Open mike 01/05/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 1st, 2013 - 150 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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

Step right up to the mike…

150 comments on “Open mike 01/05/2013”

  1. Paul 1

    Remember to tell PaknSave and New World that you won’t shop there if the y adopt Youth rates.
    Use their suggestion boxes and email them.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      Yip, much better to support Countdown, who locked out the bread delivery workers all those years ago.

      • Paul 1.1.1

        I know. I’m not a fan of Countdown either, especially as the profits go overseas.
        What is your solution?

        • starboard 1.1.1.1

          Buy from neither….but I see a little problem there..

        • Lanthanide 1.1.1.2

          No solution, just pointing out that in general these boycotts don’t really achieve anything – Countdown is still in business and making record profits.

          • Te Reo Putake 1.1.1.2.1

            Not so, Lanth. Market share is all important to the two main chains and any knock in public confidence, or the hint of a boycott, is a serious matter to them:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2006_Progressive_Enterprises_dispute

            • Lanthanide 1.1.1.2.1.1

              I don’t see anything on that page that indicates Progressive Enterprises have suffered badly from the public reaction to what they did, the worst are these parts:

              “On 24 October The Press reported that the dispute “took a toll on Australian parent company Woolworths, which reported flat sales in New Zealand for the first quarter””

              “On 12 October The Press reported that Marty Hamnett who had been CEO of Progressive Enterprises during the dispute, was leaving his position to “return to work in Australia for family reasons”

              • Te Reo Putake

                Perhaps you missed the paragraph about the call for a public boycott from the Greens?

                Ultimately, it was the loss of sales, and a ceding of market share to their rivals, that caused Progressive to sue for peace. The unions involved did not call for a boycott, but it was obvious that there was a reaction from the community, even at stores where no picket line was maintained.

                The acknowledgment from the company that sales were “flat”, and the sacking of Marty Hamnett itself, kinda confirm the point.

                • Lanthanide

                  “Perhaps you missed the paragraph about the call for a public boycott from the Greens?”

                  I did miss that. But it doesn’t change my response: there was nothing on that page that indicates Progressive Enterprises suffered badly from the public reaction to what they did.

                  I’m not saying that they didn’t suffer badly, just that the page you linked to doesn’t indicate that.

                  • Te Reo Putake

                    Well, I think you’re being a tad pedantic, Lanth. The info is all there on that page. The combination of closed distribution centres, picket lines at major stores and broad public support is what won the dispute for the union members.

                    • Lanthanide

                      You said:

                      “Not so, Lanth. Market share is all important to the two main chains and any knock in public confidence, or the hint of a boycott, is a serious matter to them:”

                      And then had the link to the wiki page, as if it somehow backs up your statement.

                      I could just easily say something like this:
                      Without gravity, it would be very difficult for me to go about my day to day life:
                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravity

                      In otherwords you’ve stated something that on the face of it is true and acceptable, and then linked to a page that discussed the topic in general, but doesn’t really address the points you made.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      I think I already mentioned you are being pedantic, didn’t I? And you have acknowleged you didn’t read it thoroughly, missing the very paragraph that referred to a consumer boycott.

                      The facts are straightforward. There was an unofficial consumer boycott against PEL. It hurt them. So did the organised industrial action. They folded. End of. I’m not saying that the boycott was the single reason for the defeat of PEL, but it was a significant factor.

                      Remember, your original comment was that you didn’t think that boycotts really acheive anything. You now know, from a practical example, that that is not always the case.

                    • Lanthanide

                      I’m saying they don’t achieve anything in the sense of achieving anything long term. Bunch of people boycott Countdown, they have a quarter where sales are flat, and then it’s back to business as usual.

            • Brett Dale 1.1.1.2.1.2

              Pac and save had 11 people turn up to a protest, I dont think pac and save is worried.

              As long as the prices are cheap, people will shop there.

              • McFlock

                May be.
                But I don’t.

                Maybe I’m alone in that, maybe not. That’s something they should factor in when they are deciding whether to screw workers over. A boycott might have an effect, it might not (Cadbury’s and palm oil springs to mind in the former).

                The very fact that a fiscally prudent manager would look at the public response is an improvement on a situation where the only factor to consider in the treatment of workers is the effect on the bottom line.

                • No one is going to boycott pac and save, because they pay crap wages, just like no one would boycott speights in this country if they paid low places, or noone will stop going to rugby union games until the nzrfu deals with the violent problem.

                  People will not boycott something they want.

                  You think all those letters to fire Paul henry were from people that would actually watch Paul Henry?

                  Please, its not going to happen.

                  • McFlock

                    I do.
                    I am a person.
                    Therefore you are wrong.

                    Because you are so demonstrably wrong in your categorical statement about what “people” do, you might want to check out any qualifications along the lines of “nobody but you” against, oh, any actual research into the matter. Just so we know you’re not talking out of your – um – mouth 😉

                    Oh, by the way – is Paul Henry still with TVNZ?

                    • Foreign Waka

                      There are now two paradigm in play, crap wages vs profits going overseas. Confuses people and therefore – nothing changes. Very good tactic. Besides, all these companies who said that they wont use youth rates – how will we know? Who can really say?

                    • Research McFlock?

                      Just go outside any pac and sav tomorrow and see all the people buying the cheap potatoes chips.

                      You may not shop there, but there wont be enough people who shop their regularly that wont go because of youth wages, to make a difference.

                    • McFlock

                      And how do we see the folk who aren’t shopping at paknslave?

                      Evidence, not anecdata, fool

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Yeah I’m ditching Pak N Slave. I might only spend $100 a month there (it’s not my local and I only shop there if I happen to be passing by), but fuck them.

