Open mike 09/11/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 9th, 2021 - 132 comments
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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 …

132 comments on “Open mike 09/11/2021 ”

  1. francesca 1

    Blowback .

    Russia is said by the west to have incited the war in Ukraine, others that the US engineered a coup that was resisted by the eastern Ukrainians .

    But some are far-right extremists who have set their gaze on Ukraine, a place that has become a destination and training ground for such types in the West. As far-right extremism has risen in the US, so has the interest among American white supremacists in militarized right-wing Ukrainian groups that have had success in growing and mainstreaming their organizations and movements. They include violent neo-Nazis like those from the Rise Above Movement who have gone to Ukraine to meet and train with some of the groups — and then export what they learned to the US.

    https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/christopherm51/craig-lang-ukraine-war-crimes-alleged

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    On the blah blah blah front we have blah:

    Felling trees contributes to climate change because it depletes forest cover, which is vital for absorbing carbon dioxide. Forests are, it’s said, being cleared at a rate of 30 football pitches’ worth a minute.

    An agreement to call a halt to this staggering level of deforestation – reached on Tuesday – was one of the high points of Cop26’s first week.

    As part of the deal, more than 100 world leaders agreed to reverse deforestation by 2030. Crucially, Brazil –which has cut down huge stretches of the Amazon rainforest in recent years – was among the signatories. However, observers have pointed out that a previous international agreement, in 2014, failed to slow deforestation in any way.

    Thank blah for that!

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/nov/07/so-what-has-cop26-achieved-so-far

    • lprent 2.1

      Hard to trust the current Brazilian government on anything that they say at present. Especially bearing in mind the increased rate of Amazon clear felling in the last 4 years.

      https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-55130304

      It is like trusting the Australian Federal government to deal with international and bilateral commitments in a manner that doesn’t simply reflect their idiotic and ineffective political system.

      • Dennis Frank 2.1.1

        tell the bastards I’ll never be arrested,” the former army captain told the roaring crowd at the September 7 rally. “Only God can take me from the presidency.” It was music to the ears of Bolsonaro’s hardcore supporters, many of whom had travelled hundreds, if not thousands, of kilometres to cheer on the politician they believe is saving Brazil from its corrupt institutions: in their eyes a deceitful media, a venal Congress and, most importantly, an imperious Supreme Court. For others, including the nearly 65 per cent of Brazilian voters who now disapprove of the Bolsonaro administration — in power since January 2019 — the comments were a clear warning of the president’s growing radicalism and the risk that he may try to undermine, or even abandon, elections scheduled for October 2022…

        The president’s anti-democratic rhetoric has done little to endear him to voters beyond his 20 per cent core support. In addition, he has alienated large parts of Brazil’s influential business community, which backed the former paratrooper as the dark horse candidate in the 2018 race but is now losing faith.

        https://www.ft.com/content/1770b0f8-3740-45db-a032-eedfdb0f8920

      • bwaghorn 2.1.2

        "Hard to trust the current Brazilian government "

        Yet James Shaw wants to tax kiwis and send the money over there as carbon credits, !! What could go wrong??

  3. Peter 3

    The Freedom and Rights Coalition goes to the Auckland / Northland border to impinge on the freedom and rights of others to go about their lawful business.

    • observer 3.1

      Love this bit:

      "At 8am, many protesters had dropped away, leaving 12 to 15 at the border." (Stuff)

      They cast themselves as the great freedom marchers. As we all know, campaigners for Civil Rights in Montgomery and Selma won their battles because they hung around for an hour and then got bored and buggered off.

      • I Feel Love 3.1.1

        Aren't they storming the "wasp hive" today? Arresting the PM etc? It's hard to keep up.

        • UncookedSelachimorpha 3.1.1.1

          Yep, there are anti-1080 flags, trump flags, jeebus flags, something about the Nuremberg trial flags, nazi flags….

          They sure want their idea of Freedum, but what the fuck?

        • francesca 3.1.1.2

          It seems so American, like storming the Capitol, we've been swamped by American culture, firstly Hollywood, now the internet and social media

          • Anne 3.1.1.2.1

            Nov 9, 2021 12:52 PM

            RNZ Live

            People have begun advancing over the barricade at Parliament.

            Yep. They're trying to emulate the Capitol Hill riots. Not surprising given the Trump Brigade seem to have taken over the "Freedom" movement.

