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Open mike 27/08/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 27th, 2012 - 81 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…

81 comments on “Open mike 27/08/2012”

  1. Tony P 1

    Parata addresses principals in Nelson and shows her ignorance. (Shanghai is not a country!)

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/nelson-mail/news/7547388/Education-shouldn-t-stand-still-Parata

    Kelvin Smythe’s response.

    http://www.networkonnet.co.nz/index.php?section=latest&id=402

    • Dv 1.1

      Kelvin, did the Principals at the meeting ask or challenge any of the statements made by Parata?

    • Ben 1.2

      That is a dreadfully written “rebuttal.”

      • Ianmac from Vietnam 1.2.1

        Wonder what you mean Ben? Is there something that Kelvin wrote that you disagree with? Kelvin always writes with passion but also with accuracy. Fault his facts if you can.

    • Ianmac from Vietnam 1.3

      Read it all Tony. Thanks. And what a danger to our kids Parata is! And Kelvin takes each lie and each misrepresentation and dissects them with accuracy and with passion.
      I do hope clever folk like Mr Robbins will pick up on the Parata Nelson Speech Disaster and the Opposition Question Masters will challenge her untruths and mischief in Parliament. She must be even worse for Education than past Mister Merv WELLINGTON???

  2. Nick 2

    Less than 20 people turn up to United Future’s AGM.

    ’nuff said.

    • felix 2.1

      And some of them don’t even necessarily vote UF…

    • lprent 2.2

      I saw that and chortled… More people routinely turn up at Auckland isthmus LEC’s. In fact the last branch AGM I went to would have had 15.

    • Mr Burns 2.3

      You mean the United Future Liberal Democrat Gun Shootin’ Tootin’ Christian Conservative Fancy Coiffure party’s AGM?

      • lprent 2.3.1

        Fancy Coiffure

        Mr Burns, with all of your money, how come you never got a hairpiece like that?

        • Mr Burns 2.3.1.1

          Ha ha
           
          I was having far too much fun buying up distressed assets in the third world, things like hospitals and orphanages. It is amazing what savings could be made when you cut back on non essentials like food and medicine.

    • Lanthanide 2.4

      They interviewed Pete George on the radio. Apparently he was one of the 20 people – a true believer.

      Interesting that they’re getting the comments from the 11th ranked MP on their party list. I guess at the next election, we could see PG in the top 5-6, low enough to get into parliament should they meet the 4/5% threshold (assuming coat-tailing is abolished).

      Peter Dunne said that the number of times he hears people agree with his party and what they’re doing, “if just 10% of them voted we’d dominate parliament”. Let’s be very generous and say 50% of the people say that – if 10% of them voted for UF they’d only just scrape in on the party vote, and hardly have enough MPs to “dominate parliament”.

      • felix 2.4.1

        1996: 0.88%
        1999: 0.54%
        2002: 6.70%
        2005: 2.70%
        2008: 0.90%
        2011: 0.60%

        Either they’re a sub-one percent party who had an uncharacteristic bump 10 years ago and then sunk back to their natural level of support, or they’re following a weirdly lumpy cycle and they’re on track for another big bump in 2014 :)

        • Pete 2.4.1.1

          According to Morning Report, they’re thinking of rebranding themselves as the Liberal Democrats. Between them and the Conservatives (and Labour, I guess), they’re importing name recognition from the UK for some reason.

          • felix 2.4.1.1.1

            Crikey. If their representatives on this site are anything to go by they’re not too fond of either liberalism or democracy. “Racist One-Party-Statists” would be more appropriate.

        • Lanthanide 2.4.1.2

          The obvious answer is 2002 was a freak year:
          – Lowest turnout for National
          – Labour clearly going to win the election, so some people started looking for alternatives
          – Worm

        • Rosie 2.4.1.3

          Well, One of those UFO’ers said on RNZ this morning that they reckon they need $500K for their campaigning for 2014 so I guess they are expecting a real big ol’ bump as a return. Maybe they want to go hell for leather with guns blazing rather than fade away with a few last dying gasps.

        • Tim G 2.4.1.4

          Don’t talk like that. You’ll only encourage PG!

  3. Pete 3

    Something is very wrong with a country where a child born this minute has a 1 in 5 chance of being born into poverty, while half of those with a fortune of over $50 million don’t pay the top tax rate.

    • Mr Burns 3.1

      Why is everyone so surprised?

      How do you think the very wealthy amassed their fortunes? By being good citizens? By looking after their neighbor and making sure that they also had enough? By not spending every waking minute plotting and scheming and planning to amass even more wealth? By paying their fair due?

      • Pete 3.1.1

        Oh, I’m not surprised that there are millionaires, I’m outraged that we don’t have a system where they are compelled to pay their fair share.

        • Drakula 3.1.1.1

          Or a system where these predators are given free accommodation on a distant archipelago in the middle of the Pacific.

  4. just saying 4

    The site is behaving a little oddly for me today.
    I keep mysteriously ending up in pages from months ago. The comments side-bar keeps turning entirely pink, and then back again.

    No biggie, just mentioning on the slim offchance that it’s important for you to know, lprent.

