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Open mike 02/04/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 2nd, 2011 - 101 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

It’s open for discussing topics of interest, making announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

Comment on whatever takes your fancy.

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

Step right up to the mike…

101 comments on “Open mike 02/04/2011 ”

  1. logie97 1

    So Henry is back on the Radio.
    (Does Joyce claim to have divested all interest in that network?)

    Still have the feeling that the other party in that disgraceful “Governor General” episode got off lightly – the interviewee’s lack of nouse and presence to recognise insult was appalling.

    • higherstandard 1.1

      Hurray ! Best meeeeeeedia personality NZ’s produced in years. I’ll be listening to him and guffawing regularly, if you don’t like him clearly you aren’t a real NZer.

      • Tigger 1.1.1

        Then I’m proud not to be a real NZer.

      • Armchair Critic 1.1.2

        I must be an unreal NZer, then. I’ll express my appreciation by continuing to not listen to whatever station it is that has employed him, ever.

        • ianmac

          It also seemed to show that he is going to be on TV3. Read that this morning I think on the Herald.

    • Deborah Kean 1.2

      Right now I am wondering whether I actually saw what I thought I saw this morning when I went down the dairy for a chocolate bar…
      One Sunday paper had a picture of a grinning Paul Henry and a caption that said something like ‘Oh, no! Not again!’
      I have to have imagined that, surely? (I won’t waste the money on Sunday papers, so I don’t know.)

  2. HoneMeke 2

    If anyone here uses facebook, here’s a vote out national event page:


    Over 7,000 people have joined, however, the place is currently being overrun by several holier-than-thou RWNJ’s. It’d be good to have some more people from this side of the fence come in and add their two cents…

    • Jum 2.1


      Consider me voted to out National i.e. out National from government and out National on its dirty tricks.

  3. MikeG 3

    Why did our PM commit $4.1million to fixing up the turf at AMI Stadium before the cost of fixing up the stands is known?

    Anti-spam word: confuses

    • William Joyce 3.1

      Good question. The Govt wont payout to people who did not have insurance on their house because of the Moral Hazard of it setting an example that others don’t need to get insurance because the govt will always bail out the uninsured.
      Yet, the owners of AMI stadium get money equal to 32 plus houses for being stupid enough not to insure what it a absolute essential necessity for their business.
      A multimillion dollar asset that is absolutely useless unless there is a field to watch.
      The govt has given you and my hard earned money to rescue people from their own stupidity with multimillion dollar consequences.
      We may not have an aristocracy as such but we do have a privileged class for whom the normal rules don’t apply.
      – Entitlement to new expensive car rather than old expensive cars.
      – Golden parachute payments even if you have done a really bad job of being a CEO.
      – Large payoffs from you job as a supreme court judge so you can get out of an inquiry to you conduct.
      – If you steel a TV you get prison – if you steel millions held in trust you get home detention.
      and the hits keep on coming.

    • tsmithfield 3.2

      “Why did our PM commit $4.1million to fixing up the turf at AMI Stadium before the cost of fixing up the stands is known?”

      Because the stadium structure was insured but the turf wasn’t. The rational for contributing funds is that AMI stadium brings a lot of income to Christchurch, so getting it operational as soon as possible is good for the city generally. Ordinarily I would agree that we shouldn’t be rescuing people for not being insured though. Moral hazard and all that.

      • Colonial Viper 3.2.1

        Ordinarily I would agree that we shouldn’t be rescuing people for not being insured though. Moral hazard and all that.

        What a load of bollocks

        Bail outs for special interest groups. Nothing for everyone else.

        The rational for contributing funds is that AMI stadium brings a lot of income to Christchurch,

        Stupid. You must think we are idiots. Continuing payments to abandoned workers and distressed businesses will bring a lot of income to Christchurch. Right now. But the Government doesn’t actually give a shit about bringing a lot of income to Christchurch so those are getting cut ASAP.

        As if people are going to go to matches in a city which smells of sewerage.

        The NATs have no plans, and no priorities – that is, short of what they always do, favour special interest groups at the expense of the many.

      • MikeG 3.2.2

        ok – so how much is it going to cost to fix up the stands etc? Shouldn’t that be known before the Govt promises taxpayer money to fix up the turf? Not much point in having a great playing surface if no one can watch the games on it.

        • William Joyce

          “Shouldn’t that be known before the Govt promises taxpayer money to fix up the turf?”

          You would think so. I suspect that it was a promise made (like all National decisions) in a dark smoke filled room and on the hoof.
          When you are under pressure and you don’t put much thought into it, you are more likely to act according to type and according to your hidden values.

          “Of course you can have the money! Supporting rugby will make me look good. How ’bout a new Bmer as well, we have some coming.”

      • vto 3.2.3

        “AMI stadium brings a lot of income to Christchurch”

        Bullshit it does. It needs topping up by us and our kids (rates) each and every year because it makes a loss. A few people from out of town who occasionally come to see an event may stay to spend some money in town (which is then of course lost to their home town, which equals nil overall gain).