            • Treetop 3.1.1.2.1.1

              It is just not the safety of the MPs, people work there, salaried or on contract.

            • joe90 3.1.1.2.1.2

              Emboldened fools are chucking these at the press.

            • Fran 3.1.1.2.1.3

              So about 15000 people in NZ protested today about mandates and govt over reach. Nothing like Jan 6 in America. Politians over reacted and Whipped up fear about over running parliament. Who is crazy, the peaceful protesters or the fear mongers? Get a grip, disagreeing does not make you an enemy of the state.

              • observer

                Disagreeing doesn't.

                Now do some reading. It wasn't "disagreeing", was it?

                If you genuinely believe we live in a dictatorship then you have a right – no, a duty – to revolt. If you don't believe we live in a dictatorship, don't be an apologist for those who say we do.

              • McFlock

                16,000 people got their second dose yesterday.

                A lot of nooses in the crowd for a peaceful protest.

              • Anne

                Peaceful protesters? We have harrassment, intimidation, threats online and in person and violence in general. I note someone bit a policeman today who was just doing his job. And then there is the racism. A few days ago someone smashed the windows of a vaccination centre for our South Pacific peoples.

                Fear mongers? Who is doing the fear mongering and over reacting? The protesters. Spreading crazy conspiracy theories, disinformation, calling people – who are trying to save lives and put their fellow NZers first – Communists, Nazis, Stalinists and a further assortment of highly offensive names.

                There's a name for those who transpose their own misconduct onto other people but have forgotten what it is.

            • Fran 3.1.1.2.1.4

              What rubbish. Peaceful protest about govt mandates and control. Nothing like Jan 6. It is scary that there is a need to demonise or minimise people who disagree with the populist thinking. If your vaccine works then there is nothing to be afraid of. What has happened that we can't cope with differing voices.

              • gsays

                "What has happened that we can't cope with differing voices."

                Part of what has happened is the Prime Otherer saying many times a week, the unvaccinated are responsible for; Christmas being threatened, your freedoms being impacted, businesses going to the wall, your safety being jeopardised, travel being curtailed.

                This is what othering and scare-mongering does.

                The responsibility for our health system being so brittle, vulnerable and understaffed lies at the feet of every centrist Finance, Health and Prime Minister for the last 35 years, not the wary, the contrarians, the reluctant, the immuno-compromised or full-blown anti-vax.

              • Patricia Bremner

                Is "Hang Ardern" ok? or do want us to believe it is just "a bit of slang".

                • RedLogix

                  Only just noticed this – to be crystal clear no it's not. I'd hope the cops track this one down and have a talk with the perpetrator. As a starting point.

                  Otherwise all protests attract idiots on the fringe. The trick is keeping them there and hopefully away from the media.

                • Ad

                  Anyone who takes that as a threat needs their head read.

                  If they get a little chat afterwards from the Police well OK.

                  Otherwise it's a metaphor. I've seen plenty of effigies of Bolger and Shipley burnt with fireworks and tyres on the street.

                  • observer

                    Anyone who takes that as a threat needs their head read.

                    If you can't even be bothered to read the reporting (and there's plenty) then why bother discussing something you choose not to know about?

                    All over social media, all over news media. Inform yourself.

                    Just one example:

                    https://twitter.com/henrycooke/status/1457840568428482562

                    • Ad

                      If someone gets a talking to, I'll believe it's a threat. The Police can assess that better than anyone.

                      The PM can't handle being shouted at in a media conference.

                      At the Foreshore and Seabed march the Labour Ministers who fronted were spat at and and abused far worse.

                    • RedLogix

                      In usual times I'd probably agree completely with you Ad. A healthy democracy can sustain a fair bit of verbal biffo without much harm.

                      But it's my sense that many people have been psychologically activated by COVID, by the uncertainty, the social isolation and above all the chronic state of low-grade fear being pumped at them. In these circumstances I'd want to be extra cautious around inflammatory language – especially if it's political.

                      I recall you're a fan of World War Z – well I've always imagined zombies to be a metaphor for the mind-killed, unthinking mob.

                    • Ad

                      All those protests we went in our tens of thousands in the mid-eighties armed with lots of weapons and shields and heavily orchestrated moves and taking on the state,

                      in our many thousands in the '90s against union-crushing and benefit reductions and privatisations,

                      in our lower thousands in the early noughties, …

                      … look at them now in their hundreds.

