Open mike 07/01/2024

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 7th, 2024 - 46 comments
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46 comments on “Open mike 07/01/2024 ”

  1. gsays 1

    Just wanna kick off the day by acknowledging and thanking weka for all the mahi yesterday.

    At times it was akin to herding kittens.

    Thanks for your time and patience yesty weka, it will be a positive influence on TS.

  2. Muttonbird 2

    Not entirely sure what Mark Mitchell is up to. Still on holiday, perhaps? He has strutted around for the last years, a self proclaimed sheriff who was going to crush the gangs.

    But here they are in the $1000 VVIP section of Juicy Fest with Bulldog face tattoos, and gang colours starting fights and barking like dogs.

    So much for the rhetoric.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/fights-assaults-mongrel-mob-gang-members-ruin-juicy-fest-wellington-man-says/EZB3GWF3EVBMHI2JGSLW2EKF6E/

  3. mac1 3

    Here's another who deserves our gratitude. A story on Stuff of a remarkable woman to whom I lift my hat. She spent twenty years, including Christmases, in an Auckland court advocating for, helping, supporting the homeless and dispossessed, the 'returned citizens' and the broken ones. At 72 years of age, she retires to be with her whanau.

    One story- a Māori man in the dock is not granted bail since the judge says he has no suitable home address. His calm reply and the interpretation given it by Whaea Michelle Kidd is a short history of generations of New Zealanders.

    A sobering challenge or wero such as she gave to the court is given to us also, with her comment on the effects of poverty and inter-generational dispossession for Māori.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/301031777/whaea-to-the-homeless-who-wasnt-afraid-to-give-judges-a-growling-retires-after-20-years

    • Molly 3.1

      She sounds like an admirable woman, working from the heart. The stories relate to all she has helped, without referring to them as solely Māori.

      This comment is an opinion, based on her perspective rather than evidence. Not all Māori had access to, or possession of land. What they had – as opposed to non-Māori were networks of kin, and community places to restore and heal.

      "“When you dispossess people of their land, there is an intergenerational trauma that should not be denied.”

      She spoke of an example where a judge declined bail for a Māori man because he didn’t have a suitable address.

      In a calm voice, the man managed to respond: “You took our f…… land, and now I’m going to prison because I don’t have any.”

      This recitation is a catechism. This man may know the details of an historical land claim directly related to him, but that detail is unnecessary when it can be used as the sole excuse for his present situation.

      That simplistic view, creates an encouragement of passive victimhood which is not helpful to current generations. Bastion Point has living people who are directly affected by government land taking. The historical – and convoluted land confiscations from the latter part of the 1800s, have processes available and although may have direct, immediate and devastating consequences on those elders who were dispossessed, that should lessen over generations. Māori – as with any other people – possess resilience and autonomy, and are currently living in a country where they have the same rights and access to justice as everyone else.

      Since that time, intervening generations have had trauma shared across all NZers:

      Spanish flu – https://nzhistory.govt.nz/te-akomanga/contexts-activities/comparing-pandemics#:~:text=The%20flu%20pandemic%20of%201918,so%20communities%20were%20already%20traumatised.

      The World Wars: https://nzhistory.govt.nz/war/first-world-war-by-numbers

      The polio epidemic: https://teara.govt.nz/en/epidemics/page-5#:~:text=New%20Zealand%20experienced%20polio%20epidemics,if%20they%20catch%20this%20disease.
      …etc…

      One of my affiliated maraes held a welcome back weekend, full of workshops, which was great. One – however – was a workshop run by a very dedicated woman who worked with youth, who was determined to make the marae the first – and only – support place for young people struggling. The problem that arises though – comes from the fact that further conversation during the weekend is that various forms of abuse committed against young people, were suspected to be done by people holding positions of authority in that same marae.

      Healthy systems, with appropriate safeguarding and effective constant review – whether Māori or not – give better outcomes. Māori can have organisations and networks – just like non-Māori – that don't perform as they say on the label.

      I have a great deal of respect for the older women in my family, and their amazing ability to nurture and care for others, but am fairly pragmatic in what is achieved in the long run.

      This paragraph is an example of emotive writing:

      "A recent example was her work with a 501 deported from Australia for breaking the law. Whaea Michelle doesn’t use a number to refer to people. Instead, she calls them “a returned citizen”.

      He appeared in the dock as a “staunch Aussie” and was uncooperative when asked questions by the judge.

      Whaea Michelle went into the dock with him, leaned towards him, and quietly spoke the words “welcome back to your whenua”.