        The stadiums expenses have so far exceeded its income to the tune of about $75million, of which $45million was to be stumped up by us and our kids pre-earthquake. We and our kids pay for sportsmenwomen to play games at AMI Stadium (and what a dumb-arse name too).

        What a crock of shit.

        And then on top of that it gets a govt payout for an uninsured pitch. Total incompetence. What a farce.

        • logie97

          Typical of the NZRFU. Has its hand out for any moneys going. About time user pays was practised by one of the nations biggest “beneficiaries”.

          Am sure that the RFU is organised such that it enjoys charitable status, probably has a heap of trusts and therefore pays a minimum of dues to IRD. And if only a smidgeon of their profits was to go to grass roots sports… nah, too many players being bankrolled in the professional arena.

          As an aside, the RFU has come up with this “brilliant” idea that schools should study the World Cup participant nations. They have even produced some form of education pack. Wow, who would have thought of such a brilliant idea. Must have been eons since an Olympic or Commonwealth Games or World Cup of Soccer tournament.

          And its cheerleaders will no doubt denigrate any school and teachers who will not do its bidding over the World Cup – a profession that has been straight-jacketed recently to delivering some nebulous Standards in the curriculum.)

          • Jum


            Yes, yet someone has already pointed out that the rugby ‘pack’ has more info in it than the national ‘standards’ pack – obviously a political tool to divide the teachers/parents/principals/boards/pupils and it worked beautifully.

            Yes, yet the National Council of Women, NZ, that helps to protect the rights of women, subject to domestic violence when the game score goes wrong, and the refuge numbers increase overnight, is no longer listed with charitable status, removed last year by this government – more evidence of NAct’s misogyny.

            I shall be encouraging the NCWNZ to publically out this government as a misogynistic, narcissistic authoritarian boys’ club. This will probably get a good percentage of the male New Zealanders all excited since the rugby player/columnist (whatsisname) once wrote that men hate women. Key is playing the ball to that crowd of cavemen and that is what all New Zealand men will be recognised by, domestically and internationally. Take that ball and run with it real men who aren’t afraid of accepting women as equals.

          • RobC

            NZRU (they’ve dropped the F) has an exemption from income tax (in the Income Tax Act) as do all sporting organisations and clubs. I work in the sport & rec sector, and for quite a few years I also had a “problem” with this “commercial entity”, especially when they received Govt handouts.

            But at the end of the day, NZRU is a non-profit organisation. I have seen their annual accounts, and you will be pleasantly surprised at how much they spend on “grassroots”. The amount they get from the public purse is not huge, and tagged for specific things like women’s rugby. Cycling and Rowing (and other sports) get more money than Rugby from the taxpayer.

            NZRU is not perfect, but over the years I have appreciated the difficulty they have as a non-profit organisation, to balance the commercial and amateur interests of their sport under the one roof. It is not easy.

            Having said all that, there is no fucking way the Govt should have paid $4.1 million to fix the turf at AMI. And I think it would not have been at the suggestion of NZRU, more likely a “good idea” from the Govt. This is the same Govt who gave NZ Soccer $300,000 (from memory) on a whim to (in part) employ a media manager when they qualified for last year’s World Cup. In their shoes, it is hard to turn down “free money”.

            • Jum

              Um, RobC

              When did we have a women’s rugby game on free TV in full – any game will do…?

              • RobC

                Sporting organisations do not get money to entertain the masses through any broadcasting medium. It’s either for high performance or direct participation (in the main).

                I don’t mean this in a nasty way, but if you really want to watch a game of women’s rugby, don’t rely on the TV; find out where they are, go and watch live, and you probably don’t have to pay any money to watch!

                • Jum

                  Well, sorry, RobC but I do take it in a nasty way.

                  Internationally, women have won world cups when the guys were sweating it out in noneth place. Yet, obviously, the population and tv controllers prefer to televise loser male rugby players than they do winner female rugby players. What a great look for New Zealand.

                  • RobC

                    You don’t get any argument from me about the treatment of women’s sport. It is a different issue – as you say, it is “the population” and “tv controllers” who you can point the finger at, not the NZRU.

                    Please, I was responding to a point Logie97 made where he implied NZRU went cap in hand to the Govt for $4.1 mill to fix AMI where I don’t believe that is the case. I mentioned women’s rugby as an example where they receive (or have received) taxpayer funding, that is all.

                    • logie97

                      You will know that you cannot separate Rugby and Politics in this country. The RFU does not officially have to go cap in hand – it has a bevvy of shareholders and stakeholders in government circles at any one moment. A nod and a wink is all that it would have been needed (notwithstanding the fact that members of government would have been well aware of a “need”.)

                      And just how much money trickles down to junior level development – that is debatable – just look what is happening to the Air New Zealand Cup – going bust – provinces merging.

                      (Incidentally, the same thing is happening to that other sacred cow – cricket.)

      • Janice 3.2.4

        ……and if there is a spare $4 million going why do the Auckland ratepayers have to pay the $3 million for the extra games?


        • grumpy

          Because Auckland wanted those quarter finals right from day 1. Canterbury had to fight like hell to get any of them and even before the tremors had finished, Auckland were crying out for them.

