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Open mike 08/06/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, June 8th, 2019 - 172 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

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 …

172 comments on “Open mike 08/06/2019”

  1. Robert Guyton 1

    Log-in’s all over the park, mods. Takes me three attempts, then reverts spontaneously to not logged in.

  2. Robert Guyton 2


    "the early Celtic Christian monks and mystics who set out alone in small, flimsy boats, seeking solitude, nature, and God on the most remote islands of Britain.

    "On island after island," she writes in A Book of Silence, "the more isolated and far-flung the better — on St. Kilda, on the Farnes, on the Shiants, throughout the Hebrides and the northern islands, off the coast of Ireland, around Iceland and possibly even North America — the traces of hermits can be found."

    I wonder what "traces of hermits" look like?

    I first thought, fewmets!

    • vto 2.1

      Dunno Robert, but I do know that archaeology is a young science and that the surface has literally hardly been scratched yet….

      There is a huge amount more to learn about our past and the extent of exploration and discovery that humans undertook…

      • Robert Guyton 2.1.1

        I've been listening to Terrence McKenna describing the intricacies and importance of the I Ching. That's fascinating stuff:

    • WeTheBleeple 2.2


      The hermit is almost a mythical figure in lore.

      There's an awesome coffee table book 'Men Who Live Alone' but I've not seen a copy for decades. Bunch of locals, B&W photography and stories in their words. Stunning piece of work. War heroes, alcoholics, madmen, artists.

      Can't get a fix on it on google, might get lucky in a Library, or hopefully one of our oldies has it and can give us the Author, publisher.

      Traces of Hermits? Solitary skeletons. Few implements per small dwelling. Single bed space type thing. When you are building your own shelter there is no reason to overbuild. No neighbors or potential partners to impress. No signs of children (toys, skeletons, art). No communal space…

      Take a bit of thinking about but archaeologists are clever types, at least the ones I've met.


    • WeTheBleeple 2.3

      Also, on living alone.

      The more you are alone the more you are convinced you are right. Feedback is a necessary part of the human progression of thought.

      The internet's algorithms that put us alone, but within echo chambers of those sharing our delusions, are a massive regression of human evolution removing the requisite feedback from thought processing – thus enabling extremity.


      • Robert Guyton 2.3.1

        Get out into the garden, WTB, and talk to the trees. Human to human discourse is as you say, WTB, but there are other conversations to be had; it's not as though other beings aren't talking to us, it's more a case of us having grown deaf to their voices 🙂

        • WeTheBleeple

          Don't patronise me with spiritual mumbo jumbo please. 

          I study communication of plants/insects/microbes. We were always deaf to their 'voices' only now beginning to understand the means by which they interact.

          Got a mate doing a PhD trying to interpret birds… Hard task.

          • WeTheBleeple

            Sorry I was a bit harsh. I have little tolerance for this type of stuff met many people of many belief systems and there are those who live spiritual lives and those who use it as a mask or moral high ground to denigrate/disrupt others living.

            We certainly need a better 'religion' than capitalism, so I do understand your attempts to introduce new ways of thinking/being to the TS readership.

            A persons spiritual journey is their own. I've not read a single man-made interpretation of the spiritual realm that comes close to sensible.

            Maybe we cannot put our finger on that which we cannot put our finger on, as it is a requisite property of the non-physical world.

          • Robert Guyton

            I'm sure I didn't and I don't believe it is, but if you feel I did and it was, I'm sorry.

            I'm studying communication between trees and forests and other beings; insects, mammals, including humans. From what I read, it's a wide and fascinating field of study. Birds-song, it's purpose and meaning along with it's relevance to humans, is also a study I'm involved in making, albeit at the level of an amateur, though there's some great material to be read and heard out there. I'd be interested to read your mate's PHD when it's finished.

            • WeTheBleeple

              I can't wait for the PhD he's the brightest young man I knew at Uni. Aced two degrees at once…

              I have a few thoughts around bird communication but didn't want to distract him from his work. I am SOOO curious.

              He's in Yellowstone for much of the work, lucky for some aye.

              I was being overly-sensitive. No worries you know I struggle. 

              A spore of the fungus Botrytis cinerea can sense it sits atop a fruit and can then germinate and, using vacuum pressure, force a 'peg' into the side of the cell. Then the fungi releases a couple of assassins to take out the cells sentries, and a hacker to subvert the cells defense systems. The cell begins to attack itself. The fungi sends in armored vehicles that do bombing runs with reactive oxygen species to further force plant response until the cell is weakened by its own attacks and ultimately gives up the cell, allowing it to shut down and die. The dead cell is the actual goal of the fungi, it feeds the fungi, replenishing supplies for further attack. 

          • bewildered

            Hey WTB you need to chill,  also its not usually not a winning communication strategy   to keep telling people  how smart you are or you hang around  with smart people as if smartness rubs off or like  Likewise to belittle one moment and apologise the next as a regular occurrence This tends to be a real credibility killer

            • WeTheBleeple

              You have only directed judgement and smartass shite at me for some time. You have no credibility to me whatsoever, so fuck off.

              And I’m not going to stop apologising if I think I’m wrong.

              • Bewildered

                Wow over reaction, less emotion snow flake

                My point is if you keep attacking then apologising it lacks integrity , not that apologising per see is wrong Just an opinion so dont sweat it champ

            • patricia bremner

              Bewildered ,  Sadly you offer nothing of sustenance for the soul,  seldom do you offer anything constructive or uplifting.

          • Robert Guyton

            Nature and I are two.

            Woody Allen.

    • Macro 2.4

      Oh! You missed out Gigha! and Iona.

      The whole of the west coast of Scotland is littered with such sites. Gigha is referred to by it's inhabitants as the "Isle of the gods", this was the stopping off place for the monks travelling from Ireland northward, and had a small settlement, part of which is still standing in the local graveyard. The Island itself is around 7 miles long, and about a mile wide. It was, at one stage, owned by the Horlicks of the malted milk drink "fame". Now it is under local inhabitants control under a trust, A law change about 20 years ago enabled islanders to take over control of their island homes where previously they had been tenants. Gigha was the first of the Islands to proceed with such a huge undertaking. It obviously needed financing and the Islanders came up with a novel and sustainable solution. They raised money for the purchase of three wind turbines for generating electricity to supply to the UK National grid. These wind turbines are affectionately known as the "Dancing Ladies". They have been so successful that they recently added a 4th and larger turbine to the mix.


      My great grandparents lived on Gigha and only spoke the Gaelic. 

      Do you know the song "Westering Home"? It was composed by the local minister on Gigha around 1900.

      Iona was the centre for early Christianity in Britain, and the place where St Columbus set up residence. The small buildings the monks built there are still there and the resident brindled cat (whose ancestor mewed thrice in the "Scottish Play") is a distant relation of my owner – so she informs me. 😼


      • Robert Guyton 2.4.1

        You might enjoy this, Macro:

        • Macro

          Oh Yes! And I know my family (including the "owner" of the house) will too!

        • RedLogix

          Very nice, I want to see all of this.

          And right in the trailer with the characters of Brendon and Ashley is exactly the kind of masculine/feminine symbolism I was talking about before. 

  3. Robert Guyton 3


    "Celtic thought contributes magnificently to a philosophy of compassion, deriving from its sense that everything belongs in one diverse, living unity. On an ontological level, the exercise of compassion is the transfiguration of dualism: the separation of matter and spirit, masculine and feminine, body and soul, human and divine, person and animal, and person and element. The beauty of the Celtic tradition was that it managed to think and articulate all of these presences together in a profound, intimate unity. So, if compassion is a praxis which tries to bring that unity into explicit activity and presentation, then Celtic philosophy of unity contributes strongly to compassion."

    • ianmac 3.1

      I read of the Celtic legal system which concentrated on forgiveness and compensation in the 200-500 AD. Then the spread of Catholicism brought punishment and guilt and imprisonment and torture. Women had had an equal place in the society but that was then eroded.

      • Robert Guyton 3.1.1

        That's really interesting, ianmac. There's a lot to be said for the idea that we are presently, again, under the influence of our base primate hierarchical male-dominant structure that is causing us to destroy ourselves and our fellow travellers through space, yet at times we were operating differently, with feminized society, Goddess influenced, love and compassion driven communities which, if still operating, would see us all living without wrecking the show. Your reference to the Celtic legal system sounds like this, although the one's I'm referring to are pre-historic.

        • vto

          "male-dominant structure that is causing us to destroy ourselves "

          Thats a big call Robert, do you have any evidence for that?

          • Robert Guyton

            It's all around us, vto; competition, top-down dominance, bullying across the board, thuggish sports, the nuclear family structure just for starters.

            • RedLogix

              competition, top-down dominance, bullying across the board, thuggish sports, the nuclear family structure just for starters.

              It's tricky untangling the symbolic from the literal on this. In a symbolic sense order and hierarchy are allocated to the masculine gender, while it's opposite chaos and nature are considered feminine. Thus a society which has become excessively ordered and regimented can be thought of as 'male dominated', while the complete absence of social order in the natural world is symbolically couched in feminine terms, eg 'Mother Nature'.

              Yet in literal terms there isn't a lot of difference between the sexes. Both men and women compete, will act out dominance games, bully (indeed women are arguably more prone to bullying than men) and invest heavily in the nuclear family.

