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Daily Review 09/02/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 pm, February 9th, 2016 - 45 comments
Categories: uncategorized - Tags:

David Cameron arrested with pig

Daily review is also your post.

This provides Standardistas the opportunity to review events of the day.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Don’t forget to be kind to each other …

45 comments on “Daily Review 09/02/2016”

  1. Paul 1

    Walk up Queen Street and see how many people are begging.
    Neoliberalism is failing a lot of people.

  2. weka 2

    The more we dig the more it becomes obvious that history is not how it’s been taught to us. I blame the patriarchy 🙂

    The remains of 14 women believed to be of high status and importance have been found at Stonehenge, the iconic prehistoric monument in Wiltshire, England.

    The discovery, along with other finds, supports the theory that Stonehenge functioned, at least for part of its long history, as a cremation cemetery for leaders and other noteworthy individuals, according to a report published in the latest issue of British Archaeology.

    During the recent excavation, more women than men were found buried at Stonehenge, a fact that could change its present image.

    “In almost every depiction of Stonehenge by artists and TV re-enactors we see lots of men, a man in charge, and few or no women,” archaeologist Mike Pitts, who is the editor of British Archaeology and the author of the book “Hengeworld,” told Discovery News.

    “The archaeology now shows that as far as the burials go, women were as prominent there as men. This contrasts with the earlier burial mounds, where men seem to be more prominent.”


    • Colonial Viper 2.1

      Again, the age of magic and mysticism brought with it a far finer understanding of the energies of both nature and of human beings. Modern rational intellectualism cannot deal with that strange shit; it short circuits the narrow modernised brain.

  3. Whateva next? 3

    Did I hear Key akshully say…”and there’s the small issue of the flag referendum in March” towards the end of his speech in the house today? I can’t bear to watch it again as he was Mr.Shoutey ++++, well, it’s a lot of money to throw at a “small issue”.
    Another question,why do we keep throwing money at a Saudi business man? Did he donate to National at some point? Is it hush money? Cannot for the life of me think of any other reason

  4. ianmac 4

    To Weka: And later in Ireland women featured.
    I was reading about Ireland in 3-4 centuries AD where women could hold any office including being elected King in one or other of the 4 Kingdoms and were free to vote, free to be lawyers and equal. Crimes were usually treated with non violence or punishment but a system of restitution mostly the outcome.
    Then the influence of the Roman Catholic Church seeped in and punishment, imprisonment, torture, capital punishment gradually destroyed a society that had been way ahead of its time.

    • weka 4.1

      Lots of interesting things to learn from those cultures (and ones closer to home).

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.1

        The Celts of the day had strong beliefs in magic, mysticism and spirituality.

        Modern day intellectual rationalists can’t cope with that strange shit.

        • DoublePlusGood

          Yes, we can. Strange shit is great. We just don’t base important things like medical treatment on them.

          • Colonial Viper

            What do you anchor that faith-based comment on, given the real world of highly monied, corporate run, for shareholder profit medical research, that is?

            Do you think our society is healthier now with an ethos of rationalism, materialism and commercialism rather than say, ancient celtic belief systems where the energies of humans and nature interact in harmony and co-operation?

          • weka

            “We just don’t base important things like medical treatment on them.”

            Good for you. Just don’t try and limit my access to health care on the basis of your personal world view.

            • DoublePlusGood

              Regulators have a responsibility to protect people from fraudulent practices. Any restrictions on access to a given treatment would be on the grounds that it caused harm directly or caused harm by diverting people away from treatment that actually does work.
              Referring to CV’s comment – ‘fraudulent practices’ includes fraudulent practices in evidence-based medicine, as well fraudulent practices in traditional health practices not attempting to have any basis in evidence, and straight-up quackery as well.

              And CV – I think the average life expectancy now pushing 70+ instead of being in the 20s or 30s speaks to the power of evidence-based practices developing new treatments over many centuries, and in particular the approach to medicine in the last century. Evidential medicine finds out what works, and what doesn’t.
              This does not preclude there being vast room in medicine for massive fraud and systematic failings. Additionally, the quality of societal wellbeing is based on far more things than just health care – you noted materialism and commercialism, well, look there for the causes of the malaise you are referring to.
              Rationalism is just a term for an intelligent approach to problem solvent – and it can be used to consider solutions to the problems you are alluding to as well.

              • weka

                sorry mate, but I think you are talking from a place of ignorance there. Fair enough you believe what you believe, but that kind of attitude does prevent people from getting good healthcare.

                a few points,

                Even the mainstream medical system mocks the extreme to which the concept of evidence based medicine has been taken.