      “He burst into tears and I had to hold him.”

      It leaves the reader here. My question is: "…and then what?"

      It's missing the complete story, and follow up to this person who has been used as a prop for the main dramatic character. That is not to say that nothing else was done for this man, but THAT aspect is the evidential part of the anecdote and is missing.

      • Molly 3.1.1

        …as an addendum.. most Nanas are spectacularly good at growling.

        It's considered to be both a privilege of old age, and an expected form of affection.

      • mac1 3.1.2

        Thanks for the response, Molly. You're right that there is a story to be told of what happened to the returned citizen after the court appearance, but for me the story was that even the staunchest have feelings as human beings and that welcoming and compassion open the door to those returning from whatever exile or distancing. In fact, thinking about this, it's better we are left to imagine what happened because that will engage our hope and our compassion and not allow negativity to dominate, if we knew the real outcome, such as "he got what he deserved" or "typical woke judge let him off too lightly."

        I do believe there is a place for emotion and emotive writing. We can recognise it. I did, feeling quite choked as I told my wife of the article. The writer was writing about the power of emotion, after all.

        As for the power of a retained sense of history, an older woman who was one of several powerful in my upbringing, an Irish nun, once gave me a growling about respect for history. As an adult I made some joking reference to her about some of my ancestors with Scottish names who must have been part of the Protestant Ulster Plantation.

        "There are some things," she said, "we don't joke about!"

        Because it's not history. It's still part of life- the consequences of history and past actions. The poverty, the dispossession, the loss of culture and respect, the racism, the misogyny, the loss of hope, the crushing personal despair.

        That is what we here in Aotearoa have been challenged with, in 2024. In our next term or two of government we will have to meet it.

        • Molly 3.1.2.1

          As mentioned, the growling is both a familiar and loved aspect of relationships with many beloved Nannies. I think the deftness that skill requires benefits from decades of caring and honed practice.

          (Some old ladies- no doubt, like Irish nuns – hone other skills, and are just mean).

    • Ad 3.2

      Truly inspiring thankyou.

    • millsy 3.3

      It seems her retirement comes just as people like her are needed the most, given that this new goverment is determined to use police, courts and prisons to solve social problems.

  4. Jenny 4

    Numbers count

    15, Fifteen, Judges sit on the bench of the International Court of Justice, ICJ.

    The current 15 sitting judges of the ICJ are:

    President Joan Donoghue (United States), Vice-President Kirill Gevorgian (Russian Federation), Judge Mohamed Bennouna (Morocco), Judge Patrick Lipton Robinson (Jamaica) and Judge Hilary Charlesworth (Australia). Judge Peter Tomka (Slovakia), Judge Ronny Abraham (France), Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf (Somalia), Judge Xue Hanqin (China), Judge Julia Sebutinde (Uganda), Judge Dalveer Bhandari (India), Judge Nawaf Salam (Lebanon), Judge Iwasawa Yuji (Japan), Judge Georg Nolte (Germany) and Judge Leonardo Nemer Caldeira Brant (Brazil).

    Under Article 31, paragraphs 2 and 3, of the Statute of the Court, a nation bringing a case to the ICJ that does not have a sitting judge on the ICJ, have the right to appoint 1, One, Judge ad hoc to the hear and decide on that specific case.

    Judges ad hoc take part in any decision on terms of complete equality with their colleagues

    South Africa have exercised their right under Article 31 and have appointed Justice Dikgang Moseneke as their judge ad hoc.

    16, Sixteen, Judges will decide in the South Africa v Israel genocide case.

    16 Judges opens up the possibility of a tied vote.

    There is 1, One. Presiding President of the ICJ.

    In the event of tied vote. the Presiding President gets an extra vote to break the deadlock.

    The current President of the ICJ is Judge Joan E. Donoghue. On the strength of this one case, Judge Donoghue's name is likely to become familiar to the world. In the unlikely event that the vote of the judges is tied, and Judge Donoghue has to cast the deciding vote, Judge Donoghue's name will go down in history.

    (Information for this comment was compiled from several sources).

    • Jenny 4.1

      Oops! I neglected to notice that Israel also does not have a sitting judge on the ICJ, which means that Israel too has the right to appoint a judge ad hoc to help decide the case.

      [deleted]

      https://www.newarab.com/news/who-representing-israel-s-africa-gaza-genocide-case

      • weka 4.1.1

        deleted copypasta. Did you read my mod note from yesterday?

