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Open mike 01/11/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 1st, 2015 - 149 comments
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149 comments on “Open mike 01/11/2015”

  1. Gangnam Style 1

    “I helped the ABs win the world cup” – JK

  2. locus 2

    You beauties!

  3. b waghorn 3

    Just in case there was any doubt that the nats are dangerous morons ,they want to soften a law that saves kids lives.
    http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11538213

    • Gangnam Style 3.1

      “Some people don’t like the look of a fence but I can tell you there is nothing less aesthetically pleasing than your child lying face down in a pool,” – for sure!

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.2

      Morons would be harder to bribe successfully. They’d take the money then blab about it like Lusk.

      This isn’t stupidity it’s corruption: you can bet your eye teeth (or your drowned toddler) the National Party took money from property developers to do this.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.3

      It wants to save $17 million over 10 years by moving towards voluntary compliance, fewer inspections and removing the requirement to fence spas or hot tubs.

      $1.7 million per year? It’ll probably cost more than that just to put it through parliament never mind how much it’s going to cost the local councils in changes to procedures.

    • Treetop 3.4

      Wakey, wakey to the government, children can be so quick, turn your head and they are not even in the same room.

    • Cricklewood 3.5

      To be fair the way Auckland council interprets the current legislation is ridiculous and has had the effect of turning the law into an ass. As one example of many a client of mine had a small area of garden within their properly fenced pool enclosure. They were failed on the grounds that the lemon tree within said garden would encourage children to enter the pool area unsupervised. It would seem to me anyway that the pool itself would be of far greater attraction to unsupervised kids hence the pool fence. There are similar stories all over Auckland of over zealous interpretation in regards to pool fencing an as we all know it the Nats are predisposed to fixing problems with regulation by removing them..

  4. North 4

    Wow !

    http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11538213

    Nick Smith’s [read “The Ponce-Key’s”] motivation – “reducing the compliance burden imposed on pool owners and territorial authorities in relation to residential pools while……” [contradiction in terms surely ?] “maintaining child safety”.

    “It wants to save $17 million over 10 years by moving towards voluntary compliance, fewer inspections and removing the requirement to fence spas or hot tubs.”

    Hmmm…….$26 million up in smoke in one year, over a flag. Not a child life at stake.

    The imperative……stroking the ego of the simpering clown E! Channel John. Presently in London ‘colonising’ the ABs [to whom well done btw].

    It beggars belief !

    • miravox 4.1

      This doesn’t even deserve the politeness of a debate. These people are stupid.

      • weka 4.1.1

        +1 except I don’t think they’re stupid, they’re venal (pretty sure that it’s worth a few kids lives to save all that dosh).

        • miravox 4.1.1.1

          Venal and stupid works for me. Though it costs a fair bit of taxpayer $$$ to pay for lifelong care of oxygen-deprived, nearly-drowned kids. Not to mention the cost of 70-odd years of lost productivity of two-year-olds who die this way.

          Maybe they should think about charging that to the pool owners if they’re going to get rid of the relatively low costs of preventative measures.

          • weka 4.1.1.1.1

            Yes, you are completely right, venal and stupid.

            I’m sure someone has already thought up your last sentence as strategy, they just haven’t figured out yet how to do that in a way that is acceptable.

          • RedBaronCV 4.1.1.1.2

            If you’re rich enough to fund a swimming pool the fees should be a breeze.

            • miravox 4.1.1.1.2.1

              Exactly.

              But it’s not the fees, it’s the fences spoiling the aesthetics that the owners complain about (in my experience).

          • alwyn 4.1.1.1.3

            That is a totally stupid calculation. Why should you count the cost of this hypothetical 70 years of production of those who were drowned and ignore the cost they might incur in living, and consuming, during those 70 years?
            The cost of these drownings is, in reality, the sadness caused to their families.

            When we look at the cabinet papers we see that the changes are expected to save about 6 lives per decade.
            In the cabinet papers we see, from
            mbie.govt.nz/info-services/building-construction/current-work/fencing-of-swimming-pools
            that
            “The changes are estimated to reduce the risk of young children drowning in home pools by six drownings every 10 years.”
            Think about the sort of silly calculations that could be thrown back at you?
            If we were to accept your logic we would have to accept an equally illogical claim that an abortion carried out in New Zealand had a cost equal to the possible 70 odd years productivity for each one performed wouldn’t we?
            There are about 15,000/year or about 25,000 times the number of drowned children. Are you really saying that we lose an enormous amount of production from performing an abortion and that that loss is real?
            This calculation is, of course, no more sensible than your own. They are both completely meaningless.

            ps. I am not attempting to bring the debate over the rights and wrongs of the legislation, or of abortion rights into this. I approve of the legislation and I approve of the right to choose. I am only commenting on the foolishness of this evaluation of the supposed costs of a death

            • North 4.1.1.1.3.1

              “When we look at the cabinet papers we see that the changes are expected to save about 6 lives per decade.”

              Oh really ? So less enforcement, because however you spin it that’s what it is, is going to maintain present statistics, rather than worsen ? What you quote from the cabinet papers does not address that. Neither do you Alwyn, while implying that this is some sort of enhancement.

              Disingenuous ? No. Plain dishonest. Masking that “When it comes to the tension between infant lives and choice there has to be an appropriate balance, and the appropriate balance is skewed presently. We’ll rectify that with less enforcement.” Which of course makes it likely that more infant lives will be lost than were lost previously.

              “Three cheers for restored balance and choice !” I say. Being a right wing nutter offended by infants making the cut for care and safety.

              • alwyn

                You didn’t bother to read everything I wrote did you?
                Alternatively you are too stupid to understand it.
                As I said at the end I am in favour of this pool fencing.
                What I do object to is fallacious comments implying that we are supposed to count as a cost what the children who drowned might have produced in their lifetime and ignore what they might have consumed. As I said that is no different from someone claiming that their are enormous losses from an abortion. They are equally fallacious calculations.
                Now try reading it again, completely and slowly.

                • alwyn

                  Oh Damn.
                  I should have been more careful myself when proofreading the original.
                  It was meant to say in the last para “I approve of the EXISTING legislation” not “I approve of the legislation”.
                  I stand by my comments on the analysis of costs though.

                  • North

                    Yeah beautiful Alwyn…..such perfunctory shit…..”I approve…..” Only to protect yourself in the ensuing discussion. Very dishonest. You really mean – “Whatever The Ponce Key does……I’ll come out swinging”.

                    Don’t pull your pompous “you’re so stupid” on me, idiot. I’m far too long in the tooth, and (gratuitous and entirely Grace of God) I’ve got far too many brains to be distracted by that poop. You wanna hide your fooulness, you wanna tangle words-wise well do it…..but do it better.

                    Hey, re your perceived need to ‘clarify’ (I got your perfunctory point in the first place) ……explaining is losing, dog.

                    Who asked for your rationalisations re ‘cost’ anyway ? Especially since it’s weighing infants like economic units with the meagrest acknowledgment of the pain of the tragic loss of a child as “sadness”, merely. Soooo Steven Joyce/Ponce Key and the rest of those bludgers.

                    Deaths which otherwise would not occur, will occur. You confirm yourself a shithead Big A !

                    • alwyn

                      I found it hard to understand how you could possibly have, rationally, come to your statements on my comment.
                      Giving you the benefit of the doubt I assumed that you might have taken my statement of approving of the legislation as approving of proposed changes to the existing legislation rather than to the existing legislation.
                      However you say that you did understand what I meant and I now see that you were merely expressing fantasies that exist only deep in the recesses of your mind and attributing words, and opinions, to me that I don’t hold and have never expressed.
                      You are more to be pitied than blamed I suppose.

                • locus

                  You didn’t bother to read everything I wrote did you?
                  Alternatively you are too stupid to understand it

                  Really alwyn? This comment sums up everything you are and how you think about people…..

