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Open mike 07/02/2014

Written By: - Date published: 6:54 am, February 7th, 2014 - 135 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmike

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

135 comments on “Open mike 07/02/2014 ”

  1. “..Russell Brand: Philip Seymour Hoffman is another victim of extremely stupid drug laws:

    In Hoffman’s domestic or sex life there is no undiscovered riddle–

    – the man was a drug addict –

    – and thanks to our drug laws

    – his death inevitable..”

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/feb/06/russell-brand-philip-seymour-hoffman-drug-laws

    phillip ure..

    • did you know that people approach our ‘drug-services’ with problems with amphetamines..

      ..and that they are put onto the most addictive drug..and one that is harder to kick than heroin..?

      ..namely methadone..(nazi-smack..so-called because it was developed by the nazis..when the course of war cut them off from supplies of opium..

      ..did you know that cold-turkey on heroin may feel like a form of long/slow/nasty death..?

      ..but it will not kill you..

      ..did you know that cold turkey on methadone can kill you..?

      ..did you know that morphine was first hailed as a cure for opium-addicts..?

      ..did you know that heroin was first hailed as a cure for morphine addicts..?

      ..which brings us to methadone..(the worst of them all..to date..)

      ..did you know that there is a drug..that will bring people back from overdoses…?

      ..why is that not widely available..(at needle-exchanges/pharmacies..)..?

      ..a bill has just been fast-tracked thru an american state legislature..to do just that..

      ..part of what i am calling the ‘hoffman-effect’..

      ..in that his death appears to have kicked off a ‘sensible’ discussion about a subject we have got so so wrong..since forever..

      ..sadly..that conversation is not happening here..

      ..and shows little sign of happening..

      ..and left and right here are as blind as each other on this..

      ..here we have labour-people williams and pagani..both on media this week snorting in derision at any ideas of any sanity around cannabis-laws..f.f.s..!

      ..how far are labour/greens/mana etc..from any sanity on/around drugs..

      ..from what i can see..

      ..they are all fucked in the head..on this..

      ..that moralistic/judgemental/wowser/blue-stocking virus (where any logic flies out the window)..

      ..that is so redolent here..

      ..is firmly in control..

      ..in the minds of people who should know better..

      ..who should have bigger fucken brains than that..

      ..but it would seem not..

      ..let’s just keep on doing the same things eh..?

      ..and expecting different outcomes..?

      ..are we..?

      ..phillip ure..

        • Tim 1.1.1.1

          +1.
          Pity its not compulsory reading for the ‘experts’ making the decisions – and I mean all those who’ve got us to where we are today!
          Those that decided that Hanmer, the likes of Care NZ’s Marton centre, and countless others needed to be closed.
          When you look back over time, decisions such as these have done more damage than good, as has the idea of criminalising addicts rather than treating various addictions as illnesses.
          Go way way back ….. make Chinese opium smokers in Hawke’s Bay criminals…..
          make various drugs illegal and punish users – e.g. heroin ….. what happens? Homebake (far more dangerous in terms of the lethal shit in it’s ingredients when the amateur ‘baker’ sees an earn in it; others see the potential for fast money and violence, gang involvement becomes the norm, etc.)! Ban the next thing on the list …… similar results ….. right up to where we are today – and the Police and others merely scream about what a problem it all is. Well Derrrr – what did they THINK was going to happen.
          Phil …. you’re correct re doing the same old shit and expecting a different outcome. I’m not sure what it will take for many of them to see the bleeding obvious.
          There’s another thing that interests me (from a sociological perspective).
          When people live in poverty, and find the going pretty tuff – when there is no obvious way out, or means of AT LEAST improving their circumstance, it’s not all that surprising to me that they might seek means of escape (or at least indulge in escapist activity) – be it booze, or gambling, or ‘P’, or Methadone diversion, OR whatever.
          The solution is CERTAINLY not one where criminalisation, punishment, comparative judgements made by those with holier-than-thou attitudes is warranted. Hasn’t worked so far (and I mean after several decades). WHY do we expect that it’s going to now?

          It amuses me hearing the piss-head-contractor-self-employed-Kiwi-hardworking-‘bloke’ (often with fuck-all capacity for logical reasoning or critical thought) chanting the “pull yasef tagetha men, get with tha progrem” – i.e. right before going home, engineering an argument ‘with the missus’, then beating the shit out of her. (Often JK’s aspirational vushun to get ahead (a head) is paramount in their minds – that silly fukn bitch just doesn unna Stan (aye?)

          …. and that’s just ONE of my visions of the Kiwi attitudinal outlook (“going forward’)
          …… another one is …… perhaps …..’if they only fukn knew!’

          ….. if they only knew the various human frailties behind some of their current ‘idols’
          ……. if they only knew (let’s just say – “for example”) one of our top trauma specialists whose worked in ‘the system’ is a junkie in recovery – subject to the very same that article you offered above)
          …….. if they only knew a certain ‘science advisor’ has secrets in his closet regarding his very close relatives (one a practicing GP last time I heard) with a liking for Pethidene, Palfium, and various other junkie luvlies – taken intravenously.
          ……. if they only knew …..
          …………(eh?) as you might say.

