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Daily Review 18/01/2018

Written By: - Date published: 5:30 pm, January 18th, 2018 - 138 comments
Categories: Daily review - Tags:

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 …

138 comments on “Daily Review 18/01/2018 ”

  1. Anne 1

    The video included in this Guardian item speaks for itself:


  2. Muttonbird 2

    It’s been a pretty average day on the Standard and, as usual, the Trump arguments are at the centre of it.

    This guy’s treatment of the media makes Winston Peters look like a saint. He just passed a massive tax relief package for the rich. He destroyed the first green shoots of public health care in the US since forever. He has laid waste to solutions in Israel/Palestine. He’s needlessly inflaming the situation on the Korean peninsula. He’s unashamedly sexist and racist, and that’s a fact. And there’s way more.

    All these things should be anathema to people of the socially responsible left yet some here, authors included, have defended him today by attacking his critics.

    I’m ashamed to be a part of this community right now.

    • Sam 2.1

      Yeah. There’re reason why Trumo won, most Americans understand he’s a racist bigot because America is the home of racist bigots, I mean please don’t kid us if your trying to all of a sudden discover that America only became the second most racist bigoted country behind Europ. I mean congratulation for figuring out the secrete that only you and a select group of know all’s gatekeep. I mean wow, what a revelation.

      And please don’t talk about the U.S health system, there’s a reason why the U.S health system is the most expensive in the world. Because Obama care is a dog, which is two steps removed from Nixons Medicare bill…

      I just had to clear a few things up because you’ve got no argument. You muppets are just given these memes that you shit post with out even checking to see what the memes all about.

      You normies are just amazing.

      • BM 2.1.1

        Do you have a mental illness?

        [no idea what the point of that comment is, but it’s not the first time I’ve seen you having a go at someone using mental health slurs. Just stop. If I see it again I will ban – weka]

        • weka

          moderation note above, please respond.

        • BM

          Maybe you should moderate the guy for randomly abusing people.

          His behaviour is a bit odd, to say the least.

          • Sam

            Maybe you just piss me off which makes me unimpressed. And then I’m like role on BM. Because you online charlatan educators have no morals. People want to live a decent life with out judgment and that means a decent wage. But if they listen to people like you BM, well then they may aswell seek advice about living arrangements from John Key… What a joke.

          • weka

            I haven’t been reading Sam’s comments. The one above doesn’t seem particularly outside of what happens on TS, or what you do. If you have a problem with a comment, flag a moderator and point to specific things that are in breach of the Policy or otherwise causing a problem. Randomly suggesting that someone should be moderated doesn’t count. Nor does your personal opinion about behaviour being odd, you have to demonstrate something.

            • Grey Area

              Hi Weka. The rules say no “pointless personal attacks”. From one thread today:

              Sam 12.2.1
              18 January 2018 at 3:23 pm
              Hold it. Every one look at BM becoming a stable genius. How amazing it is the house prices will go up. Your a real fucking genius you know that BM… Amazing…

              18 January 2018 at 3:56 pm
              Nah. It’s like BM is reading from a script or something… Like he’s given these messages to say with out even understanding the words that are coming of his keyboard and when ever he goes off script he just comes across as a Nigerian con artist. He’s worthless.

              18 January 2018 at 3:51 pm
              We’ve already had BMs hysteria over drug testing state houses, and not even been unfit for habitation. Now BMs so thick in the head he dosnt even understand that he’s pushing a Ponzi scam. He’s a totally con.

              18 January 2018 at 4:48 pm
              If you think all rentals and tenants are the same then you’re insane… Because when BM assumes that all tenants and rentals are the same it’s actually mathematically impossible for BM to derive a supply curve…
              I mean… Fuck me… This is why I don’t educate flaky virtue signallers.

              Calling someone “a real fucking genius”, “worthless”, “thick in the head”, “totally con,” and “insane” sound like pointless personal attacks to me.

              (As do referring to other posters as “normies” and “muppets”).

              • Sam

                BM is a factory for propaganda. Just like commercials are literally the science of mind control. It sounds extremely ridiculous but it is something that is studied extensively. Propaganda is weird because you really don’t associate the harmless everyday thing as an EVIL tool.

                Pepe the Frog, Kekistan, Trickle down effect, slut shaming, welfare shaming, minority shaming, memes dedicated to ridicule to whoever uses them. Now I hear about them being considered as white supremacist symbols? I mean, they are, and verifiably so, just from a casual glance through any of the Facebook/anime groups and white supremacist rallies. It’s stupid, and nobody will dispute that, but the Alt-right has made those into rallying symbols for their racist ideologies. You just have to view any of Kiwiblog or Whale oil to understand this kiwi style.

                So now I’m like, have you got a problem with me you need to sort out? You’ll notice a huge difference in intellectual defence, between me and others. Others think they’re adults but really the right whinge like babies the most. That’s all they are, stuck with out a clue, that’s another feature of right wing ideology… The humble question mark?

                How I answer those questions are two fold. First I tell them how they’re screwing up, then I tell them how not to screw up.

                And there’s a third. After the two step process then I just casually not give a fuck.

                Complaining that BM is being unfairly trolled is like whining that nobody likes your sweet new Buddhist Manji tattoo. It may have been perfectly innocent once upon a time, but now is not that time.

                [“And there’s a third. After the two step process then I just casually not give a fuck.” What you will find is that once a moderator gets involved, your own views on how things should be become much less important. I will be looking at whether your style of commenting here is causing problems for the site. You might not give a fuck, I do, in part because I care about the community, but also because people who flame cause more work for moderators and in the end their political debate and action isn’t usually worth that. – weka]

                • Grey Area

                  I’m not complaining about BM bring unfairly trolled I’m complaining about your personal abuse. Can you make your points without it please.

                  • Sam

                    BM and I have actually been around the supply and demand merry go round. I’m actually surprised no one has the intellectually capacity or educational background to spot these charlatans. BM is like the uncle that no one suspects shouldn’t be allowed with kids alone… And every one here is like. Oh no it’s fine…

                • weka

                  moderator note for you to read and acknowledge.

