Open Mike 01/02/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 1st, 2017 - 222 comments
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222 comments on “Open Mike 01/02/2017 ”

  1. Steve Wrathall 1

    Why should English condemn Trump for protecting US security when other presidents have also banned certain nationalities? e.g. Carter-Iran, Obama-Iraq. And where is the condemnation of the 16 nations that ban entry to Israelis?

    [lprent: Since this appears to have become a diversion thread that bears little of no relationship to the post and has a certain degree of factless argument, I’m sending this thread to OpenMike. The short answer is that most of the 16 nations appear to have been ones that Israel has bans on travel to and from. A few of the Arab states appear to have bans on Israeli citizens or people travelling through Israel – which as a side-comment, also appear to have been ones that Mossad appears to have been most active in.

    If anyone wants a ban, then they are free to raise this topic again as a factless diversion. If anyone has more information then use OpenMike or a post on the topic. ]

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      You can’t tell the difference between pausing the approval of visa applications and Trump’s racist executive order. And compound that failure by whining that “Obama did it too”, even though he didn’t. Reality fail plus a broken moral compass. Classy.

      We covered your pathetic inability to use Google to discover the various NZ left condemnations of antisemitism yesterday. While I realise that a failure like you only has the argumentum ad nauseam to fall back on, why not try harder rather than blowing harder for a change?

      As for leadership, after all your other public failures, it’s hardly surprising that you prefer the Attlee approach over the Churchillian model.

      • dv 1.1.1

        Yes that aussie school boy banned entry going to a space camp would have been really dangerous.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.2

      And where is the condemnation of the 16 nations that ban entry to Israelis?

      [citation needed]

      Actually, considering their acts of war against NZ over the last few years I’d probably ban them as well.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.1

          Interesting. Half of them are restrictions by Israel itself as it considers the others enemy states.

          I don’t believe that the US has declared the nations involved as enemy states.

          • wellfedweta 1.2.1.1.1

            Also forgot to quote this:

            “In addition, Iran,[31] Kuwait,[32] Lebanon,[33] Libya,[34] Saudi Arabia,[35] Sudan,[36] Syria[37] and Yemen[38] do not allow entry to people with evidence of travel to Israel, or whose passports have either a used or an unused Israeli visa.”

            I think Steve Wrathall was drawing attention to the hypocrisy of calling out the US but not all these other countries?

            • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Except he failed to demonstrate that those countries haven’t been called out.

              Whereas a simple Google search demonstrates that antisemitism is routinely condemned by the left, the right, and pretty much everyone except fascists and POTUS.

              • wellfedweta

                Steve wasn’t referring to anti-semitism. He was referring to the hypocrisy of criticizing the US policy and not criticizing the exact same policy exercised by other nations against Israeli citizens. If you can show where they have been called out, address that to him.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  That isn’t how this works: he made the assertion: it’s up to you or him to prove it.

                  Given his and your track record of lying, first you’d have to demonstrate how legal residents were affected too.

                  From my own perspective, Maninthemiddle, I think you have far more in common with the bigots in all the countries concerned than you do with their victims, and I condemn the lot of you.

                  • wellfedweta

                    Steve Wrathall posed two questions.

                    1. Why should English condemn Trump for protecting US security when other presidents have also banned certain nationalities? e.g. Carter-Iran, Obama-Iraq, and
                    2. And where is the condemnation of the 16 nations that ban entry to Israelis?

                    Point 2 is not an assertion, it is a question. Where is the condemnation?

                    Both points nicely highlight the hypocrisy of the anti-Trump rhetoric currently being produced by the left. If you want another example, look a few posts down, where Draco posted a humorous but inaccurate Tweet, which LPrent endorsed without any fact check.

                    For the record, Trump is a nutter, IMHO, but the left are empowering him by the irrational criticism and hyperbole. It will see his ratings go through the roof.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      protecting US security

                      He’s doing that, is he?

                      False frames aren’t arguments.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Why should English condemn Trump for protecting US security when other presidents have also banned certain nationalities?

                      Is he doing that or is he giving the illusion of doing that?

                      IMO, it’s the latter.

                      Now, he could declare all those nations an enemy of the US and he might have a leg to stand on for banning people from there. It is, after all, what Israel did to its own citizens. The problem with him doing that though is that none of those nations have ever attacked the US – the US has attacked them though.

                      And where is the condemnation of the 16 nations that ban entry to Israelis?

                      To me it comes down to the reason for the ban. Israel has been, IIRC, quite aggressive to those nations and so they may do the same as Israel do to 8 of those states and hold Israel as an enemy state which would make banning Israelis quite reasonable.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      banned certain nationalities

                      Obama didn’t ban any nationalities. Your support for fascism requires a false premise. All your other argument are equally shit, Blockleiter

                    • Wellfedweta

                      “He’s doing that, is he?”

                      Debatable, but that’s his intent. The hypocrisy Steve highlights is not debatable.

                    • Wellfedweta

                      “Now, he could declare all those nations an enemy of the US and he might have a leg to stand on for banning people from there.”

                      Why? His beef seems to be with some very specific citizens of those countries, not the countries themselves. Seems like s blunt instrument to me, but those who call this racism are either stupid or dishonest.

                      “Israel has been, IIRC, quite aggressive to those nations”
                      Oh please. Those nations ban Israeli citizens, something the left is criticising Trump for. The hypocrisy is blatant. Stop making excuses.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      The hypocrisy doesn’t actually exist. NZ left parties and individuals have been highly critical of eg: Ahmadinejad for years, including here on this blog.

                      Nice to see that when the chips are down you fall in behind your fuhrer.

                      Oh, and glass houses:

                      Trade Minister Todd McClay leads a senior-level business delegation on New Zealand’s first trade mission to Tehran in twelve years, today.

                      2.12.2016

                    • wellfedweta

                      “NZ left parties and individuals have been highly critical of eg: Ahmadinejad for years, including here on this blog.”

                      Where on this blog has there been condemnation of bans on Israeli citizens visiting the countries listed in the same manner as the vitriol against Trump? Post it, or run away and curl up in your hypocrisy.

                      [lprent: Tracing back. I see that you are continuing a diversion that has nothing to do with the post. One that I seem to remember to have already banned a couple of people for. ]

    • HDCAFriendlyTroll 2.1

      How not to be a sore loser:

      1. Accept results, no matter how much you don’t like them.
      2. Don’t blame the system just because this time the system gave you the “wrong” results. It gave you the “right” results the time before and the time before that, and the system is the same as it was before.
      3. Look at what YOU did wrong and what YOU are doing wrong.

      Not doing the above makes any protest look like the actions of a sore loser. A really bad sore loser!

    • Bill 2.2

      To paraphrase the main points in the linked article. Effective protests are –

      1 – On Point.
      2 – Multi-faceted
      3 – Enable Subsequent Actions
      4 – Pro-active (not reactive)

      I’d add a fifth and a sixth in the case of the US today

      5. Do not let the focus be Trump – keep sheeting it back to the Republican Party.
      6. Do not allow Democrats a platform.

      And to HDCAFriendlyTroll, in the interests of holding bad fuckers to account, I’d have been looking for similar widespread protests in the case of a Clinton Presidency too.

      • marty mars 2.2.1

        Nah focus on trump. He goes first then his minions will go as pence comes in with his crew. Then focus on pence and his minions.

        Focusing on parties is a nongoer because both sides will hold the coattails of the mango mussolini until they don’t need him.

        • Bill 2.2.1.1

          The risk I see in that Marty (an over-riding or exclusive focus on Trump) is that, yes Trump will be forced out or ‘let go’ by the Republican machine at some point. Then Pence comes in and does the whole conciliatory bullshit thing by resiling from Trump’s more onerous policies – people ‘go home’…and the shit keeps coming down but in more acceptable wrapping.

          But if the Republican Party are kept in the cross-hairs, (as a part of the focus) that avenue is cut off.

          And besides, Trump isn’t an anomaly any more than (say) Stalin was an anomaly. Both are/were products of, and rely/relied on, definitive political structures.

          Late edit – for clarity, I should have said that Pence will appear to resile from Trump’s more onerous policies….

          • Xanthe 2.2.1.1.1

            I totally agree bill, lay off trump…. one reason he was elected in the first place was because the dems concentrated on a personal attack on him, it backfired, will continue to backfire, and if finally they push him out… what exactly will change?

            And i would make one final point about protests, it isn’t about the protesters. Or promoting the leaders of the protest.. its supposed to be about making the rest of us think!

            • Bill 2.2.1.1.1.1

              Also, an exclusive focus on Trump (as media is doing) allows the Democrats to rehabilitate themselves too….y’know, Trump was a monstrous aberration and everything’s fine now… “Trust in us little children – you know what happens when you don’t 👿 “

            • joe90 2.2.1.1.1.2

              dems concentrated on a personal attack on him,

              Really?.

