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Open mike 25/09/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 25th, 2012 - 170 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…

170 comments on “Open mike 25/09/2012”

  1. Bored 1

    Watched the “News” last night, sad evidence of the global depression coming home to roost in NZ as miners and rail workers went down the road. The thing that struck a chord was that nobody, politicians of either side, workers, bosses had any answer. They are all caught up in a paradigm that straightjackets their thinking and response. To quote Kunstler we have “no credible model of a postindustrial economy that would permit our accustomed comfort and convenience to continue as is” .

    We need to find a credible model fast: the thing that is sad about the “left” is that they have no credible response to the crisis unfolding. The “Right” always ask “Where is the money coming from?” The “Left” assume the money merely needs redistribution. Meanwhile a plague afflicts both houses, one of myopia and lack of prescience.

    • lprent 1.1

      They really don’t have a good model.

      • Ed 1.1.1

        That’s because the “right’ always know where the money is coming from – borrowing.

        Both Labour and Green have generally been careful to say where the money is coming from, but the “where’s the money coming from” meme appears to be so entrenched that even commentators on The Standard are accepting it as valid. Why are detailed funding proposals only required from left parties? I cannot now recall which policies were being referred to, but doing only what really does provide a good return on investment for the Roads of “National” significance well covered one policy.

        Of course by the time the next election comes around National may well have let a contract to do some of that building – it would not surprise me if they bought off some supporters by letting contracts in the lead up to the election. That does make it difficult for Labour/Green to commit to the detail of such matters before an election campaign.

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.1.1

          This conversation will go no where useful. Kunstler and Greer would both agree that money is not a resource (unlike coal or steel or a machine shop) and in no way does it need to limit what needs to be done – unless you wish to continue to try and live within the insane monetary system set up by central bankers and the shadow banking system of debt based credit.

      • Bill 1.1.2

        Maybe it’s we who need a good model. One thats gradual implementation doesn’t rely on them ‘getting it’. One that empowers us and leaves them the choice to participate or rattle around the dustbin of history for a while.

        And we got one of them. Models I mean. Substantive democracy across all spheres of life including, crucially,the economy.

        • muzza 1.1.2.1

          100% Bill!

          People seem to forget or not understand that the current model is working just great for the establishment and their objectives, which is why nothing is going to change, unless WE make it change!

          Start with the monetary supply control issue, and work our way out from there..

          Stop waiting for anyone inside the current system to act out, or even speak out, its not going to happen. WE will have to form our own response, think of Syriza in Greece as lines to think along.

          Take control of the money supply, and we can begin to take control of our future, because currently its in the hands of people who do NOT care about us!

          • Jokerman 1.1.2.1.1

            interesting insight into ‘moving people on’ from the coast muzza
            they certainly do not want too many people living there and valuing the environment a round them

            • muzza 1.1.2.1.1.1

              Jokerman, thats because it all looks rather contrived to me whats going on.

              If an outcome wanted was to remove people from any given area, then thats not too difficult to manufacture eh!

          • Bored 1.1.2.1.2

            Muzza / Bill, agree with the “us” sentiments. Dimtri Orlov recently was talking about “sovereignty” and failed “states”. He talked about the western model of the state and how these constructs can become defunct, how some become lawless and ungovernable. As we watch Europe there are calls for the fragmentation of what were cogent modern states in Spain (Basque and Catalans favour an exit from Spain), Scotland (has a strong movement to separate from Westminster), the balkans and USSR have already fallen apart. Hungary has told the EU and the IMF (plus Monsanto) to take a running jump. Britains ratio of debt to GDP now exceeds Greece.

            What I think we are witnessing is a fracturing of the financial imperial model with a reversion to localism. Its the “us” in action.

            • prism 1.1.2.1.2.1

              I get the feeling that the super country like the USA with states tied into the federal model and presidential leadership that is bound to be isolated from the major population of ordinary people living ordinary lives and hoping for living wages plus extra for a holiday, is not a good model.

              Then I get this image of a sports team with their arms around each others shoulders buoying up each other, speaking their goals, touching and supporting each other. A small country like NZ could bond together and get most on board.

              But we have at present a country where many prefer to separate themselves in splendid isolation. And that would have to change to get a cohesive aspirational society that has a place for everyone at their level of competence. We would have to all plan together, and be aware of others achievements and stick together not all being the same but sharing the same goals and taking interest in each other. We could not continue to drop out individually when we feel we’ve got to some financial and social level that elevates and isolates us in pseudo presidential fashion above the masses.

              The present snobbery, self-satisfaction, superiority and disdain for those not at the level of the wealthy and elegant living class, cuts across ideas of being proud NZs together and making a good country for all.

              • Bored

                What you say Prism is the hope I hang onto: that we are still small enough to be cogent. We might also consider in previous times of economic discord we habitually divide ourselves into the picket and Masseys cossacks.

              • muzza

                Prism, yeah thats the stuff we need, but where is the turnaround going to come from, and what are people going to relate to, when they have only been told for decades that its all about number 1!

                For mine, the turnaround can only come when there is a political entity which is formed of, and represents the people of NZ, all of them, but especially the workers, the vulnerable and those who do not see themselves as part of the establishment.

                There are many more people in that club than the establishment, and that is what keeps them having to try and control the middle ground, that is why you can forget abotu Labour!

                Bored, I do also hang onto the same hope as yourself, but the formation of what I refer to above has to happen soon, and has to come from pure people power. Anything less than that, and the hope will soon be gone.

                There are many on here located in various parts of the country, who share more than enough brain cells, and capability to start getting together to nut something out.

                I know that many here have their eggs in a basket with parties, but you are all wasting your energy. If people are part of the current system, there are very few who can be part of a new one, and the same applies to political parties, they have to go!

                Get cracking people, join up, make contact with eachother, and start working on something which could be a game changer!

                First thing needed is an agreement on what the top few “policy” issues would be..Ill start

                1: NZ control of money issuence

                • Bored

                  #2 Balance import and export receipts.

                • vto

                  .
                  3. Enact policies which rapidly concentrate ownership of everything on these islands into the hands of the people who live in these islands.

                • prism

                  muzza
                  Haven’t the Greens been attempting to do this? I belonged to Jim Anderton’s New Labour and went to meetings where a lot of old guys in home knitted cardigans and their wives, no doubt similar, were the main attendees.

                  Younger working class people I feel now identify themselves as middle class if they are working full time, and superior to the unemployed who are seen as lazy and happy to be dependent on others largesse. I don’t think many young people have any understanding of political reality at all and why there are growing numbers of long term unemployed. As long as they have a job and can drive their garden sheds to the mall, and set up the barbie with convivial company and lots of beer, then they’re sweet. That’s why Jokey Hen is so popular, he identifies to the public with barbies and drinking beer out of a bottle. He’s one of us they think. Textor Crosby PR stuff.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    No, I don’t think this is quite right. For starters, these people would love to identify with a solid, salt of the earth, working class based party.