                    • weka

                      I don’t know what that means. Please don’t waste my moderator time.

                    • Sam

                      I’m no ones bitch

                      [that’s nice for you, but I still don’t know what you are on about and in the absence of a clear acknowledgement of the moderation note and offering clear communication, I’m going to give you an educational ban for wasting my moderator time. I suggest reading the Policy and asking about anything you are not clear about. 3 days, back on Monday – weka]

              • weka

                Grey, thanks. If you want me to look at a moderator you have to put links (the bit in the Policy about not wasting moderator time is there to reduce the amount of time moderators spend on moderating. The time needed to follow patterns of behaviour is significant, so if commenters want something addressed it’s way more likely to happen if you do the leg work for me. In the time it would take for me to find those quotes in context I could put up a post).

                Calling someone “a real fucking genius”, “worthless”, “thick in the head”, “totally con,” and “insane” sound like pointless personal attacks to me.

                It depends. If someone is making a political point they can often (not always) get away with being rude. Pointless abuse would be attacking someone with no political content in a comment. What I would be looking at is whether he is winding people up and that’s disrupting the conversation (aka flaming).

                I’ll keep an eye out for Sam’s comments from now on.

                • Grey Area

                  Thanks Weka for responding and clarifying the moderation process and I understand the links thing. Will do next time.

                  I recognise that a lot of us can on occasions be rude especially in the heat of debate. At times I get a bit loose with terms like assh*le, w*anker, moron, d*ckhead etc when responding in my own head to various posters (and in other situations) but try not to use them in posts.

                  Some people just seem to be naturally nasty. In Sam’s case the abuse in the thread was consistent and it pissed me off. It didn’t matter who it was being directed at. No-one should have to put up with consistent nastiness like that.

      • joe90 2.1.2

        Semi-literate cretin opines….

        [not a great fan of ableist ad homs either. Can we please up our game here? – weka]

      • james 2.1.3

        Second most racist you say? (based on your own rantings Im sure)

        Shows you have a very small view of the world. You should try expanding your horizons and knowledge.

        In the meantime – here is something to read:


        • Sam

          James… Never thought I’d see the day some one like you would fall in behind Killary… Normies just continuing to amaze…

      • There’re reason why Trumo won

        Yeah, the US still has a biased and undemocratic system that allowed the person without even the plurality of voter support to ‘win’.

        America only became the second most racist bigoted country behind Europ

        [Citation Needed]

        And please don’t talk about the U.S health system, there’s a reason why the U.S health system is the most expensive in the world. Because Obama care is a dog, which is two steps removed from Nixons Medicare bill…

        Of course there is – it’s because it’s privatised and thsu has the dead-weight loss of profit, the dead-weight loss of advertising (which carries more dead-weight loss of profit), massively over paid execs and then the bludging shareholders.

        Obama care made things a little cheaper but all that dead-weight loss of capitalists really hurts.

        I just had to clear a few things up because you’ve got no argument. You muppets are just given these memes that you shit post with out even checking to see what the memes all about.

        You’re just spreading your ignorance around.

        • Sam

          I don’t know of any studies that say Europe is the most racist place on the planet. It’s an observation that most Europeans are blond and blue eyed. Pretty innocuous really until people start to deviate even the tiniest bit then holy shit it all comes out. I mean America learnt it from Europ and the plebs learnt it from the lords.

          It’s a much less controversial subject to grasp then say a ballistic missile screen with kiwi roundels on the side. I mean what kind of auto retard would come up with a defence white paper submission like that eh muh boi.

    • adam 2.3

      Who defended trump? The critics who are telling lies, and spin should be called on their lies and spin.

      This commitment by some on this site to hard core Byzantine Hippodrome style politics is getting out of hand.

      • Bill 2.3.1

        You don’t have to defend Trump to be on the wrong side of the line according to today’s McCarthyism adam. You just have to be perceived as not being most loyally positioned on what is claimed to be the right side. And the quickest way to achieve that is simply to question.

        I can’t help but notice, that for all the quick off the mark “drive by” commenting, side swiping and ad hom bullshit that generally seeks to beat down any skeptical Trump/Russia comment, not a dicky bird has come in response to that article pasted above.

        • mickysavage

          Democrats who voted to continue to allow Trump huge powers need to hang their heads in shame. Trump needs to go.

          • Bill

            I agree on both counts Micky, but would add those Democrats – the faction within the Democratic Party they represent; they also need to go.

            It appears much that’s happening by way of grassroots organising in the US recognises that as being the case….but their voices are getting drowned out by the successful hyping of, too often vacuous anti-Trump stuff, by that very faction in the Democratic Party that needs to be gone.

            I’m optimistic. i don’t think what’s being done now can be sustained for the next three years, and that worthwhile voices of opposition will break through the smash as gradually it loses its hold on peoples imaginations and attention.

            We can but hope. 🙂

        • Muttonbird

          You’re forgetting that some Kiwis couldn’t give two fucks about Russia collusion and see all those obsessed with it as being in the same wacky boat, much like those fervents on both sides of the fluoride debate. In short, time-wasters!

  3. james 3

    Labour wanted to do something about housing ….Good luck renting a home in Wellington:


    • Muttonbird 3.1

      Let’s see the foreign student numbers in Wellington attending these low quality and sometimes fraudulent courses. Add to that permanent Air BnBs and I bet you these are the things placing pressure on the rental market.

  4. joe90 4

    Paving the way for hard working Norwegians.


    The Trump administration is moving to prohibit people from Haiti — which the president allegedly insulted in a meeting last week — from applying for visas for seasonal and farm workers.

    The Department of Homeland Security has given notice it plans to prohibit people from Haiti, as well as Belize and Samoa, from applying for H-2A and H-2B visas, which are temporary.


  5. joe90 5

    You’ll never take the punk out of Alf.

