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Archive for September, 2011

Gross National Happiness

Written By: - Date published: 10:37 am, September 27th, 2011 - 6 comments

Happiness surrounds us in our lives; our music tells us to be happy, our facebook profiles suggest we’re always happy, and most of us have a willingness to work for material happiness. Yet happiness is a subject often missing from political discourse in our country, suppressed by talk of dairy and the dollar which dominates the halls of Parliament.

The last student protest?

Written By: - Date published: 9:15 am, September 27th, 2011 - 55 comments

One of the big stories last night was the anti-VSM protest at Auckland Uni.  Was it the last one we will see in NZ?  That would suit the Nats very nicely – sheep will be so much easier to fleece…

ACT, the continuing implosion

Written By: - Date published: 6:27 am, September 27th, 2011 - 34 comments

On Sunday, Don Brash decided to muse on decriminalising cannabis. It’s not ACT policy, we’re meant to understand, it’s just the Party Leader making a speech and saying ‘this would be a good idea’. In classic Brash style, he hadn’t told John Banks, who gave Brash a public smacking on the idea. Now the question is: why would the people of Epsom vote for these two?

Open mike 27/09/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 27th, 2011 - 55 comments

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…

Caption Competition

Written By: - Date published: 2:00 pm, September 26th, 2011 - 67 comments

Khan: Afghanistan War can’t build peace

Written By: - Date published: 12:21 pm, September 26th, 2011 - 22 comments

Guyon Espiner interviewed Imran Khan, whose party is poised for victory in the Pakistani elections next year. He had stark words on how the Pakistani allegiance with the US during the war in Afghanistan has fueled radicalism and resistance. His message to New Zealand is: your soldiers are only making things worse. Will John Key listen?

Over-promise, under-deliver

Written By: - Date published: 10:37 am, September 26th, 2011 - 28 comments

John Hartevelt – “Key is massively over-exposed on any number of fronts, but nowhere more so than at Pike River.” Key routinely promises big: close the wage gap, roaring out of recession, national cycleway, no equity loss for redzoners, Pike River bodies out, no GST hike, whaling solved, brighter future. He NEVER delivers. How does […]

Banks’ Epsom chances up in smoke?

Written By: - Date published: 9:06 am, September 26th, 2011 - 66 comments

Decriminalising marijuana just makes sense. 400,000 people are regular users. Prohibition costs half a billion a year, is ineffective, and fuels the gangs. So good on Brash for raising the issue. It’s totally consistent with ACT’s values. Problem is, John Banks and Don Nicolson don’t share those values. Gonna be fun to watch Banks on this issue in Epsom.

Partisan politics

Written By: - Date published: 7:12 am, September 26th, 2011 - 45 comments

John Key is ridiculously negative on seemingly any proposal raised by a perceived political opponent.  Which is a pity, because there are issues facing the country that need a bipartisan consensus.

Open mike 26/09/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 26th, 2011 - 43 comments

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…

Be careful what you wish for

Written By: - Date published: 3:25 pm, September 25th, 2011 - 43 comments

On Friday the government announced a law change that opens the door to a whole world of cheap contract labour now available to anyone producing short projects like advertisements, tv episodes or parts of movies in New Zealand.

Many of the industry locals who will be most hurt by this are the same ones who were banging the drum against actors and for international producers during the Hobbit dispute. Ironic, huh?

Open mike 25/09/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 25th, 2011 - 60 comments

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…

Why’s Boscawen really quitting?

Written By: - Date published: 12:38 am, September 25th, 2011 - 43 comments

Out of the blue, John Boscawen has announced he is withdrawing from ACT’s list. It’s an odd departure from an odd man. ‘Family reasons’ is the line. Not exactly creative. Is the real reason National’s ‘fixit’ Bill? Boscawen is a true believer in ACT’s libertarian principles and doesn’t do compromise. Was being asked to sign a retrospective blank cheque the final straw?

Give thanks to the dog-waggers

Written By: - Date published: 3:56 pm, September 24th, 2011 - 6 comments

One of the criticisms levelled at MMP is that it means the tail wags the dog. But if it wasn’t for the Alliance, the Greens and New Zealand first, we wouldn’t have Kiwibank, home insulation, or the Gold Card. We wouldn’t have a competitive New Zealand-owned bank, healthy homes for families who need it, and opportunities for social interaction for seniors. I say thanks to those parties and to MMP.

