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Open Mike 04/11/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 4th, 2016 - 101 comments
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101 comments on “Open Mike 04/11/2016 ”

  1. Tautoko Mangō Mata 1

    All NZ MPs need to read this paper by Dr Patricia Ranald which gives a fascinating insight into the way in which the US exerts its will in regard to Free Trade Agreements: the huge influence that Big Pharma exerts on the politicians, the tactics used to alter agreements, etc. If the US ratify TPP, you can be sure it will not the same as the one that Tim Grocer/Todd McClay think they agreed/signed after the certification process.

    ….was the announcement by the US government that it intended
    to use the annual review of the agreement due in March 2006 to seek changes to
    Australian legislation regulating intellectual property rights and medicines. The
    US was demanding the removal of an amendment to the implementing legislation
    of the AUSTFTA, moved by the ALP and supported by the minor parties in the
    Senate in August 2004 when the government had lacked a majority in the
    Senate. The amendment seeks to prevent pharmaceutical companies from using
    spurious legal tactics to extend patents and thus continue to charge higher prices
    for their products. The US government also indicated that it wanted to raise other
    issues about the administration of Australia’s Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
    (PBS) that it believed were inconsistent with the agreement and disadvantaged
    the interests of pharmaceutical companies by restricting prices and removing
    incentives for investment in innovative medicines (Lewis, 2006).

    http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.578.8138&rep=rep1&type=pdf

    • Tautoko Mangō Mata 1.1

      This article explains how Big Pharma is fighting to retain its freedom to rip off the public in California.

      “164% price increase since 2008 for brand name drugs in the U.S.”

      http://www.commondreams.org/views/2016/11/02/californias-prop-61-offers-opportunity-take-big-pharma

    • Draco T Bastard 1.2

      The US government also indicated that it wanted to raise other
      issues about the administration of Australia’s Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
      (PBS) that it believed were inconsistent with the agreement and disadvantaged
      the interests of pharmaceutical companies by restricting prices and removing
      incentives for investment in innovative medicines (Lewis, 2006).

      Says the government that subsidises Big Pharma to the tune of US$9 billion per year on their Orphan Drugs scheme (The Entrepreneurial State by Mariana Mazzucato).

      So much for ‘prices’ being the incentive.

  2. Richard Rawshark 2

    Hekia, and John sitting on a tree k I s s I n g..

    I have confidence in my minister these rooms having been going on a long time..

    Well from 1966-1985 I never met one, and believe me i’m bi-polar, if they were available i’d have been in one.

    But when I grew up it seems they were not used then.. you got strapped. Tended to shock some sense into you.

    So.. locking kids up and leaving them in dark rooms happened when? When the minister abandoned special schools and left teachers to figure it out themselves..?

    Lets lock Hekia up in a dark room and let her see what it’s really like, I’m sure Paremoremo has some nice confined spaces.

    • Whispering Kate 2.1

      Well Richard I am inclined to disagree with you. Back in the 1950’s I can well remember in a Standard 1 (as it was known then) classroom there was a store room (stationery room) to the left of the blackboard where we were from time to time shut in until the end of class. Finally we were brought out and given the strap across our hands – believe me it hurt like hell. This male teacher was nothing but a sadist and a friend of mine had her hand swell up like a balloon from her strapping. Punishment for disrupting the class, flicking paper darts you name it resulted in the strap.

      Kids have never changed but we never did see seriously unwell kids with disorders which need specialised care, ours was just for being “naughty kids”.

      This does not mean that I think these rooms are acceptable, they are not – bottom line institutions are being starved of funds and we the taxpayer are missing out on services we have paid for. Teachers can’t cope, doctors can’t cope, Mental Health can’t cope, Police are overworked and we have a Government that doesn’t give a shit.

      • Richard Rawshark 2.1.1

        Wow I stand corrected, i’m shocked. Glad I only got the cane or strap

        I remember in the mid 70’s calling my teacher a bloody bastard..i was more worried what my parents would do frankly.

        Strangely my teacher never told them, was a sweaty evening though.. you know waiting for, “so how was school today boy.”

        On topic though, it is outrageous that today anyone at all even considers it appropriate in any form.. sadistic pleasures almost.

