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Open Mike 08/05/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 8th, 2017 - 98 comments
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98 comments on “Open Mike 08/05/2017 ”

  1. Ed 1

    Some facts for your consideration.

    74.1 per cent of Chinese voters voted National in 2014.
    Chinese voter turnout in the 2014 General Elections was 78.5 per cent – higher than the national average of 76.8 per cent.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11851380

    • saveNZ 1.1

      Yep – if you want to know why Natz still are in power… they are importing in voters in record numbers.

      • garibaldi 1.1.1

        This has been a concern of mine for years now. It is not a racial problem as such , it seems to be based more about the ‘type’ of person our policy attracts.
        For me it stands out most with the immigrants from a certain rugby playing nation.

        • DoublePlusGood 1.1.1.1

          And your comment could easily be referencing immigrants from Australia, the United Kingdom, South Africa…

          • saveNZ 1.1.1.1.1

            I’ve noticed that our government seems to favour under educated people from countries that have high corruption and poor human rights in particular for women.

            We already have high family violence rates in NZ, so as well as cutting most funding for the cause, the government has even found a way to try and make that worse in the future by adding people from worse off countries. They are like anti human rights magicians so no wonder many vote National. Or are they trying to get a cultural fit?

  2. Ed 2

    Who is Barry Soper paid by ?
    Supporters of the TPP I sense.
    And he calls himself a journalist.

    ‘Barry Soper: The days when people knew how to protest’

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11850972

  3. Graeme 3

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11848118

    A 20 yr old kid drove his boss’s fully laden bee truck and trailer into the back of a logging truck at 4 am, killing his workmate who was asleep in the passenger seat.

    “An inspection of his work logbook and employment records revealed that Power had breached his cumulative work time and rest time hours on a regular basis between October 20 and November 21, 2015.

    That included him making false statements about the start of his cumulative work day on 34 occasions, the summary of facts revealed.”

    Well, either granny’s got it wrong again, or he worked 34 shifts in 32 days and regularly exceeded 14 hour days in that period. He would have been in zombie land by the time he crashed.

    So, where’s the employer in all this? The boy wouldn’t be working those hours of his own volition, he would have been instructed to and the same with the log book violation.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 3.1

      They didn’t even mention the employer in the article!

      I’m sure there was a great deal of pressure to work those hours too.

      • Graeme 3.1.1

        Employer was / is Arataki Honey Rotorua, mentioned in article, but nothing about prosecution of

      • tinfoilhat 3.1.2

        They did mention the employer in the article – and I’m fairly sure a competent lawyer would have made sure that there was/wasn’t culpability on the part of the employer so as to mitigate the boys sentence.

    • Rosemary McDonald 3.2

      The number that popped out for me from that article was the weight of the logging truck the lad rear ended…134 tonnes.

      More than twice the legal limit.

      • Andre 3.2.1

        Back when I used to regularly use forest roads in that area the word was they were not public roads so weight limits didn’t apply. Rumour was speed limits didn’t apply either, but that may have just been wishful thinking by young male hoons. Certainly there were some very large very heavily laden trucks (much more load than you’d ever see on state highways) going very fast.

        Dunno if that was actually true back then or what the current legal status of those roads really is.

    • JanM 3.3

      I travel between Whangarei and Auckland at least several times a month – it is becoming more and more of a safety gamble as more and more trucks clog up the roads, far too often speeding, overtaking each other and generally creating traffic mayhem. Many of these loads should, I’m sure, be on trains, and the awful state of the roads north are certainly not capable of sustaining the obvious increase of heavy vehicles. Many of the drivers are likely to be in similar situations to the young man who died – I see far too many trucks on the roads in the Waikato too when I’m there.

      • Rosemary McDonald 3.3.1

        I drive a 5 tonne housebus and am theoretically restricted to 90kph. Very seldom am I not passed by a following juggernaut. Andre…still applies today even on main roads….the perception is that heavy vehicles have immunity from attention from the law enforcement brigade. I can’t remember the last time a roadside weighstation was having a blitz.

        We travel regularly between Waikato and the Far North and can attest to the volume and the almost aggressiveness of some truck drivers. The Brynderwens, quite frankly, give me the shits when I’m trying to come down the south side of the hill with a huge truck pushing me to travel at a speed much faster than is safe. And I have a lead foot. Ken Shirley is an awesome spokeperson and lobbyist for the trucking industry and usually blames the daily accident involving a truck on the other road user.

        Fortunately there a some in the industry that know better…and are willing to speak out…http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/regional/305027/truck-crashes-blamed-on-fatigue-and-inexperience

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/90752541/Linehaul-drivers-quit-due-to-dangerous-conditions-and-inexperienced-drivers

  4. Gosman 4

    David Corbyn???