                  Your nastiness is further demonstrated by introducing an emotive unrelated topic into the thread in order to denigrate

                  The line of discussion here is about how to challenge the ‘cost savings’ argument that the prime minister and joyce like to use, when it’s applied to justify reducing safeguards that prevent toddlers from drowning.

                  imo it’s both an ethical and leadership failing to present cost savings arguments on this topic, and it is clear that pool, pond and spa fencing has proven to be a simple practical and effective life-saving measure.

            • maui 4.1.1.1.3.2

              This is just a plain callous attitude, the proposed law almost doubles the time between pool safety inspections and takes any fence protection away from spa pools. And you think this is going to make things safer??

            • miravox 4.1.1.1.3.3

              Alwyn arguing against cost-benefits? I’m shaking my head in wonder.

              It’s not me who says a cost-benefit calculations is important. I’m being sarcastic. This government doesn’t do anything with social benefit without figuring how it will cost less and can be sold as if they’re doing something, or conversely to support dodgy plans they want (roads of national importance comes to mind).

              But anyway, Kids health Australia provides an examplefor swimming pool fencing [pdf] with these life-long calculations that show preventative measures are life-saving as well as cost-effective measures.

              Anyway (no2) the bill is not aimed at preventing drownings – the current law does that. It’s aimed at

              The amendment – put forward by Minister for Building and Housing Nick Smith – is aimed at “reducing the compliance burden imposed on pool owners and territorial authorities in relation to residential pools while maintaining child safety”.

    • Treetop 4.2

      Bluntly put, no one wants the cost of a coroners inquiry.

  5. Molly 5

    Looking at the pathetic – (30% reduction on 2005 levels using a carbon tax if everyone else does a little something… )- NZ Intended Nationally Determined Contribution for the Paris climate change talks, and noticed that every page has a silver fern insignia at the bottom.

    Did I miss when this became an official insignia for the NZ Government?

  6. amirite 6

    Stuart Nash’s rant in The Daily Blog is an example of all that is wrong with the Labour Party. They seem to think that the National_Lite Labour is the way to win in 2017.

    • BM 6.1

      Of course it is, you numpty.

      Why do you think National was labour lite for quite a few years, people don’t like radical change.

      • weka 6.1.1

        If they don’t want radical change why do some of them (not that many in teh end) keep voting National? This government is as radical as 1980s Labour.

        • BM 6.1.1.1

          Because people don’t consider them radical.

          Why, because the tack right has taken quite a long time, people consider what national is doing quite normal, that’s the key to get lasting change.

          Key and National understand the voter, the left does not.

          • locus 6.1.1.1.1

            it’s only a matter of time before the voter realises its time to get the pigs out of the beehive

          • b waghorn 6.1.1.1.2

            Boiling the frog slowly is the national way.

          • amirite 6.1.1.1.3

            If National’s taking basic workers rights away isn’t radical, what is? On the surface they are keeping a semblance of some basic welfare & social state while in the background dismantling all of it – health, corrections, education, benefits.
            And those dimwits who think they’re better off with National, just think again. You’re just one serious accident or one serious disease away from a life in poverty.

    • savenz 6.2

      It’s worth reading to get an insight into their minds – Unbelievable!

      All I can think of is IS Nash a National plant in Labour?

      Because there is not way they can win the election with that arrogant entitled attitude.

      And what do they have to be arrogant about?

      • weka 6.2.1

        He’s not a National plant, he’s a Pagani party plant. Which is worse.

        • savenz 6.2.1.1

          Actually he can’t be a plant because he won Napier by accident when the right vote was split with McVicar coming in.

          He accidentally won his electorate, but that does not stop his unbelievable arrogance. Because winning is everything in his view.

          And instead of blaming the Herald and MSM for being a problem for Labour – he blames the Standard. HMMM?

          Not one sentence about policy. It all about him, ME< ME< ME<

          And blaming others for Labour's loss and have you heard about how great he is because he won?

          Lucky I was not eating breakfast when I read it.

      • b waghorn 6.2.2

        Collins named him as a future leader of labour the other day.(forgotten where sorry)

        • whateva next? 6.2.2.1

          No surprises there, but whilst he is a Labour MP, why play into Collin’s hand by airing dirty laundry and giving oxygen to this stuff? It is the party that decides, not Colins/Lusk/Crosby Textor

      • Hami Shearlie 6.2.3

        He uses the magic “Nash” name to further himself – and he’s not even blood-related!

    • weka 6.3

      I tried reading it but couldn’t get past the first few paragraphs. It’s all rhetoric and spin and designed to manipulate towards the centre. Which is ironic given that TDB is running a special project on democracy and Nash is one of the guest writers.

    • Wainwright 6.4

      If he has a problem with undisciplined MPs making the Party look bad in public he should look in a mirror.

  7. maui 7

    Paul Craig Roberts says the US will be a third world country within a decade:

    The collapse of the Soviet Union was the worst thing that ever happened to the United States. The two main consequences of the Soviet collapse have been devastating. One consequence was the rise of the neoconservative hubris of US world hegemony, which has resulted in 14 years of wars that have cost $6 trillion. The other consequence was a change of mind in socialist India and communist China, large countries that responded to “the end of history” by opening their vast under-utilized labor forces to Western capital, which resulted in the American economic decline that this article describes, leaving a struggling economy to bear the enormous war debt.

    It is a reasonable conclusion that a social-political-economic system so incompetently run already is a Third World country.

    http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2015/10/29/us-on-road-to-third-world-paul-craig-roberts/

    • savenz 7.1

      I have no problem with the US, but they need to reign back their own trojans of Greed that are destroying their own country.

      Provoking a world war is not the answer to improve American lives.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.1.1

        Provoking a world war is not the answer to improve American lives.

        But it does boost profits for the bankers who will be making loans to both sides.

    • nadis 7.2

      Parts of the US are a third world country now. But you should read some of Paul Craig Roberts earlier predictions before you put any weight on his current ones.

  8. sabine 8

    Reposting here as I went to the wrong Open Mike thread,

    world war 3 anyone?

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/russian-plane-carrying-224-people-crashes-in-egypt_5634ab34e4b00aa54a4e657b

    “Islamic State, in a statement on Twitter, said it had brought down the aircraft. “You who kill will be killed.”

    Russia, an ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, launched air raids against opposition groups in Syria including Islamic State on Sept. 30.

    Security sources said they had no indication the Airbus had been shot down or blown up. But in an illustration of sensitivity of the crash, Egypt invited Russian authorities to take part in the investigation.

    Sinai is the scene of an insurgency by militants close to Islamic State, who have killed hundreds of Egyptian soldiers and police and have also attacked Western targets in recent months. Much of the Sinai is a restricted military zone.

    Islamist fighters in Sinai are not believed to have missiles capable of hitting a plane at 30,000 feet. Islamic State websites have in the past claimed responsibility for actions that have not been conclusively attributed to them. “

    • Graeme 8.1

      I think we’ll find this was a rather elderly and well used aeroplane, operating to it’s limits, that fell out of the sky all by it’s self. The actual cause will be confirmed in a few days once the flight recorders have been analysed.

      • Colonial Viper 8.1.1

        A 1997 or 1998 manufacture A321. Not that old on an industry basis, although it had certainly done a fairly large number of hours/flights.

        • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1.1

          Age is a factor but it really comes down to maintenance and replacement of worn parts. We’ve had our airforce Orions since 1966 and they’re still flying. The last upgrade was, IIRC, the last that they can go through though as the airframes are worn to the point that another upgrade would, essentially, be replacing the entire aircraft anyway.

    • nadis 8.2

      ” But in an illustration of sensitivity of the crash, Egypt invited Russian authorities to take part in the investigation.”

      Not unusual. In fact normal. It was a Russian flagged carrier with a large number of Russian citizens on board. Under ICAO rules, Egypt runs the investigation and other involved countries assist.

      Would be very surprised if IS in Egypt downed it with a missile. Egyptian authorities have already discounted the claim saying they dont have the technology. A bomb on board though is possible…… Could make sense given the entree of Russia into Syria.