                    Do we have one?

                    • prism

                      CV
                      Labour become tawdry, a has-been limping back into the fray after the 1984 pasting although it has managed to keep standing. But it has lost its vision, its feeling for ordinary people, too many fat-neck lawyers now. (Note Julia Gillard is an ex lawyer.) Lawyers understand the law, some understand how it shapes our lives unequally but hey can’t we have some other type without descending to Poorer Benefits.

                      And I was thinking of my original idea that having a list would allow many young pollies to learn the ropes and move up. But now I see that the old ones have worn a groove in their sheepskins so that can’t work. Perhaps part of Labour revitalisation would come if MPs and PMs in any party could only stand three times. Thinking of Hoover who I think was in his eminent position for 38 years and other USA long-term fossils, long terms can undercut democracy and new worthy representatives.

                      Muzza dismissed Jim Anderton as establishment and so apparently no good. It’s the thinking about policy and direction and methods surely that is most important. I just heard a UK interviewer with a Mexican man in USA and he was saying he would vote for Ronald Reagan if he was back. But she didn’t ask him why, what had he done for you that was so good?

                  • muzza

                    Prism,

                    Perhaps they have, but the Greens are still carrying perception baggage around with them, and frankly Jim Anderton is establishment anyway, so I would not be too put off by that turn out.

                    What you say is right about Key and those who “feel him”, but in many cases, again they want to put their vote somewhere, so they put it with who that feel represent them, because they are told its “your or them”.

                    The real problem is that politics seeks to drive a wedge between people and exploit differences in “class” , as you will appreciate, and we are consistantly told that its your kids shooling or the ” housing for bludgers”, grannys hip opertion or some “more money for bludgers”…

                    If NZ had control of its money supply then the ability to drive that wedge becomes much more difficult to achieve, because it becomes a case of education, health, housing, and looking after the vulnerable and everything else, is on the table, not being us as a weapon to divide us. That is a game changer, and people will get on board.

                    Key is not one of us, you, me or anyone who posts on this site that cares about this country, and the people in it, is one of us!

                    That is what people will get on baord with!

                    EDIT – CV, no we don’t have one, and yes people would leap all over it!

                  • millsy

                    “Younger working class people I feel now identify themselves as middle class if they are working full time, and superior to the unemployed who are seen as lazy and happy to be dependent on others largesse. I don’t think many young people have any understanding of political reality at all and why there are growing numbers of long term unemployed. As long as they have a job and can drive their garden sheds to the mall, and set up the barbie with convivial company and lots of beer, then they’re sweet.”

                    The trouble is, they forgot as children they forgot they grew up in a household with a 4% Housing Corp mortgage and a Universal Family benefit, with Dad’s award wages more than enough to pay the mortgage, the bills, dinner and a little treat now and then. Back then, Dad’s wages were enough for Mum to stay home, ready with some milk and cookies when the kids come home, as well as a beaming smile.

                    Of course when the kids grew up, they swallowed the lies being fed to them by right wing politicans and the news media about how, before 1984 was a hell hole with strikes every 5 mins, margarine avalible only on a doctors prescription, and everything was expensive (while ignoring that at least if people had jobs and high wages, they would be able to afford them).

                    • Great comment.

                      Memory has been forgotten. 

                    • prism

                      millsy
                      You paint nice nostalgic pictures. Everything wasn’t that good and cruisy when Mum worked at home looking after the kids and filling the biscuit tins with home baking. Mums wanted to be able to earn and contribute money to the household and not be just a dependent housebound mother disregarded by the male world. At first her income used to provide extras for the family and discretionary money with a nice frock for herself, now it just disappears on basic living costs.

                      NZs wanted to get on and better themselves but there was an attempt to break through a sort of economic see-saw, inflation bringing demands for higher wages with an annual repetition.

                      The model now is to pay below inflation so as it stays low. The theoretical side of playing with economics seems more important than its use as a tool in understanding the needs of individuals and what living wage provides for these. The lower wages are supposed to leave more funds for companies to invest and so bring more jobs. Well that cake hasn’t risen, looks like a new recipe is required to pay to produce Mum’s biscuits.

                      (Actually I have just been eating some Griffins biscuits – once a NZ company sold to USA NABISCO in the 1960′s and tossed from one firm to another since then. They are on a low price supermarket special of $1.99, it seems as if they have reduced the quality of ingredients so they can be super cheap. And the product has a legal shelf life, apparently, of nearly a year. No wonder they don’t taste the same as they once did. And these ones are produced in Fiji.)

                • Colonial Viper

                  Muzza: shall we register “THE STANDARD” as a political party? I’d join as a member :D

                  • muzza

                    CV – I don’t see why not, but then it’s not my site.

                    There are many capable, caring people who post,comment on here, and how many of those people use their vote on something which they know is not going to change.

                    How many of them want to vote becuse “its all we got”, and how many of them if focused in the right direction, could really pull together and make a huge dent in the current system. The time is right for exactly that sort of start up.

                    The intelligence, and by that I mean the academic and non academic intelligence, on this site is what personally keeps me coming back here, and knowing that there are so many people who clearly are thinking, and deeply aware that NZ is in real trouble, and want to help try to put it right. Imagine what could happen if the energy, capabilities and intelligence were harnessed, and put into action…

                    An organic “party” by genuine people, with altruistic intentions would be quite something, right.

                    • Foreign Waka

                      Before any bullet point issues can be added – the very first action has to be the establishment of a constitution. I mean – the real McCoy for everyone. If that is not done, fractions will build and the harder the times the greater the possibility of a civil war.
                      As for an economic model, I belief that the idea of self responsibility is the right way to go. Equally, responsibility to the society as a whole. If exercised by everyone (!), there should be no poverty. However, I am absolutely against forcing people to behave, think and do as one group sees fit as this would be just as bad as the oligarchy we have now.

                    • Jokerman

                      where do i sign????

                • muzza

                  4 – RBNZ Audit

                  • Colonial Viper

                    5 – Full employment. NB not silly neoliberal theory full employment = 2.5% unemployment. I mean, every NZer who wants a full time job paying at least $15/hr gets such a full time job and is held to performing to it.

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.2.2

          One that empowers us and leaves them the choice to participate or rattle around the dustbin of history for a while.

          Where “THEM” includes the major political parties.

          • Bored 1.1.2.2.1

            Its more subtle than “the major political parties” being in the dustbin of history. It is the whole thinking and tautology, the entire mindset that has become redundant….yet “we” still slavishly adhere.

    • vto 1.2

      Here’s a model mr bored. Ban usury. All it does is sap the life out of everything. In fact, I don’t think I have ever heard anybody make out a good case for interest on money.