                      WE used to have that same fire. We inflamed wholesale.

                      We used to forge whole new political movements on it.

                      All of those leftie marches looked like anarchistic unthinking undead to the majority and to the government.

                      But probably the Tooth Fairy will get the shits and call in the Minister for SIS for a chat, because actually she's the biggest flake we have. Spare us from brittle authoritarians.

                      Someone sing me Rage Against the Machine.

                  • Patricia Bremner

                    I would normally agree, but the threats on the internet are downright scary. Thanks Observer.
                    “The tooth etc” Get a grip Ad .You sound flaky. Saying stuff like that at this time is unhelpful.

                    • Robert Guyton

                      I think the casual references to lynching etc. that I see and hear across Facebook, among people who have till recently posted interesting, heart-warming things, is very worrying indeed. They seem unaware of the sinister tone of their words. I believe their world-view has been contaminated by the American situation and the influencers who whipped that up.

      • bwaghorn 3.1.2

        Probably only the ones on benefits left!!😏

  4. Dennis Frank 4

    Rod Oram, economist gone Green:

    The UN has assigned Climate Minister James Shaw a key negotiating role in this final week of the CO26 meeting in Glasgow.

    He will co-facilitate the Transparency workstream with Sir Molwyn Joseph, Minister of Health, Wellness and the Environment of Antigua and Barbuda, a Caribbean nation. “Since the Paris Agreement does not have compliance and enforcement measures, transparency is a critical component for enabling accountability and trust,” Chatham House, a leading UK policy institute, wrote in a paper shortly before the start of the negotiations. Progress on the workstream is considered vital to ensure comparability of nations’ climate pledges and integrity in measuring and reporting their implementation. It is also vital for the trustworthiness of carbon markets, both regulatory and voluntary.

    For the record, the largest single “delegation” of officially registered attendees at COP26 is the 503 people with links to fossil fuel interests, Global Witness, an NGO reported today.

    By comparison, Brazil is largest country delegation, with 479 members. The UK, as hosts, has the 10th largest delegation, with 230, and the US has 135 official delegates. New Zealand’s is likely the smallest from a developed country, numbering fewer than 10.

    And I bet they're all wearing suits. The visual signal that one is actually part of the control system whilst pretending to be part of the solution is obligatory. I predict only Lab/Nat voters will be fooled by the simulation.

  5. Dennis Frank 5

    Blah? APEC has managed what the UN couldn't; an online conference.

    The largest piece of work facing APEC leaders is putting the finishing touches on an implementation plan for the “Putrajaya Vision” agreed to in 2020, a high-level outline of the organisation’s priorities for the next two decades. “We are working on a set of individual and collective actions that will be measurable, that will be concrete, and that will be dynamic: in other words, this will be a living document that we will be able to review every five years to ensure that it genuinely is fit for purpose for our region,” Vitalis said.

    Kiwi diplomat Vangelis Vitalis anticipates "the time for actual action, to actually do something."

    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/politics/nzs-digital-apec-time-for-actual-action

    Beyond blah? I'll believe that if I ever see it…

  6. Herodotus 6

    18 & 10 Years ago we had a couple of opportunities for the government at the time to buy this gem. Hopefully someone will attract the attention of Hon Kiritapu Allan to IMO.

    I posted support to purchasing this way back in 2011, and back then the Labour blog and the then leader Phil Goff urged National to purchase had a post to support such an acquisition !!!

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/tide-turning-on-coastal-property-prices/46VLFYEZAOT2CICJQ3WLSXMMLY/

    https://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO2111/S00079/new-chums-headland-for-sale-needs-permanent-protection-says-eds.htm

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/4509605/Message-to-protect-New-Chums-Beach

    . https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-14102011/#comment-385591
    ps great to be able to search for posts 10+ years ago well done to the administrators who manage this site 👍🏾

  7. Pete 7

    Small school in limbo as all staff refuse mandatory Covid-19 vaccine.

    "She said she was not opposed to getting the vaccination herself, but as the only fully registered teacher she had not been able to take time off to get her shot."

    A school teacher I know took time off to get her shot recently – in the school holiday break. It was two weeks long.

    The principal wants the Ministry of Education to waive the vaccination mandate and instead require weekly testing. I'm not sure how they'll able to "take time off" for that every week.

    It's sort of funny when teachers who force people to do things they mightn't want to do rail against being told to do something.

