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Open mike 04/05/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, May 4th, 2019 - 152 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

152 comments on “Open mike 04/05/2019 ”

  1. gsays 1

    Just reflecting on the widely held opinion that the next election is a cake walk what with political 'capital' built up in PM Ardern, engagement news and the kerfuffle around the leadership of National party.

    Going back two and a half years, there is no way the most strident Labour fan could have envisioned this scenario.

    Therefore it is quite possible the same could happen again. After a couple of leadership coups eg Collins, Woodhouse, Adams, Mitchell, a candidate like Upston, Ngaro or Dean, or my pick, someone from outside of politics currently, can come in and sweep all before them.

    The coalition needs to look at their statements leading into the election and put them into action.

    • Graeme 1.1

      OMG…. if they have to resort to Dean they may as well give up and go home. Has that MP achieved anything in 4 1/2 terms. Apart from falling for a di-hydrogen monoxide hoax once.

      • gsays 1.1.1

        Di-hydrogen monoxide reminds me of when microwaves were a new thing.

        Some larrikin sold a microwave cleaner concentrate.

        Put in a bowl, run microwave until liquid boils, wipe out oven.

        The concentrate?…di-hydrogen monoxide

    • Andre 1.2

      Chris Liddell might be one to watch. High flying business career overseas, currently serving the Fraud from Fifth Avenue.

      • Sacha 1.2.1

        Impressive business career. Finance Minister, maybe, but not really the right sort of charisma for political leader. Is probably on track for international roles after his current one so why would he settle for replacing Bill English or Steven Joyce?

        • Andre

          That's exactly the kind of comment I would have made about John Key in 2001.

          • Sacha

            Key was always a self-promoter in a way Liddell does not seem to be. Liddell leans backwards rather than forwards in interviews.

    • Peter 1.3

      It doesn't matter that Shane Jones is NZ First. Any good he/they achieve can be undone electorally in one brain numbingly dumb speech/spiel.

      It's all about the easiest to create negative thing, perception. There is already a 'dishonourable' list with Clare Curran, Twyford, Mahuta, Jackson whose actions, words, for right or wrong, have had the affect of chopping down the tree or at least ring-barking it.

    • cleangreen 1.4

      smileyYes that is right.

    • McFlock 1.5

      Yeah, nothing is a given.

      National might even figure out how to make friends.

  2. WeTheBleeple 2

    The downfall of our ridiculous food system begins. Extreme waves, some > 20m being recorded. Overall wave action increasing.

    Soon the shipping will only be seasonal. Then, uninsurable…


    Off to a tree cropping workshop today. EXCITED!

    • greywarshark 2.1

      So the option of having sea transport is lessening. Our government has abandoned the domestic economy in order to export and then we can buy all the wonderful things available from the world with our export dollars. That is, those in employment at a living wage. We have stopped making things for ourselves.

      But then, because of the reciprocal nature of our trading system we have an open economy, and overseas people who have bigger purses than us, can buy wonderful things here, like houses, desirable land and very desirable water.

      Now we have to decide whether we are going to spend our money buying imported goods, which are no longer made here, or go without – mend and save – and try to gather a deposit to buy a shoe-box or a big car to live in as the housing market prices have been pushed up by our wealthier export customers.

      Is that a wise way to run a country? Even the relatively well off people are finding that the house they can obtain loan money to buy, drains more than half of their weekly or monthly earnings. And how do we supply necessities and have a thriving economy if we can’t export our produce. We will still be able to export services. But the reciprocal system will be broken. The overseas buyers will still come here and buy us up, we will be at survival mode and be tenants in what was our own land. I think John Key was expressing concern about that at one time while facilitating the process. Was it wise to leave him to play his smirking Prime Minister role for so long?

      • cleangreen 2.1.1


        We are being lead down the path to oblivion.

      • WeTheBleeple 2.1.2

        Holy Balls Batman

        I saw a bunch of 18 year old redwoods today far bigger than Pinus radiata at 25 years (when they cut).

        Too big for today's mills, no market (here) as everything is pine. Then there's the people growing natives, too scared to try large scale in case they're not allowed to realise the crop…

        So we can't sell exotic timber except pine locally, we can't grow natives that would sell because we might not be allowed to sell them. Pine pine did someone say pine.

        We can grow far better trees but… crops must be clonal for markets. And you got to have a market. Assessing a stand of a couple hundred trees for the tree keepers (good clones) is a couple hundred thousand dollars…

        Who's got that laying around.

        The market that's supposed to help little guys (trickle trickle) has us locked out. I guess you could grow pine…

        F'n travesty. No variety in the market means no resilience to vagaries in the market. A bug, a bacteria, a fungi, an oomycete, an emerging player, a reticent buyer…

        NZ forestry has all its eggs in one basket.

        • greywarshark

          I had a look through Lincoln University offerings to see what they had on tree diversity. I couldn't find stuff. Pine.. But what about growing for carbon credits. Money for keeping them in the ground?

          And having a range of trees for specialist use, furniture etc, masts; picking them out by helicopter and making big $$ from the few.

          Someone would have to live in the area as they would attract thieves. Guns might be appropriate for rangers in this case.

          There must be markets for other trees. Reasonably fast growing and not requiring the same treatment as softwood, resinous pines.

  3. bwaghorn 3

    The reply function is still very hit and miss . I'm on a samsung xcover4.

    • gsays 3.1

      Hey wags, I have the same problem on my huawei, however when using Brave rather than Chrome I have no problem.

  4. dv 4

    I thought there was there an election in the UK recently. Cant find any results.

    Or was I imaging it?

    HA L ocal sections. Found it!!!

    • greywarshark 4.1


      Final Councils Conservative 93 Labour 60 | Councillors similar proportions

      Note Change on last election: Conservative Councils -44 Councillors -1334
      Labour Councils -6 Councillors -82.