    • Michelle 2.2

      lock her in the room with the other wankers in her party make it a big room there is lots of them

  3. Is Labour’s conference starting today? No sign of it here. It seems to be absent from Labour’s website too.

    Also Facebook, which says “New Zealand Labour Party does not have any upcoming events.”

    Is Labour this short of comms staff? Or, under the Memorandum of Understanding, are they leaving social media to the Greens?

    [There seems to be an implication there that The Standard is connected to the Labour Party organisation. As you well know it’s not, and I don’t care what you now assert about your comment, the implication is still there. Given your substantial history of asserting that there is a connection, and your history of walking the edge of the commenting rules here, I’m going to err on the side of caution and make this a warning. Have a think about the site rules, including the bit about wasting moderator time. – weka]

      • Pete George 3.1.1

        Ok, if you find the small Menu in the top right corner of the website and click on it, and then click on Events off that, you can find the Conference, and then you have to click into that.

        Nothing on Facebook events.

        It’s up to Labour whether they want to publicise it or not but it seems strangely obscure.

      • BM 3.1.2

        Hidden away in the menu fly out is not a great place for the event button.

        Needs to be a main element on the home page.

        Events need to be front and center, I’d use the kiwi dream as a place holder and swap it out every time there’s a major event on.

    • Weka – you are reading something into my comments that wasn’t there. There are usually posts here about Labour conferences so I thought there might be something here about it – as there later was.

      There are often posts here about specific Labour Party matters, like conferences. Some of the authors and some of the regular commenters have obvious and open links to Labour. That doesn’t make this a Labour Party website, it’s not, but it’s well known as one with some Labour content. And Green content, and Mana content, and other content.

      If a moderator chooses to waste their time they can pretty much pick on anything they like to warn or ban. That’s your call of course. To clarify, are you warning me to not mention Labour here in case someone interprets it as something more than it is?

      [no, I’m suggesting you grow some social intelligence and understand that your long history here affects how people interpret your comments, including your history of implying and/or telling lies about the connections between the authors, the site and political parties. IME, you are an expert in riding the edge of the rules to avoid bans but still manage to substantially disrupt the community. But thanks for pointing me back to this from the other thread, more than happy to moderate on the basis of self-martydom so I don’t have to deal with this shit for another week (and a day on top of the other ban) – weka].

  4. Morrissey 4

    Picking on Samoans in Auckland, on the homeless in New Plymouth:
    Meanness and racism are New Zealand’s shame

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/property/85961126/homeless-charity-proposal-divides-quiet-new-plymouth-street-between-incensed-and-ashamed

  5. Ad 5

    Interesting quote from an interview with Phil Goff by Finlay McDonald:

    Finlay:
    Without wishing to relitigate three decades of economic policy, one of the consequences of financial deregulation in the 1980s was a massive speculative boom and bust in Auckland. It’s always been a merchant town, hasn’t it? A fast-buck, short-term town that is hard to govern and hard to plan.

    Mayor Goff:
    It’s a commercial town, yes. That makes it very different to Wellington. And I didn’t give up in the Fourth Labour Government my belief in the importance of state intervention, in partnership, to prevent further market failure and social injustice. And I still believe in those things. I mean, I deplore the fact that someone can go out there and flip a property five times, add $180,000 to the price, that some poor family will have to spend the next 40 years of their life paying off, for something they’ve made overnight for dong nothing. That’s just wrong.

    What’s the best way to deal with that? I’ve said, and I know John Key disagrees, I would have something like the property transfer tax that Vancouver has instituted, or I would do what Australia has done and say, no, you can’t buy existing property altogether, build a new house. I think those things make sense, I don’t see that as ideological.

    (the full interview is in Paperboy magazine, a new Auckland publication)

    • s y d 5.1

      At first you read it and think oh, yeah, OK… but then I re-read it and….” I didn’t give up in the Fourth Labour Government my belief in the importance of state intervention, in partnership, to prevent further market failure and social injustice”

      He didn’t give up his belief in preventing further failure.

      He ‘deplores’ that housing is an investment commodity/vehicle, then proposes tax on transfer as a solution, to bring housing into line with other investment vehicles.

      I can imagine Phil looking on as some bugger is getting smashed over by several large capitalists, and his advice would be , don’t stomp the head, keep things to the body only. We need this loser at work on Monday.

