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Open mike 05/09/2020

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 5th, 2020 - 63 comments
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Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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

Step up to the mike …

63 comments on “Open mike 05/09/2020 ”

  1. Pat 1

    The Government is looking at ways of introducing an ACC-like insurance scheme for "people who lose their jobs.

    The Productivity Commission earlier this year noted most OECD countries have some form of unemployment insurance, which people can draw down on for a set period of time if they lose their job.

    Finance Minister Grant Robertson told interest.co.nz New Zealand needs a sustainable scheme, which gives people security and keeps them connected to the labour market."

    https://www.interest.co.nz/insurance/106364/could-labours-first-major-policy-announcement-be-permanent-unemployment-insurance

    "The payment could be claimed for one week for each five weeks the person has worked, up to a maximum of 26 weeks per claim. So someone who has worked continuously for only one year could claim up to 10 weeks’ cover."

    Im old enough to have experienced the fallout of the market reforms of the eighties and nineties…indeed I was recently married with two young children when those reforms created the conditions where for 14 months I was unemployed (the longest of a few periods) , under this proposal we would have received 6 months unemployment ……what would we have lived on for the following 8 months Grant?

    If Labour are seriously considering an unemployment insurance scheme in the next electoral period then they need to front up with the policy pre election…..indeed any policy to examine would be welcome.

    • Sabine 1.1

      Funny, i thought unemployment insurance was paid for via income tax and all one had to do was to go to the Winz office, fill out some forms, be eligable and then get a hand ful of dollars.

      Does the Gentlemen want to increase the taxes on the working stiffs?

      funny, innit?

      As for having 'unemployment insurance' why yes, in Germany we have that.

      On our pay slip it states what taxes are paid for

      income income tax

      retirement insurance tax

      accident insurance ax

      unemployment insurance tax

      'solidarity tax' (started witht he re-unification of Germany to pay for it,)

      religion tax ( one can opt out – goes to roman catholic and protestant churches only)

      for this in Germany you get

      • 6 weeks full pay (of the job) if you have an accident at work and then ACC kicks in at 60% of last wage
      • 6 month of unemployement for 1 year worked or 12 month if one has worked and paid into the system for longer then a year, at 60% of last wage and you can calculate that at home cause the WINZ drone in Germany has no 'discretion' they are there to give you a form to fill out, determine your eligablilty and oh, they have to be polite to you and you are allowed access to the toilets when you need. If you don't qualify then you get full social welfare costs, also with appropriate politeness and access to toilets should you need one while waiting for your appointment. Non of this, here have a starvation handful of dollars and don't be upset about it, lest i kick you out without anything. Also you are allowed to take a lover home if you so desire and it will not affect your benefit. Unemployment benefits are also calculated per the tax payer and not any family unit that may or may exist. I.e. you get the full amount irrespective of your partners earning.
      • Retirement is set at a certain amount of your last wage – depending on how many years one contributed. While this system is inherently bad for women – they now receive years added for child care to make up for the loss of income, the lower pays, etc. Still not great but an attempt was made. One needs to participate i.e. pay in, for a min of 15 years. in abscence of that one will receive at least full social welfare. See about politness of the case worker and access to toilets above.

      (the same stipulation of all taxes paid i have also seen in Holland and France – the only country that does not do it (in my working experience)is NZ cause they 'simplyfied' the system as i was explained by my hubby many years ago)

      and at the end of the year the germans get to do a tax return for such things as ‘cost of public transport for work’, ‘work clothes’ , job seeking costs ‘i.e. print/copy of references, postal cost, clothing etc’ .

      but,

      income tax is not as high as it is in NZ, in fact many years ago when i asked why the different parts are not listed i was told that NZ 'wiped all of at' and rolled it up in a higher income tax.

      I wonder if the Gentlemen has read the news and realised that people are taking pay cuts in order to protect their jobs, does he realise that people are cutting hours worked in order to keep their jobs, or that they have and are in the process of losing their jobs?

      And frankly is this the only tax that this well to do man can think of, because I think his income group could start paying some taxes too, or would that come at a hard time for him?

      • satty 1.1.1

        I never considered Germany a low tax country. Last time I worked there – around 20 years ago – I paid around 50% tax (Einkommensteuer und Gewerbesteuer). At the moment the top income tax rate in Germany is 45% plus Gewerbesteuer (business tax) of around 15%, dependent on your location.

        New Zealand has the lowest income related taxes of all countries I’ve ever worked in (Germany, UK, Australia). It’s was also easiest to start a business.

        If you’re an employee on a low / medium income, you might be better off tax-wise in Germany.

        Germany also has lots of other taxes, Kapitalertragssteuer (CGT), Grundsteuer (Land tax), Grunderwerbssteuer (similar to stamp duty), Erbschaftssteuer (Inheritance tax)… to name a few.

        • Sabine 1.1.1.1

          IF you have paid Gewerbesteuer you were self employed.

          The local business tax (Gewerbesteuer) is applied as a tax on the profits of business and the objective profitability of a business operation. It is the most important original source of income for cities and towns in Germany.

          also here

          Basis for taxation

          Taxation is based on the profit from the balance sheet or surplus income statement of each company, which is corrected on the basis of income tax and corporate tax law.

          Additionally, there are extra calculations and reduction in the profit that apply only to local business tax, for example:

          • Expenses for interest and rent
          • Share income and loss from shares in corporations and partnerships
          • Land

          Sole proprietorships and partnerships are also allowed an exempt amount of 24,500 Euro.

          https://wwkn.de/en/about-german-taxes/local-business-tax-gewerbesteuer/

          so you would have paid income tax on your taxable income and Gewerbesteuer on the business that you ran, taking into account the exempt amount of 24.500 Euro Dollars around 50.000 NZD.

          the list that i posted above relates to 'wage slaves' i .e. waged employees who in NZ tend to only pay taxes with no write offs and almost guaranteed humiliation while trying to get their benefits from Winz.

