Open mike 09/06/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 9th, 2012 - 73 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 link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

73 comments on “Open mike 09/06/2012”

  1. Carol 1

    Further thoughts on dissent in the US, carrying on from yesterday’s conversation.

    One of the main things I’ve have heard from US apologists for their country’s imperialism, is that the US is the home of free speech, dissent and democracy. They claim that this is why so many people try to migrate to the US.

    However, while the US does have many dissenters within their country – enough to support the notion that they are a free, open and democratic society – this dissent does nothing to challenge or really unsettle the power of the elites. They have ways of neutralising the dissent:

    The American media deploys a deep and varied arsenal of rhetorical devices in order to marginalise opinions, people and organisations as “outside the mainstream” and therefore not worth listening to. For the most part the people and groups being declaimed belong to the political Left. To take one example, the Green Party – well-organised in all 50 states – is never quoted in newspapers or invited to send a representative to television programmes that purport to present “both sides” of a political issue. (In the United States, “both sides” means the back-and-forth between centre-right Democrats and rightist Republicans)

    The US government has long used popular culture to spread their propaganda about being a free and open democracy. The US government, in the early-to-mid 20th century used the international circulation of Hollywood movies to precede trade agreements, in order to soften up the population, and encourage their acceptance of US products:

    <blockquote.The State Department and the OWI intervened in other overseas markets as well, particularly in neutral Europe and in the Axis nations toward the end of the war. And as the government became more sensitive to America’s image abroad, it became more concerned about Hollywood’s role in projecting that image.

    And, of course, with the rise of so-called “neoliberalism” and the Murdochisation of the news media, such strategies have been transported across the western world.

    The US government has also used TV and popular music in the Middle East, Iraq etc, to promote it’s culture to the locals – part of their programme of cultural imperialism. And the US government is quite happy at times to highlight dissenting music etc to promote their image of being an open democracy. And dissenting popular culture is also used as a marketing strategy, especially in targeting young people. By getting sucked into the capitalist machinery, they get contained, and a target for underlying US imperialising values.

    I DO know many US people who express criticism and dissatisfaction with their country’s lack of social justice, and of it’s imperialistic ways. But they also get very frustrated with the inability to stage effective dissent.

    In my opinion, people who want to go to live in the US, do so, not because they see it as a shining beacon of freedom of speech and democracy, but because of the potential to get in on some of the wealth and shiny technological advances.

    But a lot of the US’s technological advances are gained through enticing many of the best researchers and product developers from other countries to their unis and corporate R&D departments. Also, while the US talks free-market, it practices protectionism, often in slightly devious ways e.g. the ways it protects the Hollywood movie industry internationally.

    And, a lot of these strategies are no longer so confined to the US…. coming soon to a place near you, dressed in local colours.

    • fatty 1.1

      “The US government has long used popular culture to spread their propaganda about being a free and open democracy.”

      Very true…I had just posted this on yesterday’s open mike…
      I would add a third thing that maintains US hegemony…and that is culture. Americanisation in the form of consumerism is still sweeping the world and shows no sign of slowing. Its the desire to consume, a belief in liberal capitalism, social liberalism and the notion of ‘freedom’ that draws the world’s money towards the USA. Capitalism put the money into the hands of a few – and since American culture defines our desires, that money moves towards America.
      China might be up there in economic terms, but the USA controls the world’s knowledge. USA defines the ‘truth’.

      “The US government has also used TV and popular music in the Middle East, Iraq etc, to promote it’s culture to the locals – part of their programme of cultural imperialism.”

      They sure do, and they also did it the other way where the East is Othered through Hollywood…as Western culture is idolised, Eastern cultures are subjugated.
      Edward Said’s concept of Orientalism examines where USA’s true power is created and maintained. Its all about seduction and cultural hegemony

      • Carol 1.1.1

        For once we are pretty much in agreement, fatty. Yes, I read your other piece on it,

        As I recall Said, in his book on orientalism, begins his historiography of imperialism well before the rise of US Imperialism. he goes back to the Greeks – indeed, while western culture claims a tradition going back to ancient “Greece”, a lot of the ancient Athenian knowledge was acquired first from Babylon and the Persian Empire.