Jedi Kittens

Written By: - Date published: 2:43 pm, September 24th, 2011 - 2 comments

A little light weekend entertainment.  And blatant page-view grabbing.

NRT: A blank cheque

Written By: - Date published: 12:25 pm, September 24th, 2011 - 17 comments

No Right Turn points out the salient feature of National’s hysterical response to the Supreme Court’s decision on video surveillance. Reading the blank cheque that they are proposing indicates that the government has no understanding of what “the rule of law” means. It certainly does not include half-arsed measures like this.

John Key: Business to blame?

Written By: - Date published: 9:39 am, September 24th, 2011 - 126 comments

John Key explains how the economy is all just a business confidence trick. Apparently businesspeople just need to believe a bit more.

Open mike 24/09/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 24th, 2011 - 34 comments

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…

Weekend social 23/09/2011

Written By: - Date published: 2:00 pm, September 23rd, 2011 - 46 comments

Weekend social is for non political chat. What’s on for the weekend, gigs, film or book reviews, sports, or whatever. No politics, no aggro, why can’t we all just get along?

A brighter future?

Written By: - Date published: 12:31 pm, September 23rd, 2011 - 32 comments

Moving planet

Written By: - Date published: 12:15 pm, September 23rd, 2011 - 7 comments

Moving Planet is a worldwide rally to demand solutions to the climate crisis. It is being held on 24th September 2011 – a day to move beyond fossil fuels.  Check out an event near you…

Brash to split vote, opens door for Clark

Written By: - Date published: 10:30 am, September 23rd, 2011 - 29 comments

Three time election loser Don Brash has announced he will stand in North Shore. Having lost the safe National seat of East Coast Bays twice to Social Credit(!) and the unloseable election as leader in 2005, his odds of defeating even Maggie Barry, a novice best known for her gardening, are poor. But will he split the rightwing vote and let Ben Clark slip though?

English on the economic turmoil

Written By: - Date published: 9:20 am, September 23rd, 2011 - 53 comments

As most of the headlines this morning focus on the crumbling world economy, it was interesting to hear Bill English on RNZ.  Among various inane comments there was one interesting gem, when English called for higher taxes…

The year of the Greens?

Written By: - Date published: 7:26 am, September 23rd, 2011 - 56 comments

Several commentators have suggested recently that the Greens have crossed some kind of “credibility threshold” and are poised for a strong performance in November.  Is this the year of the Greens?

Open mike 23/09/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 23rd, 2011 - 90 comments

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…

Roaring out of recession

Written By: - Date published: 6:07 pm, September 22nd, 2011 - 30 comments

So here we are then.  “Roaring out of recession”.  Or – not.

Inflating more than a blowfish

Written By: - Date published: 11:34 am, September 22nd, 2011 - 39 comments

It is all rather hilarious to watch exactly how stupid people can expend so much effort to not read actual science. But it appears that your average climate change denier (CCD) is far more concerned with inflated gossip than actually understanding anything. There is a great video looking at an instance of this trait.

‘Fixit’ law worse than expected

Written By: - Date published: 9:31 am, September 22nd, 2011 - 79 comments

Labour looks almost certain to oppose the Nats’ ‘fixit’ bill. The draft goes far further than previously thought. It doesn’t just try to suspend the effect of a specific Supreme Court decision in a violation of the separation of powers, it gives Police the power to spy on you without a warrant. Chris Finlayson should resign for even proposing such a heinous law.

Key missing the big picture

Written By: - Date published: 8:09 am, September 22nd, 2011 - 58 comments

It’s a bit of a worry that the PM seems to be clueless about the complexity and interdependence of the world economy. Bill English needs to take him aside and paint him a picture.

Open mike 22/09/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 22nd, 2011 - 123 comments

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…

Prof Robert Wade on economy to 2015

Written By: - Date published: 8:43 pm, September 21st, 2011 - 10 comments

Professor Robert Wade of the London School of Economics and author of the acclaimed Governing the Market will speak on this topic in association with Victoria University School of Government at Lecture Theatre 2, Rutherford House, Wellington at 6pm on Thursday 22nd September. Read more for abstract. Register at www.fabians.org.nz.

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