      • Lanthanide 1.2.1

        “In fact, I don’t think I have ever heard anybody make out a good case for interest on money.”
        All you have to do is look at the growth of the modern economy, all of which has only been possible through borrowing capital. Borrowing has a ‘cost’, and the ‘cost’ is paid by money, which is charged as interest.

        • Bored 1.2.1.1

          I’m with VTO: I fully understand money has a cost but usury was banned by the Church as a cardinal sin for a millenium in the West prior to this. Money was loaned with obligations (that’s a subtle but significant difference). Just think, in 750AD I give you 50 shekels hard silver….cant exactly fractionally bank a hard silver shekel. The end result today is that we have enabled with debt interest the creation of money out of thin air and in the process grown ourselves to the edge of an abyss…very clever but it has to stop and that’s what the planet is telling us.

        • thatguynz 1.2.1.2

          Perhaps Lanth but the only way that the model has any sustainability is for the interest to be created at the same time as the principal.  Otherwise what is being initiated is a cycle of perpetual tail chasing where growth is required.  As soon as growth slows down or stops, the house of cards collapses.

        • vto 1.2.1.3

          But Lanthanide, you didn’t answer the question or make out a good case for interest on money. Fractional reserve banking is what has been responsible for the growth, which is different from straight up borrowing. And that ponzi scheme is now at its end point.

          Further, you didn’t say anything about why interest cost is good, you just said interest is the cost.

          Others have it right. Interest on printed money drains the lifeblood out of people and concentrates it in the hands of the lenders. This is simple mathematics.

          The western money system is the problem, as it was always going to be. Unfortunately I suspect it will take massive upheaval to change it.

          • BM 1.2.1.3.1

            Why would I lend you 500,000 dollars?
            What’s in it for me, if I can’t charge you interest.

            • Colonial Viper 1.2.1.3.1.1

              There’s nothing in it for you directly, financially. Plenty in terms off community advantages and networking for you (although of course that means nothing to someone like you).

              Zero interest credit and money creation would become a primary function of the Sovereign once again.

              • BM

                How much have you lent people?
                You seem to have lots of cash or so you say, I assume you have lent to many individuals and start up businesses.
                Hows that working out for you?

                • muzza

                  Nationalize the banks pretty much makes your request moot BM!

                  No need for profit at that point, and then we can go about lending into areas which are beneficial to NZ.

                  Infrastructure, Eduction, Health, and so on

                  Getting it yet!

                  EDIT – I currently have a heap of cash out with people (no strings attached), and it feels great to be able to help them out. One day I may not be able to help people financially, (I only have a little anyway) but today I can, so I do. And the shoulder to cry on, and ear for listening, or some unbias, honest advise is always on offer, even if/when the money can’t be.

                  Maybe try it sometime!

                  • BM

                    So the taxpayer takes all the risk?
                    How do we lend out money if we’re not making a surplus?

                    • muzza

                      Taxpayer are carrying all the risk by borrowing for abroad anyway, and are on the hook for bailout of private institutions – South Canterbury Finance for example.

                      Why would you think it to be any riskier for the NZ government (taxpayer) to be funding our countries needs?

                      Saying we need a surplus to provide funds is like saying a private bank needs a profit to loan money…Its simply not true, a sovereign government can produce all the interest free funds it requires, with some help from the tax system to ensure that any over supply is mopped up, to keep inflation in check!

                      What we would require is leaders with vision, and integrity who cared about all people in NZ!

                    • Colonial Viper

                      How do we lend out money if we’re not making a surplus?

                      The Reserve Bank issues the money by crediting KiwiBank’s operating account.

                      KiwiBank then takes over most of the lending activity in the country, pushing the Australian retail banks to drop their margins and their profits, or get out of the game.

                      So the taxpayer takes all the risk?

                      And the taxpayer gets all the rewards. It’s how true capitalism works, mate.

                    • BM

                      I guess the issue I see is that NZ is rather reliant on imports and trade to survive and unfortunately we do seem to be in the we need them more than then they need us camp.

                      Booting out the banks rather sends a hostile message to the trading community and I’m guessing there would be rather serious ramifications for doing that, like our currency dropping in value rather severely and probably
                      less trading opportunities.
                      As you know that could have rather serious flow on effects.

                      Personally though, I think Muldoon had the right idea with the think big projects keeping services in house is how all major businesses operate.
                      Less you sub out the more money you make.

                    • mike e

                      Print more BM just like all the major trading blocks duh!
                      Thats why our Dollar is seriously over valued it should be around the 63 cent mark against the US.
                      But because we are one of the few countries that play the game straight we get ripped off by currency traders knowing we are not go to do anything while they abandon the de valuers and take safe haven in our silly policy of denial!

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Booting out the banks rather sends a hostile message to the trading community and I’m guessing there would be rather serious ramifications for doing that, like our currency dropping in value rather severely and probably
                      less trading opportunities.

                      1) You wouldn’t boot out the banks – they would simply need to become more competitive in the deals that they give Kiwi consumers and Kiwi businesses, or they will be squeezed out of the market place. This is real competitive capitalism.

                      2) The currency dropping is something that both our farmers and our manufactured exporters would love. I don’t see a problem at all with a Kiwi dollar valued 20% less around the US$0.65 mark.

                    • Foreign Waka

                      Why lend at all?

            • mike e 1.2.1.3.1.2

              BM In reality if you were at Merrill Lynch when Shonkey was their you would only need 13,000 dollars to lend $500,000 out!
              Senate investigators found that loans from ML were geared at 38 to 1

            • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.3.1.3

              Why would I want to borrow from you when I can borrow from the government at 0% interest?

          • Lanthanide 1.2.1.3.2

            “Fractional reserve banking is what has been responsible for the growth, which is different from straight up borrowing. And that ponzi scheme is now at its end point.”

            Lending and charging interest has been around for longer than fractional reserve banking. Certainly things were a lot different in 1600-1800 than they are now.

            “Further, you didn’t say anything about why interest cost is good, you just said interest is the cost.”

            People wouldn’t lend capital if there wasn’t anything in it for them. The way to compensate someone for borrowing their capital is to pay them interest. That’s why “interest cost is good”, because without it there wouldn’t be lending. If there wasn’t lending, the people with the capital would jealously keep it for themselves, leading to much less distribution of wealth.

            “Others have it right. Interest on printed money drains the lifeblood out of people and concentrates it in the hands of the lenders. This is simple mathematics.”

            Because no one has ever borrowed money from a bank, built a successful business and become wealthy from doing so?

            “The western money system is the problem, as it was always going to be. Unfortunately I suspect it will take massive upheaval to change it.”

            I don’t agree that the “western money system is the problem”, but I would agree that “the modern western money system is the problem”.

            • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.3.2.1

              People wouldn’t lend capital if there wasn’t anything in it for them.

