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Open Mike 02/01/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, January 2nd, 2019 - 54 comments
Categories: open mike, uncategorized - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

54 comments on “Open Mike 02/01/2019”

  1. Yorick 1

    It will be interesting to see what sort of post-imperial Britain emerges from Brexit.

    • millsy 1.1

      That’s if it ever happens. I’m picking it will be delayed a year. Then after that, delayed again, and so on.

    • James 2.1

      Your kink is broken.

    • Dennis Frank 2.2

      “But what cannot be dismissed is that there have been two major grassroots movements in the last 20 years in the UK that managed to put more than half a million people on the streets of London, and there is a distinct danger that Labour will be on the wrong side of both of them.”

      Raises the interesting question of the relation between grass-roots protest and democracy. The Greens have always been big on this. Eventually I detected a flawed assumption: that the former indicates the latter. Seems true, but the evidence (election results) continually proves it wrong. At the risk of over-simplifying, what you get is leftist greenies thinking numbers on street protests equates to a groundswell of opinion amongst the populace.

      Simon Wren-Lewis is Professor of Economic Policy in the Blavatnik School of Government at Oxford University. He writes “I have to be doubly careful in posts like these because I am what one Corbyn loyalist described as an “arch-Remainer”. The emotions I ascribe to many of those who campaign for Remain are also my own. Like many of the other economists who made up Labour’s Economic Advisory Council I resigned because I saw the current leadership as too content with the referendum result. As a result I am not an impartial observer, so I need to be especially careful that what I write about Remainers as a whole is factually based.”

      Too content with the referendum result?? Corbyn et al are the target of Labour remainers because they chose to accept the will of the people? “Once you let a campaign of the right won by illegal means triumph, you open the doors to more of the same.” Ah, so he thinks Brexit is illegal. You’d think a professor would know to validate such a claim with evidence, eh? He doesn’t even try. He’s busy trying to create the impression in the minds of his readers that remainers are a bunch of puerile retards, and isn’t even self-aware enough to realise that!

      • Yorick 2.2.1

        Thanks for validating the link Dennis. I tend to part ways with you however

        “That Brexit is more than just another issue or a passing fad seems clear. After the 2016 vote, around half the Remain vote was prepared to accept the result, but the other half was not. Through two years when the two major parties and the BBC regarded the decision as made and irreversible, Remainers built various organisations with the aim of reversing the vote. They held protest marches around the UK that gradually grew in size, culminating in the biggest march in London since the Iraq war protest. Polls now suggest the Remain vote is more committed than the Leave vote, with a majority over either May’s deal or no-deal bigger than Leave’s margin in 2016.

        Where does this passion and energy come from? It is obviously a big issue, but would the kind of Brexit favoured by Corbyn and some Labour and Tory MPs (close to Brexit In Name Only – BINO) really be such a big deal compared to staying in the EU? On an emotional level I think there are three reasons why it would be. First and foremost is the question of identity. Many people in the UK regard themselves as also European, and any form of Brexit is clearly a way of cutting the UK off from the rest of Europe. Second, I think there is a strong feeling that leaving the EU represents the triumph of ideological over rational argument. Once you let a campaign of the right won by illegal means triumph, you open the doors to more of the same. A third factor is empathy for the position of European migrants in the UK, who are often friends, neighbours or colleagues.

        If a sceptical Labour leadership want to know what would happen if they enabled Brexit, the best comparison I can suggest is how they felt after parliament voted to put UK troops alongside US troops in the Iraq invasion.

        If you put these points to Corbyn loyalists you get a variety of responses that go from the misguided to downright depressing. ..”

        • Ad

          Brexit in the context of the upcoming European elections is going to resound with the issue eradicating centre rifht, centre left and hard left parties:


          its the fat rock in the river, and they need viable policy solutions different to Merkel’s “all in” career killer.

        • greywarshark

          The Brexit decision is so deeply flawed that i am amazed that any rational person can find an argument for it. Saying it was the will of the people is so specious it makes me gag. If a football crowd goes on a binge and a bash-up and break-up of everything they see, that is not acceptable, it is showing irresponsibility and actual damage to others.