              I've long argued here that while men are somewhat more physically aggressive than women on average, women tend to be more emotionally manipulative and abusive. The differences are not huge, but on the whole both sexes are equally capable of aggression. To label this a 'male' problem is deeply misleading and unhelpful.

              • Robert Guyton

                RedLogix – I think you are assessing the genders from within the matrix of the primate state I described. At the times when humans/hominids were outside of the matrix, all changed and what I described was the state of affairs, imo. It may be true, nowadays, that "there isn't a lot of difference between the sexes", but that not what I was talking about; I'm referring to primate behaviour .v. Goddess-people behaviour.

                • RedLogix

                  I'm referring to primate behaviour .v. Goddess-people behaviour.

                  To be honest I went through a similar line of thinking myself a while back and I acknowledge the appeal of this idea. Sadly my reading in the past decade or so just doesn't support it. Human behaviour prior to recorded history starts about 10,000 years ago is more reliably understood using biology, neurology, and evolutionary psychology tools, and none of this supports the notion of  'female dominated goddess cultures' utopias.

                  I'm going to link to this fascinating talk by Robert Sapolsky one of the foremost thinkers in this field. At over an hour long I don't expect anyone to watch it now, but it does offer a glimpse of how complex our relationship with 'primate' behaviour really is:

                  • Robert Guyton

                    When you passed through that "similar line of thinking a while back", RedLogix, did you land for a moment on the Terrence McKenna description of the "stoned ape" and the communities they enjoyed; psilocybin-lively and stimulated groups with better visual acuity, higher libido and better hunting skills than their peers, thriving in a non-pairing breeding situation where male dominance was redundant, connections with the numinous were regular and life was good? 

                    Woody Allen wouldn't have been comfortable there.

                    • RedLogix

                      I don't have a dogmatic response to this; human history is way more complex than we even begin to suspect and even what we have discovered in the past few decades just scratches the surface. 

                      McKenna is not the only one to have pointed to the potential role psychedelics may have had in human evolution. Even Peterson has spoken on the topic a few times, and there is a flourishing community of people out there experimenting with micro-dosing and similar. I recall commenting a month back on the potential they may have in treating trauma, dementia and other brain injuries. But whether they are causally linked to more peaceful less aggressive, less ego driven societies is not clear at all. 

                      The 'Garden of Eden' mythology points to how old this idea is, that in our evolutionary history we existed in a paradise much closer to our primate condition. But a condition subject to nature not knowledge.

                      Broadly speaking the past 10,000 odd years has been a period of evolution characterised by our increasing ability to manipulate knowledge and build fabulously complex abstractions from it. eg quantum mechanics. We may well share a great deal in common with our primate cousins, but none of them have even remotely achieved this level of intellectual capacity. 

                      What I do accept is that this process has necessarily forced us into a narrowing of our potential. In order to achieve excellence in one thing, we have had to sacrifice other capacities. Whatever we were 10,000 years ago, we are not the same creature that types on the internet.

                      I'm not trying to discredit what you are saying Robert, it has a validity. But it's wrong to frame it up as a female good vs male bad confrontation.  There is a lot more nuance and symbolism to it than this.

                    • Robert Guyton

                      I don't think I framed the ideas, "female good vs male bad' did I?

                      I assigned the present situation we "civilised" humans are experiencing as "base primate hierarchical male-dominant structure" and my wished-for state as " feminized society, Goddess influenced, love and compassion driven communities"

                      Do those descriptions equate with "female good, vs male bad" do you think?

                    • RedLogix

                      Well yes that's exactly how I read it. If you mean differently then you might want to communicate it better.

              • WeTheBleeple

                It is a patriarchy we live in still. Things are changing slowly but we certainly need more feminine influence to lend balance.

                Just look at how the right wing took to Jacinda, her sex was anathema. What she wore, that she's attractive, her reproductive abilities… How dare a woman get power!

                Old boys clubs everywhere in all strata of society. Male dominated councils, churches, government, corporations, clubs, gangs, boards…

                As I said, times are changing, but the Patriarchy has been taking humankind downhill for some time now.

                38% female MP's. Go NZ!

            • vto

              Thanks Robert, but that wasn't quite my question… "male-dominant structure that is causing us to destroy ourselves"

              What is the evidence that it is the 'maleness' that is causing the destruction?

              Sure, there is a heap that is correlative, and many people always jump on that to claim causation. But as we all know from Issues101, correlation is not causation.

              What is the evidence that it is the maleness that is causing it? I would have thought it is the inevitable 'advancement' of 'civilisation' that is causing it. And every society, male or female-dominant, has been on that path such as Maori for example, which pre-euro showed plenty of signs of going down the same path.

              • solkta

                as Maori for example, which pre-euro showed plenty of signs of going down the same path

                What signs are these?

                They had the concept of kaitiakitanga

                They had the whakatauki:

                Rite ki te Moa, ka ngaro / pēra ki te Pouakai, ka ngaro — (Just like the moa/pouakai, it will be lost)

                Moa extinction and whakataukī offer ecological, social, linguistic knowledge – Dr Priscilla Wehi

                The whakataukī also show that Māori learned from the moa's extinction, Dr Wehi says.

                "You can think about it as an ecological nuclear bomb – the moa was that important, its extinction had a huge impact.

                "We see Māori really responding and talking about this extinction event and we see by the time Europeans arrived … there are a whole lot of environmental management techniques that have been put into place as a response to that kind of thing."

                "You can see that now – in the way that Rakiura Māori manage the tītī (muttonbird) harvest, for example, there are lots and lots of different ways that they manage that harvest to make sure there are chicks for future generations.


                • vto

                  population expansion, conflict, species extinction, environmental degradation, technological advancement

                  • solkta

                    species extinction,

                    So when you have actually read the links i gave you then have another go. You are just choosing to be an ignoramus.


                    • vto

                      Yeah thanks solkta, I have read ample. Species extinction happened and was happening. Like it is today despite recognition and action against in the same way

                    • solkta

                      Yeh good onya. Enjoy your tiny planet.

        • marty mars

          Yep – it was the same non gender hierarchy for Māori – all changed when Christians turned up, at the forefront of colonisation, with their concept of sin and male dominance. 

          Still the usual mens liberation army recruiters will say their sob stories of how they are the real victims. Pity some men cannot, for the LIFE of them, front up and take responsibility – they snigger as they weaken even more.

          • vto

            I am glad that you reference that to "Christians" marty mars and not men. There, I think, lie most of your targets. Shows good and proper thinking and less knee and jerk.


            • marty mars

              you didn't really read it did you.
              The second paragraph directly relates to your style of men’s defence.

              • vto

                There was no "men's defence", there was a call for evidence for the claim that men have caused the world's destruction.

                Got any?

                edit: unrelated, but your second paragraph is typical mm personal rhetoric and of no use

  4. WeTheBleeple 4

    "We want the Police to stop locking us up, it's really that simple"



    The Hill.

    A boy with some weed was put in a cell

    In a place filled with misshapen men

    He went from that cage adorned with new rage

    And a play that might put paid to them


    And so it goes on, these layers of wrongs

    In a system outside of the heart

    Run by the bastards that call themselves masters

    Who dabble in death and dark arts


    Through the gaps in the bars were no fine motes of dust

    Capturing light in the gloom

    But a grim gallows pole where they hung men of old

    And the walls overshadowing doom


    In the line for a meal shuffling cold toes to heel

    shines a light as it bounces from knife

    and the screams and the blood and the thundering thugs

    and the banshees that cry in the night.

  5. marty mars 5

    t.rump the brainbox – this is pretty poor when you consider the state of the planet and the thinking needed from here – sorta the opposite of the non-thinking of the don and the regurgitation of rubbish.

    In a tweet, apparently commenting on his own administration’s space policy, the president said: “For all of the money we are spending, NASA should NOT be talking about going to the Moon – We did that 50 years ago.”

    He added: “They should be focused on the much bigger things we are doing, including Mars (of which the Moon is a part), Defense and Science!”

    … Irrespective of whether the moon is part of Mars (it isn’t), Trump’s announcement was doubly surprising given his previous enthusiasm for a moon trip. His criticism of Nasa for “talking about going to the moon” came just three weeks after Trump championed the idea of a lunar visit. 

    … but either way it soon emerged that Trump’s moon reversal may have been provoked by the Fox Business tv channel.​ One hour before the president offered his take on the moon’s origin and his criticism of Nasa, Fox guest Neil Cavuto had expressed scepticism over a moon trip.

    Cavuto reportedly told the TV cable network that Nasa is “refocusing on the moon, the next sort of quest, if you will, but didn’t we do this moon thing quite a few decades ago?”


    • WeTheBleeple 5.1

      Sounds like he just retweets sound bytes that catch his ear and that is what constitutes his thinking.

      America will take a long time and a herculean effort to get any respect post-Trump.

      Fear is not respect.

      • Macro 5.1.1

        Regrettably that is his sole mode of "thinking". I fear he really is in early stages of dementia. He regularly will say the complete opposite of what he uttered only an hour previously. It is obvious that he has no understanding of what the outcomes of his decisions might be. Added to that is his complete lack of self awareness, and his overwhelming hubris. When added to his underlying principle motivation of greed, he is not only a danger to the US, but a threat to us all.

