Open mike 04/10/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 4th, 2015 - 76 comments
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openmikeOpen mike is your post.

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Step up to the mike …

76 comments on “Open mike 04/10/2015”

  1. Tautoko Mangō Mata 1

    Latest TPP U.S., Australia Move Toward Biologics Compromise With Options
    ATLANTA – The United States and Australia are inching toward a compromise on the exclusivity period for biologic drugs that would give Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) countries more than one option for providing an appropriate level of intellectual property (IP) protection, according to informed sources. http://insidetrade.com/

    Burcu Kilic ‏@burcuno 13m13 minutes ago
    #TPP Ministerial is extended for another 24 hours now.

    Burcu Kilic ‏@burcuno 22m22 minutes ago
    Reportedly, Amari told Froman to conclude dairy & biologics negotiations within 24 hrs. Japan is getting anxious #TPP

    Japanese Economy Minister Akira Amari said he had agreed to stay on until Sunday, but this was the last extension possible for talks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which began on Wednesday. http://uk.mobile.reuters.com/article/idUKKCN0RX0OZ20151003?irpc=932

    Good explanation of biologicals issue in this Huff Post article
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rep-sander-/is-tpp-the-most-progressive-trade-agreement-in-history-_b_7461734.html

    • Tautoko Mangō Mata 1.1

      “Meanwhile, New Zealand has significantly softened its stance on market access for dairy products. Up until now, the country had been calling for lower barriers for its dairy products. By Saturday, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key was saying the TPP would greatly benefit his country even if he couldn’t gain more progress on the issue.”

      http://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/International-Relations/Negotiations-on-Pacific-trade-deal-to-go-on-another-day

      Thanks, John!

      • Paul 1.1.1

        We’re being softened up for a dirty dirty deal.

        ‘A push by the United States to set a longer period of exclusivity for drug makers who develop biological drugs like Genentech’s Avastin cancer-treatment has run into opposition from other TPP economies.
        The United States allows pharmaceutical companies an exclusive period of 12 years to use clinical data behind the approval for a new biological drug.
        The Obama administration had previously proposed lowering that threshold to seven years but has pushed a proposal for an eight-year minimum in the TPP talks in Atlanta.
        Drug companies argue that a longer period is needed to create an incentive for developing treatments for diseases such as cancer and arthritis.’

        http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/world/286007/tpp-talks-bogged-down-over-pharmaceuticals

        • Paul 1.1.1.1

          From the same article

          ‘Harper’s Conservatives are on course to win the most seats in the October 19 election but may lose their majority, and the main opposition party has said it would not feel itself bound by any TPP deal that Harper negotiated.’

          Could we hear the same form Mr Little please?

        • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.2

          75% of drug development in the US is funded by the federal government under the Orphan Drugs scheme. It’s around US$9b per year worth of subsidies (The Entrepreneurial State by Mariana Mazzucato) and I believe that the drug companies actually get to keep the IP rights contrary to most US government grants.

          Now, just think of what our own pharmaceutical industry could do with $9b per year of government funding. That’d employ about 100,000 people.

          • Jan Rivers 1.1.1.2.1

            + 1. Yes Mariana Mazzucato also shows that the development new biologic drugs – the subject of much negotiation in the TPPA – were also funded by public money – mostly in the UK. Venture capitalists and big Pharma only got interested when all of the substantive risks were mitigated and the proofs of effectiveness were rolling in.

            She shows that much of the IP claims of big Pharma are in new uses for existing drugs and that the most innovative thing some big pharmaceutical companies do is share buy backs because they are unwilling to take the risks of – the very thing we are supposed to laud these corporate titans for doing – spending actual money on actual research for new drugs.

            She describes many companies, Apple for example, as being unfit recipients of public investment because of how they behave – avoiding taxes, moving production offshore and so on.

            On the topic of the TPPA it appears that there is concern in Canada that people believe the CBC is at risk because of the SOE chapter of the proposed agreement. It seems odd that no-one has raised the possibility of the same risk for Radio New Zealand. Radio New Zealand is not an SOE but the TPPA definition could well differ from the NZ definition.
            http://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/cbc-could-be-on-the-table-at-next-round-of-tpp-talks-this-wednesday-529823071.html

    • Draco T Bastard 1.2

      From you last link:

      No one can calibrate with a reasonable degree of confidence the impact of tighter intellectual property protections or harmonized regulations, which are likely to do more to transfer income from one group (consumers) to another (producers) than to affect the overall size of the economy.
      Alan Beattie, Financial Times

      This is actually wrong. It’s not shifting income from consumers to producers but from consumers and producers to shareholders. You can pretty much guarantee that there will be a rise in Patent Trolls once the TPPA is in force and everyone will suffer while the bludgers take us to the cleaners.

