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Open mike 08/07/2020

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 8th, 2020 - 184 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 …

184 comments on “Open mike 08/07/2020 ”

  1. In any decent political climate, this should mean the end of the Natz party.

    ‘Dirty politics’ was always a rather nebulous term which never really resonated with the public because there seemed a paucity of evidence – ‘just those bloody politicians playing their games, don’t you know.’

    Now the Natz have been exposed in a finite and very identifiable way at a time of national crisis. ‘Ordinary’ kiwis will feel the depravity of this.

    Any half-way decent Natz voter (and there must be a few of them, surely) will be disgusted with the Natz under Muller’s leadership. They should (not wanting to give a vote to the left – heaven forbid) flock now to NZ First, with the more unbalanced going to Act. Sure, Seymour is a fuckwit, but he’s a relatively clean right-wing fuckwit.

    In any self-respecting party there should be three resignations on the leader’s table by now – Woodlouse’s (for being party to the on-going MoH leaks etc.) Walker’s for his ‘error of judgement’) and Muller’s (for his lack of leadership.)

    As for Covid 1-18 Boag, don’t get me started!

    • /agreed

      "In any decent political climate, this should mean the end of the Natz party"

      unfortunately it is just not in a gNat's DNA, whether its the older gNat, such as the dripping Ms Shipley or the dripping Ms Boag who regard themselves as royalty – even though they talk of 'ordinary New Zealanders', or the newer :just "win at all cost, the trinkets will flow along the way" breed.

      Probably time for the likes of a spud Bolger or a McKinnon to say something if they want their precious party to return to something verging on decent (not that I've ever voted for them)

      • I Feel Love 1.1.1


        Totally Dirty Politics, Boag supplies, Walker releases, Muller acts outraged. RNZ highlights Walkers different statements as to why he released the private information. Dodgy shit.

        And yep, if Muller had integrity he would go, he’s the leader of this.

        • gsays

          So Muller knew on Monday lunch-time.

          Muller says he had to check if his lawyer was better than Walker's lawyer, before forming an opinion or to act.

          The cynic in me wonders if it was polling that was the hold up rather than awaiting another legal opinion.

          • greywarshark

            gsays great analysis. You come up with good points which I enjoy reading.

          • Anne

            Yes, I agree with grey. You do come up with good points gsays – simple and easy to understand too.

            But to be fair to Muller and co. its human nature when confronted with a major problem to spend time looking for a way to stem the flow of blood before it gets out of hand. I think that was what they were doing. In the end, they had to confront it head on.

            • gsays


              They are going to need to widen the doors here if I am to get this swollen head outside.

        • tc

          Mullers job is to lead this party in all it's DP glory. He knew nothing as Matty n Michelle are not stupid, plausible deniability works best that way.

          Medias already taken his 'bad judgement' line it seems rather than call it for what is actually is, no surprises there.

          National party court date Friday over donations and now this saga. Hipkins will hopefully through the proverbial book at it….. they deserve no less as it was a calculated political action. What lovely humans the national party contain.

          • greywarshark

            Does Hipkins have a proverbial book to look through? I wonder which one he would choose? I like the historic King James Version of the Bible. It's got some really good stuff in it! https://dailyverses.net/honesty/kjv

            A froward man soweth strife:
            and a whisperer separateth chief friends. Proverbs 16:28

            Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment,
            and equity; yea, every good path. Proverbs 2:9

            Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15

        • Muttonbird

          Yeah, Walker is shifting his story under direction from the National Party because they are terrified of losing their source within the MoH.

          He initially said he used the info to back up his claim Indians, Pakistanis and Koreans were coming to Queenstown. Dark people!

          This then means the info was stolen to order by Boag using the National Party plant in the Ministry. The Nats are terrified of losing that source.

          • woodart

            forensic traceback off boags email should be interesting.even burner phones leave a footprint.

          • Leighton

            If it was stolen to order then shouldnt it have included information about the patients' country of origin – you know, the thing Walker was apparently trying to prove?

            • Muttonbird

              Perhaps the leaker didn't have time to complete the work, or it was too dangerous to try.

    • Morrissey 1.2

      Is treason still a capital offence in this country?

      • Herodotus 1.2.1

        No that was taken out during the Helen Clark years, so from my understanding no crime now has the potential of being a capital offences Orr you I think it was sedition

        • Herodotus

          I think it was sedition not treason that was removed from being a capital offence. 🤭

    • Ad 2.1

      I recall posting on this in May last year.

      The best argument for sustaining rural communities and towns is to enable more productive use of these massed and bulky commodities. Protect our sawmills, protect our furniture makers, protect our packaging processors, protect our carvers.

      The same goes for our wools. Our coarse wools are now so cheap and unwanted that the entire wool processing industry for coarse wools is dead. Only Merino has a hope.

      Covid19 + the commodities retreat will be a major outgoing tide for many small towns. Gisborne is in for a really tough time.

      [Fixed error in user name]

      • bwaghorn 2.1.1

        It's a shame about wool . Its biodegradable, renewable, fire proof . But yip it's dying ,I would go for a non shearing breed if it was my decision to make . Many are already .

        How do you protect you local industries without wreaking free trade agreements?

        • gsays

          I agree with you about wool and the shamefully low price it commands.

          We need to invest in wool, technology and research because it's fossil fuel replacement has got to go out of fashion.

        • Draco T Bastard

          fire proof .

          No, really, its not.

          Wool is one of the more fire-resistant of the natural fibres but it will still burn.

          How do you protect you local industries without wreaking free trade agreements?

          And thus proving that FTAs are not about free-trade as protecting an industry is part of the under-lying philosophy of willing buyer – willing seller that is free-trade.

    • AB 2.2

      Why does anyone believe that crude and indirect financial instruments like the ETS will achieve what we want in any specific sense? It must be some lingering vestige of 1980's thinking, where the role of government was just to create the appropriate operating frameworks, and then the private sector deploys its god-like efficiency to deliver the results – which will always be optimal for everyone. Delusional.

      • greywarshark 2.2.1

        bwaghorn noted this which seems to be an important fact.

        On the East Coast, for instance, a landowner will be paid 10 times more [when under ETS, Emissions Trading Scheme] by year 5 for planting pine trees instead of native forest, and farmland is going under pine trees in many places. With wool prices at historic lows, and rising carbon prices, this trend will only accelerate.