    Central King Country Principals' Association chairwoman Maria Gillard said convincing those not wanting to vaccinate to change their minds was tough. Like it being tough to get kids to change their minds I suppose except that in the school environment power rules. Those with the power deem that they know best and the kids should bow to that 'superiority' of knowledge.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/coronavirus/300449404/small-school-in-limbo-as-all-staff-refuse-mandatory-covid19-vaccine

    • observer 7.1

      The problem starts at the top:

      "None of the school's board of trustees were vaccinated either."

      • alwyn 7.1.1

        Do you think any teacher who wanted to get vaccinated would dare to do so in the face of the display by the Board of Trustees? On your bike would I expect to be their response.

        As for the Principal who "hadn't been able to take time off to get vaccinated". There were school holidays from the second to the seventeenth of October. She couldn't find any single day on which to get a vaccination?

        • Pete 7.1.1.1

          I'm trying to think how or why the principal would know the vaccination status of the members of the board and what relevance it would be to her past any requirements made on the non-vaccinated not being accepted in the school.

          A board can't get rid of a staff member because they choose to be vaccinated. Members of a board setting out to make sure a principal in such circumstances is unwelcome and seeking to force them out would be showing they are fuckwits who should not have anything to do with a school. That is the sort of stuff for employment courts.

          In such a situation if the locals are on about individual choice and no compulsion they would be be taking the choice away from the principal and in some senses forcing the principal to not get a vaccination.

          Can't staff the school? No problem. Close it. Bus the kids into Taumarunui or Ongarue. Can't staff those schools because they're backwaters and no-one would want to be there? Some might say the attitude of the locals suggests it is a backwater.

    • DukeEll 7.2

      Crazy that these are the people we are mandated to trust with our childrens education

  8. AB 8

    Many people have rightly noted how challenging the logistics of policing Auckland's border will be at Xmas – as 30,000 people a day leave in their cars. I think some of those same people were less convinced of the logistical challenges of doing some other things – such as stopping Covid leaks from MIQ, or rolling out millions of vaccine doses.

    Rule of thumb seems to be: if I do want something to happen, the logistics aren't an issue and someone else just needs to do it; if I don't want something to happen, the logistics are impossible and the idea should be abandoned.

    People's supposed principles and their logic seem to align uncannily well with their self-interest. Who wouldn't be a misanthrope at times like this?

    • Treetop 8.1

      Everyone needs a plan B every day from now on when it comes to travelling, shopping for non essentials and entertaining. People need to consider being unwell with Covid or having a person unwell with Covid in your household.

      It is about doing the right thing for yourself, your home and your neighbourhood.

      Protesters are not considering the households of the police, some have babies and young children in the home and are on the frontline. No pay rise and the work conditions would be terrible when it comes to managing groups breaking the rules.

  9. roy cartland 9

    In case anyone missed it, Daniel Ellsberg was on Kim Hill. He said he believes that JA is the best PM in the world. High praise indeed.

    (around 25mins)

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/audio/player?audio_id=2018819433

    • Blazer 9.1

      Good interview.Ellsberg was interesting and very sharp @90.

      Hill has little sympathy for Assange as she showed once again.

    • Patricia Bremner 9.2

      Yes I heard that. The young don't listen to Kim hill or a ninety year old guest, no matter what they say.

  10. weka 10

    Remarkable photo, those three flags at a protest outside of parliament.

    https://twitter.com/writeonleah/status/1457793131533856770?s=21

  11. Ad 11

    Minister Wood opines in a long article on the GreaterAuckland blog about the preferred mode for Auckland light rail.

    The Minister's View on Light Rail – Greater Auckland

    He has put his entire credibility on its success with this article, and essentially requests that the GreaterAuckland activists hold off criticising for fear of killing the project as the Auckland Cycle Path was.

    This is an unusual move for a Minister to make on multiple counts. In political terms it is pretty bold.

  12. Dennis Frank 12

    Surprise!! Gordon Campbell has a sense of humour.

    Over recent weeks, the “damned if you do/damned if you don’t” dimensions of government policy have been somewhat amusing.

    http://werewolf.co.nz/2021/11/gordon-campbell-on-the-politics-of-hoping-for-the-best/

    once we hit the magic 90% number and restrictions ease, the community could still be looking at 20 cases of infection arriving in its midst from offshore every week. Hopefully, home isolation will screen some of those out. Or as indicated above, this could just mean that the family/whanau home will become a potential incubator for the disease. Well, the marriage vows did say through sickness and health.

    our handling of the Covid threat coming at us from offshore seems out of sync with our handling of the internal threat – if that’s the right word – that Auckland will pose to the rest of the country once the three Auckland region DHBs have hit their magical 90% full vaccination target.