  6. Puckish Rogue 6

    I understand why its not being released but I still wouldn’t mind knowing what the threat was:

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11741460

    • Gangnam Style 6.1

      Little old ladies discussing to end their lives with dignity perhaps?

      • Puckish Rogue 6.1.1

        I’d actually like it if that was the reason as opposed to having terrorist threats to our country but you’d have to be naïve to think we’re immune

        • Gangnam Style 6.1.1.1

          We are immune. We are at more risk of having a ship crash into our coast or our electric cable being cut that connects the South Island to the North, see how easy it would be to shut this country down? A person went into WINZ & killed people, people go through red lights, children are abused every day, my wife was pulled over last night & accused of talking on her cell phone & made to sit in her car for 38 minutes before the cop came back & said while he didn’t believe her he would let her off (she is not the type of person that would talk on a cell driving).

          My point is they cannot protect us from the mundane already, & if someone really wanted to do damage in NZ it could be easily done (how easy for someone to storm the Beehive, find a Glock in the toilets).

          The Govt & police & spies & army all rely on paranoia, in the USA it’s about black people (you ever seen that TV show about Americans building bunkers? They were all terrified of black people!, even if their fear was tidal waves they would still show images of black people rioting, crazy stuff). So yeah, either live your life in fear & positive, or believe the hype, your call.

          Better go back to work : (

          • Puckish Rogue 6.1.1.1.1

            Doomsday Preppers (I’m assuming that’s the show you’re referring to) is like any reality show in that its not real, the people filmed are made to look the way the producers want them to look

            I’m quite interested in that type of thing as a couple of earthquakes is a very good way to make you realise the information on the back of the old phone book is actually quite useful and by all accounts if the producers of the show want someone to look like a yahoo they will

            http://offgridsurvival.com/doomsdayprepperslookbad/
            http://www.survivalpunk.com/why-i-dont-like-doomsday-preppers/

            You can also see that the episodes generally follow the same formula, in that theres always one or two idiots (or made to look that way) then followed by someone (or group) that’s quite onto it but also quite intense thereby falling into the cliché of preppers being a certain stereotype

      • Stuart Munro 6.1.2

        It was a concrete threat, so Chinese steel probably.

    • why do you want to know? – you don’t actually think a low level operative like you would get the facts or the truth do you – I hope you’re not that innocent puck

    • Stuart Munro 7.1

      When the government is as corrupt as Key’s anything is an improvement.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 7.2

      I think Gareth is much, much more likely to offer some positive change than the current government – and in my opinion, he is talking about UBI and unfairness in the tax system more openly than some of the parties on the left. These two topics could go a long way to fixing some of NZ’s current problems.

      ‘The Big Kahuna’ is certainly worth a read.

    • BM 7.3

      Greens won’t like this could end up taking a fair chunk of their vote.

      I’d also expect them to take a bite out of Labour, this sort of party would appeal to the Nick Leggett type of people in Labour.

      • Garibaldi 7.3.1

        I think a lot of people are pissed off with both National and Labour being disingenuous lying bastards, and Morgan could/should do quite well( if it wasn’t for the cat lovers!).

  7. UncookedSelachimorpha 8

    Gareth Morgan launches a new political party . I quite like the name.

    Could be interesting. I agree with Gareth on many things but not all. He is a fan of getting the rich to pay their share of tax, and a UBI.

    Such a party could bring some interesting debate, while the last significant new party, Internet-Mana, seemed like a mismatched shambles to me.

    Is Morgan’s Opportunities Party more likely to attract votes from Labour/Greens, or from NAct?

    • weka 8.1

      Better than the Cat Killer Party I suppose 😉

      “Is Morgan’s Opportunities Party more likely to attract votes from Labour/Greens, or from NAct?”

      One hopes that left voters have enough sense to understand how MMP works and that their votes need to go to L/G if they want a change of govt next year. I’m guessing he’ll pick up some swing voters, and some of the bluegreen vote. He won’t be getting the cat vote. Haven’t seen anything about his policies though.

    • Puckish Rogue 8.2

      “He is a fan of getting the rich to pay their share of tax, and a UBI. ”

      – I’ll guess Lab/Greens

      • weka 8.2.1

        why would L/G voters put their vote somewhere where it’s likely to lessen the chances of a change of govt? Unless you think Morgan is going to get an electorate seat or over 5% and would only support a L/G govt, why would any leftie vote for them?

