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Open mike 08/01/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 8th, 2011 - 43 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

It’s open for discussing topics of interest, making announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

Comment on whatever takes your fancy.

The usual good behaviour rules apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

43 comments on “Open mike 08/01/2011 ”

  1. logie97 1

    Education and National Standards.

    Mixed messages coming from the UK where they introduced Tolley’s Standards a few years back. Seems they might be getting the message that not everyone can expect to be a brain surgeon after all and that they simply will not meet the Academic Grade being trumpeted here. (Can’t believe they would admit that “Standards” don’t work… surely they haven’t given up on a certain group in society.) Or is common sense prevailing at last

    • ianmac 1.1

      Logie. It must be really tough for a kid to not only be told repeatedly that you are below standard (stupid?) but have to endure more and more of stuff irrelevant to your ability or success. (Let me out! I quit!)
      So the real role of Education should be to explore and develop your strengths so that options become clear, rather than follow a prescription.

  2. Deadly_NZ 2

    And there goes another 12 million bucks


    They may have to pay for their own tickets, but i bet we (tax payers) pay for everything else so, the smiley wavey one can have his photo op’s for his CV.

    • Tigger 2.1

      No amounts of VIPs can improve a rugby match. Would rather see some decent tries than that midget French leader or some balding royal. Pay for your own holiday you tossers.

  3. prism 3

    Good interview between Kim Hill and Daniel Ellsberg who is a brave man who was determined to expose the lies of the Administration on the Vietnam War to United States of America citizens.
    He also mentions 9/11 and referred to the information that the USA government had gathered and chose not to prioritise. Also numbers of people were not called to give evidence to the National Commission on Terorist Attacks. This is no doubt the background to the doubts that continue about this tragedy,
    He comments that Barak Obama has not proved to be a more transparent president and has used a procedure to control information more than other presidents.
    He also comments on the deviations from the USA Constitution. It seems to me that while having a written Constitution in this country would be good, it is possible that becoming a Republic would lead to us having vainglorious men and women like those who are leading the USA. He mentions how close Nixon came to seriously considering nuclear strikes, and says his tapes reveal thinking like those of a gangster.


  4. whistlerspa 4

    The women tennis shriekers were at work again at the ASB tournament. I can’t watch tennis on TV anymore without muting the volume, and will invariably support the player who doesn’t do it.

    I heard that it’s cheating anyway as it disguises the spin of the ball as it hits the racquet, and so doesn’t allow an opponent to predict the direction etc of the returning shot. To the TV interviewed tournament spokesperson who tried to explain it away as due to the power that they put into a shot I say no way. I noticed that Sharapova wasn’t doing it during her warm up on the day I watched her but reverted the minute a real point was played.

    I think that the WTA should have nipped this in the bud years ago and banned it outright.

    • MrSmith 4.1

      If someone from another planet just happened to arrive at the Tennis before we got a chance to find out where they came from they would probably die of laughter, perhaps this is what the game is all about, it’s really is a defense against alien invasion, we are hoping they will all laugh themselves to death, I just think they will take one look at the game and say NO sign of intelligent life down here lets try another planet.

  5. Wyndham 5


    Hear Hear !

  6. Pascal's bookie 6

    The paper of record.


    I can haz editorz plz?

  7. Deadly_NZ 7

    This from what I call the “Only in America” it could only happen there. Nothing political . I read the title and went What the and had to read on.


    No offense meant to anybody.

  8. A former MP has been jailed for 18 months for falsifying his expenses, the first British parliamentarian to be convicted over a 2009 scandal that engulfed the nation’s political system.

    The former Labour Party MP had claimed 22,650 pounds for rent for houses owned by himself and by his mother…


    and how does this differ from Blinglish and his wife’s trust in claiming rent for a property they owned for 10 years or so and costing the taxpayer shitloads more than 30k over the years ?

    by the same token, i’d lock Bill up for 5 yrs and confiscate his house.

    • Deadly_NZ 8.1

      Yeah But Bill has the smiley one covering for him.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.2

      by the same token, i’d lock Bill up for 5 yrs and confiscate his house.