    Do men find women who swear unattractive? https://t.co/KatWEWHeUo— Metro (@MetroUK) January 16, 2018

    Do women who swear give a fuck if they don’t? https://t.co/sNf9UzVnKK— Alison Moyet (@AlisonMoyet) January 17, 2018

  6. alwyn 6

    I see that Twyford’s housing plans are coming to fruition.
    Here, apparently, are 9 houses, all on the one site.
    They are generously sized though. 28 square metres should be enough for anyone it seems.
    I wonder if the “affordable” houses they are planning that people can buy will be like these?

    • Pat 6.1

      Twyford’s?…i think youre somewhat confused.

    • Anne 6.2

      Forgotten the Transit Camps alwyn? They were around the same size. Back in the 40s, 50s and 60s they were used to house people for a few months while they waited their turn for a new State House. Better than a car don’t you think?

      The people making the complaints are jumping to wrong conclusions. Maybe they should do some checking before they go running to the media.

    • mickysavage 6.3

      Geez Alwyn clearly a decision made before the election and symptomatic of the last Government’s contempt for poor people. Take it up with them.

      • Anne 6.3.1

        Not sure I agree with that ms. Maybe the Nat led government were planning to house them for a longer period, but I’m sure Twyford could arrange to put them to good use as temporary accommodation for those in the most desperate need.

        see my comment 6.2 about the use of Transit Camps.

        • mickysavage

          I’m referring to the timeline Anne. To get resource consent an application would have been required months ago unless I am missing something.

          • Anne

            Sorry ms. I should have been more explicit. I was referring to the symptomatic of the last Government’s contempt for poor people.

            I don’t disagree with the sentiment, but it is something this govt. can work with to temporarily house the most needy individuals until more permanent housing has become available.

  7. weka 7

    I thought it might be a good time to point people to the Policy and general culture here around moderation (apropos OM, not this thread). Main point I’d like to make is that once an author gets out the bold pen there is far less leeway involved in the discussion for commenters. This is because for moderators, having to spend time arguing about moderation when the other person isn’t listening or is arguing back or is being an arse is tedious. Most of us don’t have the time or patience.

    It’s hard to get people to write here when the community makes things difficult for them. Even more so moderators. Commenters are expendable, authors generally aren’t. This isn’t a kumbayah, everyone has equal rights kind of place, sorry lefties. While there is a very high commitment from the authors to robust debate and creating a place that progressives and lefties and people aligned with the labour movement want to be, there is no doubt that the people who do the mahi of getting posts up so that every day all year we all have a place to read and comment, those authors takes precedent and have a large say in how the place is run.

    Personally, I like talking about moderation. I did it a lot as a commenter before I became an author and moderator. I have never been moderated on TS. This is because I pay attention to who is moderating and where *their boundaries are (not where I think they should be). Each moderator has a different style, some are more hands on, others more hands off. It’s worth learning what those are.

    I don’t mind people talking about my moderations so long as its respectful and not challenging (that’s going to be context dependent). Asking questions is good too. However arguing with a moderator is pretty risky and some moderators will just ban early on for that. If you don’t want to get banned, then pay attention to what the moderator is saying.

    • Ed 7.1

      Weka, please could you advise me best way to handle personal insults such as this one from James

      Daily Review 17/01/2017

      • weka 7.1.1

        It looks to me like he’s arguing political points. He’s being a bit of an arse doing it the way he is*, but basically he’s responded to your comment calling for a boycott of the charities who benefit from pokies by pointing out that those charities not getting money will mean less services for people. There is a political response to his argument, which someone could make.

        *so there is an ongoing antagonism from james towards you over the meat thing. I’ll keep an eye on it, and by all means bring anything ott to my attention as a moderator, but in general he’s within the site rules from what I can tell (I certainly don’t read all posts though). The reason he doesn’t get a permanent ban is because TS would be really boring if we banned all the RWNJs and/or people who are arses some of the time.

        In terms of strategy, I’ve found ignoring disrespectful people helps, but often you need to put a boundary in place as well. I wouldn’t both arguing with him over it though, because I think that’s why he’s poking at you (to get a reaction). There’s plenty of other people here to talk to 🙂

        • Ed

          He has been digging away about me not caring about people with heart problems, Alzheimer’s, then today he went one step lower and mentioned my family.

          James hunts for antagonism.
          I find him very wearisome.

          • weka

            If there is more than that one comment, feel free to link to other examples.

            Yes, lots of people find him wearisome. Maybe the commentariat needs to find a different way of responding.

            • Stunned mullet

              😆 oh the irony … 😆

              [Seriously, you’re in a conversation with a moderator, is flaming really a smart move? Because all I see is an increasing workload for me (and others), when I’m already spending my spare time trying to share with commenters about how things work here. At the moment I’m seeing too many people treating TS like it’s their personal sandpit. – weka]

              • Ed

                I initiate topics of discussion

                To name a few…,,,

                Climate change
                Plant based diet
                Industrial fishing
                Industrial farming
                The negative consequences of neoliberalism
                Sugar and obesity
                Dairy farming

                What James add to the conversation?
                Sledging people who post
                And bragging about his comfortable lifestyle

                • mary_a

                  @ Ed … a good few of us appreciate your posts. So keep them coming please.

                  Anyone who relies on arrogance, insults and rudeness to get their message across has automatically lost the argument, as seen by one or two posters on this site, with one in particular, failing to contribute to the debate at all. Ignore him Ed.

                • I initiate topics of discussion…

                  …and then pack a sad and start bleating about abuse and aggression when people who disagree with you actually discuss the topic. If you can’t handle disagreement, initiating topics of discussion isn’t a good hobby.

                  • greywarshark

                    But in truth often the person isn’t discussing the topic but merely taking cheap shots. If someone then doesn’t ignore this then it takes the focus away doesn’t it.

                  • weka

                    “If you can’t handle disagreement, initiating topics of discussion isn’t a good hobby.”

