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Open mike 03/07/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 3rd, 2015 - 55 comments
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55 comments on “Open mike 03/07/2015 ”

  1. Tautoko Mangō Mata 1

    Joe Biden’s message is a blatant push for NZ to sign TPPA.

    “New Zealand has never been a more “consequential” partner of the United States than now, says US vice-president Joe Biden in a video recording to mark a US Independence Day celebration in Wellington tonight hosted by US ambassador Mark Gilbert.
    Mr Biden made a special mention of the work the two countries are doing to get the Trans Pacific Partnership deal among 12 countries completed.
    “Our nations, the United States and New Zealand and our people have always been bound together by the common commitment to a more democratic, open and prosperous and secure world,” he said “and as we continue our nation’s rebalance strategy in the Asia Pacific region, partners like New Zealand have never been more consequential.
    “Nowhere is that more clear than in the remarkable progress we have made together in the Trans Pacific Partnership.”

    “consequential” – as in consequential threats of suing NZ by large multicorporations under the Investor State Dispute Settlement part of the TPPA?

    “more democratic”: like people only being able to make submissions AFTER the TPPA is signed and only at the discretion of the select committee in the 15 days before Cabinet can sign it off is more democratic??.

    “open” – as in the proposed TPPA text being available to the public and not just the interested multicorporations and to be kept secret for 4 years after signing???

    “prosperous” – as in the nonexistent cost benefit analysis of TPPA for NZ?

    “secure world” – as exemplified by Iraq where the current situations resulting from .US foreign policy.

  2. James Thrace 2

    I see the press council found against the NZ Herald and their atrocious behaviour against Amanda Bailey.

    • odot 2.1

      I feel that these points were critical in this judgement: (taken from the herald story http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11475095):

      “• The Herald columnist, Rachel Glucina, had misrepresented as PR rather than newsgathering the basis on which she was conducting the interview that led to the article (subterfuge).

      • The columnist’s and her brother’s connections with the cafe owners and the columnist’s connection with John Key were not disclosed (conflict of interest).”

      I have just one follow up question about this: did the herald specifically send Glucina to cover this story because of her affiliation with the PM? Because if so, that makes Glucinas’ bosses as implicit in this complete f*** up of a piece of ‘journalism.’

      At the end of the day, once Glucina found out the facts behind this story, she should have handed it off to a co-worker that didn’t have a conflict of interest. That would have been the professional and non-deceitful thing to do…

      • Charles 2.1.2

        “…she should have handed it off to a co-worker that didn’t have a conflict of interest…”

        That would still have been conflict of interest. Parsing a string of facts automatically includes bias of the person arranging the information. So unless she gave a string of facts to the “disinterested collegue”:

        House parnell
        27 year old woman
        etc etc…

        It would be the same story. She could only have said to someone not working for the Herald, “Hey look over there, that’s a story!” The editor of the Herald immediately saw the problem and tried to cover it up, in real time, what was it… four times?

        If the judgement (is accurately descibed and) says the employers were the Herald intermediary…

        • Said the Herald had spoken to the cafe owners in the early evening and while they said they had thought the article was for all media, they “were comfortable with the fact that they would appear in the paper the following day”. They were and remained the Herald’s intermediary with Ms Bailey, and were supplied with their (and her) quotes so that all could see what would be published the next day.

        Then the timeline of events means The Herald knew what Glucina was about to do before she did it. All the problem was, was that they weren’t smart enough to present the story without breaking rules of good journalism.

        It doesn’t much matter though. The horse has bolted. And if, say, your job at Gilmours is about to end for good in a few weeks, not only will you not give a shit about the finer points of journo-crapping, you already know how people with power lie. And nothing will save the reputation of the Herald now. People who read it by choice are too far gone to hear any sense.

    • tinfoilhat 2.2

      That’s not how I read it.

      From a quick review of the ruling it appears to me that the Press council have shamelessly protected their own apart from a token acceptance that there was a breach of principle 10 all other complaints haven’t been upheld, disgraceful.