        Said was a lit crit and (perhaps inadvertently) shows the difference between English cultural imperialism the US version (albeit that US culture and imperialism was mapped onto the English/European version in many ways).

        The English version was tied to the “civilising mission”, whereby they believed England/Europe was the peak of civilised society. So they promoted a more classical version of “high” culture (Shakespeare etc) to be spread throughout the world – also their ideas about education, science and technology.

        As the US form of imperialism is justified by the promotion of themselves as being the home of democracy and individual freedom, they promote it through popular culture (culture of the people). Of course, popular culture in the age of mechanical reproduction, is transmitted via new forms of “state of the art” technologies. It amalgamates the US’s view of itself as the leaders in science and technology – but that is also tied up with their militarism – a technologically-advanced form of military power. And as you say, the popular culture is incorporated within consumerism.

        However, they are increasingly getting some competition from non-Western parts of the world in many of these areas…. though not so much with the military

        • fatty

          “For once we are pretty much in agreement, fatty.”

          I think we agree on almost everything Carol…just different perspectives on identity politics and generational issues

    • OneTrack 1.2

      You didn’t answer the original conjecture – why do so many want to emigrate to the US?

      • Carol 1.2.1

        I did answer the conjecture, but it probably got lost in my incorrect attempt to format the quote above it (Was in a rush before going to work). The quote from the link is:

        The State Department and the OWI intervened in other overseas markets as well, particularly in neutral Europe and in the Axis nations toward the end of the war. And as the government became more sensitive to America’s image abroad, it became more concerned about Hollywood’s role in projecting that image.

        The rest are my views, including this:
        In my opinion, people who want to go to live in the US, do so, not because they see it as a shining beacon of freedom of speech and democracy, but because of the potential to get in on some of the wealth and shiny technological advances.

  2. Stephen Franks comments on a defamation case:

    I do not know whether Trevor Mallard and Andrew Little (both of whom I respect) made false statements about Judith Collins. If they were false I do not know whether they were calculated, reckless or just careless. That will be for a court to determine. But I do know they are scoffing at defamation law.

    More importantly he looks at free speech versus “casual liars”.

    Defamation law is the safeguard against false coin in the competitive marketplace of ideas. A Gresham’s law may apply in public debate, where unpunishable recklessness, and scandalous accusation would crowd out sober truth.

    An assumption that usually you can trust what someone is telling you, and particularly your leaders or would-be leaders, is a vital element of social capital. New Zealand is currently a high trust country according the the World Values Survey.

    High profile defamation cases remind casual liars they could pay a price help to preserve our trust in the honesty of others until proved otherwise. So proceedings that keep open the threat of a cost for reckless allegations are in the public interest.

    There does need to be a way of addressing deliberate and repeat lying for political gain. Defamation law is far from ideal but it’s one of a limited number of options currently available.

    More effective would be more public and media insistence on political honesty. And more party and blog insistence on honesty would help too.

    • Pascal's bookie 2.1

      Like when bloggers accuse teachers of teaching kids to hate the PM. that sort of thing?

      Or when they call the Greens watermelons?

      Or accuse others of acting from base motives and consistently assume their opponents really just want to bring down the government by any means?

      Shocking behaviour, and tiresome, I agree.

      • Pete George 2.1.1

        consistently assume their opponents really just want to bring down the government by any means

        Who “consistently assumes” that?

        I don’t see anyone as “opponents”. There are things I disagree with and will speak against, and there are things that I agree with and will speak for. And I’ll work with anyone who I think deserves support.

        • Pascal's bookie

          And you’re quite free with the smears too Pete. Calling the greens watermelons. That’s pretty nasty. You do know what it means right?

          And saying that teachers are teaching children to hate the PM. Nasty mate. Nasty.

          • Pete George

            How nasty is it to misrepresent what someone said?

            Quoting myself:

            If children are being schooled to “hate” any politician it reflects very poorly on the teacher or teachers involved. If that’s what’s happened I think it’s disgraceful.

            Teachers have admitted organising children on letter writing and emailing campaigns directed at politicians. Duncan Garner said his daughter came home saying “”Well, he’s going to close our cooking and technology classes at our school. So we all hate him”. She that came from school, with a fairly strong presumption that teachers were involved.

