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Open mike 01/02/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 1st, 2021 - 46 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

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46 comments on “Open mike 01/02/2021 ”

    • Subliminal 2.1

      Yes Francesca and not to mention the massive and continuing unprecedented militarisation of Washington DC. 25 000 Homeguard for the inauguration and associated celebrations but to be maintained at the level of 5-7 000 until at least March.

      Deploying active military troops is an even graver step than putting National Guard soldiers on the streets, but they both present dangers. As Trump’s Defense Secretary said in response to calls from some over the summer to deploy troops in response to the Black Lives Matter and Antifa protests: “The option to use active duty forces in a law enforcement role should only be used as a matter of last resort, and only in the most urgent and dire of situations."


    • Stuart Munro 2.2

      I thought I'd see if there was any material that countered your pollyanna view of Russian policing, and found this.

      And this creative use of chains from the Washington Post.

      I have concerns about the enthusiasms of NZ police from time to time, but I wouldn't trade the worst of them for Russians.

  1. Herodotus 3

    Great to read this, thank you to the the community and mana whenua, for some real action on our environment. I just hope that all abide by this and we don't see any going against this as it is viewed as "optional". Better to see the local body/govt formalise this. Better still enlarge such protection into other areas 😉

    "Mana whenua on Waiheke island are placing a two-year rāhui on the island in a bid to stop four species of kaimoana from collapsing."


  2. Adrian 4

    How’s this for opportunity shit. A young French lady working for us has applied for a visa extension as she has a winery job organised with a big winery for harvest. Now because she does not have an email address of the Immigration official for the previous visa she has to pay an extra 440 dollars to be allocated an official with an email address just to advise when the visa will start,, this is on top of the 500 bucks for the visa extension and another 500 dollars paid to an approved doctor for a medical check for a 7, that’s SEVEN, minute consultation which consisted of measuring her height and weight and to see if she had good vision.

    This is pretty fucking close to corruption.

    • RedBaronCV 4.1

      Apart perhaps from the doctor are you suggesting that us taxpayers should foot the bill for the staff to do all this visa renewal? Is the big winery overseas owned with profits going overseas, workers on poor contracts and limited tax paid? Are we socialising the costs but privatising the profits of the labour involved. Why does the big winery not reimburse these costs? $940 to the government for the opportunity for a visa and all the costs associated with this from top to bottom doesn’t seem like a lot. AFAIK immigration as depafrtment is not on full cost recovery.

      Can a local not be hired at decent wages

      • Adrian 4.1.1

        I should have mentioned that this is EVERY 6 months and it is just a roll over, she is an experienced cellar hand and vineyard worker and without her cohort at least half of last years crop would not have been harvested and processed at a Balance of Payments and GDP cost to NZ of about a billion dollars, which will pay for a lot of vaccines etc.

        In areas like Marlborough the unemployment rate is less than 2 per cent, her pay rate is $25hr. That 2% is really only those that can do light duties or are chronicly workshy.

        And Red Baron just exactly how much paper work do you think costs 1000 bucks

        Shanreagh, they changed the way they do things, it used to be by letter, the corruption I alluded to is demanding $500 to supply a contact email address, lets see how you would react if your power company or anybody else you deal with tried that on.

        If we havent got enough workers to get in valuable off-shore earning dollars of income maybe we should start cleaning out all the shiny-arses from the bureaucracy and put them to work in the fields just like chairman Mao did.

        • shanreagh

          Shanreagh, they changed the way they do things, it used to be by letter, the corruption I alluded to is demanding $500 to supply a contact email address, lets see how you would react if your power company or anybody else you deal with tried that on.

          Another reminder for her to try the idea of going onto the site to see the usual email format and then trying it for her case manager.

          Power company email contacts are hardly in the scale of documentation giving a person the right to be (and work) in a country that is not their own.

          You are over-egging to to say that this is corruption. There is no evidence that this is some sort of backhander to a private person to get her in the system ahead of someone else.

          I worked in an area of Govt where hugely complex documentation was required, and but we where we also also very simple lists of what had to be provided. A lodgement fee was charged and if the documentation was found to be lacking it was returned and once corrected had to be re-lodged and another lodgement fee charged. This was in an effort to focus lodgers and also so that officers checking the docs did not have to waste time on a case where the information was not complete.

        • RedBaronCV

          It's not just the in your face paperwork. It's the cost of all the background stuff too- setting a policy, hiring the people to do it, providing computors and space to put them etc etc.

          So if the applicants don't pay then you expect me the taxpayer to stump up? It's an employer cost not mine talk to them. Unless immigration is charging enough to offset the entire costs of the operation (and I don't believe it is) then there is a taxpayer contribution.

          Cost recovery is not corruption – nobody is pocketing this personally. Like some one below said immigration is a privilege not a right and the large sense of entitlement that some exhibit around it as either an employer or an applicant grates.