      Residents Association Councils 2 Greens 0
      Councillors RA 119 (+49) Greens 265 (+194)

      So Greens are accepted at grass roots level

      • McFlock 4.1.1

        Lib dems gained 700 councillors – basically doubled their representation.

        Ran on an exit the brexit campaign.

        • greywarshark

          I jumped right over the Lib Dems – meant to put them in.

          They just about doubled. Seemed to have mopped up Tory disdain. Liberal Democrat:

          Councils: Total18 +/-+10

          Councillors: Total1350 +/-+703

          Thanks BBC for nice clear chart.

          • Morrissey

            Thanks BBC for nice clear chart.

            You really are a True Believer.


            • The Al1en

              So the tories get decimated and, instead of being the recipient of a mass of disgruntled voters wrath, labour themselves also take a hammering. Not really the look of a government in waiting.

              And you say true believer lol

              • Drowsy M. Kram

                For every seat Labour lost, the Tories lost 14.

                "Have Labour gained a whole bunch of seats? No. But the media effort to conflate Labour’s minor losses with the complete trouncing the Conservatives have taken is totally dishonest."

                • The Al1en

                  The results aren't in dispute, are they? What is, is how labour lost big and didn't benefit from the tory backlash, casting doubt on their ability to form a government after the next general election. It doesn’t seem they are resonating well with the public.

                  Without a brexit agreement, the longer Farrage's brexit party and the ukip stay in the game seems to be Corbyn's only hope of sneaking in to power at present, by default. Having the lib dems bounce back will take seats off May, but then labour could well lose out in 3 way electorates, and those tactically voting where they are in 3rd place. Not that positive, and certainly not much to shout about against a most unpopular ruling party.

                  Lucky for labour it's first past the post and not mmp, otherwise they'd be screwed with, on current polling, only scoring in the low 30s.

                  • Drowsy M. Kram

                    Agreed, the results are indisputable.

                    If, as you say, "Labour lost big",
                    then the Tories lost big big big big big big big big big big big big big big.

                    • The Al1en

                      Decimated,I wrote.

                      And if labour have lost councils and councillors during that time, then the reports of shared significant losses are indeed accurate.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      If 14-to-1 is your idea of "shared" losses, then bags I get first choice after you've cut the cake.

                      Carry on spinning.

                    • The Al1en

                      Yep, shared significant losses. Consider where labour were losing hardest, take in the big picture, add context, and the story behind the numbers makes more sense.

                      And spinning, for who?

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      Seems you're talking up Labour losses – that’s your focus, no?

                      I’m attempting to provide a quantitative representation of (relative) losses which might form the basis for objective analyses.

                      Labour: Losers

                      Tories: Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers Losers

                      Regarding the beneficiaries of 'spin', happy for readers to judge.

                    • McFlock

                      libdems: winners winners winners winners winners winners winners

                    • The Al1en

                      Well I'm definitely not downplaying labours losses, nor what it potentially means for them going forward electorally as a party who can still lose on the night as the most divided tory party in a generation shart it's pants.

                      So in rejecting the claims of propaganda and biassed media reporting in covering this poll, looking in to the stories behind the numbers (such as why labour shed votes to the lib dems in swings of around 8%), and going deeper behind a banner headline (why the major opposition party didn't pick up conservative protest votes when it needs them in these electorates to become government), I am also happy to leave it to the readers to decide whose spinning and for why.

  5. Ad 5

    Great to see Minister Sage push back successfully on the Waihi Oceania Gold tailing dam investment.

    That will have taken political hard work within this government.

    Given Labour's history in Waihi it would be hard not to support mining in a mining town.

    Tough decision for a government, but great standup Minister Sage.

    • cleangreen 5.1

      Yes Ad but the big issue is this.

      yes we humans are one of the first to be extinct I fear.

      The planet is nearing the end as the Ross Sea ice shelf is about to disappear and our sea levels will rise dramatically.

      The oxygen content in the atmosphere is sinking every month now so how long can we survive without oxygen in our air?

      We daily see brand new trucks on our roads all hauling freight that used to go by rail, increasing the carbon levels as we speak, so we are a menace to ourselves alright.


      Rapid melting of the world’s largest ice shelf linked to solar heat in the ocean
      April 29, 2019
      University of Cambridge
      An international team of scientists has found part of the world’s largest ice shelf is melting 10 times faster than the overall ice shelf average, due to solar heating of the surrounding ocean surface.

      Not much hope for our children now but to flee to a “survival bunkers” like they are probably building up high on the safety of the te-ureweras up in the hills when the end comes.


    • Macro 5.2

      This would be the third such environmental catastrophe in the Waihi area. Not only would this toxic* mound of waste cover over 178H of agricultural land rendering it useless and presenting an eyesore for generations to come, there are other considerations to be taken into account as well.

      The [already existing] two tailings dams near Waihi are some of the largest structures in the country.


      Size of Martha Mine Waihi tailings dam compared to Mount Eden suburbs Auckland

      Should either of these dams fail in an earthquake, we could be facing potentially New Zealand’s worst ever environmental disaster, and loss of life and livelihoods on a significant scale.

      Therefore it is perfectly reasonable to ask the question – would these structures withstand a large earthquake? The question is even more pertinent because –

      • the Kaikoura quake unleashed thousands of huge landslides
      • a new GNS Science report on the nearby Kerepehi fault suggests a 7.4 magnitude earthquake is possible near Waihi, and also estimates that the interval between large quakes is 1000 years rather than 6000-8000 years as previously assumed.
      • the catastrophic failure of a tailings dam in Brazil in 2015 was due in part to a very small 2.6Mw quake acting as a triggering mechanism for the dam collapse


      Coromandel Watchdog have been fighting this crap from the miners for years now. We don't need any more fucking gold. There has been 170,000 of tonnes of the stuff mined and locked up in safes such as Fort Knox, and elsewhere already. So it's already there if ever it is needed for any useful purpose. To get enough gold for a single wedding ring you have to drill though 250 tonnes of rock, pulverize it, then chemically treat it. Such activity now is simply madness.

