldman-Sachs-Street/dp/1455527475

    welllll…

  11. weka 12

    Lynn, are you around? I just did an advanced search and all the hits came back with the date 12:00 am, January 1st, 1970.

    • lprent 12.1

      Yep. Looks like a bug in the sphinx search. I’ll look at it later tonight. And damnit I already noticed it and forgot to fix it…

      BTW: midnight on the 1st of Jan 1970 is the NULL date for most *nix computers. They store the date/time in seconds since then.

  12. Rogue Trooper 13

    V fah (Bury my heart at wounded) knee Cameron ;).you and / or your associates have too much time on your hands.(I’ve always been too trusting, but I not worry) 🙂

  13. GeoffC 14

    Help need…
    You all know and understand QE in all it’s forms 1 thru to 3 etc well I need a new term framed in language that will get resonance and traction with both msm and the public?

    • GeoffC 14.1

      Here’s an idea
      Kiwbuild to kiwi bank mortgages to mortgage backed securities bought from kiwi bank by QE.

      • Colonial Viper 14.1.1

        Also need to fundamentally reconceptualise what money is, in the mind of the public…money is a way to bring workers and materials together to get important things built.

        • GeoffC 14.1.1.1

          Yes my friend but without invest growth um capitalism or some replacement then we have very little real growth over last few decades that actually provided both money supply and demand for consumables that in turn provide more employment for all that spare labour.

          Personally I am a leveller all same no one greater that the least…

          • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1.1

            Well all that is true…Cullen’s economic growth and employment miracle was built on a massive spiking of foreign sourced private debt 2002-2008.

            • GeoffC 14.1.1.1.1.1

              Yip housing speculAtion created debt demand, that money had to come from somewhere…
              Kiwbuild here we come..

        • bad12 14.1.1.2

          Or, money is simply the means by which we exchange our labour for our daily needs, money only becomes a problem when the supply of it to those with the least of it is constrained in such a way as to not allow the exchange of labour for daily needs to occur…

  14. KhandallaViper 15

    http://asianinvasion2006.blogspot.co.nz/2013/01/labour-struggles-with-its-direction.html?m=1

    Pete George over on Asianinvasion showing his lack of basic undstanding of the Labour Party selection process.

    “And if the vote did go to the party I doubt there is anyone who would challenge Shearer”

    The “trigger” challenge has to start within the Caucus. The members only get to have a say if their MPs understand from the members that the Leadership needs validation by the members. Then life will be sweet and we can get on with kicking the Nats, John Banks and Peter Dunne out of the Treasury benches.

    (Wellington Lefties and Greenies: Please, o please help Charles beat Dunne)

    • karol 16.1

      Ah, I know the feeling of being the shorty in the crowd, especially when people get out of their seats to stand and cheer – not a helpful box in sight.

  15. QoT 17

    Awwww, isn’t it cute? Muzza’s been doing a social experiment on us the whole time. :roll:

    [Note: link to Lauda Finem post, which is most kindly described as incoherent, made against The Standard.]

    • McFlock 17.1

      So one outcome of Muzz’ social experiment is to conclude that NZ has been damaged by folks experimenting on it so much?

      Fascinating. NUDIST, I wonder?

    • karol 17.2

      Oh, I shouldn’t have followed that link. Laughing out loud at the join the (largely invisible) dots from our sysop to Margaret Wilson via the Uni of Waikato, along with some creative writing about anal proclivities.

    • weka 17.3

      Didn’t Lauda Finem get a ban from ts a while back?

      Ah, yes…. http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-04012013/#comment-569281

      • QoT 17.3.1

        Apparently that wasn’t actually Lauda Finem, it was some Brave Courageous Speaking-Truth-To-Power Long-Time Reader of Lauda Finem. Who used the first person plural a heck of a lot, and professed to know a lot about what Lauda Finem intends to publish in future.

        I may disagree with David Shearer on many things, but if Lauda Finem’s emails read anything like their posts, chucking their emails in the bin is not one of them.

    • Mary 17.4

      Interesting he’s gone to The Standard to find out about “mob behaviour”, “herd mentality” and hypocrisy. Why all that time and effort when he could just spend five minutes on Whaleoil?

    • felixviper 17.5

      Where have I heard that ‘I’m really only here to conduct research’ bullshit before?

      Oh that’s right, from Pete George, who coincidentally also has a website dedicated to writing about The Standard.

  16. Rogue Trooper 18

    Very Sad
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ftJZomwDhxQ
    (at least I am better informed than I was Before)

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  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 day ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    1 day ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 day ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    2 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    3 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    4 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    5 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    5 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    5 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    5 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    5 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    5 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    5 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    6 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    6 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    6 days ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    7 days ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    7 days ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    1 week ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago
  • Under-reporting shows need to review quota system
    The Government must launch an independent review into New Zealand’s 30-year-old Quota Management System following a new report suggesting gross under-reporting of catch in the New Zealand fishing industry, Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker says.  “The Auckland University report found… ...
    1 week ago
  • Investigations into tertiary institutions overdue
    A Tertiary Education Commission investigation into the Tai Poutini Polytechnic is overdue and should have been launched last year, Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “Labour has been calling for an inquiry into potential rorts at Tai Poutini… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investigations into tertiary institutions overdue
    A Tertiary Education Commission investigation into the Tai Poutini Polytechnic is overdue and should have been launched last year, Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “Labour has been calling for an inquiry into potential rorts at Tai Poutini… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where is the fair share for most New Zealanders?
    Most New Zealanders reading the news that chief executive pay has risen 12 per cent in the last year will be wondering when they are going to get their fair share, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “More and more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where is the fair share for most New Zealanders?
    Most New Zealanders reading the news that chief executive pay has risen 12 per cent in the last year will be wondering when they are going to get their fair share, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “More and more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Mega media merger is bad news
    Some people call newspapers “tomorrow’s fish and chips” but this week’s news around a mega media merger is not an issue we should discard. Media giants Fairfax and APN News & Media announced they were in discussions to merge their… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • Mega media merger is bad news
    Some people call newspapers “tomorrow’s fish and chips” but this week’s news around a mega media merger is not an issue we should discard. Media giants Fairfax and APN News & Media announced they were in discussions to merge their… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • National puts Easter trading in the too hard basket
    All Labour MPs will vote against National’s move to leave Easter trading laws up to councils, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain-Lees Galloway says.  “Despite this being a conscience vote, Labour MPs are united in their opposition to the Government’s moves… ...
    2 weeks ago

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