    • Carol 4.1

      My only difficulty this morning is that the links on the comments on the top right side of the screen don’t work. I think the number at then end of the comment is missing eg:

      http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-27082012/#comment-

    • prism 4.2

      Lynn said he was working with site effects yesterday. I wondered the effects would be like an aurora. That seems to be the case, and you have pink today. Tomorrow it might be green – this would be a nice feature, the rainbow blog! What about it lprent? I imagine the answer. Grump grump I’m already flat out keeping it running don’t you know. And doing great. I must give you one of my infrequent donations, I should do better.

      • lprent 4.2.1

        *grin*
        If I was unkind and more grumpy than my post-moving back is already making me, I’d plug in an override CSS that said things like

        body
        {
        background-color: pink;
        }

        and the few other places as well where background-color is used.

        Then put a acknowledgement for your suggestion on the banner. Actually the exact wording should be something like “Colour donated by prism. Donate before it goes lime-green”

        But I’m loving my old apartment that we have moved back into. We polished the concrete, added extra storage, and for the first time in nearly 3 years I’m able to spend time working at home. The last place was good for Lyn’s film but turned out to be a disaster as a work environ’s for me. Something about the cubicle size that I had just killed the creative process dead while I was at home. Now when I’m plugged into the computers at home, I’m in a open space with a high stud and it is a cave…… Perfect.

        So less grumping and more doing is now the target. But I do have to get some bluetooth headphones and an arm for the TV to prevent distractions when Lyn watches that while I am working. The alternative is to put a TV tuner into a PC and then bump the channels out using DLNA.

  5. vto 5

    The people of east Christchurch are being seriously let down.

    Huge huge numbers of them cannot get on with their lives and it is causing a slow gangrene which is spreading. It is real and immediate.

    In my opinion this is due almost entirely to insurance issues. This is easily resolved by the government stepping in to provide a form of state insurance as it did following the 1931 Napier earthquake. Lives and homes would overnight begin to repair.

    The government’s opposition to this is put down to “not wanting to interefere in the free market” etc etc. But this is complete hogwash. The government has interfered in a massive way for the central city property owners and flagged the free market approach. The government has interefered anyway in the free market with its red zone buyouts. The government has interefered, outside Chch, in the “free market” dairy industry by providing money for their needs, in the “free market” NZX by offering them taxpayer businesses to invest in.

    This government interferes in the “free market” all over trhe place all of the time. Yet it wont interfere to assist the people of east Christchurch. If east Chch was northwest Chch there would be an interference, just like there has been for the wealthy central city property owners. They are hypocrites and lowlife scum.

    And the most stupid thing about it is that if a form of state insurance was put in place then the local economies and communities would roar back into life and the Nats would get a huge surge in support.

    A comprehensive outline of the reasons for refusing to help should be provided by Gerry Brownlee.

    We are in a quicksand…

    • Lanthanide 5.1

      If the government stepped in with some sort of insurance where the private sector is not, then by definition the government would be taking on risk that the private sector didn’t want to take on.

      CHCH has already cost the government a lot of money. After the debacle of SCF, the government being on the hook for more billions(?) doesn’t seem like a good idea.

      • prism 5.1.1

        Lanthanide
        You sound like a NACT supporter. Are you being sarcy. Your comment sounds just like the limpid excuses they would put forward. The SCF wasn’t helping Christchurch in general, it was reacting to the local investors and the Timaru NACT supporters cries of anguish as they found that the free market bed springs are hard to sleep on when the mattress gets repossessed.

      • vto 5.1.2

        “If the government stepped in with some sort of insurance where the private sector is not, then by definition the government would be taking on risk that the private sector didn’t want to take on.”

        Yes, that’s right Lanthanide. But I pointed out examples where this government already does exactly that …

        1. Stepping into SCF and bank guarantees – where the private sector was running away from.
        2. Stepping into dairy infrastructure / irrigation – where the private sector doesn’t want to take the risk.
        3. Stepping into the privately owned share market, the NZX, where the private sector keeps failing.
        4. Stepping into the central city rebuild because it doesn’t trust the private sector and free makret to get it right.

        So your argument Lanthanide does not stack up.

        And remember what we are talking about here. We are not talking about private business or other sectors, we are talking about tens of thousands of households and families who are unable to go about their lives because the private sectors is incapable of providing for them at this time. This is exactly one of the main circumstances we have government for.

        If it is good enough to step into the private sectors to help out dairy, private business, SCF and Aussie banks, the privately owned share market, central city property owners, etc then why is it not good enough to step in to help families stuck in the mud? This is a simple question Lanth – and nobody has provided a decent answer. Feel free to try again.

        It is a disgusting failure.

        And re risk and cost – provided the earthquakes have stopped (and Ken Ring says they have – hee hee) then the government with a state insurance will build up a massive client base which has a massive value for subsequent sale when the private market comes back.

        I tell why this government does not help Bexley – because it is not Fendalton.

        • Lanthanide 5.1.2.1

          In general I was supporting you – it’s not really about the government not wanting to intervene in the “free market” as they claim, it’s about them not wanting to take on risk.

          • vto 5.1.2.1.1

            I appreciate that that is the argument Lanthanide but it holds no water for the reasons outlined. It is a fob off riddled with hypocrisy and stinking bullshit. If that is this government’s reason then they are liars as they routinely ignore that reason when it comes to farmers, NZX, banks, SCF, central city, on it goes.

            Brownlee is being grossly dishonest.