  2. North 2

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11523403

    While I don’t read THIS article as reflecting it……watch out for the insinuation (just quietly) that this victim somehow contributed to her ordeal.

    “Prisoner X could have this…..Prisoner X could have that…..BEFORE she was slung into mainstream……etc etc etc. Hang on, maybe her lawyer could have done more…..blah blah blah.”

    Yes. She might also have respected this government’s advised ‘kaitiaki’ role in relation to Serco’s licensed lust for profit taking. And said nothing at all.

    A la Amanda Bailey. I can see it coming. Hosking’ll be champing at the bit I daresay…..just waiting for the word.

    C’mon Peseta Sam……out of hiding and give it your fumbling, inglorious best !

    • Paul 2.1

      4 headlines in the Herald online about rugby.
      None about the TPP.
      Bread and circuses.

    • Police, The Department of Corrections and Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga were all investigating after the prisoner, previously segregated, was moved into the “mainstream” jail population, then allegedly beaten up and sexually assaulted.

      Labour’s acting Corrections spokeswoman Jacinda Ardern said the incident was “clear evidence” Serco was not fit to run New Zealand’s prisons.

      “After the chaos and violence we saw at Mt Eden Prison, we are now seeing Serco isn’t fit to run Wiri prison either.

      “It’s there in black and white in Serco’s contract that they have to run proper segregation policies at Wiri to keep at-risk prisoners safe. They clearly aren’t living up to that.”

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11523360

      Yes serco are not fit to run prisons or anything – they and the people who gave them this role are scum and… (I really really want to go medieval on these bastards, I really really want to describe horrendous fates for these bastards – but doesn’t that make me like them?)

    • Grindlebottom 2.3

      I don’t think Hosking or any media are going to start insinuating this transgender inmate did anything to provoke being raped. I reckon coverage will be neutral (and probably minimal – more’s the pity). It’s a gross failing on the part of Serco, culpable negligence amounting to abuse. Anybody with any sense could have seen that risk, surely. I hope she successfully sues Serco and Corrections.

  3. Morrissey 3

    OPEN LETTER TO JOSIE PAGANI: SECOND PUBLICATION
    Sunday 4 October

    Dear Josie Pagani,

    Two and a half weeks ago on this forum, I asked you to answer two questions:

    1.) In the light of your support for the destruction of Afghanistan, do you support the invasion of the United States and Great Britain, the bombing and obliteration of British and American schools, hospitals, power stations and churches, and the killing of hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions, of American and British civilians?

    2.) Can you explain your statement that Hezbollah and Hamas are anti-Semitic?

    Could you please respond?

    All the left wants is a clean contest of ideas

    This Open Letter to Josie Pagani was also published on Saturday 3 October 2015. So far, Josie Pagani has failed to justify herself.

  4. ScottGN 4

    Stephen Harper, the Canadian pm has promised that the final decision on TPP for Canada will be decided by the parliament in Ottawa. Why isn’t the same thing happening here?
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/harper-trans-pacific-partnership-1.3255564

    • Tautoko Mangō Mata 4.1

      Canadian Treaty ratification process is basically the same as ours, Maybe Harper is spinning.

      “After signature of an international treaty, once Canada is ready to be bound by it, a document is prepared establishing that the formalities for the coming into force and implementation of the treaty have been completed and that Canada agrees to be bound by the treaty. More formally, Cabinet prepares an Order in Council authorizing the Minister of Foreign Affairs to sign an Instrument of Ratification or Accession.13 Once this instrument is deposited with the appropriate authority, the treaty is officially ratified. At this point, Canada is bound by the treaty as soon as it comes into force (if it is not already in force).14

    • Jan Rivers 4.2

      The Canadian government and public servants have continued to negotiate on the TPPA as if there was no pre-election period rather than following the usual convention of becoming a care-taker government.

      Advice to public servants has been amended from the usual practice. However the advice does say that no deal will be signed until post election but it is still a rather shocking departure from the usual process.

      http://www.michaelgeist.ca/2015/08/canadian-government-amends-caretaker-rules-to-give-itself-power-to-continue-negotiating-tpp/

      Perhaps this statement is in response to the criticism that this approach has created

  5. Wairua 5

    Our flag should be a green mere on a red background, referencing the Maori wars.

  6. Josie 6

    Dear Mr Morrissey
    As you know my politics are from the left and therefore cannot provide you with an unequivocal answer. I speak in riddles, just like messers Cunliffe, Little and Geoff.
    Yours Josie

    [r0b: In case it is not obvious, this comment is not from JP]

  7. Morrissey 7

    “Where do they think they are? Fal-LUJAH!?!?!??”*
    Death toll rises in suspected US airstrike on Afghan hospital

    by SUNE ENGL RASMUSSEN in Kabul
    The Guardian, 3 October 2015

    Nine staff dead and up to 37 injured in Médecins Sans Frontières hospital as charity says bombing continued for 30 minutes after it raised alarm

    A US airstrike appears to have hit a hospital run by Médecins Sans Frontières in the Afghan city of Kunduz, killing nine staff members and injuring up to 37 people.