        The saddest thing is however that the only person who could remove him from office , Myrtle McTurtle, is the most duplicitous person on the planet! Unlike Agent Orange he is in complete control of his faculties and understands completely what he is doing – and that is to keep this buffoon in office, as long as he can, so that he can feather his own (and his wife's) nest.


        • WeTheBleeple

          Yeah what do these people care about destroying any shred of credibility a country ever had. The fact the country is not filling the streets and shutting the place down (ironically the government is shutting itself down) lends little sympathy for the rest of them except, living under thumb it often pays to keep your head down (our teachers a classic example of this).

          Post-Trump America will carry shame and guilt for a long time. And rightly so.

          If they cannot now see they are led by murderers bullies liars and thieves it is because they don't want to see. The lie is the narrative.

          White supremacies dying gasps. Cornered cowards stealing the silver before they run and hide. I hope they all get dragged out of the holes they'll hide in.

  6. francesca 6


    You were interested in updates on Assange 


    Assange's father was due to visit, had made a double booking, but was turned away because Assange had to be seen urgently by the prison doctor

    And here RT has a video of Assange in Belmarsh , obviously out of date.Although he's thin, he's freely interacting with other prisoners, and seems ok.No verification of the video,how it was made, when it was made….the date stamp is clearly wrong..and how it was got out.


    • RedLogix 6.1

      Interesting note on the Iceland incident:

      Jonasson said it was only when a 'planeload' of FBI agents arrived in August that he realized the true reason for their visit. 

      The former minister claims the FBI was seeking Iceland's 'cooperation in what I understood as an operation set up to frame Julian Assange and WikiLeaks'. 


      This is evidence that the FBI were indeed seeking ways to actively entrap Wikileaks. While it doesn't speak directly to what may or may not have happened in Sweden, it does confirm American intent to do entrap Assange in whatever manner possible.

      • francesca 6.1.1

        Also extraordinary that the interior minister of tiny Iceland sent the planeload of FBI agents packing.

        With a population less than 350,000, how is it that they can punch so far above their weight?

        Loved the Icelandic film Woman at War

      • McFlock 6.1.2

        Well, his interpretation of their purpose was to entrap wikileaks for hacking.


        • RedLogix

          He's been confident enough in his interpretation to go public on it. He's the one who was there, and the Americans aren't talking.

          • McFlock

            Ordinarily that might count for something, but self-professed members of "Team Assange" have been confident enough to go public with utter bullshit ever since his first UK legal team claimed he was being investigated for "sex by surprise".

            So in my view they're as reliable as RT or Fox&Friends.

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Members of 'Team Assange' (including, apparently, former Icelandic minister Jonasson) are, in McFlock's view, as reliable as RT or Fox&Friends.

              "As reliable as RT or Fox&Friends" when it comes to first-hand accounts of events relevant to Assange's behaviour and treatment, or "As reliable as RT or Fox&Friends" period?  Either way, that's a surprisingly blinkered position to take. Apparently, to belong to ‘Team Assange’ marks one as inherently unreliable, in McFlock’s view.

              And yet, if I was to state that anyone belonging to ‘Team anti-Assange’ was, in my view, as reliable as RT or Fox&Friends, I might be roundly criticised as being wildly off base.

              Before becoming a member of the Althing, the Icelandic Parliament, Ögmundur Jónasson was a journalist engaged in trade union politics. In 1988 Mr. Jónasson became the chairman of BSRB, the Federation of state and municipal employees. A Left-Green Movement politician, he has held office as minister for health, minister for justice and human rights and minister for transport, communications and local government. The last two ministries were united to form the Ministry of the Interior at the beginning of 2011 and he became the first Icelandic minister for the interior.


              • McFlock

                Pilger was pretty good in the 1980s and 90s, too.

                But it's a shame that so many Assange supporters outright make shit up. Really hurts the credibility of his team (and that was the phrase from the article, not my invention).

                • Drowsy M. Kram

                  Are you suggesting that because Pilger has, in your opinion, gone off the boil over the last two decades, Jonasson's first hand account (in a 7 Dec. 2016 interview) is unreliable?

                  It's a shame that so many Assange vilifiers outright make shit up – really hurts their credibility.

                  • McFlock

                    What I'm saying is that given the inaccuracy of pronouncements by other prominent people who strongly support Assange, interesting and possible claims from people I don't recall hearing of before require a bit more evidence before I'll bother regarding the claims as anything other than interesting and possible.

                    So the dude was a country's cabinet member once. So was John Banks.

                    BTW, I didn’t make shit up. Sad but true.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      John Banks is an interesting choice; Minister of Police, Minister of Tourism, and Minister of Sport.  I'm not seeing the overlap.  Maybe they're all as bad as each other, but I'm going to go out on a limb here and speculate that Jonasson and Banks hold incompatible views on Assange, and that your views are closer to Banks’.

                      Before becoming a member of the Althing, the Icelandic Parliament, Ögmundur Jónasson was a journalist engaged in trade union politics. In 1988 Mr. Jónasson became the chairman of BSRB, the Federation of state and municipal employees. A Left-Green Movement politician, he has held office as minister for health, minister for justice and human rights and minister for transport, communications and local government. The last two ministries were united to form the Ministry of the Interior at the beginning of 2011 and he became the first Icelandic minister for the interior.

                    • McFlock

                      So ex-politicians can lie or misinterpret things, but not if they support Assange? Seems a bit circular: he supports Assange so I should believe his claims in support of Assange.

                      Let me put it this way: he might have had some weight if so many other claims in support of Assange hadn't been complete bullshit.

                    • RedLogix


                      So in essence your strategy is to demand evidence and when it is provided merely assert that it is just made up. Well two can play that game; what evidence do you have that Jonasson is lying? 

                      Is what he claims about the FBI somehow impossible, or implausible even? Is it logical impossible or incommensurate with reality? Has someone else come forward with a contradictory claim on the meeting? Do you have anything other than a smear?

                    • RedLogix


                      So in essence your strategy is to demand evidence and when it is provided merely assert that it is just made up. Well two can play that game; what evidence do you have that Jonasson is lying? 

                      Is what he claims about the FBI somehow impossible, or implausible even? Is it logical impossible or incommensurate with reality? Has someone else come forward with a contradictory claim on the meeting? Do you have anything other than a smear?

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      Why would McF (need to) believe that Jonasson was lying, or had misinterpreted events? Does McF “have anything other than a smear?

                      Interesting questions.

                      To quote a McF comment from a 23 Feb 2019 'Assange discussion':

                      "lol crickets" /open-mike-23-02-2019/#comment-1587514

                      In that discussion, McF asserted that he would walk out of the [Ecuadorian] embassy today if he was in Assange's position.

                    • McFlock

                      I'm not asserting it is just made up.

                      I have no idea whether it is or not, that is the point. It's an interesting statement that might or might not be true, but the source is completely unfamiliar to me other than what is here and in the article. And given the behaviour of his fellow team-mates, the odds are pretty even either way.


        • francesca

          That a tiny country like Iceland can stand up to a major league bully like the US is inspiring

          Thats the point

          And if Jonasson declaring he was pro Assange/Wikileaks puts him out of the credibility range, then you, who are so adamantly and reliably anti Assange are also out of the running

          • Morrissey

            you, who are so adamantly and reliably anti Assange…

            Our friend McFlock should enter this salon, where he’d fit in nicely…..


          • McFlock

            That's not logical, f, unless the folk who think he should have fronted up to Sweden to face the allegations told as many demonstrable and outright lies as "Team Assange".

            • Morrissey

              What lies did "Team Assange" tell?

              • McFlock

                Started with his british lawyer talking about "sex by surprise". Includes the claim that red notices are only for terrorists and serious criminals (nice minimisation there). The deliberate muddying of his status regarding charges. The accusation that it's all an invention by the CIA – categorical unsubstantiated assertions of innocence are as bad as those of guilt.

                Most of what you say, but I accept those might be delusions rather than outright lies.

                • Morrissey

                  You're a notorious smearer, so your "delusion" smears—you use that almost as freely and carelessly as you fire the word "rape" around—carry as much weight as your snickering endorsement of a lightweight contributer's allegation that I was anti-African American and anti-Semitic for daring to criticize Paul Wolfowitz, Norman Schwarzkopf, and Colin Powell.


                  • McFlock

                    dude, take your linkwhoring and rant about me to the ether.

                    Not sure I've ever read your blog, and I can't be bothered starting now – I see enough of your crazy here.

                • francesca

                  And then there are those who talk of Assange "scarpering" from Sweden when he was free to leave, those who insisted that it was Assange prolonging the case, when it turns out the Swedes could just as easily have questioned him in the UK but were strongly advised by the UK not to.

                  That somehow Ecuador frivolously gave political asylum so an alleged rapist could avoid questioning….again Ecuador was open to Assange being questioned in the Embassy, as was Assange.No avoidance except on the part of the Swedish prosecutor(rapped over the knuckles by the Appeal Court too)

                  And your "team " has had nothing to say about the way political asylum was so egregiously violated

                  That has repercussions beyond Assange, just as the US indictments have emboldened the Australian spooks/police? you be the judge ..to violate the protections journalists have up until now enjoyed in the "free" world

                  And members of your "team " have also equated the alleged offense with violent sexual assault. Suzie Dawson is particularly good on this , as are many victims of violent rape.To conflate the two does a huge disservice .

