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Barbecue season

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, December 7th, 2016 - 84 comments
Categories: activism, election 2017, john key, Politics - Tags:

barbecue-season-john-key

Just in case the misery of 2016 was presumed to be the preserve of the bourgeoisie left like myself, or music-lovers, its misery has hit the conservative side as well with John Key’s resignation.

Good news.

The world will be redeemed one barbecue at a time.

This is the season of end-of-work functions; the inexperienced get shitfaced and shagged, the rest endure the soggy blabbing of those they’ve come to despise and otherwise perpetually complain about internally: your colleagues.

I have a suggestion.

It’s also the season of broader family gatherings that occur before Christmas Day itself. Where you drop the children off at the ex’s to fulfill miserly custody agreements, whether childcare was paid or not. Births and illnesses to console or chew over. Moments of tension, regret, pathetic micro-management and perseverance.

Just a tiny suggestion.

Then of course there’s those final Trust and NGO and PTA and Board of Trustee and Daycare functions, for a final drinks and a cupcake. Impatience and regret at the smallness of efforts, of things half-done, half-baked, or plain old undone.

It’s considered rude, even.

Finally, Christmas Day. The forced formality, the dull stress of expectation, bonhomie and melancholy over those who have died, playing stupid games we think we can still play, occasional drunken outbursts.

It’s this: talk politics.

Talk it endlessly. Let the old Prime Minister be your opening, and the floodgates of frustration will simply pour out of everyone. I see it around me already, hugely.

It;s hard to stop once they start. The season we are in allows people to think politically. Make sure you bring good facts to bear. If you’re really lucky, keep your cool as the National supporters lose it in grief and everyone else sees how rational and calm the left really are (!)

This season, at the end of Key and the end of 2016, is a great time to change hearts, minds, and votes. We can recruit to the 2017 cause. Just add sauce.

Of all the earthquakes we could possibly have endured, the year is ending here with one of the politically biggest of them all. The left won a by-election, and the rightist government cracked wide open without any of Labour and Greens’ careful democratic release-valves.

Get talking. Get drinking and talking. Have confidence and fun in your arguments. This kind of moment doesn’t come around very often in a parliamentary term.

84 comments on “Barbecue season ”

  1. Jenny Kirk 1

    Good idea, Advantage.
    And at the same time, remind people that Winnie cannot be trusted – if his polling rises, he’ll have some leverage with the Nats to get a real top position ….. and he’ll go with them, to get that.

    Oh, and if you want a few pointers on what to say – just visit Labour’s Vision – its set out very clearly – basic stuff, easy to remember. http://www.labour.org.nz/vision

    We’ll build thousands of affordable homes and crack down on foreign speculators.
    We’ll back our businesses to build a stronger economy that delivers decent work and higher wages.
    We’ll invest in our regions, so there are jobs and opportunities.
    We’ll care for the environment so we can all enjoy it, now and in the future.
    We’ll fix the health system by turning National’s years of underfunding around.
    We’ll rebuild world-class schools that help every Kiwi kid dream big and succeed.
    New Zealand needs new leadership and a new direction. Labour will do this.

    • Gosman 1.1

      We’ll raise taxes on you all because ultimately we don’t trust you to spend or invest money in the way we think you should.

      • roy cartland 1.1.1

        No, that’s where you’re mistaken. Only raise taxes on those who avoid them most, pay them least and waste those ‘earnings’ on destructive, pointless crap for themselves.

        • Gosman 1.1.1.1

          The trouble is you can’t collect taxes from these people already so what makes you think raising taxes on them will suddenly make them cough up?

          • roy cartland 1.1.1.1.1

            Yes, good point – then start collecting taxes from them by putting in a functioning system and people to do so. Nothing “can’t” be done, as you’d know.

            • Gosman 1.1.1.1.1.1

              I’m all for closing tax loopholes. They trouble is the left doesn’t really want to close loopholes because they can’t help trying to use the tax system as a means to try and influence people to do things they think will benefit society. What they generally fail to understand is by doing this they just allow wealthy people to employ clever people to help them exploit those ‘incentives’ to avoid paying tax.

              • roy cartland

                “doesn’t really want to close loopholes” isn’t quite accurate, is it? Who wouldn’t want that except for those that benefit from them directly?

