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Open mike 09/06/2020

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 9th, 2020 - 106 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 …

106 comments on “Open mike 09/06/2020 ”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    So business wants clarity over the borders – https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/418557/nz-reaches-alert-level-1-but-businesses-want-clarity-over-borders

    They are closed. Is that clear?

    • Muttonbird 1.1

      Lol. Business is the religion and profit the opium of the wealthy. Nothing shall stand in the way of it, especially not people.

    • Ad 1.2

      Business need to keep the pressure on this.

      It's in all our interests.

      • solkta 1.2.1

        On the contrary, it is in ALL our interests to keep the border secure. A timeline cannot be given because we cannot know when other countries will get their shit together and get this virus under control. Australia's daily new cases for the last 17 days were: 14, 11, 3, 9, 15, 6, 11, 23, 12, 10, 9, 17, 8, 11, 4, 5, 5 https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-d&q=australia+new+covid+cases

        We have all put the hard work in but now some are putting their self interest first.

        • RedLogix 1.2.1.1

          Australia's daily new cases for the last 17 days were

          And the mass BLM protests, held against all official advice, is going to help how?

          In reality I'm optimistic that events like this held outdoors are relatively low risk. Still I'm left to wonder that if even a single new COVID case and avoidable death arises as a consequence of these protests, whether anyone will be held accountable.

          Still in principle it's pretty damned galling to see smug left wingers patting themselves on the back for NZ's remarkable achievement (and we should be bloody proud of it), while at the same time cheering on mass protests elsewhere.

          One week it's 'lockdowns are good', the next week it's 'lockdowns are irrelevant get out and protest'. Does anyone else here have a really sore neck from this?

          • McFlock 1.2.1.1.1

            lol

            Calling for people to be held accountable for BLM-related covid deaths is some inception-level outrage.

            • RedLogix 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Well go and ask one of your elderly relatives how they feel about dying because possibly BLM protests trigger a secondary wave of infection.

              • McFlock

                Look, covid exists, but there's no way to link an individual death to a systemic problem. Any protestors who spread the infection were just a few bad apples, right? Besides, you haven't presented any alternative to the protest, so obviously that must mean that every non-protestor supports the worst possible course of action of actively applauding murders by racist police officers. And lots of protestors were distant from other protestors, so that means all the protestors were distant from each other. Oh, and identity politics causes covid anyway.

                I think that covers your shtick.

                • RedLogix

                  That's quite clever, pulling an insane, febrile act in the hope I'll back away very, very carefully.

                  Meanwhile back in the real world this is what happens when 'no police'.

                  (Incidentally if you have ever worked with a bunch of Trinidadian instrument techs, it's truly the most delightful experience ever.)

                  • McFlock

                    Why would you back away? Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery lol

                    Oh, and I still find it funny that you think “defund the police” must mean some sort of mad max dystopia.

                    • RedLogix

                      Oh, and I still find it funny that you think “defund the police” must mean some sort of mad max dystopia.

                      Well I just produced solid real life evidence, you by contrast can't even begin to explain what you really mean by 'defund the police' even though I challenged you to do that numerous times last night.

                      Given you have completely rejected any political reform process, and despise 'incrementalism', then what exactly do you have in mind? Because it had better be damned good, the people most at risk here are the vulnerable and dispossessed you profess to care about.

                    • McFlock

                      And camden is another real-life possibility.

                      I already said, several times and in several ways, that it's not for me to determine what system other communities choose to replace their obviously broken law enforcement services.

                      Your "does not compute" loop needs to throw a specific error type if you genuinely want me to help resolve the bug in your cognitive processing.

                    • RedLogix

                      that it's not for me to determine what system other communities choose to replace their obviously broken law enforcement services.

                      Well the loudest voices at the moment are making it clear they want police forces to be abolished. I produced the links, that made the demand clear …. zero police.

                      Now you damn well know that's an insane demand, it's an invitation to revert to local warlordism.

                      The only rational path forward is to increase police funding and pay, reform training and build professionalism. Merge and eliminate most of the 18,000 separate highly localised agencies that exist today and get coherence and consistency across the whole nation. Eradicate places for bad cops to hide, get the police union on board and engage heavily with the diverse communities they serve. Start with a recognition that at least 95% of cops are good people who serve their communities to the best of their ability.

                      But you've rejected that as 'incrementalism'.

                    • McFlock

                      Well the loudest voices at the moment are making it clear they want police forces to be abolished. I produced the links, that made the demand clear …. zero police.