        The thing is that wool must go up eventually, it is such a valuable fibre, and the sheep is such a good, useful animal, we must not have our knowledgable sheep farmers pushed out by short-term climate advantage from small-minded pollies, tendentious reasoning and thoughtless pandering to the Mr Creosotes of this world.Note: The low wool price will I hope be temporary. It is largely because of the tensions between US-China and the trade war.

        In a previous time when there was a war we made lots from selling our wool.

        • bwaghorn

          With oil so cheap wool doesn't stand a chance imho. It's only hope is as a insulation product but even farm buy the cheaper glass insulation.

      • bwaghorn 2.2.2

        Trading carbon will not reduce carbon emmisions on a global scale, all it does is allow the guilt to be shifted to pooer countries and people.

        • Just Is

          Especially when NZ had purchased millions of dollars worth fake Carbon Credits, NZ was 3rd down on the list of purchases in terms of the amount of money spent.

          No prizes for guessing who the culprit was

  2. Dennis Frank 3

    How serious this will be for the Nats hinges on whether the privacy breach is criminal. I hope Andrew Geddes issues his opinion on that. Meanwhile:

    National MP Hamish Walker and former party president Michelle Boag are unlikely to face criminal charges for their roles in the leaking of Covid-19 patient data to the media, a privacy lawyer says.


    Barrister Kathryn Dalziel, an expert in privacy law, said the pair appeared to have interfered in the privacy of patients, but it was unlikely to be a criminal offence.

    MPs working in their official capacity were exempt from this aspect of privacy law – “[Walker’s] probably safe there,” Dalziel said.

    • gsays 3.1

      There is a pressure point from which more information can come…

      From that link: "But the Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust could be liable for damages after Boag, the acting chief executive of the trust, admitted to breaching the privacy of patients."

      I am curious as to how many other boards Boag troughs from? Whether they are reassessing her suitability.

      • Dennis Frank 3.1.1

        Muller told Corin Dann that it will be up to the National Party board to decide whether to cut all ties with Boag or not. They have a meeting today. Can't recall exactly how he framed his personal response but did seem as though he prefers they do that.

        • Ed1

          Hamish Walker has decided not to stand in his electorate this year . . .

          Todd Muller has accepted Walkers decision – interesting since that is before the National Party Board have made any decisions.

          Letting Walker down easily?

  3. Dennis Frank 4

    Naughty boy again, got told off again. Muller was forthright in his responses to John Campbell on TVNZ just before 7am. And Ben Thomas (from the right wing) is also:

    Instead, it is more likely the garrulous and popular Walker, an assiduous networker around parliament’s press gallery and other media, saw an opportunity to improve his relationships with journalists and with a senior figure from the party (Boag). Like a school child trusted with a secret, his first instinct was to tell people he knew it.

    The privacy breach is appalling. There is absolutely no public interest in knowing the names and details of people with Covid-19 who are taking all the correct steps in quarantine.

    Walker claimed in his apology that he had intended to “to expose the government’s shortcomings so they would be rectified”, apparently referring to the lack of password protection on the data. But the privacy breach was not caused by the government, it was caused by Boag.


    • mauī 4.1

      Forthright? He had to be pressed by Campbell if he thought Walker should be sacked or not. Then couldn't make a call, so went with "lost confidence" in him.

      • Dennis Frank 4.1.1

        Well he has demoted him to the lowest position in the Nat caucus and stripped him of his roles as spokesperson. I doubt Nat rules allow Muller to "sack" Walker. I think the closest to that would be the Nat hierarchy securing his deselection as candidate.

    • swordfish 4.2

      … saw an opportunity to improve his relationships with journalists and with a senior figure from the party (Boag).

      Has been argued that Boag was specifically assigned by Senior Nats to act as his mentor … Walker simply doing her bidding.

      And Boag, in turn, doing … whose ? … bidding.

    • greywarshark 4.3

      'There is absolutely no public interest in knowing the names…'

      Acshually there is no right for anyone in the public to know the names…. because we have laws that prevent this. Or so I understand, I may of course be wrong, or it may be open to interpretation. But although sometimes the law is a bit odd, (as in withholding the name of Grace Mullane's killer – Prince A.drew?) I think there is an intention for privacy in the law and it should be upheld and exercised if breached.

      So the initial line is not even a moot point, and shows a distressing lack of probity.

  4. Here's my take on the privacy breach:

    There's a Natz mole deep in the MoH who has been, for some time, leaking details to the Natz.

    How did Bishop get information about the 2 women driving to Wellington?

    How did Woodlouse get the info on the 'homeless' man?

    To my way of thinking, the conduit is Covid-1-18 Boag, who passed the information on to where she thought it would do the most damage.

    This enquiry still has some way to go, and more revelations to surface.

    Popcorn anyone?

    • Rapunzel 5.1

      A double serving the SFO donation case kicks off Friday – you would assume that pleading not guilty will result in some issues raised as a defence

    • /agreed once again.

      But then I lament the state of our public service (the middle/senior ranks at least, although in some cases – such as WINZ, the culture certainly trickles down).

      There's just been another bloody good example of how its all hanging together on Morning Report and reform is long overdue


      You can see it clearly with the disdain the public service has for the OIA; or the amount of spin and spin doctors they seem to think are necessary; or the reluctance of the SSC to do anything until things become really serious; or its sluggishness in an era when the world has become more dynamic; or among some public servants themselves who couldn't even tell you what a Code of Conduct was; or the excessive use of contractors and consultants. It does not serve us well

      • greywarshark 5.2.1

        Yes OwT – very distressing for the Muslim women, and even more so for we in the public to hear who believed we still had some quality of protection for people under threat. And it underlines the sad reaction from Muslims to the ignorant cry from a NZer 'This is not us. We're not like that' or similar words. Get real ducky.

        • OnceWasTim

          Sometimes I think we might either need a more activist judiciary, or at least an SSC experienced in judicial matters (like the current Ombudsman or Children's Commissioner) rather than the crop of former ps CEO/business oriented do nothing dipshits we seem to have been getting lately. A supposedly impressive CV does not necessarily make for a good SSC. Something's got to give or we'll be seeing more of the same.