          Plus highly skilled and $25 per hour aren't exactly in the same ballpark. Better structured jobs would encourage internal migration to them. Some businesses in Marlborough have done that.

          Winery's may also earn overseas exchange but that has to have the remittance of any profits and other funds transferred overseas deducted from it which may not leave too much at all as net earnings for the nation. I understand that a lot of the big winery's are overseas owned. Does it even pay any local income tax? or is it just bludging it's social costs off the taxpayer. Some of our other industries (overseas fishing boats?) appear to be not worth having.Are overseas owned wineries another one of these?

    • McFlock 4.2

      I get the feeling they might just be pre-covid "fuck off" fees. You know the sort: "this application is something that adds a disproportionate level of work for the system and you should have thought ahead, so here's a sum that matches my level of ennui at your plight".

      I wouldn't be opposed to ditching those fees for people stuck here by covid in [checks notes] the rest of the planet.

      • Matiri 4.2.1

        Absolutely McFlock, and I'm sure the doctor would much prefer helping people who are unwell.

        When I applied for residency back in the nineties, I was charged $1000 for a chest specialist in Hamilton to sign off my chest x-ray to confirm I didn't have Tb. That didn't include the x-ray charge! An unwelcome distraction for busy medical people.

    • Chris 4.3

      "…because she does not have an email address of the Immigration official for the previous visa she has to pay an extra 440 dollars to be allocated an official with an email address…"

      Go to the Ombudsman about this. Government or official bodies cannot extract money from people for this sort of thing.

    • Stuart Munro 4.4

      It's wicked alright – mind, just the medical for my Saudi Iqama was over $1200 (did one for $400 in Korea). Half the reason I gave up working abroad – it felt like they were taking the piss.

    • shanreagh 4.5

      Why has she not got the email address? Did she not keep the previous documentation on her email site or printed out? If so shame…….always taught to travel with multiple places where visa and other important documentation is stored and able to be located.

      Can she not go to the website and look at the typical form of the email addresses and use this on the name of the person who she was dealing with? Have a test run to see if it gets through.

      Cost should be borne by the company. Company should be asked to document its efforts to get NZ employees.

      Sorry no sympathy.

      • In Vino 4.5.1

        Have you never lost email addresses owing to your trusty computer crashing or getting stolen just before you were going to do back-up, which should be done automatically now, but how many of us are ensuring it is actually happening?
        (Have I just invented a new form of ‘The Extended Question’?)

        • shanreagh

          Of course but if my emails had included a visa & previous correspondence relating to this there is no way that my emails be the only place to find this. It would be printed off and copies sent to others as well. It seems? she got the previous papers in hard copy so may have mislaid these.

          • In Vino

            Yes,, all valid, but I like to think that your 'Of course' applied to my final question about whether I had invented a new form of the over-extended question.

            Personally, I like wine, so I think this valuable person should be able to stay. But this dispute is similar to the one about whether it should be easy for expat Kiwis to return. Many views.

    • bwaghorn 4.6

      Why doesnt she just open an email account?, fuck if a dozy shepherd can do it it cant be hard.

      • Adrian 4.6.1

        Its not her email address, its an email address of a specific person who is her “client representative to send something to.

        • Brigid

          If she thinks the fee is exorbitant she could simply not pay it and go home.

          Besides the story seems a bit lacking in information. The person whose email she lacks most definitely does have one. There must be some way to find it.

          She's not the only person in the country with such experience I know that for sure.

        • shanreagh

          Presuming she has actually searched her emails? Also confirming that the application was handled by email from both sides. Seems really weird that she cannot search her emails to find this documentation. Has she been offered a desktop to search rather than on her phone? Sometimes phones are less that the best for searching for older docs.

          Would she have forwarded the docs onto another person such as parents, friend, sibling as many (sensible) overseas travellers do? Has she got luggage stored somewhere that it might be in?

          This seems so odd not to have duplicates somewhere of important documentation like this. Perhaps advise her to do for the future …….I send an email to myself that I don't open as well as to a friend and sibling when I am travelling. I used to tape/hide a copy of this sort of stuff inside my main luggage so that if day to day stuff was stolen I still had an extra copy close at hand.

          Has she tried the idea of finding the format of emails on the site then using this to make an email address of the person who looked after her…….or has she not kept the hard copies either to see who the case manager was?

          Most odd.

  3. Reality 5

    I know a number of people who are getting irritated by overseas visitors, on whatever category they are here on, and potential immigrants, acting in an entitled and demanding way. It is a privilege to be here, particularly given the chaos in so many countries.

    NZ taxpayers should not be subsiding people's travel costs and OE adventures. This big winery should do that or the young person can save up and pay from wages earned, just like NZers have to do to pay for the formalities to go to the UK for their OE, for example.

