Open Mike 03/01/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 3rd, 2017 - 161 comments
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161 comments on “Open Mike 03/01/2017”

    • mauī 1.1

      If its true that many people involved with suicide prevention discouraged Mike King and then didn’t attend his talk in Kaitaia I find that shocking. It would be like Kaikoura turning away some of the emergency services after the quake.

    • DH 1.2

      The depressing thing about stories like that is it brings out all the pompous jackasses who say people should do this, they should do that, it’s their own fault blah blah.

      I wonder just how many suicides can be laid directly at the feet of uncaring Governments, politicians and bureaucrats. I suspect it’s in the thousands.

      • greywarshark 1.2.1

        When you hear the saying that pessimists are those who are most in touch with reality and being probably right, the wonder is that there aren’t more suicides.

        We keep ourselves sane by having parallel consciousnesses going on at the same time I think. If so, then we are all split personalities, not quite bi-polar but balancing on a tipping point all the time. But we have to or we would not be able to handle stories of Syria, Australia, NZ, and happenings like the holocaust happening to many people over and over again, only in Germany using modern industrial methods. Still we must hope and try to encourage ourselves and others to be positive despite our human frailties.

        I’m going all philosophical because we have to think about what we are, or we may as well lie down and let artificial intelligence and techno-advantages and its fellow travellers sell we humans out, with our own connivance. We need to turn one of our public holidays into extolling humans day! Seriously. Start doing it now before the grey and black people take us over like a zombie wave.

        • Rosemary McDonald

          “Still we must hope and try to encourage ourselves and others to be positive despite our human frailties.”

          Like this young lassie…

          Nina Griffiths, 18, People’s Choice The Hits New Zealander of the Year.

          Began her work by supporting (as a 13 year old) abused youngsters at Pamapuria School…

          With Young People like this coming along…maybe there is hope.

          • greywarshark

            I get concerned about children taking on caring roles. It is good for youngsters to learn to be themselves first not be putting others first when they should be growing up and developing their own personalities and abilities.

            Learning to be considerate and generous and respectful of others and understand one’s own behaviour, abilities and faults is the first task of a youngster. Those who live in dysfunctional households with unreliable parents or sick parents and have to take the parental role on may manage well or be heavily burdened. It is better if they can spend most of their time growing up, getting their education and personal skills, not taking on adult responsibilities.

            Some manage well in becoming little parents, but I don’t like kids being burdened, and I don’t agree with them being encouraged to be little adults. (I’m thinking of clothing styles etc. here. Also entered into sports competitions and encouraged to be striving winners so that games just aren’t any more.) Balance is the thing needed.

            • Rosemary McDonald

              ” It is good for youngsters to learn to be themselves first not be putting others first when they should be growing up and developing their own personalities and abilities.”

              You know, when I read that I immediately thought of the offspring of Our Leader Past. Growing up in stable privilege, having all care and support and no responsibility. Indulged.

              Imagine the planet populated by their ilk.

              • greywarshark

                If disabled people improved their conditions at the expense of young people becoming their carers it would not be a net improvement. And having time to grow up and get an education and mature inti a young adult does not mean that they will turn out like the spoilt children of isolated rich, people.

                We won’t get any encouragement for the idea of thinking about others’ welfare from this cohort of pollies and probably never from the RW. However developers are working on help robots which will be of value. They may be as useful as washing machines which are popular programmable machines. We can hope that a caring and practical humanity will arise in sufficient numbers to return to us our world, much depleted, but with some use and wear left in it. In the meantime there are some improvements, not fast enough I am sure.

                • Rosemary McDonald

                  “If disabled people improved their conditions at the expense of young people becoming their carers it would not be a net improvement. ”

                  Sometimes, Greywarshark there is no other option…other than the horror of residential care, or unreliable and inconsistent care from ‘formal’ providers.

                  The reality is that there is an ever increasing expectation that family members will assume most or all of a disabled member’s care.

                  Families are usually made up of people who love and care about each other…emotions that successive governments of all leanings have exploited for those whose impairments are not covered by ACC.

                  It is nonsense to suggest that it would be the case that a person with a disability would choose to handicap the future of a young family member so that their own ‘conditions’ would be ‘improved’.

                  Likewise the concept that a robot could ever replace a human carer.

                  However….this topic is not about disability and the potential ruining of a young person’s prospects by them having to provide care.

                  This is about a young person volunteering to provide support to her PEERS.

                  A huge difference.

                  And who better to support young people who have been betrayed and abused by adults than another young person with an obviously caring heart and a willing, listening ear?

                  Who better to organise a group to tackle bullying in schools than other young people experiencing on a daily basis the competitive culture that exists in schools?

                  And who better to proactively seek to have a wider community discussion about YOUTH suicide than a young person who has experienced personal loss through suicide?

                  It does no harm whatsoever for these young people to take on these roles. Trying to be contributing members of their communities is as much a valuable a part of their education and maturation as taking selfies and inane facebook chatter.

  1. Carolyn_nth 2

    RNZs predictions for 2017. Always interesting too see what is on journalists’ radar.


    Prime Minister Bill English will try to win favour with middle and lower income New Zealand with bold budget policies for social equity.

    Jacinda Ardern will romp to victory in the Mt Albert by-election on 25 February.

    Kingmaker Winston Peters strikes again. After the general election in September, Mr Peters will court Labour, but, given their Greens allegiance, he’ll likely go with National in exchange for a top job.

    The economy will continue to grow, then hit a wall in the second half of the year as a Trump-style shock hits the global economy and concerns about the eurozone (specifically Italy) and China’s economic health pose a threat.

    There will be a significant company failure.

    The Commerce Commission will turn down one and possibly two major media mergers and find its decisions appealed in court.

    Donald Trump will be inaugurated US President. He (and/or his picks for national security and budget directors) will cause at least one international crisis. The world will long for Barack Obama.

    Climate change will spell another record hot year, including for New Zealand. More species will edge towards extinction, Arctic sea ice will melt in winter and more coral will die. There will be at least one megastorm.

    Auckland house prices will keep marching upwards. Auckland’s Task Force on Housing will make recommendations on how to accelerate building, but the house shortage will continue to worsen.

    Queenstown’s traffic woes will get some relief with the first stage of the $22 million eastern access road opening. Plans for a $60m publicly-funded convention centre will get dropped in favour of a private one by Remarkables Park Town Centre.

    Otago will get a shockingly early – and an appallingly late – snow dumping.

    Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt will start riding a push-scooter to council meetings.

    Myself, I rarely/usually can’t make predictions. I’m never quite certain what will happen next – except to expect some very unexpected happenings.

    Though I do think Bling will try to get onside with middle and lower income Kiwis. The bits above about the economy and Auckland house prices seem very likely.

    I have no idea about Shadbolt’s transport preferences.

  2. Olwyn 3

    Locals showing resistance to an old working class Melbourne suburb being turned into a lifestyle centre. A cafe owner felt the need to stick a sign in his window saying that he had lived in the area for eight years, sent his kids to a local school and was renting. People really are getting sick of life-styles taking precedence over lives. At least the cafe owner, who comes across as quite decent, justified his presence on their terms rather than insisting that they give way to “progress” or move somewhere cheaper.

  3. garibaldi 4

    re RNZ Journalists. Wow ,their predictions are so conservative and “safe”. I guess that’s a reflection of what RNZ has become. The indomitable and much cherished Kim Hill is the only one left with any fire.

    • Carolyn_nth 4.1

      Yes. They are pretty superficial, and mostly focus on the pretty obvious.