    MSF said its hospital in the northern city was bombed and badly damaged in an aerial attack early on Saturday morning.

    The charity claimed it had circulated the coordinates of the site to all sides engaged in fighting in the country, adding that the bombing continued for 30 minutes after it had raised the alarm with Afghan and US authorities.

    At the time of the bombing, 105 patients and its carers, and more than 80 MSF international and national staff were in the hospital, the charity said.

    Some members of staff were still unaccounted for on Saturday, and there are fears the death toll will rise considerably. Up to 10 international aid workers who were based in the hospital are believed to have survived the attack. ….

    A spokesman for the US military admitted it might be responsible.

    “US forces conducted an airstrike in Kunduz city at 2:15am [local time] on 3 October against individuals threatening the force. The strike may have resulted in collateral damage to a nearby medical facility. This incident is under investigation,” said Col Brian Tribus, spokesman for international forces in Afghanistan. ….

    Continues….
    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/oct/03/three-medecins-sans-frontieres-staff-killed-in-afghanistan-hospital-bombing?CMP=EMCNEWEML6619I2

    * David Letterman’s nightly joke during 2004-5. Always met with a roar of laughter from his audience.

  8. Jenny Kirk 8

    Morrissey – this is dreadful, dreadful, dreadful. When will the USA stop its stupid war-mongering?
    And as for the “collateral damage” bullshit …… its time they spoke plain English and said straight-out – “we the USA bombed a hospital with over 200 people in it – patients and carers” The use of such language helps them hide their atrocities.

    • half crown 8.1

      “When will the USA stop its stupid war-mongering?”

      They won’t. Their whole economy is based on bombs, bullets and violence.
      These conflicts in the middle east plus the Jews bombing Gaza are, as Arther Daily would say ” nice little earners ” . You don’t make bombs to put into a store somewhere, you make them to use.

      As for the “collateral damage” bullshit, the yanks have used “sanitised ” language for ages. They no longer do precision bombing, precision is something the bloody yanks don’t know the meaning off, They are now called “Surgical Strikes” sounds very clean antiseptic and sterilized. Another term is “take out” a term that is now creeping into our thugby. It is the American culture and that is why I avoid as much as possible looking, reading, or listening to anything that comes out of that sewer.

      • Morrissey 8.1.1

        “the Jews bombing Gaza”

        Please don’t call this rogue, criminal regime “the Jews”. The worldwide opposition to Israel is led by Jewish thinkers and activists.

        Israel does not represent “the Jews” any more than the similarly brutal regime in Riyadh represents “the Arabs”.

        • half crown 8.1.1.1

          Who are they then? They are not exactly Scots in Kilts are they? I am also under the impression the regime that bombed Gaza was returned to power at the last election, So who were the people who voted for them then?

          • Morrissey 8.1.1.1.1

            Israel is a pariah state, it is not “the Jews”. It is a militaristic, racist regime that has been condemned by most of the world. Much of the most eloquent testimony against this rogue state comes from Jews—many of them conscientious objectors from its own armed forces. ….

            http://www.breakingthesilence.org.il/

          • Grindlebottom 8.1.1.1.2

            I think you should be referring to the Israelis half crown, as opposed to the Jews. Jews reside in many countries and do not all by any means condone the Israeli regime’s apartheid and attacks against Palestinians. The IDF seem to be the main agents of the regime.

      • Tony Veitch 8.1.2

        Precision bombing and Americans is an oxymoron! Joseph Heller summed it up pretty well in Catch-22:
        “Did we hit the bridge?” McWatt would ask.
        “I couldn’t see, sir, I kept getting bounced around back here pretty hard and I couldn’t see . . .”
        “Hey, Aarfy, did the bombs hit the target?”
        “What target?” . . . “I don’t think we’re at the target yet. Are we?”
        “Yossarian, did the bombs hit the target?”
        “What bombs?” answered Yossarian, whose only concern had been the flak.
        “Oh well,” McWatt would sing, “what the hell.”

        • half crown 8.1.2.1

          Although I said I don’t read anything that comes out of that sewer, I do read some of the more intelligent thought provoking literature that comes from there. Catch 22 is one of my favorites. The novel is far superior than the film, though I did like Orson Wells (Brigadier General Dreedle) B25 with the white walled tyres. and John Voight (Milo Minderbinder) doing his deals with the Germans to bomb their base at cost plus 10% Fantastic and cynical.
          I also like Major Major Major and how he was named Major Major Major. Just to name a few highlights.
          Brings back good memories of an ill spent youth in Pomgolia.