          • greywarshark

            And that means madness! Or have we already stepped over that line in the sand?

  5. Foreign waka 6

    And we are back to house price inflation despite having so many not able to afford a roof over their head. The Real Estate fraternity is already rubbing their hands to make money out of the returning Kiwis and putting affordability ever more out of reach. We will have to see whether world events will not set us further into a recession and more jobs are lost once the wage subsidy ends. Talk about irresponsibility.

  6. Dennis Frank 7

    Kim Hill interviewing the Privacy Commissioner on RNZ just now, it is becoming clear that Boag is extremely vulnerable to the prospect of prosecution. Edwards said he will be talking to Heron QC, but usually acts on the basis of a complaint from victims of privacy breaches.

    Muller has done well so far. He is pointing to a values-based division between his vision of the Nats and the behaviour of the two "rogues".

    • tc 7.1

      likely doing what Matty tells him to. A solid strategy as nat voters have shown no real concern over these tactics in the past so it’s not going away

    • aom 7.2

      Oh for God's sake DF, this whole stinking pile of effluent is just the next dump on top of Muller's successive encouragements of such unethical behaviour.

      • Dennis Frank 7.2.1

        But we now know Muller wasn't briefed by the young dude. Got blindsided. So Muller's doing damage control. No evidence he encouraged "unethical behaviour". Muller is trying to tread a fine line, and I'm watching to see if he's authentic about being a better leader for the Nats. Intentions aren't enough.

        • gsays

          His silence around Woodhouse's antics : Covid cuddle couple, homeless man in isolation and latterly the toilet seat bullying, is closer to condoning than criticising.

          None of those three episodes blindsided him…

          • Dennis Frank

            Yes, all good points. But he does have to read his room, eh? To survive as leader. So there's a kind of shepherding involved. A moral compass is often deflected by practical politics – we see enough of that in the Labour, Greens & other politicians to know that the system makes it happen.

            • gsays

              I think you are describing a manager, not a leader.

              • greywarshark

                What we need is a manger, and then we might get a leader!

                Or has the door been opened, and the one stepped through? Are we as humanly close as we can get to what we need? I'm Gollum looking for my precious.

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Come come Dennis, methinks you're being disingenuous. If, in your opinion, "the system" is the "makes it happen" problem, then how to explain the absence of "The Hollow Men" and "Dirty Politics" style books that might hold up a mirror to the left's equivalent misdeeds?

              This latest 'misdemenor' re-exposes an inconvenient truth about how the NZ National party does its 'business' – they are dirty to their DNA, and much more so than most. Dirty in power, and out of it.

              • Dennis Frank

                I agree – the right have always been more inclined to misbehaviour. I emerged into adulthood as a staunch anti-fascist. I'm just trying to encourage a more balanced view of the National Party. If their more human faction consolidates, the more rabid faction will wither. To me it's important to be fair to political opponents since human nature is the common ground. 😇

                • woodart

                  think you are being fooled by the "big tent" tag, that conservative parties try to sell. your hope sounds like the hope that millions of repub voters have expressed, while holding their noses, and staying in the tent(yuk!)

                • Drowsy M. Kram

                  "I'm just trying to encourage a more balanced view of the National Party."

                  IMHO the solution lies in the hands of National party politicians, but I'm sure they will welcome any and all assistance.

  7. gsays 8

    What a time for political junkies.

    Kim Hill (God Bless Her), interviewing Shane Jones on, initially, the new port report, moved to links NZ 1st has with UK spin doctors.

    Jones on his high horse had already trotted out a couple of choice quotes when he essentially called his interviewer a "feral animal". For a fleeting moment I felt sympathy for the man as he quickly graunched his gearbox getting into reverse.

    Sorry, can't find link yet. I am sure it will be up on RNZ site soon.

    • Bearded Git 8.1

      Heard that gsays …it was hilarious…..Hill retorted immediately…"who are you calling feral" (or something similar) ….after this Jones' famous eloquence turned to gobbledegook

  8. Muttonbird 9

    Unfortunately NZF are likely to be benefactors from this latest round of National Party subterfuge.

    • Just Is 9.1

      Why do think that's a bad thing?

      Splitting the vote will see National struggle in the election

      NZF are on a very low polling in the Colmar Brunton Poll, a few more votes for them from Nats is probably a good thing.

      I don't like to predict the outcome of the upcoming election, but there is every possibility that Labour could possibly win outright and not require any partners.

      I'm not sure they would go that way, I think they would still bring the Greens in to include a broader range of policies for a broader range of interests

      If Labour were to win outright, it would be the first time any political party had won outright with a majority since before Muldoon.

      Maybe "The Times they are a Changing"

      A Bob Dylan classic

      • swordfish 9.1.1

        If Labour were to win outright, it would be the first time any political party had won outright with a majority since before Muldoon.

        Do what ?

        The last time a single Party won a majority of seats was at the 1993 Election (many years after Muldoon).

        The last time a single Party won more than 50% of the vote, on the other hand, was at the1951 Snap Election.

        • Just Is

          Muldoon and National over the yrs have goverened with a minority on multiple occasions, the worst was Muldoon on 42.5% of the total vote count, but won on seats won, Gerry Mandering much.

          That was the turning point where another fairer voting system considered, MMP was determined by referendum

      • woodart 9.1.2

        I think we need five or more parties in parliament for our population to be represented properly. dont agree with most of act's or nationals philosphies, but they have a place in parliament.

        • Just Is

          I agree, democracy is about Representation, which is why I don't complain about the current situation with NZF and the Greens, more view points are being recognized in this Coalition than any other time in our history, compromise is the important feature, accepting we need to respect others needs and wants.

          • weka

            I also favour more parties in parliament and government. The problem with NZF is that they actively work against parties whose policies they don't support and they do this in ways that undermine MMP and representation. They're not good at sharing power. I put most of that on Peters, although I would expect similar from Jones. Martin is good value.

            The ability of centrist parties to wield far more power than their vote should give them is a failing of MMP. I hope NZF are out of parliament the next term, or at least out of government, so that we can have a break from that dynamic.

            • Just Is

              Agreed, And, I'd like to see a Labour Green Coalition, even if Labour could Govern alone, the increase in representation would be very good for Democracy.

              We will wait and see what voters decide, but I'm optimistic.

