Open mike 06/11/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 6th, 2015 - 86 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmikeOpen 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 …

86 comments on “Open mike 06/11/2015”

  1. RedLogix 1

    George HW Bush has a new autobiography confirming what many already knew – that Rumsfield and Cheney were very dangerous and damaging characters indeed.

    Especially during that awful first term in the aftermath of 9/11.

  2. Ad 2

    I am hearing a lot of beltway discussion about the future of Kiwirail.

    It appears to still have no future path to profitability, after billions worth of taxpayer dollars put into it.

    Helpfully NZTA doesn’t have to evaluate its motorway systems as a commercial operation to be continuously evaluated as value for money.

    Does anyone have any idea what the:

    (a) Green Party Kiwirail policy is

    (b) Labour Party Kiwirail policy is

    (c) NZFirst Kiwirail policy is

    I am also hearing and seeing on the ground a lot more non-structural cooperation between NZTA and Kiwirail.

    But even if Kiwirail and NZTA were merged, the rail system would still have an operation to run, whose profits from freight don’t generate enough to support the assets.

    Anyone got any intel?

    • Chooky 2.1

      ask Goldman Sachs…they are advising Treasury…and they have an interest in privatising national transport utilities

      • Puckish Rogue 2.1.1

        Ask Labour, you know sell it cheaply then buy it back at a more expensive price

        • savenz

          @Puckish Rogue vs the Natz sell it cheaply to mates and then make taxpayers provide corporate welfare to keep the profits up.

          • Puckish Rogue

            Well if we’re going down that route then its still a lot better then Labours sell completely 100% of of whatever it is they want and leave NZ with nothing

            Fay and Richwhite send their regards

            • McFlock

              Yes, in that regard at least key’s govt is less shitty than the 4th Labour government.

              But if “being less shitty than lab4” is the government’s goal, they might want to find a goal that actually involves good governance.

        • Crashcaart

          Wow normally a lie isn’t so hard to refute but here you go.

          NZ Rail was sold in 1993

          By the then National Governement

          So National sell it cheap. The private owners run it into the ground and the Labour government buys it back before it is completely destroyed. National government proceed to run it into the ground again.

          • Draco T Bastard


            • Rodel

              Amazes me how National party supporters think they can lie and expect people to believe them.
              But what really amazes is how gullible people can be, actually accept what Tories say… gulp –and then vote for them.
              I guess Blair and Bush got away with it. Why should we be any different?

          • John Shears

            @ Crashcart
            Your first link “NZ Rail sold 1993” leaves out the fact that TOLL Holdings got out of the deal after they had run down the rail system but when the Govt of the day bought it back for $658? Million they kept the delivery service which had been buiit up by NZ Rail over many years and they (Toll) still operate in Auckland at least. So Tranzrail can not offer a door to door service as they used to be able to, at least not under their own direct control.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Fairly pathetic attempt at distraction from the truths there:

              FACT: National sold rail
              FACT: Private enterprise then ran it down for profit
              FACT: Government had to buy rail back because of it’s centrality to transportation into the future causing more profit to the private enterprise that ran it down
              FACT: National still running down rail for the profit of the trucking firms against the will and benefit of NZ

        • Ad

          Got any actual facts on Kiwirail’s future?

          • John Shears

            @AD No not really but I can say that Toll has been bought by Japan Post Co. Ltd.on 25.5.2015 .

            Perhaps we should sell Tranzrail to them also that might suit the present Government who are a little short on funds.

            Poor joke see DTB comment below I agree 100%

        • Draco T Bastard

          The fact that it was sold in the first place was a result of the ideology that you follow. None of our assets should ever have been sold and they should have been kept as monopolies as that’s the most efficient form for them. This is, in fact, one of the reasons why they were set up as monopolies in the first place.

          Competition simply doesn’t work with natural monopolies and that means that they must be state owned and operated as services at cost.

          List of natural monopolies:

          * Water
          * Power
          * Health
          * Telecommunications
          * Food
          * Transport

          • tc

            Agreed and the first 2 immediately targeted by NACT once they BS’d their way into govt and they’re been doing health/education via stealth/charter schools.