          Brexit vote showed similar emotionality. It is understandable with the turmoil over past years, the scandal of the brothels set up in a northern city by young Pakistanis I believe, that the police were wary of investigating because of racism claims. So racist, assimilation problems, growing with refugees both landless and economic, and the depressing state of UK standards of living and standards of responsibility in the gilded pollies and wealthy power brokers.

          It was a hair’s breadth majority, totally unsuitable to regard as the large majority wanting to use it as a driver to break the UK apart. It could be compared more to the troubled person who has a go at suicide because everything is going wrong for them, and there is diminishing hope of improvement.

          Yet the Party in power, and apparently Labour, believe that this virtual protest by the silent majority should replace all reasoned, informed policy. They no doubt have visions that it will make them a great country again! Not when the wealthy are willing to walk on the poor to get upwards – the UK is becoming a nationwide version of the football Hillsborough tragedy.

          After that tragedy with 96 dead and 766 injured, English teams were banned from playing in Europe. If the English parliament think that they will be stronger and better largely banning themselves from Europe, they are suffering terminal delusions.

          It resulted in all English football clubs being banned from playing in Europe for five years. Fourteen Liverpool fans were found guilty of manslaughter and each jailed for three years.May 29, 2015
          Heysel disaster: English football’s forgotten tragedy? – BBC News

          And Yorick you write very persuasively but please do not let your rhetoric interfere with the facts.
          “Once you let a campaign of the right won by illegal means triumph…”
          The word illegal is quite wrong. But here is a choice from google. You should be able to find something appropriate.
          cunning, scheming, and unscrupulous, especially in politics.
          “a whole range of outrageous Machiavellian manoeuvres”
          synonyms: devious, cunning, crafty, artful, wily, sly, scheming, designing, conniving, opportunistic, insidious, treacherous, perfidious, two-faced, Janus-faced, tricky, double-dealing, unscrupulous, deceitful, dishonest; informal foxy

          • greywarshark

            Reading the large paragraphs through I find I was confused. Some of it is quotes from the original link which was to a New Statesman America article.

            • Yorick

              Yep, no problems. Cheers ..

              • greywarshark

                Glad to help though with that great collection of put-downs for the rather grimy in society. What a lovely collection of mud balls to throw, if the spirit moves you.

          • shadrach

            “that tragedy with 96 dead and 766 injured, English teams were banned from playing in Europe.”

            1. Your analogy is deeply offensive to anyone associated with the Hillsborough tragedy.
            2. Your claim about the European ban confuses two separate events, Hillsborough and Heysel. There was no ban of English clubs from Europe after Hillsborough.

            The survivors and relatives of the victims of Hillsborough have suffered enough from official incompetence and the extent of Police cover-up. And that includes the pathetic (Labour Government) Stuart-Smith review.

            96 supporters were crushed to death on April 5, 1989. A least have the respect to get your basic facts correct before using those deaths to make a cheap political point.

        • Wayne

          The Brexit result is not illegal. Neither was it a hairbreadth result. It was close, but 52 to 48 is a clear result. In NZ parliamentary electorate terms it would be a 1500 majority. Some campaigners may have broken spending limits, but that does not invalidate the result. It is not the same as a specific candidate breaching spending rules in their own favour. Campaigners, either for remain or leave, were too diffuse for such a conclusion.

          In any event, it looks like the second referendum idea has run out of steam, probably because too many proponents for a second referendum said the first one was illegal, or that those who voted to leave were stupid. Both these approaches have discredited the idea of a second referendum.

          It now seems to be “Leave on May’s terms” or a “No deal Brexit.” We will know in about two weeks.

  2. ScottGN 3

    Walking along Quay Street at Britomart in Auckland the other day. Traffic was light. There were AT Metro double deckers as well as cars (and quite a few limes and cycles) but no trucks.
    You could smell the briny tang of the sea rather than the usual whiff of diesel. The end of the holidays will obviously be the big test but so far, so good.
    It wouldn’t be a surprise if the last minute threat of legal action to halt the project by residents of Princes Wharf was quietly shelved.

    • Sacha 3.1

      “You could smell the briny tang of the sea rather than the usual whiff of diesel.”