          That’s why – they should also be paying the $4m to repair the AMI pitch….

  4. RobC 4

    Quiz time. Who said this?

    “We have a plan for this economic problem; we will reach through the recession. This is not a time for slash-and-burn; this is a time for the Government to show some strength”

  5. Pascal's bookie 5

    COIN is hard, still.

    It is harder yet in a country that is not your own, as all the locals will be reflexively distrustful of your actions. It is especially hard in a country that has a radically different culture than your own.


    When a large section of your own country is fearful and mistrustful of that other culture, then being successful at COIN becomes, I suspect, impossible.

    That we should fight apparently impossible-to-win wars of choice is difficult proposition to defend.

    • RobC 6.1

      I’ve been mulling on this today. A couple of articles in the media helped …

      The Dom Post in a rare piece of investigative journalism used the OIA to find out benefit fraud amounted to $15 mill in 2009. Earlier last week, KPMG put out their fraud indicator report that totted up $100 million due to corporate fraud in the last 6 months of 2010. Most of it committed, they said, due to management (i.e. abuse of position)

      I really hope the RWNJ’s sing from the top of their lungs about benefit fraud. ‘Cause the reality is white-collar crime costs this country far more than benefit fraud does.

      And don’t get me started on the inequity of sentences handed down by the courts between the two …

  6. tsmithfield 7

    I look forward to seeing a few articles here on the crime stats, considering the interest it attracted in terms of articles and comments when the previous stats were released. Some enthusiastic praise for the government perhaps given the dramatic reduction?

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      Hey TS stop backing an outfit which is selling out future generations of NZ’ers.

      By the way, the crime stats are down because the economy is so shithouse, even crime doesn’t pay these days.

      • Gus 7.1.1

        Thats an insightful summary of the situation Viper. Perhaps you could share your analysis of the crime stats to allow us to understand your thinking, or are you simply allowing your own political views cloud your judgement?

      • tsmithfield 7.1.2

        “By the way, the crime stats are down because the economy is so shithouse, even crime doesn’t pay these days.”

        So when crime stats aren’t falling its the government’s fault, and when they are falling, its the criminal’s fault?

        • Colonial Viper

          Police association president Greg O’Connor said the gains were down to extra investment which has seen 1000 extra police officers added since 2006.

          “For the first time in many years, police are now able to act proactively across a range of areas including organised crime and methamphetamine, instead of being constantly short-staffed and able to do little more than rush from one emergency call to the next.”

          However, those gains were “extremely fragile” and could be reversed if a razor was taken to the police budget, he said.


  7. NickS 8


    Not entirely surprising actually, in the 3rd year course Kelly’s head of, the literature he gave us indicated that plant-pollinator relationships often weren’t as tight as fruit/seed dispersal relationships. i.e. other native, or introduced species could take over vacant pollinator roles except where a high degree of specialisation had taken place (i.e. Yucca plants are only capable of being pollinated by one species of moths) and in NZ’s case, while nectivorous birds are common, generally flowering plants can also be pollinated by insects.

    Dispersal relationships however often rely on the disperser being able to ingest large fruits, case in point the extinction of many pigeon species in the pacific islands caused by human and kiore predation has lead to plant species with large fruit becoming either poorly dispersed, or close to extinction, with only adult trees present. Secondly, this relationship also can involve modification of the seeds outer coat by digestion processes and without seeds may not germinate, but also via digestion seeds acquire a nice bundle of nutrients.

    Anyhow, what this indicates is that kereru probably cannot be replaced by other endemic fruit eating birds for some species, but also that the presence of some kereru in a forest fragment or park isn’t enough to maintain dispersal alone. There needs to be a significant population level for ecological functions to occur, as without competition for fruit resources, often less rewarding fruits will be ignored.

    As to what can be done, well we already know that rats, possums and cats are major predators of eggs, nestlings and nesting adults and that poison bait stations and 1080 drops can prove effective, and coupled with captive breeding and release programs could probably bring kereru numbers up to functional levels. However, as always funding is limited for all parties involved and while there are already groups working towards protecting kereru, this new research suggests that a rethink of current strategies might just be a good idea. Personally, I’d like to see a similar nation wide program to that for the kiwi, but any new program also has to recognise that kereru require healthy forests to successfully breed, i.e. larger scale pest control and replanting efforts.

  8. joe90 9

    More stupidity, atheists die first.

    Best take on this comes from YouTube commenter jacobryanball10: “very true, just the other day I was being chased by a bear. Then I realized I should stop and pray. I did just that, then Jesus came down, killed the bear and said “Hey see you again on May 21, or December 12th, or some other time, I haven’t quite decided yet.” I said “Sweet, I’ll bring the water, you make the wine” Then he rode a flying donkey into heaven while waving the American flag chanting “USA USA USA!” I’d like to see THAT happen to an atheist.”

  9. Jum 10

    Nick S

    If this government stopped thinking about building all over the green belts with crazy paving housing, it would prevent future human/rat, feline and canine encroachment on our fellow creatures’ back yard.

    But that’s exactly what National/Act’s 19thC thinking on ‘urban form and land use’ for Auckland will create – a wasteland for any birds in any areas, the Wenderholm Regional Park included.

