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Open mike 01/04/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 1st, 2016 - 55 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmikeOpen mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

55 comments on “Open mike 01/04/2016”

  1. Jenny 1

    News that a global company set up by the oil companies to bribe politicians has been operating out of New Zealand through a shell company.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/78436709/new-zealand-shell-company-linked-to-unaoil-global-oil-industry-bribery-scandal

    We need a full investigation of how the oil companies got the rights to drill all over New Zealand’s coastal waters. With special concentration of the role of Unaoil.
    We need to uncover if Unaoil was one ot the lobbyists for these oil prospects.
    If our opposition MPs are on to it, this would be a good question for Question Time in Parliament.

    Followed by an OAI

    • Jenny 1.1

      Tumble weed blows through “The Standard”

      After posting this, I left the house for my usual three quarter of an hour commute across the congested and ever more tangled Auckland motorway system.

      The traffic came to a standstill somewhere between Tip Top Corner and the Penrose interchange, just as it does every morning.
      As I sat there in the fast lane staring glumly like some post Twentieth Century idiot, through the steering wheel of my stationary vehicle at the lines of motionless traffic going nowhere in both directions. As I patiently waited for the traffic to move again, I felt my cheeks turning red, as I slowly dawned to the significance of the date.

      A scandal of this global spanning magnitude and awfulness, could no way be real.

      I had been taken in by an April Fool’s joke.

      That the whole conspiracy centred on a New Zealand shell company further convinced me I had been had.

      All day at work I was rehearsing my mea culpas, “I had first seen this story break on the 31st of March”, “That the link was from a reputable establishment website, Stuff.co.nz”. I think you get the picture of my planned humiliating back down.

      I braced myself for the gale of howls, scorn and ridicule, and unmoderated abuse, (that even allows death threats,) and the bans, that usually greet my posts on this site, about climate change.

      My comments about deep sea oil, about Deniston, about coal exports, about bailing out fossil fuel companies “to save jobs”, that usually draw ad hominem abuse belittling and attacking me personally, for merely daring to suggest, that these practices need to come to a halt. And that the opposition Labour Party needs to be at the forefront of a united Left campaign to end these practices.

      What I didn’t expect was almost total silence.

  2. Jenny 2

    Have any New Zealand politicians been bribed by Unaoil?

    Without naming any, I can think of a few that behave as if they have.

    We need to get to the bottom of this scandal.

    Will questions be raised in parliament to uncover the activities of Unaoil in this country?

    • maui 2.1

      We also need a full investigation on how Leighton Holdings was awarded the Transmission Gully roading project, as they have been implicated in the Unaoil corruption scandal.

      • TC 2.1.1

        Probably because fulton and fletchers decided neither wanted it or the potential aggravation when a regime change digs into wtf it ever went ahead in the first place.

  3. Jenny 3

    “The Company that Bribed the World”

    The leaked files reveal that some people in these firms believed they were hiring a genuine lobbyist, and others who knew or suspected they were funding bribery simply turned a blind eye.

    http://www.theage.com.au/interactive/2016/the-bribe-factory/day-1/the-company-that-bribed-the-world.html

  4. Draco T Bastard 4

    Climate Model Predicts West Antarctic Ice Sheet Could Melt Rapidly

    For half a century, climate scientists have seen the West Antarctic ice sheet, a remnant of the last ice age, as a sword of Damocles hanging over human civilization.

    The great ice sheet, larger than Mexico, is thought to be potentially vulnerable to disintegration from a relatively small amount of global warming, and capable of raising the sea level by 12 feet or more should it break up. But researchers long assumed the worst effects would take hundreds — if not thousands — of years to occur.

    Now, new research suggests the disaster scenario could play out much sooner.

    That would be half of Auckland under water.

  5. Tinfoilhat 5

    Rip Ronnie Corbett – lovely funny man.

  6. Sacha 6

    Barry Soper (!) finds Steven Joyce’s claims over mass payroll problems wanting: http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/opinion/the-soap-box-joyce-taking-us-for-fools/

    • John Shears 6.1

      Joyce is not a joke he is a disaster.

      Solution to the problem is to make the appointed experts that arrange for the MP’s salary rises each year to apply their expertise
      to this problem, and I am not joking.

  7. adam 7

    Tax explained. God bless them.

  8. Sacha 8

    Figures show how weak NZ’s economy actually is, despite govt spin – Brian Fallow: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11614724

  9. Tautoko Mangō Mata 9

    Dirty politics
    Hacker claims he helped Enrique Peña Nieto win Mexican presidential election

    Andrés Sepúlveda said he and other hackers installed malware to monitor opponents during 2012 campaign as part of ‘black propaganda’ operation”
    His team are said to have installed malware at the headquarters of the two candidates, which let them monitor phones and computers.