              It doesn’t need to be lent out.

              If there wasn’t lending, the people with the capital would jealously keep it for themselves, leading to much less distribution of wealth.

              Wrong. It just means that some people would end up with far too much money and nothing to spend it on.

              Because no one has ever borrowed money from a bank, built a successful business and become wealthy from doing so?

              Did you notice the inequality and the poverty?

              You, like many, have failed to understand what the economy is for. It’s not to enrich a few people.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.4

          Government prints the money with no interest, spends that money into the economy to produce things (factories, roads, etc), taxes are then used to balance that spending.

          The point with this circle is that there is no need for interest at all and it doesn’t fall down due to the private banks creating more and more money with interest that cannot be repaid. Amazingly enough, it also means that international trade can be minimised and that the economy can become sustainable neither of which can be done with an usurious economy.

          • Colonial Viper 1.2.1.4.1

            And of course, the Government doesn’t even need to physically print the money required. It simply gets the Reserve Bank to electronically credit Kiwi Bank’s general operating account with it.

      • mike e 1.2.2

        an easy way to ban interest would be for all of us to become muslim

    • Jenny 1.3

      WThe “Right” always ask “Where is the money coming from?” The “Left” assume the money merely needs redistribution. Meanwhile a plague afflicts both houses, one of myopia and lack of prescience.

      Bored

      Yes Bored. But let a war break out – and “both houses” will find no end of money to prosecute it.

      The depression was still on, populations around the world right up until the outbreak of hostilitities were being told “there is no money”. War broke out, and magically money was not an issue. $billions and $trillions of dollars were spent on mass slaughter, massive bodies of armed men were paid to be kept in the field for years producing nothing but destruction. Factories around the world mobilised to churn out machinery for war in massive amounts that creating nothing worthwhile at all.

      Genunine productive capacity, (ie food, clothes, housing, transport) not related to the war effort was severely scaled back, or completely turned off.

      Where did all this money come from?

      Globally hardly any new productive capital was being created and any new wealth that was created, was also thrown into the war effort to be deliberately destroyed?

      Yet there was no shortage of funding?

      The war didn’t stop because anyone ran out of money to pay for it.

      One side had to physically overpower and occupy the other.

      Ask yourself this: How much has been spent by governments, both left and right in our completely pointless military engagement in Afghanistan?

      Yet, No money to address poverty, or joblessness?

      Bullshit.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.3.1

        +1

        • Jenny 1.3.1.1

          The unreality of money.

          It is a mantra that is drummed into us by politicians and newsreaders, we all know the words, we accept it, though it makes us feel uneasy and insecure.

          “There is not enough money” for schools, and hospitals, and welfare, and pensions, and environmental protection, and climate change mitigation, etc, etc, etc.

          But when there is a war, money is a bottomless bucket

          How can this be?

          To explain how it works

          War is not the only thing that has been given a bottomless bucket of money.

          The Banskters and Financiers have also cottoned onto the idea of an endless supply of money, directing huge amounts of fictional money to themselves to support lifestyles and incomes not even dreamed of by the Pharaohs.

          http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=8820

          —the size of the derivatives market is something like 20 times the value of all products produced on the planet.

          I suppose this use of ‘money’ while not immediately as deadly and destructive as war also crushes down and sacrifices investment in the real productive wealth of nations ie real things like food, clothing, housing, transport.

          It is when the banskters and the financiers use the power and influence this fictional money gives them to manipulate governments to bail them out with real funds that makes much less wealth available for hospitals and pensions or even maintaining basic public services.

      • muzza 1.3.2

        Well said Jenny.

        Those at the controls genuinely do not care, and our government actions, and lack of them, show that what we call democracy, is little more than puppet theatre, where those we get to vote for are chosen for us, and answer to people who we do not get to see much of, Royal visits etc aside!

        I suppose this use of ‘money’ while not immediately as deadly and destructive as war also crushes down and sacrifices investment in the real productive wealth of nations ie real things like food, clothing, housing, transport.

        Indeed, and as more money is taken out of the system, (which is where the inequality comes from), the effects will become more devastating than any physical war ever was. The wars are simply the distraction to deflect attention away from the biggest threat to their lives, MONEY!

  2. If anyone is interested, Foxnews if running a poll about whether teenagers should have access to birth control. At the moment “No — This is a parent’s responsibility, not a ‘nanny state’s.’” is running at about 84%. was 93%
    Seems there is an internet campaign to drive the no vote down.
    http://polldaddy.com/poll/6557149/

  3. Ed 3

    I watched the parliamentary debate on the Marriage equality bill, and was appalled by the contribution by Hayes. There didn’t seem to be much subsequent comment, but I was pleased to come across this:
    http://www.nzfarmersweekly.co.nz/article/9529.html

    • tc 3.1

      Hayes is an odious relic, the effective tactic the hollowmen pulled off in 2011 was to hide the true nature of most of the MP’s from their electorates by keeping them well feed on the gravy train with firm orders to say and do nothing outside the neo liberal book of soundbites

      • ianmac 3.1.1

        Hayes is perhaps a closet Gay or maybe he had a warped childhood. He is welcome to his beliefs except not as an MP. Perhaps Hayes and Banks could get together and have a chummy pow wow.

        • Ed 3.1.1.1

          I understand that some very conservative types found the bill disturbing – but Hayes lack of comprehension was amazing. That I can put up with – as someone said, parliament is meant to be representative of our population, and his views may well be shared by up to 1% of the population. The concerning aspect is however that he was arrogant enough to claim that his personal views were representative of those in his electorate. Clearly he had not spoken to many about his views, but had what is becoming a prevalent National electorate MPs that having been elected all his opinions must be shared by his electorate. Asset sales, anyone?

          • prism 3.1.1.1.1

            Ed 3 1 1 1
            Quoting the views of your electorate is a regular appeal to authority used by pollies. There are so many things that could be considered for new policy, but not implemented as at present apparently because of anonymous requests to pollies that may consist of an idea from two or three Party seers over a glass of wine.

            How sick I am of pollies saying that people – my constituents – concerned parents are wanting this or that and that the polly considers their wishes must be fulfilled. We heard that a lot connected with the move to National Standards, ie ‘parents have told me they want regular and easy reports’. So of course we must spend millions of dollars on this thin justification.

  4. Huginn 4

    Someone in the GCSB has been caught spying on a New Zealand resident – which is illegal. The presumption is that they were passing information on to a foreign power. Which is espionage.

    The Police Service and Crown Law are seriously compromised in this.

    It’s a crisis . . .

    . . . but this is all about Key covering his arse: – he’s subtle, nuanced and completely self-obsessed

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/video.cfm?c_id=1&gal_objectid=10836311&gallery_id=128095

  5. tracey 5

    I understand beneficiaries whose children dont attend school will have their benefits cut. Presumably this is because of the high value we place on schooling?