  9. Tautoko Mangō Mata 9

    TPPA

    Burcu Kilic ‏@burcuno 5m5 minutes ago
    Thanks 2 NZ Minister Groser, we have a new #TPP term; DRI (dead rat index) swallowing dead rats- making compromises. http://ipolitics.ca/2015/10/03/tpp-talks-bogging-down-meltdown-

    Richard Madan ‏@RichardMadan 1h1 hour ago
    Also, chances of #TPP Ministerial talks extending *past* Sunday = slim. G20 Trade Min Summit begins Monday in Istanbul, so there’s that.

    • Tautoko Mangō Mata 9.1

      TPPA
      Burcu Kilic ‏@burcuno 5m5 minutes ago
      Trade ministers will hold another plenary session at 10 PM tonight. Another night of #TPP stakeholdering, perfect Saturday night in Atlanta!

    • rawshark-yeshe 9.2

      TPPA — maybe some unanticipated help from a most unexpected quarter …..

      http://www.salon.com/2015/09/29/the_unexpected_upshot_of_john_boehners_ouster_the_trans_pacific_partnership_is_in_danger/

      • Chooky 9.2.1

        +100 … thanks for that !…interesting

        re- …”This may be dubious but it’s caught the ear of the 800-pound gorilla in the GOP presidential nomination – Donald Trump. He has built a fair degree of his campaign on opposition to TPP, and recently met with Jeff Sessions, a leading TPP opponent among conservatives, to talk trade. Heck, Trump wants to cancel NAFTA, along with stopping any Obama-negotiated trade agreements. “We need fair trade, not free trade,” Trump told 60 Minutes on Sunday, sounding more like Dick Gephardt than a conservative. But he has the ear of a significant portion of the conservative base.”

        Go DONALD TRUMP! obviously a free thinker ( ha ha never thought I would say that)

        …and interesting that Dotcom has also been texting him!

  10. trendy lefty 10

    Hilarious the way this post assumes that left wingers are middle class careerists. No mention of workers (Bunnings, Affco,teachers, bank workers anyone) who are union members, who get the job done as well as being active in political work. That’s the strength of the union movement. Not people with Pol Sci degrees fretting about their mortgage and their career, and what to wear to work today.

    [lprent: I’ve never been part of a union. There are no unions that cover the areas I work in and never have been. Unlike people who are in unionised industries and work places, I cannot rely upon a collective herd immunity. Nor can many people who are supporters of the labour movement. This post was clearly directed at them.

    Many people who support labour movements aren’t likely to be even have the opportunity to join a union. There aren’t any available to them.

    Kind of freaky the way that you assume leftie middle class careerists have PolSci degrees. I don’t. BSc, MBA and a lot of experience on factory floors and running them. I know very few people with polsci degrees outside of a few bureaucrats in Wellington.

    But I suspect that you are just a idiot, and probably a troll. Looking at your comments – you are banned from the post that these came from for attempted diversion. Use OpenMike where this got moved to. You are now being moderated. If I see you try here again, I will give you a long ban.

    Moved the whole thread to OpenMike to discourage similar fuckwits ]

    • Ad 10.1

      This is definitely a post for middle class careerists.

      Hope you can cope with that.

      Someone else can do a post on the union movement.

      • Anne 10.1.1

        In fact the union movement and workers – whom we all support – get more posts here than middle class careerists.

    • weka 10.2

      “Not people with Pol Sci degrees fretting about their mortgage and their career, and what to wear to work today.”

      Way to minimise political concerns. Given that the people who control what’s happening to all of us are likely to be Pol Sci grads (and business school grads with careers to fret about), it makes sense to look at the politics of coercion in that context.

      (you can of course also write about the pressures on working class people to be silent).

      • Rosie 10.2.1

        Lols. I just deleted my reply to CR (I had the identical experience as them when working for an NGO) as I’m not middle class careerist enough. Figured this post isn’t for me after all.

    • trendy lefty 10.3

      Way to dismiss the place of unions in left politics and pretend that belonging to a union isn’t one of the best ways to advance “leftist” politics. And that only working class people belong to unions. Teachers, nurses, medical specialists, university staff, finance and retail sector workers – all middle class and members of strong, active and successful unions. That is one very powerful way to be politically active, have a career, be middle-class and left.

      Advising me to write a separate post about unions and the working class kind of underscores the point.

      If people join unions, or form unions when there isn’t one that covers your profession, unions have more strength, and are able to influence politics more.

      Careerists are by definition more concerned with their individual selves and prospects of “getting ahead”, as demonstrated here, and collective action and strength seems not to appeal to them. How does that sit with be “lefty”?

      Unions members have mortgages too. Stop being such cowards.

      • trendy lefty 10.3.1

        …because…do you get it? People here are complaining of feeling isolated, and vulnerable and unable to speak out. How many of you saying that belong to your union? That’s what unions are – groups of workers middle class and working class, banding together to protect their pay and conditions, yes, but also to protect their professional standards, and to have political influence, and the right an ability to speak out without fear. Why is that not an option for you guys? I am genuinely interested to know.