    [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.]

    [lprent: WTF: this looks like some kind of stupid unexplained diversion at the top of a post. If I see you do anything like that in the near future, you will be banned until after the election. I don’t have time to deal with stupidity. ]

  5. AsleepWhileWalking 5

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11851348

    Put waterways in trust for all New Zealanders

    • Ad 5.1

      Do you remember the Foreshore and Seabed Act?

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1

        In Hawaii in 2000, for instance, the Supreme Court ruled that the doctrine demands “adequate provision for traditional and customary Hawaiian rights, wildlife, maintenance of ecological balance and scenic beauty, and the preservation and enhancement of the waters for various uses in the public interest”.

        This kind of approach would work well in New Zealand, where public fury about the degradation of lakes, rivers, streams, springs and aquifers has reached a fever pitch. Kiwis are demanding their rights to the lawful enjoyment of these water bodies, and that their ecological health and scenic beauty are recognised.

        Given these precedents, a Waterways Act that puts all water bodies in trust for future generations would be timely. As in Hawaii, this would include recognition of the relationships between iwi and their ancestral rivers, springs and lakes, within a framework that protects “te mana o te wai” and the health and wellbeing of all waterways for all citizens.

        Seems reasonable.

  6. The Chairman 6

    Sowing the seeds of tax reform

    Russell and Baucher hope to fire up KiwiSavers to demand the tax system be made fairer, but also to spark a national debate about whether it is finally time for the wealthy to pay tax on their capital gains.

    “When the public rebels against unfair taxation, governments can change.”

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/92207613/kiwisavers-harshly-taxed-compared-to-property-investors-book-claims

  7. TIger Mountain 7

    well put, it remains rather telling that no senior people in NZ Labour including President Haworth, seem to be able to bring themselves to support Jeremy Corbyn

    [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.]

    [lprent: I am getting tired of having these kinds of personal attacks with no actual argument. Guess where it is going. BTW: I left my carefully framed observation as a comment in an expanded version of your own style. Enjoy. ]

    • lprent 7.1

      Personally I’m finding it hard to find anything much to support with Jeremy Corbyn either.

      Quite simply having deranged lefties ranting at me with no visible intelligence saying that I should support him for unspecified reasons out of some kind of faith based religiosity isn’t exactly a way to convince me. In fact it seems to be doing exactly the opposite.

      After looking at the results on the local election in the UK this morning, I suspect that much of the Labour support seems to be reacting in a similar fashion.

      I noticed exactly the same thing when I looked at Saunders. I suspect that the supporters of such candidates are their oppositions best weapon against them.

      • Morrissey 7.1.1

        Personally I’m finding it hard to find anything much to support with Jeremy Corbyn either.

        Really, Lin? What is it that you find hard to support? His commitment to the National Health Service? His commitment to decent, properly funded schooling? His commitment to international law? His opposition to Britain’s insane and ruinous “defence” policies?

        After looking at the results on the local election in the UK this morning, I suspect that much of the Labour support seems to be reacting in a similar fashion.

        Labour is in desperate straits in the United Kingdom. That’s not Corbyn’s fault, it’s the fault of Blair and his Kool-Aid Britannia mob, and no-hopers like Ed Miliband—the same people who are busy white-anting the party leader now.

        I guess you like your Labour—sorry, New Labour—politicians to be like this bloke:

        • lprent 7.1.1.1

          The funny thing is that I never hear anyone trying to explain any of these things. And in fact you didn’t explain them in your first para either.

          What I hear a lot are comments like your second – which effectively are whining.

          Usually followed by your third para, which is that of the usual attacking someone for not being faithful to something that they are incapable of explaining.

          FFS Morrisey. I could give a pigs arse about UK politics. But I find fundamentalist fools like you and Tiger about as useful for picking up information as Christian nutters trying to explain the bible without ever apparently ever having read it more than selected sections of it.

          Needless to say, people who act like that just tend to irritate me. I share the obvious human presumption that with supporters like this, why does that politician need any enemies?

          Unfortunately I suspect this is increasingly the attitude of Labour voters in the UK. Certainly the results in the local elections overnight are dispiriting. The few brighter spots in the results were even more dispiriting. It appears that political survival at that level for Labour candidates is increasingly to be very very local and have nothing to do with Westminister Labour.

        • Adrian Thornton 7.1.1.2

          @Morrissey +1
          Labour NZ yet another traditional left western political party being destroyed by it’s ‘faith based’ religious adherence to a debunked and destructive ideology.

