Open mike 03/11/2010

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 3rd, 2010 - 69 comments
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69 comments on “Open mike 03/11/2010”

  1. joe90 1

    This is good.

  2. Another example of doctrinaire belligerence against the poor from the acting Minister of Social Development Judith Collins.

    She has acted to curtail a practice whereby an interest free loan was made to poor people to obtain a limited licence so that they could get or retain employment. Better obviously that they remain on the dole.

    Her justifications are laughable. They can “catch a bus”. I see courier drivers on busses with parcels all the time. Or if they can afford to drink then they can afford to hire a lawyer of their own. As if …

    Now all applications will have to be considered by the head of the Department. Absolute doctrinaire lunacy.

  3. Pascal's bookie 3

    GOP senatorial big toga John Boehner on the stump:

    At each stop he draws on nostalgia for the Republican glory days of the 1980s, by telling the same joke. “Remember when Ronald Reagan was president,” he said. “We had Bob Hope. We had Johnny Cash. Think about where we are today. We have got President Obama. But we have no hope and we have no cash.” It draws hoots of laughter and applause every time.

    Chip off the ol’ block Rosanne Cash on Twitter:

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      The US is going into 2 years of legislative gridlock now where absolutely nothing is going to be able to get through the senate/congress/President.

      Corporate interests are simply going to run (even more) rampant.

      • ianmac 3.1.1

        Ironically the claims made are that Obama has not done enough. The response? Lets put enough Republicans in to create a gridlock that make it impossible for Obama to get reforms through. Daft system!

        • Lanthanide

          One thing I read a while ago, probably linked from here, possibly in the comments, was a graph showing projected budget deficits. The tea party are all nuts about cutting the deficit, but on the projection it showed that up-front they will cut the deficit severely, but projected out for 4-5 years it would be much higher under their plans than under Obamas, enough to wipe out the initial short-term gains. Crazy.

          Also, Christine (Not A Witch, She’s You) O’Donnel didn’t know that the separation of church and state is included in the constitution. She was genuinely surprised and didn’t believe it when told during a debate.

          • joe90

            She was genuinely surprised and didn’t believe it when told during a debate.

            Her campaign has offered a reward to anyone who can find the exact phrase “Separation of Church and State” anywhere in the United States Constitution.

            • felix

              Isn’t that a bit like claiming that there’s no law banning heroin because you can’t find the exact phrase “drugs are bad mmkay” anywhere in the statutes?

              • Lanthanide

                If you read the link, apparently the separation of church and state really isn’t in the constitution, but in private letters of Thomas Jefferson who had no part in drafting the constitution. Supreme Court rulings are apparently vague on the subject.

                I’m sure with further research all of the claims in the link could be shown to be false, but I don’t really have to time to look around for anyone rebutting it. Of course reality doesn’t matter to her followers, and the press release is written in a way that will definitely appeal to them.

                • joe90

                  Article 11 of the Treaty of Tripoli.


                • Pascal's bookie

                  ‘Supreme Court rulings are apparently vague on the subject.’

                  nah, they are clear as. The establishment clause means that the government cannot act for religious reasons. Everything it does must have a secular purpose. Otherwise, (if the govt is acting for a religious purpose), it would in effect establish that religion.

                • felix

                  Thing is Lanth, she’s pretending her opponent’s argument hinges on that exact phrase existing verbatim in the constitution, when it really doesn’t matter if it does or not.

                  She’s just attacking a man of straw. Or hiding behind one.

                  Either way she’s a witch.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2

        And that’s the reason why I oppose a two house parliament.

    • Tigger 3.2

      Thanks for the link pb. Asshat, love it!

    • prism 3.3

      Ronald Reagan told such good jokes. Pity we can’t have his quality here. When can we close the gap between NZ Prime Ministers and USA Presidents like Reagan?

  4. gobsmacked 4

    Today’s “New Zealand Media Memory Hole” test:

    The cross-party MPs report on smoking comes out today. Already leaked and in the news.

    John Key has made the usual empty, soothing noises, declaring Illness and Death to be Bad Things which he Opposes, because he is Nice. In other words, he intends to do nothing much. The committee report will gather dust.