        • Puckish Rogue 8.2.1.1

          If this is true: “He is a fan of getting the rich to pay their share of tax, and a UBI. ”

          Then I can’t see many National voters voting for him either

          • weka 8.2.1.1.1

            UBI has some solid support on the right, look it up. I’d say he’d pick up National voters who are feeling uncomfortable with the way National are going about things. But yeah, more likely swing voters and bluegreen voters.

            Morgan himself seems old school conservative to me.

            • Puckish Rogue 8.2.1.1.1.1

              Old school like Muldoon? Great, so NZ can be run like a polish shipyard again, think big all over again, lets nationalise telecom and wait two weeks for a new land line phone

              Sorry but if that’s the case I’m still voting National…then Labour if need be

              • Stuart Munro

                You would be still using landlines you dinosaur.

                • Puckish Rogue

                  Lets see why I still have a land line

                  http://hanfordsentinel.com/news/opinion/columnists/preparedness-facts-cellphone-vs-landline/article_0f19db32-777e-11e1-904a-0019bb2963f4.html

                  yeah its American but

                  http://www.unison.co.nz/tell-me-about/safety/electricity-outages-be-prepared/electricity-outages-lifehacks

                  “An ‘old fashioned’ line-powered corded phone (using a copper line) will still work, so keeping one for emergencies is a good plan”

                  also because if you want to be contacted by polling companies it helps to have a landline 🙂

                  “You would be still using landlines you dinosaur”

                  Do you ever feel like you’re just not good enough Stuart?

                  • Stuart Munro

                    “Do you ever feel like you’re just not good enough Stuart?”

                    Please don’t project your failures onto me PR. You run the old fake line about phones taking forever (which wasn’t true everywhere by any means) – in an attempt to elide the gross overcharging and delayed technology rollout that was normalised with the creation of the Telecom monopoly as if it were original.

                    Is that really the best you can do?

                    This is why you belong on kiwiblog – you are a creature of the failed neo-liberal past – an embodiment of post-war austerity. None of NZ’s problems are solvable by application of your cyclopean worldview.

                    Screwing the polls is all you’ve got – a sham of governance – a mask, instead of the thing itself.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      You said ““You would be still using landlines you dinosaur”

                      I said exactly why I still have a landline in response to your attempted insult and now you’re backtracking back into a different argument

                      You said: “You run the old fake line about phones taking forever (which wasn’t true everywhere by any means)”

                      http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/telecommunications/page-6

                      “But business customers in particular wanted more sophisticated telephone services which were available internationally, and households were often frustrated by the time it took to get a telephone.”

                    • McFlock

                      It’s actually a fair reason to have a cable phone – it was a big issue in the chch earthquakes. As well as that lots of people had only cordless landlines, which needed power, so found themselves with the power out and a working but useless phone line.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Yeah I’m just hassling PR.

                      Robust solutions are to be preferred – but multiplying phone providers hasn’t resolved the issues by any means. I’m used to Korean internet – still cursing the syrupy speed here in Dunedin & apparently this is the best NZ can do 🙁 .

                      No sign of aspirational futures here, though spring is pleasant – The Gnats haven’t figured out how to privatise it yet.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      “But business customers in particular wanted more sophisticated telephone services which were available internationally, and households were often frustrated by the time it took to get a telephone.”

                      IME, that’s actually wrong.

                      It also ignores the physical reality of what was available as RWNJs always do.

                      You can’t get a phone connected next day when there’s several kilometres of space between the cable and your house that needs filling first. You also can’t get it connected if there’s no one available to do the connecting.

                      As for the more sophisticated services? Just imagine the howls of outrage if the Post Office had spent the billions of dollars to update all the exchanges every time the technology changed.

                      BTW, privatisation has actually slowed that process down as well because the payments in to Telecom have been taken out into profits rather than reinvested into the network as was happening before.

                      It’s why I figure we’re between five and ten years behind where we would have been if we hadn’t privatised.