      Though, at least the housing crisis, the fragility of the NZ economy, and climate change are on their radar. And that is more than can be said for the Stuff predictions, which were all about the GAME of politics.

    • Morrissey 4.2

      Kim Hill is not indomitable. She was hauled over the coals, deservedly so, by John Pilger in 2003. All of her extensive retinue of pouting, scowling and frowning did not save her…

      • garibaldi 4.2.1

        You are correct Morrissey, Pilger did trounce her on that occasion. For some unknown reason she was not prepared well that day and was indeed quite ‘anti’. However I still rate her immensely. Nine to noon virtually died after Kim left it.

    • Siobhan 4.3

      Generally I agree. However Kim Hills view that Hilary should win, but didn’t …because she is a woman was, to my mind, breathtakingly stupid. And, speaking as a woman, pretty darned offensive.

      • garibaldi 4.3.1

        Fair enough Siobhan. I did not realize that, and I agree that was a stupid attitude(common as it was) to have.

        • Colonial Viper

          But it was HER TURN!!!

          • Clump_AKA Sam

            Monica, and THEN Hillary

          • gsays

            Hey CV, a belated welcome back and seasons greetings to you.

            Have missed yr view on things.

            Liking the illiberal liberal tag, it’s gonna get used by me.

            • Colonial Viper

              Hi gsays, thanks so much for your support now and while I was benched, much appreciated 🙂

              • North

                Is it truly as simple as people for you and people against you CV ?
                Is there not a tolerable amalgam somewhere CV ? Or has this all become weirdly egocentric or something ? Which would mean that the main players have not learned a thing.

  4. Cinny 5

    Am very lucky to have a number of friends and their families come to stay with me this week.

    We were chatting about politics last night, turns out one of my friends had Gerry Brownlee as a woodwork teacher. He said Gerry was not a good teacher, would spent most of his time in his office doing political stuff rather than teaching the lads, also said he was a nasty bully and bigger in size than he is now.

    Another friend turns out he had gone to school with Bill English, apparently he had never met anyone so boring.

    NZ is such a small world, and it appears not much has changed.

  5. halfcrown 6

    As I have said before, go back 20/30 years we used to sail our small boat on this lake and kids used to swim in it. Not now. Someone who has been in the engineering business, if I let the coolant oils from the machine tools leak or leach into the water table or drains I would have been heavily fined and told to fix or be closed down. Why is it then these arsoles are allowed to pollute the country with their large industrial dairy farms? I don’t want to hear the shit about “export earnings” as I know quite a few non-dairying companies just doing that, but are subject to the rules, Why is this sector allowed to get away with all this pollution of our so-called green and pure country.

    Oh, I have just remembered it is all the bird shit in the lakes, not the cows causing the problems. sarc/

    • BM 6.1

      As I have said before, go back 20/30 years we used to sail our small boat on this lake and kids used to swim in it

      That was probably more to do with ignorance than anything else, if it didn’t kill you, it was all good.

      Back then I doubt people would have had any idea if the lakes were full of faecal matter or cyanobacteria.

      • halfcrown 6.1.1

        You could be right there BM, but I have been tipped out many a time and others as well, and taken the odd mouthful in the process. I don’t recall anybody getting sick I know I never did even if we were ignorant of the conditions of the lake. Visited Ngaroto the other day the lake colour is now RED something I have never seen in all the years I sailed there. Good reply mate but the only reason this lake is now red and highly toxic is through intensified dairying. You can come back with smart answers but you can’t get away from the fact that there are too many cows that are unsustainable and the numbers have got to be culled and get back to more manageable numbers the country can handle.
        It is now bloody ridiculous, traditional sheep country in the SI are now being turned into dairying that can only be sustained by large irrigation systems which are well and truly stuffing up the local water supply. When you get the likes of Graham Sydney the artist voicing his concern about areas like the Maniototo Plain something has to be done like now if we are going to leave this country in a reasonable condition for the next generation.

        • garibaldi

          Shallow lake, warmer weather – there are other factors at play as well as dairying in these ‘swamp’ lakes in the Waikato.

          • BM

            Yep, Ngaroto it’s a rotting peat bog lake so it’s always going to have naturally high nutrient levels.

            • halfcrown

              Are you two telling me that all of a sudden it is caused by weather conditions and rotting peat? If so why not 20/30 years ago. I class those two comments as a Nick Smith comment, so you are both wrong, its all down to birdshit as Smith has already informed us.

              • garibaldi

                Half crown, I must admit I haven’t seen Ngaroto for about 10 years now, but it always was brackish to me. Also Waikare was a cess pool many years ago. We used to spend half our summers immersed in the Hamilton lake when we were kids- wouldn’t hop in it now. I am just saying that not all deterioration has been caused by dairying, though it is a big factor.

                • halfcrown

                  Of course, both you & BM are right garibaldi (christ I am beginning to sound like Jones with Hooten.) I thought it was a good idea when the water slide was removed from Hamilton Lake. There was no way I would swim there, and the Waikato Lakes are known for the brackish colour because of the peat.
                  I am not an environmental nutter but I love this place and I would hope someone considers the long term effects this industrialised farming is having on NZ I would not like to see NZ end up like some of the cesspits we have all seen overseas.

                  • In Vino

                    I still sail on Hamilton Lake, and, away from shallows near the shore where measurements are often taken, find the water perfectly safe to swim in. But Hamilton, alone among the Waikato peat lakes, has no inflow from dairy farms, nor any of the dreaded Koi carp that infest all others. (These fish spread to all other lakes through farms’ irrigation/drainage channels – none are connected to Hamilton Lake.) The algae Hamilton Lake gets is a different one to all other lakes’ as well.
                    I agree that farming has to tidy up its act with all irrigation/drainage channels and shorelines, plus reduce usage of leaching phosphates, etc. What is happening to excellent lakes like Ngaroto is nothing short of criminal.

  6. Morrissey 7

    The internet is a public resource. It’s too valuable
    to be entrusted to private entities like TradeMe.

    Nearly one year ago, the caring and sharing folks at TradeMe announced that they were burying the Old Friends site. Their “justification” for this execution is a model of mealy-mouthed corporate blather….

    Today we switched off It wasn’t a decision we made lightly, and we really appreciate the support you’ve given Old Friends over the past 13 years.

    We’ve got some good news about the publicly available information though (e.g. photos, lost & found, notices). We’ve been working with the team over at the National Library and they’re in the process of archiving this information via an annual process called a ‘web harvest’. This means that information will remain available even after Old Friends closes. If you have any questions about the web harvest, please get in touch with the National Library.

    • RedBaronCV 7.1

      I visited a couple of times ( not really my thing) and did wonder how they coped with people who weren’t too interested in being put on the site by others. I suspect that not everyone wanted a named photo of themself in standard one posted on the net by that helpful old classmate. Or some one “sharing memories” that may have been very different from the other party’s memory.

      • Morrissey 7.1.1

        I agree. I also used to wonder what people thought about being labeled “Unknown” by their ex-classmates!

        • RedBaronCV

          That too. Overall I can’t say I would miss it’s existence but it’s there in the National Library along with “TheStandard” archive.
          The big question is – do you let your children (& grandchildren) know about your standard blog handle -in your will?- for when they do the family history research? Most of us have only a vague idea of our forebear’s personality & character but a blog would give some colour to that.
          I found ( courtesy of a WWI publicly funded project) a hand written note from a great uncle who subsequently died in the war. It was like touching a fragile hand from the past.

          • Draco T Bastard

            I found ( courtesy of a WWI publicly funded project) a hand written note from a great uncle who subsequently died in the war.