  9. Adrian 10

    Somebody at the Herald has gone rogue. The headline reads “Hamish Walker reveals Covid patients detail to prove he isn’t racist “. This could be straight out of the Civilian or the Betoota Advocate, I couldn’t find anywhere in the story where this quote could have come from.

    You couldn’t make this shit up, now please pass the popcorn, this is going to get ugly.

    • I Feel Love 10.1

      Maybe the media are sick of being used, they all seem to be distancing themselves from National at the moment. RNZ were quick to.

    • Bearded Git 10.2

      The problem for walker is that according to interviews on Morning Report it proved nothing of the sorry i.e. the names are not Indian Pakistani or Korean

      • greywarshark 10.2.1

        He could claim that everyone's looking at names – it isn't racist it's just simply research about ethnicity. https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/406281/top-baby-surname-reflects-new-zealand-s-changing-demographics

        According to the Department of Internal Affairs, the most common surname for babies born in New Zealand last year was Singh. Smith comes in a close second, while another Indian name Kaur is the third most common, ahead of Wilson, Williams and Brown.

        (Stats Labour was attempting to mine to get some evidence of National's invasion of the asians into housing in Auckland. Leaving many houses not lived in much. Remember that and the hoo hah.)

    • weka 10.3

      It's in micky's post. Young reports that her journo colleague was given the list, and the colleague understood the rationale was the racism defence.

      NZH also just stuck the knife into Boag.


  10. Ad 11

    Keisha Lance Bottoms tests positive for Coronavirus.

    That would mean she is unable to get within a football field of Biden.

    I'm presuming this hands the VP slot to Kamala Harris (Duckworth is a bit late).

  11. Reality 12

    Surely RNZ and other media will not have Michelle Boag on any more political panels. What an odious human being she is. She's been skulking round for years and it is surely time she was removed from any boards and organisations. She's untrustworthy.

    • Just Is 12.1

      Reality, are there any members in the National Party that are Trustworthy?

      I'm unable to name anyone.

      • Janice 12.1.1

        I guess if Nikki Kay keeps Boag on her re-election team, we will learn just how upset the NP is with her. Just the fact that Nikki employed her in the first place shows how entrenched Boag and her dirty politics is with the party.

        • Janice

          Wow that was quick. Her resignation just announced.

          • Morrissey

            Kay has resigned? At least someone in the National Party front bench has a sense of honour.

        • Just Is

          Yes, and indicative just how corrupt the whole party is.

          Rotten to the Core

      • greywarshark 12.1.2

        There has been an Elworthy in the Gnats for a long time. Perhaps that was as close to to T for trustworthy as they could get.

  12. Muttonbird 13

    Farrar watch:

    ‘Muller strong, blah, blah, Walker lone agent, blah, blah, National innocent, blah, blah.’

    • Just Is 13.1

      Muller Strong.

      NZs still waiting to see him exibit that characteristic.

    • Morrissey 13.2

      Keep up the good work Muttonbird. I've been locked out from that sewer since last year.

    • Leighton 13.3

      This might be a better point of DPF's had the campaign chair for the deputy lead and ex-PRESIDENT OF THE PARTY not directly aided and abetted Hamish.

  13. Muttonbird 14

    Uh-oh. "MediaWorks boss Michael Anderson resigns."


    Mediaworks lurching from crisis to crisis. Whatever next?

    • Morrissey 14.1

      Other than the death of the world's worst sports station, Radio Sport, this is the best news to come out about New Zealand media for a long time.

      Next up: Richard Harman chokes to death on scampi at a dinner hosted by Luke Harding for him and Tova O'Brien and Dame Kim Hill.

      • greywarshark 14.1.1

        Morrissey hold back your evil eye from Dame Kim Hill – she is worth a hundred of you.

        • Morrissey

          Even when she's uncritically retailing officially sanctioned state propaganda and giving soft-soap, fawning interviews to the likes of Luke Harding and Jonathan Freedland?

          • Drowsy M. Kram

            Maybe not “a hundred of you” (shudder wink), but at least one. Like you, I don't agree with everything Kim Hill says/does on RNZ, but "A good act does not wash out the bad, nor a bad act the good." Look for 'the good' Morrissey, it's easier to discern in Hill's ability and deeds than it is in some of your other targets, IMHO.

            • Morrissey

              I agree with you, and I have indeed heaped praise on Ms Hill for the many fine things she has achieved in broadcasting—including her reading out my occasional emails live on air.

              Her propensity to recycle the most absurd propaganda is a concern, however. I expect better of her.

      • OnceWasTim 14.1.2

        I wouldn't mind hearing you as a guest on RNZ "Saturday" with Kim Hill. Perhaps discussing the meaning of life and the Universe, or the male ego. All txt feedback to be read out in full. That'd be worth a listen

        • gsays

          That's not fair!

          What has Kim Hill done to deserve that ordeal?

          Sorry Mozza, I couldn't resist.

          • Morrissey

            Sorry Mozza, I couldn't resist.

            Ouch! Ya got me, and ya got me good. crying

        • OnceWasTim

          HEEEEELP! Mozza. I take it all back! Did/Are you listening to today's Walruss' "The Panel".

          It's fucking excruciating darling – but I'll persevere . Put a drizzle of Olive Oil and a bit of Sour Cream on it, shove it in the fridge till Sunday and call it a National Party Brunch

          • Morrissey

            I heard it, Tim. Most of it was pretty good, I thought, with the only bum note coming from the mouth of ex-Hong Kong resident Jack Yang toward the end of the program. He rightly made a negative assessment of Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam—but then he said this: "She makes Trump look like Obama!" That comment would suggest that he is ignorant of, or has chosen to ignore, the fact that President Obama presided over an empire of oppression, illegal surveillance and state suppression—including assassination—of dissenters.

            Yang showed the same crass mis-judgment as those pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong who are so foolish and ignorant as to wave the Union Jack as if it is anything other than a symbol of imperialism—especially in China.

            Perhaps the worst aspect of it, though, was that none of the Panelists—neither Wallace Chapman, nor Phil O’Reilly, nor Catherine Robertson—saw fit to comment on, let alone challenge, Yang’s spectacularly foolish comment.

            • OnceWasTim

              I think I probably meant that "'prePanel" where someone was discussing their cooking prowess. It wasn't Wallace Chapman, Phil O’Reilly, or Catherine Robertson. I had to turn it off after that.