            If east Christchurch has to wait another number of years for insurance to come back then east Christchurch will be more of a wasteland than it is now. People and families will have suffered a whole lot more and left. Christchurch, apparently so important to NZ, will be left with a stinking great slum hole and ghetto in its midst as well as a great swathe of its population significantly harmed.

            It is a great injustice. It is also poor foresight and wisdom – but what the fuck would anyone expect from the likes of John Key. The man is so shallow it is a wonder he even has a shadow.

          • prism 5.1.2.1.2

            ‘ it’s about them not wanting to take on risk.’
            I think it’s about the government not wanting to accept the responsibilities of a good, functioning, people-centred government to help the citizens that they govern who are a special case in their needs. And not wanting to listen to the suggestions and ideas those citizens have, and together to seek a way forward that provides the best solution and a cost-effective one as well. The risk can be ameliorated by using good data and professional advice in a co-ordinated way, working alongside the people.

            What they get however is an authoritarian response as represented in our frequently used graphic of Brownlee in Henry VIII? robes, or is it Gengis Khan? One of the despots of fame anyway.

          • Draco T Bastard 5.1.2.1.3

            It’s not about the risk, it’s about who gets the money.

          • Colonial Viper 5.1.2.1.4

            In general I was supporting you – it’s not really about the government not wanting to intervene in the “free market” as they claim, it’s about them not wanting to take on risk.

            Please excuse my french. But its the frakking job of the frakking government to take on frakking risk to help its citizens.

            If our attitude is that government should have the same mission parameters and objectives as the private sector, then we should just outsource the job and fire them all.

      • Fortran 5.1.3

        Lanthanide

        Reinstate State Insurance Company – a good firm – buy it back from the Aussies (IAG Group).
        They bought it from the Poms, who bought it from New Zealanders – who owned it.

        • Colonial Viper 5.1.3.1

          We could have taken over AMI real easy. It was there for the taking. Frakking Tories.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.2

      They’re doing two things in Christchurch:
      1.) Ensuring that the insurance companies don’t have to pay out as much as they should and so keep their profits
      2.) Ensuring that anything that the government does pay for the money goes to their rich mates

      They really couldn’t give a shit about the people except in how much they can fleece them.

  6. prism 6

    The Family Court is in a mess. Reorganisation has thrown out the systems and vulnerable women and children are at risk when protection orders are slowed and it can take six months to get a hearing for an urgent case. Government’s whole idea is to find ways that technology can be used to make the system cheaper and theoretically more efficient. The paper based system is said to be unwieldy and cumbersome. But it worked. It will cost millions to put the new system right and in the meantime and the future probably, people’s lives get meaner and sadder.

    And there is no hope for a change in direction from this government and possibly Labour as well. The poor are undeserving so get less allocation of goods and services, and their petty squabbles and foolish lack of decision making shouldn’t be sorted out at the nation’s cost. No they can’t expect a Rolls Royce system to straighten out their useless lives. (That’s the theme that runs through the two big pollies and some of the smaller ones too, one talks about being sensible, which ends up in the same circle.)

    It reminds me of the ‘Unfortunate Experiment’ where women were left untreated but under observation in the cervical cancer case. There were some required to travel long distances for regular checks, with costs of time, money, family disruption, and anxiety. They weren’t given the chance to opt in or out, and thought they were under ‘real’ treatment, not just being dismissed as laboratory rats. There is a similarity with this government’s behaviour and all right wing people it seems, that the lower classes are lesser people (and in the cervical cancer case most of the women were regarded as such) and don’t deserve the respect and deference that the better off receive.

    • just saying 6.1

      Well said.
      And the poor and disadvantaged are more and more invisible to people who are neither, as life gets progressively harder.

  7. Jackal 7

    National’s lame excuses to sell our assets

    Trying to hold the country to ransom is a sure way to commit political suicide…

    • Olwyn 7.1

      Firstly, the asset sales were to pay debt ( I refuse to say “pay down” or “tranche” of anything). Then they were to pay for infrastructure. When the prices have been beaten down by various challenges they will be to keep their word, while their mates rub their hands with glee. Stuff the rest of NZ.

      Supposing that is right, this is a question I would really like to ask the Labour caucus. In the event of Key’s government leaving a gaping financial hole, and your being told by the real powers that be, after winning the election, that austerity is the only option, how will you reply?

      • vto 7.1.1

        But Owlyn, if we didn’t have to pay the banks interest then we wouldn’t have to have the banks austerity. The real problem is the system – the privately-owned interest-bearing credit creation system called banks and money. It is simple maths.

        • Olwyn 7.1.1.1

          I accept what you are saying, but would still like to know what the Labour caucus’s answer would be to my question. It could be framed as, “If push comes to shove, how far are you willing to go to defend your constituency against the system? Are you willing to employ your imagination, you wiles and your courage on behalf of ordinary people? Or are you more likely to employ PR people so as to get away with shafting them on the system’s behalf?”

  8. Carol 8

    Note to the NZ Herald management. I am now boycotting your shonkey website. Yet again you are participating in the Nat government diversionary propaganda by posting another John Key dance video. Shame on you.

    • Jackal 8.1

      What gets me is the delay in posting articles online that aren’t cheerleading for Key and the rest of the rightwing charlatan’s. It’s those little manipulations that really piss me off the most. The NZ Herald often typifies unbalanced journalism, but hopefully the so-called dream team will make a bit of difference. Pity they aren’t cutting O’Sullivan and a few of the other crusty National propagandists at the same time.