    The joke is on… whoever God's will decides. I wonder if the govt will force Aucklanders to wear an identification symbol so we can see them coming and keep our distance?? The yellow star worked well a while back, eh?

    • Maurice 12.1

      "The yellow star worked well a while back, eh?"

      How about a Jaffa jammed up each nostril?

      … if we can still find those

    • Ad 12.2

      We will ride by the tens of thousands, swathed in black cloaks, holding our credit cards aloft.

  13. UncookedSelachimorpha 13

    Fascinating story on change in the demographics of Covid 19 deaths in the USA. Compared to the first 100k deaths (no vaccines), the most recent 100k deaths (Delta + vaccines available) are:

    • more white
    • more rural
    • younger
    • less comorbid
    • more Southern

    Vaccination rates seem to be driving most of it.

    Differences in the Covid-19 death rate by political affiliation are also rapidly widening, with Trump-supporting counties suffering three times higher death rates than Biden-supporting counties. Vaccination rates again seem to be key, with 40% of Republican adults unvaccinated compared to only 10% of Democratic adults.

    • SPC 13.1

      At some point it will dawn on the GOP they will have to cast votes for those who died to win elections – I wonder how they will enable this for white voters only, or do they expect SCOTUS to rubber stamp everything put up?

  14. SPC 14

    It seems Wellington (on a good day) has flushed out those of profoundly anti-democratic sentiments. From those with throbbing power between their legs (a hint of SA with overtones of ambition to be King Bishop Brian's blackshirts) to those who would like it all to go away and think appeasing the coronavirus will set them free from any resistance struggle (leaving the burden to health workers).

    The elitism of the bare-faced contempt for majority opinion and the public good … the uber-romanticisation of social media minority echo chambers displayed … from a self-appointed governing aristocracy of no bodies in the Maori world claiming to represent its sovereignty to affluent PMC (the neo-liberal corporate regime enabling corporate and capitalist dominance ) ideologues manipulating discontent for their political purposes (and we await National waking up their inner Mr Orewa to take advantage of the chaos).

    I say prescribe them all ivermectin to be on the way – rid the capitol hill of that small party worm.

    7,935 Dolphin Jumping Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images - iStock

    • SPC 14.1

      "This aligns with an increasing use of Māori voices,narratives, and imagery for agendas of white supremacist individuals and groups," the study noted – the goal being to make Māori as a population appear to be anti-vaccination, which results in "the intensification of anti-Māori racism" and makes them more susceptible to future disiformation campaigns

      https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2021/11/coronavirus-100-fold-increase-in-kiwis-following-disinformation-groups-online-study.html

      • RedLogix 14.1.1

        the goal being to make Māori as a population appear to be anti-vaccination,

        Which when they had the lowest vaccination rates was kind of easy to do. And given that this time the usual 'it's all the fault of a racist health system' doesn't quite fly – they're reduced to blaming 'white supremacist people' again.

        This constant ethnic power struggle narrative will lead NZ nowhere good.

        • SPC 14.1.1.1

          The explainer

          1. Maori has a younger age demographic – so were a larger proportion of those who could not vaccinated till September (go to MOH vaccination stats and check the vaccinations by age).
          2. Maori advocated for Maori to be vaccinated earlier so their vaccination rate would not be slower because of their age and because Maori had poorer health. The government chose otherwise (possibly influenced by the He Puapua issue NACT raised) – Maori are saying told ya so.

          There are more younger Maori in the provincial NI, these HB's were behind the rest in September and are doing catch up – and in areas where the population is quite spread out.

          • RedLogix 14.1.1.1.1

            All good and fair points SPC. They underline my contention that the best explanation for different outcomes is not always racism.

            I was equally scathing of Reti's attempt to use the ethnic card on vaccines as well. I'm vividly conscious that in a pandemic there is real potential for the kind of mass psychosis that leads very directly to violence.

            Yes racism and ethnic fault lines are real – but using them as a power play is unbelievably dangerous. Sometime in the 90's I remember listening to a 30 min BBC "Foreign Correspondent" report on Yugoslavia and the hell that got unleashed in that country after the fall of the dictators.