      • Jenny 4.1.2

        It seems from the New Arab article, the Israel defence seems to be in total disarray.

        https://www.newarab.com/news/who-representing-israel-s-africa-gaza-genocide-case

        With four days to go to court, time is running out for them to get their act together.

        The clock is ticking

        It looks likely from this evidence that Israel will be mounting a minimal defence of the charges being brought against them by South Africa, and instead are trying to use extra legal measures to pressure the court to reject making any order against them.

        Inside Israel's plan to quash South Africa's Gaza genocide case

        Barak Ravid, Jan 5, 2024

        ……The cable, sent by the Israeli Foreign Ministry on Thursday, illustrates Israel's diplomatic action plan ahead of next week's ICJ hearing: to create international pressure on the court to not issue an injunction that orders Israel to suspend its military campaign in Gaza.

        https://www.axios.com/2024/01/05/south-africa-gaza-genocide-icj-israel-plan

        Numbers Count:

        New Zealand along with many other countries would have received one of these diplomatic cables. Which could account for the fact that while New Zealand and 31, Thirty one, other countries submitted their country's legal opinion to the ICJ over the case of Ukraine vs Russia, only two countries, Malaysia and Turkey have made submissions giving their country's legal opinion on the case South Africa vs. Israel.

        Our parliamentary reporters and opposition MPs need to be asking the Minister of Foreign Affairs if pressure from Israel influenced his Ministry's decision not to file a submission as an “Intervening State” giving our country’s legal opinion in the case of South Africa vs. Israel.

    • Ad 4.2

      Just don't get your hopes up that ICJ rulings will alter Israel's policy or political direction.

      May even make them more determined. Particularly if Hamas are called as witnesses

  5. Robert Guyton 5

    What would happen if Atlas shrugged?

    "In the novel Ayn Rand compares this mythology to her view that the leaders of industry collectively held up the world, and had long struggled and suffered under the weight of it. Her response is that they should simply shrug it off, let the world fall to pieces, and thus show who’s really in charge here. That’s the basic plot of the entire novel: that a relatively small cadre of hard-working creators is the only thing keeping industrial society operating, and when most of them agree to go on strike, and withdraw their efforts from society, everything quickly falls apart."

    _(ツ)_/

    • weka 5.1

      please provide the link.

    • Pat 5.2

      Russia today may be worth watching to determine what happens when (the metaphorical) Atlas shrugs.

      The captains of industry (and finance) have largely abandoned Russia in the face of the threat of sanctions and Putins actions….the current coping mechanisms dont appear (from this distance) to be terribly successful. and indicate worse to come.

      • Robert Guyton 5.2.1

        The bind being the industrialists build a civilisation that requires their permanent dominance; collapsing is unthinkable!!

        Most of civilisation has swallowed that myth.

    • James Thrace 5.3

      I struggled through Atlas Shrugged. Most of the novel was a turgid maelstrom of fantastical thinking insofar as private enterprises would deliver social goods better and cheaper than the public sector.

      halfway through, the diatribe really doubled down on that. Rand’s writing really went for the extreme end of government failures when explaining why Taggart Industries was the only way forward. A giant behemoth of a corporation, beset by internal bureaucracy and cost pressures, overseen by Dagny, was in essence just an allegory for comparing with a government behemoth, beset by bureaucracy, overseen by a Minister, struggling with cost pressures.

      what atlas shrugged completely neglected was that government is not as beset by cost pressures as private sector is. If funds are needed, govt can always get money and spread it out over the longer term (60 years in the case of Interisland iRex project). Whereas private sector, while being able to pay off over a 5-20 year period, still needs to ensure a steady transfer of profit to the shareholders.

      In all, after 1071 pages of the most trashy novel I’ve ever read, that so few people have done, its easy to see why the Atlas Network focus on the “private delivers better” claim of the novel, whilst completely ignoring that Rand’s fantastical thinking completely ignored the ability of the state to take a longer term horizon view.

      Even the handful of “liberals” i know that think the state needs to be smaller have never read the novel.

      My own take is that the novel was a great reason why the state needs to take ownership and control of things that actually contribute to a functioning society – transport, ferries, electricity and internet.

      • Robert Guyton 5.3.1

        Well described, James!

        I wonder how any "smart" Randian might respond to your critique.

        • James Thrace 5.3.1.1

          Thanks Robert.

          my guess is no Randian will respond given how few of them seem to have read the book (although that is based on my limited experience) but even David Seymour has said he hasn’t read the book.

          Anyone who believes the private sector is better should read the novel after which they might realise social utilities are actually better retained in state control.