              Insults and personal attacks Trump himself directed at Hillary Clinton

              “no enthusiasm!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “unfit to serve”
              “decades of lies and scandal”
              “Crooked Hillary’s corruption is closing in”
              “Crooked”
              “Guilty – cannot run”
              “a big mistake”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “should not be allowed to run for president”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked Hillary”
              “unfit to be president”
              “Bad judgement!”
              “We must not let #CrookedHillary take her CRIMINAL SCHEME into the Oval Office”
              “Crooked”
              “launched her political career by letting terrorists off the hook”
              “Hillary said she was under sniper fire (while surrounded by USSS.) Turned out to be a total lie. She is not fit to lead our country”
              “Crooked H”
              “Crooked”
              “wants to take in as many Syrians as possible”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “FAILED ALL OVER THE WORLD”
              “loves to lie”
              “She’ll say anything and change NOTHING!”
              “Crooked”
              “a Wall Street PUPPET!”
              “Crooked”
              “has never created a job in her life”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “a foreign policy DISASTER”
              “you have failed, failed, and failed”
              “too weak to lead”
              “no solutions, no ideas, no credibility”
              “the most corrupt person to ever run for the presidency of the United States”
              “If we let Crooked run the govt, history will remember 2017 as the year America lost its independence”
              “So CROOKED”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Such a dishonest person”
              “crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “SO CORRUPT!”
              “Crooked”
              “should be in jail”
              “Crooked”
              “PAY TO PLAY POLITICS”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Fraud”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “disgraceful behavior”
              “unfit to run”
              “Crooked”
              “Hypocrite”
              “Hypocrite!”
              “nothing Hillary has said about her secret server has been true”
              “If I win-I am going to instruct my AG to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation”
              “there’s never been anything like your lies”
              “has only created jobs at the FBI and DOJ!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “nasty to Sanders supporters behind closed doors”
              “Owned by Wall St and Politicians”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “suffers from BAD JUDGEMENT!”
              “Crooked”
              “terrible!”
              “failing for 30 years”
              “not getting the job done”
              “Crooked”
              “failed all over the world”
              “a typical politician”
              “all talk, no action”
              “taking the day off again, she needs the rest”
              “copying my airplane rallies”
              “puts the plane behind her like I have been doing from the beginning”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “said horrible things about my supporters”
              “SO INSULTING to my supporters”
              “Crooked”
              “very dumb”
              “totally confused”
              “Unfit to serve as #POTUS”
              “just gave a disastrous news conference”
              “Lyin’”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “doesn’t have the strength or the stamina to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”
              “doesn’t have the drive or stamina to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “brainpower is highly overrated, decision making is so bad”
              “has BAD JUDGEMENT”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “called African-American youth “SUPER PREDATORS””
              “Crooked”
              “will NEVER be able to solve the problems of poverty, education and safety”
              “CORRUPTION”
              “SABOTAGE OF THE INNER CITIES”
              “only knows how to make a speech when it is a hit on me”
              “No policy”
              “using the oldest play in the Dem playbook”
              “using race-baiting”
              “all talk and NO ACTION!”
              “pandering to the worst instincts in our society”
              “She should be ashamed of herself!”
              “crooked”
              “lies”
              “fear-mongering!”
              “LIE!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “not a talented person or politician”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “not fit to be our next president!”
              “Anybody whose mind ‘SHORT CIRCUITS’ is not fit to be our president! Look up the word ‘BRAINWASHED.”
              “Crooked”
              “Very dangerous!”
              “bad judgment”
              “unfit to serve as President”
              “incompetent”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “A PATHOLOGICAL LIAR!”
              “Crooked”
              “100% owned by her donors”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “has very small and unenthusiastic crowds in Pennsylvania”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “a formula for disaster!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “a lose cannon”
              “extraordinarily bad judgement & insticts”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “very long and very boring speech”
              “Crooked”
              “no one has worse judgement”
              “corruption and devastation follows her”
              “owned by Wall Street!”
              “unfit to lead the country”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “wants to flood our country with Syrian immigrants that we know little or nothing about”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “incompetent”
              “a liar!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “betrayed Bernie voters”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “judgement so bad”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “not at all loyal”
              “Crooked”
              “BAD JUDGEMENT”
              “Crooked”
              “killed jobs!”
              “Crooked”
              “destroyed jobs and manufacturing”
              “Against steelworkers and miners”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “look at all of the bad decisions she has made”
              “Crooked”
              “led Obama into bad decisions!”
              “Crooked”
              “bought and paid for by Wall Street, lobbyists and special interests”
              “will sell our country down the tubes!”
              “has made so many mistakes”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “embarrassed herself and the country with her e-mail lies”
              “a DISASTER on foreign policy”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “negative ads are not true”
              “email lies”
              “fraudulent”
              “Crooked”
              “Having ZERO impact”
              “Sad!!”
              “Lyin’”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “not qualified”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “not qualified!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “WEAK leadership”
              “lies”
              “Lyin’ Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “lied to the FBI and to the people of our country”
              “sooooo guilty”
              “Crooked”
              “dishonest”
              “incompetent”
              “very bad judgement”
              “Crooked”
              “Not fit!”
              “Crooked”
              “unfit to serve as President”
              “Her temperament is weak”
              “BAD JUDGEMENT!”
              “Crooked”
              “As usual, bad judgment.”
              “A total disgrace!”
              “Crooked”
              “guilty as hell”
              “Crooked”
              “will NEVER be able to handle the complexities and danger of ISIS”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “As Bernie Sanders said, Hillary Clinton has bad judgement. Bill’s meeting was probably initiated and demanded by Hillary!”
              “sellng out America”
              “Not capable!”
              “Presidency would be catastrophic”
              “ill-fit”
              “bad judgment”
              “Lying”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “no sense of markets”
              “such bad judgement”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “bad judgement”
              “Disgraceful!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “All talk, no action!”
              “Crooked”
              “would be a disaster”
              “may be the most corrupt person ever to seek the presidency”
              “Crooked”
              “will be a disaster for jobs and the economy!”
              “defrauded America”
              “Corrupt”
              “dangerous”
              “dishonest”
              “judgement has killed thousands, unleashed ISIS and wrecked the economy”
              “failed policies”
              “bad judgment”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “totally unfit to be our president”
              “really bad judgement and a temperament”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “will be a disaster”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “total fraud!”
              “Crooked”
              “record is so bad, unable to answer tough questions!”
              “unfit to be president”
              “bad judgement”
              “poor leadership skills”
              “very bad and destructive track record”
              “Crooked”
              “Not honest!”
              “Bad performance”
              “Crooked”
              “Reading poorly from the telepromter!”
              “doesn’t even look presidential!”
              “Crooked”
              “no longer has credibility”
              “too much failure in office”
              “Crooked”
              “Lyin’”
              “Crooked”
              “has made so many mistakes”
              “Crooked”
              “BAD judgement!”
              “Crooked”
              “zero natural talent”
              “temperament is bad”
              “decision making ability-zilch!”
              “Crooked”
              “fraud”
              “very stupid use of e-mails”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “bad judgement and temperament”
              “Crooked”
              “CROOKED”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “suffers from plain old bad judgement!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “not qualified”
              “her judgement has been proven to be so bad!”
              “Would be four more years of stupidity!”
              “Wrong!”
              “reckless and dangerous”
              “Crooked”
              “very dishonest”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “has no chance!”
              “zero imagination and even less stamina”
              “ISIS, China, Russia and all would love for her to be president”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “a fraud”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “can’t close the deal with Bernie Sanders”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Can’t believe she would misrepresent the facts!”
              “Crooked”
              “Liar!”
              “Crooked”
              “can’t close the deal on Crazy Bernie”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “has bad judgment!”
              “Crooked”
              “pushing the false narrative that I want to raise taxes”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “corrupt”
              “ZERO leadership ability”
              “bad judgement”
              “Constantly playing the women’s card – it is sad!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “said she is used to “dealing with men who get off the reservation.” Actually, she has done poorly with such men!”
              “Crooked”
              “Crooked”
              “perhaps the most dishonest person to have ever run for the presidency”
              “one of the all time great enablers!”
              “Crooked”
              “unqualified to be president”
              “incompetent”
              “has been involved in corruption for most of her professional life!”
              “Who should star in a reboot of Liar Liar- Hillary Clinton or Ted Cruz? Let me know”
              “a major national security risk”
              “not presidential material”
              “such bad judgement”
              “lied last week”
              “doesn’t have the strength or stamina to be president”
              “totally flawed candidate”
              “stupidity”
              “pathetic”
              “LIED at the debate last night”
              “SAD!”
              “We need a #POTUS with great strength & stamina. Hillary does not have that”
              “lied”
              “disloyal person”
              “weak and ineffective”
              “no strength, no stamina”
              “does not have the STRENGTH or STAMINA to be President”
              “won’t call out radical Islam”
              “will be soundly defeated”
              “afraid of Obama & the emails”
              “SHE HAS NO STRENGTH OR STAMINA”
              “corruption is what she’s best at”
              “weak”
              “totally incompetent as a manager and leader”
              “no strength or stamina”
              “she looked lost”
              “her record is so bad”
              “the trade deal is a disaster, she was always for it!”
              “100% CONTROLLED”
              “Just can’t read speeches!”

              • Maui

                How do you know it was Trump ? I saw a video of a short-cropped southern guy with a long beard who was hired by the Trump team – described as having developed an effective tweet marketing model. It was innovative and professional – but I have yet to hear anyone claim it was ethical. His company was hired to do it .. I can’t remember further.
                It was the same tactic as the ‘Arab Spring’ – innovative use of new technology to achieve a desired political effect. You could describe it as a shock tactic. But democratic ?

                • joe90

                  How do you know it was Trump ?

                  Excusing the pumpkin pinochet’s vileness – that’s just sad.

                  • Maui

                    Not so. He had people working for social media companies who did the tweeting for him in a professional way – I saw one interviewed on youtube.

                    It takes time and dedication to send out so many tweets and stay on message. None of this was accidental but carefully, precisely, and persistently targeted at swinging voters.

                    It is unclear how his campaign had access to mobile numbers in such a large marketplace with many competing providers.

                    • McFlock

                      You’d have a point, if there weren’t numerous videos of him calling her “crooked” (and pretty much everything else in that tweet list) at rallies and in other campaign events.

                      It’s not like he’s been subtle about his attack lines.

                  • Maui

                    I’m not making judgements, just describing his modus operandi from what I saw on the net. It would be interesting if someone documented the campaign more throughly and made it available online, but I think there may be a few professional secrets involved. In the end, you have to improvise with what you have. We don’t live in a perfect world ..