        • Tautoko Mangō Mata 10.3.1.1

          The people that I was thinking about like the “small business owner” are not in a union situation, trendy lefty. Also the people that used to work for larger govt departments or firms who are now classified as contractors.
          Part of the rationale for this trend was to help disestablish the rights of the workers and deal to unions at the same time. I agree, if you have the opportunity to be in a union, you should take it.

          • Draco T Bastard 10.3.1.1.1

            The people that I was thinking about like the “small business owner” are not in a union situation,

            I think that small business owners should be in a union and I’m not talking about the Chamber of Commerce. They could do much to help each other. Unfortunately, someone would probably get round to calling it a guild which is an illegal entity.

        • Tracey 10.3.1.2

          I belong to the TEU.

          I don’t understand why people dont. In July I got a $23 a fortnight pay increase because of TEU. I pay $18 a fortnight to the Union. My non union colleages go tno increase, so financially alone, i am ahead BUT most importantly the TEU works to challenge the change being proposed where I work, and it will protect its own workers jobs first and foremost

          I can see why some big bosses don’t like unions, but not anyone earning less than $90k per annum.

          Anytime a colleague has a work problem and they come to me (as a former lawyer) , I always ask them first “are you in the union” When they say “no” I say join the union, and they will help you.

          • Draco T Bastard 10.3.1.2.1

            I can see why some big bosses don’t like unions, but not anyone earning less than $90k per annum.

            Big bosses love unions. It’s why they belong to so many – Manufacturing Associations, Business Roundtables, Chambers of Commerce, The National Party. What they don’t like is the small people having unions.

          • Rodel 10.3.1.2.2

            Tracey..Pleased to hear that non union colleagues didn’t get the increase that you as a union member got. It didn’t use to be that way and the freeloaders (Duh. I don’t believe in unions..duh!) used to get the same increases that union members paid,negotiated and even withdrew services for.

            When they complained about being treated poorly my advice always was.. ‘discuss it with your union delegate..oh what? your not a member?..oh well,,’

            • Tracey 10.3.1.2.2.1

              A colleague of mine a few years ago challenged her redundancy. She had not been a union member, but once made redundant joined up. They went in to battle for her. She had a poor case (legally) but with the union she got a VERY good payout.

              I can see why they do it, they want to protect workers but honestly, if you knew your insurance company would pay you out without paying premiums until you needed to, why would you bother?

      • Bill 10.3.2

        From the post.

        Choose union activism to rail valiantly against the rising exploitative tide…

        • trendy lefty 10.3.2.1

          “..and forgo your career arc”, or words to that effect. Not so. You make it sound as if being a member of the union automatically means your career is over. Bullshit, I say. Sure unions don’t always win, and small businesses are businesses, so yeah hard for them to join a union – but is that a new thing? And if you are a small business, you can be left wing by treating and paying your employees well, and encouraging them to belong to their union.

          However, most people in New Zealand are employees, and less than 20% are members of their unions. I hear people say, why should I join a union? They have no power. They didn’t do anything for me..etc…acting as if a union is a separate entity, rather than themselves and their colleagues.

          If you are an employee or a contractor, join your union. Be active in your union, and encourage other colleagues to join. Be brave.

          Union member with a good career and senior position, speaking out, telling it like it is to the Minister of Education. Not scared, surrounded by member colleagues, who know that they, not the union staff, are the union:

          • Bill 10.3.2.1.1

            Well, your comment reads as though addressed directly to me. But see, I didn’t say anything about foregoing a career arc in relation to unionism per se. Hmm, and I was formerly heavily involved in unionism. Anyway…

          • Draco T Bastard 10.3.2.1.2

            I hear people say, why should I join a union? They have no power. They didn’t do anything for me..etc…acting as if a union is a separate entity, rather than themselves and their colleagues.

            That is true and it is also true of greater society.

    • Puddleglum 10.4

      I think many of Ad’s points, in the abstract, do apply to working class employment too (whether or not that was Ad’s ‘target’).

      My Dad worked in factories almost all of his life. When he was an operator of a cable extruder (did that for about 12 years) I remember him saying that he trained probably half a dozen new men (always men) to become a ‘driver’ on the machine – which was the lead role on the machine and paid more than a ‘hand’.

      Dad would apply to get a ‘driver’s’ job but was never offered it despite being relied upon to train the new recruits. The reason, according to him, was that he was disliked by his managers. Why?

      Well, he was a staunch unionist and, using basic logic and his intuitive principles he would point out when management was in breach of the award that they had signed up to or were acting in bad faith, etc..

      Back then – the 1970s – that amounted to being labelled a ‘pommy stirrer’.