      • Lanthanide 8.1.1

        Most likely that’s simply perception bias on your part.

        • Jackal 8.1.1.1

          Which part… The delay in putting leftist articles online or that O’Sullivan is a Nat propagandist? These would only be down to my perception if they weren’t verifiable facts Lanthanide.

          • Lanthanide 8.1.1.1.1

            The supposed ‘delay’ in putting ‘leftist’ articles online.

            • Jackal 8.1.1.1.1.1

              And how exactly is that perception biased Lanthanide? The NZ Herald is right leaning, and the editor often promotes National’s rhetoric. Such observations are based on facts and not bias Lanthanide. Would you like some examples perhaps?

              • Grumpy

                Tapu Misa, Brian Rudman…….righties??

                Yeah, right!

                • felix

                  lolz Grumpy.

                  And Penthouse can’t really be considered a porn mag because sometimes it publishes articles about sports cars.

  9. fnjckg 9

    BBC @ noon:

    Assad-vowed “will defeat foreign plot against whole region….conspiracy at any cost”

    Could be very costly
    ah megiddo megiddo megiddo….

  10. tc 10

    I thought Gaynor’s piece on the inconsistency and governance in NZ companies was as close as granny will get to actually stating what a cosy bunch of self serving overpaid lawyers and accountants we have on the boards of NZ companies doing SFA.

    Crank the handle and profits spew forth at the likes of Foodstuffs, Vector, Contact etc etc, to paraphrase blackadder ‘a strategically shaved chimp could do that’

    • muzza 10.1

      “a strategically shaved chimp could do that”

      –But only if its a member of the “right” clubs eh!

    • fnjckg 10.2

      Brian Gaynor wrote an interesting Peace recently outlining the economic, and related, factors likely to make Aotearoa New Zealand “competitive” (finger down throat) while screwing the poor, working class, and middle classes further into the ground whence they came.
      Article took quite a critical social gaze i thought.

      Any how, here is something some people might Value
      (then i better have some lunch)

      For all people who were ignorant of ( ) were foolish by nature;
      and they were unable from the good things that are seen to know the one who exists, nor did they recognize the artisan while paying heed to ( ) works;
      but they supposed that either fire or wind or swift air, or the luminaries of heaven were the gods that rule the world.
      If through delight in the beauty of these things people assumed them to be gods, let them know how much better than these is their ( ), for the author of beauty created them. And if
      people were amazed at their power and working, let them perceive from them how much more powerful is the one who formed them…………………………
      …Yet,
      these people are little to be blamed, for perhaps they go astray while seeking ( )
      and desiring to find ( )

      Wisdom 13: 1-the bits i picked out.

      Anyhow, my thought for today is “anthropocentrism is the fall”
      cos man, it’s a really big universe and it is moving very fast!

    • DH 10.3

      Gaynor was complaining more about the related party meddling in publicly listed companies, it’s been wrecking the NZX for near thirty years. The big players get themselves on the board and use their position to get favorable deals for themselves at the expense of the small shareholders.

      That’s what Parker & Cunliffe etc really need to fix if they want more investment in business. CGT won’t solve anything but some prison sentences might.

      • Colonial Viper 10.3.1

        That’s what Parker & Cunliffe etc really need to fix if they want more investment in business. CGT won’t solve anything but some prison sentences might.

        We don’t need investment in NZX companies. We need investment in businesses which are the backbone of the NZ economy: those with 10 employees or less.

  11. Carol 11

    So Genesis says it’s ready for privatisation, because it’s increased its profits, partly due to a rise in retail and wholesale electricity prices….?

    Great! So we had to pay more (directly or indirectly) so that the minority of shareholders who buy into the company will benefit! Where’s our share of the profits?

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Genesis-Energy-well-prepared-for-partial-privatisation/tabid/421/articleID/267000/Default.aspx

    The chief executive of Genesis Energy says it is “well prepared” for partial privatisation.

    He made the comments in a briefing to analysts after Genesis announced a net profit in the year to June of $90 million. That was a turnaround from a loss of almost $17 million in the previous year.

    Genesis says higher generation volumes, higher electricity prices and higher gas sales in both wholesale and retail markets helped increased revenue.

    • just saying 11.1

      I recently got an email from Genesis telling me my power pricing was going to “change” and on my current usage it would cost about $15 per month more. Weirdly, they said the price “change” was because pricing in my ‘street’ hadn’t been reviewed since 2009.

      What a drag changing powercos. What publicly owned companies are okay?

  12. lenore 12

    “John stop spending your money on couches!”

  13. captain hook 13

    Wheres our share of the profits?
    In the bank so they can pay off the new owners for investing our money in their profits.

  14. Pascal's bookie 14

    Pretty amazing footage of a Syrian helicopter, doing what the govt claims is “falling down”

    http://t.co/GzehAcRL

    I think you see the ‘front fall off” before it “falls down”.

    • felix 14.1

      Looks like it overheated a little too.

      • Colonial Viper 14.1.1

        Wow. Was it mechanical failure which caused that helicopter to burst into flames and break apart? Or a (western supplied?) shoulder launched ground to air missile.

        • Pascal's bookie 14.1.1.1

          No no no. Nothing like that. It just fell down.

