Open mike 05/11/2010

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 5th, 2010 - 63 comments
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63 comments on “Open mike 05/11/2010”

  1. ZeeBop 1

    CV made the point

    Open mike 04/11/2010

    National play the majority off against minority interests, classic fascism.

    The neo-liberal vision of no regulation is essentially fascism since it
    plays to the strength of the powerful, and insures they won’t get any oversight
    or impediment to there operations.

    National push urgency, like fascists, to avoid explanations and play on
    individuals willingness to accept change that does not effect them,
    without any talk about the rights, or costs, or choice.

    If someone wants to smoke then surely they will fine a way, a black
    market in tobacco will arise, so the democratic thing to do would be to
    raise the cost of tobacco to reflect the damage to people, to kids who
    see smoking as acceptable, and make getting tobacco harder to do.
    So limit sales to ‘tobacco’ only stores, then make everyone who
    buys tobacco show id, then if they are a regular have them acknowledge
    they know they will not get a organ donation, that they will be charged
    on top of their health cover out of pocket expenses, etc. That’s
    the democractic way, clearly cite why a practice is wrong by costing
    it and making it harder to do.

    National find it easy to do it the fascist way, and so create more crime,
    criminalize smokers, and making it harder for health providers to treat.
    I mean think about it in 2025 a doctor asks a patient if they smoke, they’re
    told no, its illegal! A smoker can then get a organ donation that they would not
    get a few months eariler. You cannot criminalize bad behaviour, you can
    however frustrate it and make it more expensive.

    • KJT 1.1

      The neo-lib vision is no regulation for the very rich. Big business and the like are allowed to do what they want. For everyone else it is surveillance act, restrictions on the right to strike or act collectively and increased powers for police.
      The so called “free marketers” want regulation for everyone except themselves.

      • ZeeBop 1.1.1

        Arguing no regulation doesn’t mean delivering, just as Hitler promise heaps, much he was never
        going to be able to deliver. Fascists are essentially politicians, whether they ally with the military,
        the industrial complex, or media mogals, all depends on the macro economic environment.
        Arguably, the Nazi’s came to power off the glut of oil – cheap high dense fuel colliding with
        a hundred years of industrial revolution. Nazi’s major threat was communism, hence the
        slant to ‘socialism’, but really Hitler would have done anything and did, to gain and retain power,
        allying with big industry.

        No, National are not about to start up concentration camps, but their methods are not dissimilar
        to those used by the power hungry. The shutout debate, their fawns in the press self-censure, and
        parliament is urged to do the right thing – under ugency.

        No what’s sad is these fascists are also a product of their times, but the times are against
        fascism. There is no Thatcher waiting to loosen finance, there are no German people to
        build armies and man them, there is a massive contraction and collapse of the old high
        dense fuel glut – middle east oil.

        Look every creed has its extremist nutters who use the faith, fit the fiction to the facts,
        and demand if you don’t do as they say you’re look a fool. They won’t argue, cite,
        debate, they damn sure and know what’s right is right, e.g. Tolley national standards.
        The problem is the left, the opposition, the counter argument, that we should get
        in the press we aren’t. The counter argument is quite simple, stop digging, about
        turn, oil demand is outstripping supply and soon will start into decline, now what
        are you going to do about that? Silence.

        Key – nothing. Goff – maybe a capital gains tax.

  2. Bored 2

    Well said ZeeBop, smoking is just another filthy disgusting habit like drinking tea except it is bad for your health. To ban it is merely to drive it underground, which leaves me to wonder how many of the proponents could tell you anything about Prohibition, Al Capone etc.

    Your deconstruct of neo liberalist power and its similarity with fascism will draw some opprobrium, not because it is not accurate but because there is also a “prohibition” against using the “F” word. It is not “polite”. You could use “Corporatist instead”, I personally think Fascist more accurate.

    That the politicians dont see themselves as acting like fascists, and would be offended to be compared to fascists also demonstrates their profound ignorance of knowledge of the recent past.

    • Pascal's bookie 2.1

      The reason people object to the f word being thrown around it is because it has a meaning.

      It’s meaning is slippery enough though without using for every damn thing we don’t like.

      Is fasc1sm Authoritarian? You betcha. But that’s just a necessary condition, it’s not sufficient. We can’t say ‘authoritarian therefore fasc1st’.

      the neolibs are neolibs. They don’t have much respect for democracy, but they do have a lot of respect for individual rights, within their own framework. That is absolutely not a fasc1st approach.