      • Charles 2.2.1

        Yep, if you read the “discussion of conflict of interest”, so much was left out, it’s like they say, “We accept there is a foul odour in the room resembling shit, however we do not accept that we are ignoring a large turd somewhere nearby.” They simply shrug their shoulders and say, “There’s no way of knowing what was said by who to whom.” Quite the “investigation”.

    • ianmac 3.1

      Never mind Nigel. Serco is different in NZ. Our immensely competent Ministers would never enter into any dodgy contracts with Serco. Trust them? Sure can! Huh!

  3. Charles 4

    If only we were dogs, it would be so easy to be happy, happy, happeeey

    I only realised The Juliana Hatfield Three had released a “new” album, yesterday. Where have I been hiding?

  4. Molly 5

    Herald headlines: Entrepreneur Mum makes flying visit.

    The article burbles a bit about how a Google executive is a mother AND won an award a Viaduct ceremony last night, in its usual patronising manner. Most wouldn’t even know her name – even after reading the article.

    But, hey, the supreme award was won by some woman called Helen Clark.
    “Kea chief executive Craig Donaldson labelled her a “remarkable and inspiring Kiwi” who was making her mark on the global stage while maintaining close links to home.”

    I’m sure the editors had wished that there was some instantly recognisable name to headline that article…. oh, how disappointing for them…

  5. Adrian 6

    Thanks for the Guardian link Nigel, great read. After 2 months on and off in England The Guardian was such a breath of fresh air each morning especially after the pap that passes for journalism here. If only…….

    • vaughan little 6.1

      the guardian has an interesting history. you should check out its founding story some time.

  6. Sabine 7

    Why would our National Government give this company any more money? How many blind trusts hold shares in Serco?


    The trouble started in the spring. A young civil servant, a fast-streamer in the Ministry of Justice, noticed strange numbers in the documents submitted by Serco and G4S (another large outsourcing company) as the firms prepared to renew two electronic tagging contracts that they held with the British government. Since 2005, the two companies had earned around £700m from monitoring thousands of criminals, suspects and recently released convicts via tracking devices attached to their ankles – a practice introduced by the Home Office to reduce prison costs in 1999. But according to the junior civil servant, whose findings were initially dismissed, they were overcharging the state.

    The paperwork that embodies government outsourcing, the physical contracts themselves, tells you a lot about how vexatious the whole business is. Capturing exactly what the state wants done on its behalf – the running of a railway system, the rehabilitation of prisoners – can produce dizzying piles of paper for even mundane tasks. The government chivvies its contractors to do a thousand things correctly. Private companies seek to minimise their risks, and ensure a quiet profit at the end of the day. Everyone covers their arse furiously. The documents that emerge are hundreds of pages long, dense with KPIs (key performance indicators) and SLAs (service level agreements) and kept secret from the customers – us, the public – whom they are supposed to benefit. Once they are signed, they are rarely looked at again.

    For the tagging contracts, it was decided that it was up to the crown, and not G4S or Serco, to decide when individuals should be fitted with a tag. This made sense, but it gave rise to an aberration. The companies came to regard monitoring cases as open or closed on the basis of letters they received from the courts and prisons, rather than anything to do with the physical fitting or taking off of tags. They billed the state until they had a document telling them not to, even if the subjects had died, disappeared or were no longer wearing a tag. G4S’s computers were set to continue billing to 2020; Serco’s to the year 3000.



  7. ianmac 9

    A very sad accident in Ashburton?
    “A mother and three children may have died from the fumes of a car left running in the garage to keep the battery “ticking over”.

    • Hateatea 9.1

      I saw and heard the Fire Command Centre truck go screaming past at 4.30 yesterday and have been following this as information emerged. Truly sad 🙁

      Last night’s coverage by TV3 was appalling presenting a rumour as fact. I thought Stuff and TVNZ were more cautious in their reporting. This is sad enough without sections of the media making things up or speculating out loud.

  8. Philip Ferguson 10

    Some views from inside Syriza in Greece about the current situation, the important referendum on austerity on Sunday, etc:

  9. Philip Ferguson 11

    Fonterra showing once again that NZ employers are just as bad as ‘foreign’ ones: https://rdln.wordpress.com/2015/07/02/fonterra-treating-workers-like-cattle/

    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      All employers are just as bad as each other and they’re all bad for society. This is why I suggest we move to a full cooperative business model. Get rid of the employers.