            I have the criminal records of one of my fathers uncles from the 19th century to go on 😈

            My sister has been researching our ancestry and traced some of the family back to the late 1400s. The available information is… interesting.

  7. Anne 8

    Goodness me, what a bunch of dim-witted low-life frequent Kiwiblog. Some of the adjectives used to describe ‘mickysavage’ are almost unprintable. Farrar’s posts, while hopelessly politically compromised, are at least readable but the level of commentary below them has the aura of an IQ level of around 30. Why would anyone bother to read them.

    Btw to lprent: now you’re back on deck… I haven’t had any ‘replies’ function (right hand side) for yonks now. Have tried to log on but must be doing something wrong. Won’t work.

    • lprent 8.1

      It is a strange beast, carefully designed to provide the service without burdening the server.

      The current incantation of that runs off the javascript in your browser. As the page loads, it looks at your client side cookies that maintain your reply details. If you have commented on your current client machine OR have logged in, you will have a cookie stored. It requests a limited number of replies using those details.

      If your client browser or machine stops cookies or limits javascript jQuery too much (eg by closing TCP connections too fast), then it won’t work.

      There are two possible results. It could be that you get a blank replies tab, in which case it is likely to be the javascript side (I’d have to peek at the code). Or you could just not get the tab. Maybe I should put some diagnostics into the tab and always have it present.

      …but the level of commentary below them has the aura of an IQ level of about 25. Why would anyone bother to read them.

      There was a reason that I refer to the comments section of KiwiBlog as “the sewer”. As far as I can tell a substantial portion of the regular commenters think with their genitalia. And very few of them have a clit to think with – so the drain of blood causes them to have a severely diminished cranial blood supply.

      • Anne 8.1.1

        Thank-you for your prompt response to my problem lprent… most of which I don’t understand. 🙁

        I take it then there’s nothing I can do about it? Guide me to the buttons I need to hit on my keyboard and I’ll be right. I get a blank replies tab. I think.

        • Andre

          My replies tab is blank on The Standard front page, but then when I go to any of the posts, my replies show up.

          • Anne

            That’s how it started with me but then the replies tab went permanently blank.

            Edit: geez, I tried one more time and its working like you say Andre but it hasn’t been doing it for yonks. I feel a fool. 😡 Maybe lprent has done something. As you were folks. 😳

            [lprent: Not me. ]

          • lprent

            Ok. That is just weird. That sounds like the javascript simply isn’t triggering from the front page. I can’t think of any way that could happen. It is triggered from inside the div on the right where it displays (I think).

        • lprent

          Ok. That means you are getting a javascript timeout. It detected a cookie, tried the request, but didn’t get a response.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.2

        I still get an empty reply tab when I first get on to the site. When I go to a second page it fills up then. From what you say it would seem that the javascript isn’t being fired on initial page load but works after that.

        • BM

          You have to use callbacks with javascript/jquery when doing asynchronous operations, it’s the only to make sure your code runs in the order you want it to.

          • Anne

            Thanks for the assistance folks. Ahhh BM, that looks a bit too complicated for me but will check it out later. 🙂

          • lprent

            Yeah of course. You wouldn’t believe how much I live in async when coding. My favourite c++ library is boost::asio and anyone who works with me will tell you how boring I can be on singing its praises.

            The problem turned out that it wasn’t triggering because a dependency between a utils script and jquery hadn’t been set up in the wordpress codex. On Firefox (for some reason) it decided to launch the javascripts in a different order on the front page only.

            • BM

              I knew you’d know, I could be wrong but I think Draco has just started to get into coding..

              Thought I’d share that bit of info, can be a bit of a head scratcher for people just starting out.

              Reply tab is working on chrome, unfortunately it’s now throwing an error

              std_read_cookie is not defined
              at (index):2007

              • Draco T Bastard

                I could be wrong but I think Draco has just started to get into coding..

                Should complete my Bach in Comp Systems (Prog.) this year.

                I actually had a similar problem with C# and although I was sure what the problem was the only info I could find on it was MS promise that it would all be loaded correctly at run time

              • lprent

                std_read_cookie is not defined

                Annoying. Temporary inelegant fix by moving the function from utils.js to inline in the header. I have a bit too much code in my head right now to jump languages.

        • lprent

          Odd. What OS/Browser?

          NTS: I really should make that show on the superadmin pages so I don’t have to keep asking that.

          • Draco T Bastard

            OS: Win10
            Browser: Firefox 50.1.0

            • lprent

              Just tried it on same version of firefox on linux (chrome and several other browsers worked fine). It picked up my cookies on the first display but only gave me a blank Replies tab. The replies showed up on a post screen.

              Can’t see anything obvious except I can’t even see the query being launched.

            • lprent

              Just tried it on same version of firefox on linux (chrome and several other browsers worked fine). It picked up my cookies on the first display but only gave me a blank Replies tab. The replies showed up on a post screen.

              Can’t see anything obvious except I can’t even see the query being launched.

              Ummm. That is triggered with this bit of code at the end of utils.js

              $( document ).ready( load_replies() )

              Ok. Just spotted the problem. It is loading utils before loading the jquery – so the statement is meaningless to your browser. I have no idea why this wouldn’t handle the same as it does on chrome and other browsers.

            • lprent

              Fixed. I just needed to register utils to load with a jquery dependency

    • Morrissey 8.2

      Why don’t you sign on, Anne, and join the fun? See if you can beat my record of posts marked “Hidden due to low comment rating”….

      By the way, there’s a major event coming up there soon….

      • Anne 8.2.1

        Why don’t you sign on, Anne, and join the fun.

        Very tempting, but I spend too much time at the keyboard as it is.

      • halfcrown 8.2.2

        “Why don’t you sign on, Anne, and join the fun? See if you can beat my record of posts marked “Hidden due to low comment rating”….”

        You must be joking Morrissey, you must consider Anne’s health.

        As I was pointing out to BM @6.1.1 I would not sail on now a sewer known as Lake
        Ngaroto as it is a danger to your health. kiwiblog is in the same category (grin)

        • Morrissey

          Nice analogy, halfcrown.

        • In Vino

          FYI halfcrown – I still occasionally sail at Ngaroto despite the algae, and the club still has a good core of keen sailors. None of them have suffered the threatened dire consequences of making contact (or immersion!) with the water, but this is not a reason for not reducing the pollution. It remains one of Waikato’s best sailing venues for clear, steadier breezes than others.

    • greywarshark 8.3

      Just from an observational point of view about the Replies, it seems to me that I don’t get access to them till I have, in the present, put a comment. It seemed that was necessary, but am unsure if it then works with or without a reply as my system isn’t working well. (I have to spend an hour so learning about it and tweaking.)

      • lprent 8.3.1

        Hi GreyWarShark
        Are your comments going straight through now? I did a tweak yesterday that should have diminished the effects of getting auto moderated.

        • greywarshark

          You are tops. I wondered why going through faster. Can’t give definite timing but I can see them now quite soon. Appreciate your patience. I have had a taste of almost pure hatred from clique of techno-in-people on another supposedly friendly community site when I blundered into an in-depth discussion thread. So know how trying learners are. And unfortunately we are eternal learners, it is built into the system that there are constant changes and readjustments – all makes work for infrastructure engineers though.

          • lprent

            No problem. I’m having a day of coding at home (mainly for work since I head back in the morning), so these are useful diversion/avoidance things while shifting from holiday to work mode.

            A close examination of an old version of the site compared to the current showed a new option that appears to have been turned on automatically.