              • Morrissey

                That was Robert Kelly. He's a pretty bright fellow, I think. I agree with you about that cooking drivel, though—it was nothing more than riffing on some airheaded article from the Grauniad.

                Still, we should be glad that at least they weren't using the pre-Panel show to sneer at the suffering of political prisoners. Not today anyway.

    • Just Is 14.2

      Lets hope Insolvency

  14. Muttonbird 15


    Kaye also told RNZ Boag no longer has a role with the party.


  15. Morrissey 16

    Federated Filthy Farmers strikes again

    Some years ago the polluters sacked Sir Kerry Burke from the Canterbury Regional Council and succeeded in abolishing all democratic input into water regulation. They're at it again. No surprise to see one Michael Laws wielding the axe for them.


    • Graeme 16.1

      Well she's gone and a farmer is back in charge


      How long Noone lasts will be seen, this isn't making the problem go away. Being anointed ORC chieftain / chieftainess is the ultimate hospital pass in New Zealand local government at present. You are highly unlikely to be able to please anyone, let alone get consensus or even a majority. The problems the council has around the old water permits from the mining era are close to insurmountable.

      • greywarshark 16.1.1

        She stood bravely against the attack of the bovines, don't know if she had a cape or not, but it sounded a classy show. About Marion Hobbs on Radionz earlier. Was having Michael Laws behind her a good move or not?


        Dunedin and blue toilet seats? They are at 'it' again with Labour and women, down there in Conservative and Mean Dunedin!

        They weren’t provide hospital birthing facilities in the south earlier on. I hope that this anti-woman thing is more apparent than real.

        • Graeme

          I wouldn’t go that far at all, the water permit issue is going to break ORC, and it’s chair, no matter who is in charge.

          This was an intractable issue 30 years ago which is why the deemed permits were extinguished by the RMA in 1991, to expire this year. The council and permit holders have had 30 years (in reality more like 50 or 60) to work out a solution and really aren’t even started. All the ‘solutions’ have fallen to bits pretty quickly and council has ended up in positions that were always going to end up being vigorously challenged.

          Expect the big stick, either commissioners or a legislated solution, to come out early next year.

  16. adam 17

    Ghislaine Maxwell suicide bets are now open.

    I'm calling 2 weeks.

    Good luck.

    [FFS! Do you realise how unbelievably insensitive this comment is? What’s worse is that you have form making comments that are way off the mark and/or insulting. You have been warned before. Take the rest of the week off – Incognito]

    • Incognito 17.1

      See my Moderation note @ 12:19 PM.

    • left for dead 17.2

      You disapoint me again Adam,call yourself a christian,so-called I'd say. She may well be the worst person about but take stock man.Alex

    • weka 17.3

      I agree with Incog and lfd here. Even if there is less than zero compassion for GM, there are other suicidal people to think about or the families of suicidal people or those who have killed themselves. People reading on TS.

  17. Muttonbird 18

    Walker off to London. Oops, can't do that anymore!

    Walker also tried to gag Muller on Monday!


    Also the chair of Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust, Simon Tompkins, had this to say:

    As an administrative resource, Ms Boag has never had access to any clinical or patient data held by ARHT. ARHT is an integral part of the health system and we are entrusted with information about our patients which is properly protected by protocols which only enable access to those who need this data to care for the patient. We have reviewed these protocols and are confident that none of this patient information has been subject to any privacy breach

    Interestinger and interestinger.

    • Graeme 18.1

      Walker admitted to Muller on Monday midday he was behind the private details of active Covid-19 cases being leaked to media, sparking a Government inquiry.

      Muller told the Clutha-Southland MP he needed to own up publicly.

      It's understood later that afternoon – after the Government announced the inquiry – Muller received a legal letter on Walker's behalf.

      It asked the National Party leadership not to out Walker citing concerns about his privacy.

      WTF (my bold)

  18. Dennis Frank 19

    Youngster must've got the inside word from the hierarchy: https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/300052102/covid19-leak-national-mp-hamish-walker-to-step-down-at-election-over-leak-saga

    “Rachel Bird, the National Party’s Southern Regional Chair, has received a letter from Hamish confirming he will withdraw as the National Party candidate for Southland,” Muller said. “There was a clear breach of trust, which goes against the values National holds as a party.”

    “The National Party Board will still meet today to discuss the selection of a new candidate. Walker’s seat, soon to be named “Southland”, is an extremely safe seat for the National Party, meaning whoever wins the nomination is likely to win the seat.

    • Incognito 19.1

      Nikki Kaye might need an “extremely safe seat”.

      • Poission 19.1.1

        Auckland central not being a safe place.

        A 32-year-old man will be charged after briefly absconding from a managed isolation facility in Auckland yesterday evening.

        The man has this morning tested positive for Covid-19 and has been moved to the Jet Park quarantine facility.

        Around 6.50pm the man escaped through a fenced area at the Stamford Plaza when he was out smoking, as a section of external fencing was being replaced. Security attempted to follow the man but were unsuccessful in locating him.

        Police were called immediately, and enquiries were underway to locate the man including reviewing CCTV footage and undertaking substantial area searches, before he returned to the facility where he was then interviewed by Police.

        Enquiries have established the man went to Countdown on Victoria Street West on foot and purchased items at a self-service checkout, before returning to the hotel around 8pm.


        • RedBaronCV

          Unbelievable. Throw everything at him including a criminal conviction and loss of residency status if applicable? No wonder towns don't want them. But more seriously is it time to put quarantine into prefabs/camper vans at large green field sites at where the local population is low? . Uncomfortable yes – but lacking any exterior attractions and people to infect.

          Our largest cities can't keep going through this roller coaster of potential exposure

          • Hooch

            Yep was just about to come on and say the same thing re: residency status. If you are not willing to follow the rules when coming back to NZ then you deserve the kitchen sink thrown at you.

            Campervans in Waiouru or Ohakea. Don’t like it? Don’t come.

            • RedBaronCV

              Ohakea might work – it's got a decent runway and a fair walk to the sin city of Palmy.

              But seriously the actual cost and chilling effect of these breaches on major population centers (without the disease even getting out) plus the stress and personal costs on anyone this brushed past is pretty high.