      A taste of the future for that whole part of town when cross-traffic is reduced and only electric buses and trams remain.

      • Anne 3.1.1

        “You could smell the briny tang of the sea rather than the usual whiff of diesel.”

        Yep. that is what it was like when I was a kid. A taste of what was to come when travelling on the old “Baroona” to our dream holidays at Onetangi, Waiheke.

    • Ad 3.2

      plenty of consultation on the record.

      any High Court judicial review will be thrown out

      we have a city to liberate.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.3

      It wouldn’t be a surprise if the last minute threat of legal action to halt the project by residents of Princes Wharf was quietly shelved.

      Um, what?

      • ScottGN 3.3.1

        This Draco.
        Though just because Anne Gibson chooses to describe them as a ‘powerful group of waterfront residents and businesses’ doesn’t meant they really are.


        • Draco T Bastard

          I assume in this case ‘powerful’ = rich.

          And I can’t say that I’m surprised by such a bunch of bludgers complaining that the council is making things better.

          Auckland Transport’s plan is to rework the waterfront street, creating wider footpaths and easier navigation, designed for a 30km/h speed. The area will also feature street furniture, trees and various opportunities for business and events. These changes will, however, necessitate a reduction of the number of lanes.

          Once there are actually more people strolling past their business instead of driving and they get more customers I wonder if they’ll be declaring loudly that they tried to stop it?

          • ScottGN

            They’re a funny lot though Draco, set in their ways. There’s been a few retailers who have stymied plans to get cars out of High St for years. They’re adamant that if people can’t park right outside their shops they’ll lose business. Even though common sense should tell you that the number of car parks in that street couldn’t possibly support all the businesses there. And they have the example of O’Connell St right next door which is doing really well without cars parked along it all day long.

  3. joe90 4

    Ferreting around down the twitter rabbit hole as you do, and this wee charmer leapt out at me.

    Tomorrow I'll tell you how cannibalism was just a normal thing for Victorian sailors & how it was only in 1884 that it was made clear to everyone that it wasn't legal to kill and eat people no matter what the circumstances, and how the Victorian public were Very Angry about that.— Jay Hulme (@JayHulmePoet) December 23, 2018


    (h/t, Adele)

  4. greywarshark 5

    Thinking about air travel, and whether we might have to give up some of our cherished machinery, I thought of Richard Pearse at the beginning of the 19th century working on his designs and trying them. And I thought of the author John Christopher who wrote about a man wanting to enter a semi-industrial age in The Sword of the Spirits trilogy, first book being The Prince in Waiting.

    The Prince had his life upturned, tried to recapture it, looked at an alternative way of living, and settled for a life a little isolated from his fellows where he could carry out his ideas for technical advance. The Prince had wanted to introduce machines and new ideas and they had been rejected in his original land and he had abandoned his country. Once the curiosity is aroused and the ability to make something original and useful and apparently better takes hold, you end up being possessed by the idea.

    Our NZ inventor of a plane, Richard Pearse, was a sort of Prince in Waiting.
    He carried on with different designs but in the end he thought if he did succeed somebody or organisation would steal it. There was disagreement about the date of his first flight, about 1903-4.
    Throughout the 1930s and 1940s, Pearse continued to work on constructing a tilt-rotor flying-machine for personal use – sometimes described as a cross between a windmill and a rubbish-cart. His design resembled an autogyro or helicopter, but involved a tilting propeller/rotor and monoplane wings, which, along with the tail, could fold to allow storage in a conventional garage. He intended the vehicle for driving on the road (like a car) as well for flying.

    However he became reclusive and paranoid that foreign spies would discover his work. Committed to Sunnyside Mental Hospital in Christchurch in 1951, Pearse died there two years later. Researchers believe that many of his papers were destroyed at that time.

  5. millsy 6

    And so, Jair Bolosinaro is sworn in as Brazilian president, rounding off a slow motion coup that has been going on for the last 2 years.

    Those fancy helicopters of the armed forces are going to get worked to the limited over the next few years, as gays, environmtalists, trade unionists, “Marxists”, feminists, and ‘non traditional family units’ are thrown out of them over the Atlantic.