      *Tailings are the major wastes produced from gold extraction and they contain high amounts of heavy metals (HM). These metals leach out in an uncontrolled manner into surrounding environments on exposure to water or through dispersal by wind. The presence of elevated concentrations of HM in the environment is a serious health issue worldwide due to their non-degradative nature which makes them persistent and thereby exert long-term effects on the ecosystem


  6. Jenny - How to get there? 6

    This is the way to do it.

    The key was leadership

    Fascists peacefully swamped by large crowd, cancel planned march through Liverpool.

    When only a small counter protest turn up, the fascists sensing weakness, will not hesitate to use violence to intimidate and smash them over.

    What made the difference between a small counter protest and large counter protest was leadership.

    A far-right group has abandoned plans to march through Liverpool after members were visibly outnumbered by counter-demonstrators, including the mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson….

    ….“Peaceful people power chased the fascists off our streets,” Anderson, a Labour politician, said, adding that he wanted to “show these people they are not welcome in this city”….

    …..“I want it to be peaceful, but I want people to be out on the streets saying they are not welcome in our city,” Anderson told the Liverpool Echo prior to the march. “Some people on Twitter have said to me: ‘What about free speech?’ Well that comes with a responsibility not to espouse hate.


  7. Incognito 7

    I think that National’s break-point will be when the Budget gets presented to the House. The Party’s response and its Leader’s delivery will seal their fate for the next Election. Even the opinion pieces of Political Editors are getting boringly predictable in style and substance but they still do their job as click-bait <sigh>.


    • OnceWasTim 7.1

      Here's hoping. Nothing I'd like more than to see the current National Party crop to self-destruct.

      Having just watched "The Nation", what worries me is that there's a fair few issues where Labour/the Coalition are not even picking the low hanging fruit (apologies – I'm still pivoting going forward from the other day). Simon Wilson had a point – to do with the interaction between departments (in this case IRD and MSD) and the Ministers responsible – this to do with the case of a rape victim. From what I could see, even under current legislation, this matter could at least be partially resolved even if, as Sepuloni said, there would be no retrospective compensation.

      Then there are things such as worker exploitation (BOTH immigrant and citizen) which could be at LEAST improved by Ministerial and Ministry intervention.

      Then there are NZTA fuckups, insurance issues, etc, etc., etc. that may start to really piss off an impatient electorate if the Coalition doesn't pick up the pace (especially where some basic resolution doesn't require law changes).

      Even IF and THOUGH the gNats are in most part to blame for a lot of it all, it won't stop them from scoring a few hits if some of this 'low hanging fruit' isn't dealt with.

      • Sacha 7.1.1

        It's a failure of cabinet leadership to not make immediate fixes because you are waiting to implement longer-term change.

        • OnceWasTim

          /agreed – even with a heavy workload. And possibly a failure of Ministerial-Department/Ministry Head interaction if and when there are roadblocks – even given all that 'impartiality of officials'.

          And then there's a rabid media to contend with, many of whom will still be stirring as much shit as possible in their dying days, but I doubt whether even the likes of JC would be giving a free ride over the example(s) given above.

      • AB 7.1.2

        As we have seen in the past, when the time is right, even a very mildly lefty government can be taken down by outrage over light-bulbs. This is the world we live in – a dominion of lies ruled over by money.

        • greywarshark

          But the light-bulbs are symbolic of other matters that there are doubts about; they just act as a marker, virtue-signalling.*

          It could mean there are the Left looking down, fussing over every little thing while the parade passes by.

          It could mean there are the Left trying to be the Knight on the White Charger saving people who didn't want that.

          It could be there are the Left fulminating over something, and ready to turn our lives upside down as they did when they brought in the Free-Market and No Regulation.

          It could mean there are the people who are going to make us take our medicine which they have prescribed and no-one we know considers we are even sick, but they always know best.

          It could mean that Labour presses an anti-authority nerve in those who are happy to pursue their own ends and let someone else clean up any messes left. What me clean up. I employ people to do that for me, and anyway others have done it too, why pick on me/us to behave well, make changes that aren't proven 100% worthwhile.

          Examples of possible effects of new light bulb changes. In myself I thought of the cost of buying two new light bulbs at possibly $7 each compared to incandescent ones at $1 each. When people are really poor they can't afford to make such forward-moving gestures. Cut out incandescents and it would be back to candles. So I hoped that Labour could cut its crusading zeal down to what was okay for the precariat working and not working classes which used to be their spine.

          the action or practice of publicly expressing opinions or sentiments intended to demonstrate one’s good character or the moral correctness of one’s position on a particular issue.
          “it’s noticeable how often virtue signalling consists of saying you hate things”

          • Sacha

            Regulating energy-efficient lightbulbs and showers was symbolic of the fundamental changes we need to make for the climate – and we have seen in the decade since that how far many people are prepared to go to keep their heads firmly planted in the sand.

            If making those small changes was never going to have any effect, you might be able to claim it was 'virtue signalling'. That's just a bad-faith phrase from the dolts of the US right.

            • greywarshark

              It was what it was. As you say it was symbolic of changes we needed to make, and that they would not recognise the difficulties that very low income people faced, because they don't care to apply their minds to da little peeps. Fact – fact.

        • Anne

          And don't forget the “Fart Tax” AB when some farmer/Nat MP drove his tractor up parliament steps. Everybody laughed. Such a good joke against the Clark government.

          Not laughing now are they, although not nearly enough has been done about it.

          Labour should turn all that puerile stuff back on National – and those who fell for it – simply because they deserve it.