          I mean we could start with all the taxes you listed last CGT, Grundsteuer etc, but that would be levying taxes at the rich and very rich which in this country we are loath to do and make no mistake Grant Roberston is not going to increase the taxes on his income class cause that would be so unpleasant and wrong for his peers and even himself.

          • Patricia Bremner 1.1.1.1.1

            They have lowered their income for 6 months. Some 20% most 10%. Tell all Sabine..Good and Bad.

            • Sabine 1.1.1.1.1.1

              The promised pay cut of our suits in parliament?
              https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12351018

              You are right, 3 month after the PM promised these pay cuts they have come into effect. 10% of 200.000 would come to 20.000 – an amount beneficiaries would love to have as an anual income. So no i am not crying any tears for the poor hard done by Grant Robertson and friends.

              Last, this pay cut is a voluntary thing, and something that quite a few Kiwis are currently living with in order to keep their jobs. That is the big difference, that unless Dear Grant decides to quit for good he can live until the end of his life on the government tit to the tune of a few millions or unless he gets voted out.

              But for him to call for a new tax on the workers of this country to 'pay for ' unemployment – which already is paid for via Taxation is stink, lazy, tonedeaf.

        • woodart 1.1.1.2

          good post satty. too many tax whiners have never actually worked or started businesses overseas. it is a real eye opener to have to wade through mountains of forms , and the regulations! and the extra taxes that we DONT HAVE.

          • Sabine 1.1.1.2.1

            Nope not a good post dear Woodart, as the taxes Satty talks about relate to businesses and not to waged workers while Grant Robertson is trying to increase the taxes of the waged workers. (He is right about Germany being a High Tax country, its the price they pay for relatively decent benefits and social net – while not perfect for all)

            Two different pair of shoes. See the link in my comment to Satty.

            Btw, this is not a whinging about paying taxes, this is calling Grant Robertson to task for thinking about raising taxes on the workers – who are the ones currently getting pummeled by the covid recession/depression, while not loudly thinking about the other Taxes Satty mentioned, which are all levyied at the rich and well to do in Germany. I.e. Land tax, CGT and the likes.

            Also no we don't have to wade through mountains of 'paper' either, they get monthly pay checks that list what their earnings is, the %age of taxes levied for the individual points, and a end of year statement which is then used to claim back some of the income tax . I.e. cost of transport, cost of finding a job, cost of workclothes and shoes, cost of internet, phone, computer etc if needed for jobs. It can be a good grand or two depending on hte expenses one has to maintain a professional life.

            I am all for Grant Robertson levying a few taxes – on his income group, those above him. He can start with CGT, a financial transaction tax, or eve a solidarity tax, but he is talking about pinching pennies from the working poor of this country and that is fucking pathetic and sad.

            here from 2015 – and i don't think anything has changed about that

            https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?_id=3&objectid=11392100

            Those who come under the scrutiny of this IRD division must have, or be in control of, more than $50 million.

            According to IRD's investigation and advice manager Tracey Lloyd, the unit has identified 200 people who met the criteria.

            Of these 200 people, 93 declared their personal income in the 2013 financial year as less than $70,000 – the point at which one is required pay the top tax rate of 33 cents in the dollar.

            Maybe they just need to instruct IRD to go as hard after these guys as Winz goes after a single mum with child who may have been overpaid 5.50 in an emergency grant.

            • woodart 1.1.1.2.1.1

              and maybe sabine, you shouldnt be so precious and defensive. wasnt commenting about you or your post. I have been a wage slave and started businesses here and overseas,and have hired staff and had premises. so probably know more about tax and paperwork than you. have an ice day..

              • Sabine

                Yeah, having worked in large international companies here and overseas, having a degree in accountancy, speaking three languages, and having created my own business in a foreign land and actually knowing about tax structures in Germany/France/Holland/NZ and such make me a complete fool.

                Yes dear.

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    There's an extremely good analysis of social media sexism on Stuff. I'll just reproduce a single portion but could easily multiple-post with others, the author has provided so many highly-topical quotes & pertinent comments in this comprehensive report.

    Leading-edge tech is being applied to measure the toxicity:

    They built ParityBOT with the help of student volunteer coders, using the New York Times comments section to develop its natural language processing capabilities. In the 2019 Canadian general election, it tracked 228,255 tweets sent to 314 women candidates, 9987 of which were deemed hateful – a “toxicity” rate of 4.38 per cent.

    Colleague Jacqueline Comer, now a Wellingtonian, convinced them to launch in New Zealand and in the 23 days since, @ParityBOT_NZ has tweeted around 3000 times, for a slightly lower toxicity rate than in Canada, of 2.75 per cent.

    The trio is now hoping to attract “a small amount” of funding, around $15,000, to develop the system’s capabilities in New Zealand.

    One of ParityBOT’s standout features is the data it collects as it automatically measures and tweets; by election day, it should have gathered a much clearer picture of online hate towards women candidates than currently exists.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/300096675/twitter-toxicity-and-the-2020-election

  3. Robert Guyton 3

    "“What we do is we maybe employ farmers and breed bucket loads of the bastards and we put them back in huge numbers, so by the time we’ve finished they’re waking up every kid through the night with the incessant croaking of their calls.”"

    'It’s going to be our way now': the guerrilla rewilder shaking up British farming

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/sep/04/its-going-to-be-our-way-now-the-guerrilla-rewilder-shaking-up-british-farming-aoe

    • Dennis Frank 3.2

      Yeah, chopped link though.

