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Open mike 01/06/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 1st, 2013 - 70 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…

70 comments on “Open mike 01/06/2013 ”

  1. Matthew Hooton 1

    This is pretty bad news for David Shearer: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/8743939/John-Key-takes-a-hit-in-integrity-stakes

    More people think John Key is a liar and have an improved impression of David Shearer, yet still far more want to vote for Key-led National than Shearer-led Labour government.

    • Tautoko Viper 1.1

      Up so early, Matthew? At least JK made the headline which matters.

    • LynWiper 1.2

      Titled ‘John Key takes a hit in integrity stakes’ it also said…

      ‘Labour leader David Shearer fares a bit better, with people more likely to have an improved opinion of his vision, actions or policies, truthfulness and trustworthiness.’

      ‘The same poll also asked people for the first time whether it was time for a change of government – and 49.1 per cent said yes. That was surprising because even some people who said they would vote for National thought it was time for a change’

      • rosy 1.2.1

        The same poll also asked people for the first time whether it was time for a change of government – and 49.1 per cent said yes. That was surprising because even some people who said they would vote for National thought it was time for a change

        This is a great reason for the soft centre of Nact being all concerned about poor kids… as well as front-footing a clean-up job on Lusk & Co right now. They know they still have time to retrieve the situation if they can lay the blame on a so-called ‘hard-right’ cabal and show they’ve been purged.

    • Ad 1.3

      The Nats have Key’s leadership and a hope that the economy will lift, V Labour’s weak leader and tonnes of electoral options.

      With National’s one asset corroding, you need to change sides Matthew and join our movement.

      We’re taking it all back – and then we’re going to redistribute it. 😉

    • Morrissey 1.4

      More people think John Key is a liar…

      Everybody knows John Key is a liar. He has even featured in the series “Liars of Our Time”.

      Even the obedient, bewildered souls of Epsom know Key is a liar, but they would never admit to it in a survey.

      • Lanthanide 1.4.1

        Everybody knows John Key is a liar. He has even featured in the series “Liars of Our Time”.

        Gosh! That seals it then!

      • Vertical Polarity 1.4.2

        You can fool some of the people all of the time.

      • TheContrarian 1.4.3

        He must be a lair. He made it to my self selected list of liars!

      • Populuxe1 1.4.4

        What you mean to say is:
        “Everybody knows John Key is a liar. He has even featured in the copy pasta spam I regularly post but TL/DR.”

        • Morrissey

          What you mean to say is:
          “Everybody knows John Key is a liar. He has even featured in the copy pasta spam I regularly post but TL/DR.”

          1.) So “copy pasta spam” is ALL this writer, i.e. moi, does, is it?

          I don’t think so….

          2.) “TL/DR”? Really? The “Liars of Our Time” posts are one, maybe two, lines at best. I know it’s beyond you to actually read anything by Noam Chomsky, but surely my little zingers are within your competence zone?

          (By the way: you should actually read some of the things Chomsky has written. He is really lucid, and easy to read. Don’t believe everything you’ve been told by the lunatic right fringe.)

    • Socialist Paddy 1.5

      Talking about bad news Matty have you seen all the news about Simon Lusk? You being a political commentator sort I suggest you concentrate on that, because that is where the real story is.

    • Paul 1.6


    • Paul 1.7


    • QoT 1.8

      Sorry, who are you again?

      • Paul 1.8.1

        I think he gets paid to write stuff. A bit like his friends who are being outed at the moment in the msm.

        • prism

          Who’s he? It’s impossible to follow the thinking on some comments when the reader can’t connect the dots and the reply is enigmatic. Why not put the name of your intended?

    • David H 1.9

      Must have wet the bed to be up so early

    • NickS 1.10


      Your spin is noted, and dismissed with extreme prejudice.