                    I think this is true, but it’s also true that whatever Ed does or doesn’t do doesn’t excuse the behaviour of others. Not all of what happens here is useful, meaningful or conducive to whatever people think this place exists for. Sometimes people are just mean.

                    • Ed

                      I think that people are threatened by new ideas.

                      As you are aware, I think humans should be eating a plant based diet.

                      This quote describes the reaction of many on this site to being challenged to make such changes.

                      “All truth passes through three stages.
                      First, it is ridiculed.
                      Second, it is violently opposed.
                      Third, it is accepted as being self-evident. ”

                      Arthur Schopenhauer

                    • weka

                      Problem is Ed, while you think that (which is fine, you are entitled to your beliefs), lots of people disagree with you. When we try and discuss that we don’t get very far with you. Again that’s fine, but lots of people are here for the debate and aren’t interested in taking on someone else’s beliefs when they can’t be argued for.

                      Edit, btw, I appreciate the efforts you have made to change your commenting style here over time. That’s not gone unnoticed 🙂

                    • Ed

                      Thank you for noticing.

                • mickysavage

                  Ed it is what trolls do. The best response is to trap them showing how irrational they are by what they say.

                  • Grey Area

                    Good luck with that micky. Most trolls have thick skin, or scales.

                    • Bill

                      Heads. Trolls are renowned for having particularly thick skulls. I know this because I spoke with a Norwegian once. They don’t have scales. 😉

                  • Ed

                    Tried that. Doesn’t seem to work.
                    Some are paid to come on this site I sense.

                • mauī

                  Thank you Ed, I especially appreciate the plant based diet posts amongst others.

                  • Ed

                    Thank you Maui.

                    I stopped eating meat just over a year ago when I saw this film ‘Earthlings’. Once seen, there is no unseeing it. You suddenly realise how cruel, unnecessary and barbaric meat eating is.

                    Up to then I was nearly a pescetarian, as had cut down flesh eating because I had become aware of the environmental impact of animal agriculture.

                    The side effect was my health. When you are a vegan/vegetarian you eat little processed food. So I now eat little sugar and I can vouch for the health benefits of a plant based diet. Read a book called ‘How not to die’ by Michael Greger.

                    So the three main reasons to stop eating animals.

                    1. It is cruel
                    2. It is bad for the planet.
                    3. It is good for your health.

                    • Ed

                      We should be eating a plant based diet.
                      This quote describes the reaction of many on this site to being challenged to make such changes.

                      “All truth passes through three stages.
                      First, it is ridiculed.
                      Second, it is violently opposed.
                      Third, it is accepted as being self-evident. ”

                      Arthur Schopenhauer

                    • McFlock

                      Looking at the US, that progression also applies to complete bullshit.

                    • mauī

                      Thanks, I will add ‘How not to die’ to my reading list, there’s some others titles that sound interesting too.

                      ‘Why we love dogs, eat pigs and wear cows.’
                      ‘Vegan Cupcakes take over the world.’

                      and Vegan Gains is good at explaining the vegan diet too (may contain some adult and bodybuilding themes):

                    • Ed

                      Will look at this tomorrow

    • Wow 7.2

      Yeah I understand you probably kind of have to defend moderation, but I note that you normally talk about patterns of behaviour, and I can’t see that with RB myself… ug I just hope ya’ll are talking about it in the back end cos I do see a pattern and it’s not a good look for the site I reckon

      • weka 7.2.1

        The pattern I saw with the r-b situation was not about them personally (haven’t looked tbh but there does appear to be some history with Bill), but the tendency for too many commenters to think they can argue with moderation. You really can’t. And for bloody good reasons.

        Moderating for behaviour in the community is a different issue and yes we do take note of the pattern of behaviour of individuals.

        r-b got a week’s ban. As Lynn would say, that might be educational for them and for others. It’s not the end of the world. People need to stop thinking that moderation is about fairness for commenters. While we generally do try and be fair, in the end it often comes down to what the author needs to do to make it possible for the author to be here not the commenter. This is why I suggest getting to know individual moderator style and err on the side of caution.

        • Wow

          Yeah maybe the no argue/appeal thing is an issue in itself, don’t want a bunch of cv’s running the show do you? No cos he ended up banned eh. Tell you another thing- very few people on this site ever admit they were wrong, but RB did

          • weka

            “Yeah maybe the no argue/appeal thing is an issue in itself, don’t want a bunch of cv’s running the show do you? No cos he ended up banned eh.”

            Don’t get what you are saying there. CV got banned for a very long pattern of behaviour that caused major issues for the site. He had plenty of chances and blew them. I don’t see how that’s relevant to this situation.

            People can certainly ask why they’ve been banned, and ask for it to be reviewed. I think it’s important to understand the difference between that and arguing with a moderator, or attacking an author. That’s the whole point of what I am writing here.

            • Wow

              I’m not the first to make the cv comparison, and the relevance, to me, is a pattern, as mentioned above, causing problems, as it obviously is from all the comments in this case at least.
              RB admitted fault, apologised, was being very polite in the face of abuse, didn’t actually do what she was accused of as far as I could see, and had her main points ignored by the mod, all in open mike, not even the authors own post. Robust debate? Safe space for woman? Hmmmm.

              • weka

                I’m still not getting it. Are you saying that Bill is acting like CV?

                I’ve explained why I think the moderation happened. What is it specifically about that that you don’t understand or agree with? Because at the moment I am seeing a bunch of people saying they didn’t think r-b should be banned but they’re not actually taking notice of the reasons why r-b was banned.

            • Bill

              Maybe the CV comparison is down to the simple fact that CV submitted posts, comments and links that were not approved of by some.

              Just for a moment, put aside that CV drifted off into right wing conspiracy stuff and his problematic approach on some basic issues.

              Where are we at in terms of comparison?

              Well, it could be something to do with moderation. Except I don’t think I’m far wrong in saying CV never banned anyone. And yesterday’s outpouring from some commenters ostensibly revolved around my moderation of a potentially libelous comment.