                      Elimination of the current paramilitary police does not necessarily mean "zero police" (e.g. camden), and "zero police" does not necessarily mean "local warlordism" (e.g. whatever anarchists come up with).

                      As for your idea that the way out is to increase police funding, much lols.

                      As for consolidating police forces with the current paramilitary crowd, state police are often also paramilitary thugs. So that likely won't work in the way you hope.

                      Start with a recognition that at least 95% of cops are good people who serve their communities to the best of their ability.

                      Well they did fuckall about the other 5%, so no.

                    • RedLogix

                      Elimination of the current paramilitary police does not necessarily mean "zero police" (e.g. camden), and "zero police" does not necessarily mean "local warlordism" (e.g. whatever anarchists come up with).

                      Sorry but that is what the BLM links demand. Crystal clear. Zero police. Vaguely implying that 'local communities' can replace them with 'something else' is pretty much the definition of local warlordism.

                      And what if white communities decide they want their own special armed gangs to return to full segregation and dismantle all progress toward multiculturalism. Return to the Jim Crowe laws, etc? It's a miserable, disgusting prospect, but you could have no possible argument against it.

                    • McFlock

                      Vaguely implying that 'local communities' can replace them with 'something else' is pretty much the definition of local warlordism.

                      No, it's not.

                      And what if white communities decide they want their own special armed gangs to return to full segregation and dismantle all progress toward multiculturalism.

                      You're conflating legislative change and the current US police system. Specifically:

                      And what if white communities decide they want their own special armed gangs

                      basically the current system; and

                      to return to full segregation and dismantle all progress toward multiculturalism.

                      Legislative change, nothing to do with actually how laws and societal norms are upheld.

                    • RedLogix

                      In any real world society, outside of left wing fantasy land, you understand from your work as a bouncer, that someone has to impose a physical security reality.

                      That means an agency capable of kicking down doors, taking down violent and threatening offenders, taking meth dealers off the streets, protecting the vulnerable in domestic incidents, tracking down exploiters, fraudsters, thugs and criminals of every kind. You know this perfectly well.

                      And in the USA where the crims are all armed that means your hypothetical 'something else' must be armed too.

                      And if blacks can have their own armed gang, then so can the hispanics, the asians, the whites … well here is a list with at least 97 entries. And that's just the dimension of ethnicity. How about all women have their own police (except that these days there is no such thing as sex apparently) and then all catholics, every rich gated community can build it's wall's higher and employ their own heavily armed mercenaries. Every town and hamlet can do their own thing, all 18,000 of them.

                      Hell you are right, there are elements of this all through the current system. That's precisely what is wrong with it.

                    • McFlock

                      See, where you have a complete lack of imagination is that you can only see a standing army or warlords as options.

                      There's actually a full continuum of options of community involvement in law and order. What situations we need "bouncers" for, and where other services would be more appropriate, and where a variety of other historical options could be used instead of a standing army of paranoid bouncers. As long as the other options work within the legal system, cool. Read up on societies before what we know as police. Not all of them were warlord hellscapes.

                      Having a non-representative paramilitary force whose members mostly live separate from the citizens it controls has been an abject failure at working within the legal system. Defund those units. If communities want to try something different, they probably won't do too much worse than the current system.

                    • RedLogix

                      You ask me to imagine something different, yet you cannot even explain what you alternative would look like. You just weakly resort to saying 'it's up to the locals'.

                      That's nowhere near good enough.

                    • McFlock

                      Dude, I'm not your social policy teacher and I'm not the official spokesperson for BLM or defund the police..

                      You can say it's "not good enough" all you want, but it's still a fuckload better than defending the current regime. It's pathetic to be whining about nobody liking the 95% of cops who aren't racist murderers. They don't deserve a medal for doing their fucking job without braining 75 year olds, and they're not doing their job if they're not immediately arresting the other 5%.

                      Fire them, and let the communities develop some new ideas, because your ossified perspective ain't working.

          • Climaction 1.2.1.1.2

            It's par for the course really. Hating on business and making it difficult for them then expressing outrage that they dare to ask for certainty about when travel can start again or that their revenue doesn't match expenses and there fore jobs have to go. The right might be coldly calculating, but the outraged naivety expressed by the vocal left is what allows parties like National back into power.

            • Incognito 1.2.1.1.2.1

              Which comment are you replying to, because it ain’t 1.2.1.1.