      That’s what needs to happen. When I was growing up I was assured that crime doesn’t pay but looking at some of the people in our parliament it sure seems that crime does pay.

      • ZeeBop 8.2.1

        English has already paid heavily, losing any chance of being PM by being so cheap.
        If he had only upped his game and taken kiwis for millions by become a currency broker.

    • Irascible 8.3

      The BBC world news gave the story headline coverage. It is interesting, too, that the media in the UK were instrumental in keeping these rorts in the forefront of public scrutiny and thus ensuring the cases were prosecuted to this point. Compare that to NZ where the story is raised, given a little coverage then shelved because it is no longer news worthy.
      Key should be held to account for covering for English & English should be hauled before the courts based on the UK legal decision… in keeping with NACTs policy of staying “british”.

    • john 8.4

      Hi Pollywog
      I agree 100% Actnat answer to their own class. We need Politics where they,the politicians, understand they are servants of all the people and answerable to the people and… when they do corrupt actions they must be prosecuted the same as that other abuse of power when Catholic priests step over the line they are pursued and prosecuted. Most kiwis don’t want ACC privatized yet in their contempt they still go for it! This sort of corruption has totally ruined the once great nation formerly known as the United States of America now just…. the U$

  9. Draco T Bastard 9

    It only takes one bad Apple

    First porn, then politics and culture

    Pulling WikiLeaks from the iTunes store might have surprised some people; but there have already been hints that beneath the shiny, sleek designs and hyper cool image, Apple harbors censorial inclinations.

    To begin with, when the iPad was launched, Jobs made a point of declaring that it would be free of pornography. “Freedom from porn,” he declare proudly. “Yep, freedom.”

    You don’t have to be a fan of pornography to understand the implications of one person or corporation prohibiting a consumer from consuming legal content on their products.

    It seems that capitalists are becoming even more censorious and dictatorial that the “state”.

    • Descendant Of Smith 9.1

      And that’s not in the least bit surprising.

      The selectiveness of charity versus generalised welfare is another obvious aspect of this mentality. given the hate most of them espouse about sole parents it’s difficult to see how they would ever be supported in a meaningful way through charity – you could then add whoever you like to that list that represent individual dislikes.

      I remember reading some years ago – pre-internet – about the growth in magazines for women re: craft and cross-stitch and quilting etc as being driven by a group of fundamentalist christians as a way of encouraging women back where they belong – in the home.

      The difference in expectation of morality from the wealthy (liberally sowing wild oats and having mistresses) to the working class who are supposed to be monogamous and if not they are some moral outcast has always struck me as particularly hypocritical.

      • Colonial Viper 9.1.1

        I remember reading some years ago – pre-internet – about the growth in magazines for women re: craft and cross-stitch and quilting etc as being driven by a group of fundamentalist christians as a way of encouraging women back where they belong – in the home.

        Given that we have been placed in an economic system which makes it financially impossible for the majority of families to have one adult stay in the home and look after the children full time, I wouldn’t worry too much.

      • Pascal's bookie 9.1.2

        The difference in expectation of morality from the wealthy (liberally sowing wild oats and having mistresses) to the working class who are supposed to be monogamous and if not they are some moral outcast has always struck me as particularly hypocritical.

        Amanda Marcotte smashes seven kinds of shit of a recent expression of this concept found in the editorial pages of the uber liberal NYT:



  10. Draco T Bastard 10

    And the US Administration gets even more oppressive:

    “It’s not just about my information. It’s a warning for anyone who had anything to do with WikiLeaks. It is completely unacceptable for the US justice department to flex its muscles like this. I am lucky, I’m a representative in parliament. But what of other people? It’s my duty to do whatever I can to stop this abuse.”

    Yep, showing that the rulers are corrupt is, apparently, illegal.

  11. Draco T Bastard 11

    And a video about banks from nef.

  12. Draco T Bastard 12

    Oh, look at that, another study proving that more poverty increases crime and NACT are still working to lower wages and increase the prison population.

    Overall, the researchers contend that social disorder and crime stem from the same sources, especially concentrated poverty and low collective efficacy. Fighting social disorder as a means to fight crime thus does little good if these common factors are ignored, wrote Sampson and Raudenbush.