  9. AsleepWhileWalking 9

    Eeek. Diagnosing metal illness via Google etc…

    Thomas Insel, who has been director of the National Institute of Mental Health for 13 years, is leaving at the end of the month to join Google. A major force behind the Obama administration’s BRAIN Initiative, he stirred major controversy by pressing for an overhaul in the way mental illness is diagnosed. At Google, he’ll be exploring how the company’s technological expertise can be applied to mental-health issues.

    Uh huh.

    Think about what he’s saying for a minute here folks:

    One of the possibilities here is, by using the technologies we already have, technologies that are linked to a cellphone, technologies that are linked to the Internet, we may be able to get much more information about behavior than what we’ve been able to use in making a diagnosis.

    http://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=230850

    • Draco T Bastard 9.1

      It would have to be opt-in but other than that I don’t have a problem with the idea. Simple fact of the matter is that computers are going to be used in diagnosis and they’re going to make them far more accurate.

      Of course, what he’s talking about is technologies already there and in use. As I keep telling people when they get upset about the government keeping data – the private sector already is and they can’t be held to account.

      It shouldn’t be OMG, this is a bad idea and it needs to be stopped! It should be Ok, this is a good idea but it’s obviously going to need some tight regulation and oversight.

      It’s regulation like that that we’re missing partially because we’ve been in this deregulation mode for the last few decades and also because the technology is out pacing the laws. Which is why I like the idea of a law that simply says Nothing shall be brought to market until it has been properly regulated.

      • Graeme 9.1.1

        I’m with you on this Draco. Google’s technologies have the potential to give a tool that can go back through a person’s internet usage habits and allow professionals to deduce what was going on with their state of mind. This could allow an objective assessment of the progression of an illness in a “normal” (as in away from a clinical situation) environment. Hopefully this would lead to considerably faster and more accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment of the the afflicted.

        With opt in and regulation, I think most unwell people would love to be able to op out of their illness, or at least the unpleasant sides of it…. The existing tools that clinicians use, DSM, Mental Health Act, and treatments are already highly regulated and this would be the same.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1.1.1

          …this would be the same.

          Just so long as you aren’t using the same definition of “would” as Max Bradford, Roger Douglas et al that sounds fine.

          • Graeme 9.1.1.1.1

            Clinicians already have extensive powers under the MHA that are wielded in a very conservative and respectful manner. Try getting someone who unwell committed under the Act, it’s done VERY carefully.

            I’ve supported my partner through 3 episodes of bipolar, 2 requiring hospitalisation, and the subjective, and often intuitive, nature of the diagnostic process is difficult for all concerned, especially the patient.

            I just hope that Google’s “Do No Evil” ethos prevails and the resulting tools, if any develop, (it could be a dead end, they’ve had a few noble efforts) are available to clinicians at no cost.

      • AsleepWhileWalking 9.1.2

        I object to any additional government regulation. It’s just another way to limit freedom. I think the most psychologically unbalanced among us (or just privacy weary) will simply switch to the dark net.

        The potential is there to target medication around political leanings or questioning a stated “fact” such as 9/11.

        • Draco T Bastard 9.1.2.1

          I object to any additional government regulation.

          Really? Just think of what the private corporations would be doing without government regulations and oversight. The environment would be trashed, they’d be spying on you 24/7 and that data that they share wouldn’t be anonymised at all.

          It’s just another way to limit freedom

          Within context, government regulations increase freedom.

          I think the most psychologically unbalanced among us (or just privacy weary) will simply switch to the dark net.

          There was a really good article not long ago about what the dark actually is and it’s obviously not what you think it is.

          The potential is there to target medication around political leanings or questioning a stated “fact” such as 9/11.

          Not really.

    • Incognito 9.2

      Could this be chicken & egg stuff? I mean, is certain behaviour (on the internet) possibly symptomatic of mental illness or is certain behaviour inducing or at least aggravating mental illness?

      Cause & effect, action & reaction, it often depends on your perspective, doesn’t it?

    • Treetop 9.3

      I heard something last week about an ap being developed to read facial moods, (think 8 – 10). Witch doctoring in the 21st century.

  10. sabine 10

    China, the world, artificial islands and stuff …….

    • DH 10.1

      It’s hard to figure out what China is up to there. Their territorial claims are quite outrageous and surely they can see that the world at large won’t accept them.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        they reclaimed land, are building extensive military facilities and are seeking a 12 mile territorial limit. How is that “outrageous”? Remember, the US has ringed China with dozens of military bases. Is that not “outrageous”?

        “the world at large”…I think you mean the 1/5 of the world allied to USA and the west.

        • DH 10.1.1.1

          “How is that “outrageous”?”

          Have you been living in a cave? Just take a look at the map showing Chinas territorial claims. They’re using the islands to claim the entire South China Sea as Chinese territory, with borders that infringe on every single one of its neighbors’ territorial rights.

          Take your anti-US blinkers off and look at it from the perspective of the other countries who also have rights there. China is the neighborhood bully here.

          • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1.1

            huh? The South China Sea is huge. China’s claims represent a tiny surface area of the sea.

            And why should the USA be projecting its military might thousands of miles away from its own shores?

            Like I said, China is returning to its normal place as regional leader and power centre in east Asia.

            • RedLogix 10.1.1.1.1.1

              In other words – China as the regional bully. Good oh.

              • greywarshark

                What’s red and logical about that remark? Between big countries there are often power plays. We just have to hope that one power doesn’t want to own the whole world.

                • RedLogix

                  What is logical about a world in which we tolerate this threat of ‘power plays’?

                  Especially when the kiddies are armed with nuclear weapons?

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    +1

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Especially when the kiddies are armed with nuclear weapons?

                    Worth remembering that only one nation in the world has used nuclear weapons on people and the deep state of that particular nation is very influenced by highly aggressive ‘take down 7 countries in 5 years’ neocons .

                    • RedLogix

                      So all the other nuclear weapons built by other countries are just cardboard cutouts that no-one ever intends using?

                      Well that’s a relief to know. Why didn’t someone say this decades ago?

                      Of course since WW2 no nation has used them, nor is it credible to suggest any nation really intends or plans on a first-strike option.

                      But as McFlock pointed out elsewhere today – the real risk is the unintended escalation – the scenario where one miscalculation tips into another and before you know it there are flaming naval wrecks dotting the South China Sea and Weapons Officers in deeply submerged subs – decrypting orders with a cold sense of dread.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      So all the other nuclear weapons built by other countries are just cardboard cutouts that no-one ever intends using?

                      I’ll add here that China has a tiny nuclear arsenal comprising of relatively few warheads and only a few dozen ICBMs, compared to Russia or the USA.

                      They figured out a long time ago that it was largely a waste of money and resources.

                    • RedLogix

                      Ploughshares estimate China has about 250 warheads, although this doesn’t take into account size and delivery type. Just enough to be a significant deterrent and about the same as the UK.

                      Besides the 7,000 odd warheads possessed each by the US and Russia are more of legacy from the Cold War, rather than reflecting any useful strategic purpose. Any actual nuclear exchange would be over long before they got through a fraction of that number.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Indeed.

                      And you can see today that both China and Russia have chosen strategies of pursuing extremely pragmatic cost-effective technologies and approaches to counter the US’s utterly overwhelming military spending.

            • Psycho Milt 10.1.1.1.1.2

              Like I said, China is returning to its normal place as regional leader and power centre in east Asia.

              Awesome. Maybe they could call it the “Greater East Asian Co-prosperity Sphere.”

            • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1.1.1.3

              China’s claims represent a tiny surface area of the sea.

              No they don’t. Their aim is quite clear – they’re going to claim the entire South China Sea. Same as we should be claiming the entire area between NZ and the Kermadecs, the Chathams and all land out to the Continental Shelf as territory .

              Looking at the map, the Spratly’s should belong to Indonesia.

              And why should the USA be projecting its military might thousands of miles away from its own shores?

              It shouldn’t and it should have military bases outside of it’s own territory. This would apply to all nations.

              Like I said, China is returning to its normal place as regional leader and power centre in east Asia.

              That would only be true if you consider such things as normal. I don’t. I consider them as trappings of imperialism and I’m thoroughly against that no matter who does it.