  2. LynWiper 2

    An interesting read


    “Oppressive systems are not all of a kind. They do, however, share an indifference to those whose inability to bear the privations of the imposed social order results in collapse, breakdown and death. The present British government, to give one example, has accustomed itself to the suicides of poor and disabled people cut off by its austerity programme. It encourages a narrative which suggests that such people are “merely” disturbed, that benefit recipients are selfish “scroungers”. What such systems cannot cope with is those who are able, by virtue of circumstance or force of personality, to turn that rage and distress outwards, rather than letting it consume them from within.

    Such people often become known to the police. We call them rebels, or activists, or colossal bloody headaches, depending on our point of view and place of employment. ”

    My admiration for all who refuse to be consumed from within.

  3. Ad 3


    People, I think this is required preparatory reading for those attending the Fabians this week on why the Austerity Orthodoxy is wrong and damaging, and why wealth distribution and jobs growth is far more important. While the context is US, we are at least as unequal as they are these days.

  4. Morrissey 4

    308 live bullets shot at the Mavi Marmara 3 years ago today.
    39 in the bodies of 9 murdered

    As you read the following horrific story, bear in mind that our own “Sir” Geoffrey Palmer lent his name to the infamous Palmer-Uribe “report”, which purported to exonerate the perpetrators of this crime…

    Three years on, the Mavi Marmara is still making waves
    May 31, 2013
    by SARAH COLBORNE, Director of Palestine Solidarity Campaign

    On 31 May 2010, the first Freedom Flotilla was sailing in international waters towards Gaza, carrying passengers and humanitarian aid on six ships, when it was attacked by Israeli forces at night, 72 miles off the coast of Israel. On the Mavi Marmara, the largest ship of the flotilla with passengers from 32 countries, nine passengers were killed and 156 were injured, 52 of them seriously.

    Three years on, those responsible for Israel’s illegal assault and murders on the Mavi Marmara are being pursued. In Istanbul, a case is ongoing against four senior ranking Israeli commanders, with evidence that they had ‘personally ordered the operation’, filed by 490 victims of the attack.

    Sitting in the courtroom in Istanbul last week, hearing testimonies from passengers and crew, took me back to the attack on 31 May 2010. At night, whilst most of the passengers were either asleep or starting their first prayer of the day, inflatable boats crowded with Israeli commandos surrounded the ship and attempted to board. Helicopters whirred overhead, as Israeli commandos on ropes came down onto the ship. I could hear the bullets whizzing through the air, and I covered my face as teargas and smoke bombs were shot onto the ship. But it was when I saw Cevdet Kiliclar’s body brought to the back of the ship – shot through the forehead by Israeli commandos whilst filming the attack – that I realised the commandos were shooting to kill. The UN Human Rights Council Report found that 308 live bullets had been fired by Israeli commandos on the Mavi Marmara – 39 of those bullets were taken out of the 9 who were killed. In court, Cevdet’s widow sat stoically, with families of the others killed, to hear evidence of the brutality of the Israeli commandoes.

    One passenger talked about being shot in the stomach. Another of being shot in the hip and intestines. Yet another of being shot through his head, and the bullet coming out of the other side of his face. Of the multiple operations that some of them had undergone as a result of their injuries. Of passengers being shot whilst lying on the ground, and then kicked repeatedly. Of seeing what they thought was rain coming through the hatch from the roof of the ship, but then realising it was blood. Of being handcuffed with cable ties despite being seriously wounded. Of our long and slow journey to Ashdod port, in suffocating heat inside the ship because the Israeli commandos had broken the handles to the door to the room where the airconditioning unit was housed. Of the humiliation endured under interrogation and whilst in prison. And witnesses talked about the beatings continuing right up to when they got on the aircraft in Tel Aviv. One talked about an Israeli soldier in Tel Aviv airport kicking his leg, and when it didn’t break, he was forced to the ground and another Israeli soldier joined in, kicking and stamping on his leg.

    Passengers talked about the continuing psychological trauma that they have suffered. And crew members talked about…

    Read more….