            If that’s the case (and I say “if” again) I don’t think it’s a good thing for teachers to be getting kids involved in like that.

            • Pascal's bookie

              Stop lying Pete.

              It’s not just Parata that’s coming out of this looking bad (and she looks bad).

              Children have been used as pawns by teachers in their politicking, that’s unprofessional – but schooling kids to hate the Prime Minister is worse.


              • And stop misrepresenting.

                Don’t you think it would be worse if that’s what they’re doing? Or does that not bother you. I think it is worse if it’s happening. And funnily enough, I haven’t seen anyone deny that it has happened, all they try and do is try and divert with attacks.

                Maybe you should have a think about what could be seen as nasty tactics. You’re coming across as a bit hypocritical. Is this targetting an obsession or a mission?

                • Pascal's bookie

                  And stop misrepresenting.

                  I quoted you making the assertions Pete. You have no basis whatsoever for the assertions. These are intermediate kids, they are quite capable of forming opinions.

                  It’s a baseless smear, you kmow it, dogs know it, little fishes in the sea know it.

                  Just because you want to talk about goat fucking, that doesn’t mean that the people you want to talk about with regard to goat fucking are any obligation to deny goat fucking. Even if you’ve seen a grumpy goat. Goats are grumpy critters, and kids form opinions.

                  • OneTrack

                    You are right, he shouldn’t call the Green’s watermelons as that is incorrect. They are really deep-red, hard-left socialists. Oh, by the way, they talk about the environment occasionally, but borrow, tax and spend comes first, every time.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      See Pete?

                      OneTrack laid it out.

                      Fact is onetrack wouldn’t know hard left or deep red if one popped up in his cornflakes and nationalised his nutsack, but at least he’s not a mealy mouthed, butter wouldn’t melt his arse, bell end.

                    • Maybe there’s a meaning of watermelon I don’t know about, but as far as I know it’s a mild label, and more descriptive than many of the names that are thrown around here.

                      A student from Auckland recently said the fashionable insult there is neoliberal. Thta’s spat around her a bit too, along with many others.

                      So far here today I’ve been referred to as nasty, rightwinger, idiot, pants on fire, helpless Key apologist, gutless passively aggressive, utterly banal, boring old git, annoying, disingenuous as hell, mealy mouthed, butter wouldn’t melt his arse, bell end. And that’s just on this OM.

                      And you fake indignation at me using “watermelon” (once some time ago?).

                      Isn’t that a tad hypocritical considering the insults you dish out?

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      It’s not hypocritical at all Pete. We’ve had that discussion before.

                      And yes, you’ve been called lots of things. Usually as the conclusion to an argument. (eg: pete is telling lies, people who tell lies are shitbergs, therefore “Pete is a shitberg”)

                      If you tell a lie, or smear someone, or blather on like a fool, then pointing that out is just stating what you are doing. If you can dispute it, then that’s all to the good. But usually you can’t.

                      You claim that ‘watermelon’ is tame. I disagree, I think it is far worse than calling Peter Dunne a syphilitic old cocknozzle for example. But that’s because I have a love for language, and a respect for its power.

                      I suspect you are the sort of person who would say that somethung is ‘just semantics’, where I think that semantics are very important. It is in the semantics, that precision, and thus truth, resides.

                      Do you care for truth Pete?

                      Do you think bloggers and commenters should have a care for truth?

                      You say you do, at length; and yet, and yet.


                      What a nsaty vicious little smear that is. So full of lies, and accusations of lies. So hidden and cowardly too. I’d be ashamed. If I have something to say, I’ll say it, clearly, and if asked I’ll explain myself.

                      that’s what I consider honesty Pete.

                      Your version seems to be something more polite, but less, well, shall we say, unvile.

                    • It’s hard to believe that’s a genuine overreaction.

                      There’s nothing “hidden and cowardly” about it. It’s a fairly commonly used term for green parties, here and overseas (in Australia anyway). It’s been out in the open for years.