      • Incognito 7.1.3

        Fair comments. I think it would be great if somebody more familiar with it does a (guest) post on the different areas of responsibility of departmental CEOs, for example, for operational matters, and the Ministers. As far as I know, Ministers don’t hire the staff in their Ministries.

        Where’s veutoviper?

        • Anne

          She walked Incognito. I don't know why but suspect someone or some people here offended her.

          There are a tiny handful of commenters on this site who make a career out of trying to offend regulars.

          • greywarshark

            If we commenters care about what is happening to people in NZ and the world then we can't walk away from a forum like this that attempts to bring matters to scrutiny. It is good if people don't get nagged at all the time, if they have a point they should be considered. But it may need altering when some of its aspects are challenged. The view as to rightness can be different depending on the perspective. If the challenger does not have a worthy point and is unrelenting there is the choice of ignoring them, or uncovering their perspective and showing it as unreasonable. Also sometimes when you disagree with someone, it is still possible to see their greater good overall.

            Those who want to state a case and think that they are totally right, need to stay on and at least hear and have short discussions about other people's POV. Veutoviper is a concerned and informed person and could be expected to stick around not walk away.

            But some I think have 20th century perceptions. These have to alter somewhat – we can't think in exactly the same mode as the past, our future is changing and our approach must also – we know that life may become extremely uncomfortable. I worry as I read stories from the holocaust, from past times; we haven't made the great strides in managing our human life, emotions and desires, goals and outcomes, as we should. Therefore we have to think more deeply, nothing is absolutely certain, judgments have to be made., sometimes interim. Kindness and practicality must be hand in hand. For everyone who gives up, there are a thousand who will never understand that particular POV, and vice versa. It is important for the thinking, to assess their own thoughts and try to understand others who haven't experience or imagination.

        • OnceWasTim

          FYI @ Incognito.

          You might be interested in RNZ's "The House" a week or so back (31/3/2019 i THINK).

          Briefly deals with various powers vested in Ministers and Departmental CEO's and down the chain – regulatory authority etc. which allows for a degree of flexibility when conditions change or in unforeseen circumstances.

          Things CAN get done quite quickly when necessary – as we have just seen. For example: in the case of the Christchurch terrorist attack, visa changes to allow family members of victims to come to NZ were implemented within a couple of weeks.

          And yes re Ministers and hiring of staff (which is as it should be probably), but there are ways and means – Ministers making it clear what expectations are, etc.

          And let's not pretend the old nudge nudge wink wink shit hasn't been happening – especially during the gNat's last reign, OR things like abuse of the OIA system, OR the use of Thompson & Clark – clearly unacceptable behaviour for the public service to be involved in. Sanctions are available for that sort of thing BUT for political will and who has been licking who's arse (Sorry to be blunt, but that's what it amounts to).

          Deliberate under-resourcing in some areas (for example) of those responsible for monitoring tertiary education, or visa compliance (James Casson aside), or monitoring the state of some of those immigration 'advisors' suited the last gNat junta very well. Priorities CAN be adjusted in many cases to ensure the sort of shit "The Nation" covered, or exploitation doesn't/didn't happen.

          • Incognito

            Thanks, I might have a look later although I’m keen to write a post (on a different topic). In any case, I don’t feel comfortable to write a meaningful post on departments and ministries, for example.

    • Muttonbird 7.2

      That thing by Watkins was a snore-fest. Could have been written a year ago and no-one would know the difference.

      • Incognito 7.2.1

        Exactly! It still managed to attract 480 comments!? Comments have now been closed on the article, but this is why they keep writing these snore fests.

    • alwyn 7.3

      It is a most peculiar article. She starts off with acomment about the donations to National soaring while Labours were paltry.

      Donations in the 12 months to December soared past $700,000, no doubt fuelled by worried business donors gearing up to fight employment law changes and a widely anticipated capital gains tax (even if it ultimately didn't happen). Labour's were a paltry $173,343 by comparison.

      It's once the donations dry up that you know a leader's date with the guillotine is near.

      Somehow this is meant to be interpreted as National are in trouble? Shouldn't it mean, if her remark about "donations drying up" is correct it is Labour that is in trouble?

      Still it is a pretty typical Watkins piece. Bugger the facts. She loves Ardern.

  8. Robert Guyton 8

    Harp music 🙂

  9. Jenny - How to get there? 9

    An insightful view on how we used to police bad behaviour on our roads by someone who knows.

    Makes me wonder whether our terrible road toll could be reduced if we returned to the old style of traffic policing, by a specialist force of dedicated officers with a passion for road safety and saving lives on the road, as their sole mission.


    ….More seriously, Kearns laments that the old cop-motorist dynamic was altered by the merger.

    “Guys in my era joined the Ministry of Transport because we had a passion for road safety and an ideal of saving injuries and lives. That ethos wasn’t carried over at the time of the merger.”….

    …… “Probably just 20% of people who were stopped were given tickets.” The rest were spoken to about what they were doing, encouraged to do better and sent on their way. According to Kearns, the police did not share that attitude, being used to dealing with criminals.

    And what say you liked being a traffic cop? You’d joined up to be a traffic cop. If you’d wanted to be a regular cop, you’d have signed up for that instead.

    Food for thought at least.

    • Matiri 9.1

      I was told something interesting by a friend who was part of the emergency response to the Tasman forest fire and was talking to a top Tasman cop. He said the previous National government had little interest in road safety, their sole focus was on keeping traffic, and of course commerce in the form of trucking, moving as quickly as possible. He is very pleased to see the coalition government's focus firmly back on policing for safer roads.

      • Sacha 9.1.1

        Yes, and that is a great example of getting on with change – immediate Budget action, clear announcement by Minister, results on the ground spreading already. Glad to hear those who have to respond to safety failures are noticing improvement.

