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Open mike 01/03/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 1st, 2011 - 52 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

It’s open for discussing topics of interest, making announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

Comment on whatever takes your fancy.

The usual good behaviour rules apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

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52 comments on “Open mike 01/03/2011 ”

  1. prism 1

    Shonkey was quoted on the radio as addressing Christchurch people saying that the best thing for them would be to get back to work. I don’t know in what context this was said but it sounds patronising as if they want to sit around and live in misery on benefits – not. It would be good if he could do some real work apart from pontificating, sympathetic speeches.

    One necessary thing would be to expand other universities enrolment capacity by lifting the cap imposed before this disaster. Another would be to have numbers of mediators freely available to people who feel they cannot stay in Christchurch yet are tied by tenancy contracts entered into in good faith that there was a livable house, city and occupation for them. I was astonished at the crassness of the firm managing tenancies that he didn’t understand that. He just saw the matter as people wanting to duck out of their obligations. The human needs as well as the financial plight of landlords that arises from broken tenancies must both be considered.

    Nigel Lundy said some tenants were using the earthquake as an excuse to avoid their responsibilities.
    Mr Lundy, manages 160 tenancies through his firm Metro Advances and said he would not allow any renters to break their contracts if their homes were still habitable. His company was charging six weeks rent as a break fee for those wanting out.

    rental manager

    • Vicky32 1.1

      As the Am,ericans would say “what a prince!”

      • prism 1.1.1

        Yes, and I notice a surname with unpleasant connotations that matches his lack of princely noblesse oblige (the supposed obligation of nobility to be honourable and generous).

  2. prism 2

    One more sad story to think of today at 10 to 1. Owen Wright who was on his way home to his family in Lyttelton in his vehicle and delayed ending up being caught in a rockfall from an aftershock.

    So as he passed tired, scared people trekking on foot up the Bridle Path, he stopped time and time again to pick them up. He would drop some off at the top – then go back for more.


  3. For those interested in the struggles of various peoples around the world, I offer this


    We are all connected and community is the answer to most of our issues.

  4. Lanthanide 4

    Someone in CHCH, probably the mayor, needs to step in and announce when businesses are going to have limited access to the CBD. There were stories on Closeup last night of businesses trying to get back in and first being allowed in, and then later having that rescinded (Mace engineering, whom my boyfriend (who has had dealings with them) has a very low view of). Meanwhile an architects firm was able to get in and get their computer equipment.

    They need to come out and say that there will be an organised and orderly system set up, ASAP (next week would be best) where companies can register there interest of returning to the city, a brief list of what they want and their address. Then official escorts can be organised and businesses can get access to their buildings for 30 minutes where safe to do so, to remove critical systems and paperwork.

    Otherwise we’re going to continue to see frustration and anger, more economic stress than really necessary, and people getting into a whole “well how come that company was given special permission – we should be able to get in too!” shouting match.

    • weka 4.1

      Won’t it depend on which street and which building? There will be places that are safer than others. Some people with homes within the cordon have been refused entry, others are living there. I’ve not seen a clear delineation of that either.

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.1

        I think Lanth is saying that the authorities need to set up a framework and process for businesses to access their offices, and yes for determining what access can be allowed and is safe.

        Currently it seems there is no framework and its all very ad hoc.

        This is the kind of measure which could make the long term survival of the CBD feasible.

        • Lanthanide

          Frankly the guy who has been showing up around the place as the CBD business guy should stop bleating about how bad everything is and set up this registry himself.

          If he comes to the mayor with a list of businesses, their addresses and what they want to get out, it’ll make it a lot more likely that this will actually happen sooner rather than later.

    • prism 4.2

      Yes, it is not sufficient to leave the management of the sites to contracted firms who have to focus on their tasks but have no responsibility beyond the doing and ensuring safety for the community. It is not the task of the contractors to be making rules and setting up systems but the authorities should be seeing to this and assisting people and business not so much talkfest and photo opportunity waffling on about the spirit of Christchurch etc etc.

      It is a bit sick-making to wonder if John Key will get re elected because he was so visible at and about the earthquake, a Bob Parker situation again.

    • Janice 4.3

      I am amazed that these businesses don’t have a daily off site back up for their computers and claim that they have to get back to their offices to get their business data. It is hard to believe that a large company doesn’t do this as part of their daily routine before leaving the office. It’s not rocket science.