                      A website in New Zealand, The Watermelon, uses the term as a compliment, stating that it is “green on the outside and liberal on the inside”, using the term ‘liberal’ while also citing “socialist political leanings”, reflecting the use of the term ‘liberal’ to describe the left-wing in many English-speaking countries

                      How vile and nasty are they?

                      To claim that it’s “So full of lies, and accusations of lies” I assume you are trying to say Green policies and aims are not socialist at all. Is that what you mean?

                      Greens do have genuine green (environmental) policies – in fact UF have some of the same or similar polices, as do other parties. Even National.

                      I presume we can agree on the greenness of the Greens.

                      So are you disgreeing totally with the pinkness?

                      Do you think Labour red is vile and nasty?

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      There you go again Pete, accusing me of being dishonest about this. Why not just ask why I find it offensive and I’ll tell you. And then you won’t have to go trwaling the internet trying to justify why you think it might not be offensive.

                      Saying they are green on the outside and red in the middle is saying that the Greens ‘greenness’ is a fake, a distraction that’s hiding the true essence of ‘redness’ within. It’s saying they are not really green at all, that they are really red, and lying about it. that the claim of greenness is a trick that you shouldn’t be fooled by.

                      It’s the same as when people call some Maori “bounty bars” – Brown on the outside but white in the middle. They are saying that the person is not really Maori. That’s not saying there is anything wrong with being white, by the way, but it’s still offensive.

                      ‘Watermelons’ is a line with a long history. The idea is that the greens are a commun1st front, if not outright traitors. You’ve been hanging around at KB long enough that you should know well enough what the word is saying, and what those those say it, mean by it.

                      If you knew anything at all about green politics you’d know that it is holistic. The economic policies are not seperate from the rest of it. They are there because the economics needs to be cognizant of the environment. That resources need to be shared more equitably, stems from the fact that if they are not, it means more extraction from the environemt. It’s environmentally wastefull to have vast dichotomies of wealth and to ahve people competeing to consume as much as they can, while others barely scrape by.

                      You might not agree with that, but that’s no excuse to misrepresent it.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      I tracked down that quote Pete cited, no surprises why he didn’t link.

                      It’s from a description of eco-socialism, (ie, people who are not Greens, and arose partiallly in reaction to the Green movement), here’s the text preceding what Pete quoted:

                      Eco-socialists are critical of many past and existing forms of both Green politics and socialism. They are often described as Red Greens – adherents to Green politics with clear anti-capitalist views, often inspired by Marxism (Red Greens should be contrasted with Blue Greens).

                      The term Watermelon is commonly applied, often as an insult, to describe professed Greens who seem to put “social justice” goals above ecological ones, implying they are “green on the outside but red on the inside”; the term is usually attributed to either Petr Beckmann or, more frequently, Warren T. Brookes,[2][3][4] both critics of environmentalism, and is apparently common in Australia,[5][6] New Zealand[7] and the United States[8]


            • Jackal

              So you don’t think teachers should inform students about what the current government is doing? In this case their budget cuts were going to close some cooking and technology classes, which would have a direct impact on young people’s lives.

              What would you suggest, just closing the classes and not telling the students why they had been closed? Perhaps you don’t think young people have a right to know about politics at all. Typical rightwinger… trying to manipulate information to keep people in the dark.

              “We don’t want people to make informed decisions,” is such a defunct and weak pedestal.

              • You’re making false assumptions/accusations again.

                I think kids should learn about current issues and politics at school. But they should be helped to consider all sides of arguments and balance the pros and cons, and not be used to promote a teacher’s opinion or position on an issue.

                And they should be taught that it’s ok to disagree, it’s normal to have different opinions, but that it’s not ok to hate people they simply disagree with.

                Would you be happy for teachers to school kids on promoting neoliberalism?

                • Pascal's bookie

                  On what basis do you assume the teachers didn’t explain the policy?

                  And what was the policy anyway?

                  Even farrar says that the trade off side (the increased techer quality side) was completely undeveloped. And furtheer to that, how is it that in cancelling a trade off we are left with a budget hole. It’s clear as ady that the trade off was spin. A myth. Snake oil.