      To many ecologists he’s a visionary; to government officials he’s a pain in the arse. In the afternoon I spend with him he swears more than most people would in a lifetime.

      So he'd be the right person to bring here on tour. Telling right-wing groups of kiwi males how to do Green farming, his lingo would resonate. Could get mass conversion as a result. Maybe even a political party of deep green rightists.

      The Eurasian beaver became extinct in Great Britain in the 16th century. The last reference to beavers in England dates to 1526. A population of Eurasian beaver of unknown origin has been present on the River Otter, Devon in south-west England since 2008. An additional pair was released to increase genetic diversity in 2016.

      As part of a scientific study, a pair of Eurasian beaver was released in 2011 near Dartmoor in southern Devon. The 13 beaver ponds now in place impacted flooding to the extent of releasing precipitation over days to weeks instead of hours.

      Free-living beaver populations also occur around the River Tay and Knapdale areas in Scotland. The Knapdale population was released by the Scottish Wildlife Trust and the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, while the other populations are of unknown origin. Sixteen beavers were released between 2009 and 2014 in Knapdale forest, Argyll. In 2016, the Scottish government declared that the beaver populations in Knapdale and Tayside could remain and naturally expand. This is the first successful reintroduction of a wild mammal in the United Kingdom.

      There's a history of speculation about beavers in Aotearoa, see https://www.odt.co.nz/regions/queenstown-lakes/did-beavers-once-live-south

      • greywarshark 3.2.1

        Another good farming – environmental happening and activity to learn from or compare to what is already started here.

        Savory Institute is recognised as a world leader in the education and implementation of regenerative agriculture around the globe, with Allan’s 2013 TED talk ‘

        Allan Savory’s mission is to regenerate the world’s grasslands through Holistic Management. His long-term goal is to positively influence the management of 1 billion hectares of grasslands by 2025, thereby contributing to global climate, water and food-security….

        Tony Coote AM Memorial Lecture with Allan Savory Event Banner

        The Mulloon Institute

        Tony Coote AM Memorial Lecture with Allan Savory
        Wed 16th Sep 2020, 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm AEST

        https://events.humanitix.com/tony-coote-am-memorial-lecture-with-allan-savory

  4. Dennis Frank 4

    Since I started paying attention to their rhetoric in 1970, there's been a half-century of leftists united on only one thing: belief that providing a positive alternative to capitalism is too hard. Suddenly, one of these fish has turned around and is swimming upstream against the flow.

    In a bid to incorporate into my socialist blueprint different, often clashing, perspectives I decided to conjure up three complex characters whose dialogues would narrate the story – each representing different parts of my thinking: a Marxist-feminist, a libertarian ex-banker and a maverick technologist.

    Their disagreements regarding “our” capitalism provide the background against which my socialist blueprint is projected – and assessed. https://www.theguardian.com/books/2020/sep/04/yanis-varoufakis-capitalism-isnt-working-heres-an-alternative

    Another Now begins in the late 1970s, straddles the crises of 2008 and 2020 but also sketches out an imaginary future, and concludes in 2036. There is a moment in the story, on a Sunday evening in November 2025 to be precise, when my characters try to make sense of their circumstances by looking back to the events of 2020. The first thing they note is how drastically the lockdown changed people’s perception of politics.

    Before 2020, politics seemed almost like a game, but with Covid came the realisation that governments everywhere possessed immense powers.

    The thrilling thing about younger generations is that their steadfast refusal to learn the lessons of history gives them the tantalising possibility of reinventing the wheel.

    The massive government interventions misled naive leftists into the daydream that revived state power would prove a force for good. They forgot what Lenin had once said: politics is about who does what to whom. They allowed themselves to hope that something good might transpire if the same elites that had hitherto condemned so many to untold indignities were handed immeasurable power.

    Statism is good, thinks the left. Total control. So when the people elect the right…

    • Pat 4.1

      "They allowed themselves to hope that something good might transpire if the same elites that had hitherto condemned so many to untold indignities were handed immeasurable power."

      The first thing you need to do is establish who the elites (or their representatives) are.

  5. KJT 5

    @Dennis.
    " belief that providing a positive alternative to capitalism is too hard. ".

    Only in your mind.

    Blinkered by the idea that capitalism and socialism are alternatives, you haven't seen the many ideas and effective proposals for progress.

    Capitalism, at the level of the tradesperson investing in tools to make money from his work, works.

    Yanis, who I’ve been reading for a long time, is not proposing to remove that,

    However it doesn't work without the social agreement to pay him/her enough to live, to have a rule of law so the next warlord doesn't steal his earnings, to have a decent State infrastructure. Socialism.

    Rightly we condemn dictatorship and totalitarian control. A State which is really democratically controlled is a different kettle of fish.
    You seem to have missed all the “lefties” supporting less Government power and more decentralised Democracy,

    We don't even need "fresh ideas". We already know what works, Portugal is showing us right now.

    • Pat 5.1

      We in fact need some very old ideas

      "This is an age-old problem. It was solved in the ancient Near East simply by annulling these debt and rent charges. But the West, shaped as it still is by the legacy of the Roman Empire, has left itself prone to the massive unemployment, business closedowns and resulting arrears for these basic costs of living and doing business."

      https://michael-hudson.com/2020/08/how-an-act-of-god-pandemic-is-destroying-the-west/

      • Stuart Munro 5.1.1

        We in fact need some very old ideas

        Participatory democracy is certainly that – far older than the Greeks or even literacy, it goes back to the earliest form of human societies, the band cultures.