                    • McFlock

                      Nonetheless, we can still appreciate the humour of someone saying that one reason trump won was because the dems attacked him, when the very words from his own mouth were unmitigated bile against clinton, personally.

              • Morrissey

                Projection.

          • marty mars 2.2.1.1.2

            @bill I don’t think you understand the trump phenomenon – it is a personal one, his inner circle are personal, the repugs will support him, he’ll get more personal power, he’ll become bigger than the parties and unstoppable by any legal or normal means. You won’t get rid of bannon through the repugs. No trump is the lynchpin.

            • Bill 2.2.1.1.2.1

              Just to be clear, I’m not saying that Trump shouldn’t be ‘taken out’ And I’m not saying there should be no focus on Trump. I’m saying it’s bigger and broader than just one man – that it’s a systemic or structural or cultural phenomenon.

              If you think it’s all about one man, and that everything gets fixed by just getting rid of one man (and his immediate cohorts), then we’re just going to have to agree to disagree Marty.

              • If hit1er had gone before the infrastructure around him and his toxic philosophy became embedded then it would not have grown and caused so much suffering. Same with trump. And I explicitly are saying NOT killing him. There is no one like trump next in line. If he loses power his team withers.

                • Bill

                  I’m thinking that’s a fairly simplistic take on Hitler…there are lots of ‘carts and horses’ and external factors to take into account with the rise of Nazism. But anyway.

                  And sure, I didn’t think you said Trump should be killed. Neither did I. By ‘taking out’ I was referring to neutralising him – not killing him.

                  And Trump already has political infrastructure around him and is largely building on legacies laid down by previous Presidents*… but he doesn’t have a philosophy. He’s a buffoon who brings simplicity to bear on complexity. And it’s ugly and it won’t end well.

                  * He says he’ll deport 3 million – Obama already deported more than any other President.

                  He says he’ll build a wall – the Mexican/US border is already largely fortressed

                  He says he’ll execute trade deals that favour the US – FTAs already ensured that. (Trump promised it in terms of protecting workers and jobs – that won’t happen)

                  He reinstated the gag rule – just like every previous Republican President since Reagan has done.

                  And so on…but with a recklessness and stupidity/simple mindedness that other Presidents avoided. (Which in a perverse way, is kind of refreshing – like the yellow curtain’s been pulled aside) Previous Presidents were no less mendacious, simply- how to say? – a bit more sophisticated or circumspect in their modes of execution.

                  And when the clown is gone, the world gets Pence – and pretty much nothing bar the approach/mode of execution will change.

                  • I happy to disagree with you Bill, happy that I see it different to you. And happy to consider that what I would have done to oppose hit1er and his boys is what I’m doing now to oppose trump. I can look in the mirror and feel a congruence between my values and actions. Simple really.

                    • Bill

                      And Mussolini? And Salazar? And Franco? And Pinochet? You would oppose them all by ignoring the systemic or institutional underpinnings that occasioned their rise? And you’d ignore the even wider political and cultural contexts that (in some of those cases) meant that popular support could be garnered?

                      Meanwhile, I’m reflecting on the most unpopular Presidential candidate in US election history winning an election over the second most unpopular candidate in US election history and thinking there’s maybe a bit more to all this, that it runs a bit deeper than merely swapping out the nominal top dog.

                      Why you see that as something you’re ‘happy to disagree with’ and in such a way ( it seems) that you’ll leverage your own sense of righteousness off the back of it , is a bit beyond me.

                      But hey…

                    • Yeah I don’t rate your analysis sorry.

                      Happy to stick with what I know and have ascertained.

                    • One Two []

                      ‘Knowing’ is a strong statement in ones own understandings

                      Being happy being wrong is ok too…

                    • Is it? Gd 4 u 1,2

                    • McFlock

                      “God shapes the progressive expansion of happiness”

                    • KJT

                      If there hadn’t been a Pinochet, a Shah of Iran, a Suharto, a Greek junta https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_military_junta_of_1967%E2%80%9374, a Franco, a Noriega.

                      The USA would have installed another equally suitable Dictator. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Panama#US_involvement

              • Sabine

                above all People should stop insisting that what is in Congress and Senate are Republicans. They are all – bar John Mccain and Graham Lindsay – Tea Partiers.
                the Republican Party was taken over by the TeaParty over the last 12 years.

                Its the Tea Party running the show and Trump signs every thing they put to him as even he knows that that they do have teh power to unseat him via the 25 th – mental health, or by impeachment – its not as if he did not have the one or other conflict of interest, or by death – if anyone thinks that they would not, ah. Yeah, right Tui.

                As long as he does as he is told, he will be fine. IF he does step out of line it will be Pence, a man so odious he puts light and fire to Cruz and Rubio.

      • Adrian Thornton 2.2.2

        What I am not quite sure about, in all this talk of “effective protests ‘ etc is that while we are all meant to be focused on this resistance to Trump/the Right, what about our own dysfunctional Left institutions?
        Say we all manage to create an incredible movement and somehow dislodge this threat, then what?, we are still left with our own neo liberal Left back in power, but now further entrenched and with a new found brand of credibility,

        And further, both Bill Clinton and Obama run brutal deportation operations…
        Human Rights Watch report…
        https://www.hrw.org/news/2016/04/25/us-20-years-immigrant-abuses

        ….didn’t see too much opposition from the Left Party’s back then, so you see my point, get rid of Trump, of course. but lets clean our own back yard first.

        I for one am not going to expend my fighting power on re establishing the neo liberal centrists back into power, especially when the writing is clearly on the wall for them now.

        Turn Labour Left.

        • Bill 2.2.2.1

          Liberalism isn’t of the left. Never has been and never will be. Effective protests have to take account of that fact. (Many disagree)

          • weka 2.2.2.1.1

            And yet many liberals are left wing, and many left wingers would call themselves liberal.

            • Bill 2.2.2.1.1.1

              There is not a left wing liberal anywhere and there never has been. That’s very much tied into – is inseparable from the meaning of liberalism in a political context.

              Being open minded about sexual or cultural or whatever other ‘difference’ might be charactarised as being liberal minded, and that’s got nothing whatsoever to do with liberalism as a political concept.

              So are there liberal minded people who ascribe to left politics? Yes. Are they then liberals? No.

              • weka

                Lots of people in NZ identify themselves as liberal and left wing. Maybe use Liberal for people who are into Liberalism then?

                • Bill

                  I see what you’re saying and what not, but to go a bit further, I can’t see how a person could be lacking in a ‘live and let live’ attitude (ie – liberal) and be left wing in any meaningful way.

                  So, “liberal left wing” is akin to talking of the “big huge elephant”. (There’s a term for that that I can’t remember)

                  But then there are the intransigent ‘knuckle-headed’ cultists who claim to be more left wing and pure than anyone else, but who are no more left wing than Genghis bloody Khan.

                  Just typing thoughts out loud btw.

                  Capitalisation could work if the meanings are unknown to too many people.

                  • weka

                    “(There’s a term for that that I can’t remember)”

                    Me neither (something about stating what is obvious in the other word?).

                    The problem is political confusion. If people are seeing the idea of liberal being attacked, that needs more nuance in the presentation than I’m seeing (not you specifically, but in general esp in the US). If ‘liberal’ is going to be a dirty word, then we need to be bloody careful about how that gets presented.

                    I’d hazard a guess that most people don’t know what Liberalism is in the way you are using it. By most, I mean for instance Kiwis (you’d hope that in political circles the % would be much higher). There will be people who have a general or vague idea. In NZ I would say most people still think of liberal as progressive or left wing, but that could be changing with the focus on US politics.

                    • riffer

                      That would be a tautology.

                      tautology
                      tɔːˈtɒlədʒi/Submit
                      noun
                      the saying of the same thing twice over in different words, generally considered to be a fault of style (e.g. they arrived one after the other in succession ).
                      synonyms: repetition, repetitiveness, repetitiousness, reiteration, redundancy, superfluity, periphrasis, iteration, duplication; More
                      a phrase or expression in which the same thing is said twice in different words.
                      plural noun: tautologies
                      LOGIC
                      a statement that is true by necessity or by virtue of its logical form.

                    • KJT

                      Liberal, in the sense that Bill is using it, is almost useless as a term.
                      It has been co-opted and corrupted so much that, to most of us, it is misleading.

                      In the same way as Neo-liberals are not liberal at all. Happy with authoritarianism to preserve their “right” to make money. The support for more cops and jails, for ordinary people, combined with opposition to laws against white collar crime, tax evasion and misuse of power.

                      I suspect that the more correct term now would be “libertarian”.
                      Absolute freedom for the lucky to screw the rest of us.

                    • weka

                      That’s the one riffer, cheers.

                      KJT, last year I decided we were in the age of the politics of confusion. Lately liberal appears to be being used to refer to people who are supportive of progressive politics but don’t want the end of capitalism. People that voted Clinton. Bill and adam tie this into economic and sociopolitical theory from the last century or so. I point out that in NZ liberal means progressive to non-politico types. Not sure that libertarianism is the right word for what Bill is talking about because Libertarianism in NZ is the politics of the extreme end of neoliberalism. And on and on it goes 😉

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    The RWNJ party in Australia call themselves the Liberal Party. They mean the freedom of the individual to do whatever they want with no restriction or regulation and tend to view ‘property rights’ as more absolute than human rights.

          • Adrian Thornton 2.2.2.1.2

            I haven’t seen to much evidence of ” Effective protests have to take account of that fact” which is exactly my point.

            Protesting Trump without addressing our own serious political problems on the Left first, is like us here in NZ going on about saving Whales, pointing out finger at the Japanese Whalers, all the while allowing the breeding and releasing trout, a aggressive territorial predator and foreign intruder, into our own rivers, helping to seal the ultimate extinction of our own Native fish, not just a little bit hypocritical.

