Open mike 05/12/2023

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 5th, 2023 - 56 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 …

56 comments on “Open mike 05/12/2023 ”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    If you want to know what shape our Topham-Guerin, post truth government is going to take then watch how it reacts via it's social media proxies to todays protests.

    The Maori Party are fools who have taken the bait and decided it's going to allow the far-right to set the agenda and enable a government that will thrive on a permanent culture and race war.

    Don't get me wrong – I believe that Maori should protest, and protest strongly, but only once we've had time to assess how serious this government actually is on reimposing a settler state agenda.

    At this point, going off half-cocked with your own inflamatory rhetoric simply plays into the hands of right wing hard liners in National and it's partners.

    Luxon is heavily influenced by Cameronian economics and the sees the Tory electoral strategy of permanent divide and rule with the politics of culture war distraction as a model to be admired. He and Willis yearn to impose austerity on behalf of the rich and their strategy is clearly to govern via divide and rule. The Maori party making it easy for them doesn't do the left any favours.

    • Tiger Mountain 1.1

      Nah, Te Pāti Māori are leading here with pre–emptive action. Oh that the NZCTU and PSA would do the same. The coalition agreements make it quite clear there is to be a full frontal attack on Māoridom and organised labour particularly, as well as the working class generally.

      TPM will likely do well on their own terms, but the impact will be even greater if pākehā and other Tauiwi join in. Debbie Ngarewa Packer has made it clear that “Ngati Tiriti” are more than welcome–people that understand that if Māori do well, so do the rest of us.

      A persistent fear of NZ capitalists and torys over many years is class left unity between Māori and sections of non Māori. Glimmers of that happened at Ihumatāo a couple of years back and it will gain strength as the new gens begin to assert their numerical superiority over boomers.

      n.b. I’m in the older group and many of us have been left aligned all our lives, are not multiple property owners or grumpy bal’heads, in fact elder poverty particularly for women is increasing so “boomer” is just a convenient descriptor rather than a catchall.

      • weka 1.1.1

        I support action now, but I think TPM have fucked this up. I came back to writing at TS after a 15 months break because of Ihumatāo, and started decolonisation and anti-racism mahi in the 80s. But I won't support a movement that uses images of pistols in its protest advertising.

        Either TPM knew exactly what they were doing and didn't care, or they didn't think this through. Either way, I decided last night not to put up a post on the protest today. I'm lucky there is no march locally so I don't face the dilemma to stay away or not.

        In case it's not clear: the overriding current meaning of guns in NZ is the Chch Mosque murders. We are also in a political culture war over what is happening in Palestine/Israel, where people are dying and being damaged inter-generationally as we speak. Only last year we had people on the steps of parliament wanting to hang MPs. I raised my eyebrows at Willie Jackson's use of the term going to war, pre-election about Te Tiriti, but the pistols is a step too far.

        If Māori see that image in ways different from Pākehā, all good. But this is a national debate at a time of great cultural divide. Whatever the reasoning for the image, it's either exceptionally tone deaf or intentionally inflammatory. It's also going to lose TPM allies. If someone like me is taking a step back today, there will be many less committed people who will just turn away.

        Of all the things we need right now, peace is very very high on the list. This doesn't preclude direct action, but the messaging and the vision need to be clear.

        • weka

          Just looked at Drowsy's link, good to see none of the pistol graphic on display. Sounds like a good action from that wee piece.

        • Tiger Mountain

          The nationwide protests were quietly and efficiently organised and good natured from what I have discerned from multiple reports and images, did not see a single gun. Unlike grumpy Groundswell’s efforts.

          Te Pāti Māori are leading from the front at the moment and Pākehā and other Tauiwi that do not support this Govt. should join them or do their own actions.

          • weka

            I'll support them anytime they're not doing stupid shit like that image.

            • Robert Guyton

              weka – you know the well-worn image of a hand-gun that fires a … flag, right?

              One that makes us laugh.



              Too subtle?

              • weka

                imo no-one should be using gun imagery in politics in NZ at this time. No-one. For the reasons I already laid out. We're too far down the track of shit going sideways. Probably the only option at this point is to start listening to people we disagree with and trying to find common ground. I know the various groups in NZ who will feel alarm at that image. Does anyone else here? Are those groups to be written off? Ostracised and ridiculed? Called racist? How does this further Māori sovereignty, or holding true to Te Tiriti, or creating a post-colonial NZ?