  6. KJT 6

    @Pat. The many different ideas from the left are a good thing.

    A difference from the Right, who are determined to march us in lock step towards an Oligarchy of increasing wealth for a few and a failing society.

    Dennis and Redlogix have a rather one dimensional view of “The left”. A more typically right wing perspective. As evidenced by their continual repetition of bad faith inaccurate right wing memes.

    Describing middle class Greens who want a little more social justice and fairness as “Marxist revolutionaries” FFS.

    • Dennis Frank 6.1

      a rather one dimensional view of “The left”. A more typically right wing perspective

      Not really. I don't have a problem with nuances – they often alert us to important dimensions of situations not immediately apparent.

      My view of the left is based on the culture of intermittent bouts of internecine intellectual warfare interspersed with periods of bland support of the status quo. The former is evidence of groups who are at least trying – while being hamstrung by their inability to agree on common ground. The latter happens when the forelock-tuggers operate in unison. Servants of capitalist masters.

      The cool thing about winning the numbers game, as Jacinda is showing a new generation, is that you can front as a master because few people get how the control system operates. Note how she's never told us she agrees with socialism.

      • greywarshark 6.1.1

        It's great to read the thoughtful ideas coming from you Dennis F and KJT. There is enough in your comments to explain the thought and possible efficacy of whatever's posited so that people can sort of take a bite size and chew on it! Short thoughts are useful too, but good to have substance in comments.

        • Dennis Frank 6.1.1.1

          I'll give credit (without having read his book) to Yanis for operating as theoretician and providing an alternative plan for the future:

          it is the granting of a single non-tradeable share to each employee-partner that holds the key to this economy. By granting employee-partners the right to vote in the corporation’s general assemblies, an idea proposed by the early anarcho-syndicalists, the distinction between wages and profits is terminated and democracy, at last, enters the workplace.

          From a firm’s senior engineers and key strategic thinkers to its secretaries and janitors, everyone receives a basic wage plus a bonus that is decided collectively.

          Since the one-employee-one-vote rule favours smaller decision-making units, corpo-syndicalism causes conglomerates voluntarily to break up into smaller companies, thus reviving market competition.

          Even more strikingly, share markets vanish completely since shares, like IDs and library cards, are now non-tradeable. Once share markets have disappeared, the need for gargantuan debt to fund mergers and acquisitions evaporates – along with commercial finance. And given that the Central Bank provides everyone with a free bank account, private banking shrinks into utter insignificance.

          I'd be happy to give this model a try. It does indeed look likely to tame the capitalist beast (may reserve a diminished role for capital perhaps).

          • greywarshark 6.1.1.1.1

            edit
            The advances by lefties followed by 'bland' co-operation with capitalism, is because the advance is only in materialistic values. Once the principled as they think themselves, get enough money they then get co-opted into a space made available in the money-tree-house.

            This can be likened to the generations in a family where the founder made a success and money in some line, after that the rest of the family follow on expecting to share in the wealth.

            The saying is: “The first generation makes it, the second generation spends it, and the third generation blows it.” https://mustardseedmoney.com/wealthy-lose-money/

            The children find useful niches for themselves so they can enjoy their second and third generation advances in the materialistic culture. Even if they remain relatively poor, being part of a monied background is likely to have made a division between them and those from a poor background. And a for instance, the Douglas family had been in Labour a long time, long enough to have come to disregard workers' needs and the ideals of the betterment of the common man and woman.

            …His family had strong ties with the trade-union movement, and actively engaged in politics. His grandfather, William Theophilus "Bill" Anderton, (1891–1966), was a left-wing Methodist lay preacher…Roger Douglas's father, Norman Vazey Douglas, (1910–1985), a former trade union secretary, served as MP for Auckland Central from 1960–1975, and as opposition spokesman for labour, education, and social security from 1967–1972. Roger's brother Malcolm Douglas was briefly Labour MP for Hunua 1978– 1979. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roger_Douglas#Early_life_and_background

  7. KJT 7

    @Pat.

    An ACC like scheme for illness, disability and unemployment may work.

    I know many people including businesses, who would support extending it to sickness for one.

    Provided it worked more like the original.

    And not the deliberately crippled, to feed demand for privatisation, scheme we have now.

    • Pat 7.1

      Oh it'll work alright…for everyone except those made unemployed.
      It is essentially the same system used in the US…works real well for them….lots of downward pressure on wages, huge pool of gig economy workers, less tax for corporates and wealthy, less pressure on politicians,

      its a win win….if youre a politician or in business.

      Who does the Labour Party represent again?

    • Sabine 7.2

      we already pay for it tho, via our Income taxes.

      Or are they only so high because no one else in this country can be forced to pay taxes like the wage slave (- wage slave i term i was given by Gareth Morgan).

      • Pat 7.2.1

        A more accurate term is 'debt slave'

        • Sabine 7.2.1.1

          not everyone who is a wage slave has debts, just saying, but they all pay taxes through their noses with nothing to write off.

          However there are a lot of rich people who are slaves to debt, in fact they would not be 'asset' rich if banks would not loan the money on the other properties that they are still paying mortgage on.

          • Pat 7.2.1.1.1

            The debt cycle is what requires the continuation of production…why do (enough) people labour to provide the excess for the few?

  8. KJT 8

    @Pat.

    ACC, as originally conceived was a big advance for injured workers.

    Previously if injured you either had to be a member of a powerful Union, or rely on the expensive vagaries of the courts, to get compensation. Which is still the US system.

    The fact that it is also cheaper for employers than the US system, is why we still have it.

    I was working in management, in a company which dabbled in it, when National bought in privatisation options for ACC cover. A short lived and costly failure.