            Wordfence free version already includes excellent comment spam filtering. If you are a premium customer, we provide an additional feature that does a further check to prevent comment spam. This feature does an additional check on the source IP of inbound comments and any URLs that are included. We have found this feature has a high likelihood of reducing spam that has been known to slip through traditional spam filters.

            So I suspect that you or your ISP’s local area have made it onto a blacklist somewhere.

    • garibaldi 8.4

      “The aura of an IQ level of about 30.” Sounds about right for them.

  8. greywarshark 9

    India and its attitudes to women. When there are rigid limitations on women and, if not adhered to, then to men in a society that discriminates and disparages women that is a sign that a majority of men can then abandon social controls and treat the person as a thing to be played with, abused.

    In this situation perhaps women should carry whistles or noise makers that erupt when they are pressed so that the occurrence cannot go unnoticed, and an effective instant control like the old-fashioned stocks be instituted where such men would be ridiculed. There will not be a lessening of this bad behaviour and attitudes while there is no punishment, no denunciation of it in public.

    In any society if that happens then women are a subset of society, only accepted when they conform. It’s a hard one to change when in what are named shame-based societies, if a women reports a rape to the police and expects the miscreants to be named and punished, instead she is imprisoned for now being unchaste even though unwilling and unwitting, perhaps too trusting.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      That’s just British colonial self-righteousness rearing its dusty head again. Who are these late on the scene white people who think that they are going to change 3000 years of Indian societal structure?

      • greywarshark 9.1.1

        I understand you but 3000 years must include much change. The present already includes effects of colonial change from past centuries, change, reaction, change, improvement, advantage taken, reaction, change etc. It’s all humans trying each other with the powerful being in the driving seats. Not just in India.

        Anthropologists? have found that traditional, oral people have plastic memories.
        Plastic as in being movable and changeable. At first visit to a new area, the moderns sang their modern song in reply to a traditional song. When visiting the same area a decade later, it was incorporated into their traditional music and they had no memory of it being of late inclusion. It had been absorbed and was now part of their historical repetoire. That’s how we are. We absorb and change to include or react against.

        • Colonial Viper

          India and Russia are moving even closer together geopolitically; I expect that will mean that western media will have many more scathing remarks about India during this year.

          • greywarshark

            What are R and I doing to move closer? A marriage of convenience? As part of BRIC? Are there shared borders in the north or buffer states both have interest in? Resources?

            • Colonial Viper

              As part of BRICS: engineering, economic and military co-operation without the strings attached that the US requires.

              As well as reducing reliance on the US dollar and safeguarding their military and nuclear capabilities from any future US sanctions.

              eg. India to lease a second modernised Aukla class nuclear attack submarine from Russia


              • McFlock

                India has also recently signed a defense logistics agreement with the US, held joint training exercises with them, and a couple of years ago bought some US P8 sub-hunting aircraft (to replace Tupulovs, funnily enough).

                It’s Pakistan that’s pivoting towards Russia, FWIW. Having burnt their bridges with the yanks.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Yeah, and Obama cleared India to have access to some US nuclear technologies.

                  Re: Pakistan afaik they still allow the US to run drone operations in their country and intelligence co-operation continues unhindered. Although diplomatic relations have cooled off.

      • McFlock 9.1.2


        Young people are dressing like westerners, which is the excuse for lack of police (western power structure) intervention that was given by the state (western power structure) minister (western parliamentary structure).

        Yes, lots of older social structures still exist. But to argue that change is impossible is one of the dumber things you’ve written today (and you’ve written a lot).

        • Colonial Viper

          Yes, lots of older social structures still exist. But to argue that change is impossible is one of the dumber things you’ve written today (and you’ve written a lot).

          you may think change wrt to India’s rigid attitudes to women and class structures may be theoretically possible; I’m just telling you that it’s not going to happen this century and especially not due to western colonial tut tut tutting.

          • McFlock

            When you see the tut-tutting, I’m sure you’ll let us know.

            In the meantime, I read a a Guardian report about how local Indian media and witnesses were speaking out about the incident and calling their own minister to account.

            Look how far western society has moved in a century. Why do you think that Indian society won’t change as well?

            • Colonial Viper

              Happy to have this conversation with you again in 25 years and you can show me all the progress.

              • McFlock

                You’ll be too busy by then, having been globally lauded as The Man Who Knows Everything.

  9. Morrissey 10

    Once people like Clarence Beeby used to run New Zealand education;
    now it’s been turned over to the likes of Rodney Hide and David Seymour.

    If you aren’t filled with despair and rage after watching this documentary, you are a member of the ACT cult…

    • Pete 10.1

      “Once people like Clarence Beeby used to run New Zealand education;
      now it’s been turned over to the likes of Rodney Hide and David Seymour.”

      Credit where credit’s due – to Tolley and Parata.

      The supporters of Hide and David Seymour think education needs jackboots tromping in and stomping all over the system. Kids’ learning needs something of ballet shoes.

      With Parata they got shit covered gumboots down below a blindfolded myopic.

      Our demise as a nation is nicely depicted by the difference between Beeby and the cretins of more recent times.

      • greywarshark 10.1.1

        Parata is more likely to be inclined to ballet shoes I would think. That very self-oriented precise controlled traditional example of physical art. She may be very keen on kapa haka but she seems so crass, middle class and conservative in her thinking that she has no natural warmth in her for pakeha or Maori I think, although involved at a high level with Maori administrative roles herself or through her husband. Just my feelings and observations.

  10. Morrissey 11

    New Zealand had its own Donald Trump, three decades ago

    In 1984, New Zealand was treated to an off-Broadway preview of the infamous Trump campaign of 2016. The Kiwi version of Trump was also vulgar, ungracious, sexist, racist, obscenely wealthy due to dodgy property speculation, and had enjoyed years of fawning media coverage.

    Like Trump, he also had a way with glib phraseology. In the following clip he draws laughter from his glassy-eyed acolytes by calling Rob Muldoon “the Idi Amin of economics”….

    • garibaldi 11.1

      Thanks for that Morrissey. I will say that Jones at least had a sense of humour. When someone was pestering him about what he would do if he became PM he retorted “What do you want me to do, come around and mow your lawns?

      • Colonial Viper 11.1.1

        Trump has a very fast, very well developed New York sense of humour. Watch his SNL and world wrestling appearances, for instance. Also how he plays the crowd at political rallies.

    • Siobhan 11.2

      I still get asked, very occasionally, for Bob Jones books, usually by young men who presumably are on the hunt for sage advice from ‘Bob’.. When I react with a ‘piff..we don’t sell those sorts of books’ they appear quite taken aback. Maybe its time to restock them for cheap laughs, like our fine Ayn Rand selection.

  11. Draco T Bastard 12

    What Next for the Euro?

    It is now 15 years since the introduction of the pinnacle of European Integration – the Euro.

    Yesterday’s anniversary comes at a moment of uncertainty for both the European Union (EU) and the Eurozone. The UK’s decision to leave the EU will see the first country exit since the signing of the Treaty of Rome. The Eurozone’s periphery is still in deep crisis, with unemployment rates ranging from 13% in Portugal to more than 20% in Spain and Greece. Populist, often nationalist, political movements are on the march across the continent.

    The history of the Euro has been somewhat paradoxical: on the one hand, it was supposed to lead to further integration among the European people. On the other hand, it has divided the continent more than it has ever been since the end of World War Two.

    The problem was that they used the wrong tools, the wrong ideology to try and bring about a convergence. It was never going to work. Instead of bringing about convergence among the nations it’s actually increased economic divisions.