                • Robert Guyton

                  So, Tame Iti and his "shotgun – flag" action – you're not a supporter?

                  He was/is.

                  • weka

                    totally supported it then, not sure I would now, depends on the context. But there is a difference between a political party using gun iconography in a call for mass civil disobedience in 2023, and the symbolic protest actions of a man in a different time.

                    Similar to how there was a difference between the protestors occupying parliament last year and wanting to hang MPs, and marches back in the day where protests had effigies of MPs.

          • weka

            …did not see a single gun. Unlike grumpy Groundswell’s efforts.

            Right. So best we not continue to stoke the culture wars. It's not about whether Māori take guns to a protest (I wouldn’t expect that, and I’m glad to hear they didn’t), it's about the messaging and what we are trying to achieve.

            • Robert Guyton

              You're "glad they didn't"?

              You thought they might..?

              Pop-guns have … corks.

              The "guns in question" has "surprise flags".


              • weka

                please reread my comment as you appear to have misunderstood what I said about my expectations.

                Also, I clarified what my point was (the messaging at this point in history), so I'm not really interested in debating someone's misinterpretation of my thoughts here.

        • adam

          I read this post from you with a bit of confusion going through my mind. Where were you when everyone was putting war porn up on this site? The daily images of bombs, guns and killing in Ukraine?

          Compared to a image of a pistol, is was bloody gross. And it went on and on and on.

          As for the pistols in question, stand back a hundred meters and wear a oil skin jacket and the odds on it will feel like being hit by a small stone.

          That aside, they are colonial pistols and more a representation of how colonisation happened, rather than promoting violence.

          • weka

            I read this post from you with a bit of confusion going through my mind. Where were you when everyone was putting war porn up on this site? The daily images of bombs, guns and killing in Ukraine?

            Please link to three examples so I know what you are referring to. If you are talking about posts, I frequently disagree with other authors here, and they me. If you mean commenters, I'd rather stick pins in my eyes that follow that debate. I do have a post in my head though, about who on the left is spoiling for a fight, and what happened to the peace movement.

            TS isn't trying to run a revolution (more's the pity). TPM are. Their messaging matters.

            As for the pistols in question, stand back a hundred meters and wear a oil skin jacket and the odds on it will feel like being hit by a small stone.

            no idea what that means, feel free to try again.

            That aside, they are colonial pistols and more a representation of how colonisation happened, rather than promoting violence.

            Yes, to a portion of the population that is what they will see. What about the rest? Come on, this is basic comms. Also, it's basic strategy. Do you want a war? or do you want radical change via peace? If the latter, please explain how the strategy takes into account people that disagree. Do you want to force them to change? Force them to agree with your values? Imo this doesn't work, and it's why we have the kind of culture wars we currently do.

            • lprent

              The daily images of bombs, guns and killing in Ukraine?

              Please link to three examples so I know what you are referring to.

              He cannot. I just had a little glance in the media library which is where we put most of the images that we use. I am limited to searches on filenames, image tag text, and the images attached to the contents of the post.

              Virtually all images involving small arms on this site are for posts on gun-control or the gun lobby here and in the US.

              There are a small set of images of tanks, bombs, warplanes or etc have been used in anti-war posts (and are typically WW2 images) by Bill or Mike Smith. Couple of images of tanks at Tiananmen Square

              The exception related to an active combat is one image of a ruined Russian tank that I used for the thumbnail image on a post.

              Images of bombs just bring up images of Bomber when he was much younger.

              The images are selected to provide context to posts. They aren’t there for adam’s porn collection. It makes me wonder just what kinds of war-porn that adam keeps on his computers.

              adam is simply lying about authors. Not a wise thing to do.

          • joe90

            the odds on it will feel like being hit by a small stone

            I wondered about that so I rang my mate the black -powder enthusiast.

            He reckoned the effective range of a .50/.70 calibre 18thC flintlock is between 25m-50m and while the energy loss at 100m is severe, a projectile of that calibre could still knock you over and if you're unlucky, penetrate.

            • Robert Guyton


              Symbolism 101.