      • OnceWasTim 9.1.2

        Ae! And they have this weird idea that double lanes in both directions will naturally allow it all to happen (when the average NuZillner has yet to come to terms with merging like a zip and still drives like it's all a competition, in between checking the latest beep or blip or bell sound that comes across their cell phone).

        Hence we have the likes of that absolute white baby elephant fuckup between Papamoa and Paengaroa (incidentally, where some of the worst worker exploitation, immigrants and others involved in bullshit tertiary education and other little scams reside and where Cassons try to justify their race shism), but where the occasional logging truck, gNat and orchid owner roams free

    • greywarshark 9.2

      That's a good 'wonder' Jenny H. The cops now seem too centred on vehicle crime, perhaps it gets their figures up to the target set; another idea stop high targets and concentrate on outcomes of projects for improvement.

      Also run stats counting all reasonably serious accidents and stop concentrating on the death toll. That stat only indicates a complete failure by traffic police to show care for people and polite interaction on the roads instead a simple end-of-life statistic for the books.

      (An idea – have projects like for a period ask people to drive differently coming to roundabouts by slowing by about 10 kms so allowing others to move onto the road space in the few seconds that a slower entry would provide. See if over a six month period, what might be called cautious courtesy driving would lower accidents, and facilitate traffic movement. Too many people drive at full speed into a roundabout which is unwise, and reduces others entry-openings.)

    • cleangreen 9.3

      Fair comment Jenny.

      I travel the east coast highway two from Napier to Tauranga often and have seen so many large potholes on these narrow winding single lane roads caused by heavy trucks all the time now and these potholes are so large that if you don't swerve to avoid them you will damage your steering system.

      I have had 6 steering repairs in two years all caused by hitting large potholes.

      That is one issue. then there are speeding drivers always trying to force slow drivers to speed up, and that is another problem..

      The Government cant afford to keep fixing the damages the trucks are causing now so we need to see government increase the use of the roads by those trucks, in a "user Pays" policy.

      Clearly the 'heavier longer trucks' HPMV are far too heavy for our light weighted 'soft roads' now.


      • Gman 9.3.1

        all those parts for repairs on your car would have quite possibly been transported by truck to your repairer.

        Trucks are on the road because of customer demand for goods. If you dont consume anything, then the trucks have nothing to transport, so wont be on the road.

        if we eliminate HPMV, these would be replaced by around 20% more trucks.

  10. joe90 10

    Erik Prince tried to train James O’Keefe’s undercover ninnies, but the instructor threw in the towel because the group wasn’t capable of learning.


    • francesca 10.1

      Thwarted young men seeking extreme adventure learn the hard way in trouble spots like Ukraine.

      They don't want to be bossed round by warlord oligarchs like Prince


      Then they come back home…

      • joe90 10.1.1

        Thwarted young men my arse. These fuckers are aboard the wingnut welfare train with O'keefe himself reportedly raking in an estimated $300k in 2017.

        • francesca

          They’re coming from all over the world Joe, from both sides of the political divide. Nothing to do with Keefe whoever the hell that nobody is .

          “Meanwhile, George, an American fighting on the Ukrainian side, described those he fought with as having “the same hatred for Russia or the same kind of sense of nationalism”.
          Could be you Joe
          “Anti-imperialists, anti-fascists, and those on the far left come to defend the pro-communist separatists and defend the autonomous regions from what they see as global imperialism.”

          • joe90

            Nothing to do with O'Keefe whoever the hell that nobody is .

            Then why the fuck did you bother replying to a comment about O’Keefe?

  11. Morrissey 11

    Send those chickenhawks Bolton, Pence, and brave, brave Marco Rubio down to Caracas. Let's see how long they last!

  12. CHCoff 12


    NZ rugby has dug it's own hole, & cancelled out the aspects of the game that allowed NZ's natural talent to thrive at the game in a way that summed up to the display of a national heritage like no where else in the world. The aspects of the game that gave the All Blacks a long standing distinguished dynanism are thrown away and can't come back, and the hole will avalanche in more and more, as can not be sustained.

    Now a diplomatic security risk everytime run on the field for NZ i'm afraid too; an illustration being the prestige to Russia's ( a heavily armed nation) image it's overall diplomatic handling of the recent successful soccer world cup gave it, to the division and acrimony the ABs have associated to NZ on such stages in recent times in relation to the rest of the game.

    Black Ferns rugby can be a new story for NZ instead.

    • Morrissey 12.1

      New Zealand took the 2011 RWC not because of any "natural talent" but because of the refusal of the "referee" to penalize the home team's blatant cheating throughout that farcical final.


      • gsays 12.1.1

        File it under swings and roundabouts Mozza, it balances the ledger for Barnes being overwhelmed on the '07 match were France went unpenalised for a half and scored a try with a forward pass.

        • Morrissey

          File it under swings and roundabouts Mozza, it balances the ledger for Barnes being overwhelmed on the '07 match

          Nonsense. On stilts. He made two errors—he missed two forward passes, one leading to a try for the All Blacks, one to a try for the Tricolors. His couple of honest errors are not in the same universe as Craig Joubert’s refusal to even warn, let alone penalize, the flagrant and systematic cheating by the All Blacks in that infamous farce four years later.

          France went unpenalised for a half

          They did not infringe. That's why.

          …. and scored a try with a forward pass.

          So did New Zealand. Luke McAlister's try followed a forward pass. I recommend you watch the match some time.

          • CHCoff

            The All Blacks were imploding due to another episode of poor management of our rugby talents in the deserved French upset, and it would have happened one way or another.

            The more recent final against the Wallabies was also poor referring but by then no one was paying attention, & despite the rigged deck, the aussies were only a James O'Connor type player break away from over coming them anyway, which isn't surprising given the Georgia pool game would be the poorest AB team performance in any world cup.