          (no sign of a rocket trail though.)

        • Te Reo Putake 14.1.1.2

          Western supplied? Maybe, but more likely Russian, given the amount of gear Syrian army defectors have taken with them. Either way, not a good day for the dictatorship.

  15. Interesting, Roy Morgan have polled people on if they are unemployed or not.  The results are interesting, the real rate is said to be 9.1% and the under employed rate a further 9.6%.

    This is an interesting result.  I know a bunch of really talented intelligent people at University who are doing masters and Phds because the jobs are just not there.

    If this is going to be a real analysis of a problem then we should research the problem properly. 

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      I know a bunch of really talented intelligent people at University who are doing masters and Phds because the jobs are just not there.

      If this is going to be a real analysis of a problem then we should research the problem properly.

      Perhaps those Masters and PhD students from the former can set their minds on to solving the latter?

      And from what I can see, quite a few students pursuing postgrad research pathways are not that suited for it, and would actually far prefer to be doing something else. Yet they often have no idea what. And as an unfortunate corollary to NZ not having enough positions for highly qualified individuals, these post grad students don’t have the practical skills and real world experience to be employable at anything less.

  16. Peter 16

    Research suggests that those who believe in the free market are less likely to believe in climate change? Surprised?

    https://theconversation.edu.au/supporters-of-the-free-market-more-likely-to-reject-science-9086

  17. Draco T Bastard 17

    Finally got myself a copy of Debunking Economics – Revised and Expanded Edition: The Naked Emperor Dethroned? and decided to share this bit:

    In one sense, their ignorance is utterly justified, because they are behaving in the same way that professionals do in genuine sciences like physics. Most physicists don’t check what Einstein actually wrote on the Theory of Relativity, because they are confident that Einstein got it right, and that their textbooks accurately communicate Einstein’s core ideas. Similarly, most economists don’t check to see whether core concepts like ‘supply and demand microeconomics’ or ‘representative agent macroeconomics’ are properly derived from well-grounded foundations, because they simply assume that if they’re taught by the textbooks, then there must be original research that confirms their validity.
    In fact, the exact opposite is the case: the original research confirms that all these concepts are false. Virtually every concept that is taught as gospel in the textbooks has been proved to be unsound in the original literature.

    emphasis mine.

    • Ianmac from Vietnam 17.1

      You mean we shouldn’t take everything as gospel whether it is in the bible or the Economics Textbook? Mind you there might at least be some tenuous foundation for one of those two.

  18. Draco T Bastard 18

    My saying”we can’t afford the rich” is actually wrong. The correct formulation is that we can’t afford an economic system that produces the rich.