      Likewise, Corporatism/= fascism. Mussolini said that his movement was corporatist, but again, necessary but not sufficient. H1tler said his movement was socialist remember. But he redefined socialist to do so.

      Corporatism does not mean ‘business running the govt’ or ‘governing in the interests of business’ or anything like that.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corporatism

      If a govt acts solely in the interests of business elites, through a belief that what is good for business is good for the state, or whatever other reason, that is not corporatist. It’s plutocratic, which is closer to feudalism, than it is to fasc1sm.

      This is also good, as an overview. I tend to think Paxton captures the err, essence, the best though…

      http://www.anesi.com/Fascism-TheUltimateDefinition.htm

      • Bored 2.1.1

        Nice deconstruct PB, quite instructive if you are looking for strict definitions. I have always struggled with the definitions with regard to fascism simply because the essence of it is too broad and contains so many contradictions that precise definitions become very hard. The only bit which seems a total commonality is the application of power to get results, with a total disregard for democratic as opposed to the property rights of the ruling corporate. Its basically, “we want X and f**k you, we will walk over the top of you to get it”.

        And you are right, I have never regarded corporatism as being the same as “corporations” in the business sense, more power blocks representing interest groups. Having said that the oligarchic corporate businesses to my mind certainly act in a fascist manner.

        • prism 2.1.1.1

          Years ago when I was in Britain and the msm produced sunday magazines that contained thoughtful stuff, I got one on how Fiat and other Italian notable companies coped with fascism. They were pretty friendly with Il Duce. And they are still around.

          anti-spam – examples

  3. Latest Roy Morgan poll, National down 2 to 50.5%, Labour steady at 33%.

    • The Voice of Reason 3.1

      Interesting that Winston maintains a solid 2.5% for the third month in a row, despite not having done anything much during the polling period. Johnny No Mates would still win outright on these numbers, but not by much, with Lab/Greens holding onto a combined low forties for 3 months now. An election result only 3 points higher, or with NZ First back, would see Phil Goff having a crack at forming a government.

      And here’s Nationals real problem:

      “The Roy Morgan Government Confidence Rating has fallen 11.5 points to 125 with 55% (down 5.5%) of New Zealanders saying New Zealand is ‘heading in the right direction’ compared to 30% (up 6%) that say New Zealand is ‘heading in the wrong direction.’ This is the lowest Roy Morgan Government Confidence Rating since the 2008 New Zealand Election — nearly two years ago.”

  4. Logie97 4

    Guardians of our Foreign policy.

    First John Key speaks for the nation, possessing some electoral authority, but with obviously no notion or knowledge or philosophy of things outside his around-the-barbecue chats with his mates

    But then who follows him? McCully. Who takes this man seriously?
    Weasel with weasel words (bumbling at that). And he is our Foreign Affairs minister? WTF?

  5. Pascal's bookie 5

    Re: a certainm talking point that has been flosting around the place…

    NOT TAX BREAKS

    Media covering the Hobbit fiasco commonly described taxpayer incentives to Hollywood as “tax breaks” or “tax rebates”.

    In fact, the Large Budget Screen Production Grant is a 15 per cent direct rebate on money spent here and not linked to the tax system.

    One film industry source was sceptical about the payback to New Zealand taxpayers from the enlarged production grant available to Warner Bros. Based on the production spend and additional money allocated, the source said Warner might be expected to receive roughly $100 million.

    Estimates on the value of the Hobbit to New Zealand’s economy are difficult to assess. But on the rather generous estimate that the two movies will create the equivalent of 1000 full-time jobs for three years, those jobs would cost New Zealand $100,000 each to subsidise. That figure excludes the economic impact from activity created by the production and the intangible impacts on tourism.

    Source: Granny herald’s ‘the business’ liftout. which they don’t seem to put online, natch

    • lprent 6.1

      Yeah, she labored long and hard to give me babysitting… 😈 The gruncle emerges.

      I’ll go and observe the latest addition this evening… But apparently both are in good knick

    • BLiP 6.2

      Congratulations, Rocky.

      My mum can never understand why she is expected to buy us birthday presents when she was the one that did all the work. It wasn’t until I witnessed a birth that I realised she has got a very good point.

  6. BLiP 7

    I urge everyone to go ahead with a formal complaint to the BSA against TVNZ in relation to the Paul Henry incident.