    Len Brown must be listened to with his Auckland Plan; this government has no clue or plan to care for the wants and needs of the living forest and birds.

    It’s 2011, year of the forests; go and hug a tree before some developer cuts it down. While I’m writing about developers; country-wide laws should force developers to lose the land that harboured the tree they felled illegally. Maybe then they may have some respect for heritage.

  10. RedLogix 11

    The ultra-slow moving train wreck that is Fukushima reaches yet another tipping point; various sources are now pointing to the probability that there are now ‘localised criticality’ events occuring which emit intense bursts of neutrons and gamma radiation…killing anyone exposed.

    If this is re-criticality confirmed then even sending workers in on suicide missions becomes pointless. At that point it’s game over … the site will simply be abandoned and left to spew intense amounts of contamination into sea and air for decades if not centuries.

    Ground contamination at sites well away from the plant continue to rise…in some locations it’s already higher than the Chernobyl exclusion zone.. and this is after just three weeks. What will happen after months, years and decades of this is unthinkable.

    This has to be the end of nuclear fission. All 450 commercial reactors operating in the world now must be decommissioned urgently… and no new ones ever built again.

    • MikeG 11.1

      But I read on Kiwibog a couple of weeks ago that there’s nothing to worry about – it’s all a media beat-up. Are you trying to tell me that increased radiation levels in and around the power plant are an indication that something is wrong? I’m sure that in about 300+ years it will be safe to live in Fukushima again – you just have to take a long-term view!

      • Colonial Viper 11.2.1

        If this is re-criticality confirmed then even sending workers in on suicide missions becomes pointless.

        If this is happening it is definitely Oh shit.

        This now has the potential to be much worse than Chernobyl, where the initial explosions blew apart the fissile material and AFAIK prevented ongoing criticality.

  11. Colonial Viper 12

    Christchurch casino put on chopping block

    The axe hasn’t fallen yet but preparations are there. Interesting, because it means that highly professional analyses from the casino and its parent company show that they will not be able to open anytime soon (in the next 1-2 months) and if they do reopen recovery of customer and business numbers will be slow.

    I personally dislike casinos but this is another blow for Christchurch and a reminder of how serious the city’s situation is when major employers like this start to buckle.

    Thanks for your help, Key and English. Lookf like your decision to phase out income support for Christchurch workers was the last straw.

    Economic vandals.


    • Lanthanide 12.1

      I get the impression that the Casino wasn’t eligible for the subsidy. Otherwise they would be saying “we will pay you the government subsidy for the next 8 weeks, then you can choose to be redundant”, not “choose redundancy on Monday”.

      • Colonial Viper 12.1.1

        Ah right because they are a big employer not based in Christchurch. So Key and English figured that its more OK for the Christchurch economy to lose workers from those places.

        • Lanthanide

          News report on TV confirmed they aren’t eligible for the existing government subsidy.

          A union representative said that SkyCity, now 1/2 owner of the casino, is on track to make $130-140m profit this year. So they don’t really have any excuse to stop paying staff – it’s just the richest people wanting to maintain their incomes.

          Really I think we can slate everything back to the law that requires companies to maximize profit for their shareholders, and if they fail to do so, they can be sued. It leaves no room for compassion in these situations.

          • Jum


            Tell me a little about the ‘law that requires companies to maximize profit for their shareholders, and if they fail to do so, they can be sued.’

            Is that a weaker law to the TPPA taking over NZ later this year?

            • Lanthanide

              To be honest I am not sure if such a law exists in NZ or not. From the tone of your post, I guess it doesn’t. I do know that such a law exists in the US, though.

              Even if there is no specific law for it in NZ, the mentality is still the same – all companies put their shareholders ahead of everyone else, including their customers and the public at large. Telecom is a prime example (particularly under Theresa Gattung).

              Did find this though: http://www.bellgully.com/resources/resource.00061.asp
              “The primary legal responsibility of the directors is to ensure that the Companies Act 1993 and the company’s constitution are followed at all times. Directors must act in good faith and in the best interests of the company.

              The Code of Proper Practice recommends that directors:

              decide on steps to protect the company’s financial position;”

              “The Act clarified that the company means the enterprise itself as contrasted with the existing shareholders. This clarification did not introduce additional stakeholders to whom directors would owe duties.

              The power to take enforcement actions against directors for failure to comply with their duties lie with both the company and its shareholders. The company may take action to remedy or prevent breaches of the Act or its constitution. Shareholders may bring a personal action against directors for a breach of a duty owed to them or, with High Court leave, may bring a derivative action in the name of the company.”

              • Jum

                Thanks Lanthanide,

                I’ve got some interesting little snippets too, which would make most people ashamed to be in business with these people. The2001 Gaynor column is so today with this 19thC government:

                I remember $3m Gattung..”Telecom has used confusion as its chief marketing tool, and that’s fine…”, (I wonder where Roderick Deane – NZbusinessrotundtable – was in that little picture?)


                I also remember Joan Withers, ex-Director of ‘failed’ Feltex.