    If New Zealand had journalists instead of amnesiacs, they would ask:

    “Do you support the current Smokefree legislation (e.g no smoking in bars, etc)? Why did you vote against it? Why did National campaign against it?”

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      If the MSM refuses to ask those questions, then The Standard or other non-MSM definitely should…

  5. prism 5

    How come Crusher Collins is issuing edicts about what WINZ should do? She has been criticising and would like to ban but is stopping at severely limiting, grants for those with suspended licences to help in getting them back so they can gain or continue in a job. Seems a practical use of money if it does that. Is Paula B now out of country learning from the great USA how to run an effective welfare system with reducing numbers because they find employment (making burgers and fries)? Is Crusher in her absence extending her domain?

    Crusher Collins is Minister of – Minister of Police, Minister of Corrections, Minister of Veterans’ Affairs.
    Whereas Basher Bennett is Minister for Social Development and Employment
    and Minister of Youth Affairs

  6. millsy 6

    The next 2025 taskforce report is apparently out today, and suprise surprise, it will give us a nice big dose of more neo-liberal snake oil.

    Apparently the only way to catch up with Australia is to sell everything not nailed down.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      Well, they are trying to sell out our workers, and New Zealanders are responding by leaving.

      • jimmy 6.1.1

        Heres a summary:

        Predictable old Brash, sell everything, raise living costs for everyone but the rich, raise the retirement age, get rid of the super fund to pay off govt debt, mine everything in sight, etc., etc.

        Does anyone have the number for Jurrasic Park? They seem to have lost a dinosaur.

        • Colonial Viper

          Well this environment will certainly encourage young NZ’ers to stay here.

        • KJT

          “We saved the village for democracy. Napalmed it”.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Such gains would come at the cost of reductions in the minimum wage, subsidies for early childhood education, subsidised doctor’s visits, reductions in unemployment benefits and mining on sensitive Crown land.

          So, basically cut the stuff that allows for people to live minimally (increasing poverty which will drive down wages), and dig up and sell off all our resources that we need for a viable economy.

          The expected load of BS from someone who has NFI how the economy works.

  7. grumpy 7

    I see Mason’s child assault conviction has been quashed by the Supreme Court and no retrial ordered.

    Without going into the pros and cons of the case – one thing strikes me. If the miscarraige of justice was so clear to both the Supreme Court and Crown Law, how come the Court of Appeal couldn’t see it?

    • Bored 7.1

      Dont ever confuse a system of law with a system of justice.

    • ianmac 7.2

      With-held because of the conflation of two charges. Had they been tried separately he almost certainly would have not “got off.”

  8. Pascal's bookie 8

    Intresting exit poll:

    Voters think the economy’s a wreck…but who’s to blame? Thirty-five percent of voters in early exit polls pin the blame on Wall Street. The next name on the list: former President Bush – 29 percent point their fingers in his direction. President Obama follows, at 24 percent.

    Just 35 percent of voters think the country’s on the right track, to 62 percent who think things are heading in the wrong direction. They’re not quite as pessimistic as they were just two years ago, when those numbers were 21 and 74 percent – but angrier than they were back in 2006, when 41 percent felt the nation was on the right track, to 55 percent who said they were headed in the wrong direction.

    and they are electiing tea baggers. It’s a fucked up world we live in these days.

    • Bored 8.1

      Maybe a sign that the population of the world are very very confused…the established orthodoxies are being seen to fail, people see the stars out of alignment. The MSM as maid servants of the powers that be can no longer uphold the illusions. Replacing failed prophets with false prophets is likely to be the order of the day until there is clarity.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1

        Or war – which is most likely.

        • Bored

          The false prophets will lead to war and any other number of places, they will likely be focused on power and blame for those things seen as wrong and in need of sacrificial retribution.

  9. Pascal's bookie 9

    I am not a witch. I am also not a senator.

    • joe90 9.1


      • gobsmacked 9.1.1

        O’Donnell’s defeat was pretty much the only thing that didn’t go the way of the crazies today. There’s a new Senator in West Virginia who’s pro-gun, pro-pollution, anti-abortion, anti-healthcare reform … and he won.

        But actually, that’s the good news. He’s a Democrat.