    I got my unsigned, pro forma, “we’re so sorry” from TVNZ on 18/10/10, but I am unconvinced that the management really get it. They were warned and warned about Henry yet persisted in seeking synergy between lowering standards and maximising profit. If my boss started receiving written complaints from customers, you can bet there would be a dictate to change my behaviour. If I continued on, still getting complaints and then so pissed off the customer base that thousands sent written complaints while tens of thousands set up anti-BLiP Facebook pages – jeeze – never mind the opportunity to resign, I’d be frog marched to the factory gates and booted up the arse on the way out!.

    I am highly dubious about the TVNZ complaint investigation process itself. I don’t believe for a minute that there was any sort of formal Complaint Committee Meeting, more likely, the issue was handed over to the PR department for managing. I wrote two complaints. On day one, I complained about Henry’s racist abuse of the Indian diplomat and, on day two, I complained about his racist abuse of Satch. Yet only one complaint was formally acknowledged, and only one complaint was formally responded to with the “we’re so sorry” email. Further confirming my view the matter was rushed is the fact that I received a separate email addressed to someone I’d never heard of. I did return it but I wonder if intended recipient ever received their “we’re so sorry” fob-off.

    And then there’s the mendacity. The only honesty displayed by TVNZ came from that shocking yet spontaneous comment: “oh, get over yourself, Henry’s only saying what we all think but are too scared to say ourselves”. The idea that the subsequent and supposedly internal follow up to that initial comment was “leaked” is laughable. Meanwhile, TVNZ said they had received “a few hundred”, then “four hundred” complaints – finally acknowledging 1500 hundred complaints – what’s the bet there were actually thousands of complaints and its management-by-minimising PR spin going on? Then there was news that TVNZ was seeking an extension to the 20-days allowed for responding. That story died pretty quick and, just ten days later, as far as TVNZ was concerned, the issue had been dealt with. Overall, I get the feeling they are trying to just make it all go away.

    Nah, not good enough. Not good enough by far. Paul Henry’s enablers have, thus far, escaped both scrutiny and penalty. Just like our Prime Minister, when coming face-to-face with hateful, pig-ignorant blatant racism, TVNZ are attempting the John-Key-Patented “Giggle & Wriggle”™.

    Don’t let them get away with it.

    • Anne 7.1

      Thanks for that info. BLiP. I’m currently waiting on a decision re-my formal complaint (sent in letter form) about Paul Holmes’ disgraceful performance on Q&A, when interviewing Helen Kelly over The Hobbit debacle. Received an acknowledgement – no name given and signature illegible. Backs up your suspicion that the Complaints Committee is a euphemism for the PR department. Whatever, I’m expecting a fob-off, and will consider taking the matter up with the BSA.

      In my view, Holmes’ transgressions are just as bad as Henry’s – albeit in a different format. It’s almost as if both seem to think their friendship with John Key gives them licence to say what they like to whomsoever they like.

  7. freedom 8

    Smile and D’oh goes on about closing the gap, but with plans like this across the ditch, i would rather the gap remained please, in fact can we maybe widen it a bit?

    • Draco T Bastard 8.1

      In a resource constrained world, which is what we live in, there happen to be limits. We can’t continue to live outside those limits the way we presently do. That article is just trying to say that we can because of “human nature”.

      • freedom 8.1.1

        of course there are limits which is why sustainable solutions are being presented left right and center but the powers that be are not interested and prefer to push the GM single generation seeds and have the worst industrial polluters excused from any sort of sustainability programmes so the free market can continue to exploit the last vestige of the precious dwindling resources.

        also Draco, your comment above makes no sense, please explain
        –how is the article saying we can live outside of Earth’s limited resources because of ‘human nature’ ???–

        • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1.1

          Because the article focuses on a hypothetical fat family that spends more than it has. The argument being that they spend more than they have because of human nature.

          But it’s the humans who must then adapt to the system, and not the other way around.

          He doesn’t use the words but it’s what he’s saying. The reality is that humans have adapt to the Earth’s limits. We’ve managed not to do so far but that is coming to an end as Peak Oil hits. There are 6.7b people on the world and yet it’s natural carrying capacity seems to be between 500m and 1000m.

          Me: No, but they’ve done the wrong thing. That’s why they are fat and poor. They’ve done the wrong thing, they’ve run out of their carbon credits. What are you going to do to them then, when the food’s too expensive to buy?