                (“Having said all of that, there is not a day that goes by that I don’t think about the Feltex situation and the Feltex experience. Because being involved in a company where, for whatever reason, shareholder value is lost is deeply disturbing to any director worth his or her salt.”
                Withers, who was re-elected with a 99.5 per cent vote, said one benefit was what could be learned from such experiences.
                “I have to tell you that those learnings continue to inform my performance as a director,” she said.)


                There are probably not many company directors living in South Auckland, but there are advantages to living away from common company director habitats.
                “We like it here. We do our shopping in Papakura and I suppose you probably get to see a side of life you would not see in Remuera or Takapuna,” Withers says.

                It makes me sick to my stomach that these creatures think they are somehow classy. TVNZ loves her; I’m not surprised.

                • RedLogix

                  Cripes… that Brian Gaynor article is an absolute public caning of the Business Roundtable. Not that he’s saying anything new to the leftwing, and it’s all far too late… but hell it’s good to read someone at least taking to these parasites.

                  • Jum

                    Yes, RedLogix,

                    It’s the Brian Gaynor’s who should be knighted not the sheep shit in his 2001 column.

                    Arise Sir Gaynor! It has a nice ring to it. The People’s Knight.

                    What a shame NZers forgot over the next 8 years what had been done to them. We wouldn’t be faced with PM Collins or Joyce.

  12. chris73 13

    This has made my respect for Dear Leader go up (never thought I’d be typing that)


    • Carol 13.1

      As far as I have seen, this idea of a conspiracy to topple Goff was all generated by the right. Its done with, and still they’re trying to keep alive the leadership issue in the MSM (with a little support from some disgruntled lefties)…. all in an attempt to distract from the real political issues that need to be front and centre of the up-coming elections.

      moving on……

  13. Jenny 14

    viable alternative to petrol being tested

    Instead of the terribly dangerous and still experimental technology of deep sea oil drilling. This is what we could be doing.

    Why should we risk our marine environment to be a a guinea pig for Big Oil’s deep sea oil drilling experiment, when New Zealand could be the world’s test board proving ground for rolling out this alternative fuel?

    Just switching off Comalco would give us the electricity for a massive replacement of petrol with this handy renewable substitute.

    The carbon credits alone could be enormous. (Maybe even enough to cover some of the changeover costs)

    capcha – “mixes”

    • Lanthanide 14.1

      I’d take that report with a huge grain of salt, both from journalists not knowing anything about science in general, and also from scientists who always paint their discoveries in the best light, especially those in the energy industry.

      It does sound promising though – a liquid carrier for hydrogen.

      • Colonial Viper 14.1.1

        Pie in the sky tech is not going to be here quick enough to save us from $4/L petrol, sadly.

        • ianmac

          Watching Tv3 News tonight as they yet again made a meal of the Hughes affair and the supposed challenge to Mr Gough.

          Then it hit me.
          The stories are rumbling around the longevity of Key’s leadership. Two highly placed National insiders tell me that Key is failing to address the problems nor managing to please the Right wing of National or the Moderates.

          There is talk of rolling the Leader. If not before the election then straight after. Mentioned as a possibility is Mrs Collins. When asked she kept a very blank face and denied that she was considering leadership today.

          When Mr Brownlie was asked about the rumours he looked decidedly unsettled and as he walked away he said “No Comment today.”
          Enquiries addressed to the National Party spokesman David Farrar brought a “No comment today also. Mr Farrar has gone to ground.

          Mr Key uncharacteristically dodged waiting reporters but looked unsmiling and stressed.

          • Lanthanide

            Ian, is this actually true, or are you concocting a “National party version” of the recent events?

            • ianmac

              Does it matter Lanth. It seems to me that it is just as credible as the Phil scramble. Neither confirm or deny. 🙂

            • grumpy

              Hi Lanth,

              I’ve got a bloody good bridge for sale, currently located Sydney.

              Signed: Queensland Harry

          • Anne

            Yeah Ianmac, I’ve heard that story too. In my case it came from a Labour source who has his ears very close to the ground. I don’t know about Farrar going to ground, but Hooten has apparently shot through to Australia and there’s talk of it being permanent. What makes me suspicious is that there’s been no photo ops this week. Must be the first time since he became PM. All very intriguing.

            oops… delete ianmac!

          • Jum


            LOL. I love this site.

            Sitting there in its little box, in bright blue capitals – GONE

            Key gone – By lunchtime d’ya think?? Huh, d’ya think?

        • Jenny

          “Pie in the sky tech is not going to be here quick enough to save us from $4/L petrol, sadly.”

          Colonial Viper

          Yes, that’s true Snake. But a change in orientation away from fossil fuels could save us from this

      • Jenny 14.1.2

        Hi Lanthanide -Talking about replacing petrol how about this for a ‘proven’ alternative to coal.

        – Biochar or Bio-Coal – an appropriate and practical substitute for high value anthracite coking coal, which is typically used in metallurgical applications such as iron and steel production (The coal being mined at Pike River).

        video: A New Way to Make Coal

        With our huge renewable exotic forests, New Zealand is perfectly placed to replace coal with Green Coal.