                  Anyway McFlock, silly for us to be so insistent .We are very unlikely to convince each other with this unseemly tit for tat

                  I leave you in peace….and will be quite happy for you to have the last word…

                  • McFlock

                    I disagree with everything in your comment, but I hope your evening treats you well 🙂


    • greywarshark 6.2

      Thanks Francesca.   I found your comment by using the new updated search hooray!   (I am supposed to be just spending a few minutes here before I have to dash out and would otherwise not have seen it.  A search that works is better than chocolates at Christmas.)

  7. Muttonbird 7

    Wow. This is the reality for 110 people at Queenstown's Lakeview Holiday Park including a family of nine.

    But it is no holiday for these people.


    If you can imagine the thousands of empty multi-million dollar properties nearby, this image is a clear sign of what we have become.

    It looks like a concentrated version of America.


    • Muttonbird 7.1

      And another…

      Family of seven living in a tent with two severely disabled children pleads for help


      Time to close the borders?

    • Graeme 7.2

      Here's another report of the Lakeview situation, make what you will of it but there are various realities.  The pitfalls or leasehold, and expiry of said lease, being front and centre


      The default "affordable housing" in Queenstown has always been what is scheduled for demolition and redevelopment this or next cycle.  The Lakeview cabins have been in that category from mid – late 80's but being Council endownment land it's always been knocked back after many development proposals.  It's probably the most valuable site in Queenstown but there are some fishhooks in the tenure and difficult for the Council to realise any value.  Ideally it would have been sold to a hotel developer and the funds put into a huge social housing development on cheaper land.  There's plenty of option for  that sort of build.

      But the rub is that you can build social housing profitably but not run it, or run it profitably but not build it, but not both.  The nightmare is running the thing because of Queenstown's unique social character.  There is a housing trust that does a fantastic job with a shared ownership model and several private worker accomodation facilities but waiting lists are long and selection criteria and conditions are onerous.  The change in tourism focus away from cheap mass market tours will see a few hotels at the bottom of the market move to long term accomodation which will help things a lot.

      The issue is as much demand side as supply, all the demand is from people who have moved here in the last few years (or weeks).  We are as much "over localled" as we are "over touristed".  Current economy is tourism, which is going well from our perspective, just changing.  And building houses to house people to build more houses, which could come a gutsa very soon.

      And then we won't have an accomodation problem for a while.

  8. ianmac 8

    Seems to be genuine/credible Mr Robertson:

    "The secretary of the Treasury came to my office and said there had been 2000 attempts to hack – his word – into the Treasury system. I'm going to take that very seriously. What we learn in hindsight will come through in the [State Services Commission] inquiry.


    • Pat 8.1

      Right from the first statement from Marklouf his antipathy towards National was apparent (and is now being returned in kind)…..the question is why?

    • Jimmy 8.2

      Not sure if Andrew Little has helped the situation with his comments last night to HDPA on One ZB. He's basically said he passed on the info. that there was no hack in a timely manner

      • Psycho Milt 8.2.1

        Given that none of the people involved actually know what they mean when they say "hacked," and that saying "not hacked" is a long way from saying "not a criminal offence,"  the take-home messages are that government officials need to be a lot more careful about their language when they speak to the media, and this possible criminal offence needs to be properly investigated.  Can't imagine Paula Bennett writing any letters demanding the latter, though.  

    • Anne 8.3

      I am in no doubt that is exactly what happened and it showed in Robertson's demeanour after Bridges’ accusation surfaced. He looked nonplussed. Add to that, my understanding is the GCSB head rang Andrew Little after the Treasury secretary reported to Robertson he had called in the police.

      There was no conspiracy on anyone's part – just unfortunate timing and in the case of the Treasury secretary maybe a difference of opinion. He clearly believed what happened constituted a hack, and judging from the wording of the legislation he could be right. Just because it didn't fall into the criteria required for the GCSB to become involved, doesn't mean the attempt to extract figures in advance would not qualify as unlawful.

      The police, as usual, couldn't wait to drop the case. I wonder if it was the same crew who jumped in bright eyed and bushy-tailed when they saw an opportunity to bring down Nicky Hager over "Dirty Politics"?

      • SPC 8.3.1

        It's not surprising that the GCSB head would contact his Minister after concluding there was no hack of government systems. 

        What is interesting are the conflicting reports about the matter at the Herald. He is being portrayed as heroically trying to warn the governement of the "false" account of Makhlouf (as if they knew what he was going to say in his public statement in advance of it …. how, spying on Makhlouf's office or his meerting with Robertson or both?).

        The thing is, the hair width gap in story. Makhlouf acknowledged it was not a hack of government systems that would concern GCSB, but was advised to take it to police (the issue here will be by whom) – presumably as accessing confidential information was still illegal. 

        Apparently the concern of GCSB that it not be called a hack, is because it was National what done it and I for one suspect GCSB knew that and then  – and yet told no Minister about this and yet were concerend they not be blamed by National for police being called in to investiugate a "hack". Concerned enough to leak stuff to the Herald, so National know who their mates are.

        • Anne

          Aha… the squirrels and hares all running for cover as fast as their legs can carry them. I, too suspect Makhlouf may well be the scapegoat in this affair. 

          We can only hope the SSC inquiry gets to the bottom of it in a timely manner before innocent individuals get cauterized for simply being who they are, or find themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time.

          In the meantime the real perpetrators of the crime – or at best dishonourable and dirty political behaviour – are being let off  the hook by certain partisan journalist hacks.

    • Chris T 8.4


      Because I am sure Little didn't bother mentioning it to him or Ardern

  9. Muttonbird 9

    Tom Pullar-Strecker makes the very good point that it is not the Police or the GCSB who says what is lawful and what is not, it is the judiciary.

    The National Party, led now by Paula Benefit furiously writing letter after letter to the SSC and to the media, are trying to divert attention away from their initial misdemeanour, and are wanting desperately to keep the focus on some cast iron definition of the word 'hack'.


    I think it's too late for the Nats and their followers because this budget is now well and truely known as the 'hacked budget' and evidence of that is the liberal sprinkling of the word in every single article you read.

    And the Nats are pouring petrol on it! Madness.

    • Incognito 9.1

      The last two paragraphs of that good Opinion piece:

      To stay on the safe side, if you find information online on a computer system, especially government information, that you know the owner of that computer system would be surprised and furious you had access to – unless you are willing to take a risk for some sort of whistleblowing mission – my advice would be to navigate away.

      Accessing a computer system for a "dishonest purpose" is a separate crime punishable with up to a seven year jail term, by the way, so quite clearly a no-no.

      In my view, accessing the cloned Budget 2019 website 2,000 times over 48 hours clearly suggest a wilful intent and purpose. It is a matter of opinion what the nature of this purpose was; I have mine and others have theirs. The subsequent actions of the responsible Party speak volumes.

  10. RedLogix 10

    An informed and nuanced article this morning:

    Patman says the idea of two great rivals squaring off is appealingly simplistic. But another reason it is quite wrong is the world system has reached a point in its development where its biggest issues are truly global.

    "Think of all the problems the US, New Zealand and China face together. Like climate change. Can any one country unilaterally resolve climate change? No it can't. What about the global economy? Can any one country resolve the economic problems of the world? No it can't."

    Patman says the same applies with terrorism, drugs, pandemics, and any other ill which transcends national borders.


    • marty mars 11.1

      Serious problems there. To reveal medical information is unforgivable imo

  11. Descendant Of Smith 12

    Reading the parliamentary extract below I'm reminded of the Fallout game intro:

    "War. War never changes.

    The Romans waged war to gather slaves and wealth. Spain built an empire from its lust for gold and territory. Hitler shaped a battered Germany into an economic superpower.

    But war never changes.

    In the 21st century, war was still waged over the resources that could be acquired. Only this time, the spoils of war were also its weapons: Petroleum and Uranium. For these resources,China would invade Alaska, the US would annex Canada, and the European Commonwealth would dissolve into quarrelling, bickering nation-states, bent on controlling the last remaining resources on Earth."

    Politics in New Zealand in modern times never changes either. Since the 70's we have lost the notion of socialist type reform, of community, of resistance to capitalism which consistently and vigorously attacks any notion of mutual support through taxation. Housing is part of that malaise.

    Parliamentary Debates, Volume 382

    "but it is also a simple fact that at the time of the general election New Zealand was psychologically sick after 12 years of National Party administration

    There is no question about that Confidence had been eroded to the point of completely disappearing in many sectors of our economy By the end of 1972 we had unemployment at a level seldom experienced except under a National Administration since the 1930s. 

    Home building was lagging despite the needs of the people from one end of the country to the other This afternoon I cited the fall off for example in State housing from the 2,320 units built in 1960 to the miserable 760 units built in 1972.

    The future of that industry was so uncertain that no fewer than 4,000 skilled tradesmen opted out of the industry and left it in a state where obviously there will be some difficulty initially in getting it back to a position where it can do the job that is so desperately needed at present."