    I know of families where both parents work and occassionally their shifts coincide making it impossible to have a parent at home to look after the pre schooler.

    An older child stays off school to babysit.

    I was in fiji for over a week stayibg at a high end hotel. I deliberately go during aussie and nz school term to avoid the noise of lots of children.

    No such luck. It seems white middle class oz and nz deem it appropriate to remove their children from school for a week to spend seven days in a pool. If school is so important we will dock beneficiarieswhose children miss some school, why not just pass a law making it a crime to knowingly allow your child to miss school? That is, if the reason for docking bennies is REALLY because of the high calue we place on schooling…

    • King Kong 5.1

      Taking your kids out of school for holidays, be it skiing or an international trip is of educational benefit. Exposure to new cultures, geography, geology e.t.c.

      Whilst allowing your kids to miss school in order to play video games, huff glue, burgle the neighbours…not so much

      • vto 5.1.1

        Fuck me you’re an assumptive bastard aren’t you. Brainless goon.

        Holidays for swimming in resort pools or watching mickey mouse and donald duck does zip for education.

        • King Kong 5.1.1.1

          I completely disagree. Whilst a holiday at a Pacific resort might not have the same educational benefit as a Nepalese trek it still teaches the young an important lesson. If you enjoy this lifestyle then when you get back to school make sure you work hard in order to be qualified for a job that will allow you to afford it and not end up like the jealous whinging plebs on the Standard.

          • mike e 5.1.1.1.1

            I suppose going to the Congo to watch primitive primates would be a good lesson in how far humans have developed over the apes and not just the biggest bully on the block can succeed!

          • Uturn 5.1.1.1.2

            “If you enjoy this lifestyle then when you get back to school make sure you work hard in order to be qualified for a job that will allow you to afford it and not end up like the jealous whinging plebs on the Standard.”

            time off school, education suffers.
            time off school spent looking at thing that require more time at school
            when back to school you at deficit of education
            things seen while having time off school now out of reach
            change name to monkey and troll The Standard in frustration

            alternatively,

            time spent looking at thing that need education
            time lost looking at thing easily reclaimed
            if education time so easily reclaimed, no need to work so hard
            teacher very good, system very good
            anyone can get thing no matter the speed of their achievement
            no need to travel since photograph or advert enough to know thing exist.
            travel just element of lifestyle, no educative material

            or maybe,

            child go to hotel in Vanuatu
            parents stoned and drunk
            looks just like at home but sunnier
            child no give a shit either way
            grow up to be small minded
            takes same perspective to all places.

            and then,

            monkey child see banana, no education necessary
            monkey make noise, noise not reclaimed
            monkey do shit,
            no one care.

          • Dr Terry 5.1.1.1.3

            KK. Or end up just like you who is always appearing in these columns. Are you indeed projecting?

            • King Kong 5.1.1.1.3.1

              Funny enough I am writing this from beside the pool at the Sofitel in Denarau so in answer to your question…no.

              • felix

                And yet you can’t think of a single thing you’d rather do with your luxury poolside time than troll the standard.

                What a sad little monkey you are.

          • vto 5.1.1.1.4

            King Kong, your view on this is very illuminating and points to what you see as important in the world.

            A trek across the wilds of Te Urewera would be equally, if not more, educational for a kiwi kid than a trek across the wilds of Nepal. The fact you think otherwise describes you.

            In my experience the most well-rounded and decent people who live good, happy and fulfilling lives tend to be those with their feet on the ground, not constantly up in the air in some wretched 747. And as for being envious of trips to Fiji – you have got to be joking. Talk about boring.

          • McFlock 5.1.1.1.5

            Giving the kids a resort holiday teaches them they need to work for that lifestyle, and gives them an objective to work towards?
                 
            Should we do the same for the currently unemployed? 
                
            Sounds like it would encourage “benefit dependency” to me… 

            EDIT dang, Ed beat me to it…

            • mike e 5.1.1.1.5.1

              Maybe we could set up a charter school in Fiji!
              That would teach the pupils how to run a dictatorship!

          • Foreign Waka 5.1.1.1.6

            Are you for real? And who is going to teach the kids the subjects they WILL NEED to enter University? Are you aware that outside NZ these kids do not stand a chance without a proper education?

            • Populuxe1 5.1.1.1.6.1

              If their parents can afford to take them on so many holidays that it affects their education, I somehow doubt that they will be short of chances.

              • Foreign Waka

                I disagree. The difference in the workforce knowledge over the last 20 years is tremendous. Just spending the parents savings (which they may need themselves) will not do. Besides, knowledge is not just a chip to make money it is obtained to understand the world, to enjoy it and see the depth of it. Decisions are made by people of wealth – if they are dumb too then god help NZ.

                • Populuxe1

                  You assume that they will want to help NZ – I doubt it, they’ll be scions of National-voting rich pricks. They will also have acquired the kind of private school, family, and social connections that unfortunately seem to make university education irrelevant.

        • Populuxe1 5.1.1.2

          Any experience of another country or culture – no matter how slight – is always going to stimulate the minds of children. Turning a blind eye to the epidemic of truancy, not so much.

      • Ed 5.1.2

        It is really hard to understand why beneficiaries don’t get this, isn’t it King Kong. A small trip to even Australia should be able to be afforded by any family, and a quick trip around Europe should be possible at least once between the ages of 10 and 15. After all, an overseas holiday is really only a small amount more expensive than video games or glue . . . “Right”, King Kong?

        • King Kong 5.1.2.1

          I think you may have missed my original point.

        • prism 5.1.2.2

          Ed 5 1 2
          Apart from the p.ss taking in reality beneficiaries have to tell The Department when they are going overseas. Doesn’t matter if they have scraped and saved to just get enough, they would probably be stopped from going because they have some unpaid fine or if they go, have their benefit stopped etc.

          If you are unemployed you are supposed to be looking for work all the time, and that is your work, and you never get a holiday. If super is put off till 67 that means that you are likely to be on UB and the above constraints would apply to you.

          Big Brother doesn’t let you to have a life, whether beneficiary or low wage earner and hates to think of you having enjoyment and pleasure except for that of blotting out with alcohol which is the government’s drug of choice. Govt keeps wages low as possible, and manipulates the economy by undermining NZ business with low tariffs so there aren’t local jobs servicing each other, ie making clothes, shoes in NZ, train parts, car parts, tractors and tractor parts, good honest work making our everyday needs.

          Scrabble in the dust while we despise you is the attitude of today’s pollies.

      • weka 5.1.3

        Whilst allowing your kids to miss school in order to play video games, huff glue, burgle the neighbours…not so much

        I agree about the glue, but burglary and video games are fine skills in the coming age. We just need to teach kids some ethics (eg don’t steal from your neighbours or people who can’t afford it), and how gaming skills can help them. Some education around how not to get caught, how to deal with the law, rights etc would be good too.