        There is no need for anyone to risk their lives underground to pad the profits of the coal mining lobby.

        Not only is biochar an exact replacement for coal in power generation or coking coal for steel smelting. it is also a clean green soil enhancement which in huge part would replace imports of oil based artificial fertilisers.

        A field trial, here, showed an increase in crop yields of 800%, described by the experimenters as miraculous.

        The only thing preventing us from implementing these sorts of technologies is the political will to do so.

        • William Joyce

          Jenny, to add an other dimension to this wonderful idea…..

          I saw a doco on the islands of fertility that the pre-Columbian inhabitants had deliberately created in the Amazon forest/wetlands using charcoal. Then I saw a news item of research being done (I think at an institution in the SI) to use a giant microwave oven to reduce vegetable matter into masses of charcoal/carbon.
          We could harvest all sorts of trees that have sequestered carbon, microwave them into carbon (and release the oxygen etc) and then bury the residual carbon under our farms to increase fertility. Increase fertility/production and off set other emissions through credits.

          Of course, short of finding some venture capital, you would need a government brave enough to take a punt and that was not ideologically opposed to getting off it’s arse.

          • RedLogix

            All this is possible. I did some reading around biochar and it’s astounding implications a while back.. huge potential.

            But sadly it would take a leap of faith to go there, and the so called ‘free market’ is far too risk-averse. It’s the sort of thing that some govt research insititute would need to take the initiative on and that’s exactly the sort of thing this govt doesn’t believe in.

  14. Whispers 15

    Yeah imac. I heard that in Wellington this morning but it is probably baseless. Unless of course the sight of Act crumbling is a worry that wanted the National Party to get stuck in against the trendy-wishy-washy lefties.
    I reckon Crusher Collins would be great. No nonsenseCollins. Yeah Collins would do it.

  15. Bruvver 16

    What crap you guys write. The idea of a change of National Leadership is not down for months yet and anyway it is not Collins you should be asking so get stuffed!

  16. burt 17

    Ok I know not a lot of people here don’t like the big blubbery sea mammal guy, but this is funny.