                “as a means to try and influence people to do things they think will benefit society”
                No, I think more of a means to stop people doing things that will negatively impact on society (environment, etc). It’s not the same thing.

              • Draco T Bastard

                What a load of bollocks.

                It’s the RWNJs that aren’t closing the loopholes
                It’s the RWNJs that are trying very hard to turn NZ into an international tax haven
                It’s the RWNJs that tell the electorate that it’s National that knows how to spend their money – in subsidies to massive multi-national corporations
                It’s the RWNJs that insist that local councils and people can’t have a say in how their city and environment is looked after – through removal of democracy
                It’s the RWNJs that put in place perverse tax incentives – such as no CGT and zero tax on offshore trusts

                • David C

                  What a load of bollocks.

                  It was Labour that had the trust tax rate and top personal rate set so far apart. That wasnt a loophole, you could drive a bus thru that hole.

                  Oh and how has that Lefty Auckland council done looking after housing for 1/3 of the country? could it be a bigger democratic fuckup?

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Really reaching there aren’t you?

                    National set the business tax rate to 5% below the top personal tax rate so that hole still exists.

                    • David C

                      You need to be reaching for some financial literacy.

                      How do you get money out of the business to spend it?
                      That is assuming you just set up a company to launder your salary thru and own your rental house?

                      Fuckwit.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      How do you get money out of the business to spend it?

                      Why don’t you ask the richest people in NZ who don’t pay the top tax rate to the tune of some $7 billion per year?

                    • David C

                      Well Draco T Fuckwit you are the one who is purporting there is a hole in our tax system, explain away.
                      How does anyone take advantage of the 5% gap between company and personal tax rates?

                    • adam

                      Gee David C you realise being vulgar and abusive makes you look just a little silly?

                      Coincidentally, what you are discussing as there is first policy release by The Opportunity Party. A good policy from them by the way.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      How does anyone take advantage of the 5% gap between company and personal tax rates?

                      Well, I don’t know the full ins and outs of it but mayhap this search will help you.

                      Here’s the thing. If the difference between trust rates and the personal tax rate was used to avoid taxes then the difference in company and personal rates will be being used now for the same purpose.

                      Thing is, we know that rich people use complicated business structures to minimise the tax that they pay. We know that they use the difference in tax rates to achieve that as well as other tools. And we know that that tax avoidance is around $7 billion per year. Nothing that this government has done has addressed that ongoing theft.

      • UncookedSelachimorpha 1.1.2

        “We’ll raise taxes on you all* because ultimately we don’t trust you to spend or invest money in the way we think you should.”

        * If ‘you all’ in this case is the top 10% of the wealth distribution, then what a fantastic suggestion!! Those people hold over half of the nation’s wealth, and can and should contribute much more. No, I don’t trust these people to act in the interests of society, remember – the rich are proven to be very selfish. The very last people you would want to be grabbing hold of everything.

      • left_forward 1.1.3

        Raise taxes so that you can more fairly share in the collective task of supporting the society that you depend on to earn money

  2. Gosman 2

    Yeah good luck with that. Just don’t be surprised when people start backing away from you as soon as you approach. I love the fact you think people on the left can remain rational and calm. I don’t think many lefties could last more than 5 minutes before accusing the current government of trying to screw poor people for the benefit of fat cat wealthy foreigners.

    • infused 2.1

      Yep. Last thing I do these days is engage the other side on politics. As soon as they reach the edge of their knowledge, spluttering and rage strarts.

  3. BM 3

    Yeah and make sure the word neoliberalism is used at least 5 x per minute of conversation and endlessly go on about the 1980’s and how NZ was destroyed by Douglas and how we’re paying the price and we have to go back to the 1970’s when everything was so glorious and true.

    You’ll be the life of the party.

    • mac1 3.1

      Heh I was at a BBQ on Monday night and got the full “they both do it, neo-libs, Labour started it in 1984 etc etc etc.”

      All you need to say is that was 32 years ago, for heaven’s sake, one and a half generations have been born since then but the one line that seemed to get through was the “you have to learn to let it go after thirty years”.

      Then we had a good discussion on the relative merits of spending money on solar hot water systems, solar power or replacement of the wet-back destructor with a new clean burning small fire.