              • RedLogix

                As I mentioned a while back, we’ve made a friend (sort of adopted as it were) a young Chinese man whose is studying locally to be a commercial pilot.

                Some time back when this first arose my partner mentioned it to him and he was pretty nonchalant about it. Then she got up a map and pointed out where the claim actually was.

                Suddenly he was quite confused, embarrassed and he admitted it made no sense. Of course we didn’t press the point, because it certainly wasn’t our intention to make him feel wrong about it.

                What concerns me about this is how little wriggle room there is. One side or another is going to have to back down – and either way it will come with big consequences.

                • DH

                  “What concerns me about this is how little wriggle room there is.’

                  Yeah that’s what worries me too. China seem to have talked this up so much they don’t have many avenues of backing down. That leaves the US to back down and I can’t see them doing that either.

                  I do wonder just how many people know how much territory China is claiming, this isn’t about a few islands. Those unfamiliar look at the map in this BBC report, the red dotted line is China’s claimed territorial border;

                  http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-pacific-13748349

                  It is quite outrageous, leaves almost nothing to the other countries.

              • greywarshark

                Is this right – ‘should have ‘ be another shouldn’t?

                ‘It shouldn’t and it should have military bases outside of it’s own territory. This would apply to all nations.”

            • nadis 10.1.1.1.1.4

              hah – check out CV’s definition of “tiny”

              http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/oct/28/china-not-frightened-fight-war-south-china-sea-uss-lassen

              And it’s well documented that the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, Brunei and Indonesia have been asking the US to perform just this type of freedom of transit operation for several years. The obstacle had been the US state department and Pres Obama, but they finally lost patience with China at the recent state visit when Pres Xi essentially told the US that the ASEAN nations would have to live with the reality of Chinese “ownership” of the South China Sea.

              • Colonial Viper

                The obstacle had been the US state department and Pres Obama, but they finally lost patience with China at the recent state visit

                LOL

                Western imperialism and self assured superiority at its best.

                The US was making public threatening noises about sanctioning China on the eve of Xi Jin Ping’s state visit.

                That rudeness and lack of civility will have been noted in Beijing.

                Compare the UK’s approach – literally rolling out the royal red carpet.

                • nadis

                  China and the US have a symbiotic relationship. They need each other economically.

                  I can’t see China over-escalating this, the area they claim doesn’t actually solve their import/export maritime route issues, and until about 2060 when China has th. Look at a map. Everything still has to come via choke points controlled by Malaysia/Indonesia/Singapore (Straits of Malacca is the main route) and then every other maritime route to China sits between two of Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea. Its WW2 Japanese strategy revisited except China cant invade those countries..

                  RE the South China Sea – do you think China’s claim is legitimate? Do you still think their claim of 80% of the sea is a “tiny” part of the sea?

        • Psycho Milt 10.1.1.2

          they reclaimed land, are building extensive military facilities and are seeking a 12 mile territorial limit. How is that “outrageous”?

          Because international law says you don’t get to build artificial islands in international waters and declare a 12-mile territorial limit around them. That’s why it’s “outrageous,” and also why they Yanks are highlighting the breach by sailing warships within 12 miles of the artificial islands.

        • McFlock 10.1.1.3

          they reclaimed land, are building extensive military facilities and are seeking a 12 mile territorial limit. How is that “outrageous”?

          lol
          according to Nadis “The UN Convention on the Law of the Sea explicitly does not allow states to base a claim for a maritime zone based on reclaimed land.”

          Specifically, Article 60:

          7. Artificial islands, installations and structures and the safety zones around them may not be established where interference may be caused to the use of recognized sea lanes essential to international navigation.

          8. Artificial islands, installations and structures do not possess the status of islands. They have no territorial sea of their own, and their presence does not affect the delimitation of the territorial sea, the exclusive economic zone or the continental shelf.

          Personally, given China’s track record on environmental protection vs strategic interests, I’m concerned as to how badly these artificial islets on previously abundant shoals will further fuck the SCS fisheries.

      • Chooky 10.1.2

        “Territorial disputes in the South China Sea involve both island and maritime claims among several sovereign states within the region, namely Brunei, the People’s Republic of China, the Republic of China (Taiwan), Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam. There are disputes concerning both the Spratly and the Paracel islands, as well as maritime boundaries in the Gulf of Tonkin and elsewhere. There is a further dispute in the waters near the Indonesian Natuna Islands.[1] The interests of different nations include acquiring fishing areas around the two archipelagos; the potential exploitation of suspected crude oil and natural gas under the waters of various parts of the South China Sea; and the strategic control of important shipping lanes. Shangri-La Dialogue serves as the “Track One” exchange forum on the security issues surrounding Asia-Pacific region including Territorial disputes in the South China Sea.[2] Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia Pacific is the “Track Two” dialogue on security issues of Asia-Pacific.[3][4]”

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Territorial_disputes_in_the_South_China_Sea

        ‘How Should Vietnam Respond to China’s South China Sea Oil Rig Return? -A look at Beijing’s motivations and Hanoi’s options’.

        http://thediplomat.com/2015/07/how-should-vietnam-respond-to-chinas-south-china-sea-oil-rig-return/

        ‘Everything you need to know about the South China Sea conflict – in under five minutes’

        http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2015/06/09/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-south-china-sea-conflict-in-under-five-minutes/

        ‘Whatever Is Behind China’s Spratly Island Showdown, It Isn’t Drilling For Oil’

        http://www.forbes.com/sites/christopherhelman/2015/05/27/war-with-china-these-tiny-islands-could-trigger-it/

    • Rosemary McDonald 10.2

      The term ‘escalating’ comes to mind.

      Is is time to build up our Apocalypse supplies and take to the bunkers?

      • DH 10.2.1

        “The term ‘escalating’ comes to mind.”

        It does doesn’t it. China doesn’t appear willing to budge an inch and it can only go one way if they persist with that stance.

        I’m left with the impression China wants a war with the US.

        • Colonial Viper 10.2.1.1

          Bullshit. China is simply returning to the historical norm of being the lead power in eastern Asia.

          I’m left with the impression the USA thinks it can be policeman thousands of miles away from its own territory in China’s backyard.

          • Rosemary McDonald 10.2.1.1.1

            I’m left with the impression that ALL of those states who would presume superiority are just spoiling for a showdown.

            This is the posturing, sabre rattling, chest thumping bullshit that mankind should have moved on from by now.

            You know….evolved.

            U.S., Russia, China….enemies of us all.

            • Colonial Viper 10.2.1.1.1.1

              sorry, you’re looking at these great powers as if they all have the same cultural and societal values. They don’t.

              Secondly, NZ as a small Pacific country needs to have extensive dealings with the powers of this region. And we need to be way smarter about it.

              • Sabine

                extensive dealings or be submissive? What shall it be? Dealings or submit?

                Resistance is futile?
                Shall we all embrace our new future chinese overlords? And if we don’t like it what then?

                How would you like lil ole NZ to behave in its extensive dealings?

                Really, how do you think that will go ahead?

                • Colonial Viper

                  How it will go will depend on the skill, vision and competence of the NZ ruling class.

              • weka

                “Secondly, NZ as a small Pacific country needs to have extensive dealings with the powers of this region. And we need to be way smarter about it.”

                You said this the other day CV. I’d be interested to hear more of your thoughts on this, the being smarter about it stuff.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Friendly, largely neutral, mostly harmless with solid dependable values; willing to honestly trade and cut deals which advantage Kiwis but are also win-win to all parties.

                  • Bill

                    Kinda emulate India’s position during the cold war you mean? Could work. Unfortunately pollies tend to be kind of thick and to view the world in very black and white terms.

                    Needs to choose sides thems duz. 😉

                  • sabine

                    you forgot to add the TUI at the end of that.

          • DH 10.2.1.1.2

            “I’m left with the impression the USA thinks it can be policeman thousands of miles away from its own territory in China’s backyard.”

            Yeah, well you and your ilk are part of the problem aren’t you? You cheer on what will only be another bullying and tyrannical replacement for the US when what the world needs is an end to these ‘lead powers’.