  4. Chris 6

    "Anyone with even an ounce of humanity could see this was a situation that should have been elevated above the usual box-checking."


    Yes, indeed. That same box-checking approach happens day-in day-out at every MSD office around the country.

  5. Herodotus 8

    As we in Auckland are having a long weekend – and the need to contact a school today.
    It got me thinking when are we not being judged or under employment expectations during our own free time as an employee ?


    ”The woman dubbed a "Karen" after a violent boating rage incident is a primary school deputy principal who says she's now facing employment action because of the clash.”

    • KSaysHi 8.1

      I just heard that after he left office Trump was de-banked. Now that's petty.

      And foolish. This guy is a New York scrapper. IMHO he is bound to make some kind of come back later, mabey just a month or two. What if he leads the charge to move to digital currencies? Or even starts his own currency? Stupid to make an enemy of someone without needing to.

      • McFlock 8.1.1

        Summary of financial institutions that have dumped fmr-dolt45.

        Not sure I believe the insurrection excuse – I just suspect that him out of the white house now means the bank-calculated cost of doing business with him outweighs any likely benefit.

      • Macro 8.1.2

        I just heard that after he left office Trump was de-banked

        That is nothing new. The banks have long held a low opinion of him and most American Banks have refuse to do business with him for over a decade. Most of what bears his name is actually financed by off-shore loans funnelled through Deutsche Bank. These loans – totalling over $450m – fall due in 3 years. Meanwhile many of the golf courses and hotels that bear his name are loosing money.

        Anyone who follows him is as stupid as he is.

  6. Incognito 9

    @ Red:

    In the past, you have been trying many times to get around bans and sometimes with some success. For some reason you seem to think that bans do not apply to you and you can do what you like here as if it is some kind of catch-me-if-you-can game. Keep it up and you’re heading for a permanent ban.

    To be 100% clear: you’ll be free to comment here again on 7 Feb. If you again try to get around it, you’ll be gone permanently. Whether or not you acknowledge having seen these two warnings is up to you because I don’t care either way; I don’t have to provide this service to you because TS doesn’t owe you anything.

  7. Incognito 10

    A predictable non-response from National: cast doubt on the economic costs of climate action.

    Paul Goldsmith is charging up his calculator to run the sums because Michael Woodhouse cannot find his abacus.


    • weka 10.1

      solar powered calculator I hope.

    • Nic the NZer 10.2

      The costs of climate change mitigation are negative. At some point the negative consequences of BAU will start to dominate (somewhere above 2 degrees global warming). Because the modelling behind the report has no way of projecting when that happens (and because if every other country does or doesn't participate New Zealand won't change the outcome), the modeling just looks at negative impacts relating to BAU anyway.

      In writing the report they are aware enough to understand this and that they should limit their role to projecting costs rather than determining if New Zealand net benefits from acting.

      • Incognito 10.2.1

        Over the next 11 months, Government (i.e. Labour) will formulate its plan, which will need to be further reviewed, refined, and possibly consulted on, maybe even in the next election. Meanwhile, it will make some cosmetic changes and token efforts and loads of promises and ‘commitments’. In other words: BAU. If the up-front costs are in the vicinity of a few percent of GDP, no political party can reasonably argue against it as the fiscal and monetary responses to the Covid-19 pandemic have shown. National has no credibility at all and it has nothing to lose with it current approach. ACT is just a loose cannon of gun nutters. Labour is looking at house prices to make sure they only increase by a few percent annually. We’re toast.

        The CCC’s report sets a very low political bar for this Government and there’s at least one major gap in it because the bar would be too high, in the CCC’s own words, FFS. See whether you can spot it.

  8. Ad 11

    Australian Prime Minister is confident that Bing can successfully replace google as a search engine from Australia, if google deliberately pulls it in response to a new requirement that google pays for its Australian local news content.


    Would everyone here be happy with replacing google with Bing?

    At the moment I see it as substantially inferior.

    But good on Scottie for facing google down anyway.

    • RedBaronCV 11.1

      Yeah local media need the money back to fund local jobs and investigations. The Aussies need to win this one then break up the concentration of media ownership. This should not be a Murdoch benefit bill. Scottie probably isn't on board for the second half but that can wait a little.

      I use Duck duck go and it seems to do the job. Of course the more a search engine is used then the better the results should be. Plus setting up a VPN and cloaking the country of origin ( like watching sports) would enable continued google searching? And breaking down the google dominance in Aus in favour of alternatives would encourage new search engine entrants world wide surely?

  9. Incognito 12

    Reti the Yeti is back from the wilderness and has been sighted in Wellington’s Reserve, or should we call him Bigfoot because he sure knows how to stick his foot in his mouth.

    Keep it up, Tova, we can all do with some light entertainment.


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