            • adam

              a projectile of that calibre could still knock you over and if you're unlucky, penetrate.

              You would be unlucky to be knocked over at 100m, with my caveat of a oil skin jacket, should make penetration all but impossible.

              Having fired replicas, also hard to shot straight with the bloody things. 25m-50m your lucky to hit a target consistently

              At very close range 0-15 meters bloody deadly.

        • Populuxe1

          I'm sure if Te Pāti Māori wants the nice Pākehā coloniser lady's opinion, they'll ask for it. Fulminating about a divided nation is NACT's line.

          • weka

            Nice example of spoiling for a fight, cheers.

            • Populuxe1

              Just pointing out the obvious. Māori don't need Pākehā tone policing or respectability politics. This protest isn't for you.

              • weka

                I didn't tell TPM what to do, I shared my thinking about their strategy.

                I'm part of one partner of the Treaty. It affects all of us. I'm clear enough in my own commitments and values to not be bothered by being told I'm a white lady coloniser who should shut up, water off a ducks back. It's not like my commitment to decolonisation changes, and again, this is something that affects all of us.

                It does present the problem though of how we (on the left) work towards our goals. Or are you suggesting that only Māori want decolonisation and to uphold the Treaty?

                • Populuxe1

                  I know we Pākehā like to tell ourselves it's a partnership, but obviously in a colonised society with an obvious lack of equity, it isn't. We're conquerors that Māori, very graciously by signing the treaty, have acknowledged as "guests" for want of a better word, and it's their feelings that matter in this instance. Being a "good" Pākehā means knowing when to step back, sit down, shut up, and listen. It would be like me wandering into your living room and complaining about the curtains.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 1.2

      Just supporting from the sidelines (footpath); positive vibes at the protest gathering steam in Palmy – lots of smiles and flag-waving, a good mix of (mostly) young and old, and plenty of family groups. Negligible police presence as far as I could see.

      A bit disappointing there are so many (maybe 100) cars involved, but it’s a convoy protest, and certainly slowed traffic as it poured onto Tremaine Ave.

      I see there’s already mounting concern over the loss of productivity.

    • AB 1.3

      Not sure there is a lot of point in waiting. The coalition's intentions are pretty clear. It's possible that Luxon might dial it back if there is sufficient mainstream non-Maori concern about what's happening. Or he might cave to Seymour and Peters and it will turn out to be worse than expected. But the overall direction is set.

      I do agree though that TPM need to stay intellectually respectable in what they say. The one that concerns me most is throwing the "genocide" word around too freely. The NZ colonial project (unlike others) is not explicitly genocidal. Genocide in the early period was accidental through imported pathogens, and in the modern period it is more case of neglecting Maori poverty and poor health. The NZ colonial project had other ways of trying to eliminate the indigenous – mostly assimilation as a brown proletariat and cultural erasure from public life (apart from ceremonial functions). These tactics now appear to have failed by 2023, which is why race relations are back on the front page.

    • Peter 2.1

      What occurred to me on reading the story was the famous 'need to know' justification for information making its way out into the big wide world.

      You know, like Winston and his National not-mates before the 2017 election. The good thing for him now is there will be a slew of public servants who can have the finger pointed at them while he plays leakorama bobsy-die.

  2. observer 3

    It's hard to keep up with all the promises already broken by Luxon, so here's yet another one that has gone under the radar.

    Remember the "taxpayers' receipt"? It was in the headlines back in May, one of Luxon's bright ideas … for a headline (he doesn't do policy).

    "A government I lead will introduce new requirements for clear financial reporting to taxpayers. Individuals will receive a taxpayer’s receipt each year and Treasury will produce an annual Report Card for Taxpayers to clearly show government spending and tax."

    National To Restore Fiscal Discipline | Scoop News

    It was widely mocked at the time, since the info was already available anyway – and yes, it has now been scrapped.

    (h/t Toby Manhire at the SpinOff)

    Again, note the language Luxon uses. A clear commitment … which meant absolutely nothing. Like most of his words.

  3. Ad 4

    Shoutout to all those marching today.

    You are our partners, brothers and sisters.

    Looking forward to more.