      Mum used to tell him to stop arguing with the bosses so that he’d become a driver and get a pay rise. He didn’t, which I guess meant that we were less wealthy than we could have been if he’d compromised what, to him, were pretty basic principles of fairness (e.g., rule of law, abiding by a contract, being honest). I guess you could say he sacrificed his ‘career’ by not compromising his principles.

      He also used to complain about the fact that, at smoko and lunches (he worked 12 hour shifts, sometimes overnight so they weren’t always lunches) he’d try to talk about politics but his co-workers were completely uninterested and didn’t want to engage – they just read the sports pages of the paper on the cafeteria tables.

      He became very frustrated and quite bitter – I guess a bit of an outcast both in terms of his treatment by the bosses but, more importantly, the responses of his fellow workers to his politicised view of life and work.

      I think the same applies in middle class workplaces – and sites of middle class socialising in general. The person who wants to discuss or ‘come out’ about their political concerns is either an embarrassment or seen as an unhelpful bore and, quick, someone start talking about something else – anything else.

      BTW, at that time Dad wasn’t a shop steward or a union staffer – just an active member of the union.

      I think, in general, being political is a good way to not be accepted by most groups, working or middle class.

      At best I think it’s often seen as an unfortunate ‘hobby’ for someone to have – especially if it goes beyond brief and bland comments about, for example, ‘the government’s not doing too bad, eh’ or ‘did you here what [politician X] said? What a jerk/joke/idiot!’.

      At worst – well, it gets pretty tough.

  11. Morrissey 11

    Jonah Hull’s scandalously biased “report” on “Russia’s bombardment of Syria”:
    Qatari state TV is, as usual, repeating U.S. State Dept. talking points.

    Al Jazeera News, Sunday 4 October 2015, 11 a.m.

    Al Jazeera’s biased and incendiary coverage of Syria has always been a disgrace. As the mouthpiece of the ISIL-supporting Qatari dictatorship, Al Jazeera diligently parrots the dictatorship’s line, which is a faithful reiteration of the U.S.-Saudi line, on every dispute involving Syria, Yemen, Iran and Lebanon.

    In fact, it is more upsetting to see such crude propaganda emanating from an ostensible news channel than it is to watch the same words coming from the mouths of Samantha Power, John Kerry and Barack Obama. At least we expect Power, Kerry and Obama to routinely tell lies. With a television channel on the other hand, even one from an anti-democratic state like Qatar, we should expect at least a nominal commitment to the facts.

    Instead, Al Jazeera insults its viewers with “reports” like the one this morning from Jonah Hull, in Macedonia….

    After soberly announcing that the “moderate armed opposition” in Syria—a technical term for Al Qaeda, ISIL and Al Nusra—in Syria is “demanding” that its Western supporters “get serious” about supporting them, Hull goes in search of some vox pop, presumably to lend an appearance of credibility to his “report”…

    JONAH HULL: Do you think Russia’s involvement in Syria will make things better?

    CAREFULLY SELECTED SYRIAN REFUGEE: Ehhhhh, no.

    Then it’s back to Jonah Hull for a few pompous, minatory final words. Summoning up all the gravitas he can, Hull intones: “It’s about the Russian bombing of Syria now, of course. Jonah Hull, Al Jazeera, on the Macedonia-Serbia border.”

    More shoddy recent repetition of U.S. State Dept. talking points….

    Open mike 03/10/2015

    Open mike 21/02/2015

    Open mike 06/02/2015

  12. Draco T Bastard 12

    What a President Sanders Can Expect The Day After Inauguration and Why We Need a “Political Revolution”

    Democrats are as likely to participate in the revolving door as Republicans; which incentivizes them to support and propose legislation that redistributes income to the wealthy and harms the middle class. In his progressive agenda, President Sanders would be taking this lucrative escape from representative duties away from them.

    Not only this but those regulatory agencies which have been captured by industry and finance will be against him. The criminal (in)justice system which has benefited from militarization and the drug war will be against him. The entire pharmaceutical and insurance industries will be against him. The military that wants to be able to fight the Soviet Union two times over will be against him.

    This is why “political revolution” is so important.

    And we have similar problems here as well as we saw with the ABCs in Labour prior to the last election. Our entire bureaucratic system fights against the changes that we need to make NZ, and the world, better.

  13. Draco T Bastard 13

    Woman’s conviction overturned after boss wrongly accuses her of theft

    An Auckland mother-of-three spent seven months on home detention after her former employer at upmarket bathroom ware chain Spazio Casa wrongly accused her of theft.

    Rachel Wilkinson was acquitted at a retrial last month when ex-franchisees of the company came forward to counter the claims of Spazio Casa director, Paulo Cozzolino.

    Cozzolino had accused Wilkinson of taking $40,000 worth of bathroom products and selling them on Trade Me.