      In our quake torn bit of NZ, BBQs are a vital bit of emergency equipment, too.

      They are also a place where quake experiences can be shared.

      Bit like politics really………..

      • Siobhan 3.1.1

        So once a political-economic movement has been around long enough it achieves a status of being somehow..invisible, unmentionable..or what?? Neo Liberalism was then..and it’s ‘now’, so how does ‘not mentioning it’ help the situation??

        It would be like trying to overthrow the Roman Empire but having some nob blathering on about how the Roman Empire was started 32 years ago, so get over it.

        Though as it happens we don’t mention the dirty word at Xmas…we mention the other dirty word, ‘capital Gains tax’ and that generally clears the room.
        Though usually we keep the political conversation positive, like how we can all contribute to building communities, and sorting out Health and Education and the environment..but that lasts about 30 minutes before they all start up on how much they think they can sell their current ‘family home’ for.

        Its a fricken obsession any time you get two or more NZers together in a room..

        • BM 3.1.1.1

          Fairly static stuff back in the days of Rome.

          Step back and actually take in how much has happened in the past 30 years, how people think, how they do things, what they’ve been exposed to knowledge wise.

          30 years ago may as well be a 1000 years ago.

          • Siobhan 3.1.1.1.1

            It’s a classic mistake to think that just because we have an i-phone and a TV the size of the Sistine chapel, or an electric car and our socks are made out of bamboo fibre, and you’re now a ‘contractor’ who can order a Latte, and your house is worth half a mil…. or you’re so poor at 35 years of age you’ve had to move home with the folks…that we have somehow evolved or changed over the last 30 years.

            We’re still little hairy land crabs who need a warm community to thrive and some greater power to reach out a helping hand when we fall.

            Neo-Liberal (ha!!) Government is not delivering that to the same extent as they are incrementally destroying our way of life.

          • mac1 3.1.1.1.2

            History tells us of our mistakes. Empires crashed because they outran and misused their resources. All that changes is that the threats change, Thirty years ago from global destruction by nuclear war, to ……. well, global destruction by other means.

            As for what we have been exposed to knowledge wise? Like disease, many of us have been peculiarly unaffected by exposure to knowledge- skin contact only, no lasting effects, seem to have got away with it.

        • mac1 3.1.1.2

          The pain of the argument is in the rehashing of things that happened thirty two years ago.

          You are right. We should be talking about what is happening now, including the elements of neo-liberalism that are still with us. Though my political discourse tends to focus on actual problems occurring now.

          Such as the freeze on social services that has taken place over the last eight years and is still being compounded in our community as a local drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre has to cut its programmes by up to half and fund what is left by closing a shelter, the shortfall having to be made up by an overstretched voluntary agency.

          Such as the dire local rental accommodation situation.

          Such as the low wage economy particular to this region.

          So, banging on about 1984 by half-pissed barbequeans tends to miss the point which I understand you are making.

          Your analogy with the Roman Empire is apt. We still live in an empire which is run by an elite, as it has been for centuries. Sometimes the Emperor is benign, sometimes he is not. Sometimes he is deposed, sometimes dynasties occur.

          “Max for PM” I read this week!

          • alwyn 3.1.1.2.1

            Only 32 years ago?
            I, and my friends, must be a bit older than you.
            I still get people whose only topic of conversation remains how they marched in protest about the Vietnam war and how they can still recite the chants of the time. The ones that started “hey, hey LBJ etc.”
            It was the great moment in their lives and it is as if nothing significant ever happened to them again.
            There are others for whom the be-all and end-all of their life was marching up and down Molesworth Street in 1981.
            Get over it.

            • mac1 3.1.1.2.1.1

              Alwyn, there are some momentous times in our lives which change and inform our thinking and behaviour.

              In 1968, at the age of 19, I was required by the government to register for military service or to register alternatively, as a conscientious objector.

              It was the time of the Vietnam War. I did more than march. I did not call out slogans, I acted. That decision in 1968 still reunites with me today, and now as a Quaker I try to live the peace testimony which 1968 and the Vietnam War drew me towards.

              In 1981, I was opposed to the Rugby Tour. And marched. Racism and bigotry are still with us, and the old concerns are still with us.