  4. ianmac 5

    It is incredible that given the huge number of speeches delivered by Luxon, telling us that the terrible cost of living and dreadful inflation is stopping good people from getting ahead or even getting enough food on the table, he/they do this miserable thing.

    One of the first things Luxon's lot does is punish the workers. By cancelling the FPA they are blocking the promise about helping everyone. Shame. Shame!

  5. SPC 6

    The PM says its too early to protest against the hydra headed government … the give us more time to really deserve it attitude is a bit concerning …

  6. Patience ! Let's just wait awhile and see. Kia pai to ra.

    [If you feel the same way as I about troll bots then you’ll appreciate this is a warning. A good start would be to acknowledge it – Incognito]

    • observer 7.1

      We have seen. It's the Coalition agreement.

      What exactly should we be waiting for? An announcement that they didn't really mean it?

      If there are changes to their plans (very possible) it will be because of pushback, not patience. Governments don't usually say "thanks for not criticising, now here's your reward".

    • Incognito 7.2

      Mod note

    • observer 8.1

      You know that when you say "Nazis" you're handing them a free gift, right?

      The reality is bad enough, stick to it.

      • adam 8.1.1

        Calling them the extreme right, or Christian Nationalist might get the point across more. Rather than "nazi"

        • weka

          I'm a fan of neoliberal proto-fascists too, but probably needs updating from the FJK years.

      • Muttonbird 8.1.2

        What other parties in political history enlisted the public service for consolidation of power?

        I'm sure there's a list.

        • Drowsy M. Kram

          They may be 'Nazi-adjacent' in that particular regard – still not Nazis though, imho.

        • Populuxe1

          Nearly every socialist, communist and conservative party that has ever taken power? None of which I would call "Nazis". Get back to me when they start building camps and rounding people up.

        • Belladonna

          Virtually every brand of communist government for starters.

  7. That_guy 9

    I just want to send a big shout-out to TPM and Tākuta Ferris for brightening up my day by insulting an irrelevant German aristocrat inbred who leeches off taxpayers. Thanks, I genuinely LOL'd. More like that, please!

    As you can probably tell I'm not much of a royalist.

    • That_guy 9.1

      Insulting the King three times, not just once? Santa, I know I've been good this year, but I haven't been that good. I don't deserve this present, but I'll take it. Now my day is three times as bright!

      But Stuff noticed that three Te Pāti Māori MPs, co-leaders Debbie Ngarewa-Packer, Waititi and Te Tai Tonga MP Tākuta Ferris, did not stick to the script.

      Instead of pledging allegiance to 'King Charles III', or in te reo 'Kīngi Tiāre te Tuatoru', the two MPs referred to Kīngi Harehare te Tuatoru.

      In te reo Māori, harehare can be an insult which refers to a rash. In this phrase, it could be translated as an insult, meaning the rash king, or the objectionable King.

    • Populuxe1 9.2

      Unlike a lot of the potential local candidates for head of state, Charles at least cares about the environment

  8. observer 10

    Every government will see headlines like "PM has confidence in his/her Ministers". Usually after six months, a year, or more. A Minister stuffs up, and the PM must say the obligatory words. Happens to them all.

    This is the fastest headline in political history … it took a week!

    Christopher Luxon has 'every confidence' in Cabinet, after papers leaked | RNZ News

    It's from the same stable as "There is no leadership challenge" or "I am not a crook". If you have to say it, you're already in trouble.

    • Incognito 10.1

      Agreed. Explaining and complaining make you look defensive, which is why politicians avoid it like the plague. Luxon has been defensive so many times already because he and his ‘team’ are shambolic.

  9. Adders 11

    “. . . a bizarrely regressive thing to do.”

    Luxon mocked (already) on the BBC Radio 4 The Now Show, 1 December, “looking into the repeal of the New Zealand smoking ban.”

    (from the 18 minute mark.)

  10. joe90 12

    The numbers creep me TF out.

    Growth in the number of medically assisted deaths in Canada continues in 2022.

    • In 2022, there were 13,241 MAID provisions reported in Canada, accounting for 4.1% of all deaths in Canada.
    • The number of cases of MAID in 2022 represents a growth rate of 31.2% over 2021. All provinces except Manitoba and the Yukon continue to experience a steady year-over-year growth in 2022.
    • When all data sources are considered, the total number of medically assisted deaths reported in Canada since the introduction of federal MAID legislation in 2016 is 44,958.