            Rebstocks rubber stamped commcomm efforts greatly concentrated food and transport in fewer hands as well as building supplies.

          • Naturesong


            Please explain.

            • tc

              Supermarket duopoly, an appalling decision for the consumer, which impacts other areas like alcohol as they dominate wine and beer market share.

              The mill was just acquired by one of them to consolidate further

              • It might just be a matter of preference, but:

                For a robust centralised power grid? – monopoly, check. Superkeen.

                For the growing or distribution of food?
                Regulation, not monopoly is required so when you buy a loaf of bread you can be reasonably assured that the baker did not put a stone in it to make it feel heavier.
                So the production of food in NZ doesn’t strip our oceans (like we are currently) or pollute our waterways, wetlands and beaches (like we are currently)
                And to punish with prejudice cartel behaviour.

            • Draco T Bastard

              I look at food as a demand monopoly – everybody needs it for their well being. Leaving it to the market has left a lot of our population with not getting enough food despite NZ producing enough food for ~20m and while the farmers sell offshore.

              So, we have Landcare buy up enough farmland to feed all of NZ and that food is then distributed at cost. This would ensure that all of NZ is actually well fed.

              • Yeah, I disagree.

                I advocate for strong regulation (that has low compliance overghead) around minimum standards for food quality and environmental health (standards that if implemented in a draconian way would put Sanford, among others, and half the dairy farmers out of business) during food production.

                I’m also confident that the state does not have and in fact would be near impossible to get variation of thought, culture and skill within its staff needed to produce the infinitely variable range of foods that we currently enjoy.

                While my daily intake consists of basic high quality goods that are available to everyone if they have the time to look for, and can afford them (good bread, organic staples and veges add a good 20%+ to my basic shopping bill).
                Sometimes it’s nice to treat yourself, family and guests to Medjoul Dates, Parmigiano-Reggiano or a world class Olive oil.

                I do understand your desire to run the folks who make tones of money producing shit food out of business, but a monopoly on food simply will not work the way you envision.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  I advocate for strong regulation…

                  Even if it was state owned we would still have strong regulation.

                  I’m also confident that the state does not have and in fact would be near impossible to get variation of thought, culture and skill within its staff needed to produce the infinitely variable range of foods that we currently enjoy.

                  Read The Entrepreneurial State. Basically, the state has far more variation in thought, culture and skill than any private enterprise. In fact, private enterprise is the one that’s locked into the straight jacket of having to make a profit and thus works to keep things the same and just looks to create more of the same. This is what happened at Fonterra.

                  While my daily intake consists of basic high quality goods that are available to everyone if they have the time to look for, and can afford them…

                  The people who have poor diets can’t afford them. Having the state provide them at cost is part of the answer of ensuring that they can.

                  I do understand your desire to run the folks who make tones of money producing shit food out of business, but a monopoly on food simply will not work the way you envision.

                  Actually, it will:

                  1. State buys enough farm land
                  2. State hires enough managers and hands to work those farms
                  3. State invests in huge R&D and encourages farm managers to submit ideas from themselves and the farm hands about running the farms and products. Also invites ideas from the population. IP belongs to the submitter so that they can be appropriately rewarded for it.
                  4. State sets up a distribution network across country to meet demand
                  5. UBI paid out so that everyone can afford the cost price free delivery of their weekly groceries (this will save millions if not billions of dollars per year in time and resources)

                  As I say, the state can, through cooperation, do far more and more efficiently than the private sector can dream of.

    • John Shears 2.2

      Are you suggesting that the trucking lobby pay a fair share of their , use of the roads? You seem to be saying that Kiwirail are “bludging” to stay in business. Facts please.

      • Ad 2.2.1

        “Helpfully NZTA doesn’t have to evaluate its motorway systems as a commercial operation to be continuously evaluated as value for money.”

        Perhaps that was just too oblique for you.

        Well aware of RUC charges, well aware of Track Access charges.
        Thanks for playing.

        Actually looking for policy information, if you’ve got an actual contribution.

        • Naturesong

          This does not address your inquiry specifically as to rail infrastructure funding. But Transport blog link at the bottom is pertinent.