        Of course NACT and/or Labour could do something useful about poverty, and then those kids could do something else instead. But if the rest of the country is going to use their poverty for their own benefit (and make sure it doesn’t change), then there is no reason why those kids shouldn’t be learning survival and resiliency skills. Or having fun.

        • King Kong 5.1.3.1

          Of course no one has ever broken the shackles of intergenerational welfare dependancy before so why bother.

          Perhaps we are going wrong with the syllabus for these kids. Maybe instead of English, maths and science we could have punching your wife in the face (for boys), getting knocked up by multiple partners (for girls) and how to set up a drug distribution centre from your state house.

          Real skills for the future.

          • prism 5.1.3.1.1

            King Kong
            Your education has been deficient too, all you have learned is to metaphorically punch people in the face. You view the people around you with tunnel vision. You are an example of the simple education that just teaches subjects not an understanding of how society and the world tends to work.

            You get an A in smugness and also for callousness but will have to do a refresher course on your attitudes and how relevant to reality they are.

          • mike e 5.1.3.1.2

            Well we will bring in some unqualified experts like Dirty old Don brash and he can show how to get away with multiple partners!
            Then KK you would be the Token disadvantaged or disabled pupil!
            We could bring in a few other examples of successful elites like those who ran bridge corp hujlich wealth management etc !

  6. vto 6

    What is with stupid eggheads in control of everything? Can’t they think properly?

    Spring Creek is being mothballed apparently because the price of coal has dropped. Yet Solid Energy is keeping the mine because of its confidence that the price will return in the future and all of the coal under there will be needed.

    So why not spread out the mining over the booms and busts? Mine and store it (at lower cost) during the busts, and mine it and sell both it and the stores in times of boom. That way you keep a quality and stable workforce, you have shitloads of coal ready to sell when the boom times arrive again, and you simply smooth out the currently roughshod way in which the ‘leaders’ operate these things.

    And if that approach does not work then best sell up the mine completely. I know plenty locals who will buy it if it has no value.

    • mike e 6.1

      Storing coal is not that viable once coal is mined it oxidises and looses hydro carbons selling it for less than its worth would be more viable also keeping experienced underground miners on the job to get the mine up and running again will be much more difficult.
      This option they have taken is a short sighted 3 monthly corporate reporting mode of operating a business Dumb by Dumb Government ie Tony Ryall and shonkey!
      If we took the same approach to farming it would destroy our agriculture sector!
      Bean brained bean counters again running a yoyo economy like the 1990′s

      • Grumpy 6.1.1

        The Chinese are taking West Coast coal and dumping it at sea to stockpile. It keeps indefinately that way.

        You might think they have manipulated the coal price to buy more for less.

        • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1

          Centrally planned economies cannot strategically forward plan like that. Really, they can’t. At all.

  7. vto 7

    And tell me – how can anyone trust the government and authorities now. Credibility and trust has evaporated. Evidence…

    1. GCBS blatantly breach the law and spy on locals, apparently at the behest of the US and its stormtroopers.

    2. NZ Police invade locals houses on instruction of the USA’s FBI, who also then proceed to break our laws and remove evidence. Blatant breach.

    3. Ecan elections get canned and postponed. Exactly like Bananarama in Fiji and the Communist Party of China.

    4. An entire city’s CBD gets taken away from its owners.

    5. An entire city’s schooling gets upheaved at the stroke of a pen.

    6. US Sec of Defence comes over and thanks us for fighting their wars. Then says they want to station their stormtroopers here.

    We should be very afraid. I think the time of goodness and innocence has completely passed NZ by. Those in power are corrupt and cannot be trusted. On top of that, govt departments such as Police and GSCB simply steam roll over laws to achieve their ends (the long held suspicioun now confirmed) such is the power they have.

    • tc 7.1

      That lack of trust is all part of the strategy as they are gambling the brush tars both sides of the house with the old ‘ bloody pollies they’re all the same, oh he looks a nice man and says such nice things my word yes I do want a brighter future etc…’

      The opposition has to smash this govt rhetoric and chart a clear course away from the middle muddle as I believe people are seeing planet key for what is really is finally.

    • Bored 7.2

      When an empire is in crisis history notes that a couple of things occur that indicate imperial reach is getting tenuous. First the empire insists the imperial model is fine: the vassal ruling classes are prone to demonstrations of and aping of their own overlords power over the local citizenry.
      Second the imperial power promises to back up their perceived strength by offers of garrisons (unlikely to be delivered due to overstretch). Sounds familiar?

    • Dr Terry 7.3

      The terrible truth is that nearly half of our voters do trust this Government (and authorities).

      • Colonial Viper 7.3.1

        yeah I have plenty of good, sensible friends, who still think National are doing an OK (albeit not fantastic) job…particularly since they can’t see any real alternatives on the horizon.

        PS and of course, our General Election voters are currently just 74% of the population.

    • prism 7.4

      NZ Police are announced as having provided wrong information in a sensitive case, to our secret squirrels thus making us look more like that banana republic that fatcats used to talk about before we became one, but without our favourite food, bananas. (Stats show us as biggest banana eaters in world.) Unreliable stat – but then so much of what we hear and see quoted each day is unreliable and mere opinion, that’s the NZ way today.

  8. uke 8

    John Key is sometimes described in the MSM as a “businessman”. Being a “businessman” gives Key the right credentials for managing the NZ economy during a world financial crisis.
     
    But in what sense has John Key actually been a businessman? Does any of his previous employment actually qualify for this description?

    • felix 8.1

      He owns shares in plenty of businesses but has never run one. And looking at the way he conducts himself in negotiations – the water rights issue being a good recent example, and there are others – he’d never be able to.

    • vto 8.2

      He is absolutely not a businessman.

      He has been employed to be a money trader, no more no less. He has since taken his gains and invested.

      Money trader and investor.

      John Key has, unless he is keeping it secret, never ever conceived an idea, designed it for reality, built it, sold it to actual people and had it used by the community for a useful purpose for a goodly period of time.

      John Key is a businessman as much as Helen Clark was.

    • BLiP 8.3

      .

      . . . and, for ten internets, name one business which John Key has worked for and which is still in operation?

    • Bored 8.4

      John Key IS a businessman BUT of the modern corporate mode. These are probably better described as courtiers and functionaries within organisations to which they usually have no ownership (or perhaps only that ascribed by “options” which are tradable remunerative obligations). Key in his “business” role ran a forex floor, a role where you risk your employment (but not your own money). It is akin to being a professional gambler of other peoples money.

      • blue leopard 8.4.1

        @ Bored

        …yeah, and wouldn’t it be good if more NZers cottoned onto this sad fact… 
:(

    • Draco T Bastard 8.5

      Well, the time line does suggest that he helped trash the NZ economy back in 1987 by manipulating the exchange rate.