      • adam 11.1.1

        Could not agree more Draco T Bastard.

      • TheContrarian 11.1.2

        Speak for yourself – my current employer is great.

        But Draco, if you want to start a co-op work-place you have every right to start one. Make sure you don’t do it at an orchard though – because orchard workers are stupid and pig ignorant.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Oh, I’m sure that a co-op of teenagers would do wonders working an orchard. Great short term learning experience for them. But you’re right – it would be stupid for me, or anybody my age, to be an orchard worker as it would be a waste of the education and experience I have. That would be in the general nature of a 40+ year old person doing basic manual labour.

          BTW, that guy isn’t pig ignorant because he’s an orchard worker but because he obviously hasn’t educated himself beyond what he learned at high school and indications are that he failed that as well.

          Now fuck off troll.

          • McFlock

            Have you ever worked in an orchard?

            Because it’s not just picking and thinning. You’d be amazed at how much folk need to know about the life cycle of fungi, hazmat handling, bureaucratic processes, and so on.

            And then of course when I had a short stint thinning fruit in an orchard, I also had the impulse in the off-time to read plato (sort of the flipside of now where I sit on my arse all day using my brain on abstractions, so tend to have more physical and creative hobbies of an evening, TS notwithstanding).

            I’m not saying the guy is an autodidactic polymath, but I suspect that his role on the orchard involves more knowledge and creativity in a wider range of subjects than being a corporate-trained lower-middle manager.

            • weka

              what guy are you talking about?

              • McFlock

                The father of that kid who got suspended for making that speech about teachers. DTB has a bee in his bonnet that orchard workers over 30 must be idiots, or something.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Didn’t you get the memo? The stupid idiot wasn’t suspended.

                  Oh, and BTW fuckwit, I haven’t mentioned 30s anywhere.

                  • McFlock

                    Meh – whatever. It was totally the most important story of the day to get the details right on. /sarc

                    As for mentioning the thirties, that’s true: you referred to it as “doing the job of someone in their teens”, so anyone working in an orchard in their twenties is also “pretty much” stupid from the world-weary perspective of some dude who was a manager at mcdonalds once or something. /sarc

                    But then nothing ever changes in six months in an orchard, spring is the same as summer and autumn is the same as winter. /sarc

                    By the way, I made sure to tag each paragraph as sarcastic, just so the sarcasm didn’t slip passed your piercing analytical skills on this issue. /sarc

            • Draco T Bastard

              So, I take it that you choose it as a lifetime career then? Just as I wouldn’t and I expect nobody else to either and for the same reasons: 1) You’d get bored in six months because nothing ever changes and 2) It’s physically damaging to you and thus likely significantly decreasing your enjoyment of later life.

              • McFlock

                Funnily enough, I was sort of shit at it. Either thinned too much so the branch was in danger of dying, or too little so it was in danger of breaking and would produce substandard fruit. But the workplace was absolutely beautiful.

                The workers who weren’t seasonals (students or holidayists on the piss at night) did actually know their shit. Latin names and everything, if that sort of thing rocks your world.

                But then the fact that you claim nothing ever changes inside six months in an orchard strongly suggests you have no fucking idea.

                • TheContrarian

                  “But then the fact that you claim nothing ever changes inside six months in an orchard strongly suggests you have no fucking idea.”

                  Of course Draco has an idea, his crowning achievement is managing a McD’s once. Which for some reason makes him think he can insult others for being orchard workers.

              • bored in 6 months and physically damaging? – being an orchard worker is not like sitting in an unnatural position at a desk for hours under artificial light sucking in air conditioned exhales doing ‘work’ that bores in 1 month and mentally and physically damages many, but each to their own. We will need many orchard workers not too far in the future.