            • Morrissey

              poor management of our rugby talents in the deserved French upset

              What do you mean by "poor management"? They simply lost a football match. The French were too good for them.

              The more recent final against the Wallabies was also poor referring

              ???? There was nothing in that final to match the non-performance by Joubert in 2011. The only terrible refereeing in the 2015 tournament was in the Australia-Scotland match. The “referee” was…. Craig Joubert.

              • CHCoff


                If things had gone the Wallabies way in terms of referring in crucial stages in that game, they could have broken the ABs, who they were otherwise clinging onto by their fingernails in staying in the match.

                • Morrissey

                  Fair call, my friend. However, the Wallabies were not the victims of orchestrated cheating.

          • gsays

            That's the beauty of the game, 2 folk can watch it and see two totally different games.

            I see way more ruck penalties when the team from Canterbury plays than my red and black jerseyed friends.

            • Morrissey

              You clearly haven't watched either the 2007 match or the 2011 travesty.

          • gsays

            Heh, it's great to be the only one right eh mozza.

            Try (see what I did there) this on for size…

            "They did not infringe…"

            The video had three different angles and featured statistical breakdowns of lineouts, scrums, penalties, tackle counts, territory and possession. On those statistics, the All Blacks dominated. They had an overwhelming 73 per cent territorial advantage, winning 166 rucks to France's 42 and making only 73 tackles compared with France's 331.


            • gsays

              To clarify, I got that from Wikipedia, wanting to confirm we we're talking about the same game.

            • Morrissey

              They didn't infringe. They defended grimly. It's hard to beat a French team that's really determined. Unless you've got a "referee" like Andre Watson or Craig Joubert.

        • Muttonbird

          I imagine what Morrissey knows about rugby you could fit in a Lilliputian's thimble.

          • Morrissey

            Ha ha ha ha ha! Good one, M'bird! I think you meant to say "could fit in a Brobdingnabian's thimble."

            Of course, a quick sashay through this writer's oeuvre will show you that I've commented on rugby and other sports at an elevated and thoughtful level* for many years now.

            And let's face it: even someone who knows as little about the game as, say, a Herald rugby writer or a Radio Sports opinion-vomiter like Martin "Moron" Devlin or Tony "Boot Boy" Veitch knows that the All Blacks were beaten fair and square by the Tricolors in 2007, and that they were allowed to cheat flagrantly throughout that farcical RWC final four years later.

            * At the risk of being immodest.


            • Muttonbird

              You don't know shit from clay on this subject.

              • Morrissey

                That's no argument, my friend. My record speaks for itself. Yours?

                • gsays

                  Gotta say mozza, I'm with the short tailed shear water on this.

                  I did watch, let alone live both games.

                  Currently I am watching the local derby, come half time and find you are still braying.

                  I reckon it will not stop you having an opinion on this match though.

                  • Morrissey

                    Otago v Waikato is not a local derby. Auckland v. Counties is a local derby.

                    Interesting to see how readily you resort to derogatory language: dismissing what I say as "braying." Have you considered a career in talk radio perhaps?

                    • gsays

                      In regards to being derogatory, I acknowledge, withdraw and apologise.

                      As to blatant cheating, I maintain two people can watch the same game and see two different spectacles. Evidence being this exchange.

                    • Morrissey

                      In regards to being derogatory, I acknowledge, withdraw and apologise.

                      Good man, g!


                      As to blatant cheating, I maintain two people can watch the same game and see two different spectacles. Evidence being this exchange.

                      You saw the blatant, orchestrated cheating by the All Black forwards in that farcical 2011 RWC Final just as well as everyone else did.

                • Muttonbird

                  Ha! Were you at kids' sport this morning? Or ever?

    • gsays 12.2

      And now Ben Smith is helped from the field after a sickening collision in a very willing local Derry.

      Knee hyper-extended and a chin on shoulder contact…

      • Morrissey 12.2.1

        Otago v Waikato is not a local Derry. Nor is it a local derby. It's a game between two teams separated by several hundred kilometres.

        • gsays

          In a competition that spans tens of thousands of kilometeres, chiefs vs highlanders is a local derby.

          • Morrissey

            No it's not. A derby game is between two teams from the same town, or adjacent towns. Auckland-Counties or Auckland-North Harbour or Otago-Southland are derby games.

            Similarly, Manchester United v. Man. City and AstonVilla v. Birmingham, and Arsenal v. Chelsea are derbies, but Liverpool v. Arsenal is not.

            • gsays

              Yes it is. I will follow the example of Grant Nisbett MNZM and caller of 300 test matches rather than yours.

              I note you refuse to use the franchise names. Perhaps a sign of a fondness for a bygone era?

              My exception is the team from Canterbury, until they change their name that is what they shall remain.

              • Morrissey

                Grant Nisbett? He's certainly superior to Ian "Smithy" Smith and Justin Marshall *, but on this he's as slapdash as they are.

                I'm happy to use the franchise names, but I'm not going to accept the extirpation of the provincial names. It's the Wellington Hurricanes, and the Auckland Blues, and the Waikato Chiefs.

                And it's the Natal Sharks and the Johannesburg Lions, not the "South African Sharks" and "South African Lions."

                And yes, you're correct, it's the Canterbury Crusaders. Need to change that vile name, of course, but whatever it is, it'll still be Christchurch's team. BTW, how come the Crusaders never played a game against the famous London team Saracens?

                * I tangled with that numbskull fifteen years ago….

                • gsays

                  Gotta say for me its the Hurricanes as Wellington isn't the extent of the catchment area.

                  I am in the Manawatu and struggled to cheer for the Highlanders because of the large number of local players in that team.