    About the Palmer-Uribe farce….

  5. AsleepWhileWalking 5

    If a single parent medically certified unable to work the 20 hours a week required to qualify for the IWTC of $60/week remains disabled to this extent prior to their child turning 18, that means $3,120 less a year or just over $56K prior to that child becoming an adult.

    Fair? John Key thinks so.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 5.1

      Ahh, look! Someone else has spotted it too.

      “Speaking of reality. According to the latest MSD benefit fact sheets (which tell us, incidentally, that the majority of welfare beneficiaries are Pakeha) there are about 2000 people recieving an Invalid’s benefit who are caring for dependent children aged under six years.

      Let’s be conservative and assume that there are that many again caring for children between six and twelve and that they’re caring for 1.5 children each and you have 3000 primary school children right there who are growing up in poverty while being cared for by a person suffering from a physical and/or mental illness.

      I think it’s safe to assume that these children are over-represented in the cohort of kids who are turning up to school without food. We keep hearing that the solution to this problem is ‘parental responsibility’, not state (or corporate) welfare. But it’s not the fault of these children they were born to parents with depression or schizophrenia or a painful skeletal-muscular disorder that requires that parent to remain heavily medicated. And those parents can’t just magically stop suffering from chronic diseases that compromise their ability to care for their children. Most parents love their kids – if they would they could.

      There’s no actual proof that Nisbet’s bludgers exist. The children enumerated in the MSD Benefit fact sheets do exist – but this is where the idiocy of welfare-bludger rhetoric has bought us. People literally want children growing up in conditions of terrible poverty to go hungry because of their commitment to a race-based political fantasy.”

  6. Paul 6

    Not sure the puppeteers will appreciate this headline.


    • vto 6.1

      These people are so much worse than dole bludgers, who don’t even register on the scale required for these rip-off pricks. Scum.

      As are the people who vote for and perpetuate these schemes.

    • muzza 6.2

      How much *news*, does the NZH recycle – How many times has that very same article been run in the past 12 months!

      It does not matter, how/where you hide the *money*, when its worthless, its worthless, so the conversation is mostly semantics, around the tax take v borrowing etc.

      At the end of the day, if it comes crashing down, whereever the *money* is, it will either be gone, or be worthless!

      As an aside, the puppeteers will not give a toss, the amounts talked about in that article, don’t register a beat, at puppeteer level!

    • ianmac 6.3

      That summary at the end says a lot Paul! We wage/salary earners cannot avoid under PAYE. But these people:

      • 193 New Zealanders own or control assets worth more than $50 million

      • 161 have filed tax returns for the 2012 financial year

      • 107 have declared their personal income is less than $70,000”

      Wonder how much tax Mr Key pays?

      • prism 6.3.1

        I wonder why there can’t be a rule of thumb adopted to these filthy rich people. Say take their asset valuation, work out an accepted and modest return, then work out what 33% of that would be and compare it to the tax declaration, and take the highest amount.

        When the neo libs got in first they were screwing funeral directors who didn’t prepay the right amount of tax on their expected income, as if they knew how many dead bodies they would be receiving each year in advance. My idea is sane and reasonable, though not leaving as much wiggle room for reducing profitable businesses with tax losses deliberately created.

      • TheContrarian 6.3.2

        As key is paid from the public purse he’ll be paying the correct tax rate. Pretty hard to dodge. On the investments, well, he is under more scrutiny than a private citizen so it would be very surprising if he was involved in tax dodging.

  7. vto 7

    If it is racist to depict poor people as lazy, boozy and brown, is it also racist to depict rich people as greedy, selfish and white?

    • weka 7.1

      What do you mean ‘if’?

    • TheContrarian 7.2

      Interesting comment, vto

    • rosy 7.3

      “is it also racist to depict rich people as greedy, selfish and white?”

      No. Because no-one stereotypes all white people are greedy, selfish and rich.

