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Author Archive

Direct small business loan scheme is now working

Written By: - Date published: 12:06 pm, May 27th, 2020 - 25 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…

The current National party.

Written By: - Date published: 3:06 pm, May 24th, 2020 - 62 comments

The change of leadership inside of National is essentially meaningless. All it seems to have started is exposing the kind of internecine factional warfare that is lurking below their party surface. I can’t see the inexperienced National team, even with Amy Adams back in it, being able to make the kinds of long-term decisions required in a modern world.

Don’t infect your feline master!

Written By: - Date published: 9:29 am, May 16th, 2020 - 16 comments

In terrible news, our feline masters can both get covid-19, and they can infect other cats. Fortunately so far they have largely been asymptomatic apart from some big cats.

We don’t know if there can be cat to human transmission. But I suspect it is likely. Obvious implications about being a issue for breaking transmission chains.

Covid-19: may be endemic

Written By: - Date published: 8:51 am, May 15th, 2020 - 53 comments

Like measles, covid-19 could become endemic. Never dying out entirely. Needing to be controlled in human denser populations into the indefinite future. That is the warning from top World Health Organisation officials. Like me, they’re looking at reported research into covid-19 immunities and the picture isn’t encouraging. This is no time to be complacent.

Viruses love liberty – they can breed more.

Written By: - Date published: 11:59 am, May 14th, 2020 - 25 comments

Viruses and other diseases simply don’t care about abstractions like ‘human rights’. They just want to breed. We need a better legislative toolkit to deal with epidemics. There is only so long that a draconian state of emergency should be maintained. Like 1918 we need to start thinking about the future Health Act with reserve powers like level 2 and 1. In the meantime, we’ll deal with the virus with this imperfect act as a tool.

Dimwitted habeas corpus duo

Written By: - Date published: 12:50 pm, May 11th, 2020 - 28 comments

The well-known duo of Dermot Nottingham and Robert McKinney were the appellants in habeas corpus High Court case against Arden, Bloomfield, and Stuart-Black over the covid-19 lockdown. As was usual for this pair, the grounds that they made their case on were completely flawed, failed to be presented correctly, and make a damn good case against self-representation from vexatious litigants like them.

Transmission Gully PPP

Written By: - Date published: 10:46 am, May 7th, 2020 - 56 comments

I’d agree with what No Right Turn says..
“The entire project looks to be an expensive failure. Rather than transferring risk to the private sector, it turns out to be the usual scam of privatising profits and socialising losses.”

dear sysop: on covid-19 debt

Written By: - Date published: 3:33 pm, April 25th, 2020 - 60 comments

We put in guest posts occasionally.  These days I’m the person who runs the email account and sees the general ones. Mostly I don’t give any feedback as much as anything else because a lack of time. But I should. This is the first to get that editorial attention. The topic itself is worth discussing. What is the process of raising debt for the cobid-19 economic response.

New electorate boundaries

Written By: - Date published: 9:05 am, April 20th, 2020 - 37 comments

I missed it, but we got the new electorate boundaries on Friday. Now electorate boundaries simply don’t matter as much as they used to because of MMP. These days mostly the only people who notice them are electorate MPs, political parties that are too close to the 5% list party boundary, and of course sock-puppet parties like Act and their National party hand. Plus of course political blog sites.

Don’t plan on a vaccine or persistent natural immunity.

Written By: - Date published: 3:42 pm, April 18th, 2020 - 93 comments

Don’t plan on a vaccine or persistent natural immunity. Unless we’re incredibly lucky, neither are very likely for much of the coming decade. We don’t have the bat immunity systems. Learn to embrace the bets of the future rather than the clinging to the comfy blanket of the past that has now gone.

From the inside out

Written By: - Date published: 10:32 am, April 8th, 2020 - 62 comments

I feel that many kiwis are quite unaware exactly how exceptional our plague performance has been so far. It is interesting reading the perspective published in the Washington Post by a recently returned kiwi. Less interesting was the mathematical illiteracy on the MP David Seymour who managed to ignore all medical facts while advising on how to bulk kill our citizens.

Bill Gates – lets prevent the next inevitable epidemic!

Written By: - Date published: 9:56 pm, April 5th, 2020 - 37 comments

Bill and Melinda Gates have been plowing wealth into mitigating and preventing epidemics over the last decade. Like the World Health Organisation and just about anyone with any sense of medical history, he predicted very accurately the type of epidemic we are now facing – a worldwide respiratory pandemic. He talks about the current pandemic, and how to prevent the next one.

Children: the pandemic has only just begun

Written By: - Date published: 11:09 am, April 5th, 2020 - 113 comments

I’m always intrigued at the capacity of most humans to be self-delusional in the way that they favour to believe regardless of facts. Nothing else could explain the delusional idiots like David Farrar and his mischievous minions wanting to go back to their business as usual – their ministerial scalp collection. It’d be nice if such dimwits thought and established facts before they wrote.

Bauer closures not unexpected. They were invisible

Written By: - Date published: 10:15 am, April 3rd, 2020 - 31 comments

As is typical these days, I heard about the Bauer magazine closures by a link in social media. My initial reaction was shock, but then I considered when the last time that I read them. No-one links to these publications. They were as invisible on the net as the NBR. Or as NZ Herald is starting to be. Realistically no real loss to the general debate.

Please don’t have to bring out your dead.

Written By: - Date published: 12:27 pm, March 29th, 2020 - 45 comments

scene from monty python - bring out your dead - black plague and black humour

Anyone who has read even briefly into written human history is going to be aware that it is as much defined by our epidemics and pandemics as by any of our technical and societal achievements. This post is essentially a quick range over the history of pandemics and epidemics with links and some focus on COVID-19.