    • Pat 8.1

      ACC has no (official) time limitation…..as Sabine notes, we have a contributory scheme now (poorly funded as it is) …its called taxation.

      Now if the government wishes to make that scheme self funding then the solution lies more in a sovereign wealth fund not an insurance scheme which without details I expect will be administered (and milked of fees) by some private or semi private organisation.

      Curious that this should be floated as a shit storm of unemployment is about to hit our economy for years to come.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 8.2

      If you have experience with ACC – or know people trying to access it – the original idea is totally gone. You are treated with all the disdain given to WINZ 'clients' and the sole goal is to decline any claim and reduce any payments. It has devolved into grudging charity – not a right you have earned because you gave up your right to sue the person who injured you.

  9. KJT 9

    @Sabine.

    We are talking about the politically possible here.

    People are much more inclined to support payments that are going only to a set fund. Such as ACC, where they can see the connection to themselves.

    And yes. The tax system is too narrow. Taxes being paid almost exclusively by PAYE earners and buyers of goods and services.

    • Sabine 9.1

      He is talking about raising taxes on the few of us that still have jobs. Now if he wants to talk about raising the taxes on his class and that of his owners i might be game, but to raise taxes on those that already don't have any money is tone deaf and devoid of any clarity of the situation in regards to the actual people who may i add pay his wages.

      And hey the tax system is to narrow, so lets increase taxes on those that can't swindle themself out of paying taxes, or are too poor to hide it in a tax haven, or are too poor to just buy property and flip them for a Tax free Gain.

      Surely there are other Taxes he can find he if he gave it a good luck.

      • UncookedSelachimorpha 9.1.1

        100% Sabine!

        We need to tax the people with wealth – who are universally recognised to pay less proportionally than everyone else.

    • RedBaronCV 9.2

      Personally if Grant is thinking this then he is absolutely nuts – it's a RW dream. The people who currently work pay say 20% tax, !5% gst ,12% in student loans so 47% in total are now going to pay for their own unemployment? And they will – companies will make sure that this doesn't impact on them and next thing it will be privatised..

      Just about anything else would be better.

      Measures spreading the available work and money over more people rather than only some being pushed down to zero would be a good start and a hedge against automation. Rather than redundancy – giving people fewer hours, cutting executive payrolls to the agreed minimum and then topping up with welfare and dragging the gig economy in would all be a good start. Booting off our economy the predatory overseas ownership of some sectors and units with a sinking lid policy

      Reducing welfare costs by streamlining the power and telco sectors and making them community owned, rearranging over time the rent subsidies to be ownership subsides and putting people into house that they own or co own with the state.

  10. weka 10

    KJT, are you using the mobile or desktop version of TS on your phone/pad?

  11. KJT 11

    @Weka. Desktop/cellphone and a selection of 4 different browsers. Played with security and pop up settings also. Haven't managed to get replies to work on any of them. They work for my post in the dashboard though.

    Even comments only work after refreshing the browser each time.

    Obviously requires a Geek level above mine?

    • weka 11.1

      Does it work on a computer?

      Yes, Ancient Geek level I believe. Hoping he will be around soon. It's affecting lots of commenters.

  12. KJT 12

    @Pat 8.1.

    Originally, like super, and many other tax provided social wages, ACC was a fully funded PAYGO scheme.

    Which works fine as we are paying through current taxes/fees for current consumption, and the amount needed is predictable and constant.

    Neither need to accumulate money to work. That is just taking more fees than are required to make private finance, money.

    The idea of both being like private insurance, where you accumulate investment funds, from fees, to pay out later, is both theft from the fee payers/claimants and a means of making private provision/sale look more competitive and attractive.

    Not how Woodhouse originally intended.

    • solkta 12.1

      Works fine until you have a huge demographic bubble come through at the same time as increasing lifespans. I don't think it is fine for young people to be carrying the burden of Super for the boomers. This problem was obvious for the future when Muldoon set the system up. Not such an issue now with our birthrate consistently at or just below replacement and lifespans becoming stable, but certainly something that should have been more effectively addressed while the situation was unfolding.

      • RedBaronCV 12.1.1

        Boomer superannuation would not be such a big deal if Bill English had kept the top tax rate up and also the contributions to the Cullen fund. The top tax rate was effectively being levied on basically the boomers in good high earning jobs at the height of their earnings ( and a few others)as a group and being put into the Cullen group fund to level out the super impact of the same boomers. With the youngest boomers now around sixty we could revisit it but it’s fairly late in the day.

        Key absolutely squandered an awful lot of financial future proofing.

    • Pat 12.2

      If, and it currently is a big if, you believe that MMT is a viable theory, then there is no need for taxation or a sovereign wealth fund…personally im undecided but I err to the MMT argument which would mean that the need to generate a return is unnecessary….but either way there is no requirement for that return to be held by the private sector….it could (and imo ) be public

  13. Andre 13

    When "even Fox News" starts trending, you know exactly what's happened, right?

    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/trump-military-even-fox-news_n_5f52a628c5b6946f3eb1b5ab

    Then take a squiz at this chart and ponder whether military veterans are really a group the tinyfingers twittertwat really wants to go out of his way to personally directly insult.

    https://www.statista.com/statistics/250366/percentage-of-us-population-who-are-veterans/

  14. That dinosaur Chris Trotter never misses a chance to give the Greens a kicking. Does he want Collins as PM?

    http://bowalleyroad.blogspot.com/2020/09/a-sorry-excuse-for-green-party.html

    No mention of the fact that Labour is also against money going to private schools and was involved in the decision and could have blocked it if it had any principles.