        • Psycho Milt 2.2.2.2

          I for one am not going to expend my fighting power on re establishing the neo liberal centrists back into power, especially when the writing is clearly on the wall for them now.

          Thus illustrating how the perfect is the enemy not only of the good, but also of the least-worst outcome.

          • Adrian Thornton 2.2.2.2.1

            I don’t understand what you mean?

            • McFlock 2.2.2.2.1.1

              It means that the little Dutch boy who cut off their right hand because it offended them found himself in a pickle when the dyke sprung a second leak.

            • Psycho Milt 2.2.2.2.1.2

              “The perfect is the enemy of the good” means that if you reject a good outcome because you demand a perfect one, you may end up with an outcome that’s neither perfect nor good.

              In terms of electing Democrat governments in the USA or Labour governments in NZ, the outcome can be better described as “least-worst” than “good,” but the same applies: if you reject the least-worst because you demand the perfect, what you’re likely to end up with is the most-worst, here exemplified in the figure of President Donald J. Trump.

              • adam

                But trump is very far from worst nightmare. I can think of many worse case scenarios. But then again I have read a fair amount of dystopian literature. He is bad that is not up for discussion.

                But this least perfect argument seems like you putting absolutes around peoples arguments to score points. Or worse defending the system at any cost and shutting down any discussion which challenges the status quo. Or questions the official narrative.

                Mind you, nothing new from you on that front. So more of the same, you will pick somthing someone says – then take it out of context and attack them with it?

                Silly question, are you a liberal or a socialist or some other thing today? Look forward to what you will morph into tomorrow. Chin, chin.

                • McFlock

                  seriously?

                  It’s a pretty simple point that was made. There’s no need to contort yourself to avoid addressing it.

                  • adam

                    Really, that your argument. It’s serious point to always go for the lesser option and never have a discussion on what could be better? If this is ‘the’ argument that is ‘serious’ what a sad day this is.

                    • McFlock

                      Discuss, by all means.

                      But if ranting against the best option available likely results in the worst option available being elected, maybe learn to chillax.

                    • adam

                      Come on McFlock, to say voting for the somthing bad because it’s better than somthing else bad, is a b.s argument no matter how nicely you want to dress it up.

                      But what is worse, is that this style of diminishing returns politics is what so many on the left are happy with. And they wonder why they can’t engage people.

                    • McFlock

                      Your point only stands if the bads are equivalently bad. Otherwise one evil is less evil than the other, by definition.

                      “Diminishing returns” means the same amount of effort gets less results. We’re talking about “loss minimisation”.

                      I don’t even know if there’s an economic parallel to what you’re advocating, which is to spend so much effort attacking the mediocre that the really bad get in.

                • Yeah, I’m trying to “shut down any discussion” by making comments that then get discussed by multiple people. Maybe I should re-think my strategy.

                  Silly question, are you a liberal or a socialist or some other thing today?

                  Meh – I don’t know much about ideology, but I know what I like. To Kiwiblog commenters I’m a socialist because I want a unionised workforce, a strong public sector and a comprehensive social welfare system, and to Standard commenters I’m a liberal because I want people to take some responsibility for their actions, and to be able to start and run their own business with the minimum of government interference. The ideological inconsistency may annoy actual socialists and liberals, but I don’t think I’m particularly unusual for a leftist.

              • Adrian Thornton

                @Psycho Milt, I completely reject your analysis…
                “If you reject the least-worst because you demand the perfect, what you’re likely to end up with is the most-worst, here exemplified in the figure of President Donald J. Trump.”
                The reason Trump exists as potus is not because clear thinking idealists tried to bring a new voice and reason into politics via Sanders, no the reasons are exactly the opposite, because so many lazy thinking lefties didn’t challenge the centre left free market status quo, didn’t hold our own left leaders and parties and media to the fire and demand more from them, and were prepared to take any old bullshit line from them. as long as they, themselves were comfortable…that is the reason Trump is in the White House.

                And now to cry wolf, what a fucking joke, except it is not all that funny.

                Yes I demand something better from the Left political institutions that I support, they should stand for something that I and people want to really fight for,and I make no apology’s for that.

                No what I just can’t understand, is how low so many on the left have set their bar, it’s pathetic, sad and frustrating.

                • I wasn’t referring to the efforts to get Bernie Sanders nominated – that was a joy to watch and it would have been great if it had succeeded. It’s more that when things don’t turn out how we would have liked, and the candidate is Hillary Clinton, it’s counter-productive to disavow further involvement because Clinton isn’t left enough. Doing that results in a much worse outcome than President Hillary Clinton.

                  • Adrian Thornton

                    Look I can understand anyone who wanted to vote foe Clinton, some people whom I hold in upmost respect did just that.
                    However I guess I am just sick and tied of having no political representation from my own party, so I have got to that stage where I had to draw a line in the sand, based on my own moral compass, and I am just not prepared to support neo liberal free market politics anymore with my vote, wether if I where in the US and now here in NZ.

                    • Macro

                      And you, and everyone else, will pay the price for that.
                      We now have a person, who is clearly unfit for the office, thinking he can run a Nation of 300+ million by tweets and special decree, and throwing tantrums when people dare to criticize. If it wasn’t the fact that this is the most sensitive job in the whole world – I wouldn’t give a toss and say “Well Yankees! You voted for him – You live with it!” But unfortunately his irrationality affects the whole world, as we have just witnessed, and the unpredictability of his behaviour could send us all into Global warfare.

          • Macro 2.2.2.2.2

            Thus illustrating how the perfect is the enemy not only of the good, but also of the least-worst outcome.

            Quoted for Truth.

            • Siobhan 2.2.2.2.2.1

              Re the quote…You guys spend too much time reading self help psychology blogs…I’m pretty sure no one here is talking about wanting political ‘perfection’, just something that’s worth voting for.

              As you may have noticed, the Left aren’t exactly managing that very well these days.

            • Adrian Thornton 2.2.2.2.2.2

              Are you implying that people who felt they couldn’t vote for Clinton because of her own mountain of flaws, who didn’t vote for her because she and the DNC where more interested in courting hard core republican war hawks, I could go on and on, are you implying that they are at fault and are responsible for Trump?
              If you are, you are an idiot, but if you didn’t mean that, I then apologize for calling you an idiot.

              • I’m saying people who decided they couldn’t vote for Clinton had a choice between Clinton and Trump, and they chose Trump – whether by actively voting for him or just by abstaining is irrelevant. I wouldn’t use words like “fault” or “responsible,” but individual voters’ choices do affect the outcome – that’s the whole point.

                • Adrian Thornton

                  I was actually answering Marco in relation to the idiot comment.

                  Individual choices of course effect outcomes, I couldn’t agree more.
                  So lets follow the time line of the US primaries, while Sanders was running, and after he was defeated.
                  We all wanted him to win, and it was obvious he was suffering from massive press misinformation and distortion, mainly from Liberal MSM.
                  Then he gets beaten, we all suffer a bit of pain, but most could of us could (theoretically of course )probably be persuaded to vote Clinton, maybe while holding your nose, but you know take one for the team..
                  But Clinton, after beating Sanders, by her own choices proceeded to do some of the following…
                  1. Straight away, instead of inviting the highly motivated progressives to join her, or have a seat at her table, out right rejected them.
                  Instead at that crucial moment, Clinton chose instead to welcome the endorsements of some of the most hard core Republican war hawks on the planet.
                  2. When Wasserman Schultz got basically fired “after a leak of internal DNC emails showed officials actively favoring Hillary Clinton during the presidential primary and plotting against Clinton’s rival, Bernie Sanders”
                  Clinton hired her the same day!
                  3, After Donna Brazile got fired from CNN after she used her position to pass questions to the Clinton campaign before the debates, she was unbelievably retained as DNC vice chair, a position she still holds.

                  I could add more, but you get the drift, it was her choice to shift to the Right, instead of conceding just a little to the progressive movement and bring them on board, it was her choice to protect publicly corrupt officials, not to mention she managed her campaign ( in the later stages) with an arrogance seldom seen…so if you want to blame anyone for Trump, blame Clinton and her DNC stooges, they lost the most winnable election the DNC ever got offered.

  2. Andre 3

    Peter Thiel is without doubt a very smart guy. But it appears he’s also prone to the Dunning-Kruger effect. Seems he’s got input into appointing the FDA leadership, and he’s got dangerously misguided ideas about how the FDA should change. Such as not requiring big pharma to show their products do what they claim they do.

    http://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2017/1/31/14364090/peter-thiel-fda-trump-silicon-valley-oneill-gulfo-srinivasan-gottlieb

    • Bill 3.1

      Seeing as how drug companies get to pick and choose which drug trial results they forward to the FDA, and do not have to make their other trial results public, it’s fair to say that they already do not necessarily show their drugs to be either safe or effective.

      And Thiel rushes off in precisely the wrong direction.

      • Andre 3.1.1

        Yeah, there’s the problem of cherry-picking studies for approval. Then there’s the problem of once a drug is approved for one thing, it becomes much easier to sell it for “off-label” uses.

        Personally I’ve got a policy that I won’t consider using a medication that hasn’t been on the market for at least ten years. So when I was really struggling with migraines and the quack was pushing sumatriptan that had just come out, I wasn’t interested. Although that policy might disappear pretty quick if I ever got a genuinely threatening condition with no good existing treatments but a promising new medication.

      • Sabine 3.1.2

        There is a lot of things that are wrong with Peter Thiel. But, he is a money man, will do anything for money, and above all will always have money to leave the US and go to a country where the future of Health Care is not based on prayer and faith.