          But then that’s what you get with fundamentalists…just check out Helen Clark’s ‘no looking back’ rave yesterday on rnz.
          http://www.radionz.co.nz/programmes/the-9th-floor/story/201842639/the-commander-helen-clark

      • weka 7.1.2

        To be fair to Corbyn though, it’s hard to see how anyone in that situation would be doing well on voting day given that (a) half the UK Labour party have openly undermined him and hence voters probably don’t trust the party to be competent in govt, and (b) the MSM have been relatively biased against him. Not that he is without fault, but there are significant factors outside of his control.

        • McFlock 7.1.2.1

          Although it’s interesting to not that since the snap election was announced, UKLabour has gone up almost 5% in the trend of polls.
          The tories have gone up too, but seem to be wobbling a bit at the top, and most of their support seems to have come from UKIP.

          A Labour win is still very very much in doubt, but provided they don’t falter as the effect of the localbodies kicks in, UKLabour might still be able to give the tories a bloody nose.

          • weka 7.1.2.1.1

            That’s a reasonably sharp swing up for Labour, what’s prompted that?

            • McFlock 7.1.2.1.1.1

              Seems to be bang on when the snap election was announced.

              #ifthistrendcontinues (lol) 35% wouldn’t be completely out of the question. But it it flattens for the next couple of weeks it would be game over.

              Also, the tories need to start losing, rather than just plateauing. Either way, I don’t expect the lines to cross over, but if they’re close then the tories might have trouble getting their hard brexit and other agenda items through.

              • saveNZ

                Maybe UK Labour should have

                “send the government a message’ slogan.

                • McFlock

                  I suspect they already do. I mean, they’re actually campaigning pretty well and have a good polling track so far, I just don’t think it’ll be enough for us to see PM Corbyn. It might be enough to see May knifed in the back, though.

            • lprent 7.1.2.1.1.2

              I suspect that it is largely the election effect allied to a lack of parties from a FFP system. When it gets closer to actually having to vote, then voting intentions firm up.

              In this case the idea about actually voting for the Conservatives for another 5 year term compared to someone that they are unsure about.

              I think that Labour will do better in this early election than many political observers expect. They have had the long term issue that many of their traditional supporters are looking for something to change. They are not seeing it as coming from UK Labour after the Blair years. So they have been drifting off to the SNP or UKIP or Lib-Dems (or Brexit) and splitting the vote. But I suspect that there is a bit too much change going on now.

              The problem for the conservatives as far as I can see as an outside observer, is that outside of the southern suburbs and some of the leafier semirural areas of the UK – there isn’t much solid support for the tories either. They have been doing well from the loss of support from the other side(s). But it looks like it is very soft.

              So when it gets back to being a two horse race (now that UKIP and Lib-Dems have largely disintegrated their accumulated support), then Labour is going to do better in the two horse races outside of Scotland.

              But I don’t think that Labour there looks like it can get to the point of forming a government.

          • Bill 7.1.2.1.2

            Of the 300-ish seats that Labour lost, just under half were lost in Scotland (130). A fair few in Wales went to independents.

            Anyone with a half an ounce of nous knew that Labour were going to get trounced in Scotland – and that’s down to Labour previously jumping into bed with the Tories and the gobsmacking ‘leadership’ of Kezia “the Blairite” Dugdale.

            So Labour didn’t do too badly – certainly not as badly as msm would have people believe.

            That the Tories picked up the UKIP vote and that both the Tories and Scottish Labour allowed members of the fucking Orange Order to stand as Labour and Tory candidates…that’s what would be newsworthy in my world.

            But then, I’m not a liberal msm forlornly manning the trenches against inevitable change – fuk! Was that a Bob Dylan earworm I just squished? I think it was 😉

        • lprent 7.1.2.2

          Oh I’d agree that he has had issues outside of his control. Reminds me of the way Cunliffe had problems here.

          However I have largely had to make up my decision about Corbyn from sources outside his supporter community, as they seem to spend all of their time whining about those issues outside of his control.

          Try finding someone amongst his ardent supporters who can coherently discuss his policy areas and why they are being applied without someone trying to accuse you of not supporting them.

          Which was the point that I’m making. Incidentally, this was part of the problem that Cunliffe had as well. Their most ardent supporters seem to make their life looking for someone to blame. They are often noisier than the actual enemies and tend to put a lot of people off.

          It also tends to drown out the message of what they are wanting to do in a wash of blind and usually deluded faith. Who in the hell needs enemies when left politicians have supporters like these?

    • Tiger Mountain 7.2

      apologies for bungling “reply”, my comment referred directly to sanctuary’s first comment (which included a reference to Mr Corbyn) on ADVANTAGE’s “yes for Ardern” piece

      no apology though, for my views on the lack of support for Jeremy Corbyn from NZ Labour tops and their minions, and don’t bother banning me–I have banned you!–this site became increasingly unreadable, imo, during the US Primary and Election debacle; a shame as I had been a Standard supporter from the start

      • Morrissey 7.2.1

        I’m afraid, Tiger Mountain, that Labour’s team of clever strategists—the same people who instructed Labour candidates in 2014 to recite, like a catechism, “Oh, look, Dirty Politics is a distraction”—have decreed that Corbyn’s platform of moderate, traditional Labour Party policies and a progressive, moral foreign policy is absolutely verboten.