          Now obviously – even with the above examples I’ve given, the peeps are entitled to their privacy!
          BUT perhaps it could be useful if those WITH certain skeletons in their closets who prop up the various prejudices to STFU instead of demonising their fellow dysfunctioals, OR (perhaps like a Kirwin) – grow some balls and speak out,

          ……. and those WITHOUT what they consider to be those skeletons should start to realise that they’re perhaps JUST a tweet, or a tarted-up magazine masqueurading as the haven for investigative johnolism, or a TV$ CampbellLive, or a Q+A, or a foul Blubber-oil-bleached outlet, or a muppet apologist running on a Kiwiblog platform, or…… WHOEVER! …. they just an instant away from that stack of shitcans suddenly changing theur ‘opinion’ when they become part of that demographic where they can claim ‘victimhood’.
          (Ekshly, when they get to claim that status – they generally scream the loudest)

      • Chooky 1.1.2

        +1 …thanks Phillip …very informative

      • greywarbler 1.1.3

        Hey phillip the though processes in your piece are effective.
        Wtill not many joined up paragraphs.

        Though.

    • Ron 1.2

      +1000 for Russel Brand’s comment

  2. Tim 2

    “did you know that people approach our ‘drug-services’ with problems with amphetamines..

    ..and that they are put onto the most addictive drug..and one that is harder to kick than heroin..?}”

    I did P U and its unbelievably stupid! Harm reduction I think they call it!
    Actually …. stupid on so many levels.
    Trying to fix a fried brain by also frying their teeth and disguising symptoms of other physical health problems they probably have.

  3. Any thoughts on the NZ Herald and its front page “Protest-Free News Pages” declaration yesterday? With a cute little logo featuring a clenched white fist?

  4. Tiger Mountain 4

    The ‘thin blue line’ seems to be getting fatter according to the NZ public anyway, going on the 835 complaints registered in recent months.
    Not that examining themselves via the IPCA sees too many members of this aberrant culture sanctioned.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11197764

  5. Polish Pride 5

    So as we have effectively had a short week this week with buggerall people working today and thinking about how relatively painless it was to have to work Monday – Wednesday before getting two days off, it got me thinking. perhaps we should change the way things work so that instead of working 5 days every week before getting two off we should instead change it to 3 days on 2 days off. Thoughts?

    • McFlock 5.1

      it’d bugger the calendar

      • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1

        Nah, we’d just have to find new names for the days.

        Sleepy, Dozey, Sneezy, Doc and Bashful.

        Two days of leisure, a sick day, a doctor’s appointment, and one day at work being ridden hard by an angry boss 🙂

    • karol 5.2

      With our increasing technologies the 5 day working week should have been ditched a while back – opening up more jobs for more people.

      Of course that mean that people would need to be paid a fair wage for the hours they work.

      • Polish Pride 5.2.1

        problem is that under the current system there is a massive driver to increase profit and reduce costs in order to stay competitive in what is essentially a global market. The drive to maximize returns to company owners is a big driver for this. I agree that if we are to stick with this system (and I don’t think we should) workers need to be paid a living wage. but it would need to be phased in and applied accross the board. It would also need to be applied in other countries around the world also.

        Edit: I think that if a government came into power and said righto living wage will be law in two years time from date X that would be enough time for us to make the necessary changes to enable it in my business.

      • Watching 5.2.2

        Karol,

        Are you suggesting schools go to a 3 day week
        ……. or would schools work to the same 3 day week as parents working timetable, or kids at school Mon to Wed & my 3 days is Wed to Fri
        ……..do kids have two teachers with split teaching
        As a parent of school age children this not something I would support

        I don’t get your comment ” increasing technologies the 5 day working week should have been ditched a while back”. There are certainly areas whereby technology has certainly impacted the way we work i.e processing transactions – online banking rather than using a bank teller.
        However, in many areas technologies has created new jobs and industries. The work I do, the companies I have worked for/contact to did not exist when I left university.

        I suggest that you could indirectly create further income inequality even with “people would need to be paid a fair wage for the hours they work” as some people would:
        1. work a 3 day week
        2. work 2 jobs of say maybe 3 days & 2 days
        3. continue to work in jobs of 40/50/60 hrs because that what they do – doctors, small business owners, researchers etc

        • karol 5.2.2.1

          Public services and businesses could still open 5 -7 days a week. Staff could work on rotation or job share – happens already with businesses that open 7 days a week.

          In case you haven’t noticed, a large number of people have no jobs. So, if people in jobs worked less days/hours, then there would be more jobs to spread around. And that would require higher wages per hour.

          It would have to be worked towards gradually – maybe a 4 day or 30 hour working week to start with.

        • logie97 5.2.2.2

          Primary school teachers job sharing is actually a very good idea. Why would you not support it? There are already many instances of this. Shared planning, more opportunity for preparation.

          • Watching 5.2.2.2.1

            Because logie97 the school my kids attended has tried this due to circumstances & it didn’t work.

            However, your comment “shared planning more opportunity for preparation” doesn’t fit into what Karol is proposing. Its not a case of a teacher in class for 3 days and planning/preparation for the other two. Its means the teacher only work 3 days per week – which means you are in the classroom for 3 days, and you still have the same hours (pro-rata) for those planning& preparation tasks.

            The people that were really upset where the kids. I expect it was due to having an excellent teacher who the kids liked and a questionable teacher who even my child refer to as lazy. The kids really did rate the two teachers as equals & made it known. No one ask the kids if they wanted two teachers – because the kids didn’t want it.

            • Watching 5.2.2.2.1.1

              left out a not in one sentence which changed the context – should have read

              The kids really did not rate the two teachers as equals & made it known.