                    • felix

                      “And how do we see the folk who aren’t shopping at paknslave?”

                      Well duh McF, if you can’t see them it’s because there aren’t any.

                  • Paul

                    I do too.
                    I am Spartacus.

            • Populuxe1 1.1.1.2.1.3

              Problem is while people might be prepared to boycott one or t’other, they are definitely not going to boycott both because there are basic limits to how much inconvenience people will endure for a principle in a reasonably affluent society like ours.

              • aerobubble

                The market is pretty rigged, by the time you get to a supermarket, out of your car, across the car park, queuing etc, your not going to shop around for better bargains.
                And really both pac-sav and countdown know that, that’s why they don’t compete with each other, pac-sav packs them high and sells them cheap, and countdown is dearer.
                How can pac-a-sav do that, well I believe it buys stock that has been on the shelves elsewhere that needs to be move fast, whereas countdown does for slightly high quality, consistency at a price. Basically the program of roading sprawl has given local venders a monopoly.

                Then there’s the habit of only one shop selling a item cheap, while all the others have different items slightly cheap, so none actually competes with the others and they effective set the price.

                Then theres is the constant sales, where products are sold at the same price a few month, couple this with astonishing jumps in price…

                I think its pretty much understood that consumers have no real power in NZ (well unless they are very wealthy).

  2. Ruobeil 2

    Post should be headed: Why Labour and the Greens want Kiwis to pay too much for milk, fruit and veges, water , rates, fuel etc, etc.

    I recall the taxpayer funded Axe the Tax bus and Labour telling us we’re paying too much for fruit and veges.

    Am i to assume that is no longer the case?

    [lprent: off topic diversion. Moved to OpenMike. ]

    • Paul 2.1

      Diversion.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 2.2

      Labour and Greens support the removal of GST on fruit and veges : ) Sorry, probably lost the original intent of your post.

  3. rosy 3

    The flags are out for Mayday on my side of the world. I’ll be off to watch celebrations and protests in the morning. They still take the day for workers seriously here.

    • Rob 3.1

      Where in Siberia do you work Rosy?

      • Tim 3.1.1

        It might be India Rob … where they’ve been observing the May/Labour day in one form or another since the 1920’s in various places – you know – that place where Steven Joyce is pinning his next hopes on to provide edjakayshun to the masses. Trouble is – he may very well have to look at visa requirements and the manner in which many of its nationals have been treated to date. I’ve no doubt the contingent currently visiting the Weltec joint initiative will be treated with the utmost politeness, but they shouldn’t be under any illusions as to how others sampling NZ’s tertiary sector have been treated.
        Oh, where’s that little South American jaunt by Ke and Co going at the mo btw?
        Let me know when something substantial eventuates, and that can at least cover the costs of the ‘jaunt’

      • Murray Olsen 3.1.2

        Could be Brazil too. They give May Day some prominence. You’re supposed to like them, Rob, because your mate Simon made a whole new law just for Petrobras. He can’t have noticed that it’s not a private company.

      • freedom 3.1.3

        Go to Berlin on MayDay and try flashing that smug grin Rob, you will get it firmly rammed back into your facile gob.

      • rosy 3.1.4

        That’ll be Austria, Rob. I guess geography and history we’re not your strong subjects at school?

        • Paul 3.1.4.1

          He probably hasn’t heard of it.
          He’ll have heard of North Korea and the other countries they rant about on ZB.

          • Anne 3.1.4.1.1

            Yeah… and he’ll have heard about that global weather thing. Ya know, the one wot says the world’s gonna heat up and we’re all gonna fry. I mean, wot about all those freeze-ups in Europe and Yankee Land? He’s listened to Leighton Smith wot is real clever. He talks to scientists n’ all those people and they say it’s lies. Typical Commies n’ terrorists all of us… always lying.

      • Foreign Waka 3.1.5

        This will mean Austria I guess. Strong worker tradition with an union – government agreement in place that has guarantied 60 years of social peace. Whilst the Anglo Saxon world has been on strike Austria was working and negotiating for fair wages – a lot higher then in NZ, fair condition 4 weeks holiday, free healthcare and dentist except specialist care, pension age after 40 years of contribution at 80% of the last 10 years income (means if you start working with 18 you retire with 58 if work was not interrupted) and proper elder care.
        Well the down side is – soooo many people in a very small place.

        • rosy 3.1.5.1

          Exactly, Foreign Waka.

          Wonderful to see a day for standing up for people, not companies… and so many ordinary people – old, young, kids and right across the social strata. The Kommunist party picnic in Votiv Park with the ‘Happy Austria Band’ playing was absolutely full (imagine the response to a picnic like that in one of Auckland’s biggest parks), Rathausplatz was standing room only, we left with a rousing rendition of ‘the internationale’ still ringing in our ears.

          So many people of all ages understanding the meaning of both solidarity and co-operation rather than our adversarial labour relations and labour laws that don’t protect workers (and in the end won’t protect the employers either). Sobering to see the marching of people from Turkey, Syria, Iran, Tunisia and other places – still so many places without the most basic right to fight for better conditions.

          Respect for labour (although I’d not pretend it was universal) is one of the very good things about living here. New Zealand has a very long way to go in this regard. Imagine if this respect could again be returned to one of the very many good things about living in New Zealand.

          • Foreign Waka 3.1.5.1.1

            I am not so much a fan of the Kommunist party but I am 100% for social justice. NZ has not much of a history so there is also not much of a collective memory of events and tragedies like in Europe. This has an advantage when it comes to an almost naive sense of adventure but the other side is of cause that politicians have a field day with manipulating the masses.