      • lprent 4.3.1

        I do it for this site. There is a hot backup site that keeps updating continuously. Then there are the cold backups.

        Every night the entire database compresses itself into local backup (about 120MB compressed – text is tight). The site files do a delta of changes (the total number of images and videos are so big that I find it impossible to do a full backup each day). The whole lot ships itself to the backup systems across the net and reconstitutes itself into a tip version. The old tip versions compress themselves. Older versions selectively zap themselves.

        I learnt my lesson after losing some images early last year, and I actually run the cold backup site at least once every couple of weeks to make sure I have a complete working backup.

        I do about 450MB per night to keep our words of wisdom safe in multiple locations… 😈 The net is a wonderful backup instrument. But I’d have to say that its limiting factor is images and video. The bulk of our sites volume is the immense number of images that we use. Whenever I have to work on Lyn’s systems it crawls because it has terabytes of video.

      • Lanthanide 4.3.2


        The chamber of commerce, after the 4th of September quake, should’ve got involved with several IT backup companies in CHCH and put together a plan where all members could access discounted backup consulting and services etc. Set up presentations by the companies to the businesses to get them to understand what it was all about and how cost effective it was in the long term.

        No vision.

        • McFlock

          Not just IT – my workplace is re-examining our safety practises and who knows what to do. It’s one think to have all the forms and signs, but not many people know things like who the floor warden is – and if we have one (the worst one like that was back when I was working security – an audit found some of the emergency a/h contacts were in different roles, retired, or in at least 2 cases long deceased). Shit slipped, and we’ve woken up to it.

          IT-wise, we already have offsite data backup, but I think it might only be 3 buildings away. That’s next on the tick-sheet, given that we’re entirely IT based.

    • The Voice of Reason 4.4

      My work’s Chch office is in the CBD exclusion zone. A couple of my colleagues were allowed in this morning to retrieve lappies, data cards and phones that were abandoned last Tuesday. However, it’s a newish building and was green stickered. My recollection of Mace Eng is that it’s housed in a couple of older buildings a block or two away from the brewery. It may be that all or part is not regarded as safe to enter yet?

  5. Bunji 5

    Danyl has covered this story at Dimpost.

    Judith Collins appears to be dog-whistling prison-rape for looters. From our Corrections Minister. Anyone else see something wrong with that? Can some journo please take her to task?

    • weka 5.1

      There was some discussion in a previous open mike. Someone could phone the journos on the Herald that wrote the original piece.

    • Lanthanide 5.2

      She’ll weasel out of it. But it’s not a good look.

      • felix 5.2.1

        Yeah that’s the idea – to make her weasel out of it in public.

        It won’t make her revise her horrible views but it lets people see her for the weasel she is.

      • People across at Kiwiblog (and some of the usually rational people, at that) were claiming it was a reference to double bunking. Christonapogostick.

        • logie97

          Understand Collins has suggested some instant shelter solutions. Converted shipping containers. Easily portable, convertible and apparently very comfortable…

  6. joe90 6

    What we have and haven’t learned from ‘Climategate’.

    It’s a numbingly familiar pattern in media coverage. The conservative movement that’s been attacking climate science for 20 years has a storied history of demonstrable fabrications, distortions, personal attacks, and nothingburger faux-scandals — not only on climate science, but going back to asbestos, ozone, leaded gasoline, tobacco, you name it. They don’t follow the rigorous standards of professional science; they follow no intellectual or ethical standards whatsoever. Yet no matter how long their record of viciousness and farce, every time the skeptic blogosphere coughs up a new “ZOMG!” it’s as though we start from zero again, like no one has a memory longer than five minutes.

  7. joe90 7

    Aljazeera: A revolution against neoliberalism?

    The political economy of the Mubarak regime was shaped by many currents in Egypt’s own history, but its broad outlines were by no means unique. Similar stories can be told throughout the rest of the Middle East, Latin America, Asia, Europe and Africa. Everywhere neoliberalism has been tried, the results are similar: living up to the utopian ideal is impossible; formal measures of economic activity mask huge disparities in the fortunes of the rich and poor; elites become “masters of the universe,” using force to defend their prerogatives, and manipulating the economy to their advantage, but never living in anything resembling the heavily marketised worlds that are imposed on the poor.