      It may be derogatory, but even then, depicting all rich people as greedy, selfish and white doesn’t disadvantage them in the allocation of social, political and financial resources, unlike when depicting poor people as lazy, brown and boozy.

      • Populuxe1 7.3.1

        Apart from Hone Warawira, perhaps /sarc
        Actually given the nature of satirical cartoons, nobody gets to look particularly pretty in them. That’s sort of the point of caricature – everyone gets stereotyped to an exaggerated extreme.

  8. georgecom 8

    With the garment factory collapse in Bangladesh still a recent memory, anyone wanting to help workers in Asian countries may like to become a donor to Union Aid http://unionaid.org.nz/

    As little as $10 a month can be donated. It will make a real difference, helping third world workers get organised. It won’t help the people who died in the factory collapse but can help others in similar circumstances.

  9. prism 9

    Kim Hill on Radionz this morning interviewed this man with interesting ideas that weka talked about. Worth a listen.
    Allan Savory: restoring grasslands ( 28′ 37″ )
    08:10 President and co-founder of the Savory Institute, which promotes large-scale
    restoration of the world’s grasslands through holistic management.

    This is Weka’s original comment. Note she has put a link to make it easy for us to get background. I suggest that all the smartarses have a look and a think before they start raising their peacock feathers of superior knowledge.

    weka 11
    31 May 2013 at 1:21 pm
    Kim Hill is interviewing Alan Savory, 8am Sat morning. It’s promoted as being about restoring grasslands, but Savory has pioneered meat production on grassland while building fertility and soil (something we don’t currently do), and is very experienced in ecological farming (including tech we could adopt here).
    I’m hoping he will also talk about biological/natural systems of carbon sequestration, a must listen for anyone interested in CC and how farming can be a positive solution to some of the CC problems (not just mitigating industrial farming negatives). Savory has a pretty good TED talk too.

    • weka 9.1

      Thanks prism, haven’t had a chance to listen yet. Did he talk about climate change/carbon sequestration?

      • Colonial Viper 9.1.1

        No, it was a bit of a peculiar discussion. It seemed to go against all conventional wisdom of overstocking being a prime problem causing deterioration in land quality and desertification. I was left wondering if his approach really only works in places with strongly seasonal rainfalls which have proven prone to desertification.

        • weka

          Just listened to it, and it didn’t strike me as a particularly cogent interview – too big a gap between his level of expertise and explaining for a lay person I think.

          About stock numbers – it’s relative right? Savory in that interview is talking about the rangelands in Africa, where people were shifted off the land, and then herd animals were managed artificially eg the elephant cull. What his system does is put the herds and carnivores back on the land in a way that mimics how those rangelands functioned sustainably for thousands of years.

          So, you can’t really compare that to NZ. For a start, we don’t have rangelands naturally, and we don’t have native herd animals (although I have heard the argument that moa filled this niche). Further, Savory isn’t saying ‘put more animals on the land’. He is saying to balance the numbers of animals with mob grazing and periodic resting of the land, in ways that mimic the natural shifting of herds. It’s not that NZ overstocks, it’s that our pasture management is completely unsustainable. Old school farming was degrading the land. Now industrial farming is just doing it much faster. Even if we went back to old school farming with lower stock rates, we would still have a problem.

          So, in NZ we are overstocked for the kinds of grazing we do, and we are creating deserts (eg Central Otago, the McKenzie country, and industrial dairying will make this so much worse because the soil is being degraded). There are places in NZ where you can’t farm anymore because the land is so fucked. We did that in a pretty short space of time.

          It’s a pity Savory didn’t explain the mechanism that he uses.

          The mechanism, as I understand it, is this. Let the pasture grow long. The perennial plants put down deep and complex root systems. Mob graze that pasture, so that it is taken down to short, and any left over carbonous material is trampled creating mulch. The mob grazing causes the grasses to shed roots, which feeds the microbes in the soil. The mulch protects the soil from dehydration and thus increases the numbers of microbes and worms etc. The increase in soil microbes leads to soil being built (it’s the microbial life that causes soil fertility). The increase in soil fertility leads to the grass growing back healthy and strong. After that has happened, it is mob grazed again and the so the cycle continues. This is how the rangelands in Africa, and the prairies in North America have functioned for millenia.