            The reporter led with a simple question. Why is it that a relatively modern nation fall apart so fast and dramatically? If you had visited the place before these horrors you might have come home and said what warm and friendly people they are. After exploring this question and setting the social and political background the narrative shifted from the general to the specific.

            It moved to a small town that had seen some of the worst violence. I still cannot bring myself to type out the atrocity that was described in graphic detail by the correspondent. But the point was – the people who did this to each other were neighbours, they knew each other, as had their families for generations. How the fuck had this happened?

            The answer is this. Every society has a small fraction of psychopathic, resentful damaged individuals who will commit horrors for the sheer pleasure and gratification of it. Normally they're kept in check by social boundaries and institutional norms. But they lurk.

            But when that leash is loosened by public figures exploiting divisions within any society for their own political purposes – during a period of instability, uncertainty and fear – that first these dangerous people will feel emboldened to act. And then very rapidly – one atrocity upon another – the Yugoslavian nation unraveled into hell.

            None are immune. Guard against this.

            • SPC 14.1.1.1.1.1

              The irony being that Croat, Serb and Bosnian Moslem probably had the same ancestral group – carving out separate borders occurs by acceptance of then then regional arrangements or by plebiscite or by war (also Pakistan and India and say the land west of the Jordan). Apparently events in Bosnia are worsening, the Serb and Croat political leadership are seeking to divide up the Bosnian military and form their own.

    • alwyn 14.2

      I think we have to take it, from the photo, that the COP 26 outcome is a failure and that the dolphins are all leaving.

      Can't you hear it whistling "So long and thanks for all the fish"?

      • SPC 14.2.1

        I was going for Florida man mulitplying via social media.

        The dolphin is only observing.

      • bwaghorn 14.2.2

        Cant say I blame them the stupid going on is just getting to much.

        Although if I self identify as a cetacean I wonder if they'll take me withim??

        • SPC 14.2.2.1

          Don't worry the white race God is going to rapture its mammalian Greek brotherhood …

          The middle ear contains three tiny bones:
          Hammer (malleus) — attached to the eardrum.
          Anvil (incus) — in the middle of the chain of bones.
          Stirrup (stapes) — attached to the membrane-covered opening that connects the middle ear with the inner ear (oval window)

          As they say beware defenestration (1618), Des Gorman would know very well that coming out of a flood of judgment has to be done carefully or there may be consequences.

    • theotherpat 14.3

      so long and thanks for all the fish…………..

  15. Dennis Frank 15

    Van the Man lacks a fan:

    Northern Ireland's health minister is suing Van Morrison after the singer called him "very dangerous" for his handling of coronavirus restrictions. Morrison, 76, who was knighted in 2016, has dismissed the coronavirus pandemic – the death toll for which surpassed 5 million people last week – as media hype and has criticised Covid-19 restrictions though his music.

    He denounced Northern Ireland Health Minister Robin Swann during a gathering at Belfast's Europa Hotel in June after a Morrison concert was canceled at the last minute because of virus restrictions. The defamation suit relates to three incidents in which Morrison criticised Swann, calling him "a fraud" and "very dangerous."

    Swann responded in an article for Rolling Stone magazine, calling the "Moondance" singer's claims "bizarre and irresponsible." Swann's lawyer, Paul Tweed, said proceedings "are at an advanced stage with an anticipated hearing date early in 2022."

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/entertainment/northern-ireland-minister-sues-van-morrison-over-covid-19-criticism/S6XSH32FRQRYSHRKTHUZ34GMCQ/

  16. observer 16

    This is the language used by a main speaker at today's Wellington protest. (Note – not some random drunken vox pop, not a fringe freeloader, but the chosen speaker from "Freedoms and Rights", the Brian Tamaki group).

    Ardern trying to create a Communist nation. Auckland "the largest concentration camp in the world". "This is our 9/11 in New Zealand… people have come to signal the collapse of the Government … a dictatorship".

    "We are not standing here waiting for another three years when the next election rolls down … We will roll this place and take them out with a revolution of the people."

    (citation: https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2021/11/live-updates-latest-on-covid-19-community-outbreak-tuesday-november-9.html)

    Now imagine somebody at a leftie demo talking about a National government in those terms. The SIS would be watching them like a hawk. And did.

    • SPC 16.1

      The cossacks are dancing.