              So we have some who are happy to ignore or minimise an instances of the site being made vulnerable, and happy to pile into an author and moderator who’s political views they disagree with.

              And that, from my perspective, is the sum and total of the comparison to CV – that for some, a level of political disagreement is all that’s required to “play the player and not the ball”.

              My “replies” feed is fairly well taken up with the same people repeatedly submitting “drive by” comments and snarky one liners that have had the effect of derailing or killing debate.

              And those same people and those same type of comments appear to fairly consistently dished up in response to identifiable political lines coming from a left perspective.

              There was an “unfortunate” ‘green light’ given for all of this. But I’ll only talk about that back end or in private.

              Meanwhile, maybe some people need to sit back and think on the differences between supporting a labour blog and supporting a sports team.

        • Anne

          I hope it hasn’t put ‘red blooded’ off from commenting here because her/his comments are always well thought through and worth reading. In my view, a warning would have been sufficient – but that is just my view.

          • weka

            I also hope rb isn’t put off commenting here. I guess a weeks ban doesn’t seem that bad to me in the scheme of things but maybe I’m just tired.

            I think warnings are a good idea but just noting that the comment where Bill did the banning was the third exchange. Yes, it’s good if moderators make it black and white, but Bill did actually explain what he thought was an appropriate response and rb decided to argue with him some more. At the most basic level, that’s wasting moderator time.

            The Policy even says it explicitly,

            Generally wasting a moderators time is just not a good idea. We’re there to deal with isolated problems. People persistently sucking up our voluntary time won’t like the results.

            • Anne

              Fair enough weka. I will try not to fall into the same trap. 🙂

              • weka

                All good (if people frame their comments in ways that are thoughtful or evenhanded, then the moderator can choose to respond or not).

                You’re one of the most respectful regulars here Anne. Even when you and I have disagreed strongly I never have the sense that you carry grudges over or that you think it’s ok to attack people.

    • This is because for moderators, having to spend time arguing about moderation when the other person isn’t listening or is arguing back or is being an arse is tedious. Most of us don’t have the time or patience.

      I totally get that. On the other hand, if a moderator annoys the site’s commenters with arbitrary, ill-tempered authoritarianism, that can also end up costing you time and effort responding to all the annoyed commenters. Some moderators’ styles are more expensive than others.

      • Muttonbird 7.3.1

        I’m not entirely sure why authors are automatically given moderation power at all. It’s not necessary and some don’t handle that power well at all.

        Sure, let Bill write but someone take the keys off him, please.

        • weka

          “I’m not entirely sure why authors are automatically given moderation power at all. It’s not necessary and some don’t handle that power well at all.”

          They’re not. Most authors can only moderate their own posts. Those that can moderate across the site earned that right.

          • Muttonbird

            And obviously Bill can moderate across the site. What performance review system is in place for such moderators?

            • weka

              I’m not interested in a conversation where you frame Bill as the problem. He’s not. And I’m finding it increasingly annoying and concerning that some people here think that taking powers off a long time author and moderator is appropriate because you don’t like something about them. As I said earlier, if you don’t like Bill’s commenting style then stay out of those debates and if you don’t like his moderating style then don’t push the boundaries.

              In recent years there’s been only been one author whose moderation caused problems for the site to the extent that the other authors felt the need to take action over. That was TRP and he eventually caused problems for the *authors. His moderation permissions were dropped back to Author and he decided to leave (a good decision IMO).

        • McFlock

          I’ve locked horns with Bill a bit lately, but he definitely walks the walk as well as talking the talk.

          He might be frustrated at human frailty, but the keys thing was a bit much, even if it wasn’t intended to be a drunk driving reference.

      • McFlock 7.3.2

        PM, Lyn’s style actually looks pretty efficient 🙂

        But I seem to recall that some of the debates about moderation (i.e. substantial threads such as this, rather than a couple of “why” comments at most) here and in other actvely-moderated forums have been more about hats – mods debating in-thread and then moderating, and back again. The moderations get a greater emphasis than the comments from the same person in the debates, or in other cases the moderation might tend towards debating itself, and it can become a minefield for commenters and aggravates the mods.

        But then I like hats, so maybe I just have a bias towards hat analogies.

        • weka

          Lynn’s style is very efficient (I learned a lot from him).

          The issue about moderating in threads one is commenting is is a particular issue for Bill and myself, who are both full time commenters (non of the other current authors are). I think the problem here is more about history (so each time e.g. Syria comes up we know there’s going to be shit flung around), and commenters being arse’s to the extent they can get away with. Much of my focus outside of the election stuff has been trying to get new authors and make TS somewhere that people would want to write. Far too often the commenting here is a problem for that.

          As I’ve just commented in OM, when I see some long threads about how to improve things for authors, I’ll probably take the stuff about moderation fairness more seriously. At the moment it looks like a bunch of people think TS exists for the regular commenters. While I have a great appreciation for the commentariat (I probably wouldn’t write without it), it really has to be balanced against people wanting to write here.

          • McFlock

            Fair enough.

          • Macro

            Well weka – I have to tell you that what I saw today turned me off this site big time. The Standard has been my go to site almost every day for almost as long as the site has been in existence.*
            But I have to say that the treatment of Red today was the lowest I have witnessed. I really hope that she ( So I gather from reading R B’s comments) returns. Her comments are usually very sound, and she did apologise for her error.
            I have not been commenting lately because I feel the site is becoming an echo chamber for some, and frankly many of the comments verge on the unhinged.

            *I remember the original Standard newpaper – it was regular reading in our household when I was young.

            • weka

              Thanks Macro, appreciate your thoughts.

              I’m hoping that things will settle down a bit in time.

              • Macro

                I’m am hoping so too. We need a strong voice on the Left here in NZ, and it is getting distorted by all sorts of distractions and bickering. It really needs to stop.

                • weka

                  Couldn’t agree more.

                • Bill

                  We need a strong voice on the Left here in NZ…

                  Well, no we don’t. There is no single “voice” of the left. The left comprises of voices.