    No mention of the Green's Wealth Tax. Surely a leftie like Trotter should support this and so give a balanced view of the Greens? errr no it seems.

    No mention of Shaw's excellent work on Climate Change-the major issue for this election and for future generations.

    No its all about an all-government decision relating to a paltry $11.7m (actually it turns out $2.9m) being sheeted home to Shaw 100%.

    Trotter hates the Greens.

    • Dennis Frank 14.1

      Don't worry, BG, ole Chris is just doing his thing. When you write an essay, you need an angle to provide perspective, you need framing so others can get it, and you need to dress it up with rhetoric to give it a bit of punch.

      Dunno how much those newspapers who publish his columns pay him, but it would at least supply a steady stream of pocket money, eh?

      So there's a thrust of professionalism involved in his writing that we ought to take into account. I wouldn't dismiss his point in this one: James sets himself up for it by presenting as the archetypal suit-wearer. As a bridge between centrists & leftists, he's been fully functional until now. Marketing 1.01 says you gotta talk to customers in the language they understand, right?

      So to sell the green message to mainstreamers he must present as someone who exemplifies a professional politician who is competent at working the system while retaining authenticity. The corporate image from his prior career is handy for that.

      a genuine Green Party

      When Chris wrote those words, he didn't have a clue what he was talking about. An authentic Green Party would represent the entire Green movement. Not just the third of it that self-identifies as leftist.

      His political experience was in the New Labour Party 30 years ago when I became a Greens activist. So you're right – he was an Andertonian dinosaur clinging onto the form of the Labour Party the Rogernomes had trashed.

      He has admitted in print that his political stance derives from his father. Unreasonable, therefore, to expect him to be able to think for himself – the past defeats the future, being genuinely progressive is rendered impossible. As for being sufficiently radical to provide a positive alternative, forget it! If he was capable of charting new conceptual terrain for us to explore, he'd have done so long ago…

      • Bearded Git 14.1.1

        Cheers Dennis…all very true. The problem is that Trotter writes very well, has wide circulation and my guess is that enough people believe what he spouts to do damage to the Green vote.

        So I will continue to worry .

      • Pat 14.1.2

        Chris Trotter may not have a vision for the future (and he is hardly alone in that) but he does have a knowledge of the past…curious thing is the past (especially recent) keeps showing itself to influence the current…whod have thought?

        • Dennis Frank 14.1.2.1

          Yeah he's often good with drawing conclusions from the past & pointing to current relevance. That's usually helpful to readers, particularly when reminding us of factors which may have slipped our minds.

          Our necessity being post-covid recovery, however, alerts us to a likelihood of the past being irrelevant. Brave new world. The Greek gets that…

  15. greywarshark 15

    Thanks lprent – hope the updating goes smoothly and you can have a glass of something with Lyn and stick your nose outside into fresh air and be in the greenery.

  16. ScottGN 16

    @Bearded Git 14

    Nobody reads Trotter anyway. He’s just an old windbag. So why get worked up about it?

  17. KJT 17

    @Solkta and RBCV at 12.

    http://kjt-kt.blogspot.com/2012/06/on-new-zealands-retirement-income.html

    "Super has always been paid for by current production. However you finingle it financially, whether through current taxation or savings, it still comes from the production of the current generation.

    If we want to keep super affordable we should tax the current generation to invest in a sustainable future. Invest in energy, housing, education and other infrastructure so that we can keep all our people. Not in financial ponzi schemes which will fall over in the next GFC."

  18. greywarshark 18

    Covid-19 ratings for countries most prepared etc. https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/425315/new-zealand-ranked-second-safest-covid-19-country-by-forbes

    NZ second to Germany, South Korea third even though they have had such a big outbreak. The point is that this can happen anywhere and they take measures to control it unlike some.

    Next down – (I looked up Forbes info to find Australia. Why wouldn't Radionz include Australia in their report? Oz is after us again to continue tourism with Queensland and NSW I think!)

    Switzerland, which was first, has dropped back to fourth. Japan is fifth, and Australia and China are sixth and seventh.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnkoetsier/2020/09/03/the-100-safest-countries-for-covid-19-updated/#2b346257909e

  19. ScottGN 19

    @Bearded Git 16.1

    I don’t think anyone seriously believes that Trotter has the capacity to shift even one vote. Read him for the entertainment if you want (I used to).