                  Tad churlish perhaps but I am sure I am not the only grumpy one in this discussion.wink

                  • Morrissey

                    Yes, you're correct about the Hurricanes not being only a Wellington team. Manawatu and Hawkes Bay are important parts of the team, and so was Taranaki. And, no, I haven't forgotten the Wairarapa, Horowhenua, Whanganui, etc. But the major urban area is Wellington, and that's where most of the home games are played.

                    Similarly, the Boston Red Sox represent not only the Boston urban area but all of the states of New England. Only a mental pygmy such as a New Zealand Rugby boss would be persuaded to dispense with the word "Boston" however.

  13. greywarshark 13

    Welfare reforms and Max Rashbrooke.


    Opinion – The battles over welfare are in large part a dispute about whether people who find themselves relying on social security are principally in need of punishment or support….

    More generally, as the report notes, there is very little evidence that sanctions achieve their claimed effects of getting people back into work. They are just as likely to force people out of the system altogether or into reliance on criminal activities or unsustainable borrowing.

    In contrast to the harsh overseer model, the experts' report is an attempt to put a nurturing, caring assistant at the heart of the welfare system. It centres the system on whakamana tāngata – "restoring dignity to people so they can participate meaningfully with their families and communities"…

    The experts' report does not, as some hoped, spell out a completely new and coherent plan for a 21st century welfare system. It does not sketch out a fully future-proofed welfare system. It represents big change, not transformational change.

    But then, like most of this government's working groups, Cindy Kiro and her team were not given the time and resources to deliver on broader ambitions. What they have produced, though, is still immensely important.

    • greywarshark 13.1

      And Jeremy Pie – On the UK State of the nation report.

      Social mobility in UK has stalled. In 2010 Cameron set up Social Mobility Commission but it resigned en masse a year after Theresa May had said she would do great stuff in fixing injustices. They said that the Government was too focussed on Brexit to do anything.

      Then in the USA, he decided that Trump promised change and now people have got it!

    • Sacha 13.2

      Please at least add quote marks when you use a mix of yours and someone else's words like that – better still, click the ["] button on the editor toolbar so the quoted paragraph becomes indented.

      • greywarshark 13.2.1

        Oh hell. Now I won't pass the adaptive test for understandability. I'm a failure at communication. I'm teetering on the edge of not commenting here and leaving it to the snobs.

        • greywarshark

          Our world is coming to an end but our sentence construction, our syntax is what really catches the eye and the mind.

          Is this the real life?
          Is this just fantasy?
          Caught in a landslide,
          No escape from reality.

          Open your eyes,
          Look up to the skies and see,
          I'm just a poor boy, I need no sympathy,
          Because I'm easy come, easy go,
          Little high, little low,
          Any way the wind blows doesn't really matter to me, to me.

        • Gabby

          Passive? Or Aggressive? Passive or aggressive? We just don't know.

      • Sacha 13.2.2

        Sorry, I have just noticed that the whole thing was a quote, not your words at all.

  14. marty mars 14

    Good. Let's get the history correct – surely truth is important.

    A controversial statue of Captain James Cook is being moved today from its home of 50 years on Tītīrangi Hill in Gisborne to the local museum…

    A blog post by the museum in early April said for many years, the statue was thought to not be Captain Cook because it didn't look like him.

    The statue is one of three copies of a marble statue that was made for the Captain Cook Brewery in Newmarket, Auckland in the early 1880s…

    He's also not wearing the correct uniform – the blog states he is "not wearing the uniform of a British naval officer, nor does his uniform resemble that of any other European naval uniforms. The uniform has been described as 'Italian' in style."


  15. greywarshark 15


    Any chance of a confirmation that my contribution and a separate email have been received and if it's okay, middling, passing bad, not okay?

  16. SPC 16

    Oz Rugby has an $8B budget hole this year – (not sure when they get this years World Cup money) and face a payout of $4M on Folau's contract if their termination is seen as a breach.

    They have only one option – given Cheika says he will not be selected even if still on contract, refuse to pay him a penny and drag this through the courts if they have to. Even if they still payout – better later than now. But more likely – given he would be unable to play and would have no guarantee of ever receiving any money – he would be forced to seek to leave the contract so he can be paid to play elsewhere.

  17. SPC 17

    The IAAF has a rule whereby women competitors must have a testosterone level below "5" (the norm is .2 to 1.5), for events between 400m and the mile, but not shorter distances or field events.

    It seems as if their rule applies only to distances which only one specific athlete competes.

    Given the said extra testosterone gives athletes an advantage in shorter distances and field events the most (which is why males and females have taken drugs for these events way more often than for the 800m and 1500m) their rule is inexplicable.

  18. cleangreen 18

    Labour's Bill Shorten won 'narrowly in last nights leaders debate in Brisbane.

  19. joe90 19

    Gym Jordan's in for a rough ride.

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State University asked a judge Wednesday for permission to publicly share information about a confidential state medical board investigation involving the team doctor accused of decades-old sexual misconduct against more than 150 former students.


  20. Muttonbird 20

    I notice the new self appointed elite of NZ journalism has decided to freely name the Christchurch murderer, even going so far as to promote him and his home town in backwater Australia.

    What a disgraceful rag that Herald is.

    Edit: I looked a bit deeper into the writer of this promotion piece, Caroline Meng-Yee, and it turns out she’s bee in trouble before for dressing as slain Sophie Elliot at a fancy dress birthday party in 2011.

    Meng-Yee had fake blood on her arms and Sophie’s name tagged to her top, which had a photograph of Sophie’s killer and ex-boyfriend, Clayton Weatherston, 35, pinned to it.


    Seems Meng-Yee isn’t too strong on emotional intelligence…

    • Gabby 20.1

      I wouldn't be surprised if their reasoning is that the inevitable outrage will suck in a bunch of eyeballs. They'll come out with some freedom bullshit and that'll reel in Trotsker and co.

