Written By: - Date published: 5:38 pm, November 10th, 2018 - 188 comments
On 11 November 1918 the guns fell silent across Europe’s slaughter. In the Guns of August, Barbara Tuchman described how that dreadful war started by accident. Daniel Ellsberg warns us now that accidents could happen again, this time in the nuclear age. Ellsberg says first strike is America’s policy, making accidental nuclear winter all the more likely.
Written By: - Date published: 8:46 pm, September 8th, 2018 - 29 comments
In Politik’s 7 September issue we are told that Western diplomats in Wellington are surprised that Winston Peters has not accused Russia of the Skripal poisoning or joined some other countries in taking reprisals. Editor Richard Harman quotes a source to tell us that the British in particular were “pissed” at Peters’ response. Well dearie me. I’m with Winston, a wise old owl.
Written By: - Date published: 8:33 am, September 5th, 2018 - 82 comments
Things are coming to a head in Syria, with a key meeting on 7 August between Syria, Turkey and Russia to discuss future strategy re the Idlib enclave where terrorist groups have been concentrated. The US and its allies want to retain influence, having lost it to Russia. A shooting war based on a false flag is a real albeit disastrous possibility to maintain US “quagmire” policy in the Middle East to date.
Written By: - Date published: 6:45 pm, July 1st, 2018 - 40 comments
Australian Guardian columnist Van Badham writes “the future of the left is bright if it looks like Jacinda Ardern and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes.” She concludes “We can hope the influence of Jacinda Ardern and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes spread, or we can ensure that it does. The stakes for the marginalised remain life and death.” Very worth a read.
Written By: - Date published: 4:03 pm, April 17th, 2018 - 56 comments
The Independent’s Robert Fisk reports from Douma, where he interviewed one of the clinic doctors who said that the images that outraged Trump, May and Macron were real, but the cause was oxygen starvation from dust, not poisonous gas. Could it be that misleading images started a bombing war? What might this say about Western values?
Written By: - Date published: 6:07 pm, April 2nd, 2018 - 99 comments
In the second stage of a false flag attack, facts go out the window and the sole issue becomes “are you for us or against us.” Our media and National Party politicians are well into this stage in the Skripal affair. But as questions mount and skeptics proliferate from all sides, Jacinda Ardern and Winston Peters may well be wiser than media advisers by not following blindly the western herd. 26 countries is not the whole world. Update: Porton Down unable to establish Novichok of Russian origin.
Written By: - Date published: 9:45 pm, March 25th, 2018 - 17 comments
In the days of the British Raj unsportsmanlike behaviour was condemned by saying “it isn’t cricket.” Australian batsman Cameron Bancroft hiding ball-tampering sandpaper in his trousers in a forlorn attempt to avoid the cameras showed that for Aussies “it is cricket.” We’ve seen it before of course with the Chappells. Heads must roll.
Written By: - Date published: 5:55 pm, March 16th, 2018 - 517 comments
The possible poisoning of Sergei Skripal and the consequent hysteria have all the signs of another false flag operation, as we saw before the second American invasion of Iraq. The chain of circumstantial evidence has more holes in it than a swiss cheese, and while attempted murder (if that is what it is) is a criminal act Winston Peters and Jeremy Corbyn are sane voices calling for evidence before any attribution still less action.
Written By: - Date published: 10:08 pm, February 20th, 2018 - 11 comments
The Lord Mayor of the City of London is visiting New Zealand. Its not Sadiq Khan, Charles Bowman is a PwC partner leading London’s financial centre lobby. He’s here to talk to business and regulators. He’ll no doubt be talking up more deregulation.
Written By: - Date published: 9:12 pm, January 31st, 2018 - 20 comments
At a Union/NDP conference in March 2002 in Ottawa I saw wall-to-wall US TV attacking Iraq in my room. My caucus report that America was going to war was instinctive. Helen Clark stood up immediately and said that we wouldn’t be following. The US war dogs are barking again, this time over Korea. A recent […]
Written By: - Date published: 6:58 pm, January 15th, 2018 - 48 comments
“Wedger Wayne” Mapp in todays’s Spinoff does his best to stuff Jacinda Ardern into a Tony Blair “Third Way” box. Too glib by far. True in 2002 Blair did promise to eliminate child poverty by 2020; but poverty’s now the highest in 20 years in Britain. I’d back Jacinda to do much better. Besides, instead of Mandy she’s got David Parker.
Written By: - Date published: 10:30 pm, November 15th, 2017 - 338 comments
What’s with the academic panic epidemic about China? Two in our media in the same week, referencing each other with vague warnings about the Chinese bogey. It’s not quite Lionel Terry in Haining Street again; more likely in my view a case of singing to someones else’s geopolitical tune. No prizes for guessing whose.
Written By: - Date published: 8:25 pm, November 5th, 2017 - 21 comments
Issued alongside the Magna Carta on November 6, 1217, the Charter of the Forest is among the first ecological charters in history and among the first to assert the rights of ordinary people to the right to subsistence. 800 years old tomorrow.
Written By: - Date published: 6:11 pm, October 18th, 2017 - 19 comments
Most viewed story on the Guardian website today: “New Zealand library cracks case of missing books.” Turns out some of Auckland’s 23,000 homeless were hiding bookmarked books in odd places so they wouldn’t lose their place. The library will now keep their books safe. Good on them. Finding homes for homeless must be a high priority for Aotearoa’s next government.
Written By: - Date published: 3:14 pm, October 12th, 2017 - 19 comments
The massive artillery barrage at Passchendaele was supposed to cut the German wire and make advance easy. All it did was churn up the mud though which so many doomed New Zealanders slogged and died. A monument to military incompetence and political disaster. These days they prefer bombs, which are equally deadly and equally futile. Its time we said no more.