                  And since this is a labour blog, it necessarily needs to accommodate and promote those voices (and more), if it is to live up to its claim of being a labour blog.

                  Some may see it as some kind of “duty” to shut down, marginalise and extinguish points of view that do not accord with their own, as opposed to genuinely debating (or ignoring) views that run counter to their own.

                  Such people, to my mind, are wrongheaded and a huge liability in terms of developing and exploring leftist discourses.

                  • Andre

                    “Some may see it as some kind of “duty” to shut down, marginalise and extinguish points of view that do not accord with their own … ”

                    Oddly enough, Bill, that’s a fairly close description of how your behaviour here comes across to me.

                    [I’d also like some examples. Please provide three, with links and explanation so we know what you are referring to. Because otherwise it’s just another comment having a go at an Author/moderator. Although I appreciate the relatively neutral way you did it, there still needs to be more than just assertion by implication – weka]

                    • Bill

                      If you can link to instances of me pointedly and/or deliberately derailing a line of argument with smash, or of “piling in” with others on someone at a personal level simply because they hold a given political perspective, or of completely ignoring an argument in favour of sledging someone, then by all means, feel free to provide those links.

                      Otherwise, your “oddly enough” perception of ‘my behaviour’ is just so much bullshit, aye?

                      And is informed by…well, what you think it might be informed by if what you say has no actual basis Andre?

                    • weka

                      moderation note for you to respond to thanks Andre.

                    • Andre

                      Ok, weka, I wasn’t going to bother responding to Bill since it doesn’t appear he’s interested in honest feedback, but if you’re interested in hearing out how things come across to this reader and occasional commenter, then I’ll put the time in.

                      The first example I’ll use is yesterday’s fiasco with red-blooded. Important context there is that Ken (from Open Parachute) shares Bill’s controversial positions with respect to the Russia investigation, while red-blooded does not. (Ken also shares Bill’s controversial views on the Syria situation, which is also relevant context in that it makes Ken and Bill somewhat birds of a feather). When I first saw red-blooded’s starting comment, it was after the fluoride crap was well underway, but before Bill’s moderating. It was clearly a case of red-blooded forming a mistaken impression based on the look of one page. Based on Bill’s past behaviour and that Ken has close ideological affinity to Bill on this matter of importance to Bill, I guessed that Bill would respond with aggressive commenting and/or moderation way out of proportion to r-b’s error, which then results in r-b defending herself (naturally and politely in the event), which Bill then nit-picked and goaded with further responses to get to the point of justifying banning. And so it played out.

                      The episodes with Jenny and Syria are another example of Bill appearing to “to shut down, marginalise and extinguish points of view”. That played out over a number of posts, culminating in this: https://thestandard.org.nz/heroes-2/#comment-1299115 Important context is that Jenny claimed to have been in Syria, so had first hand on-the-ground experience. I’ve only briefly passed through Syria, and haven’t spoken much with acquaintances that have been in Syria much more recently, nevertheless Jenny’s comments were in line with the (very limited) information I have from my own channels. From what I could see across multiple posts, Jenny’s only offence was to continue pushing back at the line Bill was pushing, even after threats of moderation. Bill’s behaviour towards Psycho Milt in those same threads also struck me as trying to shut Milt down in the same way.

                      Sorry, I’ve got a commitment I need to get to (and a crashing computer) so I’ve run out of time to link a third example and unpack why it appears to me Bills behaviour suppresses open debate.

                    • Bill

                      Damn Andre, you’re right! Ken at Open Parachute does have a skeptical approach to western reporting on Syria. I just wish I’d known sooner so I might have read some of his thoughts on it all at the time.

                      I find it somewhat odd you’re strecthing back to something from over over a year ago ( a year long ban handed down to Jenny), that “someone” said of at the time…

                      ” I’m surprised she hasn’t copped a permanent ban to be honest, but I suspect that it’s because moderators have been cutting her some slack.”

                      And is this for real you think I’m not interested in honest feedback? Or is it that you know damned fine well there are no examples of me engaging in the type of behaviour listed, and so are doing ye olde “run away” defense maneuver?

                      I hope not. Because I genuinely want any links to examples you can find. Maybe after your commitment, crashing computer and third example to Weka are all out of the way? That would be appreciated.

                    • weka

                      thanks Andre. I’m not willing to discuss the moderation issues any more where they’re focussed on Bill (not because of you specifically, just the whole thing has gone on way too long and too many people still seem to think it’s ok to have a go at authors).

                      I will say that with regards to Jenny, that I have moderated her a number of times for exactly what she was moderated for in your link. She has a long history of spamming posts with her own views that she often uses to derail posts and push her own agenda. She also repeatedly lied about the views of authors. Those things are unacceptable. I won’t let an MRA push anti-feminist lines in a post I wrote about sexism. Just because a post goes up about x topic doesn’t mean it’s a free for all. Authors have a right to protect the conversations under their posts and keep them relatively on topic. Of the active moderators here, all do that btw.

                      There was a lot of effort to not give Jenny a permanent ban, and as you can see from my comment in the thread you linked to, she was easily the person that took up the most moderation time of any commenter. In the end she copped a long term ban.

                      I’m giving that context, because I think that your views of moderation are contextualised in your experiences as a commenter in discussions about politics where you differ from a moderator. My views of Jenny are broader and take into account the very things that moderation is here to address – people that can’t work within the bounds of the site and cause problems especially for authors. Moderation of Jenny wasn’t about shutting down debate, it was actually about protecting the debate culture here, and the ability of authors to write without being harassed.

                  • Macro

                    May I remind you Bill that the Labour movement and the power of the Unions was not having many different voices but a united voice and purpose.

                    When the union’s inspiration through the workers’ blood shall run
                    There can be no power greater anywhere beneath the sun
                    Yet what force on earth is weaker than the feeble strength of one
                    For the Union makes us strong

                    Solidarity forever, solidarity forever
                    Solidarity forever
                    For the Union makes us strong

                    unity or agreement of feeling or action, especially among individuals with a common interest; mutual support within a group.

