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Open Mike 06/09/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 6th, 2016 - 63 comments
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63 comments on “Open Mike 06/09/2016 ”

  1. Paul 1

    I see the Nats are starting another smear campaign against Winston Peters.

    And that RNZ are cheerleading for Key’s gang.
    If Guyon Espiner’s puerile interview of Peters yesterday is anything to go by, today’s interview at 7.25 a.m. will be dreadful.


    • The lost sheep 1.1

      Just last week you were saying we should ‘switch off the mainstream news.’ ‘there are good alternatives’ and ‘We can bypass these corporate puppets.’

      And here you are just days later rushing to wallow in the MSM as soon as you get out of bed. Admit it Paul. You’re addicted. Those corporate puppets have you by the balls.

      • Gangnam Style 1.1.1

        Has Paul got you ‘by the balls’ Lost Sheep? You seem addicted to reading & replying to his comments.

    • Rodel 1.2

      It was also obvious last night in Gower’s obsessive hatred of Peters.He wouldn’t have the courage to speak of the PM that way.
      Watch for surge of petty ‘gotcha journalism’ over the next months.
      Little forcefully refuted and countered this kind of rubbish in an interview on RNZ this morning.

  2. Pat 2


    “Those wondering how it feels to see one’s country subordinated to foreign interests should probably consult a Maori.”

    you can usually rely on Mr Trotter to find a historical parallel….

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      It’s pretty much all happened before and always has the same end result. We just forget about it and the capitalists tell us that we need to sell more to them so as to make us wealthier which is a lie. If society sells everything to the capitalists then we’ll be poor as we won’t have anything at all but we will be dependent upon the capitalists who will then get to dictate what we do, when we do it and even if we get to live.

      Where seeing this already in increasing poverty and homelessness while the 1% get ever so much richer.

      • Pat 2.1.1

        it always astounds how a supposedly intelligent species appears stuck in a repetitive loop of failed behaviour…..although probably not for much longer.

        • Draco T Bastard

          We forget and a large part of that is because capitalism isn’t attached the collapse of Ancient Rome, Greece, Egypt and the South American civilisations as well as the driving forces of the revolutions against feudalism. If we were taught that then there’s no way that the capitalists and their stooges would be able to tell us that capitalism is the only way. We’d know that it was a lie.

          • TheExtremist

            Errrr the South American, Ancient Rome, Greece, Egypt societies collapsed because of capitalism?

            You might want to check up on that, dude

            • Draco T Bastard

              Top down hierarchy, private ownership, for profit and over use of resources. Ancient Sumer even used debt based paper money.

              Sounds just like capitalism to me.

              • TheExtremist

                I have studied a wealth of history and nary once has capitalism been raised as the reasons for the decline of these ancient societies – at least not by any of the leading academic works on the topic. Most, if not all, were brought down by religious war, famine/disease or environmental factors.

                Now I expect you’ll link to “debt: the first 5000 years” again.

                • Halfcrown

                  I find your comment interesting. Remind me, as you have studied a wealth of history, are you trying to tell us that Cortez (the first one that easily comes to mind) who pillaged central America and shipped back to Spain shitloads of Aztec pillage wealth was not some form of capitalist. Did the Aztec civilisation survive after the intervention of Cortez and the conquistadors?

                  • TheExtremist66

                    It’s far more nuanced than “capitalism”. Religion played a part of course as well as the need to conquer new lands in the name of a country before other such nations did as well as securing a new resource source while proclaiming cultural superiority. Also The Maya, for example, collapsed after famine and disease rather than capitalism. Saying capitalism is to blame ignores a range of historical anachronistic reasons

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      It’s far more nuanced than “capitalism”.

                      Things are always more nuanced that a single word but we can and should point to the commonalities.

                    • Halfcrown

                      I think your answer confirms what DTB has been saying.

                      “Religion played a part of course as well as the need to conquer new lands in the name of a country before other such nations did as well as securing a new resource source while proclaiming cultural superiority.”

                      Well isn’t that capitalism working?