          That mechanism is also credited with sequestering carbon. Savory claims that if the arable land in production now was converted to his system we would sequester all the carbon we’ve emitted since the industrial revolution (something like that). Plowing and burning in particular prevent natural cycles of sequestration (and emit carbon). His system keeps the carbon in the soil (by building up carbon beneath the surface (hence no plowing).

          That’s a simplistic explanation of models of farming that use many approaches that have soil biology and biodiversity at base. Savory’s TED talk is a much better explanation of what he does, but there are others doing similar kinds of work – Joel Salatin, RegenAg, Holistic Managment etc.

      • prism 9.1.2

        Hi weka
        CV covers it well. I have to listen again and go to his link (Link and Learn!) because it overturns so much that I thought was carved in stone, so to speak.

  10. Monopoly Capitalism in predatory and scavenging mode.

    Trying to figure out what motivates the NACTs, its internal divisions, and ditto the Labour alternate party and its prospective bloc with Greens Mana etc., gets a bit confused when separated from the economic forces that are driving the political regimes in nation states today.

    The so-called financial crisis that set in in 2008 was but a symptom of a sick and dying capitalist system. Since the end of the post-war boom in the 1960 capitalism has had to switch from producing new value from labour which has proved unprofitable to scavenging its seed capital (plant, raw materials, and labour power) eating up our future so it can stagger on another year or decade.

    This is a more extreme development arising out of the state monopoly capitalism of the 20th century, itself a form of capitalism past its maturity, constantly going to war to redivide the world’s wealth into the hands of the victors. Already by WW1 global capitalism had accumulated so much wealth it couldnt accumulate more simply by reinvesting in the exploitation of living labour. It had to fight over the existing wealth of past labour. The last great re-division of the wealth in WW2 saw the A team beat the B team with the aid of the Soviet Union. Capitalism bounced back on the basis of the huge destruction of the war. But it left the Soviet Union as a threat hanging over capitalism’s future. The Soviet bloc represented a pool of wealth necessary for the survival of the old capitalist powers. The end of the post war boom was the warning light that the Western powers had no future unless they could defeat and divide up the Soviet Union and China.

    David Harvey calls this ‘accumulation by dispossession’ which is similar (but still very different) to what Marx called ‘primitive accumulation’ – the scavenging of non-capitalist peoples wealth to form the seed capital of a global capitalist economy. Think of the Potasi silver mine in Bolivia which provided at least half the silver to float the capitalist market at the expense of millions of miners lives. Today this level of theft means think of the restoration of capitalism in the Soviet Union and China as 1000 Potasi’s. Think 1,000,000 Rio Tinto’s sucking many Meridian’s.

    For capitalism to survive today it has to engage in the plundering of existing wealth (the accumulated labour) of past generations, state owned assets, and savings of the workers (pension funds, social wages etc). It is desperate to get hard assets to exchange for the multitrillions of fictitious capital that would otherwise prove worthless. But there is no way that new wealth or old wealth can be scavenged except by total dispossession of the masses and of the bankrupting of small states to

    We could call this capitalism’s ‘second childhood’ except its really capitalism’s dotage.

    As with ones’ old age, being old is not something that can be avoided or cashed in for eternal youth. Heart bypasses and transplants may prolong life but cannot prevent the onset of death. Capitalism is being kept alive by its parasitic scavenging of our future – the exhausting natural resources, the debt burden hanging around the necks of its workers and their children driving down their living standards and increasing their death rates, all of which amounts to the destruction of the forces of production upon which humanity depends for its survival.

