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Open mike 02/06/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 2nd, 2013 - 126 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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

Step right up to the mike…

126 comments on “Open mike 02/06/2013 ”

  1. Boadicea 1

    Tory immunity to facts will not make them disappear.

    “They come from Oxfam, Unicef, Rights Advice Scotland, the British Medical Association, the Welfare Reform Committee of the Holyrood Parliament and many more besides. They have two things in common.

    First, they demonstrate, time and again, that the destruction of social security provision in Britain is having a cataclysmic effect, hitting the poorest communities first and vulnerable people hardest. There are statistics, tables and charts enough to satisfy any sceptic’s demand for evidence.

    Second, each of these documents is born of a strange, indignant naivety. The writers and researchers cling to the belief that if only Government could be made to address mountains of evidence, understanding would dawn. Facts, datasets, unimpeachable methodology, objective truths: who could ignore reports from reality?”

    Read the rest of this article by Ian Bell in the Herald Scotland. It could just as well have been written for a New Zealand context.


  2. There are genuine heroes in this country and I rate John Minto at the very top of that list

    Wage and salary earners pay tax on every dollar we earn and every dollar we spend but these layabouts hide their money in trusts, overseas bank accounts and tax havens of all kinds and leave the rest of us to keep the country running. Most of them have never done an honest day’s work in their lives. Miserable pricks.


    He just hits the nails on the head every single time. Kia kaha John and the Mana Movement.

    • Morrissey 2.1

      John Minto is a genuine Kiwi hero.

    • Saarbo 2.2


    • bad12 2.3

      John Minto giving a perfect description of National’s Simon Lusk perhaps ???, mind you Slippery the PM appears to fit well within Minto’s short analysis of the speculative capitalists…

  3. Alanz 3


    “Conservation spokeswoman Eugenie Sage and climate change spokesman Kennedy Graham were both considered “safe” Green MPs, but some within Labour doubted whether they had the profile to be Cabinet Ministers.” [http://www.nzherald.co./nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10887884]

    Some within Labour doubted??

    Come on, let’s be brutally honest – both Kennedy Graham and Eugenie Sage would easily and undoubtedly clear the line for Cabinet Minister if the benchmark is Shearer has the profile to be PM.

    • Naturesong 3.1

      Likely scared.

      The competence level of Green mp’s is on average far above all the other parties. Which makes sense, only the top 14 are in parliament.

      If you are making a list of people ready for a cabinet, Julie Anne Genter would be my first pick after Dr Norman.

      Bloody foreigners coming over here and taking our jobs. /shakes fist

  4. AsleepWhileWalking 4

    John Key.
    “..he’s not smiling because he likes you..”

    Words to live by.

    Someone make a meme!

  5. Saarbo 5

    Wow, just watched the Q&A interview of Metiria Turei, she is outstanding. What a great team Turei and Norman.

    The Green Party is on a roll, they are the best thing that has happened in New Zealand politics in a long time. Their timing in attacking National is perfect, people are sick of what National are doing and the MSM are providing them with a free reign. The Greens are showing that they are tough, ruthless and strongly principled.

    I’m picking 18% to 20% in 2014, some coming from female voters who voted National in 2011, but most coming from traditional Labour voters.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 5.1

      Really loving the way they are handling themselves and the media. Marama Davidson running in Ikaroa-Rāwhiti for the Greens – it’s a great line up going into 2014.

    • Molly Polly 5.2

      Agreed Saarbo. Metiria is outstanding. She is warm, speaks with clarity and shows empathy, commonsense, strength, and vision.

      This long time Labour member has made the switch.

      May not have if David Cunliffe had become the Labour leader after the last election. But we were never given the chance to see what a difference he could have made (similar qualities to those of Metiria.) My guess is he would have been on fire against this despicable government from the get go…and inspired a whole nation in the process. The political landscape would now be a lot different.

      But it didn’t happen…and to boot he was sent to Coventry.

      Labour’s loss – Green’s gain.

      Go Russell and Metiria. I can’t wait to see you and your principled team part of the next government.

      • bad12 5.2.1

        Indeed, i met Metiria and Her Sis a lifetime ago and way back then just ‘knew’ that one or the other, (or both), were going places,

        Not places dictated by naked ambition but places dictated by the need to make the necessary changes no matter what it cost or how long it took,

        A heart of gold and a backbone of steel, i near fell off my seat laughing when prior to the 2011 election Metiria took apart the Education Minister with a 30 second burst in a RadioNZ National debate that would have stripped paint and certainly shut the babbling mouth of Ann Tolley who sat through the remainder of the discussion in what i can only infer was shocked silence…

      • David H 5.2.2

        I agree with everything you have said. I also switched when we were shat upon by the dinosaurs in charge of the Labour party.

    • Lanthanide 5.3

      Maybe 14-17% at the outside, I think.

      • Colonial Viper 5.3.1

        I think your est. is about right, Lanth.

        There are huge downsides for the Greens if they were to hit 20% – growing unsustainably fast has many dangers for a political party which needs to continue to develop it’s own institutional structures and processes.

        Gaining another 4-5 MPs however is probably exactly what the Greens need to keep on track (to become NZ’s dominant left wing party).

        • Lanthanide

          I think once the Greens get into government, they’ll either surge ahead in popularity, or drop back, but they won’t stay at their mid-teens level once they get a chance to show their mettle.

          I’m picking surge ahead, taken mainly from Labour but also a bit from National. 2017 could end up seeing them as almost-equals with Labour.

          • Furrball

            I think political parties tend to lose popularity — whether slowly or quickly — once in power, when the compromises of wielding power are laid bare and grand plans suffer when they come into contact with the civil service, the media, the judiciary and other institutions, let alone the public.

            Campaigning is far easier than governing.

    • muzza 5.4

      Bit of a rock and hard place for people, I guess.

      So desperate for signs of positivity, that the manufactured rise of the Greens is being cheered on.

      People need to be weary of anything/anyone, coming from inside the existing system, these are not organic creations.

      Perhaps read some policy, then look at what political parties do to those policies, once they are part of a government. Lies, lies and more lies, followed by *new polciy*, which not not part of any manefesto, pre elections.
      People on this site need to understand more about economics/finance reality, before backing any party, understand the reality. Yes Norman has referenced *printing money*, but he is talking crap, it will not be done, or it would have by now.