    • katipo 3.2

      “Everything Wrong with Peter Thiel’s Doomsday Survival Plan”…
      https://www.outsideonline.com/2152476/everything-thats-wrong-billionaires-doomsday-survival-plan

  3. dv 4

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/88957414/bill-english-legally-cant-live-in-premier-house

    It’s illegal for Prime Minister Bill English to live in Premier House, the official prime ministerial residence.

    In a quirk of the law, English isn’t allowed access to taxpayer-funded accommodation in the capital – because he’s based there.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10588814

    Deputy Prime Minister Bill English has decided to pay back part of his ministerial housing allowance to Ministerial Services, saying that as Finance Minister he had to lead by example.

    He will receive an accommodation allowance on the same basis as out of town MPs who live in Wellington.

    Sort of ironic after he double dipped on accommodation some yeas ago.

    • Rosemary McDonald 4.1

      yes…the loopholes must be exploited.

      This article from 2009….http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10588653

      “National also released material that showed rents paid for ministerial homes currently range from $24,000 a year to $41,000. Those rents under Labour ranged from $31,000 to $36,000.

      The information also listed Ministerial Services as leasing Mr English’s home for $36,400 a year.

      Mr Key yesterday defended his ministers and said they deserved their taxpayer-funded Wellington homes, considering the demands of their jobs and stresses on families.

      But he said he wasn’t happy with the rules that covered their claims and has called for a review of what he considered to be “arcane” regulations.

      Mr Key said he had placed a cap on ministerial rental claims at $700 a week, which equates to $36,400 – the same as the cost of Mr English’s house to the taxpayer.

      Mr English said he welcomed the review and any changes that came from it.”

      …..and look! Here’s that fellow Wayne Mapp….claiming his $700 per week while at the same time being paid $400 per week by Parliamentary services for rent on his trust owned flat….

      Defence Minister Wayne Mapp said his previous apartment had been very small and was not suitable for him and his wife now he was spending more time in Wellington as a minister.

      He confirmed the apartment was owned by his superannuation trust and was rented to National MP Bakshi Singh for $400 a week.

      As an MP, Mr Singh can claim up to $24,000 year in accommodation costs from Parliamentary Service.

      Dr Mapp also collected around $700 a week for his new larger apartment and said he could see why his rental income should be used to offset his expense claims.

      “I can see why people have concerns and the review will deal with that,’ Dr Mapp said.”

      You can Wayne? Really? Honestly?

      Do you ever look back Wayne and, you know, get that cringey feeling like…”I maybe shouldn’t have done that…makes me look like a grasping, greedy, privileged prick.” ?

      • Wayne 4.1.1

        I think you will find that most Ministers now stay in their original apartments, rather than taking ministerial apartments.

        The ministerial apartment concept dated back to the times when overseas visitors (ministers etc) were entertained in Minister’s homes. That is not what happens now with the diversity of Wellington restaurants.

        I ended up relinquishing the Ministerial apartment after 12 months and went back to my small apartment in Kelvin Chambers. Mr Singh went elsewhere.

        It was not double dipping. If I own an apartment, no-one would reasonably expect me to supply it to a tenant for free. But that was too hard to explain. As they say, “explaining is loosing”.

        • Rosemary McDonald 4.1.1.1

          “I think you will find that most Ministers now stay in their original apartments, rather than taking ministerial apartments.”

          I hope the strangling from the loophole being closed was not too painful Wayne.

          “”Explaining is losing.””

          Spoken like a true blue elitist.

          One day, Wayne, the words you and your ilk have uttered will come back to bite you.

        • Sabine 4.1.1.2

          Mate it might be legal, but its still wrong.

          Its not that anyone expect you to ‘supply’ your apartment for free, its that that income derived of the apartment should be taxed and offset against any benefits you may wish to claim.

          Hence why so many people actually consider you guys to be no moral role model.
          You guys are legal double dippers while at the same time you would cut some poor schmucks 5.5 $ for a sandwich.

          Vile.

        • DoublePlusGood 4.1.1.3

          Are you going to pay back the tax payer for your 12 months of bludging?

    • GregJ 4.2

      Sort of ironic after he double dipped on accommodation some yeas ago.

      Which today’s Stuff article was noticeably silent about I note.

  4. Sanctuary 5

    Listening to how assured Greg O’Conner was dealing with Guyon Espiner this morning on NatRad really highlighted to me how clueless the average Labour MP is, and thus how awful Labour’s candidate selection process clearly is, constantly promoting the talentless hacks of various factions (like Clare Curran and Sue Moroney) and incumbency protection of hopeless timeservers (Ruth Dyson and Trevor Mallard) over people who might actually be good politicians. The thing is, if you have effective politicians like O’Connor who increase your vote, it actually increases the chances of less effective politicians, but very talented people, like Deborah Russell (or even a Liz Marvelly) getting into parliament on the rising tide.

    • Ad 5.1

      Bit early. One interview does not a winner make.

      • tc 5.1.1

        Yup but the points about dullards and careerists such as Dyson, curran, mallard etc are spot on before we get onto white ants like Nash eating it out from inside sniping and generally being the twat he is.

        You don’t see the Nats pushing their dead wood in front of issues, they push them out the back door, perception of renewal V listening to curran on technology ffs.

    • Xanthe 5.2

      Neither greg nor liz . They are both dishonest bullshitters pushing divisive lines , they may well bring votes but they will drive yet more away and those votes will not return

      • Ethica 5.2.1

        The right is obviously worried about the talented people willing to put their names forward to change the government. Those who have been there a while are acting as efficient and encouraging mentors. Together they are building momentum.

    • Red 5.3

      Liz Marvelly talented , cough, why ? Possible if based on Tamati weather man threshold of achievements

  5. Carolyn_nth 6

    Shit hitting the fan for Trump:

    SEAL, American Girl Die in First Trump-Era U.S. Military Raid

    In what an official said was the first military raid carried out under President Donald Trump, two Americans were killed in Yemen on Sunday — one a member of SEAL Team 6 and the other the 8-year-old daughter of Anwar al-Awlaki, the New Mexico-born al Qaeda leader who himself was killed in a U.S. strike five years ago.

    Some different opinions about whether the raid resulted in non-combatant or combatant (Al Qaeda) women, plus children in the raid.

    This tweet by Avi Ashi-Schapiro

    Reporter asks @PressSec if Trump still plans to kill families of terrorists (US killed 8 yr old Nora Awlaki last week)—Spicer doesn’t answer

    • Bill 6.1

      And the difference between not saying you intend to kill families of terrorists but droning wedding parties, and saying you will is…?

      In my book one is as bad as the other. Trump’s just a bit more distasteful in terms of polite dinner conversation. I mean, we’d prefer to identify with the ‘good guys’…and allow our civilised selves an ‘out’ by pointing to ‘mistakes’, right?

      • joe90 6.1.1

        And the difference between not saying you intend to kill families of terrorists but droning wedding parties, and saying you will is…?

        IMO, Steve Bannon, a militant Catholic religious extremist who seems to be in the early stages of taking control of the US war machine and believes we’re at the very beginning stages of a very brutal and bloody conflict.

      • Sabine 6.1.2

        We got month of people telling us about Killary, Oblamblam Hopey Changey, and all the other assorted bullshite, while people like mineself and others were trying desperately to argue that it does not matter who will win, they all will end up killing for resources and geo political power.

        We got month after month of people telling those of us us that were not Trumpsters (after Bernie lost) that we are Killary Lovers, and others bullshit just because we were trying to point out why we think – apart from the sameness that we expect in foreign relations – that maybe people should look beyond and see what Trump has in store for the US.

        and now we have a ‘failed’ state in the making, a ‘democracy’ being flushed down the drain and we will end up with the same old same old, Trump will continue with the Wars started under the Republican Persident George W Bush – but to boot we now have a nuclear power run by a fucking madman with loyality issues and a religiously inspired bunch of fuckwits and a population that soon enough will stay at home for fear of being arrested.

        This is not about ‘good guys’ and ‘bad guys’ this is about two ‘bad choices’ of whom one was not quite as bad and odious as the other.

        SO no i don’t identify with good or bad, i identify with what is longterm the best choice for myself, for my family, for my country. And sadly for the world, Trump is the worst that we could have gotten. But i guess if he starts ‘ww63’ it will be a gooder war then if Hillary would have started it, right?

        • Bill 6.1.2.1

          …bunch of fuckwits and a population that soon enough will stay at home for fear of being arrested.

          No. Or at least, we’ll see. As I said prior to the election, a good that could possibly come from a Trump win, was that the left would be able to come together and be galvanised in a way that wouldn’t be possible under a Clinton Presidency.

          On other portions of your comment, there are plenty of people who have held to some strange notion of the US as being essentially benevolent. Not a notion I ever held. Seems you didn’t and don’t either.

          • Sabine 6.1.2.1.1

            sorry mate, but i don’t share your optimism.

            i consider no government to be essentially benevolent. That is not what most people want in their government. They essentially want a ‘benevoelnt dictator’ that will make the trains run on time, keep the ‘unwashed masses’ in place.
            And essentially that is what quite a few people have advocated for here, lets watch him pivot, see he is just a show man, blahblahblahblahblahblahblah.

            I guess the collective guild education that i got in Germany made me cynical, but in saying that, “WE” the “Left” should maybe start defining a. what is the left, b. and what does the left want.

            Cause there is one thing for sure, in the month leading up to the election I was not considered ‘left’ by a bunch of very vocal posters here.

            but yeah, not sharing your optimism.

            • Bill 6.1.2.1.1.1

              My optimism might be misplaced. But until some time has passed and some events have unfolded, there’s really no way to say one way or the other.

              • Sabine

                well one can always check the history books.
                i base my pessimism on what the man said, on what he did and does and put out an educated guess. 🙂

                • Bill

                  By ‘the man’, you mean Trump? My optimism is for people mounting an indefatigable, and hopefully pro-active, opposition.