                      I cannot see any difference between Cortez, or Milner & Rhodes who caused the Boer War to gain control of the Rand gold. Blair and Bush with weapons of mass destruction to get the Iraq oil or the capitalist’s who put up the capital so the East Indian Company could exploit the wealth of India. or the London Bankers who financed the Virginian Company to the New World, and established the Virginian Colony with a settlement at James Town. They were all speculative capitalist invasions and the locals suffered for it. The Virginian Company certainly did not go there to improve the lot of the local red Indians.
                      I also have read a lot of history and the vibes, I get any so called “expeditions” are financed by speculators to gain a capital return. If that is not capitalism I don’t know what is
                      DTB suggested you read Piketty I also suggest reading Pakenham’s Scramble for Africa and tell me if capitalism was not the driving force.
                      None of us knows why the Mayan civilisation disappeared. However, after reading what is suspected of what happened to the advanced civilisation on Easter Island I would not be surprised if that had also been the fate of the Mayan culture.
                      Easter Island, a world that is coming soon near to you and the whole world if capitalism continues unabated without any controls.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Most, if not all, were brought down by religious war, famine/disease or environmental factors.

                  A lot of which were based around capitalistic like actions. Some famine was caused by over farming where the farmer ‘owned’ the land and the slaves that worked it. And even religious war has had capitalistic underpinnings.

                  Then there’s the actions of the rich in all cases:

                  These factors can lead to collapse when they converge to generate two crucial social features: “the stretching of resources due to the strain placed on the ecological carrying capacity”; and “the economic stratification of society into Elites [rich] and Masses (or “Commoners”) [poor]” These social phenomena have played “a central role in the character or in the process of the collapse,” in all such cases over “the last five thousand years.”

                  And you should probably read Piketty as well.

                  The rich only exist in capitalistic societies and those societies have always collapsed.

                  • TheExtremist66

                    That’s because you are defining capitalist societies as societies with rich people. Which is incorrect. Also the Mayan (and other post Neolithic societies) destroyed their environments not because of land ownership but because the only way they could advance was by using the environment they had at hand.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      That’s because you are defining capitalist societies as societies with rich people.

                      No I’m not. I’m defining it as a top down hierarchical system with the power concentrated in the hands of a few.

                      Having rich people is an inevitable result of that system but is not a prerequisite for it.

                      Also the Mayan (and other post Neolithic societies) destroyed their environments not because of land ownership but because the only way they could advance was by using the environment they had at hand.

                      Oh, you mean like the way that the capitalists keep telling us that we can’t protect the environment because it would damage the economy?

                    • TheExtremist

                      “I’m defining it as a top down hierarchical system with the power concentrated in the hands of a few”

                      You know how all ducks are birds but not all birds are ducks? Same applies here.

                      “you mean like the way that the capitalists keep telling us that we can’t protect the environment because it would damage the economy?”

                      Comparing the decline of the Maya in a historical sense with modern capitalism is stupid and you should feel stupid for even suggesting such a dumb idea.

  3. Draco T Bastard 3

    Bernard Hickey on our debt fuelled housing binge.

    Such bubbles have always ended in sorrow and this can’t end any other way. It’s the inevitable result of the monetary system not being connected to reality.

  4. Pat 4


    ‘The ocean has absorbed more than 90% of the extra heat created by human activity. If the same amount of heat that has been buried in the upper 2km of the ocean had gone into the atmosphere, the surface of the Earth would have warmed by a devastating 36C, rather than 1C, over the past century.”


  5. Bearded Git 5

    Get the popcorn out…Dirty Politics meets weird Colin.


    • Gabby 5.1

      Hopefully it’s costing both parties shitloads.

      • Bearded Git 5.1.1

        I’m sure it is…shame…terrible shame.

        • James

          Bound to be cost awarded to the winner.

          • Rodel

            We need this. (Colin vs Jordan show)-Why should the USA have all the fun?

            • Halfcrown

              Yeah great Aye, better than watching that crap called the Hobbit.