  13. Carol 13

    There was an item on TV3 news tonight about research showing that the average salary in Wellington is over $70,000. So their conclusion is that things are going well for workers in NZ.

    I think this is the research they were talking about:


    In fact, they’ve estimated the average salary from ads on the Seek website. Sounds like a lot of propaganda to me to make Kiwis thing the job situation is way better than it actually is.


    * National average: $69,140.00.

    * Wellington average: $74,392.33.

    * Auckland average: $71,103.33.

    * Southland average: $62,797.97.

    * Otago average: $58,888.67.

    * Marlborough: $52,785.00.

    Figures based on Seek.co.nz job listings.

    • uke 13.1

      As far as avergage income levels go, I think one needs to compare the mean and the median. I imagine the median income would be significantly less.

      • Carol 13.1.1

        Yes, the difference between median and mean is important. But the whole exercise seems to be skewed in more ways than one. How can it be possible to estimate the “average” salary people are actually earning by looking at job advertisements? Also, the “averages” were calculated this way:

        Seek spokeswoman Alexandra McCabe said an average was taken from all the different categories – lower, medium and high salaries – to ensure a “really accurate representation [salaries] of jobs”.

        So it seems to me TV3 & the NZ Herald are reporting on a meaningless load of statistics as though they show something about the “average” wages Kiwis are actually earning.

        This is how TV3 News starts their print version of the story:


        There’s positive news on the financial front, with a new survey finding the average New Zealand wage has risen $600 since September.

        It’s found the average salary now tops $69, 000, with one city in particular taking home more than most.

        • Colonial Viper

          I hope they keep pushing these kinds of news stories with (as Deadly called them) pseudo pstats. Do you know why?

          Because it will make ordinary people feel *more* like they are falling behind, not *less*.

          • Salsy

            Exactly, as im sure there are a hell of a lot of people – me included – thinking they were average until they read that…

            • Colonial Viper

              Yeah with a bit of math, from those figures the average wage in AKL is apparently $34/hr.

              And in WGN its higher than that. What a friggin joke.

            • Draco T Bastard

              I suspect there’s a lot of people who thought they were well paid (above average) until they read that.

              • Colonial Viper

                Median income in this country is equivalent to being paid $13.20/hr in a full time job. Half the population receives less than that figure.

                Amongst actual workers (excl all beneficiaries/superannuitants etc) the median is still only $19.70/hr. Half of all workers receive less than that.

                Would love them to try and square that circle.

    • logie97 13.2

      Apparently Primary School teachers with a Teaching Diploma are on $54,000 (over 30 percent of the payroll. (They graduated before 1990 when the same course suddenly became a B.Ed)

      Captcha: smallest

    • Deadly_NZ 13.3

      Pseudo figures, for pseudo jobs, for a pseudo government.

  14. Irascible 14

    I came across this Letter to the Editor in an Middle East Newspaper recently. The names have been removed to avoid identifying the country.
    I thought it looked like it had been taken from the Crosby-Textor Style Book issued to the NACT Bloggers and thought that readers of The Standard might appreciate its literary style and content.

    It is a blessing to have a leader like (insert name here)

    (insert name here) has once again proved that he is truly a wise leader. He, in his speech delivered on (insert date here) at (insert place here), thanked the people and different institutions for their steadfast cooperation in implementing his visions and for rebuilding the nation since the (insert event here). The speech showed the leader’s (insert name here) magnanimity. Actually, it is (insert name here) wise policies and vision that have changed the nation. Citizens of (insert country / place here) have only followed the directions of (insert name here). Let the Almighty give him a long and healthy life so he can pave the way for (insert country/place here) further progress and prosperity.

    Yours etc

    • Deadly_NZ 14.1

      Oh goody a game called guess the country.

      Well it’s probably a christian country (reference to the almighty)


  15. Irascible 15

    The Almighty “exists” in both Christian and non Christian countries. The choice is wide open.

  16. Draco T Bastard 16

    Minsky’s 1987 article on Securitisation shows how it’s impossible for ratings agencies 2 B other than fraudulent (pdf) http://bit.ly/hnX7Yb

    Yeah, It’s late I’m gonna bed so I just copy/pasted the tweet. 😛

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