            • rosy 3.1.5.1.1.1

              “I am not so much a fan of the Kommunist party but I am 100% for social justice”

              Agree. But I did enjoy that in the spirit of the day they could be left alone to do their thing – not a political rally – but an inclusive picnic.

              Yes, I do think it’s the collective memory that, not so much drives tolerance, but has resulted in lessons about diversity of political thought.

  4. AsleepWhileWalking 4

    *
    Charity van feeding 800 people, recent changes to Social Securities Act not yet in place – worse to come.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10880778

    • locus 4.1

      And this tinpot government keeps using the excuse that our economy is being affected by world recession….. or the earthquake …. or the laziness of people who’d rather not work for a living …. or the increase in sunspot activity this year

      plenty of rich countries out there buying NZ goods and services, plenty of rich travellers coming to NZ, tax cuts so all kiwis have more money to spend, and an ever increasing number of very wealthy NZers who are trickling their wealth down to the masses – not

      maybe the increasing poverty in all NZ rural towns and cities is just the result of four years of miserable shonkey ill-advised government economic policy and legislation removing workers’ protections

      • Populuxe1 4.1.1

        Actually we are still affected by the world recession and the earthquake (only someone who doesn’t live in Christchurch could come out with crap like that). Tourism is dropping off because it’s increasingly expensive to come here and we are in an export battle with countries producing much the same things we do but closer to the primary markets. Certainly the current government are making things worse by following neo-lib austerity philosophy, but they are not making it up entirely. Peak oil and climate change are only going to make things worse.

        • locus 4.1.1.1

          thankyou Populuxe for your correction – (perhaps i should hve added /sarc tag)

          of course people living in Christchurch are still affected by the earthquake…. that’s a given since the shonkey government has failed the people living there…. i just find it pitiful that the earthquake is whinged about by the government as one of the reasons for NZ’s poor economic performance

          but yes…the Brownlie mismanagement and failure to adequately support those with damaged homes and businesses bankrupted from the earthquake probably does add to the abject performance in NZ’s social statistics.

          “Tourism is dropping off” ?
          In 2012, direct tourism value increased 2.5 percent, while tourist operators reduced the number of people they employed by 0.6 percent. Businesses doing okay but shedding workers…. http://www.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/industry_sectors/Tourism/tourism-satellite-account-2012/tourism-employment.aspx

          Our exporters may be having a hard time due to this government’s policies that have created an overvalued dollar but our biggest trade partners are countries whose economies are growing http://www.treasury.govt.nz/economy/overview/2012/22.htm

          As for peak oil – the Nacts can’t use this as a reason for poor economic performance and increasing poverty in NZ. The government’s tax take from NZ’s oil and gas production and royalties is as high as it’s ever been, and the NZ economy is less exposed to increases in oil prices than many of our competitors’

    • AsleepWhileWalking 4.2

      Sadly, this guy is one of thousands in the same position. Surprisingly guilt bashing those who aren’t presently in work doesn’t create jobs for them.

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff-nation/assignments/job-cuts-have-you-been-affected/8613779/Job-cuts-Older-people-on-the-scrap-heap

    • Bill 4.3

      Unfortunately, the fact that churches appear to be ‘picking up the tab’/ ‘filling the gap’ or whatever, will be viewed by the Nats as an endorsement of their welfare roll-backs. No-one starved. State assistance wasn’t necessary afterall.

      Volunteers and the private/corporate sector (Church and supermarkets in this instance) have it covered. Moving along….

    • Ruobeil 4.4

      While those 800 continue their SKY subs, Cigs and buying from the corner dairy.

      • Bill 4.4.1

        So every single one of those people smokes, subscribes to sky tv and can afford to do their shopping at the dairy. Sure.

      • Tim 4.4.2

        And of course Ruobeil, we MUST PUNISH anyone out of work/made redundant/retired for simply assuming they have a right to access media – especially that which was once intended for all but has since been commercialised to the extent they must pay! Why those dirty filthy bennies should not be allowed to witness sporting events, engage in political discourse or express an opinion. MUST PUNISH at all costs!

        “While those 800 continue their SKY subs, Cigs and buying from the corner dairy”

        You left out paying for an internet connection among other things. And I’m not sure why supporting small business (such as the struggling corner dairy) is such a bad thing.
        I make a point of supporting mine – and I do so by ONLY purchasing obvious ‘loss-leaders’ at the supermarket.

        Those bennies, the indigent, the struggling aye: MUST PUNISH, MUST ISOLATE, MUST not allow them to participate in society in the same way you do.
        If I had my way….. I’d put ’em all the the army – show ’em some discipline! (not)

        • fender 4.4.2.1

          I’m sure Ruobile would like to see voting rights removed from those 800 and all bennies as well.

          • Ruobeil 4.4.2.1.1

            If you’re dumb enough to choose SKY TV over food for your family, you probably wouldn’t do something as responsible such as voting.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 4.4.2.1.1.1

              If you’re dumb enough to believe the shit you type I expect you’re nothing but wingnut trash.

        • Ruobeil 4.4.2.2

          So SKY is the Only media available to access? Yeah right.

          SKY TV or food on the table? A difficult choice.

          Support the local dairy and pay twice the price of the supermarket.

          Another difficult choice.

          • felix 4.4.2.2.1

            You do realise the whole ‘Sky vs food’ bit is something you just made up though, don’t you?

      • emergency mike 4.4.3

        So do you get paid to spread this demonizing the poor shit or is something you’re happy to do for free?

  5. The Herald is trying to drum up support for a Maurice for Mayor campaign initially started by the slithery one.

    The right are calling it a “circuit breaker” for local government. Given the Government’s refusal to recognise the legitimate aspirations of Aucklanders as expressed by their elected representatives installing a Government lacky into the top job could be called a circuit breaker. But the inner city loop, the desire for a compact urban form, a living wage policy and proper treatment of the trade unions will all be pipe dreams if this happened.