    Labour in it's 80's shift to the right is part of this problem. It's affordable housing policy was a nonsense to the half of the population earning below the median wage, particularly with the failure to recognise that  cost of the land made the notion of affordability a nonsense. The simple solution of the state owning the land underneath the house in perpetuity if you really wanted people to own their "house" clashes with the capitalist notion of the land being an asset and having an appreciating value (until the state sells it to the capitalists where it is suddenly worth a lot less at point of sale and a lot more the day after)"

    That earlier politicians recognised the need for the state to intervene in the market to house the working and non-working population, to remove the slum landlords, to reduce market house price escalation and rent subsidisation and to reduce homelessness and that our modern politicians cannot see this says a lot about how modern (neo-liberal) capitalist thought is ever persuasive and promoted as common sense.

    These past working interventions were not designed by the capitalists – they were designed by the socialists, the unions and the communists. These are the people who should be getting consulted now – not the capitalists nor the neo-liberal Harvard trained economists. These people want to dismantle socialist policies and have the market provide solutions.Remember part of the dismantling of Maori culture was because it was seen by the capitalists as being "communistic" with it's greater sense of community over individual.

    It's no use decrying the slum landlords, the motel owners, the camp ground owners, the greedy landlords charging $300-00 a week for a room – they are doing exactly what a capitalistic, market driven economy would drive them to do – they are as economic theory goes being entirely rational. How can I make the maximum profit for the least cost? I have no doubt the wealthy will be jumping on the motel bandwagon as they can.

    (Seems interesting that the hotel/motel accommodation survey was reported as being stopped by MBIE at a time we are filling motels up with homeless people. How will we know how many bed nights are tourists vs homeless?)

    The churches, in their rational charitable way, are jumping in on the act as well – putting their hands out to help the left behind, making money along the way, imposing their own virtuous rules on those "fortunate" enough to come under their stewardship as they look back on the glory days of poor houses and workhouses and homes for unmarried mothers.

    I always note that neither churches nor capitalists like paying tax – they are not strange bed-fellows at all and quite happily spoon together under the blankets of righteousness and respectability.

    And while we continue to stay within the current capitalist paradigms of knowing the price of everything but the value of nothing, while we continue to look for capitalistic solutions, while we fail to actually change the system that exists will continue to get market rational behaviours.

    So like war, politics at least since the 70's doesn't really seem to change either.

    Labour trots out it's slogans:

    2012 was the year of the manifesto.
    2013 was supposed to be the year of the policy…..
    2019 year of delivery

    and then underwhelms.

    That the discourse mainly is about helping individuals is symptomatic of the prevalence of  capitalistic and religious thought. 

    This was highlighted back in 2012 by a worker who articulated the systemic change that had occurred far better than any politician.

    But poverty was formerly a mark against society, now it is seen as an individual's failure, Salesa said.

    "For a long time, living in a state house and working in a factory was a badge of honour. If you did a hard day's work you deserved to live in a good house and live a life of dignity," said Salesa, whose father was a factory worker with Fisher and Paykel.

    "Being poor in New Zealand, the first thing you don't get is dignity."



    • RedLogix 12.1

      Hi … welcome back yes

      A thoughtful comment. Perhaps I can select this as the pivot:

      But poverty was formerly a mark against society, now it is seen as an individual's failure, Salesa said.

      Left vs right wing politics has long been marked out as a debate over these two influences. Yet it always seemed obvious to me that this was not an 'either/or' choice, that both individual failure and social failure would have a mutually interdependence on each other. Or to put it in starker terms, the optimum way to mitigate poverty is to pursue both individual and social excellence.

      Progressive people will rightly look at the decades of neo-liberalism with it's punitive welfare policies and point to the increasing mess of dysfunction build up at the bottom of our society. Poor housing, educational failure, aggression, drugs, mental and physical health failures, crime … the old familiar list.

      Conservative people say that unless the individual is willing to change, to take some responsibility in extracting themselves from the mess they're in … then no amount of do-gooding welfare or social help will make much difference. They rightly argue that welfare easily becomes a multi-generational poverty trap that's exceedingly hard to break.

      Forty years of neo-liberalism has tilted us towards a harsher, judgemental view of poverty that strips away the dignity and demonises the weakest and most vulnerable in our society. It's clear which way the pendulum must move. Yet, as the Meritia Turei debacle clearly shows, as a society we remain resistant to change. No-one argues for poverty, no-one wants to see social dysfunction, but this conventional left/right wing framing of the issue had demonstrably taken us nowhere.


      • Descendant Of Smith 12.1.1

        "Yet it always seemed obvious to me that this was not an 'either/or' choice, that both individual failure and social failure would have a mutually interdependence on each other. Or to put it in starker terms, the optimum way to mitigate poverty is to pursue both individual and social excellence."

        The difficulty I see if that the conventional framing is dominated by capitalist framing and structural organisation. It's like a generation earlier than myself saying they had no welfare system. Well they did – it was called a job in the public service. The public service took on school leavers whether they needed them or not, the public service employed people with disabilities – people for whom the profit driven private sector didn't have jobs for. It was called free education, family benefit and so on.

        Importantly it was underpinned by a sense of community well-being as an overarching goal. Education was free as it was recognised as a community good – not just an individual good.

        You can have both. Lets take something like rail. Lets say, without any complex analysis at this point that rail has both a community good – providing business and the public with necessary infrastructure to enable the country to operate and a private good – enables individuals to travel and businesses take a profit.Let's say it's 50/50. The notion that there is both a public and a private good moves us away from an either or situation where either the state runs rail or it's run for purely a profit.

        The conversation and the conceptualisation that it's both is what I see as important.

        I think formerly we understood that there was a balance. Today the pendulum is towards individualism and capitalism and immediate reward. 

        The irony of course in the Meritia Turei situation, and with many others committing fraud, is that economically they too are behaving entirely rationally. The selective moralising I saw at the time (people complaining about benefit fraud while paying tradesman to do cash jobs to get a cheaper price for instance) was somewhat astounding and hypocritical.

        We need a much stronger swing towards socialistic / community based outcomes without the fear mongering that the right like to use when such things are discussed. By not calling it socialism we would simply need to find new words for the same thing and let the capitalists define the world in their terms. 

        Labour however can't just lead the discourse, they need to actually change things.

        The biggest disappointment for me at this point is the refusal to increase benefit rates. At least two previous royal commissions as well as the welfare advisory group recommended  that this be done. None of the governments in charge at any of those points of recommendation have done so. In that respect the politics wins out over the dignity of those on benefit – as it did when Helen Clark's government put the $20-00 per week back on NZS but not on benefit.


        • RedLogix

          We need a much stronger swing towards socialistic / community based outcomes without the fear mongering that the right like to use when such things are discussed.

          Exactly. This prompts me to reframe it slightly, “how do we achieve this swing while winning the support and confidence of the the right? “The answer seems obvious when we put it like that … when the left demands better social support and community outcomes we must simultaneously link it to better individual outcomes. The right doesn't really like poverty any more than we do, but while the left prioritises it, the right will never vote for programs that do little but entrench it. 

          Understanding right wingers is crucial to gaining their support; and the parable that means much to them is this one, 'give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach him to fish and you will feed him for life'. In other words people who get their shit together will on average look after themselves better than those who don't. 

          It is a mistake to make social support conditional, I'm a big fan of universality. But this does not rule out also insisting on universal social participation, as Ardern I think put it, everyone should be either 'earning, learning, caring or volunteering'.  This is a very powerful idea we could pay a lot more attention to. 

          But yes what you are saying is strong, straightforward leftwing advocacy, that makes perfect sense to people here at TS, but needs refining if it's going to work in the wider community. This govts apparent failure to address benefit rates should really be seen in that context. 

    • Jenny - How to Get there? 12.2

      Why haven't we got an Empty Homes Tax like the city of Vancouver?

      Supply and demand. Is the sick logic of the market.

      Limit the supply, and you can demand whatever rent or mortgage you like. 

      Who cares about the social wreckage created? The market will provide and the devil take the hindmost.

      Family of seven living in a tent with two severely disabled children pleads for help

      8 Jun, 2019 6:00am


      Today we reveal the shocking situation one family of seven is currently facing with trying to find a home in our current housing crisis. Their plight is sad – especially given their special circumstances – but it is reality for many people struggling to find roofs over their heads. They have no power, no running water and are living in a situation most people would find difficult for a weekend let alone months on end. Reporter Kelly Makiha talks to the family about how they cope with day-to-day life…….

      While families are living in tents and cars, at last count there were 33, 000 perfectly serviceable homes standing empty in Auckland alone.

  12. Herodotus 13

    The world and NZ have become far more complicated than the 60's -80's yet we seem to be applying a govt funding model based on these times to fund a 2020 world.

    Yet the commercial/free market world is happy to off load many responsibilities eg wages funded by WFF, tourism and inadequate infrastructure, intensive farming/fishing and deterioration of environment etc.

    So who pays for this gap – or is there ever increasing stress on "the system" and we are now seeing this stress manifest for the 1st time in that the current generation facing the fact that the previous generation has had it better ?

    • WeTheBleeple 13.1

      All our well to do types have offset environmental and social costs for us to pick up the tab now the ecology and social fabric is breaking.

    • Jenny - How to Get there? 13.2

      The market will provide.