    • Populuxe1 12.1

      I notice you left out the part where the average age was 77 and around 62% of those were cancer related with the rest being equally unpleasant degenerative conditions. In which case it's demographically consistent with the approaching peak of the baby boom and not especially sinister.

  11. Descendant Of Smith 13

    Why? They have the same aging population as we have – many of whom will become terribly sick and in pain before they die. Allowing a more dignified choice for people I do not have a problem with. Lots of people, including my mum, already had things like DNR (do not resuscitate) on their medical records which some argue goes against their values but clearly her wishes and choice with no pressure from anyone.

    These occurrences, which we are likely going to see more often, are much worse a consequence:

    Elderly man who entered suicide pact with wife but didn't die faces possible five years in jail

    An elderly Paekakariki couple, prominent in the local community, signed a suicide pact before ending their lives together, a Coroners Court has found.

    An 81-year-old man has been charged with trying to murder his wife, but his lawyer says it was part of a suicide pact.

    Those that want to hold on like my father, in immense pain and turning more skeletal every day will, those like my mother who doesn't want to go through all that will not.

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    Worsening child poverty rates support the Coalition Government’s focus on reducing the cost of living and getting people into work, Child Poverty Reduction Minister Louise Upston says. Figures released by Stats NZ today show child poverty rates have increased, with the rising cost of living, driven by inflation, making it ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ announces new support for Ukraine
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins have marked two years since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by announcing further support and sanctions, and extending our military assistance. “Russia launched its illegal, full-scale invasion of Ukraine, in blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter,” Mr Peters says. ...
    1 week ago
  • Finalists of Ahuwhenua Trophy announced
    Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka announced the two finalists for this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy at Parliament yesterday.  “I am pleased to see such a high calibre of Māori dairy farms featured as finalists this year,” Mr Potaka says. The finalists for 2024 are: Wairarapa Moana ki Pouakani Whakatōhea Māori Trust ...
    1 week ago
  • Finance Minister to meet Australian Treasurer
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis will travel to Australia today to meet her Australian counterpart, Treasurer Jim Chalmers.    “New Zealand and Australia have an incredibly strong trade and investment relationship. The Closer Economic Relations and Single Economic Market are powerful engines for growth on both sides of the Tasman.     “I will ...
    1 week ago
  • PM shocked and saddened at death of Efeso Collins
    “I am truly shocked and saddened at the news of Efeso Collins’ sudden death,” Prime Minister Christopher Luxon says. “Efeso was a good man, always friendly and kind, and a true champion and advocate for his Samoan and South Auckland communities. “Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go to his family, ...
    1 week ago
  • Greater support for social workers
    The Coalition Government is enhancing the professionalism of the social work sector and supporting the vulnerable people who rely on them, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says.  The Social Workers Registration Legislation Amendment Bill passed its third reading in Parliament today. It amends the Social Workers Registration Legislation ...
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers greater freedom and choice for sick New Zealanders
    The coalition government is delivering on its commitment to making principled decisions by getting rid of red tape that doesn’t make sense and allowing sick New Zealanders greater freedom and choice to purchase effective cold and flu medicines. A bill amending the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975 is being introduced, and changes to the Medicines ...
    1 week ago
  • Government begins reset of welfare system
    The Coalition Government is taking early action to curb the surge in welfare dependency that occurred under the previous government by setting out its expectations around employment and the use of benefit sanctions, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. In 2017, 60,588 sanctions were applied to beneficiaries who ...
    1 week ago
  • State of the Nation
    Ka nui te mihi kia koutou. Kia ora, good morning, talofa, malo e lelei, bula vinaka, da jia hao, namaste, sat sri akal, assalamu alaikum. Thank you for coming to my first State of the Nation as Prime Minister. Thank you for coming to a speech where I don’t just ...
    2 weeks ago
  • West Coast tourism attractions officially open
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will attend the official opening of two highly anticipated tourism projects on the West Coast today – Pike29 Memorial Track, dedicated to the memory of the Pike River miners, and Pounamu Pathway. “The Pike29 Memorial Track is a way to remember and honour the men ...
    2 weeks ago

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