              I hope they make it into a TV soap. Also, agree with Bearded “Get the popcorn out”

          • Bearded Git

            Here are some verbatim extracts from “Dirty Politics” concerning Jordan Williams, to show what a lovely man he is (courtesy of Nicky Hager):

            “The Jordan who was trying to get a copy of Hide’s texts for Lusk and Slater was a young lawyer named Jordan Williams. He was headed for a prominent role in the Slater–Lusk–Farrar attack politics, acting as an apprentice to Lusk and Slater, including anonymous writing for the Whale Oil blog, and as a close collaborator of David Farrar, regularly working, socialising and holidaying with him.”

            “Williams had grown up in Hawke’s Bay and got to know Lusk while he was a student and National Party volunteer. He wrote to Don Brash, a family friend, when he was living in a Victoria University hostel, offering to help in National’s 2005 election campaign. Later, it was Williams who escorted Brash in public during the days of his ACT Party leadership bid. Lusk, Slater and Farrar used him repeatedly in their schemes ……”

            “When Peter Dunne was in trouble for leaking to a journalist in June 2013, Jordan Williams wrote to Slater saying, ‘Hey, you know an easy way to push dunne out? get him to stand for Wellington mayor, have the conversation with him.’ Slater said, ‘I know a much easier way.’ If they wanted Dunne out of Parliament, they could ‘release details of his donations (undeclared) that he received personally from tobacco companies’.”

            “Farrar’s most recent political campaign was an initiative called the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union (NZTU), launched in October 2013. Like the blogs that ‘need not be associated (in name) with your party or campaign’, the NZTU is an example of a supposedly independent organisation designed to back up the work of a political party. Its launch press release described it as a ‘politically independent grassroots campaign’, but it is no more politically independent than the election finance and anti-MMP campaigns. In fact, it was like a rerun of the anti-MMP campaign, with Jordan Williams once again as frontperson and Farrar as founder and main strategist.”

            “The partisan nature of the NZTU and its direct involvement in attack politics was summed up by its assistance during Slater’s campaign against the Labour mayor of Auckland, Len Brown. Slater tackled Brown about his affair… but the NZTU was used to help carry on the attacks. An information request to the Auckland City Council made while researching this book asked how many requests for information they had received concerning Brown ….there had been a total of 18 requests from eight news organisations, but 14 from the NZTU and Jordan Williams alone, as they repeatedly dug for any spending by the mayor that they could publicise to add fuel to the sex scandal.”

            “The most frequent sex-related attacks that Slater tried to organise were against Labour Party MPs. In 2012, for instance, Slater was angry at a Labour MP for suggesting in Parliament that he had helped Judith Collins to leak the controversial Pullar ACC e-mail. Jordan Williams suggested they arrange an attack on him. ‘What’s the plan tomorrow,’ he asked, ‘are you going after [the MP]? Surely he has rooted enough women around parliament to get the hit on.’ Slater replied, ‘Fuck yeah, it will be spectacular. Start digging dirt on the c**t and feed it to Simon.”

            • Muttonbird

              Williams has tied himself up with Craig’s muse good and proper. There’s a real battle on amongst the far right people.

              Farrar can’t help getting involved in this one as it is about women and getting in between their legs. This is too much for Farrar who has a predilection for this sort of thing.

  6. mary_a 6

    I wish Nikki Kaye a positive outcome, as she begins the journey of receiving treatment for breast cancer.

    All the very best Nikki.

  7. mary_a 7

    Is it just me, or are other people having difficulty opening TS? Same when finally getting into the site, with blogs.

    • BobInAkl 7.1

      The problems seem to be ongoing, has been pretty hit and miss over the last few days, guess it will get sorted at some stage.

    • Rodel 7.2

      Me too. ..Patience…. patience

      • Pasupial 7.2.1

        I saw a comment the other day from LPrent saying that he was out of Auckland at the moment so can’t get directly to the hardware (remote fixing obviously isn’t doing the trick).

        The site being a glitchy mess at the moment does draw attention to how good it is usually though!

        • lprent

          Looks like some new spiders scanning the site. Fixing them now.

          • lprent

            Nope that wasn’t it. It turned out to be my local caching of gravatars with a new plugin. The old one didn’t survive the change to php7. Looks like I should have a look at that plugins code under load. I suspect that it is doing something pretty daft.