    According to the report, Sepúlveda saw speech drafts, meetings plans and campaign schedules as they were typed into the keyboard.

    Using this information, he used a “virtual army” of fake Twitter accounts to direct public debate towards subjects that would strengthen Peña Nieto – for example by acclaiming his plan to crack down on drug violence – or embarrass rivals.
    Sepúlveda said he brought high-quality fake accounts that had been maintained for more than a year to make them look genuine, as well as generating 30,000 low-end Twitter bots that bumped up numbers of “likes” and “follows”, thereby creating memes and shaping discussion.

    “When I realized that people believe what the internet says more than reality, I discovered that I had the power to make people believe almost anything,” he told Bloomberg.

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/31/mexico-presidential-election-enrique-pena-nieto-hacking

  10. Ad 10

    Awesome Otago Daily Times April Fools story today: a $1 billion 5 star hotel + hospital.

    Great editorial work team.

    • Pasupial 10.1

      I particularly liked the name of the Swiss consultant; “Dr Flien-Flyoute”. If only the piece as a whole wasn’t quite so plausible.

  11. greywarshark 11

    Stuff on new legislation coming in today 1 April.
    I thought that the youthful lightheartedness about the topic of workplace safety from jonolist Jo Moir was cute?
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/78371585/How-will-law-changes-kicking-in-on-April-1-affect-you

    Great! More money!
    Not so fast.
    Beneficiaries will be expected to work 20 hours part-time instead of 15 in order to keep the same allowances. Sole parents will have to get back into part-time when their child turns 3 instead of the current 5 years old.

    And the law changes?
    Zero hour contracts, which meant no guaranteed hours for some workers, will become illegal.

    The biggie is the Health and Safety at Work Act, which takes effect on Monday.
    Health and safety you say? That’s my favourite subject!
    Really? Wow. In that case, you will be interested to know Worksafe is more likely to prosecute employers as a result of the law. Workers will also have obligations though so everyone will need to be on top of what’s expected.

    • weka 11.1

      It’s hard to tell what you are saying and what is from the article.

    • Puckish Rogue 11.2

      http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2016/04/1st_core_benefit_increase_in_44_years_today.html
      The same uncaring poor oppressing neoliberal National Government has also today (on top of $25 a week extra for benefits):
      » Increased the childcare assistance rate from $4 to $5 an hour

      » Increased in-work tax credits for low income families

      » Increased paid parental leave to 18 weeks

      » Increased the minimum wage to $15.25 an hour – the highest in the world relative to the median wage

      » Increased superannuation payments by 2.7%

      » Abolished zero hour contracts

      This hateful neoliberal Government must be destroyed comrades

      • b waghorn 11.2.1

        The zero hours and paid parental leave was due to labour applying pressure I believe.

      • maui 11.2.2

        You’ll be willing to drive through Mangere with a megaphone extolling these benefits then?

  12. Draco T Bastard 12

    John Key Reveals Real TPPA Agenda In Under 20 seconds.

    With regard to the TPPA he says :

    “You know, if the United States abdicates it’s place in a Asia, that will ultimately get filled by somebody else”

    His comment mirrors Obama’s one-liner in his State of the Nation address when he urged Congress to ratify the TPP in order to make sure that “China does not set the rules in that region; we do.”

    How does that square with former Trade Minister Tim Groser’s comment of last October of 2015 that China “could join if they wished”

    It doesn’t.

    When people ask me “Why would Key sign a trade deal that’s no good for us?” I point to Obama’s revelation that he sees the TPPA as part of America’s economic power play with China.

    It’s all about economic hegemony and control of the world by the US. Also called empire.

    • Puckish Rogue 12.1

      Good, the worlds a better place with the USA in charge. Second place for me would be China after that it doesn’t bear thinking about…Russia, ISIS?!?!?

      • Colonial Viper 12.1.1

        Good, the worlds a better place with the USA in charge.

        Sort of. Your comment is true if you have the privilege of living in a core territory or core protectorate of the anglo empire.

        Like one of the FVEY nations for instance.

        If you don’t, then it’s usually much more shite.

        • Puckish Rogue 12.1.1.1

          Ok then name a country or state (with a reasonable chance of actually being in charge) you’d rather see in place of the USA

          • Colonial Viper 12.1.1.1.1

            Ok then name a country or state (with a reasonable chance of actually being in charge) you’d rather see in place of the USA

            I think your question is quite reasonable but it does come from the “unipolar world” perspective of the USA.

            I think the remainder of the 2010s and 2020s will see us complete the distinct shift to what the Russians and Chinese describe as a “multipolar world” of geopolitics. (A shift which the status quo power the USA is naturally resisting with all its might).