              The risk of it of a huge out break must be exponentially higher if the breach takes place in a city. Must say Melbourne must be tempted to look at putting it's returnees somewhere out of town.

      • Graeme 19.1.2

        Think it’ll be a good scrap, they’ll all be after it, tooth and claw with vigorous hissing.

        How ‘safe’ the seat is now, anyone’s guess. Some pretty pissed off people around, and that’s just the National members I’ve run into today.

        • Gabby

          Have no illusions, it's in the bank. Plenty of Hamie's voters won't even think it's a big deal. Break out another blue turnip.

    • weka 19.2

      “There was a clear breach of trust, which goes against the values National holds as a party.”

      Snort. As in, he broke the trust between himself as an MP and the leadership (and probably the DP maestros). National don't hold values around breaching the public's trust. Shall we make a list?

      • Dennis Frank 19.2.1

        It would be helpful if Wayne could elucidate the trust issue. Precisely how is it defined? Is there a relevant clause in whatever a candidate signs up to? Or is there one in the code of conduct?

        Rhetorical questions, perhaps. Someone may point out that MPs are not constrained by any such code of ethics.

        • weka

          Won't that be in an online document?

          • Dennis Frank

            Well, seems to me left/right collusion to defend the privilege system is still unchallenged, since my google look merely found this:

            "The 2018 report makes six recommendations including an MP code of conduct as well as policies which ensure leadership is committed to integrity, including specific ethical leadership." https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/389851/government-rejected-a-code-of-conduct-for-staff-in-2013

            The report said there were a small number of MPs widely known to be serial offenders, but who are protected by the system.

            If Labour wanted to reform the system, they would have adopted the report, I presume. And then announced pending legislation. And then put that to parliament. Unless someone can produce evidence that any of this happened, then it is simply more evidence of the Labour `pretend to be progressive' sham.

  19. Muttonbird 20

    The Public: "Michelle, you have some questions to answer."

    Michelle: “I've already refused to speak to your reporters and it's no good trying to hang outside waiting for me, because I'm staying here and I'm not going out, so don't bother wasting your time.”


  20. RedBaronCV 21

    By going at the election I assume Walker gets the three month payout for those who don't return.

    So us poor bloody taxpayers are gong to be fronting his "redundancy"?

    I imagine by resigning he is in a very tricky way trying to do one final rip off of the system for his own benefit supported by the Nat party.

    They just can't help themselves can they.
    Neither ethical or moral.

    • gsays 21.1

      I would imagine we paid for both Walker and Muller's advice. Unless you can get a QC through legal aid…

      • RedBaronCV 21.1.1

        Well party funds should have done that- but as you say quite possibly not. Perhaps our media should tote up the taxpayer subsidy for this stuff.

  21. Cinny 22

    Every person who has come into work today has mentioned how disgusted they are with the nat party dirty politics. Some have also mentioned the lack of leadership from muller concerning his loose and leaking party.

  22. Dennis Frank 23

    "Former Prime Minister Helen Clark says cannabis won't make your teeth fall out or turn your hair green". Lotsa folk will be so relieved by that.

    Her comments come on the back of a new poll showing a tight race for the September referendum on legalising cannabis for recreational use, with 48 per cent support in favour and 43 per cent opposed. https://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=12346439

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • Just Is 23.1

      Dennis, I don't know if polls on this Topic are really indicative of the public mood, given the nature of the referendum and the fact that it's use is prohibited

      There is 9% undecided, could just easily be those who don't wish to disclose their position.

    • Dennis Frank 23.2

      To the moderator: Please shift this to OM where I thought I was putting it! Sorry 😢

  23. maggieinnz 24

    Read through this article in the NZHerald on the latest escapee from managed isolation. I think the reporter copy and pasted all his notes without proofreading anything. Double-ups and random topic changes mid-page. It's a bit disorientating, to say the least.

    Shoppers turned away

    Hungry Aucklanders are being turned away from Countdown Victoria St West in the CBD today.

    The store is closed for cleaning after the country's latest case of Covid-19 visited the store yesterday, with a security guard standing in the doorway turning people away.

    The security guard said he had been told it will be closed for "at least a couple of hours" but wasn't sure when it would reopen.

    Dozens of people have been turned away from the supermarket, which's lights are on but it's roller doors are down, and told to visit other grocery stores nearby. Most people seem unaware of the recent news the latest Covid-19 case visited the story yesterday.

    Hipkins wouldn't be drawn on details of the leaked privacy details of Covid-19 patients, saying that he awaited the outcome of the Heron inquiry, which would also look at who had the information and why they had that information.

    There is no community transmission. It has been 68 days since the last case of community transmission.

    Asked if Hamish Walker and Michelle Boag should foot the bill for the Heron investigation, Hipkins wouldn't say, adding only that he thought their behaviour was "unethical and unacceptable".

    "We do want to lift our game," he said when asked about the low use of the NZ Covid Tracker app scanning QR codes.

    "We want everybody to play their part, download the app and scan the codes."

  24. RedBaronCV 25

    Good to see the government support for our pacific neighbours – poor sods have to go through our winter after all. And I do hope we continue to facilitate returning those who want to go home. Same as we did for Vanuatu. And they had better be paid decent wages.


    I also wonder if we should be doing a bit more direct aid. Tonga passed a budget with it’s largest deficit ever at around $23m less than that dreadful flag referendum

  25. greywarshark 26

    Trending good in France. https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/world/420473/french-pm-edouard-philippe-resigns

    Jul.3/20 The elections revealed surging support for the Green party and underlined Macron's troubles with left-leaning voters. The only bright spot for Macron was Philippe's own victory in the northern port city of Le Havre. (Philippe Prime Minister [former investment banker] who has stood down at present.)

  26. greywarshark 27

    New flu found in China.


    It emerged recently and is carried by pigs, but can infect humans, they say.

    The researchers are concerned the virus could mutate further to spread easily from person to person, and trigger a global outbreak…

    The new virus strain, which the researchers call G4 EA H1N1, can grow and multiply in the cells that line the human airways.

    They found evidence of recent infection starting in people who worked in abattoirs and the swine industry in China.

  27. lprent 28

    Updated: There are a couple of changes to the comment editor today. You can find out what they are by hovering your mouse over them.