              • logie97

                Nope. As with the good teachers that I know, most planning and preparation happens in their own time (unpaid) – just good professionals. Your one example does not prove the rule …

            • karol 5.2.2.2.1.2

              There are ways to work with jobs that require the same person working more than 3 /4 days a week, while reducing their average number of hours/days per year. For instance, with teachers if there is a very good educational argument for them being in primary schools 5 days a week in term time, they could possibly look at ways of ensuring they don’t have to do any work at all during the term holidays.

            • PapaMike 5.2.2.2.1.3

              How did the two for the price of one teacher get paid – each by the hours ?

          • Meg 5.2.2.2.2

            Far too disruptive for the kids.

            • logie97 5.2.2.2.2.1

              … and your evidence Meg?

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                I think the main problem with the proposal is that there are so many things which would have to happen first, which might in themselves go a long way to solving the problem.

                As Karol has already noted, wages would have to increase. Also, in 2006, “a total of 415,641 people reported working 50 or more hours each week, with this representing 22.68% of the workforce and 29.08% of full-time workers.” Source DoL.

                If those people worked five hours less per week there’s 50,000 full time jobs right there.

    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 5.3

      @ Polish Pride

      I think changing the working hours – if it is lowering the working week – is a good idea.

      This would assist more people to have jobs and would also reduce stress related problems with those who have work.

      It would require the minimum wage going up.

      I do not know why this hasn’t been seriously considered already – other countries have done it.

  6. greywarbler 6

    There was a good coverage in Morning Report of matters in Oz that are a concern and some good questioning of Key who gave I thought a straight answer that he doesn’t think he’ll achieve much on the supermarket issue.

    I note that the excuse now is that Oz is suffering a downturn in their flow of gold coins, and there seems little energy going to be put into demanding the citizen rights that have been removed, since 2001, and never revised. And won’t be until pigs fly.

    • Rosie 6.1

      Hi Warbly. I haven’t had a chance to digest your previous article on Aussie supermarkets throwing a hissy over NZ produced goods, except to say that I agree with the Aussie Bully essence of the article.

      We shouldn’t bother to expect any trade fairness from the Australians. Remember they refused to import our apples for decades? They have always been proactive with “Buy Australian Made” yet don’t respect our efforts to promote our own products. Check out the country of origin for a lot of the “Home Brand” items in Countdown – they are Australian! They even send us Australian salmon for gawd’s sake. How unnecessary is that!?

      Needless to say I shop at Foodstuff”s store because they are NZ owned and support more local producers I also want my money to stay onshore.

      One of the draw backs to supporting Foodstuff’s is they are notoriously difficult to unionise where as Union membership is more the “norm” in Australia therefore they don’t adopt union busting techniques in their stores here where as I have heard first hand from New World and Pak N save staff how they have been actively discouraged by the boss from joining a Union. Hence Countdown staff have better wages and conditions (from the horses mouth).

      Many years ago I worked for an Australian company and had to go over to head office in Melbourne every now and then. I can tell you the attitude they had towards the NZ market was very arrogant. They couldn’t care less how our market for our product worked, who the customer base was etc, they just wanted to force their way of doing things on to us. They constantly joked about how small and backwards we are but it wasn’t really a joke.

      Get this: They were so unaware of NZ that I recall one day the receptionist phoned me to say the next day was a public holiday in Aus so I shouldn’t try to contact them. The public holiday was ANZAC day. I had to explain to this person what the NZ in ANZAC stood for, and no I wouldn’t be working either. Ok, that was an extreme example of ignorance but I am trying to demonstrate how little we mean to them, in a business sense. Other NZer’s, hopefully will have worked for more progressively minded trans Tasman operators.

      JK won’t make any headway with Tony Abbott. Firstly Tone’s won’t be listening and second, JK struggles to stand up for NZ. He has no connection with the place. Look how easily he sold us out to Murica! (Hollywood, GCSB + TICS Act’s, TPPA, Anadarko etc)

      • phillip ure 6.1.1

        there is only one reason to go to countdown..

        ..their budget baked beans are the best on the market..

        ..and by a country-mile..

        ..pshaw! to yr watties etc..

        ..countdown budget is the best baked-bean gloop..

        phillip ure..

        • Ron 6.1.1.1

          I used to think that and certainly there price is very competitive at something like 79 cents compared with $1.29+ for Watties
          But after using the cheaper version for many years I recently went back to Watties. I think their tomatoe sauce is preferable. Everyones taste is different I guess I am begrudgingly paying the higher price for Watties which is owned by Heinz these days isn’t it.

          there is only one reason to go to countdown..

          ..their budget baked beans are the best on the market..

          • greywarbler 6.1.1.1.1

            Ron
            I think that about the b.beans and spahetti too. Don’t like the flavour of the other’s tomato sauce. I hope that is due to the fact that watties is better quality not that it’s some artificial flavour they put in. Oak’s are always cheaper but don’t taste as good, so cheapest isn’t always best is my motto.

            It’s interesting what gets discussed on this blog. From A to Z and a half. Never a dull moment.

            • phillip ure 6.1.1.1.1.1

              the cd bbb’s hang together better on the toast..

              ..(they probably use ground up calves’ nipples..or the like..as a (secret-squirrel) coagulant..)

              ..and i’ll grant you watties @ number 2..

              ..and ‘oak’..?..blech…!..never..!..