    • Wayne 6.1

      Not likely. While Bolosinaro may be a populist, he is not in the same zone as the Argentinian generals.

      • millsy 6.1.1

        Bolosinaro is a hard right reactionary. He is way more right wing and reactionary than you ever hope to be, Wayne. He would probably have you jailed for being a “Marxist” or whatever.

        And I was thinking more of Pinochet/Franco than the Argentine mob.

    • joe90 6.2

      He’s off to a flyer.

      For 24-year-old Cinthia Souza, from Bahia state, today is the new Independence Day of Brazil. “An independence from corruption,” she says. pic.twitter.com/LiDGcGhWZ3— The Brazilian Report (@BrazilianReport) January 1, 2019

      Bolsonaro, who spent nearly 30 years in Congress, takes office on Jan. 1 after an electoral win that gave him a mandate to hobble violent drug gangs, cut through red tape to kick-start Brazil’s economy and go after the corrupt political class.

      But a regulator’s questions about a bank account of the former driver of his son, Rio de Janeiro state lawmaker and Senator-elect Flavio Bolsonaro, has clouded his big day, leading critics to doubt the president-elect’s graft-busting credentials and his ability to deliver a new type of politics.


      The scandal arose after Brazil’s Council for Financial Activities Control (COAF) identified 1.2 million reais ($305,033) that in 2016-17 flowed through the bank account of Queiroz, who for years was on Flavio Bolsonaro’s payroll as a driver and adviser. Some payments were made to the president-elect’s wife, Michelle Bolsonaro.


  6. The Chairman 7

    Good to see Jacinda finally acknowledging (on her facebook page re video at city mission) Labour’s family package and energy payments aren’t doing enough to meet growing poverty.

    The questions now are what is she and her coalition government going to about it and when are they going to do it?

    Will they increase core benefit rates? Will they increase and extend out energy payments? Will they fast forward minimum wage increases?

    Susan St John of the Child Poverty Action Group assesses the government’s impact on the lives of the most deprived children after its first full year.

    • The Chairman 7.1

      Sign in if you would like to see the Government do more now to address poverty.

      And if you have any suggestions on what you would like to see done, feel free to share.

      If enough sign in, perhaps Jacinda will take note. We could post a link to her facebook page.

      Democracy is more than just voting at elections.

      • patricia bremner 7.1.1

        The Chairman, so you are saying “Not enough is being done” even though it is far more than under JK. Your comments make Jacinda sound as though she begrudges the help. That is far from the truth. Write directly on her facebook page.
        Unlike the last PM she reads and replies to the posts. She also actually cares.

        • The Chairman

          Indeed, patricia. Moreover, the PM acknowledges this.

          While they may have done more than Key, in this crisis they haven’t acted with the urgency required and evidently, haven’t done enough.

          I hope she cares enough to do more sooner rather than later.

    • millsy 7.2

      “Will they increase core benefit rates?”

      Do that in the current climate, and watch rents climb even further up.

      • The Chairman 7.2.1

        I think you will find private rents will go up regardless.

        Unlike rates and insurance, peoples income isn’t a cost landlords incur.

        Moreover, the largest landlord in the country is the state.

  7. joe90 8

    Fucker’s are killing with impunity.

    “The bullet that killed her..was fired by an Israeli sniper into a crowd that included white-coated medics in plain view..[None] posed any apparent threat of violence..[T]he shooting [was] reckless at best & possibly a war crime.” No one has been punished. https://t.co/lRc8Iw8Pdd— Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth) December 30, 2018

    On June 1, an Israeli soldier shot into a crowd, killing a volunteer medic named Rouzan al-Najjar. Israeli officials say soldiers only use live fire as a last resort. Our investigation shows otherwise. We analyzed over 1,000 photos and videos, froze the fatal moment in a 3-D model of the protest, and interviewed more than 30 witnesses and I.D.F. commanders to reveal how Rouzan was killed.


    Of course, the Israeli’s are crying foul and doing their DARVO thing.

    The New York Times’ 4700-word story on the death of a young Gazan woman in June 2018 during border riots is a powerful reminder of the depth and breadth of bias at the paper. (“A Day, a Life: When a Medic Was Killed in Gaza, Was It an Accident?”)