    Of course, a few people have got very much richer because of those policies.

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      Globalist agenda to disempower ordinary citizens, undermine democracy and wreck national sovereignty. The elite university educated lefty liberals love it all.

    • Nic the NZer 12.2

      I read Stiglitz book on the Euro recently. As he argues the Euro was supposed to cause economic convergence between states but has caused divergence instead.

      I put this down to its poor economic rationale, to its neoliberal economic arguments. I also put this as the basis for its persistence as a cause in the face of repeated and abject failure to deliver positive outcomes.

      Other similar policies in NZ such as charter schools, the govts social statistics database, selling social housing and the cause of underfunding every area of public spending will have similar persistence beyond their failures to deliver.

      While i am making guesses about the future. Bill English will deliver that blind persistence while mean time exuding a caring glow and ignoring these failures. Its in the nature of ideology.

      • Colonial Viper 12.2.1

        I put this down to its poor economic rationale, to its neoliberal economic arguments. I also put this as the basis for its persistence as a cause in the face of repeated and abject failure to deliver positive outcomes.

        Basically the same criticisms that were made in the 1980s and 1990s, and which those in authority blithely ignored because they knew better and because they could.

        • Clump_AKA Sam

          Sanctions are a big issue issue in Europe in that all there gas comes from Russia so to get around trading in dollars they’re giving up power and influence.

          • Colonial Viper

            Also why the EU desperately want Assad gone so they can get a Qatari gas pipeline through Syria to Europe, and so dump Russia as their main gas supplier.

    • millsy 12.3

      Complete German control of Europe, all without a shot being fired.

      • Draco T Bastard 12.3.1

        That does seem to be the way that it’s turned out. In fact, we could say that that seems to be the global target via the neo-liberal ideology of privatisation. Increased financial control by a very small clique.

  12. Colonial Viper 13

    China, Iran and Russia driven together to resist American monetary, economic and political hegemony

    Iran, Russia and China have fully understood that union and cooperation are the only means for mutual reinforcement. The need to fight a common problem, represented by a growing American influence in domestic affairs, has forced Tehran, Beijing and Moscow to resolve their differences and embrace a unified strategy in the common interest of defending their sovereignty.

    Events such as the war in Syria, the bombing of Libya, the overthrowing of the democratic order in Ukraine, sanctions against Iran, and the direct pressure applied to Beijing in the South China Sea, have accelerated integration among nations that in the early 1990s had very little in common.

  13. Colonial Viper 14

    NYT Op Ed: Obama’s war against whistleblowers and against journalists now gives Trump terrifying precedents to expand on

    Criticism of Mr. Obama’s stance on press freedom, government transparency and secrecy is hotly disputed by the White House, but many journalism groups say the record is clear. Over the past eight years, the administration has prosecuted nine cases involving whistle-blowers and leakers, compared with only three by all previous administrations combined. It has repeatedly used the Espionage Act, a relic of World War I-era red-baiting, not to prosecute spies but to go after government officials who talked to journalists.

    Too bad liberal lefties in the US gave Obama such a huge pass for all this authoritarian BS. I bet they will hypocritically turn on the Orangegruppenfuhrer if he does exactly the same as their favourite black President has done.

    • Siobhan 14.1

      I’m still trying to digest the implications of this

      “Second, the legislation seeks to leverage expertise from outside government to create more adaptive and responsive U.S. strategy options. The legislation establishes a fund to help train local journalists and provide grants and contracts to NGOs, civil society organizations, think tanks, private sector companies, media organizations, and other experts outside the U.S. government with experience in identifying and analyzing the latest trends in foreign government disinformation techniques. This fund will complement and support the Center’s role by integrating capabilities and expertise available outside the U.S. government into the strategy-making process. It will also empower a decentralized network of private sector experts and integrate their expertise into the strategy-making process.” (my bolds)

      Any organisation or individual who is funded from the US Military budget to expose ‘Fake News’ should be required to declare that publicly. And I can’t wait to see who will receive funding to expose fake news on Left wing Politicians like Bernie etc Protesters, Unions, Workers, the poor, any and all ethnic groups…

      • Colonial Viper 14.1.1

        I believe that they want to expand on the following model, and funnel more tax payers money to the Ivy league educated sons and daughters of favoured associates:

      • Psycho Milt 14.1.2

        Well, yeah, I guess ZeroHedge would be concerned at the prospect of people becoming better at spotting fake news and crackpot conspiracy theories – it might reduce their readership figures.

      • Ad 14.1.3

        Pretty templated from the CIA’s experience during the Cold War funding all kinds of arts organizations, infiltrating and then funding protest organizations, doing the full spectrum of buying the left, over-inflating their expectations, publishing their theories, agitating them towards violence and reaping the results for the flakiest and purest of the lefties.

        • adam

          Only those who want to disrupt, talk violence.

          Violence never wins anything for working people, except misery.

          The state will do what the state has to do to survive, and it survives by having a virtual monopoly on violence. Any one who brings a gun to drone fight, is beyond foolish, they are cut off from reality in a very bad way.

          Non-violent resistance is the only acceptable approach, and people should be active if they want any change at all, it feels like the survival of democracy rests upon non-violent protest.

      • adam 14.1.4

        Siobhan I just thought it was an updated/add-on to the

        No wait, what do we call it now Homeland Security.

        Same crap from the democrats over, and over, and over…

  14. BM 15

    Who thinks Putin will hand over Snowden as a good will gesture to Trump?

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      Yep, just in time for Trump to pin a Congressional Medal of Honour on him.

      This will happen about a month after Trump commutes Chelsea Manning’s harsh Obama handed sentence to home arrest.

      • Wayne 15.1.1

        Yeah right.

        • Colonial Viper

          Who would’ve guessed that liberal lefty Obama would persecute a record number of whistleblowers eh what an authoritarian deep state tool he turned out to be

    • I’m not sure it’s that likely. It would burn bridges with Putin’s useful idiots on the left, so there’d be a trade-off of that against the potential benefits from offering Trump a gift. The useful idiots probably don’t have any particular value beyond being unpaid propaganda distributors, but it’s not obvious that there’d be benefits from offering Trump a gift either, as he’s already a fan.

      Still, I wouldn’t be sleeping well these days if I was Snowden.

      • Colonial Viper 15.2.1

        I love the illiberal liberal left.

        Shit dude, the CIA has been after Snowden’s life since Day One. He knew that he would get this unimaginable amount of heat by revealing the truth to us.

        That’s why Snowden is a great hero, and you’re just another lousy collaborator.

  15. Colonial Viper 16

    The latest Lionel from Lionel Nation:

    Becoming a better conspiracy analyst. Realise when you are being manipulated. Avoid “smart” technology. Don’t be a gullible schmuck. And why it’s time to give up on the mainstream.

  16. lprent 17

    Test message

  17. HDCAFriendlyTroll 18

    Donald Trump, greatest American President since Reagan, puts Chicago Mayor on notice:

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      Chicago, a Democrat run US city with more killings than a low intensity war zone.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 18.1.1

        Parroting the NRA makes a change from RT.

        • Colonial Viper

          Chicago homicide rate is equivalent to 110 murders per month in NZ.

          It’s mostly blacks killing blacks in a continuous low intensity war.

          The NRA has nothing to do with it.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Apart from their implacable opposition to gun control, subsequent political funding of Republicans and the inevitable consequences of your bright orange policies on inner cities, nothing at all.