    But 32-year-old Wilkinson has always maintained that Cozzolino told her to do it, to get rid of unwanted stock.

    The allegations came as Spazio Casa was investigated by the Commerce Commission for promoting its products as Italian, when in fact most were made in China.

    Right, now that he’s left can we make it so that he can’t come back?

    • aerobubble 13.1

      I disagree, justice must be proportionate, as we are now seeing the quite disreproporate way kiwi are treated in oz. Seven months home detention for the boss.

      • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1

        I don’t see what’s disproportionate about keeping a foreign criminal out of NZ.

        • aerobubble 13.1.1.1

          I agree. You don’t see why politics of distraction exists to undermine your power. Do the sums, when media in oz or nz do immigration stories whose harmed.
          When we throw out a crime they do the same, it all equals up, but its worse for all, as the criminals have families, they have mortgages their kids are attached to their community, when you cut them out, you not only damage them but also the wealth around them. That’s why mob mentality is dumb, you are dumb, you are serving the media distraction industry, you are being uneconomic, u are harming innocents, or at least that would be the effect if people listened to you.

          Free trade is undermined when we make it harder for world class experts to move around the globe, and know they are just as likely to gecaught in a lie. Take vw, some engineer wrote a testing regime for smooth running diseal that out performed petrol, marketering got a hold of it and not understanding the physics got the boss sacked. WE chuck crimes out and they chuck their crimes out and we’ll get the same amount of crimes shared around. Well worse since there ate so many more kiwis aboard and so more criminals.

          Oh, andhen as the returnee come home poorer caught at the I lowest hour, they can thank you for your mercy.

          • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1.1.1

            When we throw out a crime they do the same, it all equals up, but its worse for all, as the criminals have families, they have mortgages their kids are attached to their community, when you cut them out, you not only damage them but also the wealth around them.

            As I said, he’s already left to go back to Italy. All I’m saying is that we don’t let him back in. Hopefully he hasn’t got full citizenship in which case all we have to do is to revoke his permanent residency.

            Free trade is undermined when we make it harder for world class experts to move around the globe, and know they are just as likely to gecaught in a lie.

            Can you define what “world class” means?

            I’m pretty sure you can’t and the reason for that is because it’s a meaningless phrase. It, quite literally, means nothing.

            Take vw, some engineer wrote a testing regime for smooth running diseal that out performed petrol, marketering got a hold of it and not understanding the physics got the boss sacked.

            That sounds remarkably like BS.

            • aerobubble 13.1.1.1.1.1

              Calls to invoke immigration fascism is self defeating, as other countries do the same. And given the present issue where kiwis in oz are denied access to welfare, and are more likely to get caught out by the law, it seems astounding anyone on the left for the reasons above, or the right for free trade in workers or the huge dispropionate loss of wealth forcing a whole family to up root and move. Just saying I think you need to back using immigration as a arm of justice. People make mistakes, they do so at home or aboard, companies lose when chefs have to be replaced. And don’t give me that argument that a person whose committed an offences lesser a human being, or not beter at their jobs, or have kids, or won’t cost the economy if we stuff them up a bit with some arbritary historical boundary merely as they are in the public eye. Judges don’t take licenses away from drivers, so way should immigration stuff up a foreigners life that may take decades to get back. Now if it was a violent crime, then the society that raised them should have to deal wih them. Oz chewing up kiwi born but aussie raised to throw themut is just beyond nasty its bout owning the problem. What would that say about a person if they don’t take responisility. Australia should be taken to task by its citizens.

  14. Tautoko Mangō Mata 14

    TPPA Jane Kelsey’s take on the situation.
    Jane Kelsey: “TPPA ministerial extended another day, still stuck on meds and dairy ”

    “But Professor Kelsey warns that a ‘final’ TPPA that assumes any compromise wording would survive the US political process could be built on sand, as the US could still demand a longer term as a quid pro quo for making concessions on other areas.
    Allowing countries to keep their current 5 years would have to pass the scrutiny of the US Congress and, more significantly, the process whereby the US certifies the other country has complied with the US understanding of its obligations under agreement. Professor Kelsey observed that ‘any flexibility given to New Zealand on biologics to allow us to keep our current 5 years of data exclusivity could prove an illusion at that final hurdle.’
    As for dairy, the chess game remains much the same: what Canada and Japan have given the US is not enough to satisfy the US industry that it can compensate for increased market access to New Zealand.”
    – See more at: http://livenews.co.nz/2015/10/04/jane-kelsey-tppa-ministerial-extended-another-day-still-stuck-on-meds-and-dairy/#sthash.4tzsdjl7.dpuf

  15. Mrs Brillo 15

    On Friday I posted this about the comments on NZ Herald stories, a topic which had previously been raised here:

    “I have been watching one particular story today, so here’s what has happened so far.
    Brian Rudman’s “Don’t waste takahe’s cash on panda porn” was posted at 9.24am. (Presumably too late for the print edition – will it be in that tomorrow?)