                    • McFlock

                      That TEARA article is fucking bullshit – it doesn’t mention the billion-odd dollars spent doing up the network before the sale. Nor does it mention that folks still have to wait months for a phone line if their local exchange box is full.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    “An ‘old fashioned’ line-powered corded phone (using a copper line) will still work, so keeping one for emergencies is a good plan”

                    That would depend upon the damage. If the powers out due to a pole down and the phone cable was also on the pole then your phone won’t work either. Such damage could also cut the phone line even if it wasn’t on the pole.

                    You’re showing your typical RWNJ misunderstanding of physical reality.

                    Me, I’d prefer to have solar panels on the roof so that I can keep essential services like radios and cellphones going.

                    also because if you want to be contacted by polling companies it helps to have a landline

                    I’ve been contacted a few times by polling companies on my cellphone.

                    • McFlock

                      solar panels is a good one. I also have a coal range with a wetback that I hardly ever use, but at least if something happens in winter I have a chance of being ok for potable water and warmth.

                    • Bob

                      “I’ve been contacted a few times by polling companies on my cellphone”
                      Wow, I didn’t think they did this, if they do then Labour must be way ahead on the polls now…(sarc)

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      Well yes solar panerls would be good but not everyone can afford them but most people should be able to afford a simple land line phone which means it better then not having it

                      “I’ve been contacted a few times by polling companies on my cellphone.”

                      – No, no, no Draco you haven’t been contacted by a polling company on your mobile because it is well known that polling companies only ring land line phones which is why the polls are skewed because poor people and people on the left don’t have landline phones

              • weka

                “Old school like Muldoon?”

                No. Old school conservative as opposed to neoliberal. So people that are economically conservative but still believe in the importance of everyone doing ok. Obviously Morgan does that in a contemporary context.

                • Puckish Rogue

                  That’s sort of why I prefer our present choices of parties, not too left and not too right

                  I just don’t see what Morgan can do what others have failed to do…unless he can pick up an electorate seat of course

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    That’s sort of why I prefer our present choices of parties, not too left and not too right

                    Except for the fact that Labour and National are both hard right economically which is why neither can fix the economy. They’re both working from a failed paradigm. National more so than Labour but it doesn’t really make any difference to the outcome. It fails either way.

              • Siobhan

                The business upstairs have been waiting the better part of 6 months for their broadband, from a company that shall remain nameless.
                Despite numerous technicians turning up and pointing at things, it’s still not connected.
                They seem unable to coordinate.
                They couldn’t organize the proverbial piss up in a brewery.
                As one of the young techs who turned up said “The funny thing about working in communications is the lack of communication”.

                Yet again this bright shiny future we are living in seems very Polish Ship Yard to me.
                Just with better brochures.

              • Draco T Bastard

                wait two weeks for a new land line phone

                You do realise that with privatisation and the lack of investment in the network that the waits actually got worse don’t you?

          • Draco T Bastard 8.2.1.1.2

            An amazing admission that National voters support bludgers.

  8. Richard Rawshark 9

    It’s the end of the world..

    REM I keep hearing it lately

    read they Lyrics and marvel at their predictions.

  9. Andre 10

    Why a price on carbon would help stop climate backward steps like this.

    http://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2016/11/3/13499278/nuclear-retirements-coal-gas

    Note it’s not an argument for new nukes, it’s an argument to keep existing nukes going. Which have already incurred the majority of their environmental costs. The environmental costs of continuing to fuel them and deal with the waste are pretty small compared to the environmental cost of building them and irradiating the working parts of the power station.

    • Richard Rawshark 10.1

      Fission will be the solution and more money we throw at it the sooner we can have virtually free unlimited and radiation free energy.

      • Andre 10.1.1

        You mean fusion rather than fission?

        Most of the efforts are on deuterium-tritium fusion. Which produces one energetic neutron per reaction. Which in an ideal world gets absorbed by a deuterium nucleus to create tritium in an ongoing cycle. But it’s much more likely to get absorbed in the casing of the reactor making it radioactive. And the required tritium will need to be produced in a separate radioactive process. So not entirely radiation-free, just a lot lot less than conventional fission nukes.

        As far as I can tell, the best efforts are still decades away from getting a big enough fusion reaction going for long enough to create industrial amounts of power. Let alone starting to tackle the engineering problem of how to get that heat out of a reactor that’s fully enclosed in electromagnetic equipment that doesn’t like getting hot.