    • mpledger 18.2

      For the last 12 years or so the Chigago Mayor has been closing public schools in order to start charter schools. But the charter schools don’t take the kids from the closed schools, they take the kids that will make them look good. So the kids from the closed schools have to travel to different communities which causes lots of friction between the different gangs (there are no opt out for these gangs, a kid is in a gang by where they live). Before the last round of school closings, everyone associated with schools said it was going to increase the violence once again and 5 years down the track it has.

      Given that Trump is pro-charters and pro-privitisation, I don’t see him doing anything that will change the situation except close more neighbourhood schools and let private companies profit off tax meant for educating kids.

      • Colonial Viper 18.2.1

        For the last 12 years or so the Chigago Mayor has been closing public schools in order to start charter schools.

        You mean the Democratic Mayor of Chicago, Barack Obama’s former Chief of Staff, has been doing this? But liberals!!! REEEEEEE

        • Morrissey

          He’s not a liberal. He’s a fascist. Really. And his father is even worse….

          • Colonial Viper

            But why would Barack Obama chose a fascist as his Chief of Staff, and then support a fascist as Mayor of Chicago?

            • Morrissey

              Hopeless-Changenothing came through the same route as Emanuel did—Chicago politics, the nastiest, most cynical and corrupt politics there is, outside of Japan.

              He picked Emanuel because he gets things done. Character is of no concern, obviously, in U.S. politics.

              • swordfish

                Yep and very much part of Obama’s 2008 pre-Convention deal with the Clintons – after that any faint hope surrounding his capacity for real change flew swiftly out the window.

                Extraordinary that such a huge mandate for change from the American electorate would immediately lead to a comprehensive merger between the Obama and Clinton camps, with the latter consistently awarded seniority. Basically, a third Bill Clinton term.

                I know you and CV will be well aware of all this … but for the benefit of others (excepting, of course, our somewhat smug and wayward Clintonista chums) …

                Obama allowed his inner circle – including his economic shadow cabinet – to be entirely taken over by the Clintonite entourage: not just the utterly corrupt Rahm Emanuel but also the likes of Lawrence Summers (good buddy of Dershowitz, of course), Robert Rubin, Jason Furman, Tom Donilon, Leon Panetta, John Podesta and dear old Hillary herself … in the process, willingly entangling himself in that whole seedy history of the Hamilton Project/Rubinomics and the notorious back door between the Clinton White House and big investment banks and money funds.

                Stunning (economic and foreign policy) continuity with the old established Clintonian order … which naturally attracted more than a few admiring glances over the years from the usual Neo-Con suspects, while, at the same time, naturally enough alienating a whole swathe of working-class Democrat voters.

                • Ad

                  Swordfish, on your measurements you will always be let down.
                  Obama would be too, but only on the strength of his own campaign rhetoric. Not on how he governed.

                  You can look for all the micro-conspiracies and lack of revolution in the streets, but President Obama can be summed up like this: solved major crises, kept things steady, cleaned a number of things up, and left a pretty close to clean desk.

                  • swordfish

                    (1) What conspiracies ? Just business as usual for the US Establishment.

                    Some of the more astute Left-leaning commentators had been pretty sceptical about Obama’s capacity for real change right from the start (early stages of his 2008 Primary campaign). They cottoned on fairly early that he was essentially a narcissist / opportunist (wonderful soaring rhetoric, shame about the delivery).

                    (2) Revolution in the streets ??? You’re ‘avin’ a larf, ain’t ya, Gov ??? I’d be more than willing to settle for anything even vaguely resembling a move towards domestic social democracy and a less uber-aggressive foreign policy in the US.

                    Fact is: Obama unnecessarily made the decision to merge with the slimey, corrupt old Clinton camp, thereby killing any possibility of the sort of root and branch change Americans had voted for (no one was expecting it to happen overnight, incidentally).

                  • Colonial Viper

                    and left a pretty close to clean desk.

                    Obama has:
                    1) Tried to fuck the incoming Trump Administration over Russia in these last few weeks by rapidly escalating political and diplomatic threats against Putin, including a massive expulsion of diplomats.
                    2) Tried to fuck the incoming Trump Administration over Syria in the last few weeks by agreeing to supply Syrian jihadists with advanced and heavy weaponry.
                    3) Tried to fuck the incoming Trump administration in the last few weeks by trying to delegitimise Trump’s victory in the mass media
                    4) Left the Dakota Access Pipeline mess for Trump to clean up
                    5) Left the Guantanamo Bay mess for Trump to clean up
                    6) Put $10 trillion dollars on the Federal debt for Trump to clean up
                    7) Attempted to box Trump in over Iran by signing big corporate deals with Tehran.
                    8) Left a mess of persecuted whistleblowers for Trump to clean up including Assange stuck in the Ecuadorian Embassy.
                    9) Left fucked up expensive out of control Pentagon projects for Trump to clean up including the F-35, the LCS, the Zumwalt class destroyers
                    10) Put thousands of new boots on Iraqi ground to try and sort out Mosul, a mess that Trump now has to clean up
                    11) Left more than half a dozen ongoing drone wars for Trump to clean up
                    12) Allowed China to build huge new military islands in the South China Sea for Trump to clean up
                    13) Allowed workforce participation rates to drop to the lowest levels in decades for Trump to clean up.
                    14) CO2 levels now up to 405ppm under Obama and rising


  18. greywarshark 19

    radionz this afternoon alexei sayle – the mouthpiece for today.

  19. Morrissey 21

    Kimberlee Downs is the latest in a lamentable list of sports know-nothings.
    Trouble is, she’s been given the job of reporting on the ASB Tennis Open.

    TV1 News, 6:40 p.m., Tuesday 3 December 2017

    That Television New Zealand is fronting its sports news with people who know little or nothing about sports will come as no surprise to long-suffering viewers who have been obliged for decades to put up with the likes of Tony Veitch, Martin Devlin, Andrew Saveloy, and Jenny-May Coffin [1] making inane and ignorant comments before throwing to the weather or engaging in ten seconds of excruciating banter with Simon Dallow.

    Certainly no one expects sports commentators to be rocket scientists, but surely we have the right to expect them to know at least SOMETHING about sports? On tonight’s sports round-up, something called Kimberlee Downs announced, with the cheerful certainty of the hopelessly ignorant, that Serena Williams is “the most famous tennis player to ever appear in Auckland.”

    Now, New Zealand tennis fans will know that Auckland has hosted many, many famous players, many of them arguably at least as famous as Serena Williams. The New Zealand Open at Stanley Street has hosted, among others, Rod Laver, Pancho Gonzales, Tony Roche, Roy Emerson, Arthur Ashe, John Newcombe, Ken Rosewall, Bjorn Borg, Roger Federer (he lost in the first round in 2000), Ann Jones, Billie Jean King, Rosie Casals, Margaret Court, Evonne Goolagong, …. the list, full of people that Kimberlee Downs has no doubt never heard of, could go on for ages.

    There will be lots of people at TVNZ who know at least something about tennis. So why is Kimberlee Downs, who obviously knows nothing, given the job?

    [1] /open-mike-26072015/#comment-1049930

    • James Thrace 21.1

      You forgot Anna Kournikova.

      Probably the most famous tennis player ever.

      The breathless proclamations of the young are lost on the old.

      Williams is the most famous, now.

      Kournikova was in the same position in 2002 when she was here.

      In 2028 it’ll be someone else who will be “the most famous” which will be estatically stated by a completely different young thing on the TV news.

      If TV news even still exists in 2028.

      • Colonial Viper 21.1.1

        It barely exists in 2017

      • Morrissey 21.1.2

        I certainly have not forgotten when Anna Kournikova came here for the 2002 event. Thanks for the reminder, James.