              ..philip ure

            • The Pink Postman 6.1.1.1.1.2

              Baked beans out of a tin acceptable ,but spaghetti out of a tin is an insult to this gift from Italy . Home cooked with a selection of cheeses. Wonderful!!

      • greywarbler 6.1.2

        Rosie
        Thanks. Good thoughts. It sounds as if mine are well-based.

        What are we doing about Oz? There is a feeling of helplessness, oh dear we can’t do anything. I wonder if there should be A Committee set up with all ‘players’ relating to business and employment going into the future, and work out a new path for getting work and business moving IN this country. No old-mates, retired plodding RWNJ on his/her/their own trajectories.

        And what about reviewing what we offer Australians here? And introducing a visa system so that the government could get all that travel to Australia to pay something to us, and included in that would be an insurance cost providing emergency transport, and aid to the needy allowance so that people didn’t get stranded and turned into beggars by the Australian authorities and the free market economy. It doesn’t do anything for our image over there to have us forming a large part of the underclass and always begging for help (that any modern, principled, friendly country in union with us would provide). We need to have pride in ourselves in ways that are real, not just related to some sports achievements, or occasional peaks of success and endeavour.

        And what can we do here to retaliate and show our displeasure, dismay, disdain and other dissing words to the smug, bloated mosquitoes that are the Oz supermarkets here in the Progressive-Woolworths-Countdown roundabout. They are sucking our money out of the country very nicely, while their parent-brother company/ies in Oz stick it to us there.

        How can we give them some reciprocal love? How to put people off trading in their markets here. Money they understand, and bad PR isn’t good for them. Perhaps somebody should make up some punk music about them – punk supermarket should be sunk – countdown now! Remember the Oz fury about how NZ wasn’t able to pay up on everything when Ansett collapsed and we were caught with our pants down trying to pass its vast debt burden. An unlovely image, but one that was very revealing of how thread-like our so-called good relations with Oz actually are. All those jokes they made about us, ya know, they actually meant them! Suckers they thought. Sob.

        I note your comment on Froodstuffs, and I noted at the bottom of my post that they are NZ owned.
        I also have noticed in the articles I was reading that most Foodstuffs stores are franchised and there can be no collective agreement across the brand because of this. However unions should be able to talk to the owners and do a checklist of conditions and set up a template that they can discuss with owners.

        I wondered if unions might publish a league table of good employers annually, with explanations of why they were good. And perhaps they could publish the ones they had the most problems with.
        Also have checklists on what employers can expect from their workers.

        Also they could perhaps make a template of what they would like to see workers receive, in conditions so that workers had some idea of what a reasonable work place should offer as in earlier years. Say, a break for morning and afternoon tea, even a time to sit down and relax with a drink of water and a biscuit, an hour for lunch or just half an hour with the other time for glide time, allowing for late arrival, or early departure if possible – for transport, shopping etc. regular time off.

        • Rosie 6.1.2.1

          Oh dear, out of time as usual! Acknowledgements to phil and Ron re Baked Beans, To karol and Tracey.

          I’d have to stop and think if I were to reply to your first four paragraphs so will jump to a subject I am more familiar with. Yes, I have heard that the resistance to negotiating a national collective agreement is in part due to the nature of the franchise. This is only part of it but certainly their most vocal disagreement. But it doesn’t have to be difficult. A national collective agreement can be negotiated under a “Multi Employer Collective Agreement” or MECA for short.That would cover those conditions you mention above such as breaks.

          Their in house Health & Safety programme demonstrates that multiple stores can work from one document (Although, from witnessing their H&S standards as a supplier and talking to staff their standards leave a lot to be desired!)

          Guess what though? Under Bridges’ Union Busting planned amendments in the E.R.A “employers can refuse to be part of an industry agreement (MECA)” quoted from a pamphlet I have sitting here on my table. There may be more info at http://www.workrights.org.nz

          And:

          “And what can we do here to retaliate and show our displeasure, dismay, disdain and other dissing words to the smug, bloated mosquitoes that are the Oz supermarkets here in the Progressive-Woolworths-Countdown roundabout”

          Boycott them?!?!. I do already! Incidentally the consumer backlash to the Progressive Enterprises lock out of winter 06 really got their attention and they began to realise their arrogance had cost them. The CEO Marty Hamnet ended up getting the sack over his handling of the lock out.

          NZ consumers would have to be on board though and there is always the risk of hurting workers during a boycott. There’s pro’s and cons. Having a proactive pro NZ business government would be an excellent start though.

          • Rosie 6.1.2.1.1

            Furthermore, there is an interesting article about Union membership on stuff of all places. Robert Reid of First Union has this to say about pay rates for Union members at Countdown Vs. Foodstuff’s stores.

            “First has negotiated a collective agreement for employees of Australian-owned Progressive Enterprises which operates Countdown supermarkets in New Zealand, he says.

            Strength in numbers has earned Countdown workers pay rates of “high” $15 an hour to “low” $16 an hour; well above the industry norm according to Reid.

            Staff of non-unionised New Zealand co-operative Foodstuffs earn around the minimum wage of $13.75, Reid says.”

            Foodstuffs North Island HR manager goes on to respond.