        So it still looks to me like we’re 25 years away from practical fusion power. Just like we have been since the first lab fusion reactions were demonstrated many decades ago.

        • Richard Rawshark 10.1.1.1

          As far as i’m aware, not having checked google, these are just versions of hydrogen isotopes. Fussion, fission I always get them mixed up they are so similar in meaning, however fusing atoms together sounds right.

          as Hydrogen is a non radiative element i’m unsure where the destructive radiation is going to come from but hey no scientist. I’ll take your word on it.

          More resources should be used on this sort of energy not maintaining coal or nuclear reactors with harmful bi-products like spent rods Co2 etc.

          We can’t keep saying things are to hard, you have to try.

          • Andre 10.1.1.1.1

            The wikipedia articles are generally useful.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fusion_power

            I’ve got an uncle who was a plasma physicist at Oak Ridge working on the fusion program there. He arranged a visit for me to the tokamak at Princeton in 1991 before they shut it down. Ever since I’ve been keeping an interested eye on developments. The information I’ve seen come out into the public domain really doesn’t make me hopeful. But maybe one of the secretive private companies funded by Silicon Valley squillionaires might crack it…

          • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1.1.2

            Fussion, fission I always get them mixed up they are so similar in meaning,

            They’re complete opposites:

            Fission = splitting atoms apart
            Fusion = fusing atoms together

            as Hydrogen is a non radiative element i’m unsure where the destructive radiation is going to come from but hey no scientist.

            Hydrogen has one proton and one electron and is non-radioactive
            Deuterium, an isotope of hydrogen, has one proton, one electron and one neutron and is radioactive
            Tritium, another isotope of hydrogen, has one proton, one electron and two neutrons and is radioactive

            Helium has two protons, two electrons and two neutrons. Which means that you need a source of neutrons to get two hydrogen atoms to fuse into helium which is where the deuterium and tritium come into it. Another source is helium 3 but that’s rarer than deuterium or tritium but is supposedly better.

            • Richard Rawshark 10.1.1.1.2.1

              Ok, so umm can you build me a fussion reactor then?

              as for your examples so they force plutonium to compress using explosives to make a nuclear bomb..how’s that forcing shit apart?

              • Draco T Bastard

                Ok, so umm can you build me a fussion reactor then?

                Nope. That would be my limits on it there.

                as for your examples so they force plutonium to compress using explosives to make a nuclear bomb..how’s that forcing shit apart?

                It’s not. It’s bringing together enough fissionable material to achieve critical mass. What this means in practice is that there’s enough high energy neutrons around in a high enough density to cause other neutrons to break free from the rest of the fissile material in a self-sustaining chain reaction.

  10. Armada 11

    Claire Trevett won’t publish readers comments on her Thursday piece on Cunliffe!

    Perhaps the readers’ comments were not to her liking. Poor sensitive thing.

    • Richard Rawshark 11.1

      Neither will Audrey, last I looked. Both will have received their fair share of negative comments. I called Clare a troll looks like, writes like, acts like must be a troll.

      Her article was no better than an out and out troll attack and she probably hates trolls strangely.

  11. greywarshark 12

    https://player.fm/series/rnz-nine-to-noon/1-in-9-cant-afford-to-visit-doctor

    Kathryn Ryan talks with Dr Tim Malloy, President of the College of GPs about access to primary health care.

    Ministry of Health figures show 1 in 9 cannot afford to go to the doctor. Dr Malloy says the very people who need health care the most, are missing out, with long-term consequences for the country.

  12. Siobhan 13

    If you’re into “signing” and like to ‘touch base’ with Anne Tolley every now and then…

    http://www.together.org.nz/manpower?recruiter_id=20344

    “Group spokesman Jonathan King said the contracts beneficiaries signed had no pay rates, and did not specify where the work would be or what hours they would be expected to work.

    Mr King said the contracts also asked for personal information such as religion and sexual preference.

    “These contracts are illegal. The Ministry of Social Development (MSD) is making people accept these contracts with Manpower and threaten people that if they don’t sign the contracts their benefits will be sanctioned.”

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/317216/protest-in-auckland-against-precarious-work

  13. Kevin 14

    Don’t you just love those born-to-rule types?