            Reverted to getting teh gravatars from gravtar. This has two issues. Firstly gravatar has a really annoying 5 minutes on the caching time to live – which is a pain for several reasons including a lower page speed ranking. Secondly, it slows the page loads because it means more sockets in use under http2.

  8. ianmac 8

    Oh the irony!
    “Taxpayers’ Union executive director Jordan Williams launched civil proceedings after Craig allegedly defamed him last year at a press conference, and again in a leaflet sent to more than 1.6 million households.”

  9. The Chairman 9

    Unfairly treated workers still waiting for payouts, ERA powerless


    Isn’t it time the ERA is given more teeth?

  10. The Chairman 10

    Palmerston North dairy owners are concerned a sugar tax could lead to increased shoplifting and robberies after their experience with cigarette tax increases.

    The debate is back in the spotlight after Labour health spokeswoman Annette King told media there was growing support in the health sector for a sugary drink tax.

    While Labour’s position had previously been that there was not enough evidence to support such a tax, no final decision had been made.

    Albert St Dairy owner Dakshina Keshav said she hadn’t had any fewer customers buying cigarettes since a more aggressive tobacco tax was introduced in 2013.


    University of Auckland researchers say plain packaging and warning labels on sugary drinks could help prevent childhood obesity.

    The study found that a tax of 20 per cent on sugary beverages had only a weak effect on young people’s preferences.

    The Greens want a tax.

    The centre-piece of the Government’s new childhood obesity plan is to have 95 per cent of children identified as obese in the Before School Check of 4-year-olds to be referred to a health practitioner.



    • McFlock 10.1

      I think it looks a lot like you’ll put these comments under a “social media focus group” line item on your charge-out costs.

      • The Chairman 10.1.1

        Your thinking is incorrect. Moreover, I’m not the subject matter. Care to comment on the topic?

        • McFlock

          It’s open mike. You don’t get to dictate what other people comment on.

          Besides, why would I bother thinking about a topic upon which you can’t be bothered to express an opinion?

          • The Chairman


            Far from it.

            I merely highlighted I wasn’t the subject matter (of the discussion you replied too) and asked if you cared to comment on the topic you were replying too.

            The question you should ask yourself is why did you bother replying to a topic which didn’t express a personal opinion?

            • McFlock

              Because while the topic within the comment didn’t interest me, the comment itself struck me as being an odd digression from the usual form on this site.

              As I said, it reads more like someone doing ad hoc policy/marketing research or wanting ideas on how to approach a homework assignment than it reads like someone actually wanting to discuss the issue.

              Many people throw something up as a link because it might be of interest, and leave it at that beyond a quick summary of the link contents. Many other people might not even put up a link, but give their opinions on an issue. Either format can spontaneously form into a discussion.

              I don’t get why you want the discussion without having at least a rough opinion on the issue. The only people that come to mind who want reactions that are affected as little as possible by their own behaviour are psychology researchers or marketing focus group coordinators.

              • The Chairman

                I see. You want to make me and my form of posting the topic.

                • McFlock

                  No. One topic is whatever you’ve decided you want to take advice on. Another topic is why you choose to be an intellectual leech rather than starting an actual discussion.

                  We all discuss the topics we choose to discuss. Except for you, who simply selects the topic and expects to observe the discussion before committing to it himself.

              • I support McFlock here. “Thoughts” is discordant and doesn’t encourage engagement. Why do you continue to use it, Chairman? No one has expressed support for its use. Why not try another approach? You can’t do worse than you’ve already done.

    • Bearded Git 10.2

      Oh yeah, right, a black market in gummy bears.

      If a sugar tax is a good idea, which it is IMHO, some minor and unlikely side-effects have to be accepted.

      I think Key and friends are blaming the out-of-control dairy burglaries on the rise in cigarette taxes rather than the reality which is they have lost control of burglaries after major cuts to the police budget.

      • The Chairman 10.2.1

        “I think Key and friends are blaming the out-of-control dairy burglaries on the rise in cigarette taxes…”

        Are you including the police and dairy owners in that assertion?