      Should The Greens form a government, they will be bound by the same constraints as any other part, beholden to the global institutions, thats assuming Norman is not the Green equivalent of David Shearer, which IMO, he is!

      Someone argue otherwise, please go ahead and give it a crack!

      • AsleepWhileWalking 5.4.1

        Norman is nothing like Shearer.
        Norman has an elegance about him, Shearer comes across awkward
        Norman articulates his argument, Shearer is inconsistent
        Norman’s identity alines closely with his party val. Shearer at times does the opposite (esp. welfare)

        As for the rest of your argument I’d be surprised if you voted at all given your underlying belief that the system we have is inherently flawed.

        • muzza

          Shearer is in place for a reason, Norman, is also there for a reason…

          Neither of them, to benefit NZ or its people!

          Do you believe that having a vote, has made any meaningful change, under the neoliberal agenda of the past 40+ years?

          Do you believe that a party inside the current parliamentary system, is going to defend NZ against the owners of the neoliberal agenda?

          • Matt

            “…the owners of the neoliberal agenda?”

            I was thinking of buying Coca Cola shares, but this neoliberal agenda sounds even better. Do they have a prospectus?

            Greens/Labour and Norman/Shearer strike me as very unlike each other. It was well summarized above that Norman has an argument and articulates it. Shearer doesn’t and doesn’t. You could extrapolate from that to their respective parties and not be too far off base.

            There is a lot of hand-wringing about what Labour has to do to explain what they stand for, but it seems like the best first step would be to, you know, stand for something.

          • weka

            “Do you believe that a party inside the current parliamentary system, is going to defend NZ against the owners of the neoliberal agenda?”

            Yes. I trust Norman, Turei and the GP to do this to the best of their ability within the constraints of the system.

            I don’t expect miracles though. I’m not sure what you are doing running this line that no party can do anything good. The GP aren’t responsible for overthrowing neoliberalism, but they can definitely hold the line for a while. At the very least they will be a positive force in some areas instead of the overwhelmingly negative force of Key Inc.

            “Do you believe that having a vote, has made any meaningful change, under the neoliberal agenda of the past 40+ years?”

            Yes. We got MMP. We were better off having the Clark govt than another 2 terms of the 90s Nats.

        • Populuxe1

          “Norman has an elegance about him…”
          Hmmmm. Let me refresh your memory

          • Colonial Viper

            Just the rashness of younger days my man

          • Morrissey

            Hmmmm. Let me refresh your memory

            That’s interesting. A New Zealand politician actually has the integrity and the courage to protest against our government cozying up to a brutal regime, and is attacked by foreign goons ON THE GROUNDS OF OUR PARLIAMENT—and your reaction is to pour scorn on him.

            I am not surprised, not in the slightest. That you side with the Chinese regime even as its thugs attack a New Zealand MP in the grounds of the New Zealand parliament is exactly what I would have predicted.

            I just never thought you would be so foolish as to openly publish it.

            • Populuxe1

              How is that siding with the “Chinese regime”, fool?
              More to the point, how can a Member of the New Zealand Parliament be so lacking in gravitas and standing as to make a mockery of our sovereignty by getting himself manhandled by a foreign dignitary’s security detail?

              • Colonial Viper

                Interesting how you blame our own elected NZ MP, and not the Chinese security officers.

              • Morrissey

                How is that siding with the “Chinese regime”, fool?

                Even considering the fact you are not serious, that is a particularly crass reply.

                ….how can a Member of the New Zealand Parliament be so lacking in gravitas and standing as to make a mockery of our sovereignty by getting himself manhandled by a foreign dignitary’s security detail?

                You have no idea about, and no respect for, the concept of democracy. No wonder you scorn protestors and, yes, side with the Chinese regime.

                By the way, THIS is a New Zealand MP who lacks in gravitas and standing….

                View post on imgur.com

      • bad12 5.4.2

        Interesting!!!, in 2009 the IMF in it’s interim report to the incoming National Government made a point, (at paragraph 15 if my memory serves me right), that the incoming government should seriously consider quantitative easing, *printing money*, as opposed to borrowing the 80 billion dollars it has up to this point accumulated as the actual cost to New Zealand of this particular regime,

        Interim reports from the IMF are of course referred to Governments for comment and a negotiation of what is compiles as the final report then takes place, the final report issued early in 2009 made no mention of *printing money* and it is obvious that the present Government had this section edited from the interim report in it’s negotiations with the IMF over what the final IMF report to the incoming Government would recommend,

        That interim IMF report to the incoming National Government disappeared soon after i began highlighting it’s contents on another website and my mistake was to not access a printer and make a hard copy of it,

        Obviously the actions of this National Government in the past two terms have negated the advice from the IMF that the Government print the monies necessary to cover it’s ”losses” as a result of the Global Financial Crisis instead opting for that 80 billion dollars of debt,

        Given the above it would seem that Dr Norman was at the time calling for the printing of money by the Government from a point of the current financial orthodoxy and it is not Dr Norman proposing some form of ‘voodoo economics’ but yourself, Bill English and John Key who have their heads buried in the sand or in the s**t in the case of the latter two…

        • muzza

          I’m well aware of the IMF reports which come out including the one you mention, and being in opposition, as I noted yesterday in a comment, is a very easy place to make loud noises from (unless you’re David Shearer).

          IMF, WB UNESCO et al, the globalist enterprises, pump out these papers/reports on a regular basis, and they are not worth the paper they are printed on!

          Who do you believe the IMF to be, some altuistic establishment?

          Why is the RBNZ Govenor, ex long time World Bank MD, who is named in corruption goings on by Karen Hudes?

          Conditionalities Policies – Since 1961

          • bad12

            Who i believe the IMF to be is irrelevant to this discussion, i am simply pointing out to you that ‘crap’ as you ascribe to Dr Norman was at the time the Dr was calling for the Government to *print money* instead of borrowing it the prevailing financial orthodoxy,

            Your insinuation that the Green Party is some form of ‘plant’ in a conspiracy is what i consider to be the only ‘crap’ being spread here,

            Your petty allegations are laughable and ill considered and the sum total of your beliefs seems to encompass a ‘they are all corrupt don’t vote for any of them’ underlying motive…

            • muzza

              My contention was, as per the example I gave from a post yesterday, is that its very easy to make the right noises, when you’re not even an official govt opposition..