        The way she was treated here was a disgrace, from the dismal sexist marketing of her—a television ad showing porn-style slo-mo close-ups of her legs and breasts, interspersed with young males salivating—to the press conference which featured Television One’s Tony Veitch being manhandled out, giggling. That display of idiocy prompted sports commentator John Dybvig (one of the few in NZ with a discernible intellect) to remark: “Tony Veitch is nothing but an asshole.”

  20. greg 22

    take a look at this chart from the telegraph nz tops the list for most expensive houses

  21. greg 24

    i wonder how many over leveraged home owners are going to start howling about there debts

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    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to Why do people still think climate change isn’t real? David ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    7 days ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
    The Zero Carbon Bill is due back from select committee in two weeks, and will likely pass its final stages in November. So naturally, farmers are planning a hate-march against it. But they're not just demanding lower methane targets so they can keep on destroying the planet; they're also demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    7 days ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    1 week ago
  • Another day of bonkers GNUmours (again, sorry)
    First, almost a score of Labour MPs seem to have sent a letter to the EU basically begging them to accept a deal - any deal - just so Britain can get the Heck on with Brexiting instead of being trapped in limbo:
    To avoid no deal, deliver on the ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour vs working class immigrants – again!
    by Phil Duncan In 2016 the National-led government suspended the Parent Visa Category, through which migrants were able to bring their parents into New Zealand.  Since then over 5,700 people have been in immigration limbo, stuck on the visa wait list. Labour is now bringing back the scheme.  Well, sort ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women press statement: on Massey University and Feminism 2020
    The following was released yesterday (Tues, October 8) by the women’s liberation organisation Speak Up for Women. On 23 September Speak Up For Women announced that we would be holding an event at the Massey University Theaterette in Wellington. The event is called Feminism 2020. The intention of the event ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Farmers support dirty rivers
    The government is currently consulting on plans to improve freshwater quality. So naturally, farmers oppose it:South Taranaki farmers are preparing to fight proposed national freshwater changes that some fear will bankrupt them. The Government's proposed National Environment Standard on Freshwater Management, released in September, rated the Waingongoro River as one ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No-one cares about local government
    Yesterday was the last day for (reliably) posting your vote away in local body elections. Turnouts are mostly much lower than the equivalent time last year (Palmerston North is down 2.3%), and so naturally people are pushing their online-voting snake oil again. Because the online census worked so well, lets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The political ghosts of eugenics may matter more than the genetic
    This essay, on the political legacy of the eugenics movement, by Kenan Malik was originally published in the Observer on 6 October 2019, under the headline ‘The spirit of eugenics is still with us, as immigrants know to their cost’. Birth control. Intelligence tests. Town planning. Immigration controls. It’s striking how ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “Surplus” again
    Another year, and the government has announced another enormous government "surplus". And just like last year, its nothing of the sort. When we have people homeless and sick and hungry, when we have schools and hospitals still falling down, when we have underpaid public servants and infrastucture unmaintained or unbuilt, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Inside the Downing Street bunker
    James Forsyth at The Spectator (I know, I know) has tapped one of his contacts inside Number Ten for an insight into the Johnson administration's thinking and strategy.It is fascinating, unsettling and quite, quite mad.  Some key points:Negotiations have stalled and the Johnson administration are keen to blame the EU: ...
    1 week ago
  • Taking Control Of The Nation’s Story.
    Fatal Contact: With the arrival of captain James Cook in October 1769, the islands of what would become New Zealand ceased to be the preserve of Polynesian navigators and settlers and became a part of both the world’s map and the world’s history.THE MAORI NATIONALIST assault upon the historical meaning ...
    1 week ago
  • Are GNUs extinct?
    Another round of tactical talks about forming a Government of National Unity have come to nothing with the Liberal Democrats still refusing countenance putting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street:Opposition talks on Monday made little headway over when to try and vote down Boris Johnson's government and who might succeed him as ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour chickens out again
    When the government was elected, it promised to lead the way on electric vehicles, and specifically to make the government vehicle fleet emissions-free where-practicable by 2025.They lied:There are 15,473 vehicles in the government fleet and only 78 are electric. When the coalition Government came into power in late 2017, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Transgender extremism, violence at work against feminist meeting at British Labour Party conference
    by Nick Rogers The debate around the meaning of sex and gender made an appearance at this year’s British Labour Party conference in Brighton. Women’s Place UK – an organisation that questions the demand that biological males who self-identify as woman should have access to women’s spaces, to all-women shortlists, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Rebelling in Wellington
    Yesterday I went down to Wellington to participate in the Extinction Rebellion protest. Its part of the latest global wave of XR actions, with actions happening all over the world. Some of those protests are massively disruptive: in Canada, XR is blocking major bridges, stopping people from getting to work. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘The Workshop’ – Report: Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform: A Guide to Strategies that ...
    The Workshop is a charitable trust for public good. The Workshop undertake research to find ways of communicating that will build support for the solutions that work to solve complex social and environmental problems. See their Report on Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform below. ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Exclusive language
    What is language? We generally assume that it a facility unique to humans, allowing us to share what’s in and on our minds. We can tell of our plans, our past exploits, our knowledge. It also allows us to lie. And yet there are vast numbers of people we can’t ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    1 week ago
  • April 2018 – Submission to the NZ Govt Tax Working Group
    You can read our submission HERE ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • 2018 – Submission to the NZ Government Tax Working Group
    Read our submission here ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Guardian: Poll shows DISASTER for Corbyn and the End of Times
    The Guardian - ever eager to forewarn of doom and disaster on the left - are leading with a new poll from Opinium, which puts the Conservatives 15% clear of Labour.Con 38% +2Lab 23% -1Lib Dem 15% -5Brexit 12% +1Green 4% +2This isn't good news, and it would be very ...
    1 week ago
  • How prostitution became the world’s most modern profession
    Being and Being Bought (Spinifex Press, 2013) by Kajsa Ekis Ekman  A synopsis and commentary of Chapters 1-2 by Daphna Whitmore Ekman, a Swedish journalist and critic, brings together a Marxist and feminist analysis of prostitution and surrogacy in this groundbreaking book She opens the discussion with a definition of ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Clever legal fellow on Scottish challenge to Brexit
    I make no claims to having much legal knowledge,  so I defer to those trained in this area.I am very much enjoying this twitter stream from m'learned friend in Edinburgh, deciphering the legal arguments around the Scottish court challenge to Boris Johnson, based on the charmingly obscure principle of Nobile ...
    2 weeks ago
  • An Open Letter From Closed Minds.
    Ivory Folly? The University of Auckland’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stuart McCutcheon, upheld the right of the radical nationalist group, Action Zealandia to exercise their freedom of speech – not matter how distasteful that speech might be. A wiser community of students and scholars would have nodded their agreement and moved on. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Extinction Rebellion members want to “eat babies”
    If you are not convinced terrorist Organisation ‘Extinction Rebellion’ is very, very dangerous – watch this video at one of their recent meetings. Not only is this obviously mentally ill Woman begging the other terrorists to promote killing and “eating” babies and children, if you watch carefully other members nod ...
    An average kiwiBy
    2 weeks ago
  • The government needs to tell people about the OIA
    The Ombudsman has been surveying people about their knowledge of the OIA and the right to information. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem that widespread:The Chief Ombudsman says too many New Zealanders were in the dark over their right to access official information. Peter Boshier said an independent survey released yesterday on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Join the rebellion