    Unemployment was a major grievance for millions of Egyptian protesters [EPA]
    The story should sound familiar to Americans as well. For example, the vast fortunes of Bush era cabinet members Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney, through their involvement with companies like Halliburton and Gilead Sciences, are the product of a political system that allows them — more or less legally — to have one foot planted in “business” and another in “government” to the point that the distinction between them becomes blurred. Politicians move from the office to the boardroom to the lobbying organization and back again.

  8. Deadly_NZ 8

    Did anyone see the pic on the from page of Stuff yesterday ? The one taken in CHCH of wrecked buildings with 2 CR plated Beemers driving thru?? It was not there for long, I grabbed a copy of the pic but not the link..

    Oh and speaking of scary pics this in stuff today.

    can they double the fines???


    Pretty Please
    With sugar on top

  9. higherstandard 9

    Good on ya wiz ! …… we need more people like you in the world.


  10. Since it’s all so damned depressing of late, this might cheer up some of yous 🙂

    Very clever take on a brilliant movie. I wonder if “The Kings Speech” will become the new “Downfall”, parody-wise?

  11. Carol 11

    Just caught bits of the Beatson interview on Stratos (yay! It’s on Freeview from today). The interview tonight was with the National & Labour candidates for the Botany by-election. Apart from the differences between Labour and Nat policies, it was clear that Woods (LAB) had been out and about talking to people in Botany and knew what issues were important for them (eg fluctuations and uncertainty in immigration policies & cuts to local early childhood centres) – Ross (NAT) claimed that National had put loads more money int ECE than Labour had. He hadn’t heard of any issues with immigration, in spite of the fact that Beatson began the question saying he had heard that, for the Asian community, immigration policy is an important issue.

    In contrast to Woods grasp of local issues, Ross tried to shamelessly play on Key’s popularity and on sentiments about the Christchurch earthquake. At one point in the qu & a’s, Ross said that Key had been planning to be on the ground campaigning in Botany with him, but had to deal with important Christchurch issues. However, Ross assured Botany voters that Key cares about them.

    Woods was asked first for a final word. He said that National, throughout the country and in Botany, had been taking voters for granted. Whereas he (Woods) said he wouldn’t be taking anyone for granted and, if elected, he would be out their talking with & listening to the people of Botany and working for them. He also said stated he would be following the Labour policy in supporting the low and middle income people who were suffering right now … and some other stuff.

    Ross said his final word wasn’t going to be about Botany (of course, he already showed he was out of touch with opinions on the ground in the electorate). Ross said the important issue right now was Christchurch and urged everyone to put their hands in their pockets to donate. He said Botany really wasn’t that important at the moment while everyone is focused in christchurch.

    • toad 11.1

      Jami-Lee Ross reminds me of Michael Lhaws.

      Into politics at a young age, no experience of real life, and perpetrating all the prejudices that appeal to this country’s bigots (apart from those about Asians, which Ross obviously can’t afford to voice, given the demographic of the electorate he is standing in).

      A total scumbag imo. But a certainty to be elected, unfortunately. Let’s hope his ego gets the better of him and he succumbs to an “Antoinette Beck” moment and like Lhaws is banished to a lifetime on talkback radio.

  12. lprent 12

    There has been an interesting (ie disheartening) problem with Brian Edwards site today. It has been running as slow as a wet week on exactly the same day that there was a (ummm) difference between Brian Edwards and John Campbell.

    John Campbell, tonight you were a disgrace to the interviewer’s trade.
    and now
    A Gracious Apology from John Campbell

    It is all rather amusing. But I was more interested in the problem of running a website when the bloody database access is somewhat unreliable under fairly heavy loadings. Because Brian asked me to have a look at it. I’ve added (very slowly) a full blown caching system that should make the web pages fast and minimize the delays for comments despite the database. I have also added some tracking in case it is the bots causing issues. But it really just looks like the database at the hosting company (and they are trying to fix that).

    As part of that – please go and hit the links. I’ll be monitoring traffic to see if the site has been fixed or the tweaks alleviate the problem.

    Let me know of any obvious errors please…


    • Pascal's bookie 12.1

      Loaded real fast for me

      • lprent 12.1.1

        That was what I was seeing as well (flicking it on and off). Really really fast when giving a cached version.