      And if the market can't provide the taxpayer will subsidise the market.

      Currently the taxpayer is shelling out $millions to stuff as many of the homeless as possible into motels to pad the pockets of the motel owners.

      Government continues to enable motels to profit from crisis

      Tuesday, 19 February 2019, 1:05 pm
      Press Release: Auckland Action Against Poverty



      A recent investigation by Stuff, coupled with information obtained through the Ministry of Social Development shows that a single motel which charges up to $1,500 per week per room has received over $3 million worth of Government funds to provide emergency assistance, despite never having a Code Compliance Certificate – an offence under the Building Act – and receiving a series of longstanding complaints from occupants regarding the sanitary and safety conditions of the premises. From the period of December 2016 to June 2018 the Government has handed out over $61.7 million worth of Emergency Housing Special Needs grants to motels without putting in place standards to ensure the Emergency Accommodation providers are providing a safe place for homeless people to stay.

      Despite criticism from Labour and other parties when in opposition about using motels for emergency accommodation, the current Government has not introduced any measures to proactively ensure contracted motels meet basic criteria of safety for tenants…..


      [Is it necessary to bold the whole quotation? I’ve unbolded it – Incognito]

      • greywarshark 13.2.1

        A-mazing.    The trouble with government finances is that there are too many separate pockets to dip into.    Something can't be funded out of this pocket.   But another pocket seems to have unlimited funds.   

        There is the wages pocket that has a limit so only skeleton staff can be employed to try to manage necessary duties, but then there is pay-the-contractors' pocket which is quite plump and amenable to being squeezed.  There is probably a funny skit on this on youtube somewhere, perhaps in Yes Minister or the Simpsons.

      • Incognito 13.2.2

        See my Moderation note @ 4:02 PM.

        • Sacha

          Was similar couple of days ago: /the-teachers-strike-2/#comment-1625175.

          May be possible for people to click bold then paste into it and not be able to fix for some reason?

          • Incognito

            Yes, I suppose that’s a possibility but my technical ignorance prevents me from going any further 😉 It doesn’t seem to happen too often, luckily, and it seems to happen more to some than to others …

            Maybe J – HtGt? did try to fix it??

            Anyway, it’s not a biggie IMO, just easier on the eye.

            FYI, as far as I can tell, DMK is not a sockpoppet.

  13. Observer Tokoroa 14

    The Three Stooges

    Mike Smith in his Dispatch seems a bit upset. For Britain, which is now a mere Fossil,  has sworn itself to the total Power of the United States.

    Donald Madman Trump Says Smith " has shown his hand by meeting with Johnson, Gove and Farage. God help us."

    Men of no Standing. No Matter. For all the English citizens are now dishelved suckers wanting to suckle and dribble at the Tits of Trump. 

    Every bit of Trade in Britain will be sacked and splintered by the Gluttonous USA.  Especially – National Health.

    Neither will The Planet Earth be able to cope with Amercan Pollution.  For the Monkey Idiots that comprise the United States would rather Kill Planet Earth than do anything else.

    Americans are the Enemy of not only the Earth, but of Reason itself.

    Look out Children!. You are in the hands of murderous Mr Trump and his weird family.

  14. mauī 15

    Canterbury Cowards? What a weak decision by NZ rugby not to change the team's name. If the team prides itself on excellence, leadership, culture then this decision surely stuffs that all up.

    "The reality is that adidas have got to make jerseys, there's merchandising and that sort of stuff," 

    Yeah, so you need to get on with deciding on a new logo/brand and then would have to email that to your clothing suppliers. Lol, OMG too hard!


    • Morrissey 15.1

      A couple of days ago I heard some fools on RNZ National's Panel programme praising Chairman Tew's "stewardship" of the game. This sort of spinelessness behaviour belies that view.

    • marty mars 15.2

      disgusting creeps – the crusaders = sexual harassment, toxic male attitudes and booze culture compulsory – join up and pretend cos it's easier than trying to solve the problem – drink yourself for bliss forget about the last one get yourself another…

      • Chris T 15.2.1

        The Crusaders have probably the most scandal free record of any elite professional male sporting team

        • marty mars

          so what

          • Chris T

            Well it kind of makes your comment

            "disgusting creeps – the crusaders = sexual harassment, toxic male attitudes and booze culture compulsory"

            A bit silly

            Their whole franchise was built to the success it is by literally family 

            Including entire team and their families having BBQs at weekends to make the whole thing inclusive.

            Frankly your comment was about as wrong as wrong can be

            • marty mars

              that is ridiculous – you have said they are have the most scandal free record but what does that mean – the rest had 2 scandals a month and the crusaders only had 1 a month.

    • Chris T 15.3

      The Crusaders don't decide if they change the name

      The NZRU do.

      Frankly changing the name would just be knee jerk virtue signalling imo. 

      I get emotions were high when it was first muted, but calmer heads have prevailed.

      But I do agree with one thing. The NZRU are cowardly for not just saying they are not changing it, rather than pretending it is some sponsorship thing


      • marty mars 15.3.1

        the name is meaningless – it is made up – it relates to nothing other than some marketing alliteration. But the rugby fans desperate for some relevancy in today's world hold the stupid name close – why?


        that's why

        • Chris T

          OK then

          Why don't the Labour Party change their name?

          These days it is “nothing other than some marketing alliteration” at elections, given the change to their policy

        • Descendant Of Smith

          The other aspect is that this debate has been going on much longer than the events in Christchurch. The world is bigger than this rugby team – Middlesex cricket being but one example that removed Crusaders from its name a few years back.

          The KKK magazine has always been known as The Crusader which seems to serendipitously  fit nicely with the country's skinhead capital.

          I can't see why they don't just change it. Tis just a marketing gimmick. 



        • greywarshark

          Change it to the Canterbury Knights or something similar and they can still have their outfits and their horses and Knights are generally well regarded.   Easy peasy, no need for fainting and wringing of hands.

          • aj

            Canterbury Rangers. Lots of scope for horses there + the play on the South Island Ranges (Southern Alps)

            • mauī

              Nice, I was thinking of something along the lines of Mustering. More New Zealand appropriate too than medieval stuff.

      • Morrissey 15.3.2

        ... knee jerk virtue signalling imo. 

        Idiot, you are.

        • Chris T

          Well it is

          Agree with losing the stupid horses and sword dude though

  15. marty mars 16

    Shocking event – glad they have the suspects now.

    The two women left needing hospital treatment after they were attacked on a bus in a homophobic assault have blamed a rise in rightwing populism for growing hate crime and called on people to stand up for each other.

    … “I was and still am angry. It was scary, but this is not a novel situation,” said Chris. “I’m not scared about being visibly queer. If anything, you should do it more.

    “A lot of people’s rights and basic safety are at risk. I want people to feel emboldened to stand up to the same people who feel emboldened by the rightwing populism that is, I feel, responsible for the escalation in hate crimes,” she told the BBC in a televised interview. “I want people to take away from this that they should stand up for themselves and each other.”

    Geymonat added: “The violence is not only because we are women which are dating each other. It’s also because we are women.”

    …Politicians roundly condemned the attack.


  16. SPC 17

    Robertson meets with Makhlouf after 7.15-35pm and is informed that the matter has been referred to police.

    Around 7.55pm Newshub reports this and around this time the GCSB head informs Little it would not refer to what happened as a hack.


    After this point Robertson makes his call for National not to use the information it has and that the Treasury have referred a hacking complaint to police. And apparently still before Little has informed him of his contact with GCSB.

    National is angry at the idea (and they take it personally because they did go and get the information off the Treasury site and are guilty of deliberately accessing confidential information) of it being called a hack, apparently they and GCSB sing off the same song chart as to what is a hack and what is not a hack (witness the Assange legal case in the USA).

    National had conspired to force an offer of resignation from Robertson (form when budget info is leaked), and to keep focus on him and away from themselves and their actions they claim to be victims of dirty politics (we can see who dances to their tune in the Herald's coverage) – they accuse Robertson of accusing them of hacking (no one had accused anyone of hacking, but National was not ready to admit they had gathered the confidential information albeit by a means they did not accept was hacking).

    Now with the apparent help of a leak form the GCSB, the Herald is promoting the line that Ministers knew because one Minister was informed by GCSB. IMO the lack of regard for confidentiality of information displayed by both National and GCSB is of concern. We know what Paula Bennett did with confidential information when Minister etc. 

    • Muttonbird 17.1

      National are desperate for the language to be steered away from the word 'hack', and that is what has incensed them from the beginning – the idea that anyone could think their motives and method were not pure.

      The noise of the past week, as you say, is their attempt at keeping the focus away from their original misadventure.

      Agree that the leaks and statements coming out of the GCSB are hugely concerning. They are paid to listen, not talk.

    • bwaghorn 17.2

      National are not angry that they have been accused of hacking . 

      National found a weakness and are ringing every last drop of shit stirring they possible  can out of it . 

      Any one who cant see this is fucking thick.

      • SPC 17.2.1

        So Bridges was not angry but feigning anger, and lying about being angry. 

        Sure, OK …

        • bwaghorn

          Yip he is . Hes a greasy little turd that has just happened to float to the surface of the septic tank that the national party has become. 