                    • Bill


                      There, I think, go the European syndicalists and the OBU of “the states” down the memory hole then (if you’re suggesting unions are linked to political parties). And that’s before contemplating the labour movement as exists beyond just the narrow confines of unionism, and that also contains many revolutionary as well as reformist strands….some parliamentary and some not…and most certainly not all singing from the same song sheet.

        • Anne

          But then I like hats,…

          Oh god no… my Dad warned me about people like you. When I learnt to drive he told me to keep well away from men in hats. According to him they were all terrible drivers. 😈

          Mind you that was an awful long time ago. Maybe they’re better drivers now. 🙂

          • McFlock

            I have to be a good driver. As a moped driver, I’m almost the squishiest person on the road

            • adam

              Yeah your right up there with cyclists.

              Silly question, do you wear gloves? I ask becasue so many in Jaffa land don’t.

              I cycle and now wear leather gloves, even in the heat of auckland. I’m looking for some kevler one which don’t look all hard core motor bike.

      • weka 7.3.3

        “On the other hand, if a moderator annoys the site’s commenters with arbitrary, ill-tempered authoritarianism, that can also end up costing you time and effort responding to all the annoyed commenters. Some moderators’ styles are more expensive than others.”

        Sure, but it’s always interesting to me that hardly anyone gives Lynn shit about his moderation style.

        Basically what’s happening here is similar to what happened to Stephanie. She tried to be fair but to moderate firmly, and got slammed. I learned a lot about what happens here to authors who also comment on the site and moderate. It’s not pretty.

        I think Bill is entitled to moderate as he sees fit, even where I disagree with some of his individual moderations (he disagrees with mine too btw, there’s not really any precise consensus on it amongst the authors, although there are broad agreements). He’s the one putting up posts.

        And there’s no good reason why the commentariat can’t moderate itself better.

        • Psycho Milt

          Sure, but it’s always interesting to me that hardly anyone gives Lynn shit about his moderation style.

          His reasons for banning people usually make sense to me. The fact that he’s not polite about it doesn’t bother me one way or the other.

          • weka

            What is it about the moderation of r-b that doesn’t make sense to you?

            • Psycho Milt

              NB: I’m criticising a moderator’s action specifically because you’ve asked me to do it, not because I’m feeling particularly suicidal – please read this comment with that in mind.

              Banning someone who’s just apologised for the mistake they made doesn’t make sense to me. What Bill describes as someone making a “false accusation” and “playing the victim” looks to me like someone who’s apologising for an egregious and embarrassing error but also won’t let stand the suggestion that maybe it was a lie rather than a mistake.

              • Bill

                1. The original comment was a straight up smear, a falsehood – and exactly the type of comment that can be taken as being slanderous or libelous. (And all mods err on the side of caution with that) – (link)

                2. I quite reasonably stated in response to Anne (who had taken red-blooded at their word) that a number of ‘arguably problematic’ comments had been submitted, “… off the back of a mistake or a lie on the part of Red Blooded that would have taken ‘one click and two seconds’ to get to the bottom of. (link)

                3.The “apology” was of the common garden “I’m sorry if anyone was offended” variety of apology (ie – not really an apology at all) – (link)

                4. Riding in the same comment as “the apology” there were attempts to minimise and/or excuse the smearing by way of attacking Ken of Open Parachute again (essentially and ludicrously equating her fuck-up with the fact Ken had said he hadn’t read “Fire and Fury”).

                5. redblooded also decided to isolate the word ‘lie’ mentioned at number 2. and run with some victim nonsense (in bold type) off it within the same comment as the supposed apology.

                6. They ran with the “you called me a liar” in a further comment. (link)

                7. I’ve been quietly noting that although Anne bore the brunt of my initial somewhat caustic response to the effects of whole fluoride nonsense, not one of the good people so concerned about my interactions hereabouts have seen fit to say a dicky bird in support of Anne or commented that I was being a bit harsh in my reply to her.

                8. Having flicked through the list of bans that have landed on people for putting forward falsehoods etc, I can tell you straight that red-blooded got off lightly.

                I hope that clears things up somewhat in terms of understanding for you there PM.

                • I’ve been quietly noting that although Anne bore the brunt of my initial somewhat caustic response to the effects of whole fluoride nonsense, not one of the good people so concerned about my interactions hereabouts have seen fit to say a dicky bird in support of Anne or commented that I was being a bit harsh in my reply to her.

                  Did you ban her? The answer to that also serves as an answer to why nobody’s had any complaints about it.

                  • weka

                    People have definitely been complaining about tone, perceived intention, attitude, rudeness etc, not just the actual ban itself.

                • Muttonbird

                  1. Libellous? Ken’s going to take us to the cleaners? Please. May I suggest in future when you link to Open Parachute you declare your relationship with Ken? I think the vehemence of your original post on OM took many people by surprise.

                  3. That’s your opinion. RB apologised promptly and quite adequately I thought. You seem to be asking for a much more subservient apology.

                  7. Seriously, you don’t appear to realise that posters post in fear of a banning when asking questions of moderators about moderation. After warnings from weka to not debate it anymore and your “somewhat caustic responses” – we don’t! No surprise then no one backed her up at that point.

                  8. RB’s was a hurried mistake. We’ve all done it. RB acknowledged the mistake, yet you still call it a falsehood which is another word for ‘lie’. Channelling James there, Bill.

                  [I’m now shutting this down too. Please stop relitigating the moderation now. I opened up a discussion about it in the hopes that we could gain some better understanding of how moderation works here. But there has been far too much having a go at authors. It appears that some people still don’t know how to discuss moderation without trying to undermine the author.

                  I really hope that red-blooded isn’t put off by this because she is a great commenter for the site. It’s only a week’s ban and it looks to me like some people are using this as a reason to criticise Bill. I don’t have the time to keep checking whether people are overstepping the bounds, so I think it’s better just to move on.