              Russel has nothing to lose by repeating the *money printing* diatribe, which would be a far cry from what he would do, should he get near enough to the treasury strings to enact such a policy. To believe Norman would enact such a policy, of his own accord, is simply utter crap, he will do, only what he is told, within the narrow parameters that those who dictate to NZ, will allow!

              Tell me all about Russel Norman then, tell me why I should believe his alleged back story, anymore than I believe Shearers , makes him anything other an a plant, put in place to do/say nothing *controversial*, let alone attack the governments continued failures.

              Instead there is Norman, as a pseudo opposition leader and *spokesman*, how very convenient!

              • bad12

                Yawn you start today’s diatribe with a wish that readers and commentors here at the Standard had some understanding of fiscal matters and it would seem vis a vis the ‘crap’ comment you point in Dr Norman’s direction you in particular target the Green party,

                When i point out to you that Norman was in tune with what all the major economy’s, (except the Chinese who have plenty of the filthy lucre and therefor have no need), along with the IMF advice in His comments over ‘quantitative easing’ you retreat to making a series of baseless, unfounded allegations about the Co-Leader of the Green Party,

                i don’t propose to tell you shit about Dr Norman and if you have any specific allegation to make about Him i suggest you do so providing a modicum of proof otherwise you run the risk in spreading such baseless allegations of looking as if you are simply shit-stirring in an effort to cover up your lite-weight knowledge of the economic situation,

                i will tho point out that Dr Norman when He proposes the printing of money is diametrically in opposition to not only National but Labour as well who have no such fiscal policy instead adhering to the ‘borrowing option’,

                If what i see occurring after November 2014, or November 2017 is to become in fact the reality with the Government’s fiscal position then i believe at that point Labour may have to reconsider it’s fiscal policy…

                • Colonial Viper

                  When i point out to you that Norman was in tune with what all the major economy’s, (except the Chinese who have plenty of the filthy lucre and therefor have no need)

                  Uh, the Chinese banks are likely sitting on a sky high mountain of bad debts and bad mortgages.

                  Once you take into account the massive amount of NPLs and the need to recapitalise the Chinese banks…I think you’ll find that China has fuck all money left over. And I think that the Chinese leadership know it, but are keeping a very straight poker face.

                  • bad12

                    CV, you may or may not be right in your analysis of the unstated Chinese fiscal position but from an orthodox position it is what the figures say it is,

                    Perhaps i should have alluded to such in my comment but giving the persona i am at present debating with chances at diverting from the central issue of debate would simply have him/her play tic tac toe with me changing the subject materially with every comment…

                • muzza

                  Yawn you start today’s diatribe with a wish that readers and commentors here at the Standard had some understanding of fiscal matters and it would seem vis a vis the ‘crap’ comment you point in Dr Norman’s direction you in particular target the Green party,

                  What are you yawning at? And yes many here do not even understand basic financial/economic concepts, which leads to most threads being little more than a running commentary of the decline in, NZ inc!

                  When i point out to you that Norman was in tune with what all the major economy’s, (except the Chinese who have plenty of the filthy lucre and therefor have no need), along with the IMF advice in His comments over ‘quantitative easing’ you retreat to making a series of baseless, unfounded allegations about the Co-Leader of the Green Party

                  Retreat – Nah, you’re pretending you knew what my original comments position was, you interpreted it incorrectly, I explained again, you don’t accept it, too bad12!

                  The below is something for you to look further at:

                  The NZ Reserve Bank act, effectively separated the elected NZ government from the right to print our own money. The RBNZ is run by unelected individuals, and has responsibility to the crown, which most people interpret to be the NZ government.

                  Bit defensive, yet attacking all in the same space, B12 – What’s the reason for that bro?

                  • bad12

                    The only thing i can say about your latest attempt = are you pissed or somehow suffering under an altered mental state,

                    As debate that scores a zero on my register and is hardly worth answering, you make allegations about Dr Norman in particular, when called upon to provide facts you provide nothing,

                    Your latest little attempt at side-tracking the debate away from the unfounded accusations you make against Dr Norman simply moves you further into the realm of ‘tin foil hat wearing conspiracy theorist’,

                    And what you trot out as something ‘i should take a look at’ is simply laughable, Crown when such language is used in official speak is simply the NZ Government and your alluding to this particular passage from an act shows your abject lack of intellect,

                    It is Governments who appoint the Governor of the Reserve Bank and if any future Government had no faith in a particular governor to carry out that Governments fiscal policies i am sure they would force His/Her resignation,

                    As far as the Reserve Bank legislation removing from a Government the ability to ‘print money’ aaah derrrr any Government can choose to change any legislation any time it so wishes….

                    • muzza

                      Dr Norman, lol, wait on, can you get his balls in your mouth too…

                      You got all heated up, over my saying, IMO, Norman, is talking crap, while in a position of ZERO influence!

                      Go read up on the Reserve Bank Act (RBNZ/OoDM), and *The Crown*, then you might have something to contribute to a conversation around such subject matter.

      • Murray Olsen 5.4.3

        “Yes Norman has referenced *printing money*, but he is talking crap, it will not be done, or it would have by now.”

        Are you saying that QE isn’t in use anywhere on the planet?

        • Colonial Viper

          It’s weird how the RWNJs ignore the massive increases in global M1, M2 and M3. Where do they think that money is coming from, if not printed ex nihilo?

        • muzza

          No Murray, that’s not what I’m saying!

          Norman is talking crap, because, even if he had the opportunity to influence/alter NZ Monetary Policy, he would do NO such thing! If it were going to be done (in NZ), it would have by now!

          That is what I was saying!

          Trust you have been putting the geo-engineering links to good use, I can’t be feeding it to you on a plate , continually Murray!

          Hope you’re well!

          • Colonial Viper

            Norman is talking crap, because, even if he had the opportunity to influence/alter NZ Monetary Policy, he would do NO such thing! If it were going to be done (in NZ), it would have by now!

            Why would it have been done any time in the last 20 years?

          • Murray Olsen

            The best use for those links was to close them and forget about them. I already replied to you about them.

            • muzza

              Didn’t see the reply, I don’t care to receive response notifications, so if I don;t catch the response, then its unlikely I ever will.

              Why would you forget about geo-engineering Murray?

              As a PhD, I would have thought you might want to investigate, what gives?