              At least, in 1981, as a 32 year old, I knew where I stood, as I knew in 1968 that our involvement in Vietnam was wrong; as was in the same year our threatened involvement in the global network of war-making that the Omega VLF transmitting station would have tied us into.

              The be-all and end-all? Quite possibly for our planet, as the nuclear MADness continued.

              Now, they are memories of times which drew NZers out of their comfort zones, and complacency, and gave us a history and a comfort that concerted action can bring about change.

              Change which is still required two generations forward.

              I am an historian enough to know that we are bound to repeat our mistakes if we do nothing, stay ignorant and disengaged.

              • alwyn

                I have no objection to people remembering these things. However the point I made was that bit that said “whose only topic of conversation remains how they marched in protest”.

                It is an exaggeration of course but it still appears to be the only thing that they really seem to remember.

                At least you were, unlike the Australian conscripts, never in any danger of being sent to Vietnam if you had served. (I am assuming that you did take the route of conscientious objection).

                The PM of the time was totally opposed to the Vietnam involvement. He did as little as he could with the NZ engagement without really pissing off the US. Indeed I have been told he actively encouraged the demonstrations so he could tell the US Government that he couldn’t possibly do any more without losing an election to a party that would probably recognise the Viet Cong as the South Vietnam Government.
                The only New Zealand forces who went to Vietnam were those who specifically joined the army in order to go.

                • mac1

                  “At least you were, unlike the Australian conscripts, never in any danger of being sent to Vietnam…”

                  I assure you, alwyn, that was not evident at the time (I had read “We Shall Not Cease” at the time.) Nor did it matter. The issue was that we were involved in an illegal, immoral and unjustifiable war.

                  That Holyoake was opposed, as you say, was not honoured by his actions. “Guns for butter” was his motto. Yes, he sent as few as he could, as I understand it.

                  But, I believe that the Vietnamese are very generous to us in their forgiveness. They were the ones bombed, shelled and machine-gunned, napalmed and deforested with Agent Orange.

                  We move on, but we remember.

                • adam

                  I love reading your rewriting of history alwyn, so very funny. Are you apply for a job at the the ministry of truth?

                  You forget compulsory military service, and the army or jail option which was all the rage in the late 60’s. Oh well, better luck next time.

                  • alwyn

                    I certainly didn’t forget any of it. I was very grateful that my birthday didn’t come up and so I didn’t have to go and do CMT.

                    However what I said was the New Zealand didn’t send ANY conscripts to Vietnam. You surely don’t think they did? Are you really that confused?

                    Australia on the other hand did send their conscripts to that crazy war.

                    • adam

                      As you have not read any history books, or even official histories, little point arguing with you. So here the offer.

                      Come back in a month or so when you have read some in depth analysis of how our military worked during that period, or how our political masters at the time worked, and we will take it up again.

                    • alwyn

                      In other words everything I said was absolutely accurate and you can’t bring yourself to admit it?
                      You don’t need to formally apologise. That is not the normal mode of operation on this site.

                    • adam

                      Oh do get over yourself alwyn. I always wonder what people who had to be right in a argument looked like. Thanks for the public display.

                      The justice system offered people the option server in Vietnam or go to jail. A substantial number of vet’s I’ve engage with, and read about fall into this category.

                      In many cases Compulsory Military Service led to a tour in Vietnam, indeed, some of my parents friends were co-oped to Vietnam this way, and many more I have read about had the same thing happen.

                      As I said before, you need to read some more about how the military worked, and how politics of the day operated. You reflection from your memory are dogie at best, as you are just spinning a piss poor revisionist line.

                    • alwyn

                      You are claiming that “The justice system offered people the option server in Vietnam or go to jail”
                      That is simply untrue.

                      From Wikipedia
                      “Although New Zealand sent troops to the Vietnam war, all who served there were full-time professional volunteer soldiers. Conscripts were not sent, unlike Australians or Americans.”
                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compulsory_military_training_in_New_Zealand

                      Perhaps you would care to tell us the country in which your parents friends were living at the time?
                      Australia? Yes they sent conscripts.
                      USA? Yes they sent conscripts.
                      New Zealand never did.

                      Now, if you cannot produce any evidence to show that Wiki link is wrong I suggest you ask you parents, or their friends, to provide something to back up your claim.

                      As for your line “I always wonder what people who had to be right in a argument looked like. Thanks for the public display”
                      It is very easy to look like this when, like me in this matter, I AM right.