                Parachute use to prevent death and major trauma related to gravitational challenge: systematic review of randomised controlled trials

                http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC300808/ (originally published in the British Medical Journal).

                On a more serious note,

                Evidence based medicine (EBM) should form the foundation of effective clinical decision making; however, growing unrest—and an awful lot of criticism—suggests the evidence bit of EBM is increasingly part of the problem, and not the solution.

                Concerns with quality and rigour in research are leading to a lack of trust in the production, publication, and utilisation of evidence. Des Spence, writing in The BMJ, thinks the situation is so bad that, “Evidence based medicine is broken,” and when an official from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also reports, “The clinical trial system is broken and it’s getting worse,” you have to acknowledge that there might be problems with the evidence base.


                EBM is not something that has to be solely determined by Randomised Controlled Trials, or the medical research elite. There are many ways of assessing efficacy, including empirically based methods that are evidence based but wouldn’t fit with your ideology. But get this, GPs use them all the time. Consider off label prescribing, or the GPs who understand that their patients are better off with kindness and support.

                ‘Quackery’ is when people intentionally and knowingly mislead people with regards to their health or treatment. The numbers of people that do this is actually quite small. But I suspect that what you really mean is the alternative pracitioners who practice health care that you disapprove of because mainstream science hasn’t figured out how to assess it yet. This is some of the important health care that people miss out on when they are dependent on people with attitudes such as yourself. Not only is this failing based on willful ignorance, but it’s illogical by science’s own methodologies and concepts.

                For instance, practices like herbal medicine or acupuncuture have been in use successfully for thousands of years and yet there have been times fairly recently when both have been damned by the people who believe that EBM is the same as RCTs. THe very large irony there is that medical people who think EBM is the be all and end all are often incredibly ignorant about not only the efficacy of those methods but of the research that now supports them.

                “Evidential medicine finds out what works, and what doesn’t.”

                Read the above links. I think you will be surprised at the big flaws in that argument.

                “or caused harm by diverting people away from treatment that actually does work.”

                This is a red herring. The Ministry of Health surveys use of complemetary and alternative medicine in NZ (CAM), and finds that the percentage of people that use alternative practitioners as their main go to for health and medical treatment is very small. Further, that of the people that do use CAM, by far the marjority of them do so having already consulted a mainstream doctor. Alternative practitioners confirm this (ie most of their clients have already tried conventional medicine). It’s not a bad leap to surmise that people seek out CAM because conventional medicine has failed them. Or because conventional medicine has intolerable or unwarranted side effects. Many people use CAM alongside conventional medicine.

                I think the average life expectancy now pushing 70+ instead of being in the 20s or 30s speaks to the power of evidence-based practices developing new treatments over many centuries, and in particular the approach to medicine in the last century.

                Nope. The bigger part of increased longevity is due to increases in standard of living. Medicine does also keep people alive longer, but the advantages are not as clear cut as you make out because much of the late age deaths that are being postponed by medicine are also being created by modern living (eg heart disease, diabetes related illness and probably cancer).

                (Btw, it’s a myth that pre-modern medicine most people only lived into their 20s and 30s. High infant mortality brought down the average life expectancy across populations, but many people lived a lot longer than 30.)

                Where CAM comes into its own is bringing relief to people with chronic illness, largely because it is better suited to dealing with this than conventional medicine. It’s for this reason that I made the original comment to you. If you seek to deny people access to CAM on the basis that it hasn’t met some arbitrary standard that is already corrupted, then you are doing far more damage than any parts of CAM that are untested (and I do believe there are some dodgy things out there too).

                • DoublePlusGood

                  Please do not consider me some unchanging monolith of ignorance. I am a scientist, and with that comes a responsibility to evaluate new ideas, test them, think about them critically, and try to solve problems. And yes, I am aware scientists have a propensity to ignore all of that – I get to come across plenty of atrocious science.

                  To paraphrase Minchin, “You know what we called alternative medicine that’s been proven to work? Medicine”.
                  Tonnes of research is done on complementary and alternative medicine. That which works gets picked up by medicine and incorporated into its practice, though indeed slower than it should in many instances, as you relate.

                  I am well aware of shortcomings in evidence-based medicine, and am well aware of using empyrical evidence also. That doesn’t mean we should throw out reason. Not at all, we should be using rational, reasoned approaches to examine the reasons for the failings in the current system and develop improved approaches.