              • Murray Olsen

                If you want me to investigate something for you, it’s $300/hr. Otherwise, get your own PhD and go for it.

                • muzza

                  Murray, with respect, there is no need to entertain the notion of paying someone to do research on behalf, so I’ll take your comment as facetious.

                  Progression of understanding, should never stop, age nor health should interfere in life learning’s. If you’re well enough to post here, you’re well enough to do some reading.

                  Don’t let that PhD become a barrier to cogent awareness, which your automatic reaction, might be to see a subject matter, under a preconceived judgment set.

                  Go well…

                  • Murray Olsen

                    I am well enough to decide what I’ll do with my time. It won’t include taking suggestions from a conspiracy theorist who has mastered the correct usage of neither the comma nor the apostrophe. You’re coming across as a creepy bloody stalker. I don’t care what youtube videos you watch, how many copies of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion you have, or what you think is happening in the world. I have no interest in your suggestions for reading material, nor do I wish to suscribe to your hopeless nightmare of a world run by hidden dark forces about which we can do nothing. You’re welcome to it, but your philosophy is not one which changes the world in the slightest. It’s the philosophy of the helpless victim who can always find an excuse to do nothing, the paranoid sufferer who locks themselves in their room in the foetal position, hoping that the Illuminati will not enter.

                    Not interested, thanks. I’m interested in fighting back and changing things. We’re on opposite sides.

                    • muzza

                      I am well enough to decide what I’ll do with my time. It won’t include taking suggestions from a conspiracy theorist who has mastered the correct usage of neither the comma nor the apostrophe.

                      Thanks for illustrating my assertion about preconception, Murray, well done! You realize that that your reference to grammatical correctness, is reserved for when someone has nothing else to offer, perhaps not!

                      You’re coming across as a creepy bloody stalker.

                      And yet, its you, who has been responding to my posts, Murray, not to mention, your request for links on the subject, which I provided (see reminder, a little down in my rebuttal)

                      I don’t care what youtube videos you watch, how many copies of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion you have, or what you think is happening in the world. I have no interest in your suggestions for reading material, nor do I wish to subscribe to your hopeless nightmare of a world run by hidden dark forces about which we can do nothing.

                      Never read the protocols, Murray, and nice attempted fob off, vis a vis, youtube. As you should appreciate, knowledge that can be gained from any medium, but again, its good of you to show what preconception bias, Murray.

                      Understanding on the other hand, requires emotional intelligence, which can’t learnt from a book, or a video, or anything other than life itself, most don’t learn to understand, ever!

                      You’re welcome to it, but your philosophy is not one which changes the world in the slightest. It’s the philosophy of the helpless victim who can always find an excuse to do nothing, the paranoid sufferer who locks themselves in their room in the foetal position, hoping that the Illuminati will not enter.

                      I’m up for joining dots, let’s see. Your position, is that geo-engineering, and the chem-trails discussion, are one and the same, and having conflated, decided there is nothing you can, or are prepared to invest in understanding it, even after you asked me for some links, to get you started a couple of weeks back, to you remember that, Murray?

                      Murray, what’s concerning, yet enlightening at the same time, is how you’ve taken the legitimate subject of geo-engineering, then twisted it inside your prejudice, and come up with the protocols of Zion, and the Illuminati, which is frankly a rather naked insight, to where your minds at. Suggest you leave the online psychological evaluations aside, they require understanding, among other traits, and you have no lucky strike of understanding what my *philosophy* is, not with the barriers/blockers, and outright confusion you have shared in the comments, I’m responding to here!

                      Not interested, thanks. I’m interested in fighting back and changing things. We’re on opposite sides.

                      With you there, Murray, not so opposite in fact, but we won’t find much inspiration or fight via this site, however you will find plenty who share your interest in grammatical pedantry, and childish, fob off insults, which is not really adding much in terms of fight , is it!

                      All the best…

  6. Morrissey 6

    Humbug Corner

    One of those godawful judges has just spoken harshly about the performance of a contestant. The young man shuffles off the stage for the obligatory post-humiliation interview…

    Rejected contestant: It was so hard hearing that. It was just, uh… [starts to whimper] … yeah.
    Dominic Bowden: [softly, with Clintonian empathy] It’s okay to be speechless.

    The X-Factor, TV3, Sunday 19 May 2013

    Humbug Corner is dedicated to gathering, and highlighting, the most striking examples of faux solicitude, insincere apologies, and particularly stupid recycling of official canards.

    It is produced by the Insincerity Project®, a division of Daisycutter Sports Inc.

    • Populuxe1 6.1

      You darned kids gett offa my lawn! *impotently shakes fist*

      • Morrissey 6.1.1

        You darned kids gett offa my lawn! *impotently shakes fist*

        The implication being, I take it, that if one is not impressed by this awful, awful show and its depressing parade of mediocrity, then one is not “down with the kids.”

        That’s a bit depressing.

        NOTE TO SELF:
        Need to get hip somehow, and fast…

        • felix

          Weird implication for Pop to make about such a flacid, pedestrian form of entertainment. But then I’m not totally convinced that Pop reads the comments he replies to.

        • Populuxe1

          No, but your constant complaining about it like, to paraphrase Leviticus, a dog returning to it’s own vomit, does mark you out as one of those cartoonish old farts with too much time on their hands and who likes easy targets to moan about.

          • felix

            lol @ dog vomit reference. But Moz has to keep returning. He sniffs the vomit so you don’t have to 😉

            • ghostrider888

              that is funny felix. still “there is something rotten in the beehive”.

  7. Morrissey 7

    No. 16: Phil Kafcaloudes

    “The Opposition leader Tony Abbott, who hasn’t made any mistakes over the past eighteen months…”

    —-Phil Kafcaloudes, Radio NZ National Australian correspondent, 8:59 a.m., Friday 31 May 2013

    See also….
    No. 15: Donald Rumsfeld: “I did not lie… Colin Powell did not lie.”
    No. 14: Colin Powell: “a post-9/11 nexus between Iraq and terrorist organizations…connections are now emerging…”
    No.13: Barack Obama: “Simply put, these strikes have saved lives.”