                  General comments about moderation are ok with me personally, but I think that some are struggling with how to do that without telling the authors how to run the site. I suggest we take a step back and focus on other things for a while. My other best advice is that if you want to have less tight or stringent moderation here, start finding ways to make the place better for Authors and Moderators. – weka]

                  • Bill

                    I see. So if you were running a blog and legally liable, you’d base your moderation around defamation and possible defamation etc on whether or not the person being defamed was likely to take action or was capable of taking action. Good oh.

                    You wouldn’t be lasting long.

                    The “vehemence” of the original “cut and paste” intro on a double link comment recommending a read? My relationship with Ken? What the fuck are you on about?
                    “Exhibit A m-lud”.

                    Much ‘losing of the plot’ going on. 😉

  8. adam 8

    Call for national strike in Honduras, from 20th of January.


    Video on escalating state violence inside Honduras towards protesters. 10 minute video.

  9. Pat 9

    PPP’s …..required reading for government ministers


    “The cost of privately financing public projects can be 40% higher than relying solely upon government money, auditors found.”

    • Macro 9.1

      Yep the Brits have woken up to the fact that PPP’s suck big time and have cost the tax payers billions. The attraction is the apparent initial up-front cost. Take the Northern Gateway – that the Clark govt signed up to. Now a small section of SH1 from Orewa to Puhoi is tolled. (ie uses pay a tax which is collected by the Govt and payed to a private company!) For using a section of the main highway of NZ.
      This nonsense can be repeated in almost all facets of Govt service. Hospitals, Education, you name it. I just hope that our current govt takes heed, because enough is enough.

  10. Ed 10

    The Herald calls it weird weather.
    Rachel Stewart asks if we’re worried yet.
    For blogger David Kennedy at Local Bodies, climate change just got personal……

    “Obviously I am not a drought stricken farmer, whose economic survival is at stake, but this is the garden that I have invested 25 years into and have planted and nurtured many of these plants over that time. I have done my best to engender a greater awareness of climate change over many years and now that its effects have become super-personal I am very angry at those who I hold partly responsible.

    I am angry with the previous government that ignored advice and promoted fossil fuel madness instead (encouraging mining and drilling and spending billions on new motorways.) I am angry with Fonterra for pursuing a high greed agenda that wasn’t sustainable and was largely responsible for the huge increase in methane emissions. I am angry at all those in the US who refused to vote responsibly and not consider our children and grandchildren’s future when they voted for Donald Trump.

    Mostly I am worried that we are too late and the climate change juggernaut has built up too great a head of steam to turn around. James Shaw, the new Minister for Climate Change, has a huge job ahead. ”


  11. joe90 11


    (my bold)

    To claim that misogyny is a pyramid built upon a silent majority might seem like a harsh indictment, but it is also an empowering one. If men can swallow the confronting reality that their silence is foundational to both sexism and sexual violence, then they get to embrace the inverse reality—that their vocal dissent could begin to destabilise these evils at their base. This counts most of all when there are no women around—I have a feeling the most sexist things ever said about me occurred when I wasn’t in earshot, or even in the room. It counts in the all-male text chain. It counts in the locker-room. It counts when there are no women there to pat you on the back. It counts when there’s nothing in it for you.


  12. Ed 12

    67 comments on Daily Review.
    172 comments on Open Mike.
    Busy today!

  13. Ed 13

    An interesting perspective.
    Don’t know what I think about this.
    But it it thought provoking.

    Geoff Simmons.

    “It appears we are being softened-up for a watering-down of Labour’s target on child poverty.

    Their initial plan was to reduce the number of children in poverty by 100,000. Their much vaunted Families Package alone was predicted to reduce poverty by around 88,000 (compared to National’s tax cut package with 50,000). But apparently someone in Treasury got their numbers wrong – the number is likely to be a lot lower (they don’t know how much yet).

    Depending on how you measure it, there are between 150,000-300,000 children in poverty at the moment. The target of 100,000 looks a long way off, and there isn’t much moolah left in the kitty.

    The hidden message here is clear; sorry but this is all a lot harder than it first looked. We are doing our best, but reducing child poverty will take a fair bit longer than we thought.

    Of course this is complete poppycock. In Government anything is possible. It is simply a question of priorities. And clearly, like the last Labour-led Government, poverty isn’t as much of a priority as they like to claim it is……”


  14. Ed 14

    ……whereas I do know what I think about this.
    Like Gareth Hughes, I think we should ban rodeos.

    ” It’s time for NZ to resign rodeo to the history books.

    This summer there will be about 33 rodeo events around New Zealand, where animals are wrestled, roped, chased, tied up, yanked, poked and hurt.

    Rodeo events include calf-roping, steer wrestling and bull riding, all of which rely on inflicting pain and fear in animals to get them to perform. Rodeos contain deliberate cruelty, such as using electric prods and rope burning, but they also rely on inherent cruelty by exposing animals to rougher behaviour than they’d ever experience on a farm or props such as flank straps provoking distress.

    Common injuries include broken ribs, backs and legs, punctured lungs, deep internal organ bruising, haemorrhaging, ripped tendons, torn or stretched ligaments and muscles, broken necks, torn trachea, spinal damage and disc rupture, bruising, and subcutaneous tissue damage…..

    One of the worst events is calf-roping, which involves calves as young as three months old fleeing at speed from a rider on a horse. The rider lassos the calf around the neck, jerking it violently off its feet, then dismounts and wrestles the animal to the ground and ties its legs together……

    In the past, dog fighting, bear baiting and cock fighting were all considered “community entertainment”, but thankfully our animal welfare standards have improved and that’s no longer the case.

    It’s time to resign rodeo to the history books, where it belongs.”


  15. UncookedSelachimorpha 15

    Yet another article on worker shortages that fails to make a single mention of the pay and conditions on offer.


    I know in Murchison the cafes and hotels can’t get staff – they also all pay less than the living wage. Go figure.

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  • A Progressive Agenda
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