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  • Poroporoaki: Dr Hōhepa (Joe) Mason
    Ko koe tēnā e te hurumanu e Hōhepa, te tōwenetanga a te iti, te māpihi herenga mahara o te tini, ka tauawhi tonuhia koe e to iwi ki te uma pupuri ai. Me pēhea he kupu kia koutou kua puta i nga ākinga a nga tau kua hori, kua waia ...
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    3 hours ago
  • Finance Minister and RBNZ Governor agree to update MOU on macro-prudential policy
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr have updated the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on macro-prudential policy to further protect the financial system and support the Government’s housing objectives. “This change will ensure that the Reserve Bank has the flexibility to respond to emerging financial stability risks ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Government commits further assistance for drought and flood-affected rural communities
    Farmers and growers affected by this year’s drought or floods in Marlborough, Tasman, West Coat, Canterbury, Otago and the Chatham Islands will have access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPs) from today, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni has announced. “The Government is committed to easing the financial pressures on ...
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    19 hours ago
  • Cook Islands youth lead Language Week
    The Cook Islands Language Week theme for 2021 highlights the vital role language plays in maintaining young people’s links to their Pacific home, said Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio.  “The Epetoma o te reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani – Cook Islands Language Week – theme is ‘Ātuitui’ia au ki ...
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    21 hours ago
  • Government offers formal apology for Dawn Raids
    A formal and unreserved apology for the Dawn Raids The Government will offer education scholarships as part of the apology Manaaki New Zealand Short Term Scholarship Training courses Support Pacific artists and historians to develop a comprehensive written and oral account of the Dawn Raids Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to Dawn Raids Apology
    Tēnā koutou katoa, Kia orana kotou katoatoa, Fakaalofa lahi atu ki mutolu oti, Tālofa nī, Mālō nī koutou, Ni sa bula vinaka, Fakatalofa atu, Noa'ia 'e mauri, Kam na mauri, Malo e lelei, Sioto'ofa, Mālō lava le lagi e mamā ma le soifua maua, Oue tulou, tulou atu, tulouna lava ...
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    2 days ago
  • Bridging the gap – last piece of Northcote Safe Cycle Route now complete
    The opening of two bridges over Auckland’s Northern Motorway is the last link of a cycling and walking route which provides a safe, active alternative for students and commuters, Transport Minister Michael Wood said today. Michael Wood cut the ribbon for the completion of the Northcote Safe Cycle Route, at ...
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    2 days ago
  • Progress in establishment of Aged Care Commissioner
    Recruitment for an Aged Care Commissioner will start next month, to ensure greater oversight of New Zealand’s aged care sector. “This sector is responsible for supporting a large and often vulnerable population. While most people are able to access quality care, there have been cases where that care has fallen ...
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    3 days ago
  • New record number of homes consented
    In the year ended June 2021, the actual number of new dwellings consented was 44,299, up 18 percent from the June 2020 year. In June 2021, the seasonally adjusted number of new dwellings consented rose 3.8 percent. In June 2021, 4,310 new dwellings were consented, an increase of 3.8 per ...
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    4 days ago
  • Communities backed to tackle wilding pines
    Twelve community projects across New Zealand will receive a share of $2 million to carry out wilding pine control, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor announced as part of Biosecurity Week. “Wilding pines are a serious problem that threaten many of the unique landscapes that New Zealanders value. Community groups and trusts ...
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    4 days ago
  • Health Minister Andrew Little responding to the New Zealand Nurses Organisation's rejection of ...
    I was advised last night that the result of the ballot of Tōpūtanga Tapuhi Kaitiaki o Aotearoa New Zealand Nurses Organisation members have rejected the latest proposal to settle their collective agreement. Let me be clear: the proposal was one they put to the Government. The Nurses Organisation rejected their ...
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    4 days ago
  • Conversion Practices Prohibition Legislation introduced to Parliament
    Legislation has been introduced to Parliament to protect against practices intended to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. Introducing the Conversion Practices Prohibition Legislation Bill, Minister of Justice, Kris Faafoi, said the measures proposed were aimed at ending conversion practices which don’t work, are widely ...
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    4 days ago
  • New kaupapa Māori mental health and addiction services to support people in central North Island
    New mental health and addiction services rolling out across the central North Island will improve outcomes and equity for Māori, Associate Minister of Health (Māori Health) Peeni Henare says. Today the Minister met with providers of the new kaupapa Māori primary mental health and addiction service, Poutama Ora, which will ...
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    4 days ago
  • New school site for booming West Auckland
    The Government will build on a new school site in West Auckland to cope with rapid population growth in the area, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. The Ministry is working with existing local schools to determine how the 1.5-hectare site at 279 Hobsonville Point Road will be used to support ...
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    4 days ago
  • Trans-Tasman travel window to close at midnight tomorrow
    A further 500 MIQ rooms released for managed returnees from NSW Further Government actions announced today are balanced to provide more certainty for Kiwis wanting to return from Australia, while continuing to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, acting Minister for COVID-19 Response Ayesha Verrall says. The actions were foreshadowed last ...
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    5 days ago
  • Govt investing millions in Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti schools
    Napier Boys’ and Girls’ High Schools are among those set to benefit from a $16.5 million investment in the Hawke's Bay and Tairāwhiti region, Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash announced today. The Government has set aside money in Budget 2021 to accelerate five projects in Napier, Hastings, Havelock North ...
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    5 days ago
  • Game changing Jobs for Nature investment for Northland
    Conservation Minister Kiri Allan has announced Jobs for Nature funding for a portfolio of projects that will create ‘game changing’ gains for nature and communities across Northland/Te Tai Tokerau as part of the Government’s acceleration of the economic recovery from COVID. “This portfolio of 12 projects will see over $20 ...
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    5 days ago
  • Third COVID-19 vaccine receives provisional approval
    New Zealand’s regulatory authority Medsafe has granted provisional approval of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for individuals 18 years of age and older, Acting Minister for COVID-19 Response Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. New Zealand secured 7.6 million doses (enough for 3.8 million people) of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine through an ...
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    5 days ago
  • Bowel-cancer screening programme is saving lives
    More than 1000 New Zealanders have had bowel cancer – New Zealand’s second-most-common cause of death from cancer - detected under the Government’s National Bowel Screening Programme, Health Minister Andrew Little said today. More than 1200 New Zealanders died from bowel cancer in 2017. The screening programme aims to save ...
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    5 days ago
  • Govt welcomes draft report on the retail grocery sector
    The Commerce Commission’s draft report into the retail grocery sector is being welcomed by Government as a major milestone. “I asked the Commerce Commission to look at whether this sector is as competitive as it could be and today it has released its draft report for consultation,” Commerce and Consumer ...
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    5 days ago