                    • adam

                      Like I said there are New Zealand history books that back up what I say, I invite you to read them here is a link

                      https://www.abebooks.com/books/ANZ/?&cm_mmc=ggl-_-AU_AbeBooks_Brand-_-Website%20Misspell%20esvg_3747233-_-books%20abe.com

                      so you can buy some. Roberto Rabel, New Zealand and the Vietnam War: Politics and diplomacy, Auckland University Press, Auckland, 2005. Is a good, broad overview.

                      Many many more. Personal diaries are good, many are out of print.

                      Have you ever talked to any veterans? I’m guessing not with your attitude.

                      Again alwyn, stop with the revisionist lines you are spinning, and using wikipedia to back that up, is just well I have no words, except maybe lazy.

      • BM 3.1.2

        A wetback destructor? is that what you call those little fires you see sometimes in the kitchens of older places?

        • mac1 3.1.2.1

          BM, exactly the one. Very useful at burning scrap wood, and heating hot water and can also cook a meal as I often do with a long simmering soup or stew. However they can also add to the pollution that is undoubtedly part of our little town’s air scape.

  4. Tory 4

    I see The Standards left comrades over at TDB have kicked this off (more conspiracy theories than vision) with one true nut bag claiming NASA is exerting “mind control techniques” over NZ.

    • BM 4.1

      The left does seem to be a magnet for crazies, a very powerful magnet.

      • fender 4.1.1

        Is that why you have taken up residence here..

        • greywarshark 4.1.1.1

          fender
          Great riposte.

        • greywarshark 4.1.1.2

          I like a good return jab. This is one of my favourites from Alien. (Vasquez is a woman with big biceps.)

          Private Hudson: Hey Vasquez, have you ever been mistaken for a man?
          Private Vasquez: No. Have you?

          Private Vasquez: You always were an asshole, Gorman!
          Almost Gosman, what a coincidence only an rs away.

        • BM 4.1.1.3

          Yes, I feel right at home,

    • Gosman 4.2

      Yes I laughed when I read here an article arguing that the left doesn’t engage in fake news. It’s as if The Standard author wasn’t aware The Daily Blog existed.

  5. Gosman 5

    The extremely funny thing is that because this has elicited comments of glee from right leaning individuals I expect someone to post that we are in fact extremely worried that lefties will be haranguing their friends and relatives over summer about how great Labour is and how bad National has been. Yes I’m terrified that people doing this will soon be regarded as social pariahs by most moderately inclined individuals. Don’t do it!!!

    • I actually think the left (and yes, I include myself in that royal ‘the’) could have a good show of winning that one if it weren’t for one stark detail: the dreary fact of around, oh how do I say it, *half or so* of the Labour caucus. I believe Trotsky once mockingly referred at a conference to a then-obscure Josef Stalin as ‘our most outstanding nonentity’. There’d be even more contenders for that title in the Labour caucus than there are pretenders to Key’s crooked crown in National’s (there I include those running now, and those waiting to run against whoever wins). I want National taken down, but because I want it seriously, I can’t rate many of Labour’s outstanding nonentities as being equipped for that battle.

      • alwyn 5.1.1

        Be careful.
        Trotsky ended up with an ice pick in the ear thanks to that “nonentity”.

        • Cemetery Jones 5.1.1.1

          Ain’t that the point? They could do for Cunliffe to gain the heights of a shrinking dung heap, but against Brash they barely scraped through and against Key they have failed again and again.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 5.2

      Gosman – you might be reducing the entire ‘left / progressive’ vs ‘right / backward’ debate to simply ‘Labour Party’ vs ‘National Party’. There is a lot more to it than that! A lot of progressives are not strongly Labour.

      • Gosman 5.2.1

        I’d you want to try and avoid discussing Labour versus National with non political people good luck.

        • UncookedSelachimorpha 5.2.1.1

          But he seems happy with my satirical equivalence of “right” and “backward”.

          So how is it going in the world of Backwards politics today? Elected a new leader yet?

          • alwyn 5.2.1.1.1

            Those on the right are of course very dextrous.
            They are opposed to the sinister activities the lefties indulge in.