              Don’t you think that anybody who’s asking for certainty about international travel is a tad naive?

              • Climaction

                If international film workers are essential, why not any other form of international business person? is the arts somehow more essential than representatives of exporting companies

                Inconsistencies create uncertainty.

                Which was the point of my comment, and i believe i can speak for redlogix in this instance when i say that it was a point he was making too.

                • Sacha

                  Screen industry workers are only about a quarter of the 200 let in so far. Construction is another obvious sector where (re)importing one foreign specialist can allow restarting dozens of local jobs.

                • Incognito

                  I still don’t know what your comment had to do with 1.2.1.1. Never mind, I’m no mind reader like you.

                  You seem to be confusing the opening of our borders for the general public with the exemptions that can be and are granted. To manage the risk, the borders will remain closed for the wider public. A simple binary. When they will open depends on the virus in other countries. How long is a piece of string? What are the Lotto numbers this week?

                  One can apply for an exemption, e.g. as an essential worker. There are eligibility criteria and the decision allows for some discretion AFAIK. The apparent inconsistencies are based on our ignorance about the decision-making process and ignorance leads to uncertainty in some cases. Life is not always a nice binary situation. Tough.

                  For more information: https://www.immigration.govt.nz/about-us/covid-19/border-closures-and-exceptions

            • Sacha 1.2.1.1.2.2

              Capitalists justify their lopsided share of profits on the basis that they take more risks than workers do. Yet just watch business owners put their hands out for the state to reduce that risk. Bludgers.

        • Ad 1.2.1.2

          The exemptions at the border have long been in place, as the Prime Minister pointed out on that same RNZ interview.

          Once you generate exceptions, there will always be pressure applied at the edges of that criteria.

          There's a helluva lot more integration required between the Immigration part of MBIE, and the Business part of MBIE, to ensure that these rules get stretched. Twyford should have long since had the AC36 applications on his desk – and Lees-Galloway should have had the via applications for the same long since processed.

          Otherwise we can expect a whole bunch more businesses that rely on specialist overseas inputs to start failing. Thankfully the PM got this immediately this morning when she talked of "knock-on effects" being an evaluative criteria. The lack of internal coordination is pretty stark.

          If they can't get this kind of stuff sorted then business including the whole of the APEC visit is in serious doubt.

          So yes, business should keep up the pressure on the exceptions for visits. They are in all our interests.

          • Incognito 1.2.1.2.1

            The lack of internal coordination is pretty stark.

            Isn’t that more an operational issue?

            • Ad 1.2.1.2.1.1

              On the results it's a political issue that will only get louder as the AC36 and APEC events get nearer.

            • Sacha 1.2.1.2.1.2

              Becomes political when the agencies are so incompetent that they can't process papers for a high-profile public-funded event like the sportsboating.

              And if it’s because the event organisers are trying to get govt to pay their quarantine expenses instead, let’s hear about it.

      • ScottGN 1.2.2

        Do you think the government is keeping the border closed for the hell of it? And a bit of pressure might change their mind? This ‘pressure’ is more political than economic it seems to me.

      • Stephen D 1.2.3

        It's in the interests of shareholders. F..k everybody else.

    • Tiger Mountain 1.3

      Sod business–from self employed to SME to corporates, a number of flaws and myths have been well exposed for all to see. There is indeed a layer that viewed Alert Levels and Lockdown as little more than a barrier to “increased shareholder value” and profits–viewed of course from the safety of leafy suburbs and air conditioned rural spreads and boltholes.

      Small operators and contractors are in reality closer to workers by another name. The corporates like Graham Hart’s Carter Holt Harvey have been amongst the worst exploiters of the Govt. bailouts. CHH wood division took over 7 million in wage subsidies, trousered it, and made workers take enforced leave entitlements, and now are making substantial numbers redundant (70% for example is proposed for the Marsden Pt LVL plant). Some workers are in “negative leave balance” so they may need to forgo portions of any redundancy payments.

      The Govt. did the right thing per immediate bailouts on the “high trust” model to get buy in from the employing class and aspirational petit bourgeois sectors–it would likely had been anarchy, or patchy Lockdown buy-in without the wage subsidies.

      • Tiger Mountain 1.3.1

        I should add that CHH closed their saw mill in Whangarei earlier in the year, 111 jobs gone. They were restructuring their business before C19, but took the Govt. bailout anyway. That is the morality of business.