    Cameron Brewer was reported as praising Williamson’s ministerial experience. He does have this but used to advocate for such bizarre things as the privatisation of roads. Auckland’s congestion built up during the 1990s when he was Transport Minister as money was diverted from Auckland to ensuring pristine roads for the electorates of King Country and Ashburton.

    And Brewer says that Auckland’s relationship with Central Government is the worst it has been since the 1970s. He is probably right. Back in 1976 Muldoon torpetoed Robbie’s mass transit program and ensured that Auckland sprawled and was committed to a never ending need to build roads.

    It could actually be a good thing for Williamson to run. This would energise what could be otherwise a rather dull election.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10880795

    • Ruobeil 5.1

      Except those who want the CRL don’t want to pay for it.

      • framu 5.1.1

        whose that exactly and wheres your evidence?

        it would be nice if you actually had something to say for once

      • The Al1en 5.1.2

        “Except those who want the CRL don’t want to pay for it.”

        I don’t even live in Auk, but as the crl is a common sense policy, I’m all for my taxes going to part fund it, and at least 100% more than I want my cut to fund $1000pw tax cuts for rich pricks.

        And Ruob, fuck off.

        • Ruobeil 5.1.2.1

          Common sense? In your opinion.

          Didn’t realize you spoke for the rest of NZ.

          • The Al1en 5.1.2.1.1

            “Common sense? In your opinion.”

            Yeah, that’s why the first word in my post was I.

            “Didn’t realize you spoke for the rest of NZ.”

            Not yet, sure, but again, I or I’m is used three times with not one we or us.

            Try harder, fallout boy.

        • David H 5.1.2.2

          And I don’t live in AK either. But I agree it’s needed. And it would be a way better use of public money instead of the So called Holiday Highways.

          Oh and yes I also agree Fuck Off Ruob.

      • karol 5.1.3

        Mate, those of us who want the CRL are already paying for (the lack of) it: extra time in the car burning petrol because of the clogged traffic; high costs of rail and bus, plus the extra time sitting in trains outside Britomart waiting for a berth, etc, etc.

        • Ruobeil 5.1.3.1

          Remind me how many cars it will take off the roads.

          • prism 5.1.3.1.1

            Liebour
            Is someone trying to be clever and take the pi..? Bit juvenile I think. Then again perhaps the Rube’s name means something to the initiated.

    • muzza 5.2

      Now its easy to see what the rainbow speeh was all about innit!

  6. just saying 6

    The Daily Blog has announced new bloggers:

    In addition to Charles Chauvel, the following new bloggers will be joining The Daily Blog line-up:

    Penny Hulse – Deputy Mayor of the Auckland SuperCity
    Stuart Nash – Former Labour Party MP
    Mika – Artist, performer and gay rights activist
    Julie Fairey – Feminist blogger & local councillor
    Matt Robson – Former Alliance MP & disarmament commentator
    Harmeet Sooden – Human Rights Advocate
    James Macbeth Dann – Christchurch blogger
    Michael Timmins – International Human Rights Lawyer
    The Jackal – Left wing political blogger
    Latifa Daud (Life on Wheels) – disability rights advocate
    Dianne Khan – Education Blogger at Save our Schools
    The Nomad – blogging out of Africa

    Nice of them to offer Stuart Nash the opportunity to present a right-wing perspective.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 6.1

      OMG it’s a onslaught of lefties!

    • karol 6.2

      Particularly very good to see Penny Hulse, Charles Chauvel, Judy Fairey and Matt Robson there.

      Don’t know some of the others.

    • rosy 6.3

      “Nice of them to offer Stuart Nash the opportunity to present a right-wing perspective.”

      🙂 Very charitable.

    • Private Baldrick 6.4

      My turnip’s been offered a blogging position as well.

  7. AsleepWhileWalking 7

    Female truck driver awarded over $60K after sexual harassment
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/8618450/63k-for-harassed-female-truck-driver

  8. Hey backwater areas get with the program, after all joyce has told you to.

    “the application of technology and capital to their (non-backwater regions) natural resource endowments has yielded high returns because of export earnings.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10880754

    Oh good oh then no worries.

    “The opposition to these moves will need to remain focused to stop them and we must stop them because as shell says it would take 14 days to cap a major oil leak but remember the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico took 87 days to contain and the Montara oil spill and gas leak in the Timor Sea, off the northern coast of Western Australia took 74 days to contain so those assurances mean little, they are just dreams and hopes. My dream and hope is that tangata whenua with like-minded people will work together to halt their plans.”

    http://mars2earth.blogspot.co.nz/2013/05/planning-to-exploit.html

  9. Chrissy 9

    Just read The scribblings of Audrey Young regarding Parekura Horomia.What a poor excuse for a human being she is and the Herald should be ashamed to have published the article.

    • veutoviper 9.1

      +1, Chrissy.

      Here is the link to this dispicable article

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10880721

      Young is certainly getting her just deserts in the comments, however: and there are now two other opinion pieces up on the Herald online with views very different to Young’s.

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10880766

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10880773

      • karol 9.1.1

        If there are positive views of Horomia, I don’t object to Young’s piece. And, after all, it only reinforces that Young is not a friend to the left, and has some pretty regressive views.

    • Lanthanide 9.2

      I don’t see anything wrong with her piece at all. I don’t buy into this “lets not speak ill of the dead” crap. She was hardly disrespectful.