  • Christchurch’s Youth Hub ‘set to go’ thanks to further Government funding
    Construction of New Zealand’s first, purpose-built centre for youth well-being is ready to get underway thanks to an extra $2.5 million of COVID-19 response funding, Housing Minister and Associate Minister of Finance, Megan Woods announced today.  “The Christchurch Youth Hub is about bringing together all the things young people need ...
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    5 days ago
  • Next step to protect Milford Sound Piopiotahi
    Expert group lays out plan to better protect iconic UNESCO World Heritage site Milford Sound Piopiotahi and its surrounds Funding confirmed for dedicated unit and Establishment Board to assess the recommendations and provide oversight of the process from here Milford Opportunities Project a test case for transformational change in tourism ...
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    6 days ago
  • Funding for projects to reduce waste from construction and demolition
    The Government has announced funding for projects in Auckland and the lower North Island to help reduce construction and demolition waste. “Construction is the main source of waste sent to landfill, and much of this could be reduced, reused and recovered,” Environment Minister David Parker said. “The Government is funding ...
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    6 days ago
  • Speech at the launch of the National Hepatitis C Action Plan
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Thank you Anglesea Pharmacy and Te Manawa Taki for hosting this event. As a doctor, I saw first hand the impact of hepatitis C. I met Moana in 2019; she came to the infectious diseases outpatient clinic at Wellington Hospital having tested positive for hepatitis C. Like ...
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    6 days ago
  • Plan to eliminate hepatitis C as a major health threat by 2030
    A plan to eliminate hepatitis C in New Zealand, reducing liver cancer and the need for liver transplants, has been released today by Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall. “Around 45,000 New Zealanders have hepatitis C, but only around half know they have it,” said Ayesha Verrall. “Symptoms often ...
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    6 days ago
  • School upgrades and new classrooms for West Coast, Tasman and Canterbury
    A funding injection from Budget 2021 to complete four shovel ready projects and new classrooms at six schools and kura will provide a real boost to local communities, Minister Dr Megan Woods announced today. “This Government has committed to providing quality fit for purpose learning environments and 100,000 new student ...
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    6 days ago
  • Warmer Kiwi Homes smashes annual target
    The Government's highly successful insulation and heating programme, Warmer Kiwi Homes, is celebrating a key milestone with the completion of more than 38,000 insulation and efficient heater installs in the year to the end of June, smashing its target of 25,000 installs for the year. “The Warmer Kiwi Homes scheme ...
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    7 days ago
  • Exemption granted for Wallabies to enter NZ
    Bledisloe Cup rugby will be played in New Zealand after the Australian rugby team received an economic exemption to enter New Zealand. Travel between Australia and New Zealand was suspended on Friday for at least eight weeks following the worsening of the COVID outbreak across the Tasman. New Zealanders have ...
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    7 days ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes three diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced three New Zealand Head of Mission appointments. They are: Mike Walsh as Ambassador to Iran Michael Upton as Ambassador to Ethiopia and the African Union Kevin Burnett as Ambassador to Indonesia Iran “Aotearoa New Zealand has a long-standing and constructive relationship with Iran, despite a ...
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    1 week ago
  • Enhanced Task Force Green Approved for West Coast and Marlborough
    The Government has activated Enhanced Task Force Green (ETFG) in response to the West Coast and Marlborough floods, Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “To assist with the clean-up, up to $500,000 will be made available to support the recovery in Buller and Marlborough which has experienced ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt support for upgrade of Eden Park players facilities
    Minister for Sport and Recreation Hon Grant Robertson has announced funding to upgrade the players facilities at Eden Park ahead of upcoming Women’s World Cup events. Eden Park is a confirmed venue for the Rugby World Cup 2021, the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022, and a proposed venue for matches of ...
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    1 week ago
  • More jobs and quicker public transport motoring towards West Auckland
    Work to improve public transport for West Aucklanders and support the region’s economic recovery by creating hundreds of jobs has officially kicked off, Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today. Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff this morning marked the start of construction on the Northwestern Bus Improvements project. It ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government backs critical health research
    Research into some of New Zealanders’ biggest health concerns including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease is getting crucial support in the latest round of health research funding, Health Minister Andrew Little announced today. The funding, awarded through the Health Research Council of New Zealand, covers 31 General Project grants ($36.64 ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Bay of Islands hospital facilities to bring services closer to home
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Andrew Little have joined a ceremony to bless the site and workers for Phase Two of the redevelopment of the Bay of Islands Hospital in Kawakawa today. The new building will house outpatients and primary care facilities, as well as expanded renal care ...
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    1 week ago
  • Raukokore re-imagined with ‘smart’ relocatable rent to own housing
    Iwi, Crown Partnership Relocatable, fully insulated housing, connected to a new solar plant Provides a pathway to home ownership New housing in the remote eastern Bay of Plenty community of Raukokore shows how iwi and Crown agencies can work together effectively to provide warm, dry, energy efficient homes in a ...
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    1 week ago
  • Cabinet accepts Turkish authorities’ request for the managed return of three NZ citizens
    Cabinet has agreed to the managed return of a New Zealand citizen and her two young children from Turkey, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The three have been in immigration detention in Turkey since crossing the border from Syria earlier this year. Turkey has requested that New Zealand repatriate ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt delivers more classrooms so children can focus on learning
    Extra Government investment in classrooms and school building projects will enable students and teachers to focus on education rather than overcrowding as school rolls grow across the country, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis say. The pair visited Ruakākā School in Whangārei today to announce $100 ...
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    1 week ago
  • New station a platform for AirportLink to take off
    Every Aucklander with access to the rail network will now have a quick and convenient trip to the airport, Transport Minister Michael Wood and Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said during the official opening of the new Puhinui Interchange today. The new interchange links the rail platform with a new bus ...
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    1 week ago
  • 10 days sick leave for employees delivered
    Legislation doubling employees’ minimum sick leave entitlement to 10 days comes into effect today, bringing benefits to both businesses and employees, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Michael Wood announced today. “Our Government is delivering on a key manifesto commitment to help Kiwis and workplaces stay healthy,” Michael Wood said. “COVID-19 ...
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on Election Win
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern tonight congratulated Prime Minister-elect Fiame Naomi Mata’afa on her victory in the Samoa’s general election. “New Zealand has a special relationship with Samoa, anchored in the Treaty of Friendship. We look forward to working with Samoa’s new government in the spirit of partnership that characterises this ...
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    2 weeks ago