    Open mike 27/05/2013

    No. 12: U.K. Ministry of Defence: “Protecting the Afghan civilian population is one of ISAF and the UK’s top priorities.”
    No. 11: Brendan O’Connor: “Australia’s approach to refugees is compassionate and generous.”
    No. 10: Boris Johnson: “Londoners have… the best police in the world to look after us and keep us safe.”
    No. 9: NewstalkZB PR dept: “News you NEED! Fast, fair, accurate!”
    No. 8: Simon Bridges: “I don’t mean to duck the question”
    No. 7: Nigel Morrison: “Quite frankly, they’ve been VERY tough.”
No. 6: NZ Herald PR dept: “Congratulations—you’re reading New Zealand’s best newspaper.”

No. 5: Rawdon Christie: “…a FORMIDABLE replacement, it seems, is Claudette Hauiti.”

    No. 4: Willie and J.T.: “The X-Factor. Nah, nah, there’s some GREAT talent there!”

    No. 3: John Key: “Yeah we hold MPs to a higher standard.”
No. 2: Colin Craig: “Oh, I have a GREAT sense of humour.”
No. 1: Barack Obama: “Margaret Thatcher was one of the great champions of freedom and liberty.”

  8. SukieDamson 8

    This week’s KAL’s cartoon http://t.co/bMa9AbwDps

    • ianmac 8.1

      I guess it is part of the necessary training for leaders to practise keeping a straight face or at least smile at hypocrisy.

  9. Jenny 9

    From the office of the Race Relations Commissioner:

    Racism is OK as no long as no property gets damaged.

    To get her to act against the Jim Crow humour of Nisbet. Susan Devoy says People will have to riot.

    She should be charged with inciting.

    Let hope it never comes to that.

    I thought the whole point of having a Race Relations Commissioner was to prevent things getting to that stage.

    Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy says cartoons printed in Fairfax Media newspapers in response to the Government’s food in schools plan were offensive, but not legally racist.

    But when asked what the threshold for racism was, Dame Susan had to consult her advisor – eventually saying the cartoons would “have to incite riot”.


    Going by this logic, there could be protests in every street of the country against her lack of action against racism. But unless, at least one of these protests degenerated into a riot, Susan Devoy will not act.

    Susan Devoy has turned the whole concept of Race Relations Commissioner on its head.

    • Populuxe1 9.1

      “But unless, at least one of these protests degenerated into a riot, Susan Devoy will not act.”

      I’m not sure what you expect Dame Susan of Squash to do exactly. The Race Relations Commissioner has no powers to do anything except tut tut and give the occasional moue of distaste. You should be moaning about the Human Rights Tribunal.

  10. Lanthanide 10

    Heard a clip of Dunne last night on the radio, saying they’d had 60 brand new membership applications for United Future after news of their de-registration broke.

    Sounds like they won’t be de-registered for long.

    • logie97 10.1

      … probably Nats in Ohariu.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.2

      So that would bring them up to 62 once you count in Pete George and Peter Dunne?

    • lprent 10.3

      Yeah, almost worth while doing the dodgy name/address/age thing that the Nats did on the asset sale referendum. The embarrassment of being rejected again…

      But remember, as Lyn frequently reminds me :- a vote for united future is a vote for Peter Dunne’s hairpiece…

      That is one piece of bouf that simply won’t lie down

  11. logie97 11

    Susan Woods calls it again in one of those off the cuff comments

    Today on Q+A the panel discussing the “Right’s” candidate in upcoming Auckland election needs to be a high profile figure, to which her contribution was if only Paul Holmes …

    And of course that raises another issue.
    The question of Shane Taurima being able to return to political broadcasting given that he has now attempted to become a Labour member of parliament.

    It would seem that it is alright for the right to have their stooges in broadcasting, but the left not.

    • North 11.1

      As in the case of the contemptibly hectoring bully-rightist Paul Henry. Who prior to his fabulously paid obscenity gigs on New Zealand television unsuccessfully stood for National in the Wairarapa electorate against Labour’s Georgina Beyer.

      On a slightly tangential tack I still laugh when I recall the reported heads-in-hands despair at National Party headquarters when on the Thursday prior to the Saturday election Paullie came out with this howler – ” At least I’m a real man……! ”

      Such licence so deceptively deployed Paullie !

      • Murray Olsen 11.1.1

        Paul Henry – just like a real man, but smaller. In mind, heart, body, and soul.

  12. just saying 12


    Puddleglum on poverty. Highly recommended.

    And out of public discourse has vanished any attempt to understand how the wrecking ball of economic reform in New Zealand has sent chaotic repercussing waves of dysfunction out into the future through the inevitable cascade of individual, small but tragic events it has generated in the daily lives and experiences of so many New Zealanders over the past 30 years.

    Instead, we hear expressions of magical thinking as a substitute for understanding. A seemingly endless stream of spittle-flecked talk of poor people’s poor ‘choices’, poor parenting and poor ‘attitude’ becomes the sickening bully pulpit pontification of workplace chattering and columnists’ commentary. Intellectual pap replaces analysis; an ignorant sledgehammer – oxymoronically called ‘common sense’ – is used, zombie-like, to batter those least able to defend themselves.

    Listening to the cliched arguments about the poor and beneficiaries that seem to garner such popular support, it’s hard not to despair. How did hard-hearted cliche come to be so popular? How has this mythology about the causes of poverty arisen?

    I’ve just finished ‘The ‘Chavs’ and ‘Deer Hunting with Jesus’, Puddleglum, and I’m looking forward to your book 🙂

    • prism 12.1

      Listening to the cliched arguments about the poor and beneficiaries that seem to garner such popular support, it’s hard not to despair. How did hard-hearted cliche come to be so popular? How has this mythology about the causes of poverty arisen?

      It appears that the whole fabric of our understanding of our values, of NZs attitudes of goodwill to their countrymen and women and love of egalitarianism, along with our happy Maori and good interracial relationships, is a fog of camouflage that hid the fact that this was a minority belief. It’s heart rending to realise that many NZs particularly among st the older age group, don’t care to retain those values that we thought we held firmly.

    • ghostrider888 12.2

      Puddleglum is deep.

  13. prism 13

    Chicago Mayor has sold the rights to the city’s parking for 75 years for $1 billion lump payment. There is no free parking in weekends, problems about disabled, and threats of suing the Council for loss of potential profit if some parking meters not operating. The city is bound by the contract to pay up large amounts over the years to this parking owner.

