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Power across the Tasman

Written By: - Date published: 8:22 am, November 30th, 2020 - 25 comments

Australia is likely to have less of an issue with raging bush fires this year. La Niña is likely to give a break to the droughts with a wetter East Coast. Doesn’t stop record heatwaves as is happening at present. Climate change in action. What is also happening is equally predictable – the power systems get affected as well. Interesting to consider for similar climate issues here hitting our power. 

A tsunami of wing clipped kiwi?

Written By: - Date published: 9:52 am, November 9th, 2020 - 45 comments

The rush back home has definitely been happening and appears to mainly be constrained at present by the limits on quarantine facilities. It has already helped to mitigate the drops in immigration and probably will in the future. Nowhere near as economically important and productive as our exports. But useful for reducing unemployment for those not exposed to the export economy.

President Biden and Vice President Harris.

Written By: - Date published: 6:54 am, November 8th, 2020 - 92 comments

At last. All of the main US media organisations have now called the election for for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris with Pennsylvania. The eventual electoral college vote looks to be over 300 – well above the 270 required as Arizona and Nevada are called. It looks like Georgia will wind up the same way.

Rerun reeferendum

Written By: - Date published: 3:46 pm, November 6th, 2020 - 33 comments

One of the other results from the final results on was the reeferendum. The loss was minuscule in the final results. If I was the yes campaign, I’d be considering pushing this to another referendum soon. It was so close, that the result was mainly due to being run with Covid-19 in the background of the campaign, a unreadable proposed bill, and a surprisingly well funded No campaign.

Less buzz and more cooperative governing

Written By: - Date published: 10:45 am, November 1st, 2020 - 49 comments

I liked the process for the Greens and Labour agreement. From Labour’s side after this election it was logically completely unnecessary, except maybe under some weird scenarios. But it is cooperative and that is clearly something that voters reward these days. Politics isn’t about buzz. It is about effective governance.

Its all just manure – mix it in and avoid the river.

Written By: - Date published: 8:44 am, October 30th, 2020 - 39 comments

There has been a rather patronising meme running in recent weeks that voters who previously voted National did so because they wanted to make sure Labour didn’t want the Greens to be in government. Just complete bullshit. As far as I can see most voters and their MPs vote for our collective future like I do and expect the political mixing to provide good outcomes for us all.

Trump Hacked.

Written By: - Date published: 7:54 pm, October 28th, 2020 - 8 comments

Had to laugh, albeit with a resigned anger, when I saw this in my emails today. This afternoon, the official Trump campaign website was hacked and defaced.

Election day rules 2020

Written By: - Date published: 11:59 pm, October 16th, 2020 - 50 comments

There are some rules around Election day material on a website like ours. These are mandated by the legislation. We will allow comments here during election day. But they will be limited and we expect you to comment lawfully, and moderation will be on our interpretation of the Act. Please read this post before commenting between midnight and 7pm on saturday.

SFO exonerates NZ First

Written By: - Date published: 5:51 pm, September 29th, 2020 - 56 comments

The SFO has put out a press release a few days before overseas voting starts. They have not laid charges against NZ First or anyone in it. They have laid charges against two other people. What I find appalling is that they waited so close to the election before making it clear that whatever NZF did was lawful. To me that smacks of political malfeasance. And the complainants probably should be brought up on charges themselves for wasting police and SFO time. 

The background traffic is loud.

Written By: - Date published: 8:41 am, September 2nd, 2020 - 16 comments

Along with the grey weather, the weather around our local net is downright annoying at present. There are a massive increase in attempts to break into this site via backend systems and brute force front-end logins, a surge in scans from the search engine spider bots, and a lot of requests for putting up paid content. All of which have been ignored or dealt with. Good thing that we aren’t a target like the NZX, banks, mainstream media and the MetService are. 

Greenland ice sheet is disintegrating

Written By: - Date published: 4:48 pm, August 28th, 2020 - 34 comments

For the last 30 years, earth scientists have been warning that Greenland was nearing a tipping point into complete disintegration. Now authors of a new study published in Nature has claimed that, even if the climate now reverted to the levels where it was stable a few decades ago, that would still happen. It is now clear that the IPCC worst case for Greenland is what is now being observed.