      Cannot find image of Massey's Cossacks on quad bikes

    • Ad 16.2

      You can be confident all those speakers have files on them already.

      Anyway, as of tomorrow the shopping will cure most of the protests.

    • weka 16.3

      Ardern trying to create a Communist nation.

      Standard right wing position. Probably a Dirty Politics memo.

      Auckland "the largest concentration camp in the world".

      I've seen centre left Aucklanders on TS say similar (with a somewhat more retrained rhetoric)

      "This is our 9/11 in New Zealand…

      Kind of true. Big even that shifts political and social culture, and includes given the government more powers to control the population.

      people have come to signal the collapse of the Government … a dictatorship".

      "We are not standing here waiting for another three years when the next election rolls down … We will roll this place and take them out with a revolution of the people."

      That will be in the SIS and police files, and it's part of the dangerous that Mihi Forbes is naming. It ties into the right's use of Trumpian politics (also dangerous). It's why we should be concerned and looking at the deeper reasons for the mix of dynamics rather than just framing it as US imports. Those three flags.

      • SPC 16.3.1

        At its core it’s the language of fascism – mob activity on the street as the source of political legitimacy.

        9/11 – as a pretext to posit "overthrow" of a government.

        It's one small step from DT boasting he could shoot and kill and get away with it, to legitimising those serving his empowerment being able to do the same.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 16.4

      Some at the rally are soldiers for the endarkenment.

    • I Feel Love 16.5

      Like the OTT debacle of the Tuhoe Raids. Who can forget the cow catapult.

    • Janet 16.6

      Yes the words from a megalomaniac, Brian Tamaki.

  17. Cricklewood 17

    The protests today are another downside of wide spread manadates. They pushing what were previously productive members of society into the margins and arms of existing fringe groups emboldened by an influx of numbers and the camouflage they provide.

    Add today's lot to groundswell who will be invigorated by three waters reforms its potentially going to get very messy. Especially if Police are mandated and all of a sudden we find ourselves 1200 short in the face of increasingly angry protest groups.

    We'll get to 90% vaxxed so for long term societal benefit and to diffuse things a bit we should back away from the wide spread mandates and move towards a rapid testing focused approach as well as recent pcr testing to activate a short term passport.

    • Poission 17.1

      The presence of patched bodgies should raise concerns.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 17.2

      Good points.

      Not so sure the PCR test passports would reduce angst. Some of these protestors have some pretty weird theories about the tests too…and are against any sort of social cooperation requirement generally.

      • observer 17.2.1

        Yes. One of the demands from the "Freedoms and Rights Coalition" is to shut down testing stations.

        The gov't could either a) waste time and energy trying to reason with people who have already decided the gov't are commies/nazis/apartheid/Voldemort.

        or b) just carry on with all the public health measures and let the ranters rant.

        None of this is uncharted territory. The playbook was written in the USA. Some had deathbed conversions, some didn't. They have to get there in their own time – or not.

      • Cricklewood 17.2.2

        It wont make the hard core anti vax conspiracy theorists happy.

        But the numbers have built due to unhappiness with mandates. Plenty of people find that a step to far. Get rid of mandates and the crowd will be 100s not thousands. I really feel we need to get some heat out of this having it get ugly isnt good for anyone in the end.

    • gsays 17.3

      "The protests today are another downside of wide spread manadates."

      "We'll get to 90% vaxxed so for long term societal benefit and to diffuse things a bit we should back away from the wide spread mandates and move towards a rapid testing focused approach…"

      Thanks for pointing this out.

      A bit like current job site drug testing. The P freak can be fried all day and will test negative the next day, the midnight toker will be positive, even if not impaired while at work.

      Akin to Paula Bennett's meth hysteria in state housing and the upset that caused to so many. But they were in state housing so 'nothing to see here'.

  18. Stuart Munro 18

    shopping will cure most of the protests – another free market miracle is it?

    You know, I think I'd rather see them run headlong into the rule of law. Waiting for shopping to cure things is how you get an enduring Trumpist movement – screw that. There's incitement going on there, with their Nuremberg and citizens arrest bullshit. Throw the (deleted expletives) in prison and let them out through the courts, where they can get a full measure of the scorn in which they are held.

  19. McFlock 19

    On a separate note, this Dunedin story keeps getting worse and worse.

    80 hour weeks at a bakery turned into sub-minimum wage was the opener a day or two back.