    Don't abuse them. Especially the images one. I will land hard on perps if I find large images anywhere. And then I'll write the code to prevent a future size issues.

    Spelling: It turns out that there is a way to correct comment spelling within the comment editor. If you see a spelling error highlighted by your browser, then hold down the Ctrl and right click on the word. You will get your browsers normal context menu.

    This probably doesn't help the person who brought the issue up as they specified that they're disabled. But it does provide me a string to find out how to make this the normal behaviour on a right click.

    • Incognito 28.1


      Do you have a rough guide for size limit of images?

      • lprent 28.1.1

        550px wide is a good bet. 600px is the max – but that will only work on level 1 indented comments.

        Leave the sizes alone and the aspect ratio won't be disturbed..

    • Andre 28.2

      Background colours and colours for textwhat could go wrong?

      • lprent 28.2.1

        Heaps. But generally I find most commenters just use things in limited emphasis.

        And it does allow me to identify idiots when given a idiot detection tool.


    • Muttonbird 28.3


      • Muttonbird 28.3.1

        The above image is 500x333px so I'm picking the desktop format allows for about 550px wide max otherwise it is clipped and you can’t see half of it.

        Happy to provide notes on how to resize and post if anyone is interested.

        • lprent

          The comment area is hardwired at 600px wide, and effectively diminishes to around 500px after indenting down 10 levels. It won't go past the 600px horizontally. But will go to infinite height – which is what I will be looking for.

    • weka 28.4

      Please tell me gifs aren't enabled.

      Lots of people don't understand image size (I've removed quite a few in recent months and replaced them with the URLs). Just saying.

      • Incognito 28.4.1

        So true!

        • weka

          I don't. eg how to download an image off a google search so that it is within certain limits. Get caught on this with posts every so often, and it's a pain with the square ones for the FP.

          • Incognito

            I don’t either, it is beyond mere mortals with only rudimentary computer skills.

            But I do like the idea of having an excuse for banning people 😉

            I propose we include the indiscriminate use of non-breaking space too; it should become policy 😀

            • weka

              haha, right there with you on all that matey.

              Some potential for moderator crayons too 😈

              (we're only joking folks).

            • lprent

              That one is more a filter problem. It is an artifact of the editor.

              Same with trailing paragraphs as well.

            • McFlock

              lol yeah I'm guilty of that on the trailing end of some comments – if I edit and rephrase a lot, sometimes there are lots of spaces at the end that aren't obvious when submitting with the wysiwyg, and sometimes I don't spot them if the comment was near the bottom of the scroll. Result: big empty space.

              I know you've had to trim some of mine, I seem to recall – soz

              • lprent

                Solution 1: display level

                function substitute_nbsp($content)
                return str_replace( ' ', ' ', $content );
                add_filter( 'get_comment_text', 'substitute_nbsp', 98 );

                That is pretty elegant because it will fix all existing comments. It effectively makes all comments trailing lines empty whitespace. Even it it has paragraphs because HTML treats empty or whitespace only paragraphs as being nondisplayable..

      • lprent 28.4.2

        I'll have a think about forcing max dimensions.

    • weka 28.5

      testing the spell chck, still doesn't work on Firefox mac.

      But it does work in the Edit Comment box (had to use the contextual menu to turn spell check off and then back on).

      • Graeme 28.5.1

        Try command right / two finger click, that brought it up on Chrome mac for me

        Choice having a spell checker again, but probably there all the time

        • weka

          perfect, thank-you! I don't use the multiple fingers thing so didn't even think of that.

        • lprent

          Yep. Pays to raise issues because I usually don't see them myself.

          While I can't deal with them in a timely fashion. You often find that others can.

          weka and others will post them into the backend system in case I don't see them myslef.

  28. Whispering Kate 29

    The latest person jumping the fence in an isolation facility was in the dedicated smoking area. This person may not be a smoker but why can't they issue smokers who come into the hotels with a standard package of Quitline patches for the duration of their stay. I believe the prisons did this to ease inmates off the nicotine when they stopped smoking in the prisons. They are only staying there for 14 days for goodness sake and I know from a family member that these patches work. There are also lozenges that can be used while using the patches as an additional relief.

    To me it seems such a simple solution to an ongoing serious problem. This latest escapee may have been able to infect a lot of people in the 70 mins they were awol. We will have another Melbourne at this rate and what a terrible thing to happen just over an ungrateful person who felt entitled to get out of Dodge just because he/she felt like it.

    • greywarshark 29.1

      Good one – send an email? – something in print with your idea to some body doing covid watch. Practical and good.

      • Whispering Kate 29.1.1

        I think I will email Chris Hipkins himself. Apparently he is a very capable Cabinet Minister and has the Health Portfolio and gets things done. I just wondered if the Humans Rights Commission would say its a no no and abuse of their rights. Prisoners don't seem to have many rights so its okay for them (sarc).

        Will get onto it. I did email Jacinda Adern once to her personal Parliamentary email and she never acknowledged it. I was a bit upset by it put it down to her being very busy etc etc. I still think she's the best we have right now though.

        • greywarshark

          I got an automatic reply and later a thank you from the office. But that was early on. I think she looks thinner round the face now, sort of lean like a hard-running marathon runner, and probably hasn't even got time to do up her shoe laces. Nobody does it better I think.


          She probably sings too!

          • Whispering Kate

            Well Grey I have mailed the Hon.Chris Hipkins at the Cabinet Office and put forward this suggestion. I have explained about prisoners having the patches issued etc and that the five million would appreciate it if he would seriously consider this. I explained that this escapee who was asymptomatic but positive could set of a community transmission and we could end up like Melbourne and in lockdown again.

            We shall see. If patches start to be issued well that will be really great. I am not holding my breath. Chris Hipkins apparently does get things done and is highly capable so fingers crossed.

            • greywarshark

              That could do a lot of good. They are getting worried. I heard Megan Woods talking about bracelets and apps and so on so might reduce that need with a patch!

              But I was just listening to The Detail on Radionz and it was about P and meth, and don't know much about them though I have heard that they are just a phone call away in China and it's all laid on like ordering groceries from the supermarket. But the journalist and treatment helpers say the country is riddled with it. People like that apparently lose all their reasoning control and ability to delay action and thinking of outcomes. So we haven't faced up to the problem here and it's got bad. Apparently terribly addictive. The right wing don't care of course, being so fucking superior they immediately label anyone who has fallen on the way as useless losers, lesser people and not worth helping, so tend to treat too little and too late. Of course it is a bit different if it is one of their own, but never mind.