            Don’t get me wrong, IMO the United States will remain the single most powerful nation in the world for another 20, maybe more, years.

            However, it will not have the overwhelming strategic positioning that it has enjoyed for the last couple of decades.

            • Draco T Bastard 12.1.1.1.1.1

              Don’t get me wrong, IMO the United States will remain the single most powerful nation in the world for another 20, maybe more, years.

              Personally, I’d be amazed if they made 20 years. I may even be surprised if they made 10.

              • Colonial Viper

                IMO the US still has two massive strategic advantages.

                1) A massive blue water navy, and the only one with global reach.

                2) Control of the world’s reserve currency, it’s issuance, and the global financial system based on that reserve currency.

                Those are the two big things to keep track off.

                One big strike against the USA however and its nothing to do with Russia or China – its own mega-corps and uber-elite have no loyalty towards the nation state of the USA and are cannabalising the country as we speak.

                That is the factor more than anything any external power can do, which is going to end the USA as the world’s pre-eminent power.

      • Draco T Bastard 12.1.2

        Good, the worlds a better place with the USA in charge.

        So, you’re fine with all the wars that they start?
        All the poverty that they create?
        All the misery?
        All the strife?

        And all that just so that they can pretend to be rich.

        Yeah, I can do without propping a failed, immoral state such as the US.

        • Puckish Rogue 12.1.2.1

          Ok then name a country or state (with a reasonable chance of actually being in charge) you’d rather see in place of the USA

          • Draco T Bastard 12.1.2.1.1

            None. I think we can do quite well as sovereign independent nations that work together.

            But your question does highlight your subservience to authority. I’m sure that National are proud of you.

            • Puckish Rogue 12.1.2.1.1.1

              The USA is the best of a bad situation, any other alternative would be a backwards steps for most and you know I’m right

              • Stuart Munro

                It’s toadies like you that ruined the neutral states movement.

              • Colonial Viper

                The USA is the best of a bad situation, any other alternative would be a backwards steps for most and you know I’m right

                “backward step for most”

                It could certainly be a backward step for the core Anglo empire territories and protectorates.

                But that’s what, 1B people out of a 7B world?

                That’s not “most”.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  +1

                  Getting rid of the US Empire would be best for most. And that would include NZ as all the US Empire does is shaft us for their corporations benefit.

  13. Rosie 13

    A UBI question. Apologies if this has already been covered in discussion – I am waiting for discussion time to be over and policy to be implemented upon a Labour coalition government being elected in 2017, so have read little on the topic. (Of course, I would welcome a UBI with open arms – only those with wads of money and no understanding of how ordinary people suffer wouldn’t).

    I’m interested in learning about the history of the UBI in the NZ context. My google efforts have not shown anything, possibly due to poor wording in the search. Can anyone point me in the right direction to learn of it’s history?

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      the development of a universal NZ Super was a big step which embodied much of the rationale and thinking of a UBI.

      Perce Harpham has also promoted and developed the idea of a UBI in NZ for many many years.

      http://perce.harpham.co.nz/

  14. Draco T Bastard 14

    A Hard Working Conservative™

    A leading voice of the new “alt-right,” Breitbart.com tech editor Milo Yiannopoulos, does not write many of the articles that appear under his byline on the conservative news site, two sources who have worked directly with him told BuzzFeed News.
    These sources — a former intern and someone who has worked with Yiannopoulos for years both in and outside of the Breitbart News Network — as well as a video taken from a private chat offer a glimpse behind the curtain of one of a new movement’s leading provocateurs. The sources also suggest that much of the commentator’s work is written by a bevy of mostly unpaid personal interns.

    Betcha we know who does get the pay though.

  15. ianmac 15

    Update on guess who:
    A prominent New Zealander facing indecent assault charges will keep the name suppression protecting his identity until the end of his trial.

    The trial is due to begin on Monday. The man has denied the charges against him.

    There are heavy suppression orders over the case, meaning the man cannot be identified, nor can his alleged victims or their ages.

    The man is facing 12 charges of indecent assault against two people including two representative charges.

    The charges, which include allegations of touching the complainants on the breast, buttocks, groin and thigh, are punishable by up to 10 years’ imprisonment.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11615353

    • b waghorn 15.1

      National will be working very hard to see that the prominent nz er gets permanent name suppression Evan if found guilty.

  16. Hami Shearlie 16

    David Cunliffe was a very good guest on Bomber’s panel tonight on the Daily Blog website. My respect for his intellect and insight has not been diminished in the slightest since he left the leadership of the Labour Party. If the caucus and Little were wise they would be harnessing his talents on the front bench.

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