        NZ Politicians, transplanted to the USA:

        John Key – mainstream Democrat.
        Phil Goff – liberal Democrat, defeated in primary.
        Rodney Hide – “moderate” Republican, defeated in primary by Tea Party, for being insufficiently insane.
        Russel Norman – fled to Canada.
        Hone Harawira – in jail.

  10. Joe Bloggs 10

    Phil Goff is surely not serious when he says the abolition of gift duty is a tax cut by stealth for the wealthiest? Spend $70m in compliance costs and $900k in direct costs to collect $1.6m? You gotta be kidding!

    Still, it’s good to see Phil back out of hiding after the Hobbit

  11. Irascible 11

    Don Brash has revealed the NACT policy basis for 2010 and beyond with these recommendations:
    Mr Brash says governments need to stop “playing at business” and allow the market to encourage growth and innovation, and “weed out failures”.

    “It is critical to re-establish the mindset that markets, not governments, create wealth best.”

    In the report, Mr Brash has made 35 recommendations he says will reduce the wage gap with Australia.

    Some of the standout reforms he calls for include:

    * Reducing government spending to 29 percent of GDP by 2012/2013. New Zealand’s Government spending as a proportion of GDP is 38.9 percent. Six OECD countries spend less than us – including the US, Spain and Japan. Twenty OECD countries spend more than us including the UK, Germany and Sweden.

    * Labour market reform should include reducing the minimum wage to 1999 ratios and extending the 90-day probationary period for employees to a year.

    * “Ambitious” welfare reform should be undertaken to reduce the number of people of working age receiving welfare benefits. As of September this year 65,281 people were claiming unemployment benefits.

    * The retirement age should increase “progressively” to lower the future costs of New Zealand Superannuation.

    * Universal subsidies for doctor’s visits and prescriptions should be abolished and instead be related to income status or health of the individual.

    * Subsidies for Early Childhood Education introduced since 2005 should be reversed.

    * The National Government announced cuts to the funding for 20 hours of free early childhood education this week. $480 million is being cut from this sector over the next four years.

    * Fee caps on University fees should be removed and market-based interest rates reintroduced for student loans.

    * Average tax rates should come down – Mr Brash’s team estimate that with Government spending at 29 percent of GDP the maximum personal tax rate, company and trust tax rates could all be reduced to 20 percent.

    * All Government owned businesses which operate in a market where competition is actual or feasible should be sold.

    * The New Zealand Superannuation Fund should be wound up and assets used to pay off Government debt.

    * Congestion charging should be introduced to Auckland and other city centres where a cost benefit analysis supports doing so.

    * Mining on sensitive Crown-owned land should be permitted as long as it is supported by cost-benefit analysis.

    * Restrictions on foreign investment should be loosened.

    If these aren\’t a resurrection of discredited and patented policies designed to gut a country and ready it for asset stripping and an even further descent into client state status signalled with the sale of our Employment law to Warner Bros then I don’t know what are.

    • KJT 11.1

      If it does not work? do more of the same!.

    • Colonial Viper 11.2

      Labour has a very clear platform of differentiation now. Markets are desirable and needed in some areas. In others, they are very limited in use, shown to be prone to failure and extremely undesirable.

      • Joe Bloggs 11.2.1

        let’s just clarify that last comment … markets are desirable and needed, and prone to failure and undesirable?

        Yup that’s a great platform of differentiation – great policy on the hoof there, CV…

        • Draco T Bastard

          ^^ Another RWNJ showing their complete stupidity.

        • felix


          If you think you can clarify a statement by removing all of the qualifying elements then you’re going to have a really hard time establishing communication with sentient beings.

    • Draco T Bastard 11.3

      Sounds like a plan to really fuck the economy.

  12. rod 12

    Lockwood Smith does a U-turn. Mickey Mouse is alive and well.

  13. Vicky32 13

    Did I hear rightly? Surely I can’t have – I thought I heard Fatty Garner on 3 News say the average wage in NZ is $969.00 weekly. I have to have misheard, hey?
    If i didn’t mishear, where did Fatty get that figure?

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      Fatty Garner has just told 75% of the people in NZ that they are below average.
      (Sorta like Kim Jong Il telling North Koreans that they are all warm, fed and content using radio broadcasts).