      • logie97 1.3.2

        Sports sponsorship

        Does anyone have a handle on how much the big name corporates are putting into the high profile sports events that are about to resume. Nationwide golf tournaments appear to be back on the calendar and the big names are there boots and all. How many of these companies took bailouts over the last few months while making redundancies. The money-go-round starts again.

    • Treetop 1.4

      What business need to be aware of is that there is a risk to their business and their health were Covid -19 to take a hold in NZ. No government can be held to be responsible for the downturn in business which a virus causes.

      With more unemployment and the uncertainty of the impact of the virus, people will be more careful with their money.

  2. aj 2

    👍 what don't they understand. I cringe at the level of comprehension of these people.

    • Sanctuary 2.1

      I don't think you need to be Sherlock Holmes to work out there are powerful right wing business interests that are a) furious at the lockdown b) deeply alarmed at the prospect of a landslide labour victory and c) really, really pissed off that their unfettered right to profit has been circumscribed. They are not so stupid as to break cover against such an overwhelmingly popular PM and empirical evidence of success. From Steven Joyce to Gareth Morgan to the corporate management of Auckland University they've got a shit ton of egg on their faces and their credibility is badly dented. But you can be sure their proxies in politics and the media are being left in no doubt as to what is expected of them. Think of the ridiculous (but well funded) Plan B group, or the incoherent and sullen recent columns from Fran O'Sullivan or hear the sneering and surly tone of voice used by the likes of Barry Soper when questioning the PM to get some idea of what certain business interests have in mind as a "reward" for the government over the next three months.

      • Halfcrown 2.1.1

        How fucking true.

      • tc 2.1.2

        Spot on sadly.

        let's hope the govt comes down hard on these companies who've gamed the wage subsidy by not passing it on…. abhorrent behavior.

      • Incognito 2.1.3

        Nice morning rant. I’m curious to know how the Plan B group is funded and you obviously know about that so why don’t you share it here with us?

      • Anne 2.1.4

        The sneering and surly tone of voice used by the likes of Barry Soper when questioning the PM started the day after Ardern became PM in 2017.

        Fury and resentment was written all over his face and Ardern was well aware of it. I recall her neatly passing over his loaded questioning and on to the next questioner before he could respond. It used to infuriate him further.

      • weka 2.1.5

        One thing I am curious about is whether there is any transparency about things like redundancy and business branch closures. Do we know why they are happening in each case? Or is that confidential to businesses? Protecting shareholder profits? Business was overextended and will collapse if it doesn't scale down? Does anyone know?

        • weka 2.1.5.1

          Case in point

          • Sabine 2.1.5.1.1

            Well the PM can be as angry as she wants to be, if she thought that was not going to happen then she needs more 'reality based' advisors. Besides these guys had the 'restructuring' already going on before Covid. Why should they stop now, its not as if they got more demand or customers with money thanks to Covid.

            Also neither the tax payer nor the government is 'taking a hit' as the money the government has to spend is provided by the tax payer – which would be people in work paying PAYE. We all know that rich people pay accountants to 'avoid paying taxes' or at least pay no more then someone on 70.000 before tax a year.. So in essence the government just literally gave the tax payer of this country a refund. So if she feels that the country is a bit short on cash she can start instructing her cabinet / beige suits to start looking at preventing rich people from getting away with tax avoidance. After all the Country may not have enough workers left to pay for the upkeep of the country. http://www.stuff.co.nz/sunday-star-times/latest-edition/7549236/Half-NZs-super-rich-dodge-tax

            So in essence she should be happy as the Wage subsidy did what it was supposed to do, pay workers who would other wise be claiming unemployment. It was known that at some stage many of these workers will end up on the unemployment benefit. It was known so much that they Government decided to pay the wage subsidy to people who claimed unemployment cause Covid.

            https://www.interest.co.nz/news/105188/people-who-lose-their-jobs-could-be-eligible-250-490-week-payment-12-weeks-under-new

            As of the women in her 'late fifties' who is afraid of not finding a job in this economy or any other due to age? I feel ya sister. I do.
            Now the government could allow for people like her to go onto 'early' retirement…might even give them a decent deal to do so, as this would also take pressure of a dead employment market. But hey, it appears the government and the PM is just not angry enough just yet.

            With Covid-19 and a lot of people losing jobs other places it's hard to look somewhere else."

            Gray, in her late 50s, said if any job did come up at The Warehouse she would have to reapply, and though she planned to look elsewhere she feared companies would not take on older workers.

            Fact is that demand is down, mind, there is only so much crap one can buy and then demand is down. I would also assume that the businesses listed in this article – Warehouse, Noel Leeming, Warehouse Stationary – etc have now hard competition with KMART and all those two dollar shops, and all the other trash shops that we are happy to build big malls for.

            But heck, people buckle up, the ride ain't over, heck it is just beginning.

            • Sacha 2.1.5.1.1.1

              the money the government has to spend is provided by the tax payer

              When it is from borrowing, the money actually comes from future generations of taxpayers and citizens.

              They have more urgent things to fund like climate action rather than propping up today's capitalists. Let the owners pay their fair share for once.

      • AB 2.1.6

        Yep – it's the psychic shock of having it rammed in their face that a society is more than just a place where 'business' occurs. They are very vengeful right now.

      • Bearded Git 2.1.7

        Nice one Sanc….agree 100 per cent.

        Having said that with Oz covid cases having a rolling average of 9/day now I would support borders being open to Oz when this is 2/day and with strict testing/symptom analysis etc

  3. Ad 3

    Good work to the US Democrats for introducing a series of sweeping Police reforms.

    And they all took the knee on the floor before they did it.

    Then Pelosi read out a list of killed Police victims.

    This is good agit-prop politics, timed perfectly into electoral season.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-52969375

    The bill:

    – forces federal police to use body and dashboard cameras

    – bans chokeholds

    – eliminates unannounced police raids known as "no-knock warrants"

    – makes it easier to hold police liable for civil rights violations

    – calls for federal funds to be withheld from local police forces who do not make similar reforms.

    – Makes lynching a federal crime

    – Limits the sale of military weapons to the police

    – Gives the Department of Justice the authority to investigate state and local police for evidence of department-wide bias or misconduct

    – Creates a "national police misconduct registry" – a database of complaints against police.

    And of course, they get to then stick it to the Republicans in the Senate when the Republicans vote it all down.

    And then stick it to the President as well.

    Excellent politics, good initiatives.

  4. The Chairman 4

    Wow!

    Anybody else been following this?

    • Barfly 4.1

      Dead cat much?

    • RedLogix 4.2

      I was peripherally aware that the Flynn case was shonky to say the least, but this is new information. I've never listened to Ted before, man is he articulate.

      Setting aside all partisanship, if the facts he is speaking to are even vaguely correct, then yes partisan law enforcement …. no matter which administration does it …. is incredibly dangerous. If nothing else it ensures that no-one in an administration trusts anyone else, and no-one will speak the truth without paying a terrible price.

    • Andre 4.3

      It's a piece of public political masturbation Cruz posted to ingratiate himself with MADAmorons who might be still concerned he might still possess some remnant of spine and principle sufficient to squeak up against their Dear Leader.

      https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2020/06/amy-klobuchar-just-dismantled-ted-cruzs-absurd-smear-of-barack-obama/

      https://edition.cnn.com/2020/06/03/politics/rosenstein-russia-hearing-fact-check/index.html

      • RedLogix 4.3.1

        I've scanned that Mother Jones reference. It's little more than a bunch of reckons flying in very loose formation.

        As for the CNN so called fact check, yes it checks of a list of events, but none seem to directly address what Cruz is saying. Anything to do with this affair seems to vanish down endless rabbit holes very quickly.

        In the early days of the Trump administration there seems to have been a genuine effort to reach out to both the Chinese and Russian governments in order to reopen and reset the terms of engagement with them. Whether this was a good idea or not, it's clear there were factions in Washington who have determined nothing like this was going to happen.

        As I've repeatedly said, the USA has determined to abandon it's role as the global guarantor of security. And regardless of whether Trump's connections with Russia can be considered legitimate or not, this entire 'Russiagate' debacle only ensures that at least a generation of Presidents will never attempt a negotiation with Russia ever again. The domestic risk is now too high; talking to them in any terms other than sanctions and military posturing are the only modes allowed.

        The fundamental premise of the US led post WW2 security order was that nations who trade beneficially with each other are less motivated to go to war. It's an imperfect, but also reasonably effective idea. Combined with the deterrent of nuclear weapons, the past 75 years has seen no major power kinetic conflict, and a general trend towards far less violence than any other time in our history.

        Trump's background is a business man, and he would have no doubt framed his approach to Russia as a business opportunity. Whether he understood 'conflict of interest or not' is beside the point, the idea of normalising relations with Russia is essentially a good one. And now an idea that is dead and buried largely at the hands of the Democrats.

        • Andre 4.3.1.1

          In the early days of the Trump administration there seems to have been a genuine effort to reach out to both the Chinese and Russian governments in order to reopen and reset the terms of engagement with them.

          You still haven't worked out that any efforts along those lines were merely looking for openings to further personally enrich Odious Maximus and his shoats? Ivanka's trademarks, Moscow hotels and on and on and on and on? I guess some people really can be fooled all of the time.

          As for further negotiations with Russia, I doubt there will be a problem for any administration that attempts to conduct negotiations openly, transparently, and with the interests of the American people foremost. All of which were lacking in the events of 2016 and 2017 at issue.

          • RedLogix 4.3.1.1.1

            You still haven't worked out that any efforts along those lines were merely looking for openings to further personally enrich Odious Maximus and his shoats?

            Maybe it was where I said this:

            " Whether he understood 'conflict of interest or not' is beside the point,"

            Was that it?

            I doubt there will be a problem for any administration that attempts to conduct negotiations openly, transparently, and with the interests of the American people foremost.

            Hilarious. Do you really imagine the Repugs sitting quietly by while Joe Biden opens up channels to Russia. And what makes you imagine that anything about such contacts, at least initially while each side explores it's positions, is ever held openly and transparently?

            • Andre 4.3.1.1.1.1

              That "reopen and reset the terms of engagement" made it look like you were claiming there was a good faith effort to act in the interests of the US as a whole, when there plainly wasn't. The conflict of interest wasn’t a minor nuance, strictly personal benefit was the entire effort.

              As far as initial approaches to open up channels, sure, historically there have always been hush-hush back channel negotiations, conducted by the State Department. It may be that CovidCamacho and his minions have so thoroughly fucked things up with respect to Russia that in the future there will need to be some very public positioning before anything substantial can actually happen. As a new way of managing relations, that might not be a bad thing.

              • RedLogix

                historically there have always been hush-hush back channel negotiations, conducted by the State Department.

                And going nowhere under Obama, or pretty much any other President since the end of the Cold War. No vision, no wider goals … strategic drift at it's worst.

                I've made it clear elsewhere, Trump's foreign policy has been nothing but the inelegant charge of a psychopathic bull into a wobbly china shop.

                But here's the thing, of the several million fine people who stood for the Democrat nominee, they all agreed on one thing, that Trump was being too soft on trade.

                Whether layered over with a gentile veneer of 'legality' (like Hunter Biden's antics) or Trump's crass self interest, Washington's approach to Russia and foreign policy points in one direction only … inwards.

                • Andre

                  going nowhere under Obama

                  Given what Obama achieved with Iran and Cuba among others, I'm inclined to attribute lack of progress in Russia-US relations much more to Pootee being a colossal arse rather than Obama's failings. An impression that Pootee's actions since 2016 have only substantially reinforced.

                  • RedLogix

                    Foreign policy is the one area that a President can act in with relatively little pushback from Congress or the Senate. Obama had two whole terms to implement a wholesale refresh and opening up of US foreign policy, to reset the mistakes of the past and reinvigorate the global trade order on a sustainable basis.

                    And it's fair to say he got some things done, but in hindsight it hasn't amounted to much. Much like John Key, heaps of political capital, mainly a bunch of very nice cycleways to show for it.

  5. Molly 5

    Good Guardian article about the removal of the Coulston statue in Bristol.

    There is a large part of me that thinks the statue and others like it should stay in some form. With this proviso, an accompanying dominant sculpture or structure should pair it, informing those who pause to look, about the true nature and efforts of the original person, and how long it has stood as a reminder of corrupted power and historical ignorance.

    I'm sure there are many other city assets named after Edward Coulston.

    My opinion is, don't remove his statue and his name completely. People like him, who have been feted long after their death, despite the nature of their lives, need to be remembered truthfully. And their relationship with persistent power structures and the ongoing resistance to change should be recognised and recorded.

    I'm sure there are a lot of activists and artists around that would come up with a diversity of ways to create paired sculptures – the original one (perhaps changed) to represent the failures of the past to address inequity and wrongdoing, and another to show – truth and progress.

    • RedLogix 5.1

      I agree totally Molly. Human history is complex, nuanced, and deeply fascinating. There is much we can learn from it if we set aside our modern biases and look through the eyes of the people who lived through it.

    • Robert Guyton 5.2

      A cast-bronze scattering of dying slave-women and children about the statue’s feet might provide balance.

      • Molly 5.2.1

        I believe you'd need about 84,000 of them, Robert, to truly reflect his impact.

        (Drilling 84 thousand holes into the original might have some impact, but I'm no creative.)

        I just think that alongside the original atrocities committed by this man, there were accompanying ignorance and failure to recognise his harm by successive governments, councils and communities. The statue stood there for over a hundred years. That needs to be recognised and recorded in some way too.

      • Sabine 5.2.2

        nah, a cast bronze of a white slave holder raping his slave women for 'free slaves' that she will bear him….cause profit – cause that is what it was. Right?

    • weka 5.3

      Putting this one in a museum where the historical and contemporary contexts can be presented seems a reasonable compromise.

      The site the statue was taken from seems a good place to do what you are suggesting, but my sense is it shouldn't involve this statue, because of the recent history.

      • Molly 5.3.1

        That's a good idea. But does remove the discussion from a more visible public space, and that may sweep the reality away. In situations like this, the decision should lie with the local community on how to record and recognise not just the initial problem, but the systems that allowed it to stay prominently displayed for so long.

        • weka 5.3.1.1

          I agree. I gather some of the problem here is that the local council have been ignoring the community on what to do with the statue.

          • Molly 5.3.1.1.1

            That would be true across many countries I would believe. It shows clearly the institutional racism, and the less able to be defined culture that allowed it to prevail for so long.

            On a bit of a tangent, but on the same lines, I had discomfort about a local civic minded group who were funded to beautify the neighbourhood. Their idea, paid for by ratepayers, was to create a side garden on one of the main streets with pseudo gravestones commemorated selected deaths from WWI. We already have cemeteries and war memorial halls aplenty.

            This infusion and constant repetition of what is considered important enough to commemorate, has an insidious effect on sharing knowledge and understanding. When I posted about an Auckland Transport (don't ask me..) project that signposted places around Auckland with tangata whenua links, I had several emails complaining that the land had been utilised by settlers for many years. Which is true. After it was confiscated.

            Those very public – public spaces are important and should contain designs and sculpture that are constant reminders of the society we are aiming for.

      • Sabine 5.3.2

        i would assume that this one statue is only the smallest thing in what is a checkered history going back to what the 1600?

        https://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2018/03/28/592878135/an-english-city-grapples-with-the-slave-trading-past-of-its-most-celebrated-figu

        also Scotland

        https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/time-scotland-reparations-slavery-181126095041892.html

        https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-52950006

        Maybe the best thing that could be done is build a museums to the Slave traders, Slave holders, Slave Masters and their property and what they did with it. Make it free entrance and walk every child through it. Maybe that would change perception?

    • sumsuch 5.4

      I'm glad Churchill's racism has been recognised. The neglect of the Bengal famine. His belief in conquest, despite his words for Britain. No Indian can respect him with full knowledge.

  6. newsense 6

    Hmm, few people attacking or at least suspicious of the SIS pod yesterday. I was ready to give it the benefit of the doubt. I think I said I was wary of Espiner, but he is a capable journo who has done a lot of principled work.

    Quote pulled out today and on the 10am RNZ news is 'anti-nuclear movement' was a gift to the USSR. Which considering the PM's referencing of that is interesting.

    Also there are a lot more issues with the 5 eyes over the last 30 years. Not much use to democracy to only get the 30 year old stuff.

    • Tiger Mountain 6.1

      My post yesterday was to enquire whether Guyon Espiner is essentially a tory–if not attack, then sheep worrier–type of dog. Within hours, Minister Andrew Little was being drawn into it–would he deny authorising Embassy Break Ins? A variation on the classic “when did you stop beating your wife” line of questioning.
      https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/the-service/418531/sis-minister-andrew-little-refuses-to-deny-signing-off-on-embassy-break-ins

      Detailed research on the NZSIS using a new “snout” and reactionaries such as Mr Hensley who was close to traitorous to David Lange during the Nuclear Free NZ period, will certainly be of historic interest–and–it seems as an angle to poke at the current Govt.

      • newsense 6.1.1

        The question is whether that can be considered an attack or just opportunistic promotion for his podcast. There's some cheap shade thrown for sure, but it's also possible he's not responsible for how it's used and which angles are considered newsworthy.

        Given that we are now far from a benign strategic environment do we still take such close cues from our five eyes partners? Our intelligence community seems to be more important than ever. There seems to be much more active work now that the public is mostly unaware of.

  7. ianmac 7

    How kind (opportunistic?) of Mr Muller.