            It’s worth a read.

            http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/9696643/Are-unions-a-good-deal-for-workers

        • Ron 6.1.2.2

          Just get used to other countries having a say in what we can sell. Thanks to Australia we are just now getting a foretaste of what New Zealand will be like under TPPA.
          You will soon get used to not being allowed to import recordings or books from Amazon , not purchase items from retailers like Parallel Imports, not buying cheaper medicines via Pharmac, etc etc. The list is endless but we will get used to it.

          • thechangeling 6.1.2.2.1

            It’s ironic I know, but it almost sounds like a neo keynesian system where we are encouraged to become self sufficient to a degree again.
            On the face of it, the aussies protecting their ‘local’ products, sounds like a good idea because we can follow suit and reciprocally ban ‘theirs’ thus promoting local production and consumption.

        • T6C 6.1.2.3

          I wondered if unions might publish a league table of good employers annually, with explanations of why they were good.

          Would be great, but who in the mainstream would publish them?

    • karol 6.2

      I do think Aussie’s charmed economy, sailing through the GFC, is on the way down. Not so much an excuse as a reality. And of course, rather than take more democratic action, the coporates will be as ruthess as they want to maintain their profit margins.. In this case, they are appealing to Aussie chauvinism to get a market edge.

      • greywarbler 6.2.1

        karol
        the coporates will be as ruthess as they want to maintain their profit margins.. In this case, they are appealing to Aussie chauvinism to get a market edge.

        Right on there. Couldn’t express the situation better. Only apparently both large chains are doing it, so where is the strategic, tactical advantage? I guess if one does it, then the other has to also, or be the subject of a shaming, sneering campaign – ‘they don’t care too hoots about Oz’ not like us.

        And we public, would get all emotional about it, and stand around shouting shame and so on, because we do give very limited time to rational thought and understanding. Most of us anyway, especially when we are young. And it doesn’t always catch on as a practice, like eating our greens and keeping slim, even when we get older.

    • Tracey 6.3

      he doesnt blink at the UK putting up brit visa fees for kiwis either… what is ti we get in return for the aussies stance on everything kiwi???/ Don’t ourbanks earn them enough profit to assist thekiwis over there paying taxes?

  7. ianmac 7

    Yesterday there was mention of Vernon Small’s interesting column on the Morality Mandate of Mr Key’s argument and the implications of holding on to the coat tail provision. If you missed it it is online now.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/9689935/Key-and-the-moral-mandate

    • Anne 7.1

      If Key believes in moral mandates the least he could do is put the commission’s suggestions to a referendum and let the people decide on the rules that elect their representatives and their governments.

      That would be far more meaningful than a vote for the colours on a rectangle of material flying atop a flagpole.

      Since we know Key does not bother about the morality of anything very much, it can be assumed there will be no referendum while he is PM. Unless he sees political value including it in this year’s voting papers… knowing that if he wins he’ll be gone before the 2017 election so won’t be affected.

      As for the last sentence… I’ll be even more blunt.

      This debate over a bit of coloured rag on the end of a long stick is a huge con job by Key and co. – a classic diversionary tactic from the issues that count. It doesn’t put food in people’s mouths or a roof over their heads or provide the best education and health services available. IMO, it produces nothing but prejudice and jingoistic nonsense. Look at the USA for proof of that!

      Thanks for the link ianmac. Very good summation by Vernon Small.

      • greywarbler 7.1.1

        Anne
        About ‘the best education and health services available’.
        I would be happy to have ‘good services for all’ aimed to provide the best outcomes possible. Something more humble-sounding, that worked with people to meet their needs plus enhance their lives.

        That would take us out of merely existing with the least that could be provided, to having a fulfilling and enjoyable life.

        • Anne 7.1.1.1

          hi greywarbler

          the best education and health services available.

          I nearly changed that sentence to something with more meaning to it because that parrot, Parata trots it out ad infinitum. I certainly don’t mean her idea of best education parctises etc.

          • greywarbler 7.1.1.1.1

            Anne
            I had a good education and it never did me any harm! A bit of alliteration there I see. Parrota and a bit of dumb rhyming , say, someone should garotte her. Ooh forget that one. Back to the drawing board.

  8. Chooky 8

    Kathryn Ryan on nine- to- noon radionz superb today…..(always liked her)…interviews with economists:

    1. Brian Easton: on the importance of alleviating child poverty in New Zealand….for all other inequality

    2. European/ Italian economist Loretta Napoleoni , who wrote ‘Rogue Economics’ and predicted the last economic meltdown has written a new book :

    ‘ Maonomics: Why Chinese Communists Make Better Capitalists Than We Do’

    Well worth going to replay radio for these interviews if you have missed them

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

    http://lorettanapoleoni.net/

  9. joe90 10

    Today’s misanthropy goes off scale.

    It drips on her head most days, says Champaben, but in the monsoon season it’s worse. In rain, worms multiply. Every day, nonetheless, she gets up and walks to her owners’ house, and there she picks up their excrement with her bare hands or a piece of tin, scrapes it into a basket, puts the basket on her head or shoulders, and carries it to the nearest waste dump. She has no mask, no gloves, and no protection. She is paid a pittance if she is paid at all. She regularly gets dysentery, giardia, brain fever. She does this because a 3,000-year-old social hierarchy says she has to.

    http://blog.longreads.com/post/a-brief-history-of-class-and-waste-in-india/

  10. aerobubble 11

    Adopted kids need to be placed with like. A kid of say christian parents should be placed with a stable christian family. A kid with a mother and father similarly surely with another family with a male and female guardians in a long term stable committed family. Now for sure the best match up possible would mean some same sex couples, in longer term stable committed relationships, would become eligible. But given the large population of mixed couples willing to adopted…
    …but the question does arise, what happens when there is a problem within a same sex couple leading to the adoption of their children? What rights do these kids have to a ‘like’ environment?