          NZs own experience with the railways should be enough for that, but unlikely historical knowledge will be a feature in such analysis!

  6. Tricledrown 8

    Listening to RNZ they are playing New Zealand song's and on comes Pauli Faumauina's Land of Plenty it makes me cry to hear the lyrics. Now it’s the country of the Landed Gentry!

    Food poverty when we have enough food to feed 40 million

    Housing shortage when we have enough land and trees to house a 100 million

    The clean rivers all but a few can't be swam in or drink out of now.

    thats all happened relatively recently.

    I have rewritten the song

    Came to this land of vultures praying on the peasants

    Came to this land of bad times where food banks are plenty

    Came to this land of hate and division.

    Where only the landed Gentry have entry!

    They are the only ones now that have plenty while the rest of us can't pay the rent today.

    The BNZ used Pauli's song to sell us out while the peasants struggle to even get enough food from the ever expanding number of food bank's

  7. millsy 10

    Yes….I am BACK everyone!!! Ready to take on this abomination of the 6th National government.

  8. Stephen D 11

    Is the coalition on the wrong side of history again?

    From Kiwipolitico.

    https://www.kiwipolitico.com/2024/01/about-the-houthi-red-sea-blockage/

    ”New Zealand has already chosen a rhetorical side based, presumably, on its support for the principles of freedom of navigation and its rejection of the argument that the Houthis are doing the little that they can to resist genocide in Gaza. Should NZ send a warship to join the CTF-153 naval picket fence protecting commercial ships running the gauntlet at Bad-el-Mandeb, then it will have further staked its position on the side of its Western security partners as well as put its sailors in harm’s way. Some will say that it has placed more value on containers than the lives of Gazan children.

    That may be a pragmatic decision based on sincere belief in the “freedom of the seas” principle, disbelief in the Houthi’s sincerity when it comes to resisting genocide (or the argument itself), concern about Iranian machinations and the presence of Russia and the PRC in the regional balance of power contest, indirect support for Israel or simply paying, as John Key once said, “the price for being on the team.” Whatever the reason or combination thereof, it appears to the neutral eye that once again NZ has put facilitation of trade ahead of upholding universal human rights in its foreign policy calculations.”

    • Ad 11.1

      Watch the oil futures graphs closely, and you'll see if we should be interested.

    • SPC 11.2

      Over time it has become clear that the attacks were against the trade of nations in Europe supportive of Ukraine and thus did not impact on Russia or China etc.

      Which makes the claim of the Houthi to be focused on opposition to genocide clearly fallacious. Unsurprising since they began in response to Israeli attacks in Gaza even before serious claims of war crimes, let alone genocide, had occurred.

  9. Joe90 12

    People spent years calling for some sort of accountability and all it took was a tv drama.

    The Metropolitan Police is investigating the Post Office over potential fraud offences after the wrongful prosecution of subpostmasters.

    The police confirmed on Friday that it is looking into the handling of the Horizon IT scandal – "such as the monies recovered from subpostmasters as a result of prosecutions or civil actions".

    https://news.sky.com/story/post-office-investigated-by-police-over-potential-fraud-offences-13042832

    Edit:

    @flaminhaystacks
    THREAD
    Seema Misra who is married to Davinder, took over the Post Office in West Byfleet, Surrey, in 2005

    She noticed the Horizon computer system showed a shortfall of £80 on her first day of training

    The trainer told her the accounts were never exact

    https://twitter.com/flaminhaystacks/status/1743545499104244208

    More on the PO shortfalls scandal

    https://twitter.com/flaminhaystacks/status/1742094530713632768

  10. lprent 13

    Finished doing the storage hardware updates at 0016 this monday morning. SPC noticed me taking the site offline even if no-one else did.. This was porting the old motherboard off the bleeding edge one that I put in in 2017 to one that was current at the start of last year

    Theoretically, the site should be running about 11x faster on data storage operations. For commenters, that means on comments. But my testing says that it is about 6-8x faster. I need to look at other contributing factors like the spam filters. There are other changes to the backup operations that also helped.

    The main reason for doing this now was developing the new site theme.

    I wanted to test it with the live data of 30 thousand posts and 1.8 million comments. Works on the test set of 500 post / 2800 comment testing data set. However with the relentless scraper activity by bots, that was proving to be hard to do.

    The full-site theme editing was just too slow when there was so much background traffic – especially if I turned local and offsite caching off.

    Back to work tomorrow so the theme gets the rest of its testing and fixes in unpaid time. So it will be a little longer.

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