                  So what exactly were the teachers supposed to do? Make it up? Present obvious government spin? Or talk about the actually stated policy, the one that damn near everyone formed the same opinion on.

            • Murray Olsen

              The sooner children learn that politicians are beneath contempt and totally untrustworthy, the better.

    • Pete don’t be an idiot. You do not know what the truth is yet you call Mallard and Little liars.  Rather dangerous Doncha think?

      • Pete George 2.2.1

        Micky, don’t be an idiot. I haven’t called them liars.

        Do you think they would take your advice and try defamation on me? You should learn some law.

        • Jackal

          You’ve implied that they’re “casual liars,” and have now resorted to outright trolling. Looks like you’re doing a pretty good job of defaming yourself there PG.

        • mickysavage

          Pete you did everything but.

          You quoted Franks talking about Mallard and Little and apparently agree with the comment about them “scoffing at defamation law”. You then mention “casual liars”. You then make the quote “There does need to be a way of addressing deliberate and repeat lying for political gain.”

          So you do everything but call them liars.

          And then in that annoying way of yours you then twist and turn and say “no I didn’t, I was only posing an issue” or “I was only asking a question”.

          And there is this whole theme to your comment about remedies against dishonest politicians and you mention it in relation to the Collins case.

          You are so transparent Petey you should think about getting some curtains.

          • Pete George

            And you are so bad at comprehending. Franks said:

            If they were false I do not know whether they were calculated, reckless or just careless. That will be for a court to determine…

            That’s quite clearly non judgemental on the case.

            He then separately talked in general about the principles of defamation and casual lying.

            If that’s not clear enough I suggest you read Franks’ full post. He’s a lawyer so he should have a good understanding of things like that.

            • mickysavage

              You left out the last bit of Franks’ comment, “[b]ut I do know they are scoffing at defamation law.”

              So you did not want to draw any link whatsoever from mentioning Mallard and Little, and talking about “casual liars” and saying there is a problem about political defamation that has to be dealt with.

              Your pants are on fire Petey.

              • Read Frank’s whole post and try to comprehend it.

                It’s a bit hypocrititical to (falsely) accuse me of calling Mallard and Little liars and say accusations of that sort are “dangerous”, and then imply that I’m a liar. Doncha think?

                • Read it and comprehended it.

                  You are doing your usual blow really hard on the dog whistle and then say innocently “what me” trick?  You are so predictable Petey.

        • Anne

          Micky, don’t be an idiot. I haven’t called them liars.

          You have been inferring, implying, suggesting for weeks now that Mallard and Little are lying.
          Both of them originally commented independently of one another, and had no idea what the other was saying. Both of them had come to the same conclusion because it was the correct conclusion. Many thousands of ‘intelligent’ people came to the same conclusion too.

          You are the idiot who is out of step with reality. Go back to Kiwiblog where fairy tales are still common fare.

          • Pete George

            and had no idea what the other was saying.

            How do you know that?

            Both of them had come to the same conclusion because it was the correct conclusion.

            That is yet to be determined, one way or the other.

            You have been inferring, implying, suggesting for weeks now that Mallard and Little are lying.

            No, I have been inferring, implying, suggesting that they should substantiate their claims, which they have not done yet as far as I’m aware.

            Many thousands of ‘intelligent’ people came to the same conclusion too.

            Based on what evidence?

  3. Salsy 3

    So I’ve finally had a chance to watch the backbenchers show that caused Bomber to allegedly “dream in colour” again.. Yes, Shearer is fantastic – forget media training, just give him a couple of pints before speaking – witty, confident, but warm and approachable. Impressive! If anything, it’s worth watching Nikki Kaye getting walloped (by both the panel and the crowd) and the consolidation of the left block in a stunning united front..

    • Funny seeing different opinions on the same thing.

      While she struggled a bit I thought Nikki Kaye stood up well amongst a stack of opposition.

      And Shearer disappointed me, he came across as impolite and overbearing, too full of himself with insufficient substance.

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        PG – the standard bearer for judging polly character off the small screen.

        • Pascal's bookie

          I mean. Peter Dunne right. There’s a humble man of substance.

          • Jackal

            Yesterday, Peter Dunne claimed that the two weeks it took Hekia Parata to change her mind re teacher student ratios was “quick.” WTF!