          Interestingly enough here he seems to be arguing that unhealthy foods shouldn’t be priced off the market which is actually what the scheme would do. Set the limits and then you can have what’s on the market within those limits.

  8. joe90 9

    George W. Bush’s soon-to-be-released memoir reveals that he personally approved the use of waterboarding. Prick.

    In his book, titled “Decision Points,” Bush recounts being asked by the CIA whether it could proceed with waterboarding Mohammed, who Bush said was suspected of knowing about still-pending terrorist plots against the United States. Bush writes that his reply was “Damn right” and states that he would make the same decision again to save lives, according to a someone close to Bush who has read the book.

    Bush previously had acknowledged endorsing what he described as the CIA’s “enhanced” interrogation techniques – a term meant to encompass irregular, coercive methods – after Justice Department officials and other top aides assured him they were legal. “I was a big supporter of waterboarding,” Vice President Richard B. Cheney acknowledged in a television interview in February.

    The Justice Department later repudiated some of the underlying legal analysis for the CIA effort. But Bush told an interviewer a week before leaving the White House that “I firmly reject the word ‘torture,’ ” and he reiterates that view in the book.

  9. For those who might need a virtual mini-break, I offer

    http://mars2earth.blogspot.com/2010/11/surfing-video-get-ready-for-summer.html

    ahhhh – it’s great to remember good times to come

  10. Carol 11

    eday is a great idea. Nick Smith is saying tomorrow’s eday might be the last one before user pays sets in, so take the opportunity for free delivery of stuff to the eday centres. But eday this and last year is always on a Saturday during my working hours. Why do they assume no-one works on Saturdays?

  11. Blue Boy 12

    John Key must be doing something right I see we jumped to No 3 in the world for best places to live from No 20 last year.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/4311445/New-Zealand-one-of-top-three-places-to-live-report

    • Rosy 12.1

      You missed this bit…

      ” But the report’s lead author Jeni Klugram warned not to compare the latest index to previous years because different indicators and calculations have been used.

      The 2010 index charts national ranking changes over five-year intervals, rather than on a year-to-year basis.

      “Annual changes in national HDI rankings don’t tell us much about the reality of development, which is inherently a long-term process,” she said”.

    • ianmac 12.2

      Might be that other countries have deteriorated?

  12. john 13

    Report from Australia’s Green Left: Summer North Pole Arctic Ice has been successfully circumnavigated in a 4 month time span! This is a first and illustrates how the area continues to melt back due to climate change: Refer link:

    http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/45871

    “The crew of one of the ships, the Norwegian-based Northern Passage, said in an October 14 statement that the record-breaking voyage gave “a clear indication that climate change affects the Arctic”. ”
    “100 years ago, a circumnavigation [of the North Pole] would have taken six years.””

    • Bored 13.1

      Thats really significant news John, pity that most of us blogges are more focused on local political minutae and we miss the life and death issues. Or maybe its so big and brutal it gets overlooked as too difficult to comprehend, therefore best left well alone. Either way its going to get us.

  13. Croc 14

    Wow. According to John Key, Hillary is the President. Perhaps the reason he thought he has such close relations with the President?

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Hillary-Clinton-full-press-conference/tabid/309/articleID/184764/Default.aspx

  14. joe90 15

    Well, that didn’t take long, 87 year old Ralph Hall has been appointed to lead the science panel as the Republicans plan to attack the EPA and climate scientists.

    And surprise surprise, donations to Hall.

    btw, It would be nice to know where our lot get their money from too. Here’s a suggestion.

  15. Pascal's bookie 16

    Here’s an interesting graphic:

    A forbes mag jobby of who their billionaires donate to. On the conservative side one of the big bubbles is “american crossroads” which lists as ‘non partisan’. It’s a Karl Rove laundry, as it happens.

  16. Draco T Bastard 17

    NRT: National’s plan for growth: More cows

    So, National’s plan for growth is to do the same thing we’ve always done, only more of it and dirtier. Its exactly the sort of plan I’d expect from narrow-minded, jealous farmers. But it won’t see us catch Australia anytime soon. On their core promise, National has no real plan to deliver.

    It will see our tourism industry destroyed though and we can certainly kiss “Clean & Green” goodbye. No way it’s sustainable either – not with oil demand about to increase far beyond oil supply and the environmental destruction that goes with that much dairying.