                  • Sabine

                    yep. the man. in the sense of the world. and mounting an opposition works in a democracy but not in a totalitarian state.

      • McFlock 6.1.3

        The difference is that the first option involves you bombing a random wedding party because your fucked up tactic is so impractical that you widen the targeting scope to include “crowds where my suspected terrorist might be”.

        Whereas Trump said he’d bomb the wedding parties even if he knew for a fact no terrorists were there.

        And I suspect the number of wedding parties being bombed will increase, as well.

      • Psycho Milt 6.1.4

        And the difference between not saying you intend to kill families of terrorists but droning wedding parties, and saying you will is…?

        …the difference between engaging in military action knowing that it’s likely some civilians will be killed, and engaging in military action that deliberately targets civilians for the purpose of killing them. Which is one of the major differences that the concept of war crimes is built on, and is accepted throughout the world as a very significant difference. Are you genuinely saying you don’t accept it exists?

        • Bill 6.1.4.1

          Straw man bullshit there PM.

          To expand on my reply to McFlock – I was over focusing on the hypocrisy of targeting/killing families while purporting to only target/kill terrorists.

    • joe90 6.2

      Spicer doesn’t answer

      Rule #1: Believe the autocrat. He means what he says.

      We have to take out their families.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WWiaYQUV2oM

    • reason 6.3

      …. and so it goes on and on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TN4Sn5u_pK0

      I wonder when they will kill the Grandfather ……

      The u.s.a govt is worse than the mafia …………

  6. Agora 7

    I have just received a letter from Attorney-General Christopher Finlayson on
    “ridding all introduced predators by 2050“ .. mentioning rats, stoats, and possums.

    He states that “a new government company will be formed .. to develop predator eradication programs”. We have had them for years.

    The wording is general enough to imply that there are predators in Miramar besides small and furry ones.

    It closes with a survey to “help .. inform our policies and targets”, concluding that “the project will require a massive effort from our communities”.

    On the other side it asks for environmental priorities, rankings of electoral issues for importance, and who you support politically.

    Sorry Chris, I won’t be returning mine.

    • mpledger 7.1

      Yea, it’s a fishing expedition for party affiliation and support. He’s obviously trying to decide if he’s going to stand in the electorate again.

    • veutoviper 7.2

      Finlayson has been testing the waters with Rongotai electorate voters for the last two years, since shortly after the 2014 election. I and my neighbours/friends in the electorate have had phone calls/surveys from National staff members supporting Finlayson and also letters seeking views on issues, priorities etc.

      Previously, my experience had been that Finlayson made very minimal attempts to engage with voters in the electorate over the many years he has run in the electorate, and that he has been almost distainful of such engagement.

      My cynical reaction to his ‘sudden’ change in approach has been to tell the callers where to go and why (and i know many others who have done the same regardless of their political leanings) , and to not bother returning the questionnaires.

      I could be generous and say that in the past he has stepped back to allow his cousin, Annette King, a clear run, but don’t actually believe that, knowing how arrogant he is.

      Obviously a fishing expedition but I am not so sure that it is to decide whether he will stand in the electorate again because as I say above, the fishing expedition has been long running for about two years and not one just starting now in the run-up to the 2017 election.

  7. Glenn 8

    A humorous message to Trump in his own words from the Dutch.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELD2AwFN9Nc

    • greywarshark 8.1

      Thanks Glenn I enjoyed that. Then I listened to Seth Meyer and he ran down Billy Joel and The Piano Man. That’s really unforgivable.

  8. The Chairman 9

    Chlöe Swarbrick has put her name forward to run as the Greens’ candidate in Auckland Central.

    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2017/01/former-mayoral-hopeful-chl-e-swarbrick-has-sights-on-auckland-central.html 

    If selected, could she do for the Greens what Jacinda failed to do for Labour – beat Nikki Kaye?

    Who will Labour stand? Should they stand-down to give the Greens a better chance?

    • Rosemary McDonald 9.1

      Your link doesn’t work for me…but try this from the Herald….http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11746176

      Chloe states…””I have always voted Greens,” the 22-year-old said after confirming her candidacy this morning.

      “I just affiliate with what they do and I’m on board with their policies and their values.””

      By my reckoning she will have at most been able to vote for the Greens in one election…hardly qualifies as “always”.

      I’m not slagging this very young candidate…but she must be more careful with her wording.

      Creates altogether the wrong impression.

      Yes, I do set very high standards…I’ve had a gutsful of veneered candidates.

      • The Chairman 9.1.1

        Try this one (link).

        http://tinyurl.com/jrgam4l

        “I’m not slagging this very young candidate…but she must be more careful with her wording.”

        Indeed.

      • weka 9.1.2

        I had to laugh at that too, because it’s a line I use (mine is I’ve always voted to the left of Labour because there were no Greens when I started voting). But that’s 11 elections 😉

    • Should they stand-down to give the Greens a better chance?

      Why would they do that? It’s not like the Green Party desperately needs an electorate seat to remain in Parliament.

      • The Chairman 9.2.1

        “Why would they do that?”

        To prevent splitting the vote, allowing National to win the seat.

        • ScottGN 9.2.1.1

          So what if National wins the seat? It’s the party vote that counts and both Labour and the Greens should be campaigning hard for that vote in every electorate.

          • The Chairman 9.2.1.1.1

            “So what if National wins the seat?”

            I suspect left leaning voters of Auckland Central would prefer a left leaning candidate to represent the electorate.

        • McFlock 9.2.1.2

          MMP refresher.

          Why would anyone outside Auckland Central care who the Auckland Central MP is?

          • The Chairman 9.2.1.2.1

            Winning such a seat (Auckland Central) would help boost the Greens political standing/prominence.

            • McFlock 9.2.1.2.1.1

              Not really. They already have sufficient standing/prominence. People know who they are.

              They already have 14 mps. They’ve had electorate seats before. If swarbrick wins because Labour stood back, she’s not a giant-killer so no increase there. If labgrn split the vote so the nat gets in, it doesn’t affect the overall outcome. But if lab stand back and the nat still wins, then the nat looks like the giant killer and gets boosted “prominence”.

              Your plan has no upside if it succeeds and no downside if it’s ignored, but a downside if it fails.

              • The Chairman

                I wouldn’t call having 14 MPs sufficient. Double that and you may have a point.

                Moreover, it’s been sometime since they last held an electoral seat.

                If Labour were to stand-down and avert splitting the vote resulting in Swarbrick winning against National, it would still be largely perceived as an accomplishment. The added positive media attention wouldn’t go a miss.

                If the left vote is split and National win, it will rob the left of that electoral seat.

                National beating the Greens wouldn’t be seen by many as a major accomplishment. The Greens are clearly the underdog, thus a win as such would help further boost their prominence.

                By the way, It’s not my plan, I merely asked the question.

                • McFlock

                  Everyone knows who the greens are. They don’t need gimmicks for “prominence” like an electorate contest. They fight on policy, and they have a solid support base.

                  You talk about “added positive media attention”. Are you joking? All they’ll get is comparisons with Epsom gift seats, especially from the media. “Underdogs” don’t get credit if their opponent is being ganged up on.

                  Robbed of an electoral seat? If the only point to winning an electoral seat is “added prominence”, then that’s the most the left lose. A little bit of “prominence”. I guess they’ll have to have pretty good campaigners and policies then – lucky that.

                  If you’re not asking about your plan, who’s plan was it? Where did you get this pointless idea to question?

                  • The Chairman

                    An electorate contest is not a gimmick. Electorate MPs have serious undertakings representing the local constituents of their electorate. Therefore, it’s largely the local left leaning constituents that lose if the electorate seat goes to National. Being the underdog, the Greens have little to lose.

                    Winning an electorate seat can help get the party’s message out while helping to boost a party’s profile. Hence, one of the reasons the Greens are standing.

                    The Greens didn’t stand in the recent Mt Roskill by election, yet despite that Labour’s victory largely received glowing media coverage.

                    Moreover, Labour standing-down in Auckland Central (if they decided too) would be the party’s own individual decision as was with the Greens standing-down in Mt Roskill.

                    There has been discussion of whether or not Labour and the Greens should do electoral deals. I was wondering what the larger sentiment was/is? Hence the question.

                    • McFlock

                      Having a good campaign boosts the party’s profile. Actually winning an electorate is neither here nor there unless there is a major upset.

                      So now you’re asking “won’t anyone think of the constituents”? Well, standing a candidate lets the constituents choose, rather than having a deal foisted on them by the party that they’re expected to swallow.

                      How much of this “discussion” has come from someone other than you? How much of it has come from commenters who seem aligned with labour or greens or even farther left?

                  • The Chairman

                    Of course having a good campaign is all part and parcel. The Greens winning against National in Auckland Central is far from expected, thus would be seen as an upset.

                    I wasn’t asking. I was highlighting what you overlooked, the impact on local constituents.

                    And again, if Labour decided to stand-down, it would be their own individual decision, therefore, countering your foisted deal assertion.

                    Labour and the Greens have recently had discussions about this (doing electoral deals). However, they’ve ruled it out. This has spurred wider discussions.

                    Seeing as electoral deals are within the rules, the opposition does it and it could be of benefit (at this stage the days of Labour winning alone are long behind us). I don’t see why Labour refuses to take advantage.

                    • McFlock

                      Well maybe you should go back to the discussion that’s already been had in order to answer the question.

                      Of course if the party makes a decision about where to run it’s foisting that decision on its voters in that electorate. They can’t choose to vote for a nonexistent candidate.

                      But either way you’re the only one who indicates that this is a serious question. Which I suspect is because you still don’t understand mmp

                  • The Chairman

                    The Green’s and Labour’s discussion has concluded.