        Brilliant Labour thinkers like Stephen “I Agree With Matthew” Mills have been strenuously distancing themselves from Corbyn for some time now….

        Open mike 18/01/2016

        • Adrian Thornton 7.2.1.1

          Yeh first of all we had to put up with Mike Williams on RNZ, which made Monday morning politics a complete waste of time, and now Mills, although to be fair, I guess he agrees with Hooton so often because…well because he just does, that’s centrists politics for you.
          It’s like listening or reading the gibberish from Nash and Lorck around here, who would know if you where listening or reading someone from National or Labour? I sure as hell can’t tell the difference most of the time.

      • lprent 7.2.2

        FFS: I’m not a Labour strategist. I am (generally) a Labour supporter. Surely even you could explain why I or NZ Labour be that interested in UK politics from here?

        The last of my family left the British isles a mere 150 years ago. NZ Labour’s job here is to represent citizens of this country. As far as I am concerned Nigel Haworth wasn’t elected to opine about affairs in another country. Especially when that country is 5th or 6th on our export trade and steadily becoming less relevant to NZ all of the time.

        Perhaps you should explain your reasoning rather than acting like a spoilt child demanding that other people do what you want them to do.

        As a moderator, as far as I could see there was nothing in your comment that related to the post. It barely seemed to have much relationship to Sanctuary’s comment, which was at least largely on topic, unlike Gosman’s comments which were at the top of the comments.. Which is why it got shunted to here.

        The comment I replied to it expressed my frustration at the myopia of the faithful who seem to care more about delineating enemies than convincing others through rational argument and facts. Basically after several years of this recently I suspect that many of you would be at home in an Inquisition torture pit ‘explaining’ in your inimitable fashion why heathens should be converting to the gentle religion of Christ.

        BTW: it was a reply to Sanctuary. The shift to OpenMike removes the parenting, but carries through any child comments.

  8. Morrissey 8

    Something rotten in the state of the German Green Party

    When fanatics and dilettantes like Volker Beck are allowed to dominate and bully an organization, it is doomed. The Greens in Germany look like they’re a spent force….

    http://normanfinkelstein.com/2017/05/07/finkelstein-under-attack-by-german-parliamentarian-and-self-styled-friend-of-israel-volker-beck-green-party-update/

  9. dv 9

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201842837/pike-river-families-never-shown-video-of-men-in-drift-mother-says

    Pike River families never shown video of men in drift, mother says

    Carol Rose, the mother of one of the Pike River 29 and took notes of all the meetings in the months following the disaster, says families were never shown footage of men in the drift.”

    So who is telling lies!!

    • ianmac 9.1

      They can’t both be right. Surely the Police can produce a minute detailing the what when where. Should be easy to do.
      After all Bill English keeps repeating the “they were shown the videos.” “My Police team told me so and they are as reliable as my friend Keating.”

    • bwaghorn 10.1

      yep and then we will have enclaves of unwanted foreign labourers ,

      • saveNZ 10.1.1

        Yep, and we can’t have that, so Natz will save, goodbye welfare system.

        To the 19th century workhouse we go.

    • saveNZ 11.1

      Another day in a country gripped by neoliberalism. But literally the stench is starting to show.

      • The Chairman 11.1.1

        Indeed. And when the stink hits the fan, it’s locals (not the offshore operators) that have to put up with the stench.

  10. The no.1 threat to farming communities.

  11. joe90 13

    On the absurdity that education is the silver bullet to relieve existing poverty and magic away inequality.

    .
    Education is not the best anti-poverty program, argues historian Harvey Kantor, and it’s long past time we acknowledged that…

    […]

    Kantor: One of the consequences of making education so central to social policy has been that we’ve ended up taking the pressure off of the state for the kinds of policies that would be more effective at addressing poverty and economic inequality. Instead we’re asking education to do things it can’t possibly do. The result has been increasing support for the kinds of market-oriented policies that make inequality worse.

    If we really want to address issues of inequality and economic insecurity, there are a lot of other policies that we have to pursue besides or at least in addition to education policies, and that part of the debate has been totally lost. Raising the minimum wage, or providing a guaranteed income, which the last time we talked seriously about that was in the late 1960’s, increasing workers’ bargaining power, making tax policies more progressive—things like that are going to be much more effective at addressing inequality and economic security than education policies. That argument is often taken to mean, *schools can’t do anything unless we address poverty first.* But that’s not what we were trying to say.

    http://haveyouheardblog.com/thepovertyfix/

    • greywarshark 13.1

      Education. Compulsory. Why? Because it’s good for citizens to be literate, and numerate and know about a raft of subjects. How will it be useful to them? Well they will be able to make their way in life, know about the world , the country and its systems, manage their affairs, know about opportunities, get jobs and make their individual lifestyle, and take their full, functioning place in society.

      That’s roughly how the thinking has been in everyone’s minds. What good has education actually been in helping people to become fully functioning citizens enjoying their place in society? What do we see around us today to show us how useful the education has been, received since the beginning of the 1900’s?

      Let’s unpick the above beliefs and look at reality.
      * The government and the comfortably off (actually the wealthy and rich but they never use such direct language), unpick society so it is fragmented going towards tatters. Education has helped them in finding their individual wealth, and then how to siphon off to themselves more that others needed to make their individual way.
      * Individual lifestyle, now becoming more precarious. May be without a permanent dwelling. Many forced to live like gypsies, worse than primitive hunter, gatherers who knew where the caves were and just had to turn out the lower animals to occupy, (or co-habit)
      .
      Many people are treated as litter on the streets, a dessicated leaf to be stepped on, or slipped on, and a target for street thieves, muggers, haters and the cold, superiority of elites.
      * Get jobs, which are offered on whim for a few hours when required by employers, but such workers not free to do anything else in between by order of the government, who want you work-ready day or night. So you can’t have an individual lifestyle, it is the chess economy, and you are a black or white pawn, with nothing to pawn when you are out of funds.
      * Opportunities – if you hear of them, you probably won’t be able to get to where they are being offered. You haven’t an address so they can’t be sent to you (do hey deliver to – usually end bench at the north corner of X Park). You haven’t the means to have a shower and get clean clothes to attend a competitive interview.

      Or you have children that you are nurturing, but no-one in government who has helped create this diminished situation that has left you stranded has positive thoughts for you and wants to help you and your children. There is no-one to nurture parents, and having children, a basic human, normal, natural condition, is regarded as a private hobby, that no-one else is involved with or celebrates with you.

      On your own you lose hope and also your cardboard layers that you slid away to provide a clean mat along with newspapers in which you read about last week’s opportunities, now passed. Or the opportunities presented are illusory, you are advised to shift away from the big city to somewhere else where there are said to be more chances. You do, and lose your network of contacts and soup caravan and handouts till you score another cash-paying job, because there is even less for you in the new location.
      * Being able to read and write and manage your affairs. Well self-management is talked about and then the means to do it are withheld. Need temporary help from WINZ? The female guard outside the doors in uniform will need to see whether the department staff deign to see you. You have had to travel a long weary way and not anticipated how long it would take and you are late! Your appointment has been cancelled, you have wasted good people’s time. You have to beg for money to get back to your starting point.

      Etc etc. The privileged people give you a thousand invisible kicks and look at the end result of someone bravely still standing and criticise how your hair is untidy, your children messy, your face sour, your manner uncouth, your car (if you have one) unwarranted. Actually all this negativity is unwarranted, but actually the wealthy give themselves the right to give you a WOF with just a once-over from appearance. They don’t look in your eyes, they never look at the achievements of the person just keeping going in such an arid, punitive human climate as cold to the soul as Antarctica is. Put a little love in your hearts went a song. The cold, say what would that cost?

      • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1

        Education. Compulsory. Why? Because it’s good for citizens to be literate, and numerate and know about a raft of subjects.

        Actually, education became compulsory because the business community demanded it. Even in the 19th century ignorant and illiterate people could not work the machines available nor do other menial tasks such as serving at the counter.

        I’m pretty sure that many capitalists at that time (I’m really not sure about to day – they really do seem to believe the myth of special people) realised that innovation is a numbers game. The more ideas you have that can be worked upon at the same time increases the number that will actually bring about something useful and educated people have more ideas.

        In other words, free compulsory education was brought about as a massive subsidy to business who didn’t want to pay for all that training themselves.

        Of course, that doesn’t mean that people being educated is a bad thing. In fact, I’d say that it was a positively good thing. The problem is that all the benefits of it are going to the bludging rich – exactly as designed.

        • ianmac 13.1.1.1

          Educate in the “Right” way though. Respect and obey authority and don’t tolerate original thought.

          • greywarshark 13.1.1.1.1

            Most of the education now needs to be spent on devising theories and then trying to make practical models of them, and then reviewing them to see what effect they will have on people, and the environment. Also learning civics and how hard it is to get people working together, and the goldilocks lesson of law making and supervision of behaviour; getting it at the right level isn’t easy.
            And learning more manual stuff, how to do things for yourself instead of passively waiting for a machine to do it.

            Human psychology and sociology should come first, along with literacy and basic numeracy. Everything else can be learned at tertiary level of polytechnic style. The intermediate level would take on the above matters and extend to four years, so up to the old fourth form level. Then the tertiary and career training. Learning about detail, say in geography later than earlier etc.

            It’s no use to learn the facts of the world and not understand what being human is about. That is what is important in this technological age, with robots and AI looming. To be able to critique what are facts would be good!

            And to sort out in one’s mind what things are interesting and what are just froth and conformism and escapism that isolates from the real and important for ‘good’ living. So there would be fewer car, gun and war and fewer men’s women’s magazines filled with photos of people elevated to Objects of Interest, objects of materialism, expensive watches, sophisticated booze, clothes, makeup techniques, feelings, exotic and rare animals, house decoration etc.

            • In Vino 13.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes, instead of becoming the bulwark of an informed and healthily functioning democracy, education, a few steps behind the fourth estate, is being slowly forced to tread the same path as the fourth estate: erosion of independent state-funded quality outlets; encouragement of privatisation and forced reliance upon commercialism, with the total exclusion from debate of any other (superior) forms of funding .
              Some commentators now blatantly assume that commercial advertising is the only way that any news media should be funded. Blinkered idiots.

  12. adam 14

    I think Lottery games are vulgar and hurt poorer communities.

    If that too confronting. Try cracked, they can sell you the idea

  13. Ed 15

    Chris Hipkins has set out a reasonable response to Nat/ACT’s Charter Schools here:
    http://www.chrishipkins.org.nz/labour_s_position_on_charter_schools

    What struck me was the statement “Take the failed Whangaruru charter schools decision to spend most of their upfront funding purchasing a farm. Since Hekia Parata finally decided to close them down, as the Ministry of Education repeatedly recommended, that huge investment of public money was lost forever.”

    I recall this being raised as a possibility right back when the charter schools initiative was getting underway, but from memory was dismissed as just partisan hyperbole. Is this true? Did anything get recovered from the private owners (furniture, office equipment, AV equipment, playground fittings, etc, etc)? Or is it all just a huge windfall for the private owners – being rewarded for an education failure?

    Is it possible to find out how much the total spending from taxpayer funds was, and of that how much was spent on operating costs other than management fees, and how much recovered when the school was closed?

    • David Mac 15.1

      It astounds me that the operators of the failed Whangaruru School were allowed to keep their choice of school, a farm. I’m not sure if I should be protesting or starting a Cabin Crew school, I’d need a Boeing Dreamliner. Fortunately I know absolutely nothing about training cabin crew and I’m excellent at international travel.

      It failed, ok. Why on earth are the assets not returned to the people that provided them. You and me.

      • saveNZ 15.1.1

        exactly David Mac.

        Robbing from the kids though is easy prey so a wonderful business opportunity for the smooth taking greedy.

  14. Southern Man 16

    To those wondering why Peter Thiel’s application for citizenship was fast tracked, the following article might provide some clues.

    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/may/07/the-great-british-brexit-robbery-hijacked-democracy?

    • Draco T Bastard 16.1

      The rich are the problem, not the solution.

      • David Mac 16.1.1

        We need the productive, the dollars chase them.

        The bloke next to me works long long hours, he’ll knock up homes for 10 families this year. I see his office light burning at 1am. He makes lots more money than I do, he’s what I’d call wealthy.

        I don’t work many hours. I spend lots of time fishing, surfing, drinking, travelling around and entertaining myself commenting on blogs.

        If the bloke next door and I were paid the same money, had the same boat, sqm of house etc…..why the hell would he work 100 hours a week? He’d be nuts not to hang out with me and cruise.

        What a hoot we’d have. Alas, the Jones, Smiths, Browns and Black families will have to make do with a tarpaulin stretched between trees…and since we averaged things out, there’s only room on our boats for 2.

        I’m a huge fan of equality. Splitting all the $ up so we have equal shares is ridiculous. If we do it on a global scale, it’s about $7.50 each. We’d all be surfing and eating feijoa jam, nothing would get done. I think the equality we need to be concerned with is an equality of opportunity and the associated benefits of embracing them.

        • Draco T Bastard 16.1.1.1

          We need the productive, the dollars chase them.

          Can you rephrase that in a way that it makes sense?

          If the bloke next door and I were paid the same money, had the same boat, sqm of house etc…..why the hell would he work 100 hours a week?

          Why is he working 100 hour weeks? That’s enough for two or even three full time jobs. And that amount of time at work is decreasing his productivity and probably to the point that he isn’t getting anywhere near as much done as actually needs to be done. He’s probably wasting 20 hours or more.

          Define: Paid the same money

          What a hoot we’d have. Alas, the Jones, Smiths, Browns and Black families will have to make do with a tarpaulin stretched between trees…and since we averaged things out, there’s only room on our boats for 2.

          There’s quite a few people available who could be employed to ensure that everyone has a home but the capitalists, like your hero there, would complain because wages would go up.

          Splitting all the $ up so we have equal shares is ridiculous.

          And where have I ever suggested such a thing?

          you seem to have this delusional idea that people are solely motivated by money whereas most people are motivated by anything but. In fact, it seems to me that only the sociopathic types are motivated by money and then there’s the reality of motivation and how paying people too much causes them fail badly:

          • David Mac 16.1.1.1.1

            “We need the productive, the dollars chase them.”

            Can you rephrase that in a way that it makes sense?

            It is natural that the rewards, whatever form they take, gravitate towards the productive. I don’t think the guy next door is pushed along by money these days. He has a comfortable buffer. These days I think he just likes making homes for families and teaching kids to build. He’s in the habit of getting up with the sun.

            You see his assets as a problem, a product of his greed. We are all guilty of greed, who the hell can have just 2 Toffee Pops and put the packet away? Yep you’re right, I see his fair and square rewards as a ‘Good on ya mate.’ I think most Kiwis would.

            Of course we’re all motivated by money. To a degree. Few of us can do without electricity or clothing. I get the feeling you’d like to limit how productive/rewarded I’m allowed to be. I think to remove that choice from people severely hobbles aspiration and motivation.

            • Draco T Bastard 16.1.1.1.1.1

              It is natural that the rewards, whatever form they take, gravitate towards the productive.

              The problem with that is that the majority of rich people aren’t productive at all – they’re just parasites living off the work of those who are. in other words, they’re nothing but bludgers. Probably more accurately called parasites as they will kill the host.

              In other words, that sentence is pure bollocks. In fact, I’d call it an outright lie.

              You see his assets as a problem, a product of his greed.

              And they are on both counts. Excessive assets owned by one person leaves less for everyone else. That’s why capitalism always results first in ever increasing poverty and finally the collapse of the society that it arose in.

              I get the feeling you’d like to limit how productive/rewarded I’m allowed to be.

              And in that you’d be wrong. In fact what i want is to increase everyone’s creativity but to do that requires removing the nations resources from the control of the few.

              • David Mac

                Yeah…I think we could bounce a ping-pong ball between us all night Draco and be no closer to common ground. I like you all the same. I think you bring colour and thought provoking comments to this blog.

                These fat neo-liberal huas you refer to Draco. Yep, unnecessary exploitive parasites of the highest order, I agree. They are a hindrance on us all leading rounded colourful lives. But there are only 100’s of them. The bogeyman is very thin. I don’t know any neo liberal life sucking bastards but I know quite a few people that are comfortable by way of applying themselves and getting stuck in.

                There is no limit on opportunity Draco. There is not a defined quota out there for us to share between us. One person having what you deem too much is not hogging your share. There is plenty for everyone, but putting a bucket next to my couch and expecting it to fill up with money as I watch TV is an unrealistic expectation.

                I thought I’d seen you make a comment along the lines of “Yep, everything over 100k is greed, anything over $100k pa, 100% tax on the excess.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  But there are only 100’s of them. The bogeyman is very thin.

                  Richest 62 people as wealthy as half of world’s population, says Oxfam
                  World’s eight richest people have same wealth as poorest 50%

                  Yeah, I don’t think those bogeymen are that thin and they really are causing serious problems. The same problems that feudalism caused in fact because that’s what capitalism is.

                  There is no limit on opportunity Draco.

                  Yes there is. If someone doesn’t have access to the resources to be creative then they have no opportunity.

                  And that true for most of the population of the world and it’s that way because so few people control all of the resources of the world.

                  There is plenty for everyone, but putting a bucket next to my couch and expecting it to fill up with money as I watch TV is an unrealistic expectation.

                  And yet rich people do that all the time through their ownership of resources and factories.

                  And I’m pretty sure you also do exactly the same thing with your savings account. you know, put money in the savings account and expect it to grow with no productive activity on your part at all.

    • ropata 17.1

      The judge was kind to him, I hope Rachinger sorts himself out and does something more constructive in future.

    • greywarshark 17.2

      Wow, conviction and discharge. Cool. We are taking a different line to criminality are we, public admission then put in stocks for a day in a public place? Having to clean public toilets with a toothbrush. Go and work at seasonal work and picking vegetables – that would be good, up early in the morning cutting lettuces for the supermarkets?

      I wonder what punishment, retribution, re-education, sanctions have been imposed on him and Cameron Slater, who as everyone knows has a hard, grey shell and scuttles around in ingenious places. However I understand that beer is a favourite for pulling him from his hideyhole under decaying detritus.

      Visit Southern Man at #16 above and look at that link. Slater is a pimple on a very large smelly backside. Wot me worry?!

  15. JC 18

    And now for the Weather…

    “Cyclone Donna is now the strongest tropical storm to hit the South Pacific in May after reaching Category 5 this morning….
    Weatherwatch.co.nz said Donna now had sustained winds of 215km/h gusting up to a ferocious 260km/h, making it the strongest May cyclone recorded in the Southern Hemisphere”.

    https://www.odt.co.nz/news/national/strongest-may-cyclone-hit-south-pacific

    “A climate scientist said Cyclone Donna’s lateness and intensity was a direct result of a changing climate.

    Jim Salinger, from Otago University, said late cyclones such as Donna were rare, but not unheard of.

    However, he said this one was unusual as the sea temperatures around Vanuatu and New Caledonia are what they would normally be in March.

    “Well we’re not in an El Niño and we’re not in a La Niña, so you would not expect temperatures to be that warm, though they can be on occasions. So what we’re seeing happening here is, I’d say, there’s a bit of global warming going on,” Dr Salinger says.

    Dr Salinger said scientific predictions of stronger, more intense cyclones over a longer season as a result of climate change were starting to be borne out”.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/330274/still-fierce,-cyclone-donna-moving-towards-new-caledonia

    • James Thrace 18.1

      Personally, I think the precession of the earths’ axis, doing as it always does, has far more impact on the seasonal changes we are experiencing. After all, 26500 years happens gradually, so it’s not complete idiocy to imagine that seasonal changes would happen imperceptibly.

      20 years ago, wouldn’t have had any issue planting out tomatoes on Labour Weekend. Now, it’s more likely to be first weekend of December such is the change in the seasonal patterns that have been experienced. Summer hasn’t followed the 1 December – 1 March “cycle” for nearly a decade now – it’s been more like March when Summer really hits it’s stride. Winter seems to be occurring from mid July – October.

      I’m sure I’ll be howled down by the earth sciences graduates claiming that seasons never change and are completely immutable.

  16. JC 19

    Bill English: …. ‘irresponsible’, ‘misleading’ Pike River families..

    Playing the Blame game..

    Speaking on NewsHub AM Show today “he continued to defend the Government’s reluctance to allow manned entry to the mine, where 29 people lost their lives in a 2010 explosion.

    “It could be putting a significant number of lives in danger…and doing so for the worst of reasons – and that’s political reasons”.

    And yet he would still not rule out agreeing to manned entry as a part of post-election coalition talks….

    FFS! How’s that for irresponsible and misleading!

    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2017/05/bill-english-winston-peters-irresponsible-misleading-pike-river-families.html

    • Andre 20.1

      Bullshit. For most plants worldwide, their growth is limited by something else essential. For those plants, increased CO2 makes no difference or may even be a stressor. In a very few rare circumstances, almost always in controlled environments like greenhouses, CO2 will be the constraint to growth, so increasing CO2 will lead to increased growth. This an an example of the denier’s attempt to sow confusion by claiming a very rare specific case applies to the general case.

      https://skepticalscience.com/co2-plant-food.htm

      And if the oceans lose productivity due to increased acidification from increased CO2, then that loss will likely swamp any tiny increase from extra plant growth.

      https://skepticalscience.com/ocean-acidification-global-warming.htm

      • The Chairman 20.1.1

        “For most plants worldwide, their growth is limited by something else essential. For those plants, increased CO2 makes no difference or may even be a stressor.”

        Yet, satellite imaging shows the Earth has been getting greener.

        “This an an example of the denier’s attempt to sow confusion by claiming a very rare specific case applies to the general case.”

        Alternatively, it could just be an upside to the downside.

        • lprent 20.1.1.1

          You appear to be genius at useless aphorisms. I guess that is what glib but scientifically ignorant are good at.

          The world got gets ‘greener’ when we have green algae growing on oceans and waterways. It gets ‘greener’ when grassland replaces forest or swamp. It gets greener when snow and ice cover is replaced by plants.

          However none of these mean nothing to providing increased sequestration on additional fossil carbon – they do the opposite. They don’t compensate for the increased adsorption of heat inside our planets volatiles that is performing the fastest climate change that this world has seen since the last major asteroid sea strike.

          But I guess that saying such stupid aphorisms they satisfy your tongue and reduce your need to have have to use your brain for actual science eh?.

          • The Chairman 20.1.1.1.1

            The article stated it (greening in the satellite imaging) was a consequence of the increasing atmospheric CO2 concentration measured by the leaf area index. Therefore, I don’t see how algae and grass fall into that category. Nevertheless, one would assume those occurrences (along with snow and ice cover over the period) would be accounted for.

  17. Rosemary McDonald 22

    Pie describes our world….

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