              • weka

                Draco, I think you are way off base here. I have a friend in her 30s who loves orchard work. She’s fairly high up the chain now because she’s learned the skills to get the better job, but because it’s a small orchard that means lots of manual labour. This is skilled, knowledgeable work. There are other things she might choose to do for the long term if she lived somewhere else but this is the good job that is available to her where she lives and she lives there out of choice i.e. she’s not going to move somewhere else to chase a career.

                I’ve also known older people who do seasonal orcharding work because it means they can work when they want and have long periods of time in the year when they don’t have to work. When I did some fruit picking when I was 20, the work was paid by how much you picked and it was the older people who made the most money by a long shot. Experience and wisdom outstripped young bodies.

                I wouldn’t generalise from all that. There are people whose bodies get wrecked, and there are people who find the work boring. But you can’t generalise it in the way you do either.

                • TheContrarian

                  It’s not just “way off base”. It’s insulting, presumptuous, classless, arrogant and snobbish.

          • TheContrarian

            I’m just going to leave this here:

            Open mike 01/07/2015

            Basically you don’t shit about the faimly, the man, the daughter, anything outside what you have read in The Herald yet you feel you are justified in insulting someone based upon their job title and what their daughter said. Basically that makes you a fucking asshole.

        • Molly

          … likely the result of hiring and training practices, and a fundamental knowledge of what exploitation is occurring…

      • weka 11.1.3

        “This is why I suggest we move to a full cooperative business model. Get rid of the employers.”

        How would that work? I can think of lots of situations where a cooperative model would be good, but also some where it wouldn’t eg a situation where a single person owns a business and employs people on a seasonal basis.

        edit, would be interested to know how the orchard one would work too. Is that a cooperatively run team that gets contracted into whatever orchard is needed?

        • Draco T Bastard

          a situation where a single person owns a business and employs people on a seasonal basis.

          I don’t think anybody should be able to own a business, not even shares in a business, as it’s little better than outright slavery.

          The business would be a separate legal entity that would be run cooperatively by the people who work there. People brought in short term would have an equivalent say in the running of the business.

  10. half crown 12

    Is this the real reason why Key is so keen on the stupid flag referendum?


  11. adam 13

    I don’t know what say – Sad, just really sad. I would not wish this upon any family.


  12. Barbara 14

    Has anybody noticed lately how The Listener has been slowly sanitised. We now have a lifestyle magazine filled with leader stories about health, health and more health, food columns, films and movies and other useless fluff. Once it was a great read full of critical analysis and information that was really informative. Jane Clifton’s weekly column was pithy and tongue in cheek about the “goings on” in the house with the two main parties and now all you read about is anything but. The media seems to be giving the government of the day a hell of a wide berth. Mark Sainsbury was filling in for Jane Clifton’s political column in the latest Listener and he burbled on about Colin Craig, NZ First and the Greek crisis. Nothing that could rock the boat.

    Now we can have major legislation passed and nobody ever hears anything about it – the MSM offers nothing that is important with their news programmes, the Listener has abdicated its role as well so where do we turn to, to get relevant information which is our right in a democratic country – we may as well have no news and current affairs on at all, as we never hear the important stuff which is going to affect each and every one of us.

    Democracy has disappeared in this once lovely country – I am old and feel very worried for the younger generations as they have no experience of our country when citizens could participate in the democratic process, were not kept in ignorance and newspapers did their jobs properly – they will never know how good we once had it – now the ballet box is nothing but a farce.

    • John Shears 14.1

      Thanks Barbara what a sad story about our wonderful country.

    • weka 14.2

      I stopped reading the Listener quite some years ago (which was a big deal having read it all my life). There was a big change after the 90s (around the time that Gordon Campbell left), when it stopped printing the cutting edge political articles. Much later I realised I was only reading it for the TV pages and reviews and I could access that kind of content online. It’s a magazine for people that like Jim Mora and The Panel 😉 (i.e. it suits people who want their middle class values or prejudices affirmed).

      I did notice something recently about the music reviewers leaving because they were being told what to write.

    • Anne 14.3

      Now we can have major legislation passed and nobody ever hears anything about it – the MSM offers nothing that is important with their news programmes… we may as well have no news and current affairs on at all, as we never hear the important stuff which is going to affect each and every one of us.