    • uke 8.6

      Thanks for that everybody. I was familiar with his wikipedia resume, just wanted to check.
       
      “Businessman” is probably a fair description according to the Oxford English Dictionary definition: “a man or woman engaged in trade or commerce, esp. at a senior level”.
       
      However, he doesn’t appear to have actually started or owned his own business operation. More a senior cog in some large banking & trading firms. Hence he could not accurately be described as an “entrepeneur”.

  9. Jokerman 9

    In the middle of work
    we start longing fiercely for wild greenery,
    for the Wilderness itself, penetrated only
    by the thin civilisation of telephone wires.

    The moon of leisure circles the planet Work
    with it’s mass and weight.-That’s how they want it.
    When are on the way home the ground pricks up it’s ears.
    The underground listens to us via the grass-blades.-

    -

    One Sunday I walk past an unpainted new building
    standing before a grey wet surface.
    It is half finished. The wood has the same light colour
    as the skin on someone bathing.

    Outside the lamps the September night is totally dark.
    When the eyes adjust, there is faint light
    over the ground where large snails glide out
    and the mushrooms are as numerous as the stars.

    -Tomas Transtromer

    All our love and thoughts to the West Coast community during this unsettling time of change.

  10. captain hook 10

    blank cheque!

  11. freedom 11

    http://rt.com/news/nz-intelligence-investigation-dotcom-810/

    spot the oopsie by RT.
    (Even though there are far bigger issues, i bet that stings a little)

  12. ianmac 12

    Anyone notice one Bradley Ambrose last night on Campbell Live as the cameraman for the project to get up close to an active volcano. The interview with him showed him to appear to a good adventurous nice bloke and not some devious demon. Surprised?

  13. Del Piero 13

    Thought there might be a bit more angst here about the Solid Energy lay-offs. Are people not bothered because it’s coal?

  14. Dv 14

    From DomPost
    National standards results could have a role in assessing the performance of teachers, Education Minister Hekia Parata says.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/wellington-schools/7724200/Standards-may-aid-rating-of-teachers

    Well that didn’t take long.

    • ianmac 14.1

      Yes Dv and further:

      Ms Parata said the standards were aimed at raising “learner achievement” but also “raising teacher capability in the classroom”.

      “Performance pay has been raised. I’m keen to see it located in a context of overall quality management in schools, not something as a silver bullet because it just isn’t.”

      National standards could help schools understand who they needed to employ and to help set targets for teachers.

      The Minister warned some time ago that she had further plans for Education and here she comes.

      • Dv 14.1.1

        Parata wouldn’t know quality management if it hit her in the face.

        • Tiger Mountain 14.1.1.1

          “performance pay by stealth” as teacher unions put it near the start of the Nat.Standards debacle.
          I’m happy to publicly stand with teachers in my area for any actions etc. to fight this.

    • kiwi_prometheus 14.2

      Looking back most of my teachers were doing their best with the kids, some better that others, but they all seemed to have a genuine interest in teaching.

      Discipline was more of a problem for some teachers struggling to control a class of 30 teenage boys, some with real attitudes.

      Teachers need more support.

      A lot of it has to do with parenting and a teacher can’t control that right? If parents can’t raise one or two kids competently, how is a teacher suppose to deal with that human car wreck, while juggling a class of 20 -30 rowdy teenagers?

      • Dv 14.2.1

        well said KP

      • prism 14.2.2

        k p
        The country as a whole doesn’t understand that people shape the life of the country, not the other way round. So we don’t help parents to do a good job, don’t hold up guidelines and set behavioural standards and provide amenities that nurture happy families.

        But we do allow supermarkets to sell alcohol. The govts worry about party pills but not the late times that parties finish, when deaths, attacks and injuries most occur. Easy peasy, encourage people to continue to excess then blame them for being tempted.

        The country wants parents to leave their kids home sick and go to work in some less important job than parenting but which is ‘paid’. And a country where money counts for more than people, and the hard job for parents bringing up children with good attitudes is disdained, then there are many parents and children who don’t get any good, just attitude.

        • Draco T Bastard 14.2.2.1

          The country wants parents to leave their kids home sick and go to work in some less important job than parenting but which is ‘paid’.

          IMO, Not so much the country as the capitalists. They want as many people as possible working for them so that they become richer and have more power.

    • lostinsuburbia 14.3

      What about international or intergenerational standards for Ministers to see if they really make the grade to lead….

  15. Janice 15

    So Key wasn’t to blame he was in the USA watching his son play softball. Bill English signed off on the surveillance and forgot to tell him. Talk about dissing your mates.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10836388

    • Tiger Mountain 15.1

      believe this you believe anything, Blinglish apparently takes the fall for ShonKey, but…

    • Dv 15.2

      English signed for the pm AND he didn’t tell him!!!

      Especially about the indemnity as that is a fiscal budget issue that could stuff the surplus target.

      Really odd.

    • Clashman 15.3

      Surely the surveillance must have been carried out prior to the raid in January, whats the deal with signing it off in August. Retrospective approval?

    • mike e 15.4

      Nactional seem to be suffering from collective amnesia as usual!
      Dementia ,Alzheimer’s!
      Or just dishonesty and lies?

    • blue leopard 15.5

      Ha!

      “Labour leader David Shearer said it was incredible that the GCSB had not done its own checks on Dotcom’s residency. “It’s called the ‘intelligence’ agency.””

      Aw, yeah, well, about that, um we a bit short of intelly..intulli…intelligints around here, give us a break, we can’t even find a person with intelligible elocution for our PM (…but that don’t matter too much, he speaks a pile of fiction anyway)

    • deuto 16.1

      MUSt watching today – also like the fact that Grant Robertson still has a question on the John Banks saga. IMO Grant has scored much better hits on that issue than Shearer.

      • ScottGN 16.1.1

        Grant Robertson’s questions to Key were probably the best asked in The House today. He basically managed to get Key to admit he’d read the Police Report into Bank’s campaign donations which he’s said he has no knowledge of.

  16. Rose 17

    With every unsympathetic response John Key makes towards new job losses, he is putting another nail in National’s coffin. I predict an embarrassingly low vote for National at the next election and years in oblivion for them trying to regroup.

  17. captain hook 19

    I think the country knew that we need to make sacrifices but the stupid way national has gone about it defies belief.

  18. ianmac 20

    Mr Banks signed a document without “knowing” its contents.Not accountable.

    Mr English signed a document without “knowing” its contents. Not accountable.

    OK everyone?

  19. ianmac 21

    And Campbell Live 7pm, claims that they will have some exclusive information regarding Bill English and the GCSB.

    • felix 21.1

      OK just watched that. What was the new info?

      • karol 21.1.1

        I don’t really know, felix. But it’s meant to be in the content of English’s document/letter.