                    Of course it is a serous issue. Deals could and do change election outcomes.

                    The obvious example is Epsom and Nationals deal with ACT.

                    However, if they were willing, Labour and the Greens could do a deal not to stand in Epsom and advise their supporters to support National, effectively keeping ACT out.

                    A deal in Ohariu could potentially keep Dunne out. Deals in these two electorates could result in robbing National of its support partners.

                    For you not to consider this a serious issue suggests it’s you that fails to understand the workings of MMP.

                    Political parties make decisions regarding all manner of things. Therefore, all manner of things can and are foisted upon us. However, if Labour decided to stand-down, it would be their own individual decision, thus not a “foisted deal” as you initially asserted.

                    • McFlock

                      Epsom is an issue because without it ACT would have zero parliamentary presence. The Greens have 14 mps without an electorate mp. If they did have an electorate mp, they would still only have 14 mps.

                      Everyone else understands that, why don’t you?

                      It would be Labour’s decision, and the voters would have to lump it. The decision would be foisted on the voters. As I said “Well, standing a candidate lets the constituents choose, rather than having a deal foisted on them by the party[…]”.

                    • The Chairman

                      “So just to be clear, if Labour choose to not stand a candidate so the Green has a chance of winning, it’s foisting that decision on voters who would have preferred the choice, rather than foisting a deal on voters who would have liked the choice? That’s really what you’re attempting to parse, not whether whateverthefuckitwas has been foisted on the voters?”

                      No.

                      “More seats” means an overhang, and that only happens if the number of electorate seats a party gains exceeds the seats they would receive as a proportion of the party vote.”

                      I’ve already pointed that out to you above.

                      “If the greens win an electorate seat, they will only have an electorate seat and 13 list seats, rather than 14 list seats.”

                      Depends on what percentage of the party vote they secure. Additionally, if they decide to contest more electorate seats, they may win more seats than their share of the party vote.

                      “You’re “question” about Auckland central in no way would change the composition of parliament on numbers of seats each party gets”. 

                      That wasn’t my argument in regards to Auckland Central.

                      “There is no second bite at the apple”

                      You are highlighting you poor understanding again. The party vote allows one bite. Seeking the electoral vote gives you two as a party could possibly exceed it’s party vote and secure more seats through the overhang.

                      As explained above, my question was an attempt to gauge the larger sentiment.

                      If you think it’s stupid to act strategically and keep the opposition from winning Auckland Central, that’s your prerogative. I’ll put you down as a no.

                    • McFlock

                      So now you want Labour to stand back on a dozen seats in the hope that the greens can get an overhang if they maintain their party vote?

                      This gets better and better.

                      Acting strategically is good. But it only works if your strategy matches the situation and constraints of reality, not some half-arsed misunderstanding of the electoral rules.

                  • The Chairman

                    If the Greens (or any party for that matter) win more electorate seats than their share of the party vote they retain those seats as it results in a overhang.

                    ACT having zero parliamentary presence robs National of their support and ability to leverage off their harder right stance. Which would be a result from a decision a number of left leaning voters wouldn’t mind having foisted upon them.

                    I wasn’t disputing it would be foisted upon them, I was disputing your assertion of a foisted deal.

                    • McFlock

                      What agency do voters have in deciding whether Labour runs a candidate? None. It would be a foisted decision.

                      As for the overhang, if the greens got 15 electorate seats but only 11% of the vote, yes there’d be an overhang. But you’re only talking about one electorate.

                      ACT get seats because they don’t score enough for any representatives in parliament.

                  • The Chairman

                    Clearly I wasn’t using the overhang as an example for Auckland Central alone. The benefits of that have already been discussed above.

                    The overhang was something you overlooked in your haste to imply I have no understanding of the workings of MMP.

                    It would be a foisted decision, yes . A foisted deal, no.

                    There is no guarantee what percentage of the party vote a party will secure, therefore standing candidates gives parties another bite at the apple so to speak. Increasing the odds of securing more seats.

                    However, in saying that, in some cases it can also be strategically more beneficial not to stand a candidate.

                    • McFlock

                      🙄

                      So just to be clear, if Labour choose to not stand a candidate so the Green has a chance of winning, it’s foisting that decision on voters who would have preferred the choice, rather than foisting a deal on voters who would have liked the choice? That’s really what you’re attempting to parse, not whether whateverthefuckitwas has been foisted on the voters?

                      Increasing the odds of securing more seats.
                      NO! “More seats” means an overhang, and that only happens if the number of electorate seats a party gains exceeds the seats they would receive as a proportion of the party vote.

                      If the greens win an electorate seat, they will only have an electorate seat and 13 list seats, rather than 14 list seats.

                      You’re “question” about Auckland central in no way would change the composition of parliament on numbers of seats each party gets. There is no second bite at the apple. You might think that the Greens plummenting to sub-threshold levels is a threat that means Labour should foist a stupid, system-gaming decision on voters, but I’m not sure it keeps the Green caucus up at night.

                      Your question is a bullshit question about a stupid plan that quite frankly should be avoided if it’s needed because any party would deserve what it gets if it nosedives that badly. You need to have a caucus of incompetents, identity-fraudsters, and doddering bigots to fail that badly, if NZ parliamentary history is anything to go by.

    • james 9.3

      “Who will Labour stand? Should they stand-down to give the Greens a better chance?”

      They said the other day that they would not be making “deals” like this – So I guess they will be standing somebody.

      • bwaghorn 9.3.1

        I believe they said they would be making no deals , that’s different from deciding to not stand a candidate off there own bat.

    • Ad 9.4

      I suspect the Greens and Labour will come to an arrangement about Auckland Central. Jacinta got mighty close to unseating Nikki Kaye last time. The Green Party candidate was a waaaay further back.

      The massive question is who is Labour going to put up in Auckland Central.

      It is seriously not easy: this area has house prices in the multiple millions, except for apartments, and salaries that go along with it.

      With the City Rail Link and Sky City Convention Centre it also has billions of dollars of government funding pumping capital into it.

      Jacinta did serious hard work doorknocking the joint from Herne Bay all the way along.

      Will need a spectacular candidate, with capital, chutzpah and massive networks.

      • The Chairman 9.4.1

        Indeed, Jacinta did do some serious hard work door-knocking. Apparently, so did Nikki Kaye. Don’t know if she’ll be up to the challenge this year though.

        I also concur in regards to Labour requiring a spectacular candidate, with capital, chutzpah and massive networks.

        It will be interesting to see how it all unfolds.

  9. joe90 10

    Meet Kenneth Haapala, Trump’s new man at NOAA.

    https://www.desmogblog.com/ken-haapala

    President Donald Trump is taking aim at one of the federal government’s main agencies for climate change research – the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration – and NOAA employees are girding for drastic changes in how they conduct science and report it to the public.

    Trump has appointed a leading denier of climate change, Kenneth Haapala of the Heartland Institute, to serve on the administration team handling appointments for the U.S. Department of Commerce, the federal agency that oversees NOAA. Haapala will be in a position to help choose top administrators at NOAA, an agency that conducts atmospheric research and, among other duties, also oversees the National Weather Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service.

    http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/white-house/article129716229.html

  10. james 12

    http://trumpdonald.org/

    I thought some here would appreciate it. Childish silly humour that it is. Needs sound.

  11. joe90 13

    Buyer’s remorse…

    A Pennsylvania family fighting to have their relatives return to the United States after they were detained at Philadelphia International Airport and sent back overseas under the immigration order told “NBC Nightly News” that they voted for Donald Trump.

    “I understand he wants to make America safe,” Sarmad Assali said. “We’re all on with this. I definitely want to be in a safe place. But people need us and we need to be there for them.”

    http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/Assali-Family-Syria-Donald-Trump-Vote-Allentown-Immigration-Ban-Travel-Order-412238593.html

  12. Sabine 14

    cause only by bringing untold misery to legal migrants will the country be made great again. And of course if the country will do this to legal migrants what would they do to ‘illegal’ migrants.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-administration-circulates-more-draft-immigration-restrictions-focusing-on-protecting-us-jobs/2017/01/31/38529236-e741-11e6-80c2-30e57e57e05d_story.html?postshare=2611485889175975&tid=ss_tw&utm_term=.32e8d0598f4a

  13. joe90 15

    Oh dear, how sad, never mind.

    .

    Inside the Loews Hotel in downtown Philadelphia at various points Thursday were President Trump, Vice President Pence, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) and scores of other Republican members of Congress. Reporters were kept out, and only a few select staffers, family members and outsiders were allowed to participate in the private GOP policy retreat.

    But at least one unauthorized person made it inside, and while it is unclear to what degree the country’s top leaders were in physical danger, their circle of trust was undoubtedly breached.

    A person secretly recorded closed sessions on national security and health care that were attended by many dozens of GOP lawmakers. They had gathered for a private discussion of some of the thorniest legislative issues of the moment, as well as a question-and-answer session with Pence.

    The recordings were anonymously emailed that night to reporters for The Washington Post and other news outlets that published stories exposing qualms inside the GOP over the party’s plans to roll back the Democratic health-care overhaul and a looming debate between defense hawks and advocates of fiscal rectitude.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/lawmakers-want-answers-after-intruder-breaches-gops-inner-sanctum/2017/01/31/3a94331e-e729-11e6-b82f-687d6e6a3e7c_story.html?postshare=6471485895676006&tid=ss_tw&utm_term=.bd55dd1bd082

  14. adam 16

    This is a good policy from the greens I fully support.

    http://www.maoritelevision.com/news/education/every-child-should-learn-maori

    Where as, this is business as usual on nationals watch. What a sad government we have, one which costs, and costs and costs.

    http://www.maoritelevision.com/news/regional/specialist-clinics-assess-children-affected-faulty-dental-equipment

    • Draco T Bastard 16.1

      I agree that Māori should be compulsory in school. In fact, I think all of our official languages should be.