      Compare it to the treatment of Thatcher, a lot of which was very nasty which I don’t necessarily approve of, but on the other hand Carol wrote a post here that was a straight up appraisal of Thatcher and what she meant. I don’t see this piece by Audrey being particularly out of line with Carol’s post in terms of content.

      • Colonial Viper 9.2.1

        “Compare it to the treatment of Thatcher…”

        You’ve gotta be kidding. Thatcher, an ardent supporter of Pol Pot and Pinochet, someone responsible for hundreds of thousands (perhaps millions?) of poverty driven premature deaths (including some suicides) amongst the British working class.

        I had a celebratory shot of Glenfiddich when I heard she’d passed on and would’ve drunk the entire bottle if I hadn’t been driving.

        • Lanthanide 9.2.1.1

          ?

          I was just making the point that Audrey’s post was more like Carol’s post about Thatcher: hardly disrespectful or mean spirited at all – just a straight-up opinion piece, yet Chrissey (and other commenters on the article itself) seemed to think Audrey was being incredibly rude and that it “wasn’t the time or place” for her article.

          • Colonial Viper 9.2.1.1.1

            Audrey’s silly quip at the end about Horomia’s death being fussy was probably the most tasteless part of the article.

  10. freedom 10

    http://rt.com/news/obama-close-guantanamo-terrorism-643
    The situation at Guantanamo is disingenuous to say the least.

    Obama is Commander in Chief.

    The USA has been using military rule in all matters regarding the War on Terror whenever it suits. The entire operation at Guantanamo is under military jurisdiction. So all that has to happen, to release the 86 innocent men held captive for over a decade, is for the Commander in Chief to order that particular military operation to cease, and relocate those not already cleared to any one of the several hundred active military bases or containment centres the US currently operates worldwide. It is that simple.

    Guantanamo is also a very real mark of shame for NZ. Not only because it highlights the increasingly servile attitude of recent governments towards the USA, but harms our independent character as a Nation. NZ no longer has the mana to stand up to the USA, ask why they allow this obvious abuse of human rights to continue and as a Nation we are all the weaker for it. Like all good predators there is one thing the USA understands, the weak are always the easiest prey.

    • Populuxe1 10.1

      (1) “The USA has been using military rule in all matters regarding the War on Terror whenever it suits.” Well, yes, I suppose that might have something to do with the word “war”, though that is a dangerously ambiguious word.

      (2) “Guantanamo is also a very real mark of shame for NZ.” Because the flea feels bad because it can’t stop the dog it’s on from attacking a cat? Nah. I generally reserve my sense of shame for things that I or my country have direct influence over.

      • freedom 10.1.1

        (1) Guantanamo is run as a military outpost, and is under direct control of the Commander if he so chooses.
        (2) NZ damn well does have influence over whether it stands tall and publicly calls out the USA on the entire operation at Guantanamo. Our Government has repeatedly chosen not to.

        • Populuxe1 10.1.1.1

          (1) hence military rule – it’s a military outpost. Any attempt to relocate it to American soil gets blocked by the Republicans.

          (2) Maybe you’d like to narrow it down to about ten international causes we haven’t any skin in. It always amazes me how the priority usually shifts straight to the evils of the US. Why not the plight of the Uighurs in China, for example (though I note that even JK apparently brings up China’s human rights record diplomatically)? Why aren’t we speaking out about the plight of indigenous peoples in Brazil? Russia’s ruthless oppression of gay people? All those things deserve attention, and countless more besides – where to begin? Compared to all that, Guantanamo is small fry.

          • freedom 10.1.1.1.1

            (1) Obama is Commander in Chief, pretty sure we already covered that ( and the USA has over 150 active military bases around the world to utilize, which are not on American soil)
            (2) they are not the ones who asked us to travel to the other side of the world and kill people

            • Ruobeil 10.1.1.1.1.1

              And it was Labour who sent troops to Iraq (attached to the British forces) and Afghanistan.

              Which i support.

              • Pascal's bookie

                It always cracks me up when rightoes bring up the Iraq deployment, summarised here:

                Two rotations of 61 military engineers, known as Task Force Rake, operated in Iraq from September 26, 2003 to September 25, 2004.[113][114] They were deployed to undertake humanitarian and reconstruction tasks consistent with UN Security Council Resolution 1483; they were not part of the invading force. While in Iraq the unit was under British command (South East Iraq) and was based in Basra

                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multi-National_Force_%E2%80%93_Iraq#List_of_countries_in_the_coalition

                We went in as part of the reconstruction team, and didn’t renew the deployment as it was obvious even then that Bush was fucking it up just as the fucked up the Afghanistan mission. But ya’ll spout off on it as if it shows National was right or some shit.

              • Murray Olsen

                You should go yourself, backward Liebour. I could contribute to a one way ticket to Kabul.

          • Pascal's bookie 10.1.1.1.2

            It always amazes me, on the other hand, that people come up with long lists of things people must demand from other countries before they demand things of the US. As if to say that unless a person does all, they must do none.

            If those things concern you, you should speak up about them and make your demands. I doubt anyone would knock you for it.

            I notice that the ones you listed are all internal matters. Not to say that they are unimportant, but it is a distinction that’s important in international relations.

            I do think we should be asking the US about torture, for example, at every opportunity, such as when Eric Holder shows up here shortly.

            The facts are clear. The US has signed and ratified the convention against torture. That convention requires that they investigate, with a view to prosecution, all credible reports of torture. The targets of the investigation are to be both the torturers and those who authorised them.

            The convention protects our soldiers, and others. When it is fragrantly breached, that protection is weakened. The US claims to be the shining light on the hill, and the leader of the free west. It claims to be the best example of liberal enlightenment values. And yet she refuses to fulfill her obligations under the convention, to which we are both parties.