    Now it includes:

    • copious threats of detailed harm;
    • intimidation by associates of the employer;
    • wage theft from employees to pay for food and accommodation in "appalling conditions"; and
    • some decisions delayed until the court of appeal rules on "another relevant case".

    My coffee card for their cafe is half used. And will remain that way. That's fucking disgusting. I know hospo tends to use wage theft and bullying as a business model, but even for that industry this is pretty extreme.

    • weka 19.1

      Good to see some of these cases making it through the ERA, but I would guess there are more we and they just don't know about. And the original complaint was in 2017.

      Do we still have a Labour department? Is that who the inspectors were?

      • McFlock 19.1.1

        Yep. The Labour Inspectorate conducts an investigation and can take a case to the ERA.

        With the amount of issues involved, this case would have taken a lot of time, especially as some of the issues apparently occurred during the investigation, so would have needed further examination.

        Then there are the complicated financial arrangements, reviewing of documents like timesheets and employees' personal records, then the accounts to see how much gain their might have been.

        Throw in a covid delay or two, timeframes for right of response and consultation with lawyers, staff workloads at the inspectorate, an xmas break or three… But the wheels turned inexorably, if slowly, to deliver some justice.

        • Cricklewood 19.1.1.1

          Imo this should be in criminal court.

          Theft as a servant is a criminal matter so should delibrate wage theft. This sort of shit deserves criminal conviction.

  20. Pete 20

    Apparently we have a "dictatorship."

    I guess before the government makes any decision about anything, on any issue, they are meant to ask the population what should happen. I'm not sure whether that's by way of referenda.

    Imagine it, February last year the announcement:

    "There's a weird new flu-like virus. It looks like it's going to be a pandemic affecting just about every country in the world. It seems probable that many millions will get the virus and many hundreds of thousands, maybe millions, will die.

    What do you think we should do? We are inviting written submissions. You have three weeks to get your ideas in. Note: we are inviting submissions from epidemiologists, immunologists and other scientists.

    From the submissions we will formulate a plan. The intention is to repeat this exercise each month after implementation so that everyone is involved on our journey."

    Apparently too, we had an election not so long ago. A government was elected, to govern.

    Malcontents pissed off that their favourites were slaughtered at the ballot booth are throwing their toys out of the cot. For the noisy minority, a rabble including professionals piqued the mass of experts didn't pick their game plan, joined by an assortment of toerags, the terminally disaffected and out and out fruit loops, it's party time.

  21. SPC 21

    As COP 26 concludes, one can remember when the last Maunder minimum occurred.

    It coincided with the 30 Years War, the English Civil War and the Fronde in France. It got colder and so less agricultural production. Discontent was expressed in printed pamphlets (the bible was weaponised in the social media of the day).

    Then there was the period of the Sea Peoples, a century or so of of regional drought and people migrating … with force.

    Environmental factors, incl weather, can destablise civil society.

    • McFlock 21.1

      Weren't the Sea Peoples ancient Greece, like 1000bc?

      • SPC 21.1.1

        Movement into Greece, the Hittites lost control of western Anatolia, movement out of Greece … the arrival in Gaza … the attacks on Egypt. Peak c 1200BCE.

        • McFlock 21.1.1.1

          Ah, so not the little ice age. My history order has been a bit off lately, thought this was another instance lol

      • Dennis Frank 21.1.2

        Circa 1500 BC, maybe a century earlier, according to sources I've read. Dating it is via circumstantial evidence only. But he was referring to a separate climate trigger for those invasions, not the Maunder.

        It was the Maunder that killed off the viking settlements in Greenland which had done okay for around five or so centuries. Inuit in Greenland survived due to their more resilient economy. I've even seen it asserted authoritatively that the Greenland vikings died because they refused to catch fish!!

        Note how they refuse to ascribe a causal inference to the Maunder even though it looks suspiciously so. They frame it as correlative only: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Ice_Age

        • SPC 21.1.2.1

          One event impacting economic life c1600-1500BCE would have been the Santorini/Thira eruption.

          (Egypt was overun by the Hyksos shortly before this).

          As I said, the Sea peoples migrations were consequence of drought.

          The interesting thing about the Maunder minimum period 1600's CE, was its coincidence with an early form of social media (printing pamphlets to disseminate dissent).

          Environmental factors, incl media transforming the social environment can destablise civil society.

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