Blogs and election fatigue

Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, August 18th, 2020 - 28 comments

One of the characteristics of a political blog in New Zealand is the way that our operations reflect the political cycle. Coming into an election after mid-year, we have a steadily increasing level of traffic, posts, and comments. Moderators, commenters and even authors start showing a more cranky disposition. Now we have a extra month of the campaign. Be kind. Because there tends to be a problem when the system operator gets cranky.

Let them have gardening leave…

Written By: - Date published: 6:59 pm, August 17th, 2020 - 25 comments

“A bunch of retired MPs will now have to come back to work as well, which they will no doubt hate. But at least with current border restrictions, they are unlikely to have fled the country.”. Uh – why exactly? They are almost a sixth of the current parliament. They’re out the door, and there is no substantive work for them to do. I’m sure that puritans of thought will think otherwise – but I think gardening leave is appropiate.

Extend advance voting

Written By: - Date published: 9:15 am, August 17th, 2020 - 11 comments

One thing that Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern should look at asking the Electoral Commission to do would be to extend the period of Advance voting. This was more than a third of the votes in 2017, and is ideal for pandemic voting. It allows to the pressure on polling places to reduce to something similar to queuing for the supermarket.

Covid-19 vs 1918 influenza

Written By: - Date published: 5:29 pm, August 15th, 2020 - 67 comments

Reading a number of articles in the NZ Herald in recent days calling for change in how we handle outbreaks of covid-19 in NZ. The implied precept is the damage covid-19 poses to the population of NZ over time is less than the immediate economic damage. That covid-19 is like the flu and results in herd immunity. However it is far worse than the influenza pandemic of 1918, much longer lasting and we probably won’t reach herd immunity naturally for generations. 

Well that is a bit shit. Auckland level 3. Rest of NZ level 2

Written By: - Date published: 10:14 pm, August 11th, 2020 - 48 comments

Four cases of community transmission from the same family – presumably without an obvious cause. Lock down for 3 days in the Auckland super city area at level 3 starting noon Wednesday. Level 2 for everywhere else outside of Auckland. Allows time for contact tracing and a later decision once facts are known. Good response.

Mea culpa

Written By: - Date published: 12:48 pm, August 2nd, 2020 - 33 comments

Back in 2017 I was upset, we had a leadership vote only in caucus – just before the election. I didn’t realise at the time that Andrew Little was actually stepping down in favour of Jacinda Ardern. She’d had the potential, but I hadn’t realised that Little thought she was up for the task. I’m delighted with the result. Thank you Andrew.

Quarantine costs – critics fruitlessly whine

Written By: - Date published: 9:13 am, July 30th, 2020 - 28 comments

I’m reasonably happy with where the coalition wound up on the quarantine cost recovery. It sends a clear economic signal to businesses and the fools who want to travel during a global pandemic. It will discourage some of the stupidity of the travel addicted. It also balances the legal position. Something that most of the critics clearly aren’t thinking through and cause them to whine without realistic alternatives

Pandemic: a flourishing enterprise. Business needs to get real.

Written By: - Date published: 9:49 am, July 28th, 2020 - 40 comments

A few weeks ago we were at 14 million cumulative confirmed cases of Covid-19 worldwide. A million more cases in just 4 days. Now a few weeks later, we are at 16 million confirmed cases worldwide. The lobbyists and business groups affected by our blocked borders need to get real. We won’t be opening our borders until we get a widely used vaccine later next year (at the earliest). It is too expensive to do so.

COVID-19: A human adapted virus

Written By: - Date published: 9:30 am, July 24th, 2020 - 23 comments

It has been obvious about COVID-19 that it is very well adapted to humans. It has evolved a good entry system to the humans, often has mild symptoms, long pre-symptomatic infectious period, and doesn’t kill many of its hosts. What has been less obvious is where it came from. It looks more like South East Asia rather than China.

Authorised by me

Written By: - Date published: 11:00 am, July 23rd, 2020 - Comments Off on Authorised by me

I finally perused the June 2020 Third Party handbook put out by the Electoral Commission. This morning I activated my authorisation notice. Activists should consider what adverts or promotional material that they’d like me to put up in the right column on the site. It must be directly related to the election day for parliament or for the referendums. And conform to the handbook.