    Those political parties that participate in this scavenging process both far right and centre left are part of the problem. For them the giant sucking sound of our futures going into the capitalist drain is either music or and irritating noise. The only political regime that can reverse and overcome this process of environmental collapse and human extinction is that which represents the masses whose lives are already being squandered. Think of Syria where 100,000 have died so that the US, Israel, Russia and China can negotiate some dirty deal to keep the lid on the Arab masses while they go about their global scavenging.

    So if anyone thinks they are going to get out of this shit without a fight to the death with the predatory, scavenging monopoly capitalism then they are deluded.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      Far easier to wage war against people who don’t recognise that they are in the fight of their lives.

      Even better if you can get them happily march themselves to the forced labour camps, grateful for the meagre rations you provide them each day on the road.

  11. The Auckland DAFT LUNATIC Plan…….

    I’d post this in Cameron Slater’s blog – but he’s banned me.


    Whaleoil believes in ‘freedom of expression’ – but not on HIS blog?

    PROOF that ‘activists get things done’ 🙂

    The Auckland DAFT LUNATIC Plan:

    Why does all this ‘growth’ have to come to Auckland?

    Why isn’t there a national ‘growth’ strategy?

    Who will benefit from all this Auckland ‘growth’ apart from property developers, speculators and overseas investors?

    How come Auckland Council and two major infrastructure providers, Auckland Transport and Watercare Services Ltd are not ‘on the same page’ regarding Auckland population growth projections?

    (Auckland Council is relying upon the Dept of Statistics ‘high’ population growth projections, while Auckland Transport and Watercare Services are relying on ‘medium’ population growth projections!)




    Petition of Penelope Mary Bright

    Requesting that Parliament declines to proceed with the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Bill until the lawfulness of the reliance of Auckland Council on the New Zealand Department of Statistics ”high” population growth projections, instead of their “medium” population growth projections for the Auckland Spatial Plan, has been properly and independently investigated, taking into consideration that both Auckland Transport and Watercare Services Ltd, have relied upon “medium” population growth projections for their infrastructural asset management plans.

    Petition number: 2011/64
    Presented by: Holly Walker
    Date presented: 30 May 2013
    Referred to: Social Services Committee

    ‘Smoking gun’ EVIDENCE proving the reliance of Auckland Council on the New Zealand Department of Statistics ”high”population growth projections, instead of their “medium” population growth projections for the Auckland Spatial Plan can be found HERE:



    PS: Have been trawling though Auckland Council ‘Future Vision’ and ‘Auckland Plan’ meeting minutes, trying to find out where EXACTLY Auckland Council elected representatives voted on accepting Chief Auckland Planner Dr Roger Blakeley’s (UNLAWFUL?) advice to use the Department of Statistics ‘high’ population growth projections, instead of their recommended ‘medium’ population growth projections for the Auckland (Spatial) Plan (which the Auckland Unitary Plan is supposed to implement). So far – no good…..

    Seriously – you couldn’t make this stuff up!

    Where on earth is the lawful DUE DILIGENCE?

    Not to mention basic commonsense?

    Penny Bright

    2013 Auckland Mayoral candidate

  12. NickS 12

    More bad news in Christchurch:

    Once again longterm threats are being ignored and insurance companies are trying to cut their responsibilities away vis fixing houses on flood prone land.

    As for what should be done – Christchurch used to have extensive wetlands, which are rather useful in blunting and reducing flood risks, along with cleaning polluted freshwater and providing habitat for native species. Provided crack-willows don’t invade of course.

    Taking this into account, frankly areas known to be at high risk of flooding (Avon river corridor basically), particularly around the lower end of the Avon should be made back into swamp lands, removing infrastructure and using causeways with numerous small bridges to lessen impediment. This would likely result in much of New Brighton Road area potentially having to be ripped out, as the road now lies at river surface level and protected by low dikes + the south bank and area around Porritt park.