            Given all that, why on earth shouldn’t we talk to them about and ask what is going on, and why how is that tied to the awful treatment of indigenous peoples in Brazil?

            • Populuxe1 10.1.1.1.2.1

              “Internal matters” – what a lovely euphemism

              • Pascal's bookie

                It’s not a euphemism at all Pop.

                They are horrible and outrageous things. They are also internal matters. If you think international relations should make no distinction between internal and international matters, then make that case. But if not, then the distinction stands.

                I’ll note that those two words were the only things you cared to address, and that you did so dishonestly, as is your custom.

          • Ruobeil 10.1.1.1.3

            Good points .

            Google China’s 9 dash line and have a look at their antics in the Philippines (Scarborough Shoal), Malaysia and Vietnam.

            Also the territory they have occupied in India.

            • Pascal's bookie 10.1.1.1.3.1

              Yeah, China does heaps of nasty shit. It’s good that the Greens make a stink about it when their leaders show up here eh? Fat lot of good it does Norman with the kiwiblog crew, but well.

              And have a watch of this:

              http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/video/2013/mar/06/james-steele-america-iraq-video

              there’s even a 5 minute version, and a text story. Lots to absorb.
              Weird how James Steele isn’t a widely known name eh? With so much history to him. He’s been a busy boy.

      • Jackal 10.1.2

        Populuxe1

        Because the flea feels bad because it can’t stop the dog it’s on from attacking a cat?

        Describing New Zealand as a flea should give you a sense of shame Populuxe1… Although somewhat true in terms of Nationals failed administration, it’s not true of New Zealand in general.

  11. If you no longer want to be a ‘Dumb or Mad’ investor in Mighty River Power – you have until 11.59pm Wednesday 1 May 2013 to withdraw your money!

    “Supplementary Disclosure

    This information is being provided to ensure anyone wishing to invest in Mighty River Power is fully informed when they do.

    On 18 April 2013, two opposition political parties, the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand and the New Zealand Labour Party, announced separate proposals for electricity sector regulatory reform, should they be elected in 2014. The jointly announced proposals differ in a number of respects, but a common feature is the establishment of a state agency to act as a single buyer of wholesale electricity from generators.

    These proposals are in respect of the electricity industry generally, and are not specific to Mighty River Power. However, the announcements increase regulatory uncertainty for Mighty River Power by raising the possibility that a future government may enact legislation that materially changes the structure of the New Zealand electricity industry.

    How do I find out more?

    Further information is contained within the Supplementary Disclosure Document dated 22 April 2013 that has been published by the Crown and Mighty River Power Limited. You can view the Supplementary Disclosure Document here, or by calling 0800 90 30 90 and requesting a copy. The Supplementary Disclosure Document is supplemental to, and should be read in conjunction with, the Mighty River Power Share Offer Document.

    What if I wish to withdraw my application?

    The publication of the Supplementary Disclosure Document means that applicants who have already applied for Shares in Mighty River Power have the right to withdraw their Application in the manner described below. If you withdraw your Application, you will not be allocated any Shares in Mighty River Power in respect of that Application and your Application payment will be refunded to you. We expect you will receive any refund between 14 and 28 May 2013.

    If your Application for Shares is dated on or before 23 April 2013, and your Application Form is received by 5.00pm on 3 May 2013, you have the right to withdraw using one of the methods described below:

    by calling 0800 90 30 90; or
    by completing the online withdrawal form which is accessible from here.
    The last time to withdraw is 11.59pm on Wednesday 1 May 2013.”

    ___________________________________________________________

    Seen this?

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/labour-greens-policy-far-down-list-mrps-biggest-worries-says-woodward-bd-139402

    “Wellington institutional broking firm Woodward Partners ranks the risks to Mighty River Power of the Green and Labour parties’ new electricity policy as moderate, and far lower than many other risks the company faces. …..”

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption/anti-privatisation campaigner’

    A Spokesperson for the Switch Off Mercury Energy group

    http://www.switchoffmercuryenergy.org

  12. karol 12

    Monsanto! argggghhh!

    The worlds’ food giants are extending their control over world food systems by patenting everyday vegetables, such as broccoli, onions, melons, lettuce and cucumber.

    Previously the European Union had resisted allowing patents on food items that involve natural processes such as this, but the new decisions are signaling a change in favour of giants Monsanto and Syngenta. …

    Making it illegal for someone to grow food for any reason seems strange to me. But tightening the grip that these companies have on the world food market could have disastrous consequences.

    How can this be resisted?

    • prism 12.1

      When The Hollies sang “All I need is the air that I breathe and to love you” they might have said a mouthful. That might be the only thing we get to put in our mouths! (I have heard that there is, was?, a cult called the Breatharians that cut down on eating by breathing deeply and presumably so renewing their blood with oxygen.)

    • muzza 12.2

      People need to be very aware of the legislation changes, such as are in the *food safety act*, the *natural health products bill*, and so on. The huge legislative changes, have come with warnings, as to their content, intent and consequences.

      Alongside any treaty’s/agreements which NZ has, allowing this type of insidious corporate take-over to occur, because once the hooks are in, and natural process distorted, controlled and owned, can the clocks be turned back, I imagine not!

    • freedom 12.3

      warning: cinematic references ahead

      The TPPA is realistically, our Last Temptation.