    Major tanty after losing out on leadership role.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/86084636/mps-wifes-sworn-in-resigns-walks-out

  14. The Chairman 15

    Really?

    Half a million dollars trying to find out why Southlanders roll their ‘Rs
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/86079559/530000-to-investigate-why-southlanders-roll-their-rs

    • Michelle 15.1

      f…n waste of our taxes/ money and shows our priorities are wrong

      • Draco T Bastard 15.1.1

        It’s not a waste at all. It tells us more of ourselves.

        nosce te ipsum

        • The Chairman 15.1.1.1

          With what’s currently going on in this country, why Southlanders roll their R’s is not a priority for this sort of expenditure.

          • Draco T Bastard 15.1.1.1.1

            What difference does it really make?

            It has a couple of people working finding out a bit more about ourselves. It’s probably useful information that will be used at some point.

            What it hasn’t done is detract from our ability to feed, clothe and house ourselves. We’re quite capable of doing that and have those people do that research as well.

            The question you need to ask is why we’re not taking proper care of our nation when we are capable of doing so? Why does our socio-economic system insist that we have people living in poverty?

            • The Chairman 15.1.1.1.1.1

              “What difference does it really make?”

              It could be going towards helping the vulnerable, which we may be capable of doing, but clearly aren’t doing enough.

              “The question you need to ask is why we’re not taking proper care of our nation when we are capable of doing so?”

              Because, for one example, we are prioritizing expenditure like this.

              • Draco T Bastard

                It could be going towards helping the vulnerable, which we may be capable of doing, but clearly aren’t doing enough.

                It won’t make any difference.

                Because, for one example, we are prioritizing expenditure like this.

                Wrong. It’s because we’re giving all our wealth to the rich and then allowing them to dictate to us how it’s used.

              • McFlock

                Yeah, studying the nuances of language has never done a damned thing for NZ. We should be funding research that’s directly applicable to industries in NZ, like agriculture or movies. It’s not like they needed specialists in obscure languages for the Hobbit movies /nerdsarc

    • Incognito 15.2

      Sigh, here we go again …

      We need both the ‘hard’ sciences (AKA Joyce’s STEM subjects) but also humanities. Robert R. Wilson, who worked on the Manhattan project, responded when he had to justify millions of dollars on a large particle accelerator:

      “It only has to do with the respect with which we regard one another, the dignity of men, our love of culture… it has to do with: are we good painters, good sculptors, great poets? I mean all the things that we really venerate and honor in our country and are patriotic about. In that sense, this new knowledge has all to do with honor and country but it has nothing to do directly with defending our country except to help make it worth defending.”

      http://history.fnal.gov/testimony.html

      Funny how this sideways connects to another post here today https://thestandard.org.nz/nationalism-or-patriotism/

  15. I want to say sorry to those I’ve been nasty to today.

    I offer this to you…

  16. Seti 17

    New Roy Morgan out..

    “National Party support up in October; now well ahead of potential Labour/ Greens alliance after successful overseas trips for PM Key

    During October support for National rose by 6.5% to 48% now clearly ahead of a potential Labour/ Greens alliance 38% (down 7.5%) after Prime Minister John Key travelled extensively overseas – including an address to a UN conference in late September. If a New Zealand Election was held now the latest New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll shows National would be re-elected.”

    • – National 48% (up from 41.5)
      – Labour 26.5% (down from 33.5)
      – Greens 11.5% (down from 12)
      – NZ First 10% (up from 8.5)
      – Maori Party 1.5% (down from 2)
      – ACT 0.5% (down from 1)
      – Internet Party 0.5% (up from 0)
      – United Future 0%
      – Mana Party 0%
      – Conservative Party 0% (down from 0.5)
      – Other 1.5% (up from 1)

      Polling October 10-23, 2016
      Labour+Greens+NZ First = National

      • stigie 17.1.1

        National polling around the last election…
        Labour polling around the last election…
        Seems about right !

    • Draco T Bastard 17.2

      Too much change after nothings happened so this is a rogue poll – a way, way out there rogue poll.

      I think these polling people need to increase the number that they’re polling. At least double but probably better to triple it.

  17. weka 18

    [In order to keep Open Mike and Daily Review free for other conversations, please put all comments, link postings etc about the US election under the dedicated US Election Discussion Post here.]

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