            • One Two 10.2.1.1.2.1

              Idealists tend to lack objectivity, logic and critical thinking skills

              Simpletons are similar

              • RedLogix

                So when China – as the regional ‘lead power’ decides it would like a nice little naval base in the South Pacific, I guess we just have to give away being ‘idealistic’ about these things.

              • RedLogix

                So when China – as the regional ‘lead power’ decides it would like a nice little naval base in the South Pacific, I guess we just have to give away being ‘idealistic’ about these things.

                • One Two

                  The comment was an interpretation of post 10.2.1.1.2 by DH

                  Given the number of US military bases around the world including the South Pacific, I can run the same interpretation over your response

                  • DH

                    “The comment was an interpretation of post 10.2.1.1.2 by DH”

                    It also looks to be the interpretation of a simpleton who can’t follow a thread. CV above clearly seemed to approve of China becoming a new ‘lead power’ and since he’s been a vociferous critic of the USA I was merely pointing out his crass hypocrisy in supporting behaviour no different to that which he so frequently condemns.

                    • One Two

                      “I’m left with the impression that China wants a war with the US”

                      Quite the simpletons conclusion!

                      If I had comment for CV I would have addressed him directly.

                      @ Redlogix – re nuclear weapons. Either that or the continued tortuous death of the planets inhabitants

                    • DH

                      “I’m left with the impression that China wants a war with the US”

                      “Quite the simpletons conclusion!”

                      If you’d really wanted to join the conversation you’d have asked why I gained that impression. A quick brief of the dictionary should tell you an impression is not a conclusion, impression being a tad more ethereal.

                      Just move on, you’re not being clever and you’re not impressing anyone with your snide remarks.

                    • One Two

                      “China doesn’t appear willing to budge an inch and it can only go one way if they persist with that stance.”

                      No need to ask. My interpretation (check your dictionary) was based on your statements

                      That you then attack CV “and his ilk” left you little wiggle room, so you chose projection instead

                      Move on

                  • RedLogix

                    So now what? The US military hegemony is replaced by a Chinese one and we are all supposed to be happy about it?

                    And say what you like about the US (and it has all been said before) – China remains a nasty totalitarian state with an appalling human rights record.

                    If I had to pick between two evils I know which one I prefer. But actually the ‘idealist’ in me would prefer not.

                    I’ve repeatedly argued that the era of the ‘super power’ or ‘regional lead power’ is over and that the need for an alternative model based on a federal global governance is now inevitable.

                    If nothing else several tens of thousands of nuclear weapons will eventually prove me right.

                    • Chooky

                      +100 RedLogix

                    • Colonial Viper

                      If I had to pick between two evils I know which one I prefer. But actually the ‘idealist’ in me would prefer not.

                      If you were poor, coloured, Muslim and trying to survive in what is left of Iraq, Syria, Libya or Afghanistan would you pick the same?

                    • RedLogix

                      I understand that the US has been the imperial hegemony since WW2 – they’ve got record.

                      China in the meantime is clearly the new kid on the block aspiring to replace them. Not so much record yet.

                      If you want to argue that China will make a far better, kinder and nicer empire than the US – go right ahead. But in that case – and I feel a little mean for saying this – how come so many Chinese with the wealth and opportunity to do so are so very keen to get out of China if they possibly can?

                    • If you were poor, coloured, Muslim and trying to survive in what is left of Iraq, Syria, Libya or Afghanistan would you pick the same?

                      If I was poor, coloured and Muslim in Iraq, Syria or Afghanistan, my bigger concern would be the other ethnic groups in the country, and the immediate neighbours (Iran, Pakistan etc), not what the US does. That aside, it’s pointless to request preference between the known activities of a current hegemon and the potential activities of a hegemon not currently active in your region. What do you base it on? Better the devil you don’t know?

                    • joe90

                      Not so much record yet.

                      Yeah nah.

                      http://condensedchina.com/

                    • RedLogix

                      @joe

                      Kapersky doesn’t like that linky. But on reflection I can well imagine some of what it might refer to.

                      And then there is this allegation:

                      http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO1401/S00014/forced-organ-harvesting-from-living-falun-gong-practitioners.htm

                      I don’t really know what to make of it – but a bit of a search I did a while back on it seemed to find a fair number of credible links backing it up.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      If you want to argue that China will make a far better, kinder and nicer empire than the US – go right ahead. But in that case – and I feel a little mean for saying this – how come so many Chinese with the wealth and opportunity to do so are so very keen to get out of China if they possibly can?

                      The moneyed elite rule the USA: they make the rules and the rules don’t apply to them.

                      In China and Russia, the moneyed elite are still heavily subject to the will and the willfulness of the state apparatus.

                      Look at how Putin brought the Russian billionaire oligarchs to heel in the 2000s. And the many wealthy Chinese elite who have been imprisoned – or executed – in the last few years.

                      Compare that to how many Wall St CEOs have been put behind bars for defrauding the 99%. (none)

                    • joe90

                      @ RL

                      It’s actually a potted history of China – Xia: c. 2200 – c. 1750 BC through to present day but I do take your point about the excesses of the regime.

                      But having said that my sister in law is mainland born to a father, dad returned to his ancestral village to wed, whose people arrived in Otago mid nineteenth century. And my SIL makes no bones about the fact that despite the current excesses post 1949 was the first time ever the ordinary people in China have been safe from the horrors of their rulers.

                      In fact her mothers people fled from a ruler much like this bloke:

                      (cited from the link above)

                      After the first Ming Emperor discovered that his prime minister was plotting against him, not only was the prime minister beheaded, but his entire family and anyone even remotely connected with him. Eventually, about 40,000 (no, that is not a misprint) people were executed in connection with this case alone.

                      The place is enormous and we make judgements at our peril because without China we’re done.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      yep – if your family ever crossed the Emperor, they would kill every generation of your family that was alive, employees and servants as well and slaughter all your pets and livestock too.

                    • RedLogix

                      Well with a cultural heritage like that – can I please just stick to the greed of the Wall St elites?

                    • One Two

                      RedLogix sure you realise the Wall St greed is responsible for the deaths of millions and the maiming, physically and mentally of tens if not hundreds millions more ?

                      That’s not factoring in the poverty , inequality and environmental damage which would take the figure into the billions of lives negatively impacted

          • Sabine 10.2.1.1.3

            and the others will just have to play ball or ?

            • nadis 10.2.1.1.3.1

              Don’t forget the genocide and cultural scorched earth policies in Tibet and Western China.

              • Colonial Viper

                let’s be clear: western nations have caused the death of about 2 million Muslims since 1990. No one else on the planet comes close in terms of “genocide”.

              • Chooky

                +100 nadis …my sister saw a kneeling praying Tibetan monk beaten senseless if not lifeless on the side of a road by Chinese soldiers in Tibet…and his body thrown on the back of a truck like a sack of spuds

                outside our hotel in Chengdu a Chinese man was shot dead by Chinese police in front of a French woman roommate for exchanging money…she was badly shaken , needless to say…life is cheap in China

                …from Chinese visitors recently we hear that young Chinese males have behavioural problems in epic proportions

                ( there are approximately 50 million more Chinese males than females)

  11. Penny Bright 11

    Some Israelis question the sanity of their Prime Minister.

    http://zope.gush-shalom.org/home/en/channels/avnery/1446219610/

    Adolf, Amin and Bibi
    31/10/15

    IT IS not very pleasant when serious people around the world – historians, psychiatrists, diplomats – ask themselves if my prime minister is completely sane.

    But this is happening now. And not only abroad. More and more people in Israel are asking themselves the same question.

    All this is the result of one event. But people are now looking at many other events – past and present – in a new light.

    Until now, many strange actions and utterances by Binyamin Netanyahu have been seen as the manipulations of a clever politician, a talented demagogue who knows the soul of his constituents and supplies them with ample lies.

    Not anymore. A troubling suspicion is getting around: that our prime minister has serious mental problems. Is he losing his marbles?

    IT ALL started two weeks ago, when Netanyahu made a speech to a world-wide Zionist assembly. What he said was shocking.