That eerie silence

Written By: - Date published: 8:29 am, March 26th, 2020 - 69 comments

Waking up this morning was a bit of an eerie feeling. The alarm went off as usual at 0700 (and the 0880 one just clicked over). Very little traffic noise. The quiet sound of the workstation and server fans was louder than the the remaining white noise from the traffic.

This post is here for you to share your first day under lock-down.

Bye bye parliament for a while.

Written By: - Date published: 3:56 pm, March 25th, 2020 - 10 comments

Gotta love parliament – James Shaw “there are no fiscal conservatives in a foxhole”.

Anyway, parliament in the chamber will be going dark for a few months. So will parliamentary TV (but you can still get that live).

Have a look at the archives from today- there are some politicians who are on form..

Phasing into phase 4

Written By: - Date published: 2:50 pm, March 23rd, 2020 - 147 comments

Heading into phase three, moving into phase four 48 hours later. Here is the video briefing and the quick analysis.

On Mike the Moron and handling infectious diseases

Written By: - Date published: 11:40 am, March 20th, 2020 - 14 comments

Five days ago Mike Hosking was representing his paymasters with his reflection of their basic ignorance of history.  Then demanding caution in dealing with covid-19. Yesterday he panicked for immediate action to close the borders which government did anyway later that day. It is just dangerous to give a public platform to a dithering moron who be at home in 1918. Perhaps he should read the pandemic plan

Covid-19: Back home again

Written By: - Date published: 1:49 pm, March 17th, 2020 - 2 comments

As a programmer, I’ve had a lot of experience with working from home for work, last time was about 13 years ago. Yesterday we got shifted to working from home. The toolkit has changed a lot even in the last few years. What is going to be interesting for me is to see how companies disperse their employees out in the same way over this pandemic – that will be a real test of productivity.

Covid-19 – a political problem

Written By: - Date published: 11:08 pm, March 14th, 2020 - 103 comments

Juice Media on the essential facts about the spread of Covid-19. It concentrates on the United States, where personally I’m picking the US, by the end of the year, as being the biggest medico-political screw up world wide after Iran. Early wishful thinking and a lack of transparency cost lives. Pathetic bullshitting simply doesn’t help.

My reaction to a new Commissioner of Police

Written By: - Date published: 8:24 am, March 10th, 2020 - 15 comments

Previous readers of this site will be aware that I’m not a particularly  enthusiastic supporter of the police. I’m more in the order of regarding our current police of a necessary burden on society that could do with having considerable improvement. While I find most police members to be what I can respect. I find the organisation protects some real idiots. I pity a commissioner having to deal with this.

 

Can Bernie find a clutch and change gear?

Written By: - Date published: 8:54 am, March 5th, 2020 - 33 comments

The basic problem with Bernie Sanders campaign is that his sole political role since the start of his career has been as the archetypal outsider. He injects ideas into the political debate that didn’t get play time, but he didn’t concentrate on making those things happen. Now it is costing him.

Postal voting – essentially dead

Written By: - Date published: 7:41 am, February 25th, 2020 - 62 comments

Stuff has an article up about last years local body elections in Auckland. As usual  the interesting parts are at the end. But I have to reiterate – online voting isn’t the answer. As a programmer, I’d just call it stupid and dangerous.

The demise of single use plastic bags and the limp vege problem

Written By: - Date published: 8:16 am, February 14th, 2020 - 80 comments

The rapid demise of the single use plastic bag has just left one hole in my life. I haven’t (so far) been able to replace the one and only second life use that I ever found for them. They were great at keeping the broccoli and carrots from going limp in the fridge. 

Trump impeachment trial – gold for comedians.

Written By: - Date published: 8:24 am, January 22nd, 2020 - 63 comments

The hypocrisy of the defenders of Trump defenders in the US Senate is providing grist for comedians and satirists. Here are a few examples looking at Trump supporters in the US Senate.

‘Donations’ or bribes

Written By: - Date published: 9:58 pm, November 19th, 2019 - 95 comments

It has been ironic at our media frenzy on political ‘donations’. I suspect that our legal structure has been setup for bribing politicians with ‘donations’. Let us just make all politicians and donors guilty until proven innocent of false reporting of ‘donations’. It’d be more interesting than the current farce. Start with Simon Bridges – currently still under investigation by the SFO.

Small start to inflated bullshit.

Written By: - Date published: 11:05 am, October 29th, 2019 - 14 comments

I was reading one of Chris Trotters reflections which looked at the Corrections Amendment Bill 2018, that just passed its 3rd reading. “Putting The Check In Right-Wing Prisoners’ Mail”. It sounded odd and oddly lacked detail. I came to the conclusion taking press releases at face value without thinking was a very bad idea.

Farmers given a chance. I think National will screw it up for them.

Written By: - Date published: 8:11 am, October 24th, 2019 - 21 comments

One of the less endearing traits of National is their ability to screw almost anything up for short-term advantage regardless how it impacts long-term. Usually this comes from the results of in-fighting within the party. The agricultural emissions deal is likely to get caught again.

The fast death of broadcast free to air TV

Written By: - Date published: 8:19 am, October 22nd, 2019 - 37 comments

That free-to-air TV are getting creamed doesn’t surprise me. TV3 is essentially being given away (or closed). Blame the broadcast model, the pain of noisy advertising and the rush to bottom in taste by chasing the few remaining people who won’t change the habits of a lifetime. What does surprise me is just how fast it is changing.

 

It is a matter of trust. Few trust Boris.

Written By: - Date published: 7:46 am, October 21st, 2019 - 13 comments

As a direct result of the lack of trust by a majority of parliamentarians about how committed Boris supporters are to the process of parliament. They want to see the details of the legislation, debate and pass it before the actual Brexit. Details are the job of MPs.

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