      • mickysavage 3.1.2

        But Pete you think the coiffured one is principled and competent …

      • Jackal 3.1.3

        Insufficient substance? I thought Shearer spoke well and his historical knowledge of a tram system in Australia was exceptional. If that’s not substance, I don’t know what is.

        By overbearing you mean when he rebuffed some disinformation about what political party could take credit for infrastructure developments?

        Clearly Nikki Kaye was completely unable to promote National’s propaganda in a proper debate setting. She claimed to catch the bus more than any other debater, but didn’t know how much it costs and Russel Norman catches the bus nearly every day. Kaye was an utter failure!

        You’re comment is based in politicking instead of reality Pete George… But what else is new?

        • Olwyn

          It is hardly evidence of substance to know about the history of the Melbourne trams, it is the kind of thing you are proud of knowing on a quiz night. I did think Shearer came across well, but I will not be convinced by him unless or until I see some unambiguous centre-left positioning. He did not get me dreaming in colour. He was on pretty safe ground at Backbenchers, with a supportive crowd and non-controversial, widely popular claims to defend. I thought Winston was the star of the show – he knows the city and he knows where he stands. And that Norman was the one who had done his homework. That man must hardly sleep these days; he is always armed with evidence of having done his homework.

      • felix 3.1.4

        Yes, she remained standing. And Peters continued to breathe.

        Since you’re all about the substance, you should try watching again with the sound on. When Darling Nikki talks, make a note of the substance of what she says.

        Report back if you find anything at all.

        • muzza

          Clearly Nikki Kaye is being coached, she says NOTHING at all when she answers, its just party lines, pre reheared and spewed back out as needed…

          Have a look at her eyes, they seem dead, just like the party leaders, and others who have been through the rinse!

          • Anne

            She was at her most amusing when she copied the Key line in the Ch.Ch. Press campaign debate. She turned to Shearer and in a shrill voice repeatedly demanded “where’s the money?” . The problem was, she hadn’t listened to what Shearer had just been talking about which was… where the money was coming from.

            • Carol

              Yay! And finally someone did not let Kaye get away with saying, yet again, that Labour had done nothing for Auckland transport, while National had done far more.

              She’s been saying that on Bomber’s shows and getting away with it. Shearer put her in her place saying that the double tracking of the western line etc was begun under Labour’s watch. And Kaye had the gall to say that was not true!

              Fortunately Penny Hulse, ex-deputy mayor of Waitakere City also was there, and commented about history being re-written. I witnessed with my own eyes all the development of the New Lynn rail trench, the double tracking etc, done under Labour, supported strongly by David Cunliffe and Waitakere City.

              And when Kaye is losing she starts trying her simpering little girl flirty kind of behaviour…. geez, woman….. you’re an MP!

        • mike e

          Felix the only substance you’ll find is saliva

      • muzza 3.1.5

        Pete you do realise that Nikki Kaye is simply the next generation of National female stooge, punchbag eh?

        NK is also recently back from a recent brainwashing “scholarship” to the USA – I posted links on it a few weeks back.

        A question to her would be, and I have asked it but as yet no response, ” Are you a member of Parliamtarians for Global Order?”

        I also asked Jacinda A, and no response as yet…

        Darien Fenton confirmed she is, Shearer unclear, Cunliffe is a member, and the list goes on!

        PG – Do you know if Dunne is a member?

      • North 3.1.6

        There you go again Pete George……….disingenuous as hell – “And Shearer disappointed me……..”.

        Bullshit – you found negatives and you’e delighted to tell us about it. Disappointment nothing.

        Who do you think you are anyway ? As a helpless Key apologist with notions of impeccability, perpetually delivered in your gutless passively aggressive way, you need not talk down at others about their conduct.

        • Pete George

          I’ve shown more support for Shearer than most on this blog (a lot more than certain Labour party officials). That’s why I was disappointed with how he performed on Back Benches, I hope for better of him. But don’t let facts get in the way of your making up bull.

          I’m actively involved in two campaigns against Key policy positions, and am openly supporting Labour’s (and in one case specifically Shearer’s) positions on