    What the hell. How can we let these temporary caretaker politicians destroy our living standards, rob us of our amenities for their own purposes. And you can bet there was something in it for the Mayor and his mates even if there was a few million sprinkled here and there on city projects.

    Perhaps the piece below answers my question. Mayor Daley has got up daily without fear of much scrutiny or bad reaction by the public. I hate that saying that we get the outcomes that we deserve because of our laxness but it seems to apply. We shouldn’t have to be alert watchdogs preparing to have a bite worse than our bark but it seems if we aren’t we won’t have anything in our yard left to protect.

    The origins of the meter debacle actually date back to 2005, when Mayor Daley began selling off public property for up-front cash payments without much scrutiny from the City Council or the public. Then last year, when tax revenues plummeted, the mayor increased the pressure, directing his staff to be “creative” in attacking budget problems. But even as city officials celebrated privatization agreements for Midway Airport and the meters, both worth billions of dollars, they refused to release the most basic information about how they’d been reached

    • AsleepWhileWalking 13.1

      Thanks for the link – it’s a shocker and a must read for anyone who is concerned about sale of public assets, or is a current supporter of such.

    • muzza 13.2

      Good link Prism, thanks.

      Witness the pressure raised on Christchurch to sell assets to part fund a re-built etc, and one example.

      Councils around NZ are in debt, the country, is in debt – The books are closed, the assets already being positioned, and the trigger will be pulled by the ratings agencies!

    • Draco T Bastard 13.3

      We shouldn’t have to be alert watchdogs preparing to have a bite worse than our bark…

      Wrong. That’s exactly what we should be doing everyday and we need to be willing and able to remove the politicians that do make us worse off.

    • Colonial Viper 13.4

      Selling off public revenue streams to private interests. Sounds about right.

      edit – interesting that Mayor Rahm Emanuel was Democratic President Obama’s Chief of Staff. To be honest, the “left wing” in the USA is more like ACT on steroids.

      • millsy 13.4.1

        The Obama administration has floated the possible sale of the Tennessee Valley Authority in its 2013/14 budget.

  14. Molly 14

    (Thought about putting this in the Lusk paper comments, but I can’t vouch for credibility only posting as something that may be interesting)

    A red herring most likely, but reading Lusk’s paper made me recall a notice sent round the homeschooling loops a few years back (2009) – which I quickly deleted – we tend to get a lot of irrelevant messages.

    So I googled and came up with this: Cult Education page from the US which looked familiar, and seems to be the one that I had received:

    I’m writing to you today to notify you that a group of aberrant evangelical Protestant Christian Reconstructionists plans an exodus from the United States to New Zealand in 2010, establishing themselves through the unsuspecting homeschooling community in NZ. I’m not sure how many Vision Forum affiliated families plan on following the family of the US born and reported NZ immigrant Geoffrey Botkin next year.

    Reading it now, it strikes me that over the last couple of years I can think of at least two families that have moved over from the states that are incredibly right-wing, fundamentalist in their thinking (and I don’t get around much in the religious group of homeschoolers) and have heard of others causing difficulties in other homeschooling support groups.

    Geoff Botkin boasts plans to have his son, now in his 20s, elected as the Prime Minister of NZ when he his 57. To be honest, read that with the same degree of WTF that I read the rest.

    In conjunction with this, I also recently complained to our National Council for allowing religious messages Creating a God-Centred family – workshop by to be sent via the secular NCHENZ message loop.

    Decided to give the two seconds required to google the advertised speakers with Geoff Botkin mentioned above, and they seem to be well acquainted.

    In summary:
    – a message on the homeschool loops in 2009 which was tl;dr
    – recalled that message after reading Lusks amateur leaked documents
    – was able to google that message and read again, which now sounds more credible given some of the recent US families that have moved to NZ, and the workshops that have been offered by the christian support groups in the last couple of years
    – found links between the person named in the original (2009) email and those currently doing the rounds within the christian homeschooling groups.

    If any of the original email is true, then imagine if this group aligns with funding a hard-right wing conservative government. The families I have had direct contact with seemed to be middle class, but would also be quite likely to give a significant portion of their income to their church (which may end up including a political lobby group).

    …as mentioned, only posting due to a series of “coincidental clicks”… but does make me wish that there was a group left-wing, secular homeschoolers planning to move here to even out the playing field.

    • Molly 14.1

      Apart from the obvious typos – missed the link to the speakers:
      Building a God centred family

    • joe90 14.2

      With the frightful anti-science accelerated christian education (A.C.E.) curriculum being used here I’d say they’ve already got their foothold.

      • Molly 14.2.1

        Yes, was scared off a introductory visit to a homeschool support group many years ago when they trotted out an ACE curriculum (ie. left halfway through with another equally appalled attendee and went to coffee, made a good friend)

        However, know a few moderate Christians that use the ACE curriculum, primarily because homeschoolers don’t have access to the Min of Ed resources or the NZ curriculum and ACE qualifications were accepted as Tertiary entry requirements.

        There does however, seem to have been a recent increase in REALLY fundamental, hard-right conservatives.

    • ianmac 14.3

      So what are the Charter schools going to achieve Molly? Maybe those “aberrant evangelical Protestant Christian Reconstructionists” have an avenue for spreading the word.

      • Molly 14.3.1

        Personally, I’m completely against charter schools – they seem to have a tendency to increase the inequality in education that already exists.

        However, homeschoolers in the US have used them to access state funding and if the structure proposed here is the same, then you may have state funding being used to promote really radical ideas and religious beliefs… one of many reasons I’m really disappointed that this flawed idea is going ahead.

    • happynz 14.4

      Geoff Botkin boasts plans to have his son, now in his 20s, elected as the Prime Minister of NZ when he is 57.


      To be honest, read that with the same degree of WTF that I read the rest.

      The wording was a bit confusing to me as well. Not knowing any particulars about this Geoff Botkin, I can’t quite figure out if Botkin is hoping his son becomes PM when Botkin is 57 or when his son turns 57.

      Going by the above quote referencing his aspirations for his son, I have a hunch that Mr Botkin isn’t quite up to speed on how parliament works.

      • Molly 14.4.1

        Yes, WTF is still my primary response re Geoff Botkin’s aspirations for his son, but I am also mindful that I have the same response when considering our current PM.