                  “‘Quackery’ is when people intentionally and knowingly mislead people with regards to their health or treatment. The numbers of people that do this is actually quite small.”
                  Nonsense – just take a look at the supplement industry alone. It’s all “supports joint health” this and “assists with digestion” that, because they can’t make any actual claims, because they can’t actually prove anything that they are selling actually works. At best they’ll have some statement of irrelevant crap along the lines of “verisatol extracted from the skin of the avocado lowered taurine by 20% in laboratory studies”

                  “Nope. The bigger part of increased longevity is due to increases in standard of living. Medicine does also keep people alive longer, but the advantages are not as clear cut as you make out because much of the late age deaths that are being postponed by medicine are also being created by modern living (eg heart disease, diabetes related illness and probably cancer).
                  (Btw, it’s a myth that pre-modern medicine most people only lived into their 20s and 30s. High infant mortality brought down the average life expectancy across populations, but many people lived a lot longer than 30.)”

                  Guess what lowered that high infant mortality? Sanitation. Medicine. It required an understanding of concepts of transmissible illness coming from contaminated water and other sources, something that required testing of ideas to understand – i.e. science. Further science allowed us to develop antibiotics and vaccines – the other key factor in reducing untimely deaths from illnesses like cholera, typhoid, TB, syphilis, and eradicating smallpox entirely.

                  That is why we have to take a scientific approach to problems, and evaluate evidence to determine whether a medical treatment, alternative or otherwise, is effective or not, or if it does more harm than good. An approach of allowing treatment where there is no evidence of its benefits and its detriments, where you are taking things on blind faith that something will work or not, is to negligently abrogate responsibility for the wellbeing of people. That, to me, is not acceptable.

  5. Macro 5

    You may or may not want to read this . But the window of opportunity to cut emissions is probably even smaller than we think. And we are in for rapid sea level rise in the not too distant future.
    The science is explained well in the link. Newly published work on the Ice sheets of Antarctica.

  6. ianmac 6

    Just watched most of The Daily Blog’s live stream with “Lisa Owen from TV3’s The Nation as she asks PR man Matthew Hooton, Metro Editor-at-large Simon Wilson, and AUT senior lecturer Ella Henry about the political year ahead.”
    Rather fun and good food for thought I thought.
    No idea if it is rebroadcast.

  7. Whispering Kate 7

    “No Name” was doing his usual rant in the House this afternoon – phew can he spew forth when he is cornered and bitchy – methinks he is feeling the heat right now and not coping. Why does he always come across like a spoilt bully who stamps his feet when he feels slighted. The man needs to get a grip and slow down. As I have said before the man is a tosser and not worthy of his position and I sense more people are starting to see the emperor has no clothes – a hollow man.

  8. arkie 8


    Dodgy stats underpin another subtle step towards a police state

  9. Macro 9

    From the blackboard outside the local and best hardware shop in the country* (always has a very pertinent and surprisingly non-establishment and pithy hand written comment on the issues of the day.) 🙂

    Prepare for a Tsunami of benefits flowing in from the TPPA

    *Really it is!
    You want a left handed floggle toggle – yep they have one out the back. You want that male or female?)

  10. pat 10


    “The Bank of Japan’s rates decision has prompted fears that after years of monetary easing, central banks have few avenues left to explore to encourage investment and boost growth.”

    • pat 10.1

      “We have bad news from Germany — industrial production at the eurozone’s powerhouse economy tumbled by 1.2% in December.

      That’s much worse than expected; economists had pencilled in a 0.4% rise in factory output. It suggest the slowdown in emerging markets is now hitting Europe, threatening its fragile recovery since the eurozone crisis.

      The fall was driven by a 2.6% slump in the manufacturing of investment goods, while energy production fell by 3% percent and consumer goods output fell 1.4%.

      ING economist Carsten Brzeski isn’t prone to exaggeration, but even he is alarmed:”

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        The world’s financial elite have spent too long gaming the markets at the cost of the real economy and real consumers. Now their games of pretend and extend are coming to a close and the landing with reality is going to be hard.

        • pat

          i believe so….but they are tucking their gains safely away (even if they pay a little for the privilege)

          “Yield is the interest rate on a bond. A high yield means a bond is riskier, while safe-haven assets yield less.

          Short-term German and Japanese bonds have been negative for a while, reflecting the fact that they’re a solid place to put your money (especially as there are negative interest rates in Japan and the eurozone).

          But for a 10-year bond to be negative? That shows investors are pricing in weak economic growth, and turmoil, for some time.”

          • Colonial Viper

            i believe so….but they are tucking their gains safely away (even if they pay a little for the privilege)

            It’s electronic numbers entered by keyboard in electronic accounts which exist only on electronic records.

            When it all goes wrong and it all gets deleted that “wealth” is finally going to be shown as the illusion that it is right now.

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