    From memory (I live near these areas and have biked around them) Dallington from Mcbrartneys road-southward and Fleet Street-eastward are now at or less than 0.5m above river level. While in Burwood, the streets in behind Horseshoe Lake swamp have dropped significantly. The area defined by River Road though is still 0.5+ meters above the river bank, despite significant mass wastage caused by sand boils and slides. West of Banks Ave has dropped, perhaps enough to make it prone to flooding, but only seems to effect the land up to 106 Banks Ave from memory, with the land only dipping towards the creek, albeit with the land mostly classed red.

    Up towards Anzac Drive, the northen bank is at varying levels, with anything directly next to the river having dropped significantly, although much of the northern side of New Brighton road from the intersection of Lake Terrace Road is still 1m+ above the river.

    On the southern bank, everything north of Retreat Road is fucked, and the banks of the Avon are now at or below river level and the river, when only slightly swollen easily touches the road. Though more so on the northern eastern parts of Avonside Drive. Further east the bank doesn’t seem to have dropped much, although was naturally low and protected by a dike. Porrett Park has dropped significantly, as has much of the land inland for about 200m max from the line of the creek bordering the park and along Avonside drive to Hulverstone. But not to the extent of the northern bank.

    Anzac Drive north is now close to river level, with the swap once bordering both sides now encroaching on the verge. We project that the area east of the drainage creek flowing by Donnell Sports Park is also probably now at risk judging by the drop that’s occurred on Travis road. While anything bordering the Travis swamp is probably now at a higher flood risk.

    Not sure about the situation east of Anzac drive bridge, aside from the land reports, but I suspect the New Brighton spit is gone-burger, as is much of the land from the river out towards Parklands to varying degrees. Dependant on underlying strata.

    As population in this Avon corridor has dropped, as has the eastern suburbs they feed, removing the roads in this area wont alter traffic flows much, aside from rush hour. Main issues though are water and sewerage lines, of which there’s a significant high volume pipe underlying New Brighton (NB) Road from the Shirely/Marshland intersection, that will require diversion away from liquefaction prone river borders, if the road is removed, and potential swamp and/or park zones. NB road could be raised and turned into a causeway however, and with significant use of large pipe bridges or low bridging as to not impede water flow and movement by organisms etc, it should be possible to avoid the road getting flooded.

    Biggest expenses will probably relate to re-mediating the land and removing all asphalt (leaks toxic hydrocarbons) and certain trees, along with developing water ways and eradicating any willows + planting of suitable species. Properly done, it should end up turning into mixed Kaihikatea swap, and provide a major buffer against king tides and storm surges. Along with recreational walks, canoeing/boating, fishing and draw in native species, such as bellbirds and wood pigeons.

  13. NickS 13

    Holy shit:



    Looks like underlying political tensions in Istanbul over the Erdogan governments increasing bullshit has hit boiling point, and yet despite the police brutality (pepper spraying non-protesters, using water guns laced with irritants etc) the protesters are staying relatively peaceful.

    And guess what? Nothing about this in the local news, and only simmered into international news really today O_o

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      And the “Blockupy Movement” protesting against austerity and blocking all entrances to the main ECB building

      • NickS 13.1.1


        Sheesh, what the hell’s up with the German police? There’s no need to chase the protesters off, let alone a need for full riot gear. Just clear gaps when needed and keep calm and generally the protesters behave themselves.

    • joe90 13.2

      The North Carolina moral Monday campaign has slipped under the radar too.

      • NickS 13.2.1

        Cheers, haven’t been reading Little Green Footballs recently so missed that one completely. Hopefully they win some concessions and get the local democrats to think.

      • prism 13.2.2

        The thinking that is showing up in Lusk’s writings is no doubt sourced from the Republicans and their fellow travellers in the USA. Reading about Moral Monday reaction to the Republicans with apparently a big majority throwing out dearly held legislation and rights sounds like what we are enduring here.