      Absolutely Barbara. I stopped reading The Listener a long time ago because of the obvious bias and sanitation. In the past couple of months it has been particularly noticeable that the MSM, in all its forms, appear to be avoiding contentious political issues or reporting on them in a weak and non-informative way. And this at a time when we have been confronted by one government initiated scandal after another!

      I have also thought about commenting here because my “conspiracy detector” is getting very twitchy. What is going on? Is the MSM being overtly or perhaps covertly threatened in some way? Only yesterday there was talk on this site about the fact a couple of major news outlets in NZ have received “threatening letters” about a certain issue which has links to an arm of government. It does not auger well for the health of our democracy.

      Edit: Just noticed weka’s comment: blockquote>I did notice something recently about the music reviewers leaving because they were being told what to write.

      This is what I suspect is happening. The journos and reporters are being told what… and what not to say.

      • Anne 14.3.1

        Ran out of time: Edit should read

        I did notice something recently about the music reviewers leaving because they were being told what to write.

        This is what I suspect is happening. The journos and reporters are being told what… and what not to report.

    • greywarshark 14.4

      One front cover some years back on the trends in interior decorating and I thought Oh no, that’s the finish. Now it appeals to the university trained man, or woman particularly, with conventional middle class concerns about being naice, prosperous and looking stylish and being well informed to match ‘the sort we want to mix with’.

    • greywarshark 14.5

      Keep listening and watching what goes on at Radionz. If we don’t watch that continually, we will turn around and find that it has been given up to the trivially minded like the commercial stations. I love RNZs end of the week funny nutty session at 11.45 am but it is good just because it’s not like that all the time.

      And who is taking part in the RNZ Talk discussions? Really if you don’t try to be involved in what is good, it won’t stay around and wait for you. If you don’t know how to access it, ask and I’ll explain how I do it. It is a new venture for them, and the more used, the more it will be kept and make Radionz stronger.

  13. Penny Brright 15

    PROTEST! 4 July Independence from USA / TPPA CORPORATE CONTROL of NZ!

    Send US Vice-President Joe Biden back a message he cannot ignore!

    US Vice-President Joe Biden has sent an unprecedented
    message to New Zealanders


    Thinking, aware New Zealanders don’t want a BAR of the TPPA and corporate enslavement of our country and our people!




    WHEN: Saturday 4 July 2015

    TIME: 3 – 5pm

    WHERE: Outside US Consulate
    23 Customs Street
    Auckland City


    Please come if you care and SHARE this post!

    (Forwarded by Penny Bright)

  14. millsy 16

    A small town has a big vision to close the digital divide and it gets chopped thanks to petty small minded-ness. Wairoa was going to implement town wide free wifi, which would have made internet a public utility and allowed those low incomes to access this service. But the rednecks poured cold water on it.


    It goes to show that everytime local government tries to build somehing up, they get hammered.

    • Charles 16.1

      “The Wairoa branch of Federated Farmers said it was a service which “should be left to the market to determine”.”

      I can’t figure out if they mean they approved of the idea, process and it’s subsequent scrapping (because it sounds like “the market” determined it was unwanted), or if they didn’t approve of the idea, or the process and would prefer people pay a private company, individually, for everything (their definition of “the market”). I guess we’ll never know.

      • millsy 16.1.1

        Well if it was free irrigation, then FF would be backing it 200%, that’s for sure.

        Meanwhile, the left wing Madrid (or is that Barcelona?) mayor announces plan to reverse her predecessor’s act of naming a public square in honour of Margaret Thatcher.

        Oh I wish we had hard core progressive left wing local body leaders…

      • Descendant Of Sssmith 16.1.2

        It would be a major step forward if all the government funding going into internet infrastructure was conditional upon all areas and citizens receiving a free wi-fi broadband allowance of up to 1 gig per day.

        Providers can then just compete for those who need more than that.

        It would be great if all NZer’s had free internet for everyday use.

        Would be a great leveler between the haves and the have nots and would create much more equity of opportunity for all.

        If I’m not going to hit my limit for the month I quite often take off my security for neighbours to use the excess til the end of the billing month.

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