      Real seeds, stored shared and kept in the public domain are a natural and biologically crucial factor in Earth’s biosphere. Monsanto would have you believe that Earth’s seeds are a poisoned well that threatens the growth of the oasis, akin to Satan’s presence in the holy desert, yet it is they themselves who are the threat to life. Monsanto are like the whore that offers capitulation to the carpenter. They are the illusion of a promise, sent to test. A snake dancing in shadows of it’s own fires. Determining where we are ultimately vulnerable to its lethal strike. Accept it’s guile and we fail and we will live out lives that decry our potential. Like the shaggy carpenter we foresee a better life and want to step into the brighter future. What is promised though is nothing but slavery greed and malice. It is not till years later that we have proof of the illusion and by then it is too late to go back without admitting there will be tremendous pain and even more sacrifice.

      Enslaving mankind by taking ownership of Earth’s seeds, saves no-one.

    • Populuxe1 12.4

      “The worlds’ food giants are extending their control over world food systems by patenting everyday vegetables, such as broccoli, onions, melons, lettuce and cucumber.”

      Technically that is incorrect – they can’t copyright “everyday” vegetables, they can only copyright seed lines they have created themselves. Admittedly that does mean that these companies are using some very underhanded tactics to promote use of their seed stocks, but they can’t sue people for growing any old vegetable.

      • emergency mike 12.4.1

        “…these companies are using some very underhanded tactics to promote use of their seed stocks, but they can’t sue people for growing any old vegetable.”

        Although they do manage to sue farmers who want nothing to do with their products. ‘Underhanded’ is much too polite.

  13. Pete 13

    NZ Herald (1 May 2013): Fonterra to cut 300 jobs
    Me: Hmm. Bad news. Maybe they’re not doing so well, financially
    NZ Herald (28 March 2013): Profit soars at Fonterra
    Me: WTF?

    • McFlock 13.1

      Says it all, really.

      • Colonial Viper 13.1.1

        I’m waiting for the axe to fall on hundreds of ANZ and National Bank staff. Not because the banks are losing money, no sir-ree, it’s because a billion in profits per year is not enough for the capitalist owners.

        • McFlock 13.1.1.1

          Me two. an ANZ cashier I as talking to was adamant there would b no branch closures. Her branch is literally across the street – directly – from a nat bank branch.

          And expanding kiwibank closed one blocks away from moray place.

          • Pete 13.1.1.1.1

            The closure of NZ Post in the Exchange was a bad idea. The wait time at Moray Place is quite frustrating. Or so I found it when I worked in that part of town. I’m sure I’m not the only one.

          • McFlock 13.1.1.1.2

            Me too.
            Wednesday is pub night 🙂

          • muzza 13.1.1.1.3

            She might be in for a surprise then – There are closures coming, (blue and green branches) the location of the branch will decide that. Some NB branches will reamin, with branding changes, and some ANZ branches will also go.

            Banks merge, people lose jobs, and branches close, its as simple as that!

            Profits will be protected at all costs, until there is only a couple left in NZ.

            Who wants to take a guess at the next bank merger?

    • Paul 14.1

      “His office has refused to say what the Prime Minister will be doing on Saturday instead, or whether he had been asked not to attend on Saturday.”\
      Wonder if we’ll ever find out.

  14. North 15

    The Artist Taxi Driver. Telling it, harshly, how it is !

  15. North 16

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/8620242/Labour-Greens-in-lockstep-to-far-left-PM

    What a simpering scurvy little punk ! All hell has already broken loose for thousands of poor families ShonKey Python. You knew it would happen but you didn’t give a stuff, indeed you facilitated it ! You sought it. Ordinary people are expendable fodder to you and you try to say you’re our mate. Fuck Off You Crazy Sociopathic Pig !

    • emergency mike 16.1

      Looks like he’s got his profound goodbye speech all ready to go:

      “”In the end, whenever I’m gone I’ll look back and say I did my best, and I hope you like it,” he said.”

      • North 16.1.1

        That bitch doesn’t give a fuck what we like ! When he goes (however that occurs) he’ll report back to his masters in Wall Street and the City of London and after counting their shekels they’ll clap their effete lily-whites and call for “bubbles”.

        • locus 16.1.1.1

          don’t forget the backscratching simpering cap-doffing to the money-men and power-brokers in that paragon of human rights and democracy……China…..

          • Rhinocrates 16.1.1.1.1

            And don’t forget that “Labour’s” deputy Robertson so often reflexively loses control of his bodily functions at the thought that he might upset them that now he can’t decide whether he should wear brown or yellow trousers each morning and has to toss a coin.

    • karol 16.2

      LOL. John Key is such a joker! He says the Greens are too far left, so he’s throwing in NZ’s lot with communist China!

      • rosy 16.2.1

        Yeah, I laughed at that too. I think the irony whooshed over his head at hurricane force.

  16. North 17

    Watching Barry Lovegrove on Campbell Live. Establishes beyond a shadow of doubt the rank corruption attending the appointment of the latest Race Relations Commissioner.

    Banana Republic is where we’re at.

    Delighted to see a retired District Court judge prepared to pop up as Lovegrove has.

    Maybe there’ll be one prepared to recount that months ago the present Chief Judge of the District Court wrote to the Minister of Justice on at least two occasions expressing real concern about the shambles into which first Simon Power and then Collins have propelled the legal aid system.

    Result, not even a desultory reply. None at all. The Chief District Court Judge completely ignored. This IS banana republic. Papa Doc is alive and well in the Beehive.

    • vto 17.1

      Agree.

      This government refused to even acknowledge the law, again, and just went and did what it wanted. The law can get fucked, is what Judith Collins does by this action.

      • North 17.1.1

        Hey, don’t forget “Boss Hogg” Bennett. Wilful breach of privacy law for political bullying.

        “Piss off, I’ll do it again as and when suits !” Arrogant bitch !

      • prism 17.2.1

        Anne
        Seems that the retired judge has a good case. Soulder tapping – if everybody could operate in that loose way Junkie would have been out by lunchtime.