    The hagiographic December 30th account spans a remarkable three and a half full pages of the paper, tracing Rouzan al-Najjar’s personal life and sad end. Yet it manages, in all the words and images (and online videos), not to report the nature of the violence in which she was entangled nor the murderous and implacable hatred of Israel fueling it.


    • Ad 8.1

      and a much stronger chance Netanyahu will get re-elected in the upcoming contest with the left parties no longer speaking.

      • joe90 8.1.1

        If he can survive until the election.

        BREAKING: Israeli PM Netanyahu's lawyers respond: Announcing the intent to indict me before elections would be an injustice and harm to the rights of voters and to the democratic process.— Yonah Jeremy Bob (@jeremybob1) January 1, 2019

        Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit will publicize his leaning to indict Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for public corruption by February despite election season, Channel 10 reported Wednesday night.

        Channel 10 also confirmed previous Jerusalem Post reports that Case 4000 (the “Bezeq-Walla Affair”) is the strongest case; that Mandelblit will likely go after Netanyahu for breach of trust, but not bribery, in Case 1000 (the “Illegal Gifts Affair”); and that Case 2000 (the “Yediot Ahronot-Israel Hayom Affair”) may still be closed entirely.


    • Draco T Bastard 8.2

      Israel itself is a war crime as laid out by the founding charter of the UN.

  8. greywarshark 9

    Could a national legal case be mounted by the Brexit protesters against the UK parliament on the basis of contra proferentem.

    Contra proferentem – Wikipedia
    Contra proferentem (Latin: “against [the] offeror”), also known as “interpretation against the draftsman”, is a doctrine of contractual interpretation providing that, where a promise, agreement or term is ambiguous, the preferred meaning should be the one that works against the interests of the party who provided the …

    Contra Proferentem Rule – Investopedia
    https://www.investopedia.com › Investing › Financial Analysis
    Feb 20, 2018 – The contra proferentem rule is a rule in contract law which states that any clause considered to be ambiguous should be interpreted against the interests of the party that requested that the clause is included. Contra proferentem rules guide the legal interpretation of contracts …

  9. Draco T Bastard 10

    More delusional BS coming at you from the world of shares:

    Stock markets in Asia Pacific made a cautious start to 2019 after figures showing that China’s manufacturing sector contracted for the first time in 19 months in December.

    Equities across the region were broadly lower, after the worst year for global stock markets since the financial crisis in 2018 in the face of concerns over a slowing global economy, tightening monetary policy and trade tensions. 

    Despite gaining 0.9 per cent in the last trading session of 2018 on the heels of a phone call between the US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, which Mr Trump described as “long and very good”, the S&P 500 ended down 6.2 per cent for the year, while the FTSE All World Index shed 11.5 per cent.

    Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was the worst performer in the region on the first trading day of the new year on Wednesday, sliding 2.3 per cent with the financial and technology sectors falling 1.9 per cent and 2.1 per cent, respectively. The Hang Seng China Enterprises index of Hong Kong-listed Chinese companies fell 2.7 per cent.

    This, boys and girls, is called speculation. It’s done, not on the hope that the business will succeed, but on the hopes of being able to sell the shares at a higher monetary value.

    Such a transaction causes no value to be produced and thus is just another syphon employed by the rich upon on the productivity of the poor.

    It’s called bludging.

    PS. I seem to be having trouble verifying the address.