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    I am feeling a bit impish today and so for no particular reason I thought I would share this thought, which I first posted over on twitter: “Hurricanes, wildfires, floods, heatwaves, street protests, armed vigilante militias, a lethal pandemic and a corrupt authoritarian using the federal government for partisan and ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Government too slow in deploying military to assist with Covid-19 response, former defence minister ...
    Wayne Mapp (Photo: Tsmith.nz via Wikimedia) A former Minister of Defence says the government was too slow to involve the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) in New Zealand’s response to Covid-19. But Wayne Mapp, a National MP from 1996-2011 who served as Minister of Defence for three ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Underwhelming
    Transport is our second biggest polluter after agriculture, making up 17% of our national emissions. Cars and trucks emit 15 million tons of CO2 every year. So, if we're serious about tackling climate change, we need to eliminate this entirely. Public transport and better urban design will be a key ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Five things we know about COVID-19, and five we don’t
    Five things we’ve learnt 1. We know where the virus ultimately came from We know that the virus originally came from bats, and most probably a species of horseshoe bat in South East Asia. However, the spike protein in SARS-CoV-2, which allows the virus to attach to cells and infect ...
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  • Stewardship land is conservation land
    The Greens' greatest disappointment while in government this term has been the failure to implement a ban on mining on conservation land. Promised by Jacinda Ardern immediately after gaining power, it had long been assumed that the problem was NZ First (who have a long history of environmental vandalism). But ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The price of Green co-operation just went up
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Eligibility expanded for COVID-19 leave support
    The expanded scheme will cover: People who have COVID-19 like symptoms and meet the Ministry of Health’s criteria, and need to self-isolate while awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test. People who are directed to self-isolate by a Medical Officer of Health or their delegate or on advice of their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Seasonal work visa available to more people
    The Government is putting in place a range of immigration policy changes to help fill labour shortages in key industries while ensuring New Zealanders, who have lost jobs due to COVID-19, have the chance to find new employment. “Two key sectors we are moving to help are horticulture and wine ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • More border exceptions for critical roles
    The Government has established class exceptions for border entry for a limited number of veterinarians, deep sea fishing crew, as well as agricultural and horticultural machinery operators. “Tight border restrictions remain the backbone of the Government’s border strategy to protect New Zealand against COVID-19 and ensure New Zealand citizens and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Crown will not appeal Dodds v Southern Response decision
    The Crown will not appeal the Court of Appeal decision in the Dodds v Southern Response case, Grant Robertson announced today. “Southern Response will be paying the damages awarded by the Court to Mr and Mrs Dodds shortly. The Crown was already meeting their legal costs for this appeal. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Crucial PGF investments for Northland
    The Provincial Growth Fund is investing nearly $30 million in a diverse range of projects that will create immediate and long-term jobs and lift economic and social outcomes for Northland and its people. Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones made the announcement today in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • $27million investment in global vaccine facility
    The Coalition Government has committed to invest $27 million in COVID-19 vaccine development through the global COVAX Facility, Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The COVAX Facility is a key part of our COVID-19 Vaccine Strategy to obtain safe and effective vaccines. It allows us to invest in a high-quality, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government backing Māori landowners
    The Government will provide up to $1.69 million through the One Billion Trees programme to Māori landowners to make their whenua more productive through the planting of forests, both native and exotic, and improve economic and environmental outcomes, Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced. “Around 1.5 million ha of land ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New tools to make nature more accessible
    People planning to head outdoors now have a resource that lets them know how accessible an area is for people with varying levels of mobility, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. The Halberg Foundation, Sensibel, and the Department of Conservation (DOC) have launched Accessibel, a new tool which helps ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • PGF makes Māori history more accessible
    One of the most significant battle sites of the 1860s Land Wars will receive $2.96 million from the Provincial Growth Fund to improve the site and help tell the New Zealand story to visitors, Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced. Nanaia Mahuta ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Making it official: The journey of te reo Māori | Kia whakapūmautia: Ngā piki me ngā heke o te r...
    The journey towards recognising Māori as an official language and taonga has been captured as a web series and launched today during Te Wiki o te Reo Māori, announced Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “Te reo Māori is a living language, and understanding its significance, and pathways to ...
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    5 days ago
  • Better-than-forecast GDP reflects decision to protect New Zealand
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    5 days ago
  • Boost for COVID-19 related Pacific education needs
    The Government is investing $39.7 Million over four years to support the educational needs of Pacific learners and families in the regions hardest hit by COVID-19, with Auckland getting an immediate boost, Associate Minister of Education Jenny Salesa says.   “Like all New Zealanders Pacific families want learners to do well ...
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    5 days ago
  • More resources for kiwi conservation
    New Zealand’s goal of 100,000 kiwi by 2030 is being helped by an extra $19.7 million in funding to accelerate iwi and community efforts to protect kiwi, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced. “$19.7 million of Jobs for Nature funding is being invested in kiwi conservation activities including increased predator ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Improving access to affordable electricity
    Ensuring New Zealanders can get the best deal on their electricity takes a step in the right direction today with the South Island launch of the EnergyMate pilot run by the Electricity Retailers’ Association, says Minister of Energy and Resources, Dr Megan Woods. EnergyMate is an industry-led programme providing coaching ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government achieves 50 percent women on state boards
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter announced today that the Government has reached its target of 50 percent on women on state sector board and committees – setting a new record level of women on state sector boards. “This Government is committed to having more women in leadership roles - ...
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    6 days ago
  • Record transport investment to help economic recovery and save lives
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford released today the final Government Policy Statement on land transport (GPS) 2021 which outlines the planned $48 billion investment in services and infrastructure over the next decade. “The final GPS supports our Government’s five-point plan for economic recovery by confirming our record investments in transport infrastructure ...
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    6 days ago
  • Advancing clean energy technology
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    6 days ago
  • Major milestone reached in Pike River Re-entry
    The critical area for forensic examination known as Pit Bottom in Stone has been reached in what is a major milestone for the Pike River re-entry project, Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little announced. “The infrastructure located in Pit Bottom in Stone is of very significant interest in ...
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    6 days ago