          The Greens transport policy page and policy plan is centred on fixing Auckland’s transport infrastructure:

          • Complete the City Rail Link, cutting train travel times by up to 28 minutes per trip
          • Build a rail extension to Mt Roskill (with further rail extensions to the Airport by 2025 and the North Shore planned by 2030)
          • Electrify the rail network from Papakura to Pukekohe
          • Build a new bus lane on State Highway 16
          • Extend the Northern Busway to Albany and Newmarket
          • Establish a new high quality bus service across the upper harbour
          • Extend the AMETI Busway into Ellerslie and Manukau
          • Increase funding for cycling, walking infrastructure

          * increasing funding for regions – it’s not detailed how that money would be used, but Julie Anne Genter is very accessible. Email her.
          * subjecting all projects to more rigorous up to date cost/benefit analysis/modelling
          * reduce spend on motorways
          * maintain $ spend on maintenance – which works as in increase / km (as it relates to current spend) due to reduced rate of increase of motorways

          The Green party through Genter has also regularly exposed Brownlee’s ignorance in the house, and fought for Gisborne rail access, and against the retrograde step of changing electric trains for diesel on parts of the main line.

          The Transport blog is a very good source for news and analysis. They had this up a couple of weeks ago Funding Kiwirail and trucks.

          • Ad

            Yes I am well aware of the TransportBlog debates – and cheers I know the transport spokespeople already.

            I was just fishing for something fresh since the report was clearly going to come down the pipeline soon.

            Thanks anyway though.

  3. Chooky 3

    From the Daily Blog :

    “On the Israeli front they have propaganda to new levels. They are giving free visits to Israel not just to people like Slater but even Kiwi’s at consultancies on the Red Peak Flag team among others”.

    James Shaw wants the Red Peak flag ( the Red Peak corporate logo of a USA corporation and a British surveillance firm)

    …He wants the Red Peak flag so much that he supported John Key… and snubbed Labour (and NZF), the Greens traditional Left coalition partners… in order to get his Red Peak flag on the first referendum …which deliberately excluded the existing NZ flag with the Union Jack and Southern Cross (which is most what most New Zealanders want).

    …James Shaw and John Key thereby forced New Zealand into a costly second flag referendum. Both support the Red Peak flag and do NOT like the existing New Zealand flag

    …I wonder as the Israelis like the Red Peak Flag team so much as to offer them free trips to Israel….whether James Shaw has been invited on a free trip to Israel as well?..They must love him!

    And I hear James Shaw this morning arguing that Ron Marks (NZF) is “racist” because he objected to a Nact Korean MP patronisingly telling NZers to “grow up” and work on their holidays …Marks told her to “go back home!”`

    Is this really racist ?….I dont think so!..Do we want New Zealand workers forced to work in slave Labour Asian worker conditions? This would be to undermine our own humanitarian laws of worker and New Zealander rights !

    Once upon a time the Greens defended NZ workers’ conditions and holidays, which had been hard fought for over many decades, by New Zealand workers and their Trade Unions and their British worker and Trade Union counterparts.

    …imo James Shaw is either naive, inept or compromised. He does not seem to know how to work cooperatively with the Left, the Greens traditional coalition partners…and to date he certainly seems to be supporting jonkey Nactional.

    • left for deadshark 3.1

      I think Chooky the more I hear of, and from Mr Shaw, It seems his task is to take the Greens further right.
      Maybe they want to get closer to the right wing of labour…
      I can hear the howls from here, An no weka I will not link, I only run on about a gigabit a month, as OAB offend states, let google be your friend. 👿

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      And I hear James Shaw this morning arguing that Ron Marks (NZF) is “racist” because he objected to a Nact Korean MP patronisingly telling NZers to “grow up” and work on their holidays …Marks told her to “go back home!”`

      Is this really racist ?….I dont think so!..Do we want New Zealand workers forced to work in slave Labour Asian worker conditions? This would be to undermine our own humanitarian laws of worker and New Zealander rights !

      Yeah, I was gobsmacked by that. The fact that we used to actually have holidays was because we had grown up. Recently we’ve been reversing that trend because a few psychopaths want to be richer and think that everybody else should work all the time to make that so.