    The 24 comments the Herald opted to reproduce are all denoted as having been made at c.11.48am. However, they were not actually posted till after 1pm.

    I made a comment on the article sometime around 12.30 and that has not been posted. In fact it is now 5.25pm and no further comments have been added at all. That seems odd.

    (The tone of the existing comments was pretty nearly 100% against the government. The usual RWNJs were absent, having decided that this one was too hot too handle.)”

    Just coming back to report that the missing comments- or such of them as the Herald wants to print – have now been posted, TWO DAYS LATE. Posted late this morning, Sunday. They’re pretty heavily critical of the government’s actions, but I doubt that many people will now read them. That’s one way to deal with criticism.

    Keep an eye on the Herald’s techniques with its comments. They are up to no good.

  16. Tautoko Mangō Mata 16

    1. One of the aspects of TPPA that concerns me the most is the rules about SOE’s . As far as I am concerned, state-backed enterprises should be able to have public service/ public good considerations and not be subject to forced competition with overseas providers.

    “The TPP is about more than tariffs and quotas, said Cam Vidler of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. He said it’s a rare opportunity for the international community to modernize itself in several important ways:

    He said it would establish clear rules in China’s backyard. Guidelines regulating the behaviour of state-backed enterprises would provide an international precedent, should the emerging giant ever join the agreement.”
    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/tpp-talks-bogged-down-over-pharmaceuticals/article26641388/

    As Donald Trump would say, “It’s about China”

    2. In his q and a interview this morning Mr Key says he can’t say if New Zealand will benefit from the TPPA deal at the moment. He said Kiwis are worrying because they are misinformed. He also says he doesn’t believe NZ could be sued.

    Mr Key, I have just looked at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development paper headed “Recent Developments in Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS).”
    “By end of 2013, 98 States have been respondents in a total of 568 known
    treaty-based cases.” 57 were initiated in 2013.
    http://unctad.org/en/PublicationsLibrary/webdiaepcb2014d3_en.pdf

    You John might have a faith-based belief that NZ could not be sued, but looking at the information that I have just read, can you forgive me for having a nagging doubt?

  17. Tautoko Mangō Mata 17

    TPPA update
    Burcu Kilic ‏@burcuno 2m2 minutes ago
    Tonight’s plenary is over. The ministers will meet tomorrow afternoon but not before. Japan is still hopeful of conclusion. #TPP

    Burcu Kilic Retweeted
    Anna Vidot ‏@AnnaVidot 1h1 hour ago
    tl;dr: Robb sounds optimistic,hopeful, but not necessarily confident re biologics agreement. Doesn’t sound like a man about to concede. #TPP

    Burcu Kilic Retweeted
    Anna Vidot ‏@AnnaVidot 1h1 hour ago
    Robb: Aust & US acting in good faith, “but fact is we’ve got different systems and just splitting it down the middle is not the answer. #TPP

    • Paul 17.1

      We are being softened up.

      ‘As it stands at the moment Prime Minister John Key says the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) isn’t “a very good deal for dairy”.

      But despite that the benefits in other areas are more “impressive” than the deal struck under the free trade agreement with China, he said.

      “So when I say to New Zealanders, look I’m not going to sign you up to something unless I think it’s in your best interests – I don’t do that by whistling in the wind.”

      The much-anticipated announcement on the Pacific trade deal has been pushed back again after negotiating countries failed to front at a scheduled press conference at midday on Saturday (Sunday 5am NZT).

      It’s understood negotiations will continue through the night in an effort to get it across the line after talks ground to a halt in recent weeks over dairy and biologics.

      Key told TVNZ’s Q+A that New Zealand wouldn’t get everything it wanted on dairy but it was about getting something that’s “acceptable”.

      He also dismissed claims that New Zealand was opening itself up to being sued by a big US corporation through investor-state or losing its sovereignty over the deal.

      “Well we’ve had it in four FTAs now, we’ve never ever been sued. New Zealand has never had a case taken against us in investor state.”‘

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/72678881/a-good-dairy-deal-under-the-tpp-is-unlikely-as-talks-begin-to-wrap-up

      • Grindlebottom 17.1.1

        Key: “Well we’ve had it in four FTAs now, we’ve never ever been sued. New Zealand has never had a case taken against us in investor state.”

        We’ve not had a trade agreement before with what’s probably the world’s most litigious country though, have we?

  18. The Chairman 18

    Shanghai Maling’s offer (if it gets over the line) will allow them to decide the company’s CEO, the budget and business plan.

    http://www.3news.co.nz/tvshows/thenation/clipping-the-ticket-on-nzs-primary-produce-2015100310#axzz3nRUQwwik

    Thoughts?

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  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks ago

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