      Let’s see how many votes this wins National.

      • Vicky32 13.1.1

        Let’s hope people actually take notice of what he said! 🙂

        • Colonial Viper

          And that old bugbear about the ‘average’ wage – the average wage is skewed upwards considerably by people who are on very high incomes distorting the numbers. Its like the average wage of the following 4 wage earners who are each paid, respectively:

          $25K, $25K, $25K, $3.5M.

          Holy shit on a stick, the average wage is $890K p.a.!!!

          Looks like the average worker does quite well for himself then, Fatty Garner 🙄

  14. Pascal's bookie 14

    Russ Feingold lost. Shit.

    He was about the only fighting liberal prepared to put his hand up on civil liberties. Scratch that. He was the only.
    The only guy that voted agin the patriot act.
    On a tide of Rand Paul ‘libertarianism’.

    Symbol-read that shit.

    Otherwise, slaughter in the house. Grayson lost. But the whole damn south was lost so there you go. The GOP continues it’s road to becoming the enraged pharmotropically confused id of a regional elderly white demographic. Good luck with that when the limbaugh fans start popping their clogs. Not long term thinkers.

    Or rather think long term democratic demographics aren’t relevant. Parse that as as you will.

    Teabaggers only did so so in the senate though. In that they could have done better. They shoulda beat Harry Reid but they nominated a nut. Palin’s nut in Alaska got beat by a write in. Boxer won a tough fight in California.

    Village meth heads are all blathering away about how Obama needs to reach out his hand, as if that’s where the fight is. The next two years are going to be GOP on GOP trench fucking warfare. Obama’s presidency will be a side show to them, just as Iraq was a sideshow to the Bush mob. A mere stage on which to fight. If you thought watching leftie libs go nuts at Obama was a sight, watch what happens to any GOP congress critters that refuse to play sink the battleship.

    Won’t be all fun and games though. People. Actual people, are gonna get hurt. Without even mentioning the economy, which is doomed.

    Bunch of judges got chucked out because they ruled it none of the states goddamn bidness what people choose to do with their sex organs. That the state should not discriminate on that account. That got them thrown out. Families will be broken, and ruled illegal. Arseholes.

    But shit. Russ Feingold?

    Fuck. Too soon.

  15. Pascal's bookie 15

    Concession speech from Losing GOPster.

    Not crazy psycho’s so stop saying that.

  16. Colonial Viper 16

    Not long term thinkers.

    Have to strongly disagree with you here. The GOP have openly stated that their main goal now is to make Obama a one term President.

    That’s a plan with at least a 2 year timeframe.

    Getting people back to work and ensuring that ordinary Americans are looked after? You must be joking.

    As for Feingold and everyone else being voted out. What can you expect with an electorate which has been living in permanent fear and no hope for years (save for a few months around Nov 2008). Even they can see the wealthy get wealthier, the banks who imploded the system get bailed out with billions, and the CEOs who ran the ships around keep all their personal fortunes.

    Perhaps they should follow the Righties cook book recipe: reduce taxes for all but especially the rich, get rid of all remaining financial and economic regulations, continue to socialise all private sector losses while letting them keep the gains.

    America’s lost decade has just started.

  17. vto 17

    The only problem with so many fish in the sea is that there is no time to correct the thought patterns drifting here..

  18. Draco T Bastard 18

    Back in the 5th Labour led governments term the RWNJs kept complaining about how much Labour were abusing Urgency. Well, Russel Norman has just released the figures as a comparison.

    The important numbers are:
    48th Parliament: 1503 hours, 148 hours in urgency, 9.9%
    49th Parliament (until 2 Nov 2010): 1145 hours, 310 hours in urgency, 27.1%

    So, in 2/3rds of a term NACT have more than doubled the hours of urgency of the full last term (the one that they were complaining about) and yet we don’t here a thing about it from them.

    • Herodotus 18.1

      Is not urgency abused in the 1st term of a govt?
      I am sure the 46th Parliament had more hours under urgency than the 47th & 48th, as the new govt wants to stamp its authority and the public are more open to radical changes. But then I could be wrong. 🙂
      Also Lab were not confronted with the world ending events and the saving of JRR Tolkiens legacy as we face today.