              So the Covid-19 need to have something sorted for when one of them comes along.

        • weka

          People in quarantine are not prisoners and there should be no state capacity to compel them to give up smoking or force them to use nicotine patches. This is most definitely a human rights issue.

          By all means offer people in Q nicotine patches and support for giving up smoking, for those that want it.

          But smoking isn't solely a nicotine addiction, it's also habituated stress and mood management from the physical act. We want people in Q to feel safe, secure and as stress-free as possible, not push them into a mental health crisis.

          I know everyone is hating on the walkabout dude, but has anyone asked him why he did that? Was he hungry? Bored? Stressed? Confused?

          Maybe putting in more supports rather than pillorying people would be a better approach. I still think he should be charged but I think the sentence should be proportionate to what he did. eg putting him in prison for 6 months would be excessive and set a really bad precedent.

          Really interesting to see all the inner authoritarians come out over this.

    • Ed 29.2

      Time to enforce a much stricter regime for the quarantine process.

      • greywarshark 29.2.1

        Whispering Kate I heard talk about Nicotine patches this morning. So your email may have either prompted that or reinforced a thought to do this.

        weka I think you are taking an impractical line. People in quarantine are virtual prisoners, they have to be for their own safety and that of others. And if they won’t comply then the virtual situation will become a real imprisonment.

        But I agree talking about six months jail is just the same stupid knee-jerk response that ineffective boobs default to. We are second to the USA for the quick way we throw people into prison and thinkers have been calling for different methods for decades. I think the reaction from Gnats I think it was Judith Collins, or was it Anne Tolley, was to put two to a cell, leading to sexual and violent crime so being complicit in creating a continuing vicious climate for prisoners.

  29. greywarshark 30

    Just reading about ongoing from covid.


    Jun.29/20 Patients who were in the intensive care unit or on a ventilator for weeks will need to spend extensive time in rehab to regain mobility and strength. "It can take up to seven days for every one day that you're hospitalized to recover that type of strength," Khan said. "It's harder the older you are, and you may never get back to the same level of function."…

    While much of the focus has been on the minority of patients who experience severe disease, doctors increasingly are looking to the needs of patients who were not sick enough to require hospitalization, but are still suffering months after first becoming infected…

    Dr Igor Koralnik, chief of neuro-infectious diseases at Northwestern Medicine in Chicago, reviewed current scientific literature and found about half of patients hospitalized with Covid-19 had neurological complications, such as dizziness, decreased alertness, difficulty concentrating, disorders of smell and taste, seizures, strokes, weakness and muscle pain.

  30. greywarshark 31


    Who is the guy with a huge black beard? It doesn't look right in a political sphere, looks like a bandit with this face half covered. Not the open honest look we hope for from pollies which will be followed by the same style in action! And if it is a minder, he's an in-your-face one.

  31. greywarshark 32

    I'll just make a warning here. There are peculiar ways our minds work and we will have often noticed that but will forget and go on and normalise stuff and not really learn.

    If we were too triumphant and talked in too demoralising a way against Muller, various right wingers wavering on National, who have no interest in how the country or the poor or the young or anyone but themselves, is getting on – they might feel sorry for the poor guy and vote for him. You are being so nasty to him blah blah.

    There is still time for flip flops. Some might remember Citizens for Rowling, an attempt to get people to think rationally for the Labour Party but the voters did not go the path that was expected. Think about the irrational in us all. People who have squashed ordinary citizens like ants, will get very hurt at being called useless or served cold tea, or their dedicated supporters will.

  32. I see we have another scumbag wandering off from quarantine, the second in a week,

    this time he had covid 19. Bad luck in you we downtown Auckland.

    Chippy and Megan had better get their shit together, they need to make an example of this bastard.

    • Incognito 33.1

      Bring back the pillory, I say.

    • Ed1 33.2

      Quarantine and managed isolation are in hotels, not prisons – putting secure 6 foot fences around them all is a huge expense which should have not been necessary. The idiot that got out will be charged, and the episode will be reviewed, but it was the sort of risk that the government has been warning us about from the start. It is sad that this one incident will probably cost a huge amount of money to ensure it never happens again; but that is less important than the hope that nobody else gets infected.

      • ianmac 33.2.1

        Suppose one answer is to lock everyone in rooms with no out of room experiences at all. Guard each floor with guards armed with tasers. The hotels are not prisons but depend on a measure of trust, unless you are one hoping to support the Opposition plan to undermine Government.

        • greywarshark

          I listened to someone under that regime ianmac. There was a guard on each floor. They were well provided for.

          In The Melbourne housing towers they were suddenly locked down and were not allowed to go down for food deliveries which had to stay outside a circle. Drones good for this use I think. And the lifts often break down. Dreadful conditions. Vertical virtual prisons.

      • Naki man 33.2.2

        "It is sad that this one incident " It's not one incident it's the second time in a week.

        He should be paying a $10,000 fine minimum,

    • observer 33.3

      "Chippy and Megan had better get their shit together, they need to make an example of this bastard."

      Fortunately they won't, and can't. His fate will be decided by an independent court.

      I imagine if he gets fined but not jailed the opposition will be calling our justice system "shambolic" and demanding the government take charge of sentencing.

      • In Vino 33.3.1

        No – this 'scumbag' 'bastard' is risking all our lives!

        Bring back throwing from the Tarpeian Rocks! Effective and economical, and never shambolic! Less trouble than hanging or guillotining…

        What about the low-life who cynically publish private stuff, Naki-man?

    • mauī 33.4

      But Odd Mullet is so good at this, where is he when you need him! 😆

  33. sumsuch 34

    I don't follow surface politics, I follow the ocean currents. I'm thankful for a National leader who was schooled with majority Maori. Thankful for our Right, who aren't crazy, for the rich's rule.

    You're all surface details people above.

    The task we face now is more or less impossible but we must face it full on. Climate change extinguishment of all of us.

    The Left are the thoroughly rational side of politics. This decade is the 1939 of our time. Why are we concentrating on surface pond weed?!

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