        • Anne 21.1.1.1

          Yeah well, I took it to be that scrappy piece of paper we saw which had Bill English’s signature on it. Proof that he had signed whatever he signed as John Key said he did.

          • ianmac 21.1.1.1.1

            Not sure either. Perhaps the point was that it is incredible that so many people knew about Dotcom the person and the impending raid/arrest and so many others knew about the stuff up over surveillance including the Deputy, yet the Head man knew nothing. Never heard of Kim Dotcom, nor the involvement of USA in activities in NZ. Wot????
            Campbell may have been underlining this absence. I thought that segment stopped suddenly??? There may be more to be exposed. (Plus Question time was very subdued today and finished sooner than usual by about 15 minutes.) Huh?

            • mac1 21.1.1.1.1.1

              I think you’re right, ianmac. Campbell seemed to say that all these people knew, but no-one told Key. Incredible is the word, used with its rightful meaning.

            • karol 21.1.1.1.1.2

              Yes, in Question time today, Peters pulled his punches. He asked a primary and a secondary or 2. I, and the Speaker, were expecting him to come in with another secondary – go for the punch line, I thought. But he just sat down.

              http://www.parliament.nz/en-NZ/PB/Business/QOA/1/b/f/50HansQ_20120925_00000003-3-Government-Communications-Security-Bureau.htm

              Key also issued a warning to the press today, as shown on TV3 news tonight. He said it very carefully:

              http://www.3news.co.nz/Too-soon-for-blame-over-Dotcom-spying-says-Key/tabid/1607/articleID/270535/Default.aspx

              But Prime Minister John Key says it’s too soon to lay blame.

              “I just caution you as a journalist to be careful about inventing things that are great for a Tom Clancy story but not necessarily accurate in New Zealand,” says Mr Key.

            • Populuxe1 21.1.1.1.1.3

              I wouldn’t be at all surprised if GCSB was following up a request direct from Washington and it may have bypassed Wellington entirely – we’ve seen similar things whereby our government seems to have no idea what our troops on detachment to the US in Afghanistan are doing.

              • Colonial Viper

                I wouldn’t be at all surprised if GCSB was following up a request direct from Washington and it may have bypassed Wellington entirely

                And that is a scenario all too awful to even consider. Hail our colonial masters.

                • Jenny

                  It is hard to know if you are being serious or ironic CV.

                  I had thought you were a big supporter of US imperialism. Aren’t you a defender of the current Syrian regime, a place of CIA “Special Rendition” and torture generally?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Oh yes, you’re always good friends of the US right up until the time you aren’t. Saddam Hussein, and many others, found that out the hard way.

                  • Jenny

                    In trying to extradite Kim Dotcom, subverting our secret security oganisations is the least of their crimes.

                    Just as the US authorities are doing everything in their power to extradite “alleged” internet pirate, Dotcom back to the US. The US authorities are doing every thing in their power to oppose the extradition of “convicted US human rights violators” back to Italy.

                    23 CIA agents convicted of civil rights violations by Italian courts and for violating Italian sovereignty in illegally abducting a Moslem cleric from Italian territory to a territory where torture is legal, in the notorious CIA practice known as “extraordinary rendition”. Had their case for extradition vigorously opposed by lawyers working for the US authorities.

                    Americans oppose extradition of convicted felons.

                    Italy’s highest courts ruled that the extradition orders were legal.

                    This sentence proves that Italy is a state still under the rule of law. Today Italy’s top criminal court gave Abou Omar back his dignity.

                    In the same old criminal manner the US is expected to illegally defy the legal ruling of the Italian courts. But they expect us to honour their demands for the extradition of Dotcom without due process?

                    Will NZ courts have the courage to legally defy the US authorities, in giving Kim Dotcom “back his dignity” with a fair hearing?

                    Will our courts demand that the US authorities at the very least provide their evidence against Kim Dotcom. Or will he be delivered into the US gulag without a fair hearing, where like Bradly Manning, and many others, he could be held for years in prison without trial?

                    http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/technology/7706772/Dotcom-in-court-for-documents-appeal

                    The signs are not good.

                    The government’s lawyer, John Pike, said the District Court and High Court do not have the power to order evidence to be disclosed in the extradition process being used. If the record of the case was thought it inadequate the process was for the judge at the extradition hearing to invite the government to add to the record.

                    But Paul Davison, QC, acting for Dotcom, said the extradition hearing – currently due to be heard next March – was the same as committing someone for trial. The government had to show evidence that, on the face of it, Dotcom and the others had a case to answer.

                    Dotcom would have “both his hands tied behind his back” if he had to go through the extradition hearing without knowing the evidence being used to back up the allegations.

                    As the Italian case shows, the US knows a lot about extraditing people with ‘their hands tied behind their backs’. In fact it is their preferred method of conducting cross border ‘justice’.

  20. Draco T Bastard 22

    Clarke and Dawe on the GCF.

  21. muzza 23

    The presumably numbers-driven educational reformers are highly selective when it comes to which numbers they take seriously. For years, many have touted charter schools (which usually are not unionized) as the preferred alternative to (unionized) public schools

    Teaching, at least in major cities, is also a profession in which minorities are heavily represented; when reformers argue that we need to take down teachers unions to give more opportunity to minority youth, the argument veers perilously close to “We need to destroy the black middle class in order to save it.”

    As both policy and politics, the demonization of teachers unions is a dead end for improving American education. Working with, not against, teachers is the more sensible way to better our schools.,

    We can see what charter schools is really about then!

    Piece at a time they are taking away not only your future, but your childs too…

    • ianmac 23.1

      Well spotted muzza. Destroying the NZEI may be the underlying purpose here too? Funny thing is that the NZEI Branches often finds it hard to get a quorum to meetings. The only time teachers respond is when the welfare of kids is threatened or maybe teacher rights are being stripped. But everytime the current Minister speaks I listen for those underlying hints of teacher destruction.

      • muzza 23.1.1

        Indeed ianmac, that just gotta break those unions, anyway they can, thats what its about…

        PoAL, etc all the same thing, and what happens if the unions are done, TPPA comes in being, and pesky issues such as minimum wages are seen as “liabilities”..

        Yeah, the global mondel is slavery, and NZ is firlmy in the radar, for those “lucky” enough to have a job.

        The current mob of government, are beyond dangerous, and it begs the question…

        “Are they actually Kiwis, or even human beings”?

  22. prism 24

    The Reith Lecture on radionz tonight was about education in uk.
    9:06 The Tuesday Feature: The Reith Lectures: The Rule of Law & its Enemies (F, RNZ)
    Comes under Window on the World. You have to listen to BBC and search online for Reith and possibly Neil Ferguson to hear it. Quite feisty discussion.

  23. Draco T Bastard 25

    And yet another video about the way banks create money.

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