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    Evening ReportBy MIL_Syndication
    12 hours ago
  • Statement on behalf of Craig (Mark Lundy’s brother) and his wife
    Source: New Zealand Police – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Statement on behalf of Craig (Mark Lundy's brother) and his wife Home » News » Statement on behalf of Craig (Mark Lundy’s brother) and his wife ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Syndication
    12 hours ago
  • Surge in New Zealand’s broadband speeds
    Source: New Zealand Government – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Surge in New Zealand’s broadband speeds Latest international figures on broadband speeds have reported New Zealand’s average connection speeds have increased by almost 60 per cent in the past year, said Communications… ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Syndication
    12 hours ago
  • Surge in New Zealand’s broadband speeds
    Source: New Zealand Government – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Surge in New Zealand’s broadband speeds Latest international figures on broadband speeds have reported New Zealand’s average connection speeds have increased by almost 60 per cent in the past year, said Communications… ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Politics
    12 hours ago
  • Spot the slightly uncomfortable looking Tory posh boy
    Who's just realised the people beside him might not have gone to Eton:Someone should have givben him a bacon sandwich to eat, that might have made him feel more relaxed. ...
    12 hours ago
  • Gun control: Water balloon edition
    How many water balloons does it take to stop a point-blank bullet from a .44 Magnum? We've all wondered for a while. Finally, an answer (the fun part starts around 1:55): Amazing, right? Everyone loves a little physics nerdery.… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    13 hours ago
  • Real changes must come from CYF review – Ardern
    Source: New Zealand Labour Party – Real changes must come from CYF review Labour MP, Jacinda Ardern. A well-overdue revamp of Child, Youth and Family cannot be just another cost cutting exercise, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Labour… ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Politics
    13 hours ago
  • The cost of GCSB spying
    What's the cost of the GCSB's mass-surveillance of the Pacific? "Fewer whistleblowers, more corruption, less stability", according to Public Address:Fewer whistleblowers, more corruption, less stability. That's the assessment of longtime Pacific journalist Jason Brown of the impact of the revelation… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    13 hours ago
  • Yet another external review the last thing CYF needs
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Minister Tolley’s announcement of a Paula Rebstock-led review into Child, Youth and Family (CYF) is the last thing needed by an organisation that has demonstrated it can assess and plan for its own needs. ...
    13 hours ago
  • VIDEO: ‘My daughter’s education is my duty,’ says Vanuatu cyclone fat...
    MIL OSI Analysis – Pacific Media Centre/Pacific Media Watch Ten-year-old Joana Bani tells her story at Black Sand near Vanuatu’s capital of Port Vila. Video: UNDP Pacific Wednesday, April 1, 2015 Item: 9189 Alice Clements PORT VILA (UNDP Pacific/Pacific… ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Syndication
    13 hours ago
  • WEST PAPUA: Media restrictions over simmering struggle 50 years on
    MIL OSI Analysis – Pacific Media Centre/Pacific Media Watch A rally in Jakarta for the Free Papua Movement. Image: CPJ/Reuters Wednesday, April 1, 2015 Item: 9190 Bob Dietz NEW YORK (Committee to Protect Journalists/ Pacific Media Watch): One of the… ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Syndication
    13 hours ago
  • $7.8m for new sustainable farming projects
    MIL OSI – Source: New Zealand Government – Press Release/Statement Headline: $7.8m for new sustainable farming projects 29 new projects have been approved for $7.8 million in new funding over four years through the Sustainable Farming Fund (SFF), Primary Industries… ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Syndication
    13 hours ago
  • MBIE takes enforcement action for dairy farm employment law breaches
    MIL OSI - Source: New Zealand Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment MBIE – Press Release/Statement: Headline: MBIE takes enforcement action for dairy farm employment law breaches Enforcement action is being taken against 19 employers in the dairy industry for… ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Syndication
    13 hours ago
  • Many regions need by-election levels of support – Labour
    Source: New Zealand Labour Party – Many regions need by-election levels of support Labour MP, David Clark. Northland is not the only region struggling under the National Government, but unfortunately places like Gisborne, Whanganui and Tasman do not have… ...
    Evening ReportBy MIL_Politics
    13 hours ago
  • No good reason for secrecy
    Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee recently returned from Iraq with an impunity agreement enabling the deployment of New Zealand troops. But he's refusing to release it:Labour has attacked the degree of secrecy about the preparation of a New Zealand troop deployment… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    13 hours ago
  • New Zealand First’s Succession Plan
    Last time I met a New Zealand First MP, I decided to ask him about New Zealand First’s succession plan. He replied “why would we need a succession plan? Winston Peters isn’t going anywhere” “Well, Winston Peters is not as… ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    14 hours ago
  • The importance of circulation workers in 21st century capitalism
    New Zealand disribution workers While the article below is about the United States, it is highly relevant to the New Zealand situation. by Joe Allen Amateurs study strategy, professionals study logistics,” US Army General Omar Bradley famously said. Bradley’s declaration was… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    14 hours ago
  • The cost of corporate tax cheating in Australia
    How much does corporate tax-cheating cost us? In Australia, A$25 billion a year - enough to eliminate two-thirds of the government budget deficit:Australia's biggest 900 companies claimed tax deductions and exemptions worth a total $25 billion last year – enough… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    14 hours ago
  • Union merger gives local government sector a stronger voice
    On 1 April 2015 the Southern Local Government Officers Union (SLGOU) and the Public Service Association Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi (PSA) merged. Already New Zealand’s largest union, the merger brings the PSA’s membership to nearly 62,000. ...