        Moreover, you are aware National supported continuing on with tobacco tax increases? Therefore, it’s far from the ideal scapegoat.

    • The Chairman 10.3

      For those who are interested, back to the subject matter.

      What would you like to see Labour do?

      Should they align with the Greens on this and campaign on a tax?

      Or hold off, advocate for plain packaging and warning labels and see what impact they have?


      [I’ve got a thought. This is a site for the expression of opinions. So, to borrow from Pulp Fiction, say thoughts again, I dare you … TRP]

  11. Leftie 11

    For the past 5 years Immigration NZ have been actively soliciting immigrants and lying about “abundance” of job opportunities in New Zealand.

    <a href="https://www.youtube.com/user/ImmigrationNZ/videos

  12. Muttonbird 12

    A brutal assessment of Dr. Smith by Paddy Gower.

    I won’t muck around here, because New Zealanders aren’t thick – there’s no real need for political analysis.


    Indeed, the numbers speak for themselves, Dr. Smith.

  13. joe90 13

    And then the dogs came.

    Sometimes, you wake in 2016, but it feels like 1875 because Natives are still fighting for our land. pic.twitter.com/mEN4G4yvgs— Sherman Alexie (@Sherman_Alexie) August 24, 2016

    That afternoon, the Crow Nation marched into camp in war bonnets, waving flags, singing and whooping, bearing a peace pipe and a load of buffalo meat, offering the first real reconciliation since 1876, when Crows were scouts for Custer at Little Bighorn, where the U.S Cavalry got its ever-loving ass kicked by the Lakota. At last count, representatives from more than 120 tribal nations had arrived from as far as Hawaii, Maine, California, and Mississippi.


    • Gangnam Style 13.1

      The ODT editorial today talked about homelessness in NZ, used some article from before 1890 to prove that it has always been here & anyway teachers hate National & John Key is super awesome, so there!

      • Pat 13.1.1

        did they neglect to add that in the intervening decades a number of governments in NZ embarked on a state housing programme to solve the ever present problem?

  14. smilin 14

    Got this one today
    Where do you think all the money for the NZ million dollar average is coming from ?
    Remember a place called Hong Kong ?
    That to the wise should make all the pieces fall into place
    Hope some one smarter has the guts to expand on this

  15. North 15


    Good on them though. I guess they’re buzzed being the ‘New Black’, the extraordinarily pocked ‘Face of Wank’. Nice relief from Mex Key whom obviously Crosby Textor have told to zip his insolent androgenous lips. “Napping on Air Force One” FFS !


  16. Murray Simmonds 16

    Here’s a very readable and useful posting on “Zero Hedge” just now:


    To quote a bit (as clickbait; but of course from the perspective of the USA):

    “When you have got about half a trillion dollars more going out than you have coming in year after year that has severe consequences.
    Let me try to break it down very simply.
    Imagine that I am the United States and you are China. I take one dollar out of my wallet and I give it to you and then you send me some stuff.
    After a while, I want more stuff, so I take another dollar out of my wallet and send it to you in exchange for more products.
    But that stuff only lasts for so long, and so pretty soon I find myself taking another dollar out of my wallet and giving it to you for even more stuff.
    Ultimately, who is going to end up with all the money?
    It isn’t a big mystery as to how China ended up with so much money.”

    And a couple of perceptive comments:
    “in the long run China relatively has all the money”
    No, China will have a lot of inflated US paper$, they will not be able to sell it, otherwise they drive down the value of the paper even more.

    “America has become a blood sucking leech that lives on the rest of the world through the reserve dollar.”

    “Marx loosely called it the rentier class. Unfortunately, it doesn’t include the vast majority of Americans. American oligarchs/bankers have become a blood sucking leech that live on the rest of the world through the reserve dollar.”

    OK, thats 3 comments – I can’t count.
    A really clear exposition of what’s wrong with the current economic state of affairs, and a GREAT summary, by the way, of whats wrong with “Free” Trade and “Globalisation.”

    While written from the perspective of the USA, NZ is no exception to the points made in this excellent article.

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