  11. Tracey 12

    How many humans work at your average bank and supermarket compared to ten years ago? Huge profit makers both.

    How about those who advocate for workers rights start a campaign to use the human run queues in the banks and supermarkets. No more atms during business hours, no speedy deposits. Stand int he queue and complain about how long the line is when you get to the top… and when they say use atm or speedy deposit or online, tell them straight. I believe in humans and a fair society. i want to deal
    with people… get more staff…

    I stopped using self serve in supermarkets after a post here by someone and as of last Friday stand in queues at the bank.

    You actually slow down your life which aint a bad thing, and chat with the folks int he line.

    • srylands 12.1

      “Huge profit makers both.”

      The average profit margin for supermarkets globally is between 1 and 2% – in the five years post GFC closer to 1%. How is that a “huge” profit?

      Yes we could demand that supermarkets emply more people, reducing New Zealand’s already woeful productivity record and driving up costs and prices.

      How about we emply people to walk in front of cars waving red flags?

      • Tracey 12.1.1

        ” average profit margin for supermarkets globally is between 1 and 2% ”

        I live in NZ, so global averages are irrelevant.

      • fender 12.1.2

        “How about we emply [sic] people to walk in front of cars waving red flags?”

        You have the job srylands, motorways only, forget the flag..

      • Skinny 12.1.3

        So what’s the profit margin here in NZ? I doubt very much it’s 1-2 % even after tricky accounting is take in.

        • Tracey 12.1.3.1

          That’s not relevant to shrillands faux argument.

          • Skinny 12.1.3.1.1

            Thank for your insight Tracy, I am ready to start picketing outside both the supermarket chains. The timing is perfect with Woolworths current attitude. The name Meyers is in there some where typical ‘***’ The supermarket cartel forces the hours of our growers market on a Saturday to the ‘friendly hours’ of 6.30am till 10.30, meaning those that travel to bring produce from out of town have to drag themselves up at 2-3 am. I am going to start a petition calling for the hours to change and fuck the supermarkets objections.

            • Tracey 12.1.3.1.1.1

              Good human!

              A young man I know went to countdown to get a job. He got one as a shelf-picker for the oniline purchasers. ten hour shifts. Only gets asked the day before if he wants to work the next day. minimum wage. No written contract. he’s hung in there but he got selected for the auckland U19 cricket team and needed to go to CHCH for ten days. They told him if he went, there would be no job when he came back as he wouldn’t be available to work.

            • Blue 12.1.3.1.1.2

              What does *** mean ? Something to do with the ethnicity of his name ? Meyers ? Surely you wouldn’t stoop so low?

      • phillip ure 12.1.4

        @ sryland..

        ..1% profit..on average-turnover of..?

        ..and we could/should(?) hire someone .. to walk in front of you..

        ..with a red flag..

        ..eh..?

        ..”warning..!..bullshitter follows..!’

        phillip ure..

    • fender 12.2

      Was reading an interesting article about the Luddite movement , and how their motivation has been warped by efforts to re-write history.

      “The machine wrecking was not wanton or indiscriminate. The Luddites destroyed frames owned by the manufacturers who doled out substandard wages or paid in goods rather than currency. Within the same room, machines were smashed or spared according to the business practices of their owners.”

      • Tracey 12.2.1

        luddites, like anarchists have been deliberately misrepresented by those who seek to keep the under valued and low paid on the treadmill.

    • srylands 12.3

      P.S. Next time you fly Air NZ, refuse to use the kiosk and demand you line up at a check in counter just like the old days. You could also demand to pay the air fares that used to be charged in those good old days.

      • Tracey 12.3.1

        Whereas your ideas…. rationalisation etc have no history of leading to living wages or full employment.

        Neither the banks nor our supermarkets suffered when they used more humans. Shareholders had less profit (as opposed to no profit). Dont you let hu8mans get in the way of your personal ideology to buy loads of stuff with your imaginary high earnings.

    • Tracey 12.4

      “In late August 2006 Progressive Enterprises locked its supermarket distribution centre workers out of their jobs, creating one of the highest profile industrial disputes in New Zealand in recent memory. Progressive Enterprises is 100% owned by Woolworths Australia, a company which reported a profit of $A1.01 billion, a 24.3% increase on the previous year. The then boss of Woolworths Australia, Roger Corbett, had to make do with a salary of $A8.5 million a year, earning more in a day than the average full time checkout operator earns in a year.

      • tinfoilhat 12.4.1

        I think their turnover is around $60 billion a year.

        • Blue 12.4.1.1

          Yes it is. Profits are around 1-2%

        • Murray Olsen 12.4.1.2

          Is profit calculated on turnover? To me, it makes more sense to calculate it on capital invested. For example, if I have $100, buy something each day, and sell it for $101, is my profit 1% (on turnover), or 365% (on investment)?

          • Blue 12.4.1.2.1

            It’s 1% on the cost of that investment. Profit is the return above capital investment.

          • Naki Man 12.4.1.2.2

            You seem to have forgotten about all the other costs involved in running a business.
            The net profit is often a lot less than you might think.

    • Rosie 12.5

      Crap. I lost my comment so will repeat it.