    • prism 14.5

      I work in an op shop and have been surprised at some of the religious centred literature that we have received from time to time – it seems to be sourced from USA. One book set out to educate about financial matters which fits into the ‘prosperity’ religion approach thatis quite strong there and is a perversion of real Christianity.

      The prosperity church movement is attractive to many aspirational people, and a very good business proposition for the leaders as religious groups don’t have to pay tax,. Those at the top can accumulate assets quickly and use their example of receiving goodies to encourage followers who are told they will receive wealth if they act in line with God’s (the church’s) directions. Note Sanitarium and also note Destiny but also the plethora of churches apart from the traditional ones.

      There is an odious movement in the USA that is built around male superiority and ultimate decision making. The women in it seem to glory in a sado-masochistic approach of apparent worship of their husbands and practising utter obedience to their every word.
      In true Christianity this would be idolatory and worshipping a false god.

      • Molly 14.5.1

        There is a movement here along similar lines… was tempted to join a discussion with some women at the pools, who were talking about books. After listening a while longer, I realised the book that had them all raving had an odious title along the lines of “Dominant Husband, Submissive Wife”. Not my idea of a good book club read.

        Also along this theme, the last election prompted an unprecented wave of unsolicited emails through some homeschool loops asking everyone to support Colin Craig, by votes, volunteers and financial donations. Most loops are self-moderated and are usually just about events, activities and resources. Spent a lot of time sending out cease and desist emails at that time.

  15. veutoviper 15

    I am not into Twitter, but occasionally check out one or two.

    Oh, look – Pete George is still around and now commenting on Judith Collins’ Twitter. This conversation mentions a number of authors/commenters on TS – eg Eddie, MS


    • lprent 15.1

      Amusing. I really don’t know why they bother. But I guess that Pete George is just stroking Judith Collins now that his last party has kind of disintegrated. Must need a soapbox.

      • Populuxe1 15.1.1

        That’s an image that will haunt my nightmares until death’s sweet release.

    • QoT 15.2

      If the truth of anything were to be determined by “Pete George once alleged it and no one thought he was important enough to contradict”, oh what a world we would live in. Pete George probably wouldn’t be permitted internet access, for a start …

  16. Morrissey 17

    A Pure Wind blew into New Zealand this morning
    Christopher Hill interviewed by Chris Laidlaw

    Radio NZ National, Sunday 2 June 2013

    Christopher Hill is the kind of smooth-talking reptile who is indispensable to aggressive regimes like the United States: he puts a pleasant face on what are all too often criminal and unspeakable policies. This morning, interviewed by a respectful Chris Laidlaw, the former U.S. ambassador and “troubleshooter” spoke in the same soothing, comforting tones throughout. He spoke of going out to dinner with Serbian, Chinese and North Korean negotiators; he was keen to remind us that they have their human side, even if they are always wary. Hill is the epitome of Beltway smoothness, the ultimate schmoozing government insider, the very embodiment of a velvet-voiced diplomat.

    It’s all a front though. Underneath the calm voice, Christopher Hill is actually as hardline, and as doctrinaire as any frothing neocon.

    Hill is infamous for calling the New Zealand Nuclear-Free legislation a “relic”, and “something we needed to get over.” Chris Laidlaw actually raised this subject with him but, disappointingly, did not challenge him. In the end, Laidlaw might as well have not even broached the subject; Hill used it as an opportunity to speak nonsensical fluff for several minutes, thereby killing off the original point. It’s the oldest political trick of them all, and Laidlaw should have been alert to it. Instead, he laughed along meekly; it was almost as abject a failure as Paul Holmes’ moronic 2005 “interview” with the British war criminal Alistair Campbell.

    To make things worse, Hill spoke with apparent warmth and enthusiasm about the New Zealand Provincial Reconstruction Team and the “deeds they have done in Afghanistan.” Now, it is possible that Christopher Hill might be completely ignorant of the scandal and opprobrium that has swirled around the New Zealand PRT, including their possible involvement in the illegal capture, torture and summary execution of Afghani civilians and resistance fighters. Frankly, however, I think he would know all about this, and was simply spouting empty rhetoric.

    Instead of challenging him, Laidlaw simply heaped on more praise of his guest, saying “Richard Holbrooke described you as brilliant, fearless and argumentative.”

    Hill laughs engagingly at this. He says he does not care for “finger-wagging”. It’s just not his style. It was people like Christopher Hill that George Orwell had in mind when he wrote that political language is “designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. ”

    I think Chris Laidlaw was aware that he was being snowed by an expert, bullshitted by the biggest, smoothest bullshitter of them all. But it is no doubt difficult to get into a serious mode of questioning against such an ostensibly pleasant fellow as Christopher Hill. Still, here’s hoping that, one of these days, Christopher Hill will be grilled by somebody in the same way that Kim Hill grilled the former Australian prime minister John Howard.

    In the meantime, though, a doleful, discombobulated Chris Laidlaw closed off this epic exercise in diplomatic deception in the following defeated fashion: “That was Christopher Hill, the non-finger-wagger. He’s the dean of the Josef Korbel School of International Studies in Denver, Colorado. Here’s Fleetwood Mac…”

    • Matt 17.1

      That’s a lot of axe grinding. Glass of lemonade?

      • Morrissey 17.1.1

        That’s a lot of axe grinding.

        Actually, it didn’t take me too long. I type with the speed and facility of a woman, thanks to my Commercial College course many years ago.

        Glass of lemonade?

        Thanks, buddy! Do you have any Pimms?

        • Populuxe1

          “I type with the speed and facility of a woman…”
          Oy vey! Must be those little hands…. #sexistmuch?

          • Colonial Viper

            I think it’s sexual descrimination against men; male typists can match the “speed and facility” of any woman /sarc

          • Lanthanide

            Hmm, I have very small hands for a man – only 1 person I’ve found with smaller hands was a woman. My avg WPM is about 80-90 and top speed about 115. Not sure if the small hands help or hinder me.

            • Populuxe1

              For the record, it was an allusion to Lockwood Smith on the subject of immigrant labour. I manage about 125 wpm. If gender had anything to do with it, one must be typing with entirely the wrong appendage.

              • prism

                Ho Ho some fast typists here. What accuracy do you achieve though? The editing of some of the blogs here is often lose (loose).

                • Morrissey

                  Ho Ho some fast typists here. What accuracy do you achieve though?