    /shrug

    It appears that National are still living in the 19th century.

  17. Pascal's bookie 18

    Here’s the thing see, and like the man sez, not wanting to get on the self hating white man thing, but shit…

    http://www.balloon-juice.com/2010/11/04/stuff-white-people-like/

    if the US electorate voted like white people vote…

  18. Logie97 19

    The Kahui tragedy trundles on and the integrity of any evidence that was given in the initial trials appears to be becoming lessened with each day.

    Time has clouded the memories but around the time of what was being orchestrated as a spate of infant tragedies, didn’t MPs step into one of them to try to mediate. The police were kept at arms length for an initial period while the MPs did their best to sort things.

  19. Draco T Bastard 20

    oil: US$87
    exchange rate: NZ$1= US$0.794

    Looks like the US’s Magic Printing Press is working overtime.

  20. Vicky32 21

    I was just listening to an item on Clive about sunscreens, when the phrase “are more relaxed” sprang out at me.
    It’s entered the TV reporter lexicon then…

    • ianmac 21.1

      I have started watching Campbell Live again. He has said that the program should have more stronger interviews, and there have been some recently. Looking up do you think?

  21. Anne 22

    Prefer Campbell Live to Close-Up, but watched the Hillary Clinton interview tonight. What an articulate and consummate professional. She puts our ‘mumble -bumble’ PM to shame! Does her homework too. Very impressive.

  22. Draco T Bastard 23

    The End of Free-Trade Globalization

    Obama repeated the message before a Labor Day audience in Milwaukee, saying, “I don’t want to see solar panels and wind turbines and electric cars made in China. I want them made right here in the United States of America.”

    Our government needs to be saying the same thing but, as I’ve pointed out before, modern productivity is so high that any country can produce more than what it needs which means that if every country does so then the entire world will be massively over supplied goods.

    We, and every other country as well, cannot export our way to wealth any more. It won’t work due to massive over supply and, more importantly, it also won’t work to resource constraints. Instead of growing the economy we need to shrink it until it fits within the renewable resource base.

    • Colonial Viper 23.1

      We, and every other country as well, cannot export our way to wealth any more. It won’t work due to massive over supply and, more importantly, it also won’t work to resource constraints. Instead of growing the economy we need to shrink it until it fits within the renewable resource base.

      Its late so I won’t discuss your points in detail, save to say that they are important and eventually we will have to transition in the direction you suggest. HOWEVER exports are today a key part of our economy and high value high tech exports must be an even more important of our economy in the near future (10 years).

      NZ will not be going back to a self sufficiency subsistency based agrarian economy any time soon. Our social fabric, our expectations of lifestyle and in general, our individual psyches, are not prepared for it.

      Plus, there are serious real economy problems associated with the transitions you suggest.

      You want to shrink the economy? When you do that, how are you going to stop an additional 100,000 or 200,000 NZ’ers joining the dole queues? And if you cannot stop them joining the dole queues, how is the Government going to fund those benefits? And the loss of internal aggregate demand from our economy? I am not saying that these are unsurmountable problems, but I am saying that I cannot – at this stage – see a way that it can be done without a huge social dislocation akin to the ‘cultural revolution’.

      All in all, my view is that if we want to fund the social services and civil infrastructure that we think our people deserve, we will need to focus as a country on the real economy, and how to grow it in a sustainable and responsible manner, so that we can generate the high paying and interesting jobs that we would like to see available to every member of the NZ workforce.

      • Draco T Bastard 23.1.1

        NZ will not be going back to a self sufficiency subsistency based agrarian economy any time soon.

        Where did I say to go back to an agrarian model? If fact I’ve been quite vocal about building up high tech industries.

        You want to shrink the economy?

        Yes, down to the point that we only produce what we need within the constraints of the renewable resource base. We really can’t have a sustainable economy if it uses more than that.

        When you do that, how are you going to stop an additional 100,000 or 200,000 NZ’ers joining the dole queues?

        You’re still working with the false assumption that people have to work 40+ hours/week. Modern productivity is so high that we could probably have people working 10 or 20 hours per week and still maintain the lifestyle that we have today.

        we will need to focus as a country on the real economy, and how to grow it in a sustainable and responsible manner,

        We can’t grow it at all – we’re already using more of the environment than is sustainable. We have to develop it and change it to suit our needs which means more R&D, more high tech and decreasing the number of farms.