    14 hours ago
  • March ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    There are now over 300 blogs on the list, although I am weeding out those which are no longer active or have removed public access to sitemeters. (Let me know if I weed out yours by mistake, or get your stats wrong).… ...
    14 hours ago
  • the stone in Winston
    The Greens made a good choice in not standing a candidate in the Northland by-election but the win from Winston and NZF is not good news for them.I like the Green Party and I'd be happy if they were dominant… ...
    16 hours ago
  • Secret squirrel
    The New Zealand Herald reports: Labour has attacked the degree of secrecy about the preparation of a New Zealand troop deployment to Iraq. The ABC in Australia revealed yesterday that New Zealand troops had begun training with the Australian Defence… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    16 hours ago
  • A victory on freshwater
    Fresh water quality is one of the big environmental battlegrounds in New Zealand, with the government hellbent on destroying it for the profit of its cronies in the dairy sector, while the public understandably wants rivers which are safe to… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    16 hours ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day. And the big question is what will the parties do in expectation of the shift in the balance of power when the Northland by-election results are finalised? Will they filibuster to prevent ballots or preserve… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    17 hours ago
  • Midweek lunch break
    Sit back and relax to these soothing, beautiful Wrestlemania 31 gifs. Best. Entrance. Ever. Dean. Fucking. Ambrose. Ronda. Fucking. Rousey. Super. Ladder. Plex. RKO. Outta. Nowhere. ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    17 hours ago
  • No spy, no fly
    A really disturbing report out of the US: The United States Justice Department has moved to dismiss a lawsuit in which American Muslims allege that that twenty-five law enforcement officials, particularly FBI agents, had them placed on the No Fly… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    17 hours ago
  • Will the Govt’s new HomeStarter scheme make it easier to buy a house?
    The Government is defending a new subsidy scheme for low and middle income couple who build a new home, but the Labour Party says it will add to the housing crisis. New Zealanders on the hunt for their first home… ...
    17 hours ago
  • Invercargill to become New Zealand’s Capital City
    At a specially called press conference this morning, Prime Minister John Key announced that Invercargill was to become New Zealand's new capital. The news was unexpected as there had been no awareness that moving the capital was even being considered.Key… ...
    17 hours ago
  • Not in my backyard!
    As we have written before on Transportblog, we think that choice in housing and transport markets is really important. In particular, Aucklanders need to be able to choose not to live in apartments. Therefore we must act now to ban… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    18 hours ago
  • The Nashing Of Labour’s Teeth: Why Being Green Ain’t Getting An...
    Red In Tooth And Claw: Stuart Nash, winner of the provincial seat of Napier, clearly intends to build Labour's vote by savaging the Greens. IF THE GREENS want a glimpse of their future with Labour, then they should listen to… ...
    18 hours ago
  • Hard News: The other kind of phone tapping
    When I was a lad, we didn't have your fancy smartphones. We didn't have mobile phones at all, which meant there was much greater need for public payphones and they were consequently more numerous. The funny thing was, there was… ...
    19 hours ago
  • The Age of Sustainable Development
    It is profoundly depressing to hear pundits and politicians talking about the prospects for economic growth with no reference to either equity or environmental constraints. In the case of New Zealand a “rock star” economy can apparently develop accompanied by… ...
    Hot TopicBy Bryan Walker
    19 hours ago
  • Asbestos needs a ban and a plan – petition presented
    Workers have today presented a petition signed by over a thousand New Zealanders calling on the Government to ban the importation of asbestos and develop a comprehensive plan for the removal of all existing asbestos in New Zealand.  Photo:  … ...
    CTUBy andrew.chick
    19 hours ago
  • Genius from google
    PacMan on google maps. I'm guessing for today only. Complete genius. Sweet! Just click on the PacMan logo on the bottom left and you're off. The Courtenay Place end of Wellington is easier to play than the Parliament end.… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    19 hours ago
  • Hard News: The GCSB and the consequences of mass surveillance
    Fewer whistleblowers, more corruption, less stability.That's the assessment of longtime Pacific journalist Jason Brown of the impact of the revelation that the GCSB has been conducting "full take" collection of communications in Samoa, Fiji, Solomon Islands and other Pacific nations… ...
    19 hours ago
  • Paid Parental leave increases – but more work needed
    Workers are pleased that, from today, paid parental leave increases from 14 to 16 weeks, but unfortunately New Zealand is still well behind the support that other countries offer to new parents, the Council of Trade Unions said. Photo:  … ...
    CTUBy Huia.Welton
    20 hours ago
  • QOTD: snark vs smarm
    From the epic On Smarm by Tom Scocca at Gawker: Snark is often conflated with cynicism, which is a troublesome misreading. Snark may speak in cynical terms about a cynical world, but it is not cynicism itself. It is a theory of… ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    20 hours ago
  • Birkenhead Transport orders triple-articulated double decker bus
    Birkenhead Transport announced today that it is planning replace its entire fleet with a single triple-articulated double decker bus. The bus is 57m long and over 4m tall. The Walfisch 57 double decker triple-bendy bus. Owner, managing director and part… ...
    20 hours ago
  • The X Factor NZ: That summer feeling
    Improvements have been made, true contenders are emerging and Dominic Bowden only grows in power.   X Factor NZ judges Shelton Woolwright, Natalie Bassingthwaighte, Stan Walker and Melanie Blatt. Photo: The X Factor NZ A good X… ...
    20 hours ago
  • MPs back animal testing ban
    From left, owner of Crumpet the Rabbit Greta-Mae McDowell, Green Party MP Mojo Mathers and #BeCrueltyFree campaigner Tara Jackson. MPs have unanimously supported a ban on animal testing in New Zealand for finished cosmetic products and their… ...
    21 hours ago