    Adolf Hitler, he pontificated, did not really want to exterminate the Jews. He just wanted to expel them. But then he met the Mufti of Jerusalem, who convinced him to “burn” the Jews.

    Thus the Holocaust was born.

    The conclusion? Hitler was not so bad after all.

    The Germans are not really to blame.

    It was the Palestinians who were the instigators of the murder of six million Jews.

    If the subject had been different, this speech could be considered as one of the usual lies and falsifications typical of Netanyahu.

    Hitler was really not so bad, the Palestinians are to blame, the Mufti was the forerunner of Mahmoud Abbas. Just a routine piece of political propaganda.

    But this concerns the Holocaust, of the most atrocious events of modern times, and by far the most important event in modern Jewish history.

    This event has a direct bearing on the lives of half the Jewish population of Israel (including myself) who lost their relatives in the Holocaust, or are themselves survivors.

    This speech was not just a minor political manipulation, one of those we have become accustomed to since Netanyahu became prime minister. This was something new, something awful.

    ALL AROUND the world there was an outcry.

    There are many thousands of experts on the Holocaust. Innumerable books have been written on Nazi Germany (including one by me).

    Every single detail has been researched over and over again.

    Holocaust survivors were shocked, because Netanyahu was really absolving Hitler, and the Germans in general, of the main blame for the horrendous crime.

    So Hitler was not so bad, after all. He just wanted to expel the Jews, not to kill them. It was the evil Arabs who induced him to commit the atrocity of atrocities.
    …….

    ______________________________________

    Penny Bright

    • Bill 11.1

      This article (link below) contains some info that might be interesting to some in light of that comment. “Action T4” was the programme dedicated to exterminating the disabled and was a precursor to the broader holocaust…

      Dedicated euthanasia centres were created where disabled people were gassed in their thousands by SS guards dressed as doctors. The transports to the killing centres were T4 “charitable buses”, staffed by guards in white coats, taking them on a labyrinthine tour to mask their final destination. Families were told they could not visit because of the war, and eventually a plausible death certificate and a pile of random ashes was sent to them, even though most were killed with a day of reaching the centres.

      They would be given an initial assessment, and it was here that the ruse of the shower blocks was invented. While the deaths of disabled people continued until just past the end of the war, the official end of T4 happened in 1941, when many of the staff and high ranking officials were transferred to the new death camps, taking with them their expertise and technology. The architects of Action T4 were given major roles in the Final Solution.

      http://www.thenational.scot/comment/fiona-robertson-inhuman-treatment-of-societys-vulnerable-echoes-nazi-germany.9362

      • Rosemary McDonald 11.1.1

        First they came for the disabled….and I did nothing.

        True then, true today in NZ.

        Exactly the same narrative being used by government and bureaucrats here in Godzone….

        https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/3/32/EuthanasiePropaganda.jpg

        “A Nazi propaganda poster reading, “60000 RM. This
        is what this person suffering from hereditary defects
        costs the Community of Germans during his lifetime.
        Fellow Citizen, that is your money, too.””

    • savenz 11.2

      Netanyahu is bonkers and Israel also have nuclear weapons.

      Not a good combination.

    • nadis 11.3

      Not sure about absolving Hitler, but al-husseini was a shitty piece of work and he was certainly an enthusiastic part of the holocaust effort as well as a cheerleader for the extermination of Israel until he died in the 70’s.

      .
      “Our fundamental condition for cooperating with Germany was a free hand to eradicate every last Jew from Palestine and the Arab world. I asked Hitler for an explicit undertaking to allow us to solve the Jewish people in a manner befitting our national and racial aspirations and according to the scientific methods innovated by Germany in the handling of its Jews. The answer I got was: “The Jews are yours.”

      (Ami Isseroff and Peter FitzGerald-Morris, “The Iraq Coup Attempt of 1941, the Mufti, and the Farhud”)

      “According to the testimony of Adolf Eichmann’s chief deputy Dieter Wisliceny (who was hanged for war crimes) the Mufti played a role in encouraging the Final Solution and was a close friend and advisor to Eichmann in the Holocaust’s implementation across Europe. Wisliceny testified further that al-Husseini had a close association with Heinrich Himmler and visited the gas chambers at Auschwitz, where he exhorted the staff to be even more dedicated in its important work.

      To assist the practical slaughter of Jews and Christians, al-Husseini built an army of Muslim volunteer units for the Waffen-SS (the combat units of the dread SS) to operate for the Nazi cause in the Balkans. While the appeal for volunteers from among Muslims always struggled to meet the demands for new recruits, al-Husseini was able to organize three divisions of Bosnian Muslims who were then trained as elements of the Waffen-SS. The largest radical Muslim unit was the 13th Waffen-SS Handzar (“Dagger”) division that boasted over 21,000 men. They were joined by the Bosnian 23rd Waffen-SS Kama Division and the Albanian Skanderbeg 21st Waffen-SS Division. The Muslim Waffen-SS forces fought across the Balkans against Communist partisans and then assisted in the genocide of Yugoslavian Jews and in the persecution and slaughter of Gypsies and Christian Serbs in 1944 and 1945. The brutality extended to Catholics as well, for the Muslim Waffen-SS cut a path of destruction across the Balkans that encompassed a large number of Catholic parishes, churches, and shrines and resulted in the deaths of thousands of Catholics. By the end of the war, al-Husseini’s fanatical soldiers had killed over 90 percent of the Jews in Bosnia.”

      – Matthew E. Bunson

  12. Ergo Robertina 12

    Audrey Young’s piece last weekend won praise from a couple of commenters because it said some nice things about Jacinda Ardern (Labour Party internal politics and specifically the deputy leader role was the biggest political story of that week, apparently).
    It was just more of the same who’s up, who’s down, who’s playing the long game politics as sport that forms the more explicit conceit of this week’s piece: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11537710
    Thing is, even accepting the format, it’s hard to reconcile the irrelevant, trivial, and stereotypical descriptions of ‘play’, like this re Bennett – ‘Gutsiness showed through when she broke up a schoolgirl brawl at a shopping mall’ with the massive problems in housing, tertiary education, health, social services, cost of living, and democratic integrity these guys are presiding over.

    • Gangnam Style 12.1

      Yep, what a waste of space that ‘sport’ article was, I didn’t bother reading it, which was prob the point really, disengagement etc…I do miss John Armstrong even tho he riled me up! Least he was interesting.

  13. Draco T Bastard 13

    Must read: Bill Gates on much better the govt is over the private sector

    Bill Gates: ‘Private Sector is Inept’. Socialism needed to stop climate change

    “Since World War II, U.S.-government R&D has defined the state of the art in almost every area,” Gates said. “The private sector is, in general, inept.”

    “When I first got into this I thought, ‘How well does the Department of Energy spend its R&D budget?’ And I was worried: ‘Gosh, if I’m going to be saying it should double its budget, if it turns out it’s not very well spent, how am I going to feel about that?’” Gates told The Atlantic. “But as I’ve really dug into it, the DARPA money is very well spent, and the basic-science money is very well spent. The government has these ‘Centers of Excellence.’ They should have twice as many of those things, and those things should get about four times as much money as they do.”

    Which is pretty much the lesson from Mariana Mazzucato’s The Entrepreneurial State.

    • nadis 13.1

      I think what Bill gates meant was

      “Since World War II, U.S.-government R&D has defined the state of the art in almost every area that is related to defense”

      Think DARPA, Lawrence Livermore, Oak Ridge, Sandia, Ames, Lincoln Laboratory, NIH etc. Most US Federal spending on research is partnerships with Universities, grants to private sector sponsored institutes or top secret sites like the DOE campuses.

      Good overview here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federally_funded_research_and_development_centers

      The real power of the model is stability of funding and non requirement for immediate return on capital, both things that a corporate can struggle with. But don’t underestimate the extent to which the original aim of the civilian and military research funding programs was to entrench US technological leadership in the defense industry. The fact there are useful civilian spinoffs is incidental rather than intentional.

      DARPA is very interesting – they are a significant player in venture capital, as is the CIA via In-Q-Tel.

      • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1

        The same model has been applied across the board in the US and has proved remarkably productive. The lesson and the point is that none of the US technological lead that they had was due to the ‘free-market’ but was, as a matter of fact, due to the US government picking winners.

        If we did the same here then we’d quickly reach the same technological capability and it’d have nothing to do with markets – just like it didn’t in the US.

        • nadis 13.1.1.1

          I don’t think it was about the USG picking winners. It was more the USG saying to a bunch of smart scientists and engineers “solve these defense related issues and also do a bunch of blue sky research on stuff and don’t orry about funding for the next x years.”

          You might think I’m quibbling, but the success is not about picking winners. Neither the public or private sector is generally any good at that. The success comes from funding research without the pressure of picking winners.

          They also have scale which we would struggle to emulate. Right now for instance, an institution I am familiar with (Ames Lab at Iowa State, I have a close relative studying there) has over 250 scientists, 200 post graduate students and is probably the smallest of the DoE science facilities.

          Bear in mind too that when it comes to commercialisation of most of those technologies the US always works with the private sector, and in fact often gives it away. And, also you cant say that “none of the US technological lead that they had was due to the ‘free-market’”, otherwise you’ll force pedants like me to list thousands of innovations that were created solely by the private sector, as you well know to be the truth. But your key point that the US has a pretty good model of funding armaments industry innovation centrally plus politically targetted research plus blue sky research, and that this has many beneficial spinoffs for technological advancement generally, is right.

          Here’s another thought for you – is the following innovation due to US Govt central planning or something else?

          In 2014 9 US universities were in the top 10 universities world wide that were granted US patents – a total of 1786. If you expand out to the top 100, I can see maybe 30 from outside the US and most of those are making up places at the tail end. Not one of the top 9 US Universities was funded by the US Federal Government, though I am sure they get some grant money somewhere along the way.

          Is that centrally planned innovation?

          We all know how the US works, if it is funding something that “we” don’t like, it is socialism. If the funding is something “we” do like, it is a smart investment in the future.

          • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1.1.1

            I don’t think it was about the USG picking winners.

            You should probably read The Entrepreneurial State. In it the author goes into quite a bit more depth and it really is a case of the federal organisations funded by government picking winners. Sure, the steady funding makes a difference but those budgets still aren’t infinite and so not all ideas are funded.

            They also have scale which we would struggle to emulate.

            They do have more people and thus can have more people in R&D. But a lot of the innovation actually comes from small groups and we could put together quite a few small groups that could keep us abreast of the lead in many areas.

            Here’s another thought for you – is the following innovation due to US Govt central planning or something else?

            The US Federal government funds research. It does so through a generalised formula. That formula is relatively simple:

            1. They set up an organisation to research and develop a particular area. NASA is a good example of this
            2. Those organisations will look into what’s needed and then look for ideas on how to achieve that. They will look in both public and private institutions
            3. When they find what looks promising they’ll fund it until it either proves that it doesn’t work or until it does work

            As I say, it’s picking winners. The chances are those top 9 US universities probably get several million per year from the Federal government across many areas of research.

    • One Two 13.2

      Global Warming will not be ‘fixed’ , by the likes of Bill Gates or DARPA

      • nadis 13.2.1

        it will if it becomes an issue that the USG and the defense complex prioritises as an immediate existential threat to the USA.

  14. Tracey 14

    Anyone who has the ability could consider taking the Mastercard Ad with “Tim” who is sooooo excited about Richie and photoshop John Key onto it…

    When they first said someone had run onto the field I suspected it might be Key desperate to get into the photo.

  15. Mike the Savage One 15

    The Office of Ombudsmen is conducting a survey on experiences with and satisfaction with OIA requests and responses:

    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/OIASurvey2

    This should be of great interest to readers here, especially those who care about our democracy!

    Sadly it does not seem to have been mentioned much by media.