    • M 23.2

      ‘The best adaption is to play it as it lays, while practicing the virtues that have always stood people in good stead in weird times, such as frugality and cooperation, while cultivating extreme flexibility. It might be a good time to hone your gardening skills and it is surely a good idea to downscale your lifestyle in order to save money and acclimate yourself to a low-energy lifestyle, but you might have to hold on to your car for a little while longer if your job is located 20 miles from a bus line, and you might not have the physical strength and stamina to farm. It is surely no time for anyone with a solid job and minimal savings to head for the hills. It might not exactly make sense to ignore the skills you need to make a decent living now in order to learn old skills for which there is not yet a need.’

      http://kunstler.com/blog/2010/10/now-what.html

  23. M 24

    Maybe get down to a three or four day week or a five or six hour day which for a lot of people would take some getting used to, although as economies around the globe totter and fall and big ag also stumbles people will be glad of the extra time to tend home gardens.

    Eventually the bs economic classlessness that has been imprinted in the public’s mind will be seen by the public for what it is – a sham used to ram through a set of conditions or thinly disguised cons to ensnare the working class. When the workers beliefs inculcated by the top dogs don’t pan out then the workers feel guilty for being useless or whatever the flavour of the week excuse is promoted by vested interests.

    • Colonial Viper 24.1

      The issue is that a lot of NZ households today cannot survive on less than two incomes. We are already a low income economy.

      Without having two incomes i.e. up to 10 days worth of paid work done per week per household, the household will not manage to get the $50K or $60K income p.a. that they need to survive.

      You cut that10 days worth of paid work back to 8 days: that $60K p.a. household income falls to $48K p.a.

      That’s a $1000 per month before tax budgetary shortfall. A lot of families and a lot of home mortgage holders will find it difficult to survive that change. We have all been put on the treadmill.

      • Draco T Bastard 24.1.1

        Universal Income & the Minimum Wage

        One of the main reasons why I’m supportive of the universal income is that it makes it very clear that the economy needs to support everyone in the country. We could cut the hours people work and know that they wouldn’t be dumped into poverty.

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    South African coach Rassie Erasmus says he has no idea what they’re going to do about the boat. In a highly anticipated press conference this afternoon, All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has finally unveiled the team’s boat for its Rugby World Cup 2019 campaign. In a press conference that went ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 days ago
  • An increasingly shoddy coverup
    The Operation Burnham inquiry continued to question senior NZDF staff today, and their shoddy coverup over their knowledge of civilian casualties continue to fall apart. If you recall, first, we were asked to believe that it was all a series of "mistakes and errors": a senior officer with multiple degrees ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • If we are to avoid making the earth uninhabitable, we need to rapidly decarbonise our civilisation, and cut emissions to zero as quickly as possible. This seems like an impossible task, but its not. Pushing hard on a few technologies and trends will let us halve emissions in a decade:Greenhouse ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A further attack on transparency
    The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) had part of its committee stage yesterday. its a generally tedious bill about the nitty-gritty of local government reorganisation. But it includes a clause making the Local Government Commission subject to the Ombudsmen Act, and hence the OIA. Great! Except of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Ihumātao and Treaty settlements
    Yesterday Ihumātao's mana whenua reached a consensus that they would like their land back, and asked the government to negotiate with Fletcher's for its return. The government's response? Try and undermine that consensus, while talking about how doing anything would undermine existing Treaty settlements. The first is just more bad ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Protecting our history
    Its Suffrage Day, the 126th anniversary of women winning the right to vote (but not stand in elections) in New Zealand. And to celebrate, the government has bought Kate Sheppard's house in Christchurch:The government has bought Kate Sheppard's former home in Christchurch for more than $4 million. The Ilam villa ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Ostracising the coal-burners
    The UN climate summit is happening in new York next week, and unlike previous years, coal-burners and denier-states are not being invited to speak:Leading economies such as Japan and Australia will not be invited to speak at next week’s crunch UN climate change summit, as their continued support for coal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Jojo Tamihere Salutes Herr Goff.
    Get Back Jojo! The elation in Mayor Phil Goff’s camp may be easily imagined as they watched social media light up in indignation at challenger John Tamihere’s "Sieg Heil to that" quip. Just when JT’s notoriously right-wing, sexist and homophobic stains were beginning to fade back into his ‘colourful’ past, ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    3 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    3 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    3 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    5 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    5 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    5 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    6 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

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