                  Well, I for one am as accurate as any woman.


                  ….. (Was it WRONG to say that?)

                  • Populuxe1

                    Are you permanently trapped in an episode of “Mad Men” or something?

              • Morrissey

                For the record, it was an allusion to Lockwood Smith on the subject of immigrant labour.

                I got it, my friend. I appreciate the breadth and depth of your knowledge, which enables you to employ such witty allusions at the drop of a hat.

                …one must be typing with entirely the wrong appendage.

                Hmmmm…. I have long had the impression that “one” has been indulging in the practice known in vulgar circles as “one-handed typing”.

                • Populuxe1

                  I’m afraid not, Morrissey, you simply don’t turn me on

                  • Morrissey

                    I’m afraid not, Morrissey, you simply don’t turn me on

                    More dishonesty.

                    Are you John Banks, perchance?

  17. Jenny 18

    Your taxpayer money at work.

    Underpaid and understaffed and run for profit, Public Private Partnerships in the health system.

    While in the care of private health provider, Spectrum. An autistic boy, in what can only be a deliberate assault, has his testicles kicked in…..
    He spends 10 days in hospital and has one testicle amputated. No one is charged, no one is held accountable.
    Young male autistic boys often masturbate continuously and publicly, which undoubted, can be very trying and even upsetting for their carers. One of his care givers is guilty of this vicious assault.
    None of the caregivers at the Spectrum care home have been stood down, and are all still in charge of handicapped young people. The Spectrum staff at this South Auckland community care home, could not have been unaware of the assault and probably also know the identity of the perpetrator, but have kept their silence.
    In cases like this, where the victim cannot speak for themselves and the perpetrator remains unidentified. At the very least those responsible for his immediate care should all be suspended from their posts and made to do anger management courses at their employer’s expense.

    This is the third case of abuse of intellectually handicapped people in community care homes in as many weeks.

    We the public and the families of those being abused and the victims themselves deserve better.


    Will something be done?

    No, nothing will happen, and the abuse will continue.

    Serco who run our prisons in a similar ppp scheme. Have their funding cut every time a prisoner escapes, whatever the circumstances. Spectrum and the other ppp providers for the intellectually handicapped, should have their funding cut every time one of these assaults happens in their care homes.

    Maybe then, something would be done.

    • dpalenski 18.1

      Nothing will be done until services are brought back in house until then MOH and ministers will wipe their hands clean blame the contractor and it goes around and nothing happens. The state ducks out and contractor passes the buck, person with disability loses.

      A disability services agency should be created we need move on from health & disability being one and the same thing because most people with disabilities including myself are not sick. Also most disability services have no medical aspect to them anyway. To run and/or manage them it’s the only serious way to even say you put the person with the disability first and who knows maybe more carers might treat their clients as human rather than “it” that I’ve heard come out of some people’s mouths.

  18. Pete 19

    The Greens’ policy on school nurses sounds very promising. It’s directly aimed at improving quality of life, is a fence at the top of the cliff rather than an ambulance at the bottom of it, and will ensure better educational outcomes through healthier kids. It would probably save money in the long run. I really can’t imagine how an adequate argument can be marshalled against it.

    • ianmac 19.1

      Yes there is pete. The $30 mil cost would have to be taken off the gift to Private Schools, and that will not do!

      • Molly 19.1.1

        Not to mention the other direct funding of private schools through Aspire Scholarships – a policy introduced by ACT in 2009 and still on offer.

        From recollection $5m a year….but I can’t seem to find it online. Am drawing on memory ofan educational lecture I attended with Roger Douglas and Heather Roy at MacLeans college a couple of years ago.

        Update: Found a reference Budget 2009 allocated $2.6 million to these scholarships, but was mentioned at the time that this would increase to $5m.

        • prism

          Thanks Molly – keeping track of these little sweeteners that are sort of passed in anonymous plain brown files is important.

    • bad12 19.2

      True, i have this to say about ‘parental responsibility’, taxation of WINZ benefits, directly cutting monies from WINZ benefits, disallowing WINZ beneficiaries with children to access working for Families payments,

      Those are but 3 things that past Governments have achieved which directly ATTACK the ability of parents to carry out and achieve such ‘parental responsibility’,

      i can add others as most readers here can as well, the 2008 tax switch and the move to further casualalise the workforce into part time employment being a couple more,

      ‘Parental responsibility’ and the ability to carry out such a function continually under attack by successive Governments simply reduces parental ability to perform such a function,

      Yes to breakfast and lunch in schools, Yes to having health nurses and social workers attached to schools, and Yes to providing gumboots and coats in winter to any kid in school that shows up without one,

      And when all is said and done it has to be YES to the provision of after-school meals and extra teachers to help with the kids that don’t get help with the home-work at home,

  19. Poission 20

    Enniskillen the new Potemkin why fact is always better then fiction


    • Colonial Viper 20.1

      Can’t let the financial and political royalty see the true sorry state of the nations and the people that they are “leading”

    • Draco T Bastard 20.2

      Isn’t that what was supposedly done for one of the great communist leaders last century? I seem to recall a RWNJ or two mentioning it.

      • Colonial Viper 20.2.1

        The parallels between the USA/western allies (who “won”) and the F-USSR (who “lost) are growing all the time.

        On another note, a friend of mine remarked that it looks like the Russians have won the space race with the USA through sheer bloody minded endurance – they can still send men into orbit, the USA cannot.

        • Poission

          it looks like the Russians have won the space race .

          Soon to have 3 major launch sites (it effectively through Soyuz runs the ESA launch platforms)

  20. Herodotus (CV Supporter) 21

    Why is so much energy being misdirected to “fix” the housing issue ?
    As local councils, national politics both left & right muddy the waters by isolated fixes. All this does is create distortions that instead of improving the situation increase the magnitude of the problem, The Auckland Unitary Plan is already being reported as a cause for further increases in property values, adding to the problem.
    A single fix is not the answer e.g. GGT A series of steps that are co ordinated are whats required, both at local and central level.
    There is a growing concern being voiced over the increasing indebtness of NZ Inc and a growing frequency warning those to future proof their investments from increasing interest rates.
    NZ is in urgent need of a mixture of measures to rebalance this. CGT, Taxation changes (especially in regard to Interest deductibility), town planning, housing construction to cater for the entire spectrum, state housing stock, to name a few.

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