      Went something like this:

      Hi Tracey,

      I have refused to used a self service checkout at the supermarket since their inception a few years ago. When directed to a kiosk I turn them down, and state my reason, for everyone to hear.

      Best time ever was when the owner of the supermarket directed me to the self service check out. I didn’t know she was the owner, at that point in time although I found out later. I said “We have an unemployment problem in NZ, so I would rather keep NZer’s working, so no thanks, I’ll wait for a person”. Everyone within earshot would have heard. The scowl on her face was priceless.

    • BM 13.1

      Where are these cycle lanes going to go?

      • Tracey 13.1.1

        consider reading the link and going from there BM. I know using search engines is easy for you from your past posts.

      • weka 13.1.2

        Do you mean where will they be placed? (as opposed to where the lead to). Everytime a new road is built, put in a cycle lane and if appropriate a walk lane too. Each time a road gets resealed, look at how it can be widened. Everytime town traffic flows are reviewed, make cycling and walking a priority.

        Peak oil prep, AGW mitigation, increased health via exercise and decreased pollution, better safety for all… It’s a no brainer.

        • fisiani 13.1.2.1

          But the Greens will not allow any new roads. Now that really is a no brainer.

          • Tracey 13.1.2.1.1

            the no brainer is you fisiani

          • weka 13.1.2.1.2

            Telling lies again fisiani? Still, glad you realise that the GP will be part of the next govt.

            • fisiani 13.1.2.1.2.1

              I met someone today who said she had half a mind to vote Green. I told her that that was all she needed.
              The Greens have never been in government and hopefully never will be because most people have a mind.

          • phillip ure 13.1.2.1.3

            @..fisani..

            psstt!!….have you heard about the secret green party plan..

            ..to have table-inspectors..

            ..to make sure you eat yr greens..?

            ..quick..!

            ..scurry/scuttle off back to kiwiblogswamp..now..

            ..with this shock/horror!-news..

            ..the denizens will welcome you with assorted grunts/orifice-expectorating ..

            ..as they do..as they do..

            ..phillip ure..

        • BM 13.1.2.2

          Yeah, where are they going to be placed.

          With land at such a premium in Auckland and the car still King I really can’t see where bike lanes are going to go.

          Not that I don’t think it’s a good idea it’s just that I don’t think it’s particularly feasible at the moment.

          • Tiger Mountain 13.1.2.2.1

            Yeah why plan now BM, wait till the last benzine guzzler coughs to a halt and thousands are trapped in the burbs with closed malls, no house hold rain water tanks or community gardens etc. Instant cycle ways, just veer around all the dead motor vehicles.

          • lprent 13.1.2.2.2

            Removing on street parking for main drags will pretty much add 50% more area to most roads.A!so removes the main traffic flow impedement. Cars pulling into, out of,and above all waiting for others to pull out of slow traffic flows immensely in Auckland

  12. karol 14

    Interesting Op Ed in the NZ Herald – but a pity the author doesn’t take the whole idea that we don’t actually have a “meritocracy” to its ultimate conclusion. She still advocates for the top tiers of the business world. Mind you, it took her long enough to understand the evidence before her eyes – the business world is not a meritocracy.

    What would it take for her to look at the whole system and see how impacts on those with less power and money? Especially, as she is loking at gender imabalances, how it impacts on women with less power. Making the top tiers of the business world more diverse in a range of ways, will not fix a damaging system.

    I do like what she says about the Metiria Turei wardrobe beat-up though:

    When one looks at the line-up of political leaders contesting this year’s election, one sees lots of white males, a few brown males, and one woman, Metiria Turei, who may be there under some sort of “quota”, but who brings something entirely different to the table – not least her implacable manner as she is subjected to the nasty taunts of the National Party’s Margaret Thatcher acolytes.

    • Tracey 14.1

      It’s incredible how many continue to look to those who caused the problems for a solution?

    • greywarbler 14.2

      ‘Margaret Thatcher’ acolytes. Interesting the type of woman that feminist agitation for better opportunities brings out. The NACTs, Margaret T lookalikes with that complacent superiority one gets from having done very well for a girl, and the intelligent, self-actualised woman who is well organised and integrated into the community.

  13. SHG (not Colonial Viper) 15

    Australia has agreed to extend access to student loans for the children of long-term Kiwi expats.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9696401/Australia-agrees-student-loan-deal-for-Kiwi-expats-kids

    Nice to see that John Key has been able to reverse one of the most odious restrictions of the deal signed by Helen Clark in 2001.

    • fender 15.1

      RNZ are reporting that student loans will be granted “in some circumstances”.

      Devil. Detail. etc.

    • Tracey 15.2

      wow and before he even met with Abbot. Whodathunkit

    • srylands 15.3

      “Nice to see that John Key has been able to reverse one of the most odious restrictions of the deal signed by Helen Clark in 2001.”

      You do understand what the alternative was to that 2001 deal, don’t you?

    • Murray Olsen 15.4

      Getting your kids locked into a privatised system of loans in an economy about to crash is hardly a great deal anyway. It just delivers more customers to the banks, tied hand and foot.

  14. joe90 16

    Wall street, where nobody ever goes to gaol.

    JPMorgan Chase & Co agreed to pay $614 million to the U.S. government and admitted to defrauding federal agencies, Reuters reports.