        • McFlock

          If he had an ounce of self-reflection Bridges would be channelling the anger at himself that he turned a gift story about budget infosec into a fucking semantic debate about the meaning of the word "hack".

          I mean, seriously, how do you fuck that up?

    • Incognito 17.3

      Last night on OM I wondered about a leaker in the GCSB. The media seems to know an awful lot about what Ministers had been told and when. Andrew Little was contacted by GCSB but he may not have known about Makhlouf and Robertson’s conversation. Didn’t the GCSB tell Treasury that it was a matter for the Police? Anyway, all this conveniently distracts away from the people who started all this in the first place.

      • SPC 17.3.1

        Yes, the early reports indicated GCSB did not see it as a government systems hack, but something specific to attempts to access info off the Treasury site and something for the police to look into … . The confidentiality of government information side of the law, which police could not be bothered with – wonder how they will feel if its their information next time (early this century DPF managed to pull a similar gathering of information about police statistics before they were released, on Kiwiblog he posted about this when this story broke in budget week). 

  17. Jenny - How to Get there? 18

    Houston, we have ‘consensus’

    The terrible tragedy of the Zero Carbon Act; is consensus between all the parties on climate change, means that voters will be denied a chance to decide between the parties on this issue. And again, despite the growing urgency, climate change will again not be debated on the hustings for another electoral cycle.

    No Right Turn

    Friday, June 07, 2019

    Climate Change: National still peddling denial

     ……worrying about "consensus" with Denier National is unnecessary. Instead, the government should legislate the strongest bill NZ First will allow them to – and dare National to oppose it. If they do, paint them truthfully as the party of denial, delay, and do nothing, and voters will do the rest.

    (It’s called having faith in the people)

  18. joe90 19


    • Andre 19.1

      Even 25 years ago, almost all the engineering I got involved in in the US was done in metric. But I still get a giggle out of having to express the result of a test in newtons per pound.

      (it was the slope of a curve, before all you nerds out there try to tell me it's a constant 4.448)

      • Macro 19.1.1

        lol I still remember my first physics lecture – Naturally it was on units. Part of the first assignment was to convert miles per gallon into per acres! Buggered if I'm going to work out the conversion factor for you. now tho. 🙂

    • Macro 19.2


      Mind you I remember when we were "forced" – forced I tell you! by that UltraRight Muldoon to move from our sacred and oh so blessed LSD (Pounds, Shillings, and Pence) not acid on 1 July 1967. I still have that jingle in my head. angry It caused huge relief to all school pupils who suddenly no longer had to calculate the cost of 12 men working 8 hours at 5 shillings and fourpence h'penny per hour. And great anguish to a multitude of teachers who now had to dream up an even more tangled question for a far more simplified money system.

      The fact is the 'merican gallon is different from what was the British Imperial Gallon as well! I would have thought that 'merica was the ideal place for a simplified system of measurement. Certainly if the"knowledge" of their "President" is anything to go by.

      And it wasn't Robespierre it was a panel of 5 French Scientists and Mathematicians Jean-Charles de BordaJoseph-Louis LagrangePierre-Simon LaplaceGaspard Monge and Nicolas de Condorcet. who developed the first complete metrical system which has been developed and is continuing to be modified – even this year.

      • joe90 19.2.1

        Deep state Jacobins.

    • WeTheBleeple 19.3

      "You give us heart to defend against the global tyranny of the metric system" – Tucker Carlson

      OMFG!!! surprise

      They're batshit crazy stupid now…

    • Andre 19.4

      Whenever any American colleagues would whine about having trouble with the metric system, I used to wind them up by asking why they were so fixated on using some weird measurement system dreamed up by some mad english king that was so inbred he had six toes on each foot and hand, which is why there are 12 inches in a foot. Nobody ever called bullshit.

    • Morrissey 19.5

      Is it really "a nation of people" that's stupid? Or is it that the political class treats them with no respect?

      Look at the "choice" they were "given" by the Republican and Democratic Parties at the last presidential election. Do you blame the "nation of people" for that, or do you blame the likes of Nancy Pelosi and Debbie Wasserman Schultz?

  19. joe90 20

    Only the best people, #…

  20. greywarshark 22

    This is worrying concerning NZ intellectual archives and memory.   We don't want to find outselves to be in the position of a determinedly ignorant leader caring nothing about our accumulated valuable records as in Canada's past Prime Minister Stephen Harper. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Harper

    Stephen Joseph Harper PC (born April 30, 1959) is a Canadian economist, entrepreneur, and retired politician who served as the 22nd prime minister of Canada for nearly a decade, from February 6, 2006, to November 4, 2015.


    New Zealand :


    Behind the scenes at Te Papa  : Lionel Carter & Mike Rudge

    ,,,the Board bears an obligation to maintain the resources and the necessary discipline-specific skills. After all, its own Statement of Intent states the museum will “maintain collections to the highest possible standard.”

    The Board of Te Papa comprises people mostly qualified in subjects such as law, finance and public affairs, not in science or, in particular, biology. (A temporary exception was the tenure of Sir Peter Gluckman, a paediatrician.

    Te Papa restructurings 2012-2018

    The restructuring proposed in 2018 was the third in five years. A restructuring in 2012 reduced the number of staff managing the natural history collections by roughly 50% as indicated in the graph below. The proposals in 2018 cut a further 50%. These are not trivial figures. Even worse, people, with specialised expertise and institutional memory are being replaced by inexperienced generalists.

    Generic managers and executives – out.   Bean-counters and accountants – out.

    This set of adjectives – do they describe our present persons of powerful positions?
    philistine    –  a person who is hostile or indifferent to culture and the arts.

      "I am a complete philistine when it comes to paintings"
    synonyms:lowbrow, anti-intellectual, materialist, bourgeois; boor, ignoramus, lout, oaf, barbarian, primitive, savage, brute, yahoo, vulgarian

    • OnceWasTim 22.1

      "Generic managers and executives – out.   Bean-counters and accountants – out.

      This set of adjectives – do they describe our present persons of powerful positions?
      philistine    –  a person who is hostile or indifferent to culture and the arts." ……..

      ……….  a big reason why this coalition can never be transformational and 'kind' until they tackle that problem. Not just in the arts.

      Incognito had a good post the other day (Politicians Don't Know Jack).   See comment12 at bottom

  21. joe90 23

    So, it's a long con..


    Uber’s longer-term goal was to eliminate all meaningful competition and then profit from this quasi-monopoly power. While it has already begun using some of this artificial power to suppress driver wages, it has not achieved the Facebook- or Amazon-type “plat­form” power it hoped to exploit. Given that both sustainable profits and true industry dominance seemed unachievable, Uber’s investors de­cided to take the company public, based on the hope that enough gullible investors still believe that the compa­ny’s rapid growth and popularity are the result of powerfully effi­cient inno­vations and do not care about its inability to generate profits.

    These beliefs about Uber’s corporate value were created entirely out of thin air. This is not a case of a company with a reasonably sound operating business that has managed to inflate stock market expectations a bit. This is a case of a massive valuation that has no relationship to any economic fundamentals. Uber has no competitive efficiency advantages, operates in an industry with few barriers to entry, and has lost more than $14 billion in the previous four years. But its narratives convinced most people in the media, invest­ment, and tech worlds that it is the most valuable transportation company on the planet and the second most valuable start-up IPO in U.S. history (after Facebook).

    ..and a real life example of what people have been saying for years; real profit comes out of workers wages.

      Uber’s entry substantially increased the demand for drivers. If labor markets worked as predicted by economic theory, this should have significantly increased driver take-home pay and improved working conditions. Instead, Uber exploited artificial market power to subvert normal market dynamics.


    Starting in 2015, Uber eliminated most of the incentives it had used to attract drivers and unilaterally raised its share of passenger fares from 20 percent to 25–30 percent. Almost all of Uber’s margin improvement since 2015 is explained by this reduction of driver compensation down to minimum wage levels, not by improved efficiency. These unilateral compensation cuts resulted in a direct wealth transfer from labor to capital of over $3 billion.


    • reason 23.1

      In NZ Uber flouts and is non-compliant with nearly all passenger service requirements and laws …

      Some examples being …..


      A passenger service class of drivers license , which involves a police check,,,, Land Transport photo identification, and a compulsory defensive driving course before sitting the license.

      Log book requirements and rules  on how many hours driving before compulsory rest periods ….. how many hours out of 24 you are permitted to work.


      Passenger service vehicles have  more stringent warrant of fitness safety inspections, which can only be done at a VINZ testing station….


      I presume they flout the laws in other countries as well …. leading one to ask how they have got away with it.


      The answer seems to be their existence and growth has occured while the poms , Canada  the Aussies and NZ ….. had right wing or conservative Governments in charge . Deregulation is in their blood.


      The fact that Uber has also attacked their workers pay and conditions , as well as those across the industry …. also dovetails with right wing politics.


      I do wonder what creative sham they use,  to exempt themselves from our NZ transport  laws though…

  22. Eco maori 24

    Eco Maori say in reality to save the Papatuanuku (as we know)  save it our future from a huge MESS men are creating  we must EMPOWER Wahine women. 

    They are the intelligence human special half of humanity they give us life we must give them respect responsiblity and that =equality for Wahine  = happy healthy future. 