      • James 3.2.1

        That quote is bullshit.

        Marks did not say “Go back home” – he said “if you do not like New Zealand go back to Korea”.

        That IS racist.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Which is where she came from so, no, not racist.

          • Adele

            Teenaa koe, Draco

            Well, how is it that every time us Maaoris tell white folk to fuck off back to England or wherever, we are labelled racists?

            • Draco T Bastard

              Fucked if I know. I never considered that racist.

              • Adele

                Lol. Good answer.

                • Chooky

                  @Adele…your problem with sending “white folk” or Pakeha back to Britain… is not racism but logic and genetics

                  …. MOST Maori would have to “fuck off back to England” themselves …or the British Isles

                  … including you! …unless of course you are a full blooded Maori, which I very much doubt… because there are very few, if any, full blooded Maori around ( there were some full blooded Moriori but the Taranaki Maori just about exterminated them)

                  …there are many Maori around that look like Pakeha ( look at Ngai Tahu)….and not a few NZers who look like Pakeha but who actually consider themselves Maori

                  ….so how do you get around that problem…chop yourself up and send off an arm and a leg back to England??…or maybe your head?

                  • Bill

                    Chooky. The US determines indigenous people by blood percentages meaning that there’ll be no indigenous peoples…at least as far as government is concerned. NZ doesn’t have that racist framework.

                    Essentially then, as I understand it, if your of Maori culture and a sun-burned red head with 1% Maori biological lineage – you’re Maori.

                    And that’s as it should be by my reckoning.

                    • weka

                      Yep, and blood quantum was something invented by racists as a tool of colonisation.

                      Some tribes in the US don’t even need the bloodlines. If you get adopted into the tribe you are part of the tribe. These people know some things about social coherence and social intelligence that the Eurocentric cultures have forgotten.

                  • Adele

                    Kiaora, Chooky

                    My Mother’s whakapapa does not contain white DNA and she is not 200 years old. My Father however has both Irish and American blood coursing through his Mataatua and Te Arawa veins. My Irish and American tūpuna witnessed first-hand the devastating effects of colonisation with the American arriving here in 1842.

                    My daily ritual includes a karakia of thanks inclusive of all my whakapapa. Without their collective efforts I would not exist so perfectly today.

                    In direct response to your query, perhaps there are degrees of whiteness with each invoking a unique response along a continuum of “fuck off” to “fuck, stay!”

                    Anyone that has an appreciation for the uniqueness of Te Ao Māori, please stay. The rest, fuck off. The Māori amongst us who are so colonised in their thinking – if only they could just fuck off to the DNA of their choosing.

    • M. Gray 3.3

      I don’t think Ron Marks was being racists he was just telling it how it is.
      This brings to mind the saying , the pot calling the kettle black.

  4. lprent 4

    For your amusement from Italy and the chilly work I sometimes do

    “Accidental selfie while trying to zoom in on a recalcitrant bit of electronics”

    I was trying to read some micro serial numbers using the flash camera utility on my ASUS phone, and I managed to flip the camera lenses to the backwards facing one…

    It could also have caption of
    “Sysop considers what to do to troll”


    • Ad 4.1

      For all that severe solitude and concrete, for a moment I thought you were at the Labour Party conference!

    • proud poppy wearer 4.2

      It could also have caption of
      “Sysop considers what to do to troll”


      ” Smelly old socialist does more naval gazing”

      • lprent 4.2.1

        You do realise that I volunteered for and was in the army for quite a few years. I really can’t abide dickheads waving their patriotic dicks around. My usual question is to ask what have they done recently for our society… The answer is usually an embarrassed silence followed by meaningless blather.

        I’d class you as one of those more interested in dick waving rather than doing. Just another armchair general.

        • proud poppy wearer

          Talking of dick waving that could also be worked into a caption with relative ease.

          You do seem to have a rather interesting fixation with penises.

      • greywarshark 4.2.2

        That last one was quite witty proud poppy wearer. There are caption contests every month about, and you would be a winner there, so look out for the next one.