    As part of the settlement JPMorgan Chase admitted it defrauded federal agencies for over a decade by approving thousands of insured loans that were not eligible for insurance by the Federal Housing Administration and the Department of Veteran Affairs. When the unqualified loans failed both the FHA and VA incurred substantial losses.

    http://consumerist.com/2014/02/05/jpmorgan-chase-to-pay-614m-in-settlement-for-defrauding-federal-agencies/

  15. JK 17

    Hey – did you know you could vote for the best blog site by going to this link :

    http://techday.com/webawards/

  16. greywarbler 18

    Red Logix said this on the Waldegrave thread but I have borrowed
    it because I thought it was good in isolation. He is talking about our tendency to keep on following the life pattern that we know and see around us. Yet —

    Almost all behaviour (as distinct from our motivations) is a social construct and is a result of the circumstances we construct and tolerate. Change these circumstances and people’s behaviour will adapt with an extraordinary flexibility.

    Jared Diamond (who I keep on referencing) used the example in his book Collapse. How Societies choose to Succeed or Fail used the example of an isolated group on a tiny, remote Eastern Pacific atolls who faced with environmental collapse chose to ban the raising and eating of pigs. This was a very big and difficult decision for them to make – but enabled them to survive an otherwise almost certain collapse.

    Napoleon Hill who wrote books on thinking patterns –
    “What ever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.”

    And Confucius was no slug on wise advice – (fromThinkExist.com)

    “By three methods we may learn wisdom: first, by reflection, which is noblest; second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third, by experience, which is the most bitter.”

    Confucius quotes (China’s most famous teacher, philosopher, and political theorist, 551-479 BC)

    • MrSmith 18.1

      so what’s your point? apart from stroking Reds Ego.

      • greywarbler 18.1.1

        Mr Smith
        I think that it is wise to have some philosophical thoughts about standards of behaviour and how to strive to maintain them in politics, which we are all interested in. So the recorded wisdom of others can remind us of how to do this.

        I see you’re confused. We don’t think about such things very often. It’s about whether someone is being scammed, or hotel bills, or changing partners, or making deals, or getting too much money – usually. Not much quiet higher thought and commitment to a greater good in the former list.

        • MrSmith 18.1.1.1

          Fare enough Greywabler, how about we start another Religion then, before the present one’s fall apart.

          Wouldn’t it be better if we just stuck to the facts!

      • greywarbler 18.1.2

        Mr Smith
        I think that it is wise to have some philosophical thoughts about standards of behaviour and practices of society and politics. We would like to make changes in the methods we have used for decades so how do we go about this effectively. We are all interested in politics, and we need to think what we and our politicians are doing and if we could do better. The recorded wisdom of others can remind us of how to do this.

        I see you’re confused. We don’t think about such things very often. It’s about whether someone is being scammed, or hotel bills, or changing partners, or making deals, or getting too much money – usually. Not much quiet higher thought and commitment to a greater good in the former list.

  17. joe90 19

    oops

    Attendees of these summits are warned that the seminars, where the Kochs and their allies hatch strategies for electing Republicans and advancing conservative initiatives on the state and national levels, are strictly confidential; they are cautioned to keep a close eye on their meeting notes and materials. But last week, following the Kochs’ first donor gathering of 2014, one attendee left behind a sensitive document at the Renaissance Esmeralda resort outside of Palm Springs, California, where the Kochs and their comrades had spent three days focused on winning the 2014 midterm elections and more.

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/02/koch-brothers-palm-springs-donor-list

  18. greywarbler 20

    Another Confucius quote that we can make last all 2014 or till the election, whichever comes first.

    Do not be desirous of having things done quickly. Do not look at small advantages.
    Desire to have things done quickly prevents their being done thoroughly.
    Looking at small advantages prevents great affairs from being accomplished

  19. greywarbler 21

    So Abbott is giving youngsters the opportunity of student allowance after ten years residence. What about a student travel pass? Can that be slipped under the door of the policy room? And we owe it all to Julia Gillard or perhaps thingy who snatched Labour from the jaws of victory or not, who knows?

    So Abbott bravely and to show good faith with NZ offers a toffee, quite good, just partly unwrapped, to Key. That is all I need says Key just something to keep the punters quiet. Nudge, nudge.

    We can face up to having all the other things later in exchange for reducing the free flow of NZs to Oz, Jokeyhen might have said. Then citizenship after a working period of 10 years too. You can set a quota for entrants as you do for other refugees, and we will introduce a visa, and limitations that echo yours. Very practical. And we will give Kiwibank a cash injection so that it can hold up the NZ bank trading in a foreign-owned banking system more effectively. All good positive moves Tony, we have your visionary offer to thank for this.

    • Rodel 21.1

      Just heard Quax interviewed (eaten) by Mary Wilson. on his continuing hissy fit about the Mayor.
      She made him sound like a blithering wish-wash. Is he that bad?
      She’s so professional.

  20. Will@Welly 22

    Steven Joyce must be back at work today, unless Iprent has barred “Meg”.

  21. Rodel 23

    Just heard Quax interviewed (eaten) by Mary Wilson. on his continuing hissy fit about the Mayor.
    She made him sound like a blithering wish-wash. Is he that bad?
    She’s so professional.

  22. Chris Hedges says Climate Change is an Emergency
    Begins by pointing to the destruction of indigenous historically.
    Predicts retreat into forms of magical thinking.
    Society is collapsing already, neo-liberalism is magical thinking!

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