    I did not realize it was World Ocean day yesterday ka pai we need to have a culture that respect Our Ocean. 


    To save the oceans, we must first empower women 


    Rather, there is a necessary cultural shift that needs to be undertaken to highlight the equal value of a woman's input when it comes to sustainable management. While this may sound like an insurmountable task, the power of an individual to make waves cannot be overemphasized.

    Read: 7 startling facts about the crisis facing our oceans

    My own journey has been greatly influenced by strong role models such as Sylvia Earle and Rachel Carson, marine biologists who made their voices heard when gender inequality was even more prevalent.

    In 1970, Earle led the first all-female team of aquanauts and later became the first female chief scientist at the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration link below ka kite ano. 



  23. Eco maori 25

    Kia ora Hui .

    Our Labour lead Coalition governments has delivered a lot of good policy for the common people tangata whenua make up a big portion of the common people so we are getting a better deal from this government. Money for helping papa kainga is very good I see all the whanau whare in need of Maintenance. 

    The preservation of  tangata whenua art of weaving clokes in Pukekohe ka pai Emily White for your mahi in teaching others to weave clokes ka pai teaching pakiha anyone one who likes to learn the great Art .

    Ka kite ano 

  24. Eco maori 26

    Its carbon fuels we have to stop using ASAP all the other causes of Global warming can be tackled in the near future. 

    If we dump carbon fuels that will go a long way to leaving our decendince a happy healthy future. 

    Earth's carbon dioxide levels are highest they've been in millions of years This level hasn't been seen in human history and is also higher than at any point in millions of years This is the highest seasonal peak recorded in 61 years of observations on top of Hawaii's largest volcano, and the seventh consecutive year of steep global increases in concentrations of CO2 la kite ano link below. 


  25. Eco maori 27

    Kia ora Newshub. 

    The polls give Eco Maori a sore face very good 

    The business community should be rubbing there hands together with all the extra government spending going into Aotearoa economy common tangata  have more money to spend on goods and services .

    That's sad that island bay Tapu Te Ranga Marae it will be hard for the local people condolence for your losses. 

    I have said many times that the JUSTICE system needs to clean up its act.

    You would think that a Vitale service like a ferry to Waiheke island would be on time a have a reliable service. It would be good if the Auckland council could take over the ferry's the islands is a big attraction. 

    The Pink and white terraces were  beautiful scenic sight it is cool the underwater filming of them and research them. 

    Ka kite ano 

  26. Eco maori 28

    Kia ora te ao Maori news. 

    Its not good for the tangata of  Tapu Te Ranga Marae it sound like quite a few people live in and are camping at the Marae it's lucky no one was losted in the fire.

    It would be good for our tamariki if we don't dig holes in the Dome to bury Auckland rubbish we need to minimize wastre and recycle everything .

    That was awesome see te tangata in world war uniforms I don't like war but OUR Tipuna got and gave te tangata whenua O Aotearoa heaps of Mana for there effort and losses. There are stories about our tipuna not being happy about no getting what the pakiha soldiers got when they got home I could see the effects around Te Awa and Waikato. 

    Ka kite ano 


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    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
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    1 week ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
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  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
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    1 week ago
  • Generalist to specialist
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Worse than I thought
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • More bad faith
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Bite-sized learning
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    1 week ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    2 weeks ago

  • New Zealand medical specialists to provide further support to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further support for Samoa’s longer term needs as it continues to respond to a devastating measles epidemic. “Samoa’s health system has experienced massive strain in the wake of the measles epidemic. The volume of patients needing care during this outbreak, and the number of ...
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  • Discounted electric-bikes offered to public sector workers
    Discounted electric bikes will be offered up to public sector staff across the country as part of the Government’s work to reduce transport emissions and support healthier transport options.  Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter officially launched the new initiative at Wellington Hospital today.  “The Government has negotiated bulk-purchase ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Australia and New Zealand confirm joint bid for FIFA Women’s World Cup
    The Australian and New Zealand Governments today launch an historic joint bid to bring the FIFA Women’s World Cup to the Southern Hemisphere for the first time. Australian Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck and New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson will announce the bold campaign, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Blackwater gold mine gets PGF boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) has approved a $15 million loan to help re-establish a gold mining operation at Blackwater Gold Mine, near Reefton, Rural Communities Minister and local MP Damien O’Connor announced at an event on the West Coast today. “This is great news for the Coast that could ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Housing First to help Nelson Tasman homeless
    Nelson has today seen the launch of Housing First Nelson Tasman. Today’s launch marks the expansion of the Government’s homelessness programme, Housing First, to the top of the South Island. “Housing First is a proven programme that puts people who are experiencing homelessness and multiple, high and complex needs into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Government takes bite out of loan sharks
    The days of vulnerable consumers falling victim to loan sharks, truck shops and other predatory lenders are numbered, following the Credit Contracts Legislation Amendment Bill passing its third reading tonight. “Too many Kiwis are being given loans that are unaffordable and unsuitable, trapping them in debt and leaving their families ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • New Zealand safer as Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders Bill) becomes law
    A Bill that prevents terrorism and supports the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas has passed its third reading, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill is a carefully targeted response to manage the risk posed by a small number of New Zealanders who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Foreign Minister and Pacific Peoples Minister to visit Samoa
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Samoa on Friday, where New Zealand medical teams are helping Samoa respond to an outbreak of measles. “New Zealand has been working closely with the Government of Samoa and offering our assistance from the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • New Pastoral Care Code will support tertiary students in 2020
    The Government has changed the law to improve student safety and welfare in university halls of residence and other student accommodation. The Education (Pastoral Care) Amendment Bill passed its third reading this afternoon and details of an interim Code of Practice setting out the Government’s expectations of tertiary providers have also been released. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • New infrastructure funding tool to build housing developments faster
    A new tool to help councils fund and finance infrastructure could mean some housing developments happen a decade earlier than currently planned, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. “This new tool, developed by the Government in partnership with industry and high-growth councils, will allow councils to access private debt ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Vision to unite the primary sector launched today
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has welcomed the release of a bold new vision for the country’s vital food and fibre sector. “I’m delighted that New Zealand’s major farmer and grower organisations are today supporting the Primary Sector Council’s vision – Fit for a Better World,” he said. “The international consumers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ congratulates PNG and Autonomous Bougainville Government on referendum
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has congratulated the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government for completing a well-conducted referendum on the future political status of Bougainville. “New Zealand supported the referendum process by providing technical advice through the New Zealand Electoral Commission and leading a Regional Police ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Next steps for Upper North Island logistics
    In light of Cabinet’s position that freight operations on prime land in downtown Auckland are no longer viable, the Government will now embark on a short work programme to enable decision-making in the first half of next year, Associate Transport Minister Shane Jones says. Minister Jones is today releasing the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Surgical mesh restorative justice report received
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai a milestone for drinking water safety
    The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai , introduced to Parliament today, is a milestone for drinking water safety in New Zealand and will help improve environmental outcomes for urban waterways, rivers and lakes.  “This is a breakthrough for New Zealanders in terms of providing safe drinking water throughout ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to new direction for criminal justice reform announcement
    Kia ora koutouE ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā matā wakaTēnā koutou katoaHaere ngā, moe maiKoutou ma ngā Rangatira Ko Anaru ahauKo au te Minita mo ngā TureHe Honore tino nui kei roto I ahau No reira tena koutou katoa Today, we are releasing two reports that are the ...
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    1 day ago
  • New direction for criminal justice reform
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
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    2 days ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
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    3 days ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
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    4 days ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
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    4 days ago
  • Death of NZ High Commissioner to Cook Islands
    New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Tessa Temata, died in Palmerston North over the weekend, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said today. Ms Temata, 52, had recently returned to New Zealand for medical treatment. "On behalf of the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, we extend ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Wellington rail upgrade full steam ahead
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced construction is underway on Wellington commuter rail upgrades which will mean more frequent services and fewer breakdowns. The upgrades include converting the Trentham to Upper Hutt single track section to a double track, with a new signalling system, upgraded stations and level crossings, and ...
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    4 days ago
  • Defence Climate Change Implementation Plan released
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw have announced the release of a Defence Climate Change Implementation Work Plan, titled Responding to the Climate Crisis: An Implementation Plan.  The plan sets out a series of recommendations based on the 2018 New Zealand Defence Assessment, The ...
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    4 days ago
  • Govt releases funding to support South Canterbury
    A medium-scale adverse event has been declared for the South Canterbury district, which will see up to $50,000 in funding made available to support farming communities which have been significantly affected by recent heavy rain and flooding in the area, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two weeks of solid rain ...
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    5 days ago
  • Speech at launch of Rethinking Plastics Report
    Thank you Professor Juliet Gerrard and your team for the comprehensive and extremely helpful report and recommendations. Thank you too to all the stakeholders and interested parties who have contributed ideas and thinking to it. “Making best practice, standard practice” is a great framework for change and the action plan ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste
    The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealandreport, released by her Chief Science Advisor ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • International student enrolments grow in universities and the regions
    International education continues to thrive as the Government focuses on quality over quantity, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. The tuition revenue from international education increased to $1.16 billion last year with the average tuition fee per student increasing by $960. The total number of international students enrolled in New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago