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Open mike 02/02/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 2nd, 2021 - 31 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

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31 comments on “Open mike 02/02/2021 ”

    • Sabine 1.1

      you are correct of course, but first the CEO of Wellington should have called for a years long study to gain a good view in the crisis of bursting water pipes and such. First the study, then the delay of the study, then the PR gusher of waste treating the results of the study. It seems that the Wellingtonian CEO's and other assorted suits seem to think that gushing and spraying PR alone will make the crisis go away. And if it don’t go away, just push the can down the road to someone else elected in the future. Don't they ever learn how cancel culture works?

      • Incognito 1.1.1

        Like other cities in NZ and the whole of NZ, in fact, Wellington faces a major deficit in investment in major infrastructure. PR BS won’t make one iota of difference except to keep status quo and pull the wool of voters, taxpayers, and ratepayers’ eyes. This is another reason why I’m particularly grumpy about this Government deferring the OIA review. Transparency, honesty, accountability, and integrity are most critical in critical times as they form the basis of our trust and compliance. This Government, like any other before it, is taking things for granted and counting on the ‘team of five million’ to band together unquestionably and indefinitely. Is it arrogance, hubris or fear?

        • Sabine

          arrogance and simply a kick the can down the road mindset.

          the only thing our suits in local and federal government fear is hard work, that is why they are in government. The only job were you can continously not achieve any targets and not only get to keep your job but also get a raise and a cover at Womens weekly or North and South.

          • Incognito

            It is a manager’s mind-set and most managers never make it onto the front-cover of WW or N&S. NZ is being managed by muddling middle-aged men & women into a morass of mediocrity with one word describing it perfectly: Meh.

            • Sabine

              bursting water pipes in the middle of roads is long past a managers issue. The managers mind set is what got wellington there, aided and abetted by anyone higher up in the ranking of NZ politics, and yes, these mediocre suits to get write ups – either when elected or when they leave. Btw, i consider most NZ public figures with a servants heart to be mediocre at best, criminally negligent at worst. And they love their mugs in the public sphere of Print, Radio, TV. BtW, the wellington pipe problem was a problem when i lived in the windy city in 1998.

              22 years. That would / should have been long enough a time to finish that study on the issue, right?

              • Incognito

                The manager mind-set is omnipresent and has invaded the highest levels. You may want to read today’s excellent piece by Pablo on NZ academia: http://www.kiwipolitico.com/2021/02/another-note-on-academic-decline/ [from the Feed section on the RH side of the TS Homepage]

                We do need good managers and good leaders. The problem in a small pond that is NZ that many managers/leaders honestly believe they are doing a good job. This is partly because of self-satisficing performance metrics AKA KPIs. It is then a small step to believe that they are the best to do the job, due to lack of serious competition and lack of renewal and fresh blood in a small pond.

                It is not easy being a good manager or good leader. We can’t be all excellent and that’s fine too; we also need average managers and leaders – society is a collection of bell-shape curves. However, the ones at the top who are not truly excellent should make room for others instead of hogging their positions at the expense of the many. Unfortunately, the system is designed to select and promote those that fit in best and ensure the most continuity and stability whilst meeting those KPIs, of course. Mediocrity is the result and because here in NZ we don’t like elitism and tall poppies AKA excellence, unless they’re sport or pop stars, this is unlikely to change any time soon.

    • Treetop 1.2

      Appears to be a lot of road works required in Wellington to dig up the pipes and replace them. The cost of the project would require government assistance. It is no longer cost effective to fix portions of some main pipes. Both water and sewage pipes are corroded.

      I would be interested in knowing the cost, the time and the length of pipes which require immediate replacing.

      • Sabine 1.2.1

        Studying the length of pipes needing replacement should take at least three years. Problem solved in the interim. Every time a pipe bursts the suits can point to the study that is currently undertaken and without that study nothing much can be done because the problem is not known in its minute detail.

        Please don't point to the shit / water fountain in the middle of the street. That is a new issue to be studied in detail.

        • Treetop

          Would there be significant water loss from the burst water pipes and the water required to clean up the sewage?

          • RedBaronCV

            The answer from the Mayor/ council officers seems to focus on installing water meters at costs of $60 mill to $145 mill.

            Which must be the most useless response as a large amount of water loss is doubtless on the council section of the pipes and the money would be better spent on water storage or repairs rather than on resident on property leaks.

            The council could do with:

            selling the useless convention centre

            just simply renewing the old major pipes down town which cause the major leaks and disruption without constantly studying them.

            Run a planned programme for other old infrastructure

            a soft programme advising residents how to capture save and reuse water on site

            Bulk measuring – if it can be done even on an ad hoc basis – to identify any housing cluster that uses excess water to track down on property leaks


            • Treetop

              Will the burst pipes have their own water meter and who will pay?

              • Cricklewood

                What they'll do is install meetings which will reduce water use take the difference and say look we fixed the leaks…

                Seriously though I wondwr how much damage the Kaikoura quake actually did to the infrastructure in Wellington… I'll bet its veen badly weakened hence the recent failures

    • Pat 1.3

      Catabolic collapse

      "Let’s start with some basics, for the sake of those of my readers who haven’t waded their way through the fine print of the paper. The central idea of catabolic collapse is that human societies pretty consistently tend to produce more stuff than they can afford to maintain. What we are pleased to call “primitive societies” – that is, societies that are well enough adapted to their environments that they get by comfortably without huge masses of cumbersome and expensive infrastructure – usually do so in a fairly small way, and very often evolve traditional ways of getting rid of excess goods at regular intervals so that the cost of maintaining it doesn’t become a burden. As societies expand and start to depend on complex infrastructure to support the daily activities of their inhabitants, though, it becomes harder and less popular to do this, and so the maintenance needs of the infrastructure and the rest of the society’s stuff gradually build up until they reach a level that can’t be covered by the resources on hand."


      • Incognito 1.3.1

        Too technical, too many words and I have a better description for it: Cancer. The similarities are striking; in both and most cases, the host/patient dies.

        • Pat

          Label as you prefer the physics remain the same

          • Incognito

            I see it as a pathophysiological condition of humanity hence the comparison with cancer; I’m not aware of a Law of Physics, at least not in this Universe, pertaining pathophysiology 😉

            • Pat

              excepting the cause isnt a human pathology though maybe a cultural one but the limitation is certainly grounded in physics.

        • mac1

          As one having four separate cancer diagnoses, (bladder and prostate both in two occurrences), and still alive after ten years and more, I thought I'd check the mortality rates for cancer. Some cancers have higher morbidity rates but for cancers you have a 58% survival rate after two years from diagnosis. After 10 years survival is 100%, so I'm going to live forever!

          Jokes aside, which are very necessary for survival in all its forms, the mortality rate for cancer is less than supposed.


          • Incognito

            There are three key factors in the control of cancer: 1) prevention; 2) early and accurate diagnosis (which goes way beyond just detection); 3) appropriate intervention AKA medical treatment. In the absence of all three, particularly the last one, the prognosis is poorer. With climate change, we are at the third factor, i.e. intervention. Do nothing, i.e. BAU or status quo, and our prognosis will be much worse.

            Coincidentally, the Cancer Control Agency released its first report today: https://teaho.govt.nz/reports/cancer-state

            Kia kaha.

            • mac1

              Thanks for the report. I was discussing racism and Maori health stats today and this was very useful to my case with current figures.

    • tc 1.4

      Water's a clusterf*&k across godzone. I got told Watercare in akl was around 5 billion underinvested under Ford/Banks and that was about 15 years ago ! Then supershity…..

      Hidden behind general council indeptitude and underinvestment it was only going to stay off the agenda until the shit literally flowed down streets.

      So here we are and it's now down to central govt for some long overdue leadership and reform.

  1. Sabine 2

    should we talk about the fact that in this country we had a bit of a shortage of certain birth control pills? Well just for 6 month, so its not as if the dear ladies should have had to worry to much, right? An aspirin between the knees would have done the same thing, right? /s

    Should we talk about the fact that Tesla made a loss on selling their cars, but made a profit in selling carbon credits? And can we call that a scam?

    Should we talk about the fact that median rent in Rotorua is now 460$ per week?

    But these were some of the articles that i read this weekend and it seems that electric cars are a bit of a scam, people who work run out of ditches to rent, and women can not count on getting medication their fertility control depends on? Nothing to do with much earth shattering things unless of course you are one of those that have issues sourcing housing or the pill.