      • McFlock 4.2.3

        ” Smelly old socialist does more naval gazing”
        I doubt that there are any ships in the immediate vicinity of where the picture was taken…

        edit: damn, IV beat me to it… by 4 hours or so lol

        • proud poppy wearer

          Well he does have the penis fixation, so perhaps naval was more appropriate than navel.

          • McFlock

            Ah. So your poppy pride doesn’t extend to avoiding tired tropes about the maritime service.

          • lprent

            I use the penis meme because it is effective on dickheads. Throw out a barb about their penis and watch the dickheads chase after it like a angry fox terrier after a hedgehog.

            People who don’t tie their identity to their genitalia will usually ignore the barb and concentrate on the content of the comment. It is a useful way of seperating the adults from the immature boys.

            Your reaction clearly shows where your brains lie, and it isn’t in your brain.

            • proud poppy wearer

              An angry fox.. an hedgehog too if it takes your fancy as much as the penile talk does

    • Chooky 4.3

      lol…you are more handsome than I thought

    • Olwyn 4.4

      For an accidental selfie, that turned out rather well. It looks like still from a movie.

      • lprent 4.4.1

        I actually took 3 photos (the usual multishot). This was the only one in focus. I clipped the image to oval because it got rid of the junk on the side as I was off balance. Amazing what editing can do.

        Pity it can’t get rid of the baggy eyes. But it is the brains that count right?

    • Rosemary McDonald 4.5

      Scary. Kinda looks like the Sunday school version of God.

  5. Muttonbird 5

    Just 102 houses from the 39,000 target have been completed in just 2 of the 95 SHAs set up by the current government. Other land designated SHA land is being used by developers for land banking.

    I believe Nick Smith had no intention of receiving pressure on housing, rather he wanted to be seen to be doing something with the least possible impact on the wealthy.

    • savenz 5.1

      Creating SHA has created instant multi millionaires for those who own land around Auckland. Quite a lot in John Key’s electorate too.

      For the investigative out there maybe do a bit of research and see who is benefiting and who they are friends with.

      I think you will find the governments interest in changing the zoning is related to this for mates rather than tackling the real problems – cost of building, monopolies, cost of infrastructure, cost of transport, lack of builders, immigration, foreign investor category investments.

      There is plenty of land in NZ it is creating the house that costs so much and connecting it to services and transport.

      And those houses being created are not affordable or sustainable, and actually taking away affordable housing in the most part and creating eyesores and other problems for the existing communities.

      • tc 5.1.1

        That was always the intention, make alot of BS noises about solving an issue but make changes that enrich your mates and backers but doesn’t actually resolve the issue.

        RONS follows the same pattern.

  6. Lyn 6

    proud poppy wearer – while I can attest that Lynn has his malodorous moments, I can assure you he naval gazes less than anyone I’ve ever met. And if age is a crime – well we’re all for the wall aren’t we?

  7. proud poppy wearer 7

    “And if age is a crime – well we’re all for the wall aren’t we?”

    True, very true.

  8. adam 8

    Did you know 14 families were evicted form a boarding house in Avondale on Saturday. Illegally, but then again with this Tory government, what is legal or illegal these days? Odd this has not made the news, I mean with the bleeding of funding of womens refuge, a boarding house which takes single mothers with small children is the free market solution – right? So a place these women could go to get themselves away from, men beating them up is a good thing? It does seem we are not to mention that there is something very wrong with our society when we sweep under the carpet the consequences of ignoring the fact men still beat, and kill women. No doubt some Tory scum bag, will think of some way to make it comfortable for them to ignore the fact they put some many women at risk by their ideological purity. At the end of the day, it is a moral question, do you want to live in a society where women are second class citizens and punch bags – or not?

    Back to the fourteen families, homeless on less that 24 hours notice, now living with friends, relatives, in cars, under bridges and on the street. I’m happy to say I heard today, that some Labour M.P’s have helped were they can, but even they are hindered by the ideological purity of a government, not of the people. When did we decide that society was but for the rich? When did an accident of birth decide someone was better than someone else? When did greed is good, and opulence is a right – become the norm?

    Have people forgot what it means to love thy neighborer? To stand as one? To know what free air smells like? I think so. When we have a society willing to ignore 14 families illegally evicted, and a media who won’t even question the fact – what have we become? Because those Tory fools who start with a pray in parliament are not Christians. They have given up on love, grace and the Gospels. They walk with deceiver.