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  • Statistical manipulation to get publishable results
    I love data. It’s amazing the sort of “discoveries” I can make given a data set and computer statistical package. It’s just so easy to search for relationships and test their statistical significance. Maybe relationships which ...
    13 hours ago
  • More lies on the Twitter (Dan Hodges edition)
    The other big story concerning Leeds Hospital is Boris Johnson's bizzare behaviour at Leeds Hospital, where he was confronted by a journalist and challenged about a four year old boy with suspected pneumonia who was left sleeping on the floor, rather than getting  abed like a sick kid would in ...
    15 hours ago
  • LabourActivistPunchedMattHancock’sSPADGate
    So, for a brief period of history, it was alleged that a protester had punched Matt Hancock's SPAD (not a euphemism; special adviser) when Hancock visited Leeds Hospital.This was reported by the likes of Robert Peston and Laura Keunssberg, as well as the less credible Guido Fawkes.  It also quickly ...
    16 hours ago
  • France’s anti-Zionism is anti-liberté
    by Daphna Whitmore Last week France passed a law that equates anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. It is based on a definition of anti-Semitism that includes criticism of Israel such as: “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 day ago
  • Another bus lockout
    Over the past year we've seen major bus problems in Hamilton and Wellington, as drivers have sought better wages and an end to the bullshit of split shifts, which basicly see them "married to the job". And now its Auckland's turn. When NZBus's drivers planned low-level strike action of not ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Climate Change: Showing us how its done
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. But those targets are insufficient. Meanwhile, Denmark is showing us how its done:Denmark’s parliament adopted a new climate law on Friday, committing to reach 70% below its 1990 emissions in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Public sector dysfunction should not be allowed to undermine freedom of information
    Another day, another piece of legislation with a secrecy clause. This time its the innocuous-seeming Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill, which (after establishing a new body and making it subject to the OIA in three different ways) includes the rapidly-becoming-standard clauses enabling it to request information from other public ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • “This is England, this knife of Sheffield steel…”
    The state of the United Kingdom is fractured, torn up, shredded. The Empire is gone, it died a long time ago. And yet, the country is still tracking with a lead in favour of the ones who play to the ingrained, class-bound division for political gain. It is a disgrace ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    3 days ago
  • CORSIA, coming soon to an airport near you
    On 27 September, Greta Thunberg addressed a crowd of 500,000 at the School Strike for Climate in Montreal, saying: “You are a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And Sweden is also a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And in both cases, it means absolutely nothing. Because ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    3 days ago
  • Cloaking hate speech and fake news in the right to free expression.
    It should be obvious by now but let’s be clear: The same folk who regularly traffic in disinformation, misinformation and “fake news” are also those who most strongly claim that their freedom of expression rights are being violated when moves are made to curb hate speech (as opposed to protected ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    3 days ago
  • The Physics (and Economics, and Politics) of Wheelchairs on Planes
    Michael Schulson When Shane Burcaw flies on an airplane, he brings along a customized gel cushion, a car seat, and about 10 pieces of memory foam. The whole arsenal costs around $1,000, but for Burcaw it’s a necessity. The 27-year-old author and speaker — who, alongside his fiancée, Hannah ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • To Advance Civil Rights, Oppose Transgender Extremism
    We are very pleased to publish this submission is from Lucinda Stoan. She is a social justice activist, mother, and educator, based in Washington State in the  US.   This detailed and comprehensive source-linked overview of trans issues and what is at stake will be useful for many people, especially in ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Faafoi should be fired
    Newshub last night reported that Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi had apparently promised to help out a mate with an immigration issue. While its normal for people to approach MPs for assistance in this area, when you're a Minister, the rules are different: as the Cabinet Manual says, Ministers must "at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
    New Zealand's Underarm Banker: It bears recalling that the “independence” of the Reserve Bank Governor was for decades held up by neoliberal capitalists as the most compelling justification for passing the Reserve Bank Act. Interesting, is it not, how the ruling class’s support for the Bank’s independence lasted no longer than ...
    5 days ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    5 days ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    5 days ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    5 days ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    5 days ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    6 days ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    1 week ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    1 week ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Damn the Polls
    So, there have been a bunch of bad polls out for Labour, and even the Leftie's friend, Survation, have recently given the Conservatives a rip-snorting 11% lead.  You Gov's much vaunted MRP poll - which pretty much nailed the result in 2015 - is currently predicting a comfortable majority for ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Europe declares an emergency
    The European Parliament has voted overwhelmingly to declare a climate emergency:The European parliament has declared a global “climate and environmental emergency” as it urged all EU countries to commit to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The vote came as scientists warned that the world may have already crossed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Bi-Partisan Commitment To X-ing “P”.
    Pure Fear: Worse than Heroin, this drug’s addictive power was terrifying. People under its influence didn’t drift off to Elysium. Nor did it persuade inadequate individuals that they could conquer the world. No, this drug – pure crystal methamphetamine, “P” for short – unlocked the gates of Hell itself. It ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Advice about measles: when ignorance is definitely not a virtue
    As the rate of measles infection, and of deaths, continues to climb in Samoa, antivaccination activists infectious disease proponents seem intent on doubling down on their claims about vaccination. (Check pretty much any news-media FB post about measles & you’ll see exactly what I mean.) Unfortunately, some of them have ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Samoa’s devastating measles epidemic – why and how bad?
    Samoa are experiencing a devastating measles epidemic. It is possible that 2-3% of the population will ultimately be infected by the time it is over. Hopefully the mass immunisation campaign currently under way can mitigate some of this, for many it is too late. The first question many people ask ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • “It’s basic rights we are defending”: the Meghan Murphy interview
    Meghan Murphy is a Canadian writer and journalist She runs the Feminist Current website which she founded in 2012.  She was a keynote speaker for the Feminism2020 conference in Wellington this month. When Massey University cancelled the original venue booking Feminism2020 was hosted in Parliament by MP David Seymour. Meghan ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • A week of protests in Colombia
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Colombia has lived through one week of protests against the economic measures taken by president Duque. What looked like a protest that would fizzle out after its first day on November 21st is still going strong. Part of the reason for the continuance ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-neutrinos–When you are your own opposite
    Around a million billion pass through you each second, almost all originating from our sun, but few of them are likely to interact with you enroute. I was reading in a physics magazine earlier in the week about the nature of neutrinos. These are extremely numerous elementary particles, but only ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Exoplanets, life, and the danger of a single study
    By Pallab Ghosh There’s value in covering new research advances, even when the underlying science is unsettled. But there are also risks. The recent announcement that scientists discovered water on the planet K2-18b, 110 light years away, prompted a media swoon. News stories, including a piece written by me, billed ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The Intersex Continuum
    I wrote this review a couple of years ago when I was still in the process of getting my head around the politics of transgenderism, and specifically the claim that intersex conditions lend support to the notion that sex is ‘socially constructed’. Since writing this review I have come across ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Leaving us with the bill
    Two weeks ago, Malaysian-owned oil company Tamarind declared it was insolvent and went into administration after a failed offshore drilling campaign. Tamarind apparently specialises in buying oil fields at the end of their life and trying to squeeze out the last few drops of pollution. But part of their scam ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How much does flying contribute to climate change?
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz How much does our use of air travel contribute to the ...
    SciBlogsBy Shaun Hendy
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: The task before us
    Two weeks ago, the Zero Carbon Act became law. Right this moment, the Climate Change Commisison will be working on its initial budgets for 2022-25 and 2026-2030, and the UN has just given them a very clear steer:Countries must make an unprecedented effort to cut their levels of greenhouse gases ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2309) Mr. Spock
    Minor planet/asteroid (2309) Mr. Spock is named not for the character in Star Trek, but for a cat that was itself imperturbable, logical, intelligent and had pointed ears In a preceding blog post I introduced one of my favourite asteroids, (2472) Bradman, and also mentioned (6581) Sobers amongst a few ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Measles deaths and antivax misinformation
    Today the death toll from measles in Samoa rose to 32. All but four of the dead were less than 5 years old. Absolutely terrible, heartbreaking, news. That statistic alone should be enough to give the lie to the common claim by antivaccination activists plague enthusiasts that “measles is a ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Colombia: the state murder of Dilan Cruz
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh It is late here in Bogotá, almost 11.30pm on Monday the 25th of November as I write this. The day began full of hope with yet more massive marches throughout the country, a mix of the International Day of Non-Violence Against Women and the National Strike. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-fluoride propagandists appear not to read the articles they promote
    Anti-fluoride activists are rubbing their hands in glee over what they claim is “yet another study” showing fluoride harms the brains of children. But their promotion relies on IQ relationships which the paper’s authors acknowledge disappearing when outliers or other factors are considered. And they completely ignore other relationships ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The rise and collapse of classical political economy
    The feature below is the conclusion of A History of Economic Thought, whose author was a leading Marxist economist in Russia in the early 20th century, Isaac Ilyich Rubin.  The book arose from a course he ran at Moscow University following the Russian Revolution.  First published in Russian in 1929, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2472) Bradman
    There are many thousands of asteroids with formal names, some humdrum but other more noteworthy (depending on your predilections). One of my favourites, the name of which I was involved in suggesting, is (2472) Bradman, named for the Australian cricketing great.  As a minor planet (synonym: asteroid) spotter, I have ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Some cheap soundbites i thought up while reading about the underwhelming Conservative manifesto
    Tory manifesto: big on austerity, low on promise, non-existent on delivery. The Tories: the party so big on ambition they couldn't be arsed writing a manifesto. MLK: "I have a dream!"BJ: "I'll just have a nap." Labour: Broadband!Tories: Narrow minds! Labour have hope, dreams and ambition. The Tories will save ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Measles vaccination required to travel to islands and Phillipines
    The Ministry of Health has announced that “people under the age of 50 travelling from New Zealand to Samoa, Tonga, Philippines and Fiji” are now on the list of national priorities for MMR vaccination. Given the outbreaks of measles in Samoa, Tonga, Philippines and Fiji, the Ministry of Health is ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Giving the finger to Beijing
    Hong Kong has been protesting for six months for, demanding democracy, human rights, and an end to police violence. Today, they went to the polls in district council elections - a low-level of government with virtually no power, similar to community boards in New Zealand. But while the positions themselves ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Colombia’s national strike
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On Friday 22nd of November a curfew came into effect and troops were deployed on the streets, here in Bogota. It was the first time since September 1977 that a curfew had been imposed on the city. The decision was a cynical pre-planned ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago

  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Death of NZ High Commissioner to Cook Islands
    New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Tessa Temata, died in Palmerston North over the weekend, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said today. Ms Temata, 52, had recently returned to New Zealand for medical treatment. "On behalf of the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, we extend ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Wellington rail upgrade full steam ahead
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced construction is underway on Wellington commuter rail upgrades which will mean more frequent services and fewer breakdowns. The upgrades include converting the Trentham to Upper Hutt single track section to a double track, with a new signalling system, upgraded stations and level crossings, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Defence Climate Change Implementation Plan released
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw have announced the release of a Defence Climate Change Implementation Work Plan, titled Responding to the Climate Crisis: An Implementation Plan.  The plan sets out a series of recommendations based on the 2018 New Zealand Defence Assessment, The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt releases funding to support South Canterbury
    A medium-scale adverse event has been declared for the South Canterbury district, which will see up to $50,000 in funding made available to support farming communities which have been significantly affected by recent heavy rain and flooding in the area, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two weeks of solid rain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech at launch of Rethinking Plastics Report
    Thank you Professor Juliet Gerrard and your team for the comprehensive and extremely helpful report and recommendations. Thank you too to all the stakeholders and interested parties who have contributed ideas and thinking to it. “Making best practice, standard practice” is a great framework for change and the action plan ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste
    The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealandreport, released by her Chief Science Advisor ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • International student enrolments grow in universities and the regions
    International education continues to thrive as the Government focuses on quality over quantity, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. The tuition revenue from international education increased to $1.16 billion last year with the average tuition fee per student increasing by $960. The total number of international students enrolled in New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to Government Economics Network 2019 Conference
    I want to talk about one of the most pressing issues in our national life: the housing crisis and the poor performance of our cities. The argument I want to make to you is that generations of urban land use policy have lacked a decent grounding in economics. The consequences ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • DHB leadership renewed and strengthened
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