    • Rosy 12.2

      No problems for me either. This little exercise led me to look at a few links about that interview and to an excellent debunk of Ring’s (and other psuedo-science) ‘predictions’ (being on the otherside of the world means it’s taken a little bit of time to catch up on this controversy).

      • lprent 12.2.1

        Thats Ok, I am the same. I completely ignored Ring a while back after I detected a couple of his points that seemed to require some interesting (and impossible) timescales for the energy requirements. Can’t even remember what they were now. Just remember that they’d have required that much of Canterbury didn’t exist any more if they’d happened.

        BE wasn’t really looking at the theories. He was just looking at the interviewing as far as I can see.

    • lprent 12.3

      It is a trivial annoying to test, but does appear that I have the caching on. But there isn’t enough load on the SQL server at present to cause issues.

      If they have failed to fix it tonight I will be able to see tomorrow.

  13. kriswgtn 13

    I am in Paraparaumu and we just had a earthquake 3 mins ago
    me and my flatmates felt it befor arrived was like a nudge then a little kick

    quite nerving

    • They say they don’t predict anything of greater magnitude following… here’s hoping “they” are right. Good luck mate.

    • Pascal's bookie 13.2

      Felt it here (Wellington) too. The Geonet sites are reading it a 5 on the Mercalli scale. I’m hoping it wasn’t chch again, but the radio isn’t telling me anything.

      • Rosy 13.2.1

        ‎4.5M 20kms NW Wellington 40km depth, at a guess just a common garden Wellington quake – hope so anyway – It certainly woke up my family who are living there. The youngest used to love it when the house ‘jumped’. Since Christchuch not so much. Is now in bed with his dad 😉

      • Lanthanide 13.2.2

        Was saying to my bf that it must be quite unnerving. That’d equate to something like an 8+ in CHCH wouldn’t it?

    • Vicky32 13.3

      My niece just mentioned it on Facebook, she’s in Khandallah… My son in Newtown didn’t feel anything, and I’ve just sent a message to my sister in Johnsonville.
      We left Welly in 1990, because the earthquakes got on my last nerve. I wish the rest of the family had too, but they were cool about it. And then my son had to go and move back there! 🙁

      • Vicky32 13.3.1

        Update – my sister in Johnsonville and her son and daughter felt it as well… My niece in Khandallah is so laid-back about it it’s ridiculous. She says there’ve been 5 since Christmas and she’s not bothered. (She was sodding well in Blenheim til a week ago!)

  14. kriswgtn 14

    20 KMs? north west of wgtn is Tawa?

  15. swordfish 15

    Yep, definitely felt a sharp jolt here in the Capital. Brief look of dismay from one or two people in the Internet Cafe – was this Wellington’s turn ?

    On an entirely different note, I just want to briefly pay tribute here to Tom Gregory who has just died in the last few days. Tom – father of my old mate Jane Gregory from Mana College – was a loyal unionist and Labour supporter. Remained staunch throughout the 51 lockout. A very progressive man who – like my own parents – opposed the Vietnam War, Nuclear Warship Visits and Springbok Tours. Tom was 87.

    Like my parents, I see Tom as yet more evidence that highly progressive, humanitarian ideas did actually exist before the heavily self-promotional first-wave Boomer (Hippy) Generation claimed to have invented them.

  16. Drakula 16

    My chief concern is how the mainstream media is handling the Christchurch earthquake and as Rex has pointed out it really is so damned depressing.

    Just after the earthquake Radio NZ and some of the TV media were running hot the Christchurch earthquake issue constantly for twenty four a day, and a lot of it was sensationalised and repetitive.

    Could they not have put some soothing music on instead of the repitition? It would have even benefited the staff to take stock, calm themselves and broardcaste the news as it comes.

    Even over the week-end the only other news that I got from that particular station was the terrors of Libya’s Gaddafi!!!!

    So what kind of psychological effect must that have on the victims of the quake? So why do they do this?

    My next door neighbour lived in Belfast during the troubles and he said that in the 60’s you got some bloody good music between the terrorist shootings.

    Should there not be some civilised rules of engagement here? Is blanket coverage necessary?

    • Vicky32 16.1

      I listened to the BBC world service (I always do) during the day, and got some relief from the blanket coverage. It’s just so repetitive, and scary….

  17. Draco T Bastard 17


    Naomi Oreskes on RNZ about her new book Merchants of Doubt. A look at how people and PR firms are hired to cast doubt upon scientific consensus.

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