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  • Many regions need by-election levels of support
    Northland is not the only region struggling under the National Government, but unfortunately places like Gisborne, Whanganui and Tasman do not have by-elections on the horizon, Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark says. “A desperate National Party has thrown money… ...
    14 hours ago
  • Real changes must come from CYF review
    A well-overdue revamp of Child, Youth and Family cannot be just another cost cutting exercise, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Labour has been pushing for a review for some time. It was part of our policy at the election. ...
    14 hours ago
  • Latest Air NZ plan carries on regional snub
    Christchurch Labour Members of Parliament have secured a meeting with Air New Zealand boss Christopher Luxon following the airline’s decision to cut its Christchurch to Tokyo summer flights.  They are also calling on the Minister of Transport Simon Bridges to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Carmel Sepuloni back in Social Development role
    Andrew Little has reinstated Carmel Sepuloni as Labour’s Social Development spokesperson following the sentencing of her mother in the New Plymouth District Court today. “It has been a tough time for Carmel, but we both agreed it was appropriate she… ...
    2 days ago
  • Government taking Kiwis for April Fools
    Many Kiwis will be wondering if the joke is on them when a raft of Government changes come into effect tomorrow, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “First is ACC and National’s unwillingness to end its rort of Kiwi businesses which… ...
    2 days ago
  • Time to show RMA housing affordability plans
    Labour is challenging the Government to reveal its plans to make housing more affordable through amending the Resource Management Act, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Labour remains willing to consider the proposals on housing affordability on their merits and… ...
    2 days ago
  • John Key now admits no broad support for RMA changes
    John Key has now been forced to admit that he never had the broad political support to gut the Resource Management Act, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson Megan Woods. “Cornerstone legislation such as the RMA should never be changed without genuine… ...
    3 days ago
  • National’s changes leave student bodies in chaos
    The chaos created by National’s scrapping of compulsory student association membership may force the 86-year old Union of Students Association to fold, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “National’s 2011 Voluntary Student Membership Act has left student associations with… ...
    3 days ago
  • Tragedy must be impetus for better training
    The Police Minister needs to explain why unsworn and inadequately trained custody officers were put in a situation of caring for a medically unwell prisoner on a busy Saturday night, Labour’s Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. Commenting on an IPCA… ...
    6 days ago
  • Government must be more transparent on investor state clauses
    The Government must be more transparent around the draft investor state dispute settlements in the TPPA, says David Parker, Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson. “Labour is pro trade, and is proud of the FTA we negotiated with China, which… ...
    6 days ago
  • Protect university staff and student voices
    The Green Party believes ensuring student and staff representation on university councils is important. National recently passed a law reducing the size of university governance councils while increasing the proportion of the members nominated by, guess who… Steven Joyce. The… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    7 days ago
  • C’mon Nick what’s the truth on the RMA
     “Nick Smith has got to fess up and tell us what is happening to his much vaunted RMA reform, Labour’s Environment spokesperson Megan Woods says.  “With just a day and a half to go before the polls open in Northland,… ...
    7 days ago
  • SSC salaries sink National’s spending spin
    Massive pay rises at the State Services Commission prove National’s claims of clamping down on spending in the public sector are simply fantasy, Labour’s State Services spokesman Kris Faafoi says. “Salaries in this one department are almost $70,000 more than… ...
    7 days ago
  • We can fix Christchurch and keep our assets
    The Christchurch City Council is seeking public feedback on its proposed 10 year plan for Council revenue and spending. This is probably one of the most significant 10 year plans ever to be written by a local council because of… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    7 days ago
  • Epidemic of serious assaults in our prisons
    Labour wants stab proof vests and pepper spray for all corrections officers to keep them safe from the epidemic of serious prison assaults that are occurring around the country’s jails, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “There have been five… ...
    7 days ago
  • Listen to the locals Hekia!
    Minister Hekia Parata needs to understand what consultation is, Port Hills MP Ruth Dyson says. “It means you have to listen to what people say in their submissions and then be able to demonstrate you have considered their views when… ...
    1 week ago
  • Thanking our caregivers
    Let’s celebrate and thank our caregivers. This week is caregivers’ week. It’s a chance to acknowledge the thousands of women, and occasional other person, who are caring for the elderly and disabled in our country. They hold people’s lives in… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Mana Post shop the best outcome for community
    Labour MP for Mana Kris Faafoi has welcomed the move to place the services from the Mana Post shop to a local small business. “This is the best outcome for the community we could ask for. All the vital services… ...
    1 week ago
  • Roundup: UN finds it “probably” causes cancer
    At last the UN has spoken out against the widely-used weedkiller Roundup. The UN’s International Agency for Research on Cancer has identified glyphosate, the principle ingredient in Roundup, as a probable carcinogen. They also include as probable carcinogens the insecticides… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • World water day: eight rivers in one day
    Our photo journey started by the Waioweka (also known as Waioeka) River which flows from Te Urewera to Opotiki, and is surrounded by beautiful forest. The water looked great! Kopeopeo Canal It contrasted greatly with the Kopeopeo Canal near Whakatane,… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • We all benefit when education meets everyone’s needs
    As Dyslexia week comes to a close,  Dyslexia NZ have reminded us that around 10% of our citizens are dyslexic and are entitled to better support. One of their strongest arguments is that failure to provide identification and support for… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • Big change starts small
    Today marks Race Relations Day in New Zealand. Race Relations Day coincides with the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.  The United Nations General Assembly chose this day as it marks the day in 1960 when 69 peaceful… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Israel, Palestine and the question of statehood
    The knife-edge election in Israel complicates the Middle East situation, even more than usual. The Prime Minister-elect, Binyamin Netanyahu, is moving to form a government. Netanyahu has indicated that, during his term, a Palestinian state would not be established. That… ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Christchurch transport goes backwards
    The Green Party has a vision of a liveable, accessible Christchurch with a sense of identity and strong connected communities. Instead, 2013 census figures released by Statistics New Zealand reveal a fractured community, and tell a story of frustrated Christchurch commuters… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Super Fund should divest $140 million in high risk coal
    The Green Party is calling on the New Zealand Super Fund to divest their $140 million investment in coal companies that are vulnerable to becoming financially stranded according to a damning new report from Oxford University. The Smith School of… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Learn to count with Mark Osborne: 0 + 1 = ?
    The adage about the first casualty of war being truth is one that might often be applied to the political battle for hearts and minds, and of course votes. A rather unfortunate example of this has been arriving in the… ...
    GreensBy David Clendon MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Is it still a safety net when the holes are this big?
    Over the last few weeks I’ve been wondering how safe our income support system is for people, especially those with cognitive or learning disabilities. I’ve been trying to support a young man who was severely injured in a workplace accident… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Pasifika – protecting the Pacific needed now more than ever.
    Over the weekend thousands of Aucklanders flocked to celebrate our city’s diverse Pacific communities and cultures at the annual Pasifika festival and the Greens were there to join them. The Pasifika festival has been held every year for 23… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Sounds Stakeholders Seek a Sustainable Future
    It was heartening to see a large number of people who care about the Marlborough Sounds come together at the Marlborough Marine Futures’ forum in Picton on March 8. Fellow Green MP Steffan Browning, who lives in Marlborough, and I… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    3 weeks ago

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