    The National Party has promised to scrap teacher registration fees if it wins the September election.

    The party's new deputy leader and education spokeswoman Nikki Kaye says National would ask taxpayers to pick up the $16 million annual cost of abolishing the fees.

    Teachers' unions have been campaigning against a Teaching Council decision to raise the fee from $220.80 every three years to $157 a year – roughly doubling the annual cost to teachers.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12338288

  8. Peter 8

    The months to the election are going to seem like years if this is to be the daily dross:

    "Paul Goldsmith tells Prime Minister to 'stick to her knitting' after Ardern's outrage as mass job cuts." NZ Herald headline.

    "I don't think it's helpful for the Prime Minister to be criticising struggling businesses, she should stick to her knitting," Goldsmith said. Rather than getting angry, Ardern should be "better focused" on the Government's plan to grow the economy, he said.

    So she makes a remark, she should have used all of the time it took to make the observation and the time should have been used being focused on something else? She was 'outraged'?

    • Andre 8.1

      Well, obviously, she should have been knitting.

    • Sacha 8.2

      Gubmint's job is to lavish subsidies on hard-working companies, not expect accountability from them!

    • AB 8.3

      Therefore Goldsmith believes that 'business' is above any form of democratic oversight, i.e. it's not a part of society, it is superior to it. Good to get such a clear, unambiguous demonstration of National's extremism and how unfit to govern they are.

  9. UncookedSelachimorpha 9

    The stunningly brilliant Rap News take on Black Lives Matter. Years old but unfortunately still totally on message.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqpjSLi2Cfg

    • greywarshark 9.1

      That was good and will surely reach some people who will like the style and some of the message should get through. And so up to date!

  10. greywarshark 10

    https://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO2006/S00072/be-part-of-the-election-team.htm Lots of people needed to help with the election.

    I know a good way for politicians to raise funds and we can all have fun. There should be a Trust set up to run a book on who wins the election, split the funds up with most going to the smaller parties, but the threshhold has to stay at 4% or we'll have more prosperity church types seeing it as a good thing.

    What a pragmatic way to raise funds from a sports-living nation where gambling is useful for funding from raffles at cake stalls, to lotteries of houses in Queensland. Under this veneer of rationality we all want to win something. If it is against the law, then change it. We want laws that help our society.

    [Link fixed]

  11. Peter 11

    Comment on online video about Washington last week and Barr's part in it:

    "Why did the Attorney General gas the crowd? So the chicken could cross the road." I like that.

    The same Barr of “Pepper spray is not a chemical irritant,” he told CBS News. “It’s not chemical.”

  12. joe90 12

    Here's your antifa – a wannabe cop who paraded in his flogged popo kit.

    The Third Precinct was overrun during protests on May 28 and heavily damaged due to vandalism and arson, with investigators identifying multiple fires being started in the building.

    On June 3, St. Paul police officers were called to a home improvement store in St. Paul about an individual, later identified as Wolfe, wearing body armor and a law enforcement duty belt and carrying a baton was trying to get into the store. Store employees said WOLFE had been working as a security guard at the store but was fired earlier that day over social media posts about stealing items from the Third Precinct.

    Police arrested Wolfe and say they found him wearing multiple items stolen from the Third Precinct, including body armor, a police-issue duty belt with handcuffs, an earphone piece, baton, and knife. Officers say Wolfe’s name was handwritten in duct tape on the back of the body armor. Law enforcement says it recovered items belonging to the Minneapolis Police Department, including a riot helmet, 9mm pistol magazine, police radio, and police issue overdose kit, from Wolfe’s apartment.

    https://www.kimt.com/content/news/St-Paul-man-arrested-for–571111961.html

  13. joe90 13

    ouch

  14. ianmac 14

    Kate Hawkesby:"…if the Prime Minister gets her way, no more working from home."

    Has Jacinda actually said that people are not to work from home?

  15. observer 15

    Politicians have been out on the campaign trail today.

    Quality trolling from Ardern, going to a kiwifruit place in Muller's own electorate, getting a warm reception from the locals (sorry, "hard-working Kiwis").

    A wee reminder too – only 2 months ago these were the headlines ..

    A chorus of "the election should be delayed until November" (Paula Bennett, Winston Peters, various media mouths). File that one under Doom & Gloom During Lockdown, a long list, now shredded.

    • Pat 15.1

      Lol…Winston may wish to play for time but would suggest he of all people probably should go asap

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