        • North 17.2.1.1

          I’m reminded of Boy George (I may corrupt the spelling) – “Karma Karma Karma Karma Karma Chameleon………”

          It is my fervent hope that Karma catches up with the receivers of that Taranaki farm Wood and Tapp, and that louse Lowe. That their names are shit in the ‘Naki. And that daily they suffer painful manifestations of that. Pretty rough when National Party rump gets fucked over by Shonkey Python and his ilk ?

          You know, daily when I look at what is happening under Shonkey Python and his band of amoral cargo-cultist opportunists, I come up with this – People Power. Eventually.

          Here’s a practical suggestion. Rabobank, the scum employer of the scum Wood, Tapp and Lowe. Offshoot of ASB isn’t it ? I bank with ASB. Don’t owe them a cracker.

          “Kia Ora Kiwibank. I used to be with {A}ustralian {S}ucky {B}ank…….could I have all my business with you please ?”

          I know, shoulda been with KB from its inception.

          • Anne 17.2.1.1.1

            That 3rd Degree programme left me in tears. I woke up this morning still angry and upset. What arseholes! Yes, the Grays (I think that was their name) would be Nat. voters but that is irrelevant. Their real crime was they dared to set up a local milk producing business and that angered the big milk boys. They had to be punished by the local branch of the JKey and Co. mafioso.

            I hope the bastards are run out of town and can never return.

      • Puddleglum 17.2.2

        What a parody of a government.

        Did Collins not consider that someone might ask the question about whether or not the Human Rights Act principles and criteria for appointing a Race Relations Commissioner had been followed?

        And the most revealing aspects are that (a) Michael Jones was asked to be the Commissioner as a first option (did he apply?); (b) Dame Susan Devoy did not apply herself; (c) Irene van Dyk (sp?) also made the ‘shortlist’ – presumably of those being shoulder tapped – ahead of Barry Lovegrove; (d) Lovegrove has been given no indication or reason as to why he was not even shortlisted.

        Unprincipled, cronyist and unethical.

        Does John Key still have confidence in his Minister of Justice? If ‘yes’, does he therefore believe that this selection process was an example of good process and best practice?

        • felix 17.2.2.1

          Yep, it’s becoming clear that the intention all along was to appoint a celebrity. Perhaps specifically a sports celebrity.

          I wonder who directed this marketing decision.

          • Anne 17.2.2.1.1

            Wait for the first big muck-up. It’s going to happen. Watch the victim/victims be turned into the guilty party/parties to save Devoy’s and Collin’s hides.

    • emergency mike 17.3

      Just watched the Campbell interview. Wow. Michael Jones was offered the job, Irene Van Dyk was shortlisted, Susan Devoy got a phone call from someone whose name she can’t even remember asking her to apply.

      This guy applied but didn’t make the shortlist:

      Former district court judge, MA in philosophy, a law practice in some of the poorest communities in NZ, panel member on the parole board, serious knowledge of the treaty, a deep and abiding connection to Northland and it’s Maori community, spent years working in Asia and Africa where he lectured on race relations.

      To that I’ll add ‘speaks intelligently and articulately’, in contrast to person that he refers to as ‘the incumbent’.

      • North 17.3.1

        Truth be known, there was no phone call at all. Who lives across the back fence from Sue ? Well, it’s that snippy Tony Ryall of course.

        All sorted within the time it takes to mow the back lawn on a Saturday morning and convert yet another of wife’s(?) bold check table cloths into a business shirt on the Elna.

        And you know………I’ve always been a bit reluctant to have the whole thing focus on Susan Devoy personally. There’s much, much that’s hugely admirable about her. But anyone else picked up from her few appearances and the Campbell Live interview that there’s something of this – “I’m not gonna say it, but really…….get fucked !” ? It’s not even a passive aggression. It’s just a bland – “Get fucked !” .

        She’s got the Collins Disease aye ?

        • Tim 17.3.1.1

          “All sorted within the time it takes to mow the back lawn on a Saturday morning and convert yet another of wife’s(?) bold check table cloths into a business shirt on the Elna.”

          🙂

          Do you reckon it’s Devoy that gives advice on the non-matching ties? I can’t think of any other explanation for the abomination

      • prism 17.3.2

        The NACT degenerates couldn’t consider asking Mr Lovegrove to fill the position – the comparison of quality to inferior cheap appearance politics would have been too great.

  17. BLiP 18

    And another one for the list, thanks Johnm I’m lovin’ it:

    I am not trying to tackle such issues in a “fearful” way ahead of the next election

  18. North 19

    3rd Degree TV3. Dennis Wood. Ex-cop. Present receiver. Current scum !

    • Anne 19.1

      Psychopaths are common in the Police Force. A licence to practice brutal power with impunity must be the attraction.

      Scum is too good a word for Dennis Wood!

    • prism 19.2

      How can a 27 year old be a police veteran – he is still wet behind the ears at that age? Trouble when you owe $5 million or near, that ‘s a big burden to cope with.

  19. xtasy 20

    I think now that Susan Devoid makes an excellent Race Relations Conciliator. She is excellently qualified, I suppose to speed up the “race to the bottom” of NZ in any race, be this horses, greyhounds, V8s, other cars and what else may qualify for a “race”.

    Race to the bottom, and smash, bank, hooray, we can start picking up the pieces and perhaps build something new out of any wreck resulting from this.

    That is my take on her.

  20. lprent 21

    Annoying. A Jetpack upgrade (for wordpress) just broke the site

    http://wordpress.org/support/topic/updating-jetpack-breaks-wordpress

    Cleared the plugin out and we’re back again.

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