  10. Eco Maori 11

    We need to stop havesting our forest all over the world Papatuanuku to save our world for the grandchildren I posted a story yestesday to show how the oo.1 % control the world power is all about the people beleving in the storys told be it fact or FICTION the 00.1% use fiction to CON us . Its fact we are part of mothernatures creatures and if we let them kill them off our mokopunas will be the ones to suffer.
    Australia is among one of the world’s wealthiest nations; yet, its relatively small human population (22.5 million) has been responsible for extensive deforestation and forest degradation since European settlement in the late 18th century. Despite most (∼75%) of Australia’s 7.6 million-km2 area being covered in inhospitable deserts or arid lands generally unsuitable to forest growth, the coastal periphery has witnessed a rapid decline in forest cover and quality, especially over the last 60 years. Here I document the rates of forest loss and degradation in Australia based on a thorough review of existing literature and unpublished data.Overall, Australia has lost nearly 40% of its forests, but much of the remaining native vegetation is highly fragmented. As European colonists expanded in the late 18th and the early 19th centuries, deforestation occurred mainly on the most fertile soils nearest to the coast. In the 1950s, southwestern Western Australia was largely cleared for wheat production, subsequently leading to its designation as a Global Biodiversity Hotspot given its high number of endemic plant species and rapid clearing rates. Since the 1970s, the greatest rates of forest clearance have been in southeastern Queensland and northern New South Wales, although Victoria is the most cleared state. Today, degradation is occurring in the largely forested tropical north due to rapidly expanding invasive weed species and altered fire regimes. Without clear policies to regenerate degraded forests and protect existing tracts at a massive scale, Australia stands to lose a large proportion of its remaining endemic biodiversity. The most important implications of the degree to which Australian forests have disappeared or been degraded are that management must emphasize the maintenance of existing primary forest patches, as well as focus on the regeneration of matrix areas between fragments to increase native habitat area, connectivity and ecosystem functions. Ka kite ano links below


  11. Eco Maori 13

    Its good to see that our Aotearoa law schools value our Young Wahine like they deserve to be valued as Equal people in Aotearoa society Mana Wahine
    All six law schools cut ties with Russell McVeagh All six of the country’s university law faculties have now rejected ties with the troubled law firm Russell McVeagh while it conducts an independent review into incidents of sexual misconduct and its culture.
    The University of Auckland joined the fray in a powerfully-worded statement saying it had put its relationship with Russell McVeagh on hold for the rest of the year, and that there should have been a strong apology from the firm.
    Otago, Canterbury, Waikato, AUT and Victoria universities had already announced they were rejecting any recruitment branding, and Russell McVeagh-related events on their campuses.
    Auckland’s Dean of Law, Professor Andrew Stockley, told staff and students today that students “invited to an event or employed in any capacity should expect appropriate and professional behaviour at all times, and that the school would not accept any student being subjected to inappropriate behaviour, pressure, or sexual harassment”.“Our caution in part relates to the on-going allegations of prior alcohol-fuelled sexual impropriety between senior staff and students on the firm’s premises but also the firm’s recent description of such events as ‘consensual’. This description suggests the culture that fostered these behaviours may very well remain well ingrained in the firm. Ka kite ano Links below


  12. Eco Maori 15

    Kia ora Te Kaea it cool seeing the Pa wars of Ngati-porou 21 pa competeing Ka pai . Taro Black looks like we might have a new Wahine tennis star good to see Venus Williams at the event to.
    Looks like the Waka ama sprint is going strong Ka kite ano P.S te Mokopunas just turned up

  13. Eco Maori 16

    Kia ora Newshub Milisa Ruaumoko has been doing a Haka in Tamaki makaurau and North land.That boy who has blocked the tunnel in Auckland must be high on Pee.
    There is nothing wrong with freed camping the Aotearoa needs to be good host and prove for them quite a good phylosophy that our tipuna have.
    trump should be spending money on the people who have no fix abode in Calafornia whom were affected by the Campfire.
    I have had a few events of the sandflys playing silly buggers on the roads every time I go on a journey??????????????.
    Is that a phenomenon the fright train in Denmark losing crates of beer and causing a accident on a passenger train.
    Space travel is the future and the more Nasa can learn about space from the Horizon space probe the faster we will inhabit Mars. Oliver Newton John All the best Grease was a big hit when the nehio were short.
    The wool serf boards is a very good invention that could turn into a billion dollar industry Make sure you patient your invention someone will steal it from under your nose.
    The magpie is so qute playing with the cat is the magpie missing hope it comes.
    The sports looks good Niki. Ingrid I see the weather radar picked up a swam of insect moving from the south island to the north. Ka kite ano P.S te Mokopunas are here

  14. greywarshark 17

    Happy New Year Eco Maori.
    I’ts a bit late for some of this but it’s using te reo which I should be doing more of;
    Meri Kirihimete me ngā mihi o te tau hou ki a koutou katoa.
    Mauri ora to you.

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