  9. millsy 9

    Why were they evicted?

  10. sabine 10

    and this is just heart breaking.

    “Local municipal and church authorities this week declared that the island’s cemetery was full, leaving them no option but to store dozens of bodies in a refrigerated container.

    “We hope that the authorities will be able to find a solution quickly,” said Effi Latsoudi, member of a local migrant support group.”

    “At the local morgue – which is also full to capacity – coroner Thodoris Noussios is at his wit’s end.

    “This morning we received five more bodies. This tragedy must stop,” he sighs.

    Over 50 bodies are currently being kept in the morgue and a 12-metre refrigerated container outside the hospital that was supplied by private donors, Noussios told AFP.”

  11. sabine 11

    and file this under war crime or shit happens

    “What we know is that we were running a hospital treating patients, including wounded combatants from both sides—this was not a ‘Taliban base,’” Liu declared. “The question remains as to whether our hospital lost its protected status in the eyes of the military forces engaged in this attack—and if so, why. The answer does not lie within the MSF hospital. Those responsible for requesting, ordering and approving the airstrikes hold these answers.”

    How the carnage unfolded

    U.S. airstrikes started around 2 am. At the time, staff were treating 105 patients and attempting to catch up on a “backlog of pending surgeries” because the night had been relatively quiet.

    A “series of multiple, precise, and sustained airstrikes targeted the main hospital building, leaving the rest of the buildings in the MSF compound comparatively untouched,” which happens to correlate with the exact GPS coordinates that were provided to “parties to the conflict.”

    Two of the three “operating theaters were in use,” and “three international and twenty-three national MSF staff were caring for patients or performing surgeries in this same main building. There were eight patients in the ICU and six patients in the area of the operating theaters.”

    “MSF staff recall that the first room to be hit was the ICU [intensive care unit], where MSF staff were caring for a number of immobile patients, some of whom were on ventilators. Two children were in the ICU. MSF staff were attending to these critical patients in the ICU at the time of the attack and were directly killed in the first airstrikes or in the fire that subsequently engulfed the building. Immobile patients in the ICU burned in their beds.”

  12. Michael 12

    Very good (and unbiased) piece in RNZ about Little and Labour. Worth a read.

  13. Penny Bright 13

    Interesting how there is a deliberate blurring of the language and muddying of the waters?

    The term ‘social housing’ – is now being used to incorporate ‘State housing’?

    It’s not complicated.

    STATE housing is PUBLIC.

    SOCIAL housing is PRIVATE.

    In Glen Innes, directly affected affected State tenants are facing the transferal of 2,800 Housing NZ properties to the Tamaki Redevelopment Company (TRC).

    The TRC is a new hybrid – 59% owned by the Crown and 41% owned by Auckland Council.

    The mechanism for the privatisation of STATE housing in Tamaki – is first to TRANSFER 2,800 Housing NZ properties to the Tamaki Redevelopment Company (TRC).

    I am opposed to this.

    Penny Bright

    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  14. Rodel 14

    Haven’t heard much about Ponce Charles and duckchess Camilla. Good!

  15. Tautoko Mangō Mata 15

    Is it possible to start a new topic for TPP analysis based on the released TPP text?

    “Article 11.2* of the agreement confirms that financial services providers are covered under the minimum standard of treatment obligation. This means that almost any change in financial regulations affecting future profits could be challenged in an extra-judicial tribunal, even if they equally applied to foreign and domestic firms and even if they were enacted in response to a crisis.”

    *Article 11.2: Scope
    1. This Chapter shall apply to measures adopted or maintained by a Party relating
    (a) financial institutions of another Party;
    (b) investors of another Party, and investments of those investors, in
    financial institutions in the Party’s territory; and
    (c) cross-border trade in financial services.
    2. Chapter 9 (Investment) and Chapter 10 (Cross-Border Trade in Services) shall
    apply to measures described in paragraph 1 only to the extent that those Chapters or
    Articles of those Chapters are incorporated into this Chapter.
    (a) Article 9.6 (Minimum Standard of Treatment), ”

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