    • Forget now 2.1

      It would have made more sense to have talked about the great estradiol shortage of 2020 while it was happening, Sabine (unless you were, and I just wasn't around to read it at the time). I do remember there being some concern in the trans community that; we would be let hang, and the remaining supplies prioritized for XX genotype women (technically; karyotype, but that's a bit jargony; SRYnegative genotype, to be pedantic).

      There was a vague plan for; non-orchiectomized trans people on the patch, or pill (obviously; not trans-men), to go off Testosterone blockers and give their estradiol doses to those with no other sex hormones in their bodies, if that happened. Your bones get really brittle really fast without any testosterone or oestragens in your body. But I never heard of anything being organized, so that may just have been the people I was talking to personally. And supplies have been replenished for now at least, though the pharmacies still aren't keen on your getting more than a month ahead.

  2. joe90 3

    Modern financial piracy.

    40% of multinational profits are shifted to tax havens each year

    Researchers from the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Copenhagen estimate that close to 40% of multinational profits (more than $700 billion in 2017) are shifted to tax havens each year. This shifting reduces corporate income tax revenue by more than $200 billion, or 10% of global corporate tax receipts.

    Explore the map to see how much profit and tax revenue your country loses (or attracts) in this game for profits. The tax havens can be hard to find, but you can zoom in by pressing the full-screen button.


  3. weka 4

    So much of politics would improve with this,

  4. McFlock 5

    Sounds like someone was trying to pull some sovereign-citizen-style nuttiness in Queenstown district court. Tried to argue that she wan't a "legal" entity. Warrant to arrest issued lol.

    • weka 5.1

      lol that first line in the article.

      Pity they didn't cover what happened with the request "to submit paperwork to prove she was not a "legal" entity". I know people that take her position and would like to know how the state actually responds when presented with it, because there's a fair amount of assertion about common law rights and how the state can't force you to pay fines or whatever, but not so much discussion about what happens in real life when confronting the state plays out.

      • McFlock 5.1.1

        In practise, it wouldn't be much different from someone with a warrant pretending to be someone else when the cops come calling.

        And the judge obviously doesn't care enough to disrupt the basic process with an urgent interptretation of common law rights on the nature of identity.

        So the court asks if jim-bob has appeared as summonsed.

        Nope? Warrant to arrest goes out.

        Cops get basic info on jim-bob, makes sure their ducks are in a row procedurally. Turn up to jim-bob's dwelling, workplace, or just wait for jim-bob to turn up in the system somewhere else because stupidity repeats itself. They ask jim-bob if he is jim-bob, he says yes, the arrest is made.

        If jim-bob denies being jim-bob, or claims to not exist, the police are protected from criminal liability if the person they arrest matches the information they have about jim-bob, and if they in good faith arrest the wrong person while having reasonable grounds to believe that person is jim-bob. Previous appearances in the local news might also help in the identification process (just a random point).

        So jim-bob is arrested and put before the court. Jim-bob then argues that he doesn't doesn't exist, or that the court has no jurisdiction, or whatever. Who knows, it might work.

        But if the "not a legal entity" argument isn't legally persuasive, then as long as jim-bob hasn't committed identity fraud, given false information to a cop, or resisted arrest, the court process on the original matter will simply proceed as normal.

  5. McFlock 6

    A note related to the layers of culpability post:

    The hazardous ouvea waste to be moved from Mataura back the the Tiwai smelter. The smelter company careful to say it doesn't own the dross, but will store and dispose of it because they're so community-minded. How nice.

    Only two weeks or so after the announcement that they'd made an energy deal to go until december 2024, even though Rio Tinto had months earlier declined an offer that would have saved it a quarter of a billion dollars over 4 years. That's a funny coincidence.

  6. Pat 7

    “We do need to keep in mind the fact that when we borrow money… even if we never repaid it (and I suspect a lot of what we’ve borrowed is never going to get repaid) it is still going to stop a future generation from borrowing that money.

    “There is an opportunity cost…

    “So if we use the debt to finance things a future generation will get value from… then they will inherit the debt and a better world. If we borrow the money to prop up old types of technology and business practices that they are going to need to abandon in the future, then they will inherit the debt as well as the need to adopt those lower emissions strategies in the future. That’s not fair.”


    Rod Carr, ex RBNZ.

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