        How could we tie the pollies with a limit on their ability to abolish and radically change laws that are not harming anybody? If it could be accepted that governments are caretakers principally not change agents, we wouldn’t have these virtual civil insurgents coming into power and claiming their right by conquest.

        • Colonial Viper

          yeah, a civics education programme, a neutral but critical press, and legislation recall referendums are the way to do it.

          A recall referendum called be initiated at the 60 day, 150,000 signature petition level.

          To strike down legislation it would re

          • prism

            What were you about to finish with? I guess it would require a large majority of the House presumably to strike down legislation Say 70%? Was that it?

            • Colonial Viper

              Ah right, it would go to a recall referendum vote which could be held as part of local body elections or general elections, and require a relatively low threshold to strike down legislation. Say 50% of the votes cast.

              I guess it would require a large majority of the House presumably to strike down legislation Say 70%? Was that it?

              If you think about it, if 70% of MPs were against a piece of legislation, they could strike it down via normal processes. I was thinking in particular about allowing the public to directly strike down legislation. (or perhaps even regulations)

  14. muzza 14


    The Kiwi soldiers were joined by the Canadian, US and British armies and the US Marine Corps to “enact a common conflict scenario of insurgents trying to overthrow a government”.

    Stupid little country!

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      Nice how the “exercise” is a “success”. Now to their small problems in Libya, Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, why is “success” so hard for them there?

      • muzza 14.1.1

        Indeed – A question might be, why was it held in NZ?

        Is there anything significant in that – Was there not talk about the building of some new *live* site being built for the SAS, south of Auckland – Keep an eye out for contracts or some follow up to this.


        Why do the SAS require a new site, if this so called drill was a , *success* , at the location it was held ?

        1000, is not a small drill, either, did they all leave the country, or have a number of the foreign troops, *stayed behind*

  15. Colonial Viper 15

    Kyrgyzstan townspeople riot against Canadian owned gold mine

    – Says the gold mine (10% of the country’s GDP) is not providing enough benefit to the people
    – Want the mine nationalised
    – Cut power to the mine
    – Clip ends by saying that events might scare off badly needed foreign investment…but what use is foreign investment if the locals only get crumbs from the dining table and Canadian shareholders all the rest?

  16. LynWiper 16

    Well well well!


    Swedish free school operator to close, leaving hundreds of pupils stranded

    JB Education schools are to be sold or closed after private equity group owner pulls plug, raising fears over UK policy

  17. BLiP 17

    Just catching up on my reading and stumbled across a great Jane Clifton rant . . .

    . . . Another recent one was Parliament’s putting special restrictions on protesters at sea, judging the rights of people to protest against whaling, mining and the like to be less important than the rights of whalers and miners. It’s true that these protesters are often nauseatingly self-aggrandising, and endanger their own and others’ safety, but our justice system would traditionally hold that sea-going hotheads have the same rights to get themselves prosecuted for trespass and sabotage as land-lubbing ones.

    The Government has also suspended a democratically elected local authority indefinitely and vowed to overrule others with reserve powers if it sees fit. And Parliament seems set to pass a private member’s bill, founded on Government support, that would ban people wearing gang patches in all public buildings, from benefit offices to schools. Although the latter will be a popular constitutional outrage – for a gang patch is telling us that the wearer has either gang-raped a young woman or brutalised a senior citizen in order to earn it – it is a slippery sliding scale on which to embark.

    Until his jailing, finance company boss Rod Petricevic’s highly visible Porsche was telling us that he had ripped off now-impoverished investors in order to earn it – in terms of offensiveness and intimidation, an emblem certainly on a continuum with a gang patch. And there’s a danger, once we let the state tell us we can’t wear something, that a future more conservative Parliament will add other things to the list, such as religious wear or immodest garb. This writer knows of at least one state agency that attempted to ban employees from wearing high-heeled shoes to work, on the grounds of safety. (Although I like to think most of us would cheerfully oppress the rights of those who show us their bum cracks via low-rider trousers.) . . .

    . . . saying it like it is.

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