      • Draco T Bastard 18.1.1

        Actually, it appears that the Labour led government got up to urgency in the second term.

      • lprent 18.1.2

        You are.. There was more time spent in urgency in the 48th than there was in the 46th from my recollection.

        There was a lot of time in urgency in the early 90’s as well. It appears to be a National problem. It isn’t like they try to pass much actual urgent legislation under urgency. Most of it is utter crap like Collins car crushing or the auckland suoer shitty legislation that could do with a lot better and longer debate before they’re inflicted on us.

        Anyone got any idea where to pick up some stats?

  19. NickS 19


    I can so see this ending well, at least for the lower end of the domestic market…

    • Colonial Viper 19.1

      yeah there goes our entire export meat industry. This looks like the Govt and industry colluding to increase profits by one or two percentage points, even though reducing safety margins increases the systemic risks to the entire industry. Very bad.

      • NickS 19.1.1

        It’s more likely to impact on the lower end of the domestic market, as poor meat hitting major overseas markets will have a nasty negative impact on meat exports, especially as UK meat producers are just waiting for a chance to try and knock NZ meat off it’s pedestal. Where as the domestic market can only cause minimal damage, especially with the mystery-meat sausages.

        But yeah, it will probably take a lawsuit or two or change in government to re-introduce independent meat inspectors if this goes ahead. Hopefully though the companies that import NZ meat might point out that this a “bad idea”.

        • Draco T Bastard

          It’ll hit all sectors. If anything bad happens to the domestic market there will be calls from overseas business for recall and the customers will stop buying NZ meat.

          It’s a bloody stupid idea and done solely to boost profits. More stupidity from the NACTs that will ultimately harm our economy.

          • NickS

            It’s coming from within the FSA, so unless National’s changed people in their, it’s likely due to cost cutting and industry pushes rather than from on high 😛

          • Colonial Viper

            It’s a bloody stupid idea and done solely to boost profits.

            The stupidest thing is that any boost to profits would be highly marginal. Yet they are willing to build in huge systemic risk to do it. Dumbass.

            Why on earth do they think that the US has suffered from spinach food poisoning etc in the last 5 years.

            Increasing the risk of tainting in our food supply is ridiculous.

  20. Draco T Bastard 20

    Fascinating stat: Voters who blamed bankers for current economic woes backed Republicans +11

    That’s a copy n paste tweet

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    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    6 days ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    7 days ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Step Too Far.
    A Crown Asset? For reasons relating to its own political convenience, the Crown pretends to believe that “No one owns the water.” To say otherwise would re-vivify the promises contained in the Treaty of Waitangi – most particularly those pertaining to the power of the chiefs and their proprietary rights ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where Money Comes From
    Most people would say, no doubt, that they have a pretty good idea of what money is. They live with the reality of money every day. It is what is needed to buy the necessities of life and to maintain a decent standard of living. You get money, they would ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Banned by the Green Party leadership: Jill Abigail on women’s rights and trans rights
    The article below was an opinion piece that appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of Te Awa (the NZ Green Party’s newsletter) and on the Greens website.  In keeping with their policy of hostility to women defending women’s right to female-only spaces, Green bureaucrats have since removed the opinion piece.  ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The fallacy of the proximity argument.
    Longer term readers may remember my complaining that, as a political scientist, it is burdensome to have non-political scientists wanting to engage me about politics. No layperson would think to approach an astrophysicist and lecture him/her on the finer details of quarks and black holes, but everybody with an opinion ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Where We Stood: Chris Trotter Replies To Stevan Eldred-Grigg.
    Joining The Fight: Stevan Eldred-Grigg's argument for New Zealand staying out of the Second World War fails not only on the hard-headed grounds of preserving the country’s strategic and economic interests; and not just on the soft-hearted grounds of duty and loyalty to the nation that had given New Zealand ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Universities back the climate strike
    On September 27, School Strike 4 Climate will be striking for a future to pressure the government for meaningful climate action. This time, they've asked adults to join them. And now, Lincoln University and Victoria University of Wellington have signed on:Victoria University of Wellington has joined Lincoln University in endorsing ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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