  • Economic recovery guides Govt response to retirement income policy review
    The Government is working on how New Zealand’s retirement income policies and settings can best support Kiwis in light of the COVID-19 economic recovery, with the help of the Retirement Commissioner’s latest review, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said. “The Retirement Commissioner’s three-yearly review into New Zealand’s retirement ...
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    6 days ago
  • Iwi community hub opens in Murupara
    A new digital hub and development centre in Murupara will be instrumental in growing the region’s productivity, said Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau at the official opening of two community initiatives today. “I’m pleased to be here celebrating a significant milestone for two projects set to make a ...
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    6 days ago
  • PREFU shows economy doing better than forecast
    PREFU shows economy doing better than forecast Unemployment to peak at 7.8%, down from 9.8% forecast in the Budget Year-to-June accounts show tax revenue, debt and OBEGAL better than forecast Global forecast downgraded as COVID-19 second waves and uncertainty grows Balanced plan to support critical public services, manage debt and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Spruce-up for Ōtaki community facilities
    The Kāpiti Coast town of Ōtaki will receive $1.4 million in Government funding for two projects providing scores of jobs for locals while improving community facilities, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The Māoriland Charitable Trust will receive a $900,000 Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) grant to upgrade the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • PGF funding for Jobs for Nature programme
    The Provincial Growth Fund will provide $11.88 million to fund fencing and waterway projects nationwide that will improve the environment and create jobs in their communities, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. “These projects will create more than 100 jobs nationwide with work starting within the next couple ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Procurement to promote jobs, Māori and Pasifika businesses and sustainability
    As part of the COVID-19 recovery, the Government has strengthened its procurement rules to ensure its annual $42 billion spend creates more jobs, uses more sustainable construction practices and results in better outcomes for Māori and Pasifika, Government Ministers announced today.   Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford says the $42 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Timaru’s Theatre Royal to be upgraded and new heritage facility built
    The Government is supporting a major upgrade of Timaru’s iconic Theatre Royal and the construction of a new connected Heritage Facility museum and exhibition space with $11.6 million from the Government’s Infrastructure Fund, Jacinda Ardern announced today. “We heard the call from the community and the council. The Theatre Royal ...
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    1 week ago
  • District Court judge appointed
    Chrissy Montague (formerly Armstrong), barrister of Auckland has been appointed as a District Court Judge with Family Court jurisdiction to be based in Wellington, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Ms Montague commenced practice in Auckland in 1987 and went into general practice dealing with Wills, Estates, Trusts, Conveyancing, Relationship Property ...
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    1 week ago
  • Approval given to Commercial Film and Video Production Proposal
      A Proposal to provide for the development and operation of commercial film and video production facilities in areas of Christchurch has been given the go ahead. Hon Poto Williams, Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, has approved the Proposal, which was prepared and submitted by Regenerate Christchurch. Minister Williams ...
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    1 week ago
  • Supporting a thriving wānanga sector to benefit Māori learners
    As part of the Government’s focus on building closer partnerships with Māori and enhancing the quality of, and access to, Māori medium education, a payment of $8 million will be made to Te Wānanga o Raukawa in partial recognition of its Waitangi Tribunal claim (WAI 2698), Associate Education Minister Kelvin ...
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    1 week ago
  • Jobs for Nature boosts efforts to restore Kaimai-Mamaku
    The Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage has announced a $19 million investment over four years in an important forest restoration project involving a partnership between the Department of Conservation, iwi/hapū, the Bay of Plenty and Waikato Regional Councils, community conservation groups and organisations such as Forest and Bird across the ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand first in the world to require climate risk reporting
    New Zealand will be the first country in the world to require the financial sector to report on climate risks, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. The changes build on the huge progress this Government has made to tackle the climate crisis. “Today is another step on ...
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    1 week ago
  • Economic data highlights impact of Auckland moving out of Level 3
    Economic activity across the Auckland region and the country bounced back to levels experienced under Alert Level 1 following Auckland’s move out of Alert Level 3, analysis in the Treasury’s latest Weekly Economic Update shows. The analysis of economic data since Auckland’s move out of Level 3 shows: Auckland card ...
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    1 week ago
  • PM statement on Cabinet COVID-19 Alert Level review
    Takiri mai te ata, ka ao, ka ao, ka awatea, tihei mauriora! Tātou katoa ngā iwi o Aotearoa, tēnā koutou! Tēnā tātou e whakanuia ana i te wiki nei, te wiki o te reo Māori Greeting to you all from Otepoti, Dunedin.  This week is the Māori Language week and ...
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    1 week ago
  • More mental wellbeing services for young people in regions
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  • Government joins forces with Central Otago communities to clean up waterways
    The Manuherekia catchment in Central Otago is the third exemplar catchment to be targeted as part of the Government’s plan to clean up waterways by supporting community-led programmes.   Environment Minister David Parker said the Manuherekia catchment is vitally important to the people of Central Otago.  “The Manuherekia rises in the ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government confirms new Dunedin Hospital design
    The Government has agreed on a preferred design for the new Dunedin Hospital featuring two separate buildings, and has provided funding for the next stages of work.   Minister of Health Chris Hipkins says Cabinet has approved in principle the detailed business case for the new hospital, giving people in ...
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    1 week ago
  • Join the one in a million reo Māori moment
    New Zealanders across the country are set to mark history as part of the Māori Language Week commemorations led by Te Taura Whiri i te reo Māori this year.  Māori Development Minister, Nanaia Mahuta says the initiative will mark history for all the right reasons including making te reo Māori ...
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    1 week ago
  • Education initiatives add to momentum of Te Wiki o te Reo Māori 2020
    More than 1000 teachers, support staff and school leaders have graduated from a programme designed to grow their capability to use te reo Māori in their teaching practice, as part of the Government’s plan to integrate te reo Māori into education, Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Being trialled ...
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    1 week ago
  • The Toloa Tertiary Scholarships for 2021 aims to increase Pacific participation in STEM
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio, says the Toloa Tertiary Scholarships which aims to encourage more Pacific student numbers participating and pursuing STEM-related studies in 2021, are now open. “These tertiary scholarships are administrated by the Ministry for Pacific Peoples (MPP), and are part of MPP’s overall Toloa ...
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    1 week ago
  • Financial support for timber industry
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand seeks answers to the Gulf Livestock 1 tragedy
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced that New Zealand is exploring the viability of working with partners to conduct a search for the black box on the Gulf Livestock 1. “We know how much it would mean to the families of those on the ship to understand more about ...
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    1 week ago