    • Cinny 16.2

      This parent agrees. The benefits for the kids to learn a second language consistently from a young age are enormous.

  15. Alan 17

    compulsory Maori years 1-10, another massive vote catcher for the Greens

  16. greywarshark 18

    Just to track off from Trump and the USA for a bit. TS wants to run a reading group and big political and policy discussion which happens after we have all read the same book. We have been talking about it on Open Mike 31 January. We thought we would start off with an oldie but goodie E F Schumacher’s Small is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered.

    Everyone who expressed interest yesterday and anyone today, who want to bring their minds and ideas to the reading and on-line discussion later, would you please give your pseudos as we want a committed core group to be the heart of the project. We can give advice on how to access the book, we just want you to be with us on the journey for the whole book if humanly possible. You matter, and as I said we want a core group and then others who get interested can join later on.

    It will be surfacing on the Sunday page which will be a place for spiky, bright iand practical ideas (Tip: Look down No.8 in 31/1 for tip on solar panels for mobiles),
    and thoughts and future-building talented commenters and story tellers.

    Cheers, fellow Standardistas! Waiting to hear<

    • weka 18.1

      Background here https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-31012017/#comment-1293808

      I’m looking forward to reading the book and the discussion!

      (a small but important correction, this isn’t an initiative from The Standard authors or Trust, it’s coming from the community with some back up from a couple of authors 🙂 )

    • Molly 18.2

      Would like to join in as well.

      • greywarshark 18.2.1

        Thanks Molly that’s great. I am trying to find more of our keen thinkers and so have what I think would be a good core of commenters to bounce ideas around on our finishing post! Hopefully it will be a grand national effort. It will be great I think only one or two more would be a good number.

    • Molly 18.3

      A good resource for second-hand books. Better World Books. Note: Prices are $USD but shipping is free, and the company is a B-Corp.

      • weka 18.3.1

        Thanks for that. We could draw up a list of options that get used in every post.

        • greywarshark 18.3.1.1

          weka and Molly
          Just to update you. There is a core of readers going to be in on the reading circle or whatever you call it – any ideas for a snappy understandable moniker? So I’m feeling happy. Got a few more feelers out but will stop shoulder tapping after this and get on with something else. By the way r0b has also offered to help but has over-riding concern at present.

          Will get onto jobs weka over weekend. Will you be around Sat Sun Mon or are you swanning off?

  17. joe90 19

    Celebrity SCOTUS Pick!

    White House is setting up Supreme Court announcement as a prime-time contest: @JusticeGorsuch and @JusticeHardiman identical Twitter pages.— Jeff Zeleny (@jeffzeleny) January 31, 2017

    https://twitter.com/jeffzeleny/status/826545822594633728

  18. james 20

    Election date announced – September 23rd.

  19. james 21

    “Government Confidence Rating has increased to 140pts (up 9pts) in January with 63% (up 4.5%) of NZ electors saying NZ is ‘heading in the right direction’ compared to 23% (down 4.5%) that say NZ is ‘heading in the wrong direction’.”

    Seems most people seem to think that the government is going OK..

    [lprent: If you are going to quote something as a fact, then link to it.

    For relevance look at this…
    http://www.roymorgan.com/morganpoll/new-zealand/nz-government-confidence

    Arbitrarily cheery picking a number that is traditionally high (ie Jan) is a bit dumb.. For instance look at the March/April numbers over the years as they bounce around.

    March 24 – April 6, 2008 47.5 37.5 110 15 100
    March 23 – April 5, 2009 65 22 143 13 100
    March 22 – April 4, 2010 57 31.5 125.5 11.5 100
    March 21 – April 3, 2011 54.5 29.5 125 16 100
    March 12 – April 1, 2012 53.5 29.5 124 17 100
    March 11-24, 2013 53.5 34 119.5 12.5 100
    March 31 – April 13, 2014 65 22 143 13 100
    March 2-15, 2015 64.5 24 140.5 11.5 100
    April 4-17, 2016 57.5 30.5 127 12 100

    Basically the GCR measures confidence in the government even more than it measures confidence in the political parties running the government.

    Banned for 4 weeks. But next time I see you start a unsubstantiated diversion causing a simple minded flame war because you didn’t link or even provide enough information to even identify the poll then it will be 4 months. ]

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • Leftie 21.1

      Depends on who they polled, doesn’t it?

    • Seems most people seem to think that the government is going OK.

      Which is weird. Either the majority think that skyrocketing house prices, a growing underclass and deteriorating water quality are “the right direction,” or they imagine these things are beyond the government’s capacity to influence. Which in turn means the majority of people are mistaken. I guess it’s a matter of “You can fool most of the people some of the time.”

    • esoteric pineapples 21.3

      Most polls show that right wing people prefer to read progressive sites because the level of debate is much higher than on right wing blogs. This is because the arguments put forward by the right wing are very weak due to the fact that their motivation is based purely on self-interest, hence truth is not required and is usually avoided.

  20. Fisiani 22

    When 63% of the population think that the country is going in the right direction what makes you think that in 234 days it will mean a change of government. I suspect that figure will keep growing and reflect a first ever majority MMP government.

    [lprent: If you want to quote a ‘fact’, then link to the source. I detest the flamewars that follow such diversionary trolling and I really dislike having to go and look it up to provide an explanation of what you are referring to. Banned 4 weeks ]

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • Leftie 22.1

      63% of the population? Depends on who the pollster polled, doesn’t it? National has been unable to achieve that in 3 general elections, remember, the majority didn’t vote for them. Now John key, the poster boy the party threw everything into, has run away.

    • adam 22.2

      Where are these magical figures coming from Fisiani? Lala land? OZ? do tell.

    • lprent 22.3

      FFS..

      From memory, when labour got removed last time the GCR was at similar levels before the election.

      It has very little to do with the political government of the day and more to do with the perception of how government process is going – regardless of what political parties are in power.

      It is somewhat pathetic watching these dimwitted people clinging to this measure.

      • james 22.3.1

        “From memory, when labour got removed last time the GCR was even higher.”

        Actually it wasnt.

        it was 123 then – its 140 points now.

        • lprent 22.3.1.1

          It was a minimal difference. But I had to look that up. However you have disrupted a whole thread with an unlinked and unsubstantiated ‘fact’.

          In case you haven’t got it – link facts or get me pissed off dealing with the stupid conversations that follow such stupid trolling.

    • Muttonbird 22.4

      Bye fisiani.

      Perhaps you could campaign for the National Party with a loud-hailer outside Queensgate instead.

  21. Morrissey 24

    Somebody hand me the hemlock—
    The Gruesome Twosome are back.

    The Panel, RNZ National, Wednesday 1 February 2017
    Jim Mora, Brian Edwards, Michelle Boag, Julie Moffett

    Jim Mora and his producers seem determined to insult his long-suffering listeners by lining up a steady diet of clickbait stories and pointless consumer surveys. Most of the poor saps who appear on this dismal chat show are so shallow and/or stupid that they don’t give a damn. Or, if they do care, they’re so desperate for work or so timid that they keep quiet. Occasionally, though, they show a sign of impatience. The most common way of doing this is to pass an exasperated remark, usually with a defusing giggle, on the inanity of the topics under discussion.

    Today, after Julie Moffett had finished talking about something completely inconsequential and ridiculous, Brian Edwards asked:

    “Have you got any items that aren’t completely preposterous?”

    This plaintive cry was greeted with awkward laughter, but the menu of trivia and inanity continued. Last item of the preshow was something about the retirement of Peter Capaldi from the role of Dr. Who.

    BRIAN EDWARDS: Capaldi’s BRILLIANT though, isn’t he!

    MICHELLE BOAG: Oh he is.

    JULIE MOFFETT: He IS.

    ad nauseam….

    • greywarshark 24.1

      Morrissey
      Did they ever discuss on Jim Mora the John Key low of talking about whether he wees in the shower? That would have been a shower. It would have been good dross to listen to and laugh and cry over.

      • Morrissey 24.1.1

        No, I missed it if they did. But I think Mora would not have allowed it to be discussed, as it’s rather unsavoury and he seems squeamish about such matters. He has no problem at all with his guests laughing at the suffering of dissidents, quoting hateful right wing ideologues like David Brooks, and even having one of them—Dr Michael Bassett—call Nicky Hager a Holocaust-denier, but a lowlife pissing in the shower is not acceptable discussion fodder.

  22. wellfedweta 25

    He’s got a point. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestinian_rocket_attacks_on_Israel

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • Muttonbird 25.1

      Stop the settlements and declare all existing ones illegal and the rocket attacks will be a thing of the past.

  23. wellfedweta 26

    You mean like when Israel withdrew from Gaza?

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    [lprent: FFS -banned for 16 weeks. I really don’t have time to deal with fuckwits with diverting repetition fetishes. ]

    • Muttonbird 26.1

      Interesting you want to split Palestine into Gaza and West Bank when it suits you then accuse Palestine of being split when suits you too.

    • greywarshark 26.2

      Note this new acronym TS. DRF (Diverting Repetition Fetishes) – in this year of Our Lord 2017 and the election year to see who our earthly lord will be, the fuckwits will try and overwhelm discourse, of course, so we might see a lot of DRF and that will be welcomed.

      • lprent 26.2.1

        The resulting debate is dead boring – especially for moderators.

        I tend to have an abrupt response when I see it happening. It is based around the idea that if I get rid of a fool(s) doing it, then I won’t have to read it.

        • greywarshark 26.2.1.1

          lprent
          Well I hope that won’t apply to me in the future – getting the DRF or other actions but they do smarten up all our acts which keeps the blog sharp.

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