    • adam 5.3

      Must say I’m over you labeling ‘the left’ Gossy, apart from being rude, and making yourself look ill educated and uninformed. Mind you toilet paper crisis, and other lies from you are common.

      And then what can you expect from someone who put Pinochet on a pedestal, economically.

  6. greywarshark 6

    9.20 a.m. and the RWs crawl out into the open sunny spot created by this post.
    Gosman Tory BM Infused so far up to No. 5. Except for the leader, Jenny Kirk, so it’s a good sign that the first is a Labour activist.

    I add something from the TOP party’s first policy announcement – on tax cuts.
    It is a para that most would agree with, intelligent, informed, practical and sounds promising. I suggest you go and look for yourselves for the rest.

    The current tax regime favours owners of capital and unjustly burdens wage earners. This is not only inequitable, it results in poor utilisation of capital and lower than necessary income and employment.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 6.1

      Haven’t read it properly yet, but sounding good. Great to hear something other than TINA.

      Here is the link:
      http://www.top.org.nz/top1

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 6.2

      Having had a look – overall a good policy compared to the status quo (moves the tax burden towards the rich).

      TOP have chosen to move the tax burden, rather than collect additional tax. This is much better than leaving the burden on the poor, but there is no good reason not to actually collect more tax if it is helpful to society. But any move in a better direction is great – and they do not want to scare people I expect.

      • greywarshark 6.2.1

        Uncooked S….
        I think you are spot on with how people will react. And yeah good to get something new in the air that sounds doable and possibly effective and fairer.

  7. Heather Grimwood 7

    Goodness me! what a list of contributions from obviously shaken/shaking contributors!

  8. greywarshark 8

    Image – great slabs of meat on the barbecue. Are these the best cuts that the butchers could shape for HRH. He looks puzzled at this evidence of our high culinary aspirations. He doesn’t realise it is an analogy for the National Party politicians and their voters. Great slabs of meat with little understanding of finesse.

    Google is commemorating 340 years since the calculation of the speed of light.
    That was a high point in cleverness then. It has been downhill since and now slabs of meat take us back to our primitive beginnings, except we have elaborated on our environment, clothing, buildings, fighting etc since then.

  9. Gosman 9

    in relation to keeping calm and rational – I’m currently having a discussion on FB with a lefty raving on how John Key stepping down means he won’t be able to be tried for Treason. Real rational and calm that one 🙂

    • roy cartland 9.1

      Couldn’t anyone be tried for treason for any reason, given that’s it’s just a human concept? Seems like you’re both confusing likelihood with a more abstract philosophical hypothesis. But agreed, sounds like a boring discussion.

      • Gosman 9.1.1

        It stopped after he posted a huge shred of a thought regurgitation about how we don’t really live in a democracy. I just replied tl;dr. Lefties really are their own worst enemy.

  10. b waghorn 10

    how to stump a key lover 101 , when they start burbling on about what a great leader he was , ask them what he achieved, silence will follow.

  11. North 11

    Hilarious how the rightist trolls are out in force. Studied venting on TS to conceal that they’re shitting themselves. What will they do now? All dressed up with nowhere to go, their plastic PM doll having bailed after less PM time than Helen Clark.

    Deep down they know that Double Dipton English is no change, the viperish Collins is a nightmare, and that Coleman’s an arrogant cold fish. Monday next is only the beginning of the ugliest internecine war with DP turned inwards. Let them bleed throughout.

    Meanwhile Grande-Dame-Boag is inconsolable.

    • Gosman 11.1

      And snap…

      • framu 11.1.1

        i see the pattern now

        “any comment deemed contrary to the dogma of the cult will be considered the ravings of a lunatic”

        will there be village denunciations complete with young nats dishing out beatings with a little blue book?

  12. Stunned Mullet 12

    “i see the pattern now

    any comment deemed contrary to the dogma of the cult will be considered the ravings of a lunatic”

    Goodness me it’s taken you a while to work out how blogs work.

  13. Jenny Kirk 13

    I see the Nats, and the Herald, are ” inviting Kiwis to thank John Key for his 10 years leading the party and eight years’ service as Prime Minister, by signing an e-card.”

    My first reaction : you gotta be joking ! ……. and it hasn’t changed.

  14. Antoninina 14

    Thanks advantage for
    your initial comments. Very interesting responses.

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