      • Muttonbird 20.1.1

        Reading about this Meng-Yee character made me feel sad. There are some verifiable scumbags writing for publications and the banner under which they publish legitimises their horrible nature.

        She seems like one of those women who gets turned on by serial murderers. Her promotional piece on the Australian suggests that.

        • marty mars

          sad and sick for me

          • Muttonbird

            It's a horrible thought but I wonder if the Herald is softening the ground for a full push on trial coverage where they hope to make hundreds of thousands of dollars creating a circus based on the misery of this malevolent event.

              • Muttonbird

                (e) Meng-Yee is experienced, yet she dressed up as the slain victim in a case she covered presumably in order to promote herself and her agenda. I think the Herald are quite happy to have this sociopath cover the very worst terror attack in this country since the land wars.

                It suits them!

                • Sacha

                  That's 8 years ago.

                  • Muttonbird

                    Wow. What an apologist you are. I'm really surprised.

                    • Sacha

                      Sense of proportion.

                    • gsays []

                      8 years ago..

                      Are you serious?

                    • Muttonbird

                      Excuse me?

                      That reporter was trusted with the coverage of the Sophie Elliot murder. A psychopathic murder by a person very similar in character to the Christchurch mass murderer and she dressed up as the victim three short years later?

                      I guess she'll be happy wearing a bloodied hijab to her next fancy dress ball!

                    • marty mars

                      No excuses for that disgusting behaviour no matter how many years ago. From the link above

                      "Meng-Yee did not respond to Sunday Star-Times inquiries but in 2009 she spoke to Metro about her work. The article said when Meng-Yee arrived at the newspaper she claimed her aim was to "lower the bar".

                      The story went on to disclose that Meng-Yee did not write many of the articles that appeared under her name, instead working closely with other writers to ready them for publication, and that she worked with TV journalist Genevieve Westcott on 60 Minutes, where the pair were nicknamed the pitbull and the pekingese."

    • gsays 20.2

      Makes me give thanks for a paywall.

      Hopefully the amount of times that fishwrap (thanks Patricia (I think)), gets quoted.

      Awful Auckland centric rag that it is.

      • Jenny - How to get there? 20.2.1

        As I have said before: As they try to escape from behind it in an effort to get noticed, the paywall will encourage a race to the bottom by NZ Herald journalists.
        And as many here have posited, the Herald will the most likely only allow the most venal, (like Hosking), to be outside the paywall. This will further increase the downward pressure on Herald journalists as they compete to be more like Hosking.

        The Herald will no longer be the journal of record. That task will fall to free to air and on line Public Service Broadcaster, RNZ.

  21. Gosman 21

    UK local election results was a case of a plague on both your houses. Looks like Corbyn is not doing as good a job as some might like to paint it.

  22. joe90 22

    Forty nine years ago.

  23. Jenny - How to get there? 23

    In face of the climate crisis, amongst our official leaders. It almost seems, that courageous leadership is a forgotten art.

    And when our official leaders shrink back from taking the lead; No matter, that they have no rank, or title, or official position the, leadership will fall to the one who leads


  24. Jenny - How to get there? 24


    The Democratic Party succeed in finding a candidate worse than Clinton.

    https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/05/01/biden-sides-trump-bolton-and-pompeo-backing-coup-effort-venezuela?cd-origin=rss&utm_term=Biden%20Sides%20With%20Trump%2C%20Bolton%2C%20and%20Pompeo%20in%20Backing%20Coup%20Effort%20in%20Venezuela&utm_campaign=%27Beautiful%20Trouble%27%20in%20World%20That%20Needs%20It%20Badly%20%7C%20Your%20Week%20in%20Review&utm_content=email&utm_source=Weekly%20Newsletter&utm_medium=Email&cm_mmc=Act-On%20Software-_-email-_-%27Beautiful%20Trouble%27%20in%20World%20That%20Needs%20It%20Badly%20%7C%20Your%20Week%20in%20Review-_-Biden%20Sides%20With%20Trump%2C%20Bolton%2C%20and%20Pompeo%20in%20Backing%20Coup%20Effort%20in%20Venezuela'>Biden Sides With Trump, Bolton, and Pompeo in Backing Coup Effort in Venezuela

    https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2019/05/that-time-joe-biden-lied-about-his-academic-credentials/?utm_source=mj-newsletters&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=in-the-mix-2019-05-04Nobody does alternative facts like Donald Trump, except Joe Biden

    <a href='https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/04/30/more-90-democratic-voters-want-2020-candidate-make-climate-action-and-medicare-all?cd-origin=rss&utm_term=More%20Than%2090%2525%20of%20Democratic%20Voters%20Want%202020%20Candidate%20to%20Make%20Climate%20Action%20and%20Medicare%20for%20All%20Top%20Priorities%3A%20Poll&utm_campaign=%27Beautiful%20Trouble%27%20in%20World%20That%20Needs%20It%20Badly%20%7C%20Your%20Week%20in%20Review&utm_content=email&utm_source=Weekly%20Newsletter&utm_medium=Email&cm_mmc=Act-On%20Software-_-email-_-%27Beautiful%20Trouble%27%20in%20World%20That%20Needs%20It%20Badly%20%7C%20Your%20Week%20in%20Review-_-More%20Than%2090%2525%20of%20Democratic%20Voters%20Want%202020%20Candidate%20to%20Make%20Climate%20Action%20and%20Medicare%20for%20All%20Top%20Priorities%3A%20Poll'>More Than 90% of Democratic Voters Want 2020 Candidate to Make Climate Action and Medicare for All Top Priorities: Poll</a>

    <a href='https://www.philly.com/news/joe-biden-2020-campaign-fundraising-democratic-party-20190426.html'>Within hours of announcing his nomination, Joe Biden attends a fund raiser with internet and private health insurer billionaires opposed to 'Net Neutrality, and 'Medicare'</a>

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