Written By: - Date published: 5:46 pm, October 9th, 2017 - 56 comments
Policy is everything, Winston Peters said today. This should not be a surprise. Before every election, he has refused to give any hint of Party support preference until after the vote. But he will have thought a lot about what he might want, as it has long been clear that his Party would decide the outcome. So what are his policies?
Written By: - Date published: 12:23 am, September 17th, 2017 - 73 comments
Great read in London today – full page Guardian article headlined “I’ve got what it takes, says the charismatic Labour leader taking New Zealand by storm.” Send it far and wide.
Written By: - Date published: 3:00 pm, August 12th, 2017 - 60 comments
Donald Trump may not know it but Koreans certainly remember the last time the United States unleashed fire and fury over North Korea. In the 1950s, B-29s used bombs and napalm to flatten every North Korean city. Gen Curtis Lemay boasted that the USAF killed off 20% of the population. That’s why this time they have nuclear weapons.
Written By: - Date published: 9:28 pm, July 6th, 2017 - 3 comments
Bryce Edwards, Stephanie Rodgers and Rob Egan. Connolly Hall, Guildford Street, Wellington, 5:30 pm Friday 7th July.Fabian society, all welcome.
Written By: - Date published: 8:12 pm, June 28th, 2017 - 43 comments
On 20 June after Melanie Read’s Newsroom interview Andrew Geddis blogged about possible obstruction of justice by a National Party Board member. That was based on new information in the Barclay case, and may be why the Police have since re-interviewed Glenys Dickson.
Written By: - Date published: 10:39 pm, June 22nd, 2017 - 49 comments
Bill English’s texted electorate chair Stuart Davie on 21st February 2016 saying Glenys Dickson was given an extra payout from the Leader’s fund “to avoid potential legal action.” It was the only source available for an extra payout for confidentiality. English said today no-one in February knew there was any issue of illegality. Then what legal action and why an extra payment?
Written By: - Date published: 4:05 pm, June 8th, 2017 - 27 comments
Latest polls and some anecdotal evidence from the doorstep are showing a move back to the Tories in Britain. If so it may in part be due to last-minute dark and dirty personally targeted Facebook advertising to voters in marginal seats. They cost so will need to be watched later on here.
Written By: - Date published: 8:23 pm, June 5th, 2017 - 13 comments
Nicky Hager will talk about his book Hit and Run, and the issues it raises about New Zealand’s values and role in the world at 5:30pm on Wednesday 7th June at Connolly Hall, Guildford Terrace, Wellington. The book is about important events and the incoherence of New Zealand fighting it’s longest ever war in Central Asia. This talk is particularly timely in view of this week’s visit of the American Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson.
Written By: - Date published: 2:11 pm, March 27th, 2017 - 12 comments
I went to Q+A yesterday in search of political comment and was astonished to see John McTernan aka “Malcolm Tucker without the charm” given ten minutes to burble. McTernan promotes himself as a former political adviser to Blair and Gillard, but his last real job was chief of staff to Jim Murphy who led the Scottish Labour Party to oblivion in 2015.
Written By: - Date published: 11:14 pm, March 4th, 2017 - 45 comments
First they came for the budgeting services. Now we know that every social service agency has to provide clients’ private personal data to the Ministry of Social Development or get no funding. Apparently it’s essential to Bill English’s much-touted and little understood “social investment” strategy, which is sounding more like something out of Orwell’s 1984. […]
Written By: - Date published: 11:38 am, March 3rd, 2017 - 9 comments
I well remember going to see new Minister of Employment Annette King in 1989 to ask for support for group apprenticeship in the motor industry. “Seems like a good idea, we’ll put up $50,000.” she said. I nearly fell off my chair. It was not the usual response from Ministers in those days, but is Annette King to a T – positive, decisive, and supportive.
Written By: - Date published: 1:28 pm, February 17th, 2017 - 97 comments
Andrew Little’s announcement yesterday in Gisborne of Labour’s pledge of up to $20million to build a prefabricated timber plant there is a much-needed boost to the area and a sign that Labour’s 100,000 new house pledge first made by David Shearer in 2012 has legs.
Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, February 10th, 2017 - 33 comments
The Herald informs us that Key is going on the speaking circuit and will go back into finance (not that he ever left). Like John Howard before him, he also intends to carry on chairing the International Democratic Union of right-wing parties. Not a surprise.
Written By: - Date published: 10:26 pm, February 9th, 2017 - Comments Off on Prof John Quiggin – After Reform, What Comes Next?
University of Queensland Professor John Quiggin, author of Zombie Economics, will speak on this topic for the Fabian Society in Wellington on Monday 13th and Auckland Thursday 16th of this month. All welcome, details and registration inside. Will be interesting.
Written By: - Date published: 11:08 am, February 2nd, 2017 - 86 comments
From a Business Insider article in the OIA papers: Thiel is a long-term thinker, so what’s the big picture? What could the contrarian investor see in a country of 4 million people whose economy is based on agriculture and tourism? Maybe Peter Thiel wants to turn New Zealand into the next Silicon Valley. Or maybe even the libertarian utopia of his dreams.”
Written By: - Date published: 4:24 pm, January 26th, 2017 - 9 comments
Today marks 75 years to the day since the suicidal Battle of Endau, when obsolete aircraft were sent to prevent the Japanese landing. Of the 72 aircrew from Nos. 36 and 100 Squadrons who participated in the raids, 27 were killed, seven were wounded and two were captured. My uncle was killed but Ron Reid survived the raid and captivity. He is interviewed by Dave Homewood of WONZ in memory of the day.