National needs a safe pair of hands: Amy Adams

Written By: - Date published: 9:14 am, July 14th, 2020 - 98 comments

I realise that National probably won’t appreciate my advice. However I actually would like to have a viable competent opposition. I don’t even want an election to be as much of a pushover as this one is likely to be. If I was a stalwart National supporter or a member of their caucus, I’d be pushing for Amy Adams.

National’s ethics

Written By: - Date published: 10:05 am, July 13th, 2020 - 49 comments

There is a particularly resonant piece by Tim Watkin in Pundit. “National’s problem with privacy and privilege”. I’m only surprised that he seems to think that the National party is redeemable. They’re so into their internal myths that they fail to regard anyone or any threat as unless their voting base poll well on it. But that is National for you – they’ve consistent…. Stupid, unhelpful and short on ethics.

Requiem for a smelter

Written By: - Date published: 11:58 am, July 9th, 2020 - 53 comments

New Zealand was always a odd place to have a aluminium smelter. Untapped hydroelectricity capacity at the bottom of the world. But thousands of kilometers from raw material sources. Tens of thousands of kilometers from the major markets. Now our ever rising electricity prices show that we really need that 13% of power in our electricity market rather than making aluminium. 

National’s dilemma – business as usual is failing them.

Written By: - Date published: 9:52 am, July 6th, 2020 - 99 comments

Audrey Young’s take in Granny Herald was interesting. “No ordinary Labour speech by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern”. That is because the political ‘business as usual’ approach by the business orientation of National campaigning using the politics of fear and envy doesn’t work well in times of crisis. Business simply has too short a viewpoint to be acceptable in government at present – or increasingly in our uncertain future.

Judith Collins – dirty politics hypocrite.

Written By: - Date published: 1:31 pm, June 28th, 2020 - 19 comments

I’ve just been reading Andrea Vance’s review of Judith Collin’s released biography. One thing that usually infuriates me is whining arseholes. I have always thought Judith Collins has always been one of them. Vindictive, small-minded, and ignorant. She whines even through a review that merely quotes her.

We don’t know how lucky we are

Written By: - Date published: 10:59 am, June 24th, 2020 - 32 comments

Looking at the rises in covid-19 infections worldwide is just damn depressing. Looking at the media and Nat supporters, the world, and covid-19 -ll I can say is thank you for the internet. And the kiwis who aren’t listening to the whining about here because they can see the slow disaster unfolding elsewhere with incompetent governments.

Humans – doing it to themselves

Written By: - Date published: 11:48 am, June 23rd, 2020 - 30 comments

About the only thing that surprised me was that it took so long for a pandemic to really break out into the modern world. Because our evolutionary and recorded history is mainly punctuated and constrained by disease and environmental change. We invented large cities many times in the past and lost them to plague or drought. It looks like we’re going through that phase again – just at a larger level.

Viable treatment – cheap and proven

Written By: - Date published: 8:10 am, June 17th, 2020 - 9 comments

A medical treatment of drug used since the 1960s in medicine has proven to be effective in reducing the worst effects of human body over-reactive immune responses to covid-19 infections. This will be a boon for the countries with under developed hospital systems that are at the forefront of the current rising wave of infections. And it isn’t quack ‘science’.

Covid-19 still raging.

Written By: - Date published: 9:01 am, June 15th, 2020 - 25 comments

A quick look at rising second wave in the US as covid-19 digs deeper into the less populated states and counties. Because of its deliberate lack of governmental cohesion, the US is a rack of petri dishes testing different strategies. When that comes to disease control and covid-19, that strategy is a bit of a disaster.

Direct small business loan scheme is now working

Written By: - Date published: 12:06 pm, May 27th, 2020 - 26 comments

It was interesting reading this morning that the updated small business owner loan scheme is now working (unlike the previous guarantee through the banks version). National’s new Small Business shadow minister Todd Muller should be all over this between now and the election offering helpful suggestions. I’m going to be fascinated looking at those to see what type of small business he is trying to help…

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