    In the wake of last Friday's climate strike, Peter McKenzie had an article in The Spinoff about protest strategies. The school strike movement is "polite" and cooperates with those in power because that's its kaupapa - its led by schoolkids who understandably don't want to risk arrest. But there's more ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Jermey Corbyn, I don’t like GNU (sorry)
    So, the latest ruminations on the gnews from Westminster (Again, sorry; I'll stop making that pun right now).  This follows on from, and likely repeats bits of, my last post, on the suggestion that a Government of National Unity (GNU) should be set up and then oversee a referendum before ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • About time
    New Zealand likes to think of itself as not a racist country (despite being founded on the racist dispossession and subjugation of Maori). But for years, we've had a racist refugee policy, which basicly excludes refugees from Africa and the Middle East unless they already have relatives here. Now, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Legal Beagle: Vexation, or Something Too Long for Twitter
    Several people have asked me whether a particular repeat litigant could be declared a vexatious litigant, in light of their recent decision to appeal an adverse High Court ruling. My nascent tweet thread was getting ridiculously long, so it became this blog post instead.The short answer is: no. The particular ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Zealandia’s Lost Boys.
    Appealing To The Past: Action Zealandia, like so many of the organisations springing up on the far-Right, across what they call the “Anglosphere”, is born out of the profound confusion over what a man is supposed to be in the twenty-first century and, more importantly, what he is supposed to do.THE STATUE OF ...
    2 weeks ago
  • British trade union and political activists defend women’s right to speak, organise
      The attempts of anti-democratic transactivists to (often violently) disrupt women’s rights organising is largely ignored by those sections of the left most prone to misogyny and authoritarianism in New Zealand.  In Britain, however, scores of trade union and left activists added their names to a letter in July, defending ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Turning their back on justice
    The Justice Committee has reported back on the Criminal Cases Review Commission Bill. The Bill would establish an independent, quasi-judicial body to investigate and review potential miscarriages of justice, and refer them back to the Court of appeal if required. It would be a vital backstop to our judiciary, help ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    9 hours ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    15 hours ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    17 hours ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    18 hours ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    18 hours ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    19 hours ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    19 hours ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    19 hours ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    22 hours ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    2 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    2 days ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
    2 days ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    3 days ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
    3 days ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    3 days ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
    4 days ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
    5 days ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
    6 days ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
    6 days ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
    6 days ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
    6 days ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
    6 days ago
  • Further details of Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit to New Zealand
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed further details on the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to New Zealand next month. Their Royal Highnesses will visit New Zealand from 17-23 November – their third joint visit to New Zealand and first in four years. They arrive in Auckland ...
    6 days ago
  • O’Connor in Thailand to push for RCEP deal
    Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth and Minister of Agriculture, Damien O’Connor, heads to Thailand today to attend the final Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Ministerial meeting, as negotiations enter their final stages. “The RCEP Agreement would anchor New Zealand in a regional agreement that covers 16 countries, ...
    6 days ago
  • Young Pacific people can access earning and learning opportunities in Hawke’s Bay, Otago and South...
    Pacific young people living in the Hawke’s Bay, Southland and Otago regions will have access to support services that have proved successful in helping young people find new earning and learning opportunities. “Tupu Aotearoa is about changing Pacific young peoples’ lives. Our young people are talented, they are smart, they ...
    7 days ago
  • Protecting wellbeing – ACC HQSC Trauma Forum
    Introduction As the Minister for ACC I thank you all for the work that you do supporting New Zealanders in their literally most vulnerable moments. From those who hold people’s lives in their hands, to the people who research technique, technology and trends, your work is highly valued. A special ...
    7 days ago
  • NZ economy in good shape – notes prepared for speeches in Christchurch
    Notes prepared for speeches in Christchurch – Wednesday 9 October 2019 Today’s topic, “trends and opportunities for the New Zealand economy,” is certainly one getting a great deal of commentary at the moment. Looking across the media landscape lately you’ll notice we aren’t the only ones having this discussion. There ...
    7 days ago
  • World Mental Health Day a reminder of the importance of mental health work
    Minister of Health Dr David Clark and Associate Minister of Health Peeni Henare say this year’s World Mental Health Day theme is a reminder of why the Government’s work on mental health is so important. “This year the World Federation for Mental Health has made suicide prevention the main theme ...
    7 days ago
  • Cultural Ministers Meeting
    Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni will represent the government at Australia’s Meeting of Cultural Ministers in Adelaide this week. “This year’s meeting is special because New Zealand is expected to become an International Member of the Meeting of Cultural Ministers at this Australian forum,” Carmel Sepuloni said. “The meeting is an opportunity to ...
    1 week ago
  • 608 claims resolved by GCCRS in first year
    The Greater Christchurch Claims Resolution Service has resolved 608 insurance and EQC claims in its first year in operation, Minister Megan Woods has announced. The government service, which celebrates its first birthday today, provides a one stop shop to help Cantabrians still battling to get their homes repaired or rebuilt ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ economy in good shape
    Today’s topic, “trends and opportunities for the New Zealand economy,” is certainly one getting a great deal of commentary at the moment. Looking across the media landscape lately you’ll notice we aren’t the only ones having this discussion. There has been an increasing amount of attention paid to the outlook ...
    1 week ago
  • NZTA to refocus on safety following review
    The Government is acting swiftly to strengthen NZTA’s regulatory role following a review into the Transport Agency, and Ministry of Transport’s performance as its monitor, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. An independent review by Martin Jenkins has found NZTA failed to properly regulate the transport sector under the previous ...
    1 week ago
  • Joint Cooperation Statement on Climate Change between the Netherlands and New Zealand
    The Netherlands and New Zealand have a long-standing and close relationship based on many shared interests and values. We value the rule of law, our democracies, and multilateralism.  And we value our environment – at home and globally. Right now there are major global challenges in all of these areas – ...
    1 week ago
  • Government putting right Holidays Act underpayment in Health
    The Government is putting right a decade’s worth of underpayment to nurses, doctors and other health workers, says Health Minister Dr David Clark.  Initial sampling of District Health Boards payroll records has found that around $550-$650 million is owed to DHB staff to comply with the Holidays Act. It’s expected ...
    1 week ago
  • Government accounts show strong economy
    A strong surplus and low debt show the economy is performing well, and means the Government is in a good position to meet the challenges of global economic uncertainty. “The surplus and low levels of debt show the economy is in good shape. This allows the Government to spend more ...
    1 week ago
  • Ministers approve application to expand Waihi mine
    New applications from mining company OceanaGold to purchase land in Waihi for new tailings ponds associated with its gold mines have been approved. Minister of Finance Grant Robertson and Associate Minister of Finance David Parker considered the applications under the Overseas Investment Act. Earlier this year, applications from OceanaGold to ...
    1 week ago
  • Tuia 250 Voyage flotilla launches with tribute to tangata whenua
    New Zealanders in Tūranganui-a-Kiwa / Poverty Bay will witness Māori, Pākehā and Pacific voyaging traditions come together today as the Tuia 250 Voyage flotilla assembles for the first time, Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti Minister Kelvin Davis says. “Tuia 250 is a national commemoration and an opportunity for honest conversations ...
    1 week ago
  • Visit to advance trade agenda with Europe and the Commonwealth
    Minister for Trade and Export Growth David Parker leaves tomorrow for Dubai, London and Berlin for a series of meetings to advance New Zealand’s trade interests.  In Dubai he will visit New Zealand’s Pavilion at Expo 2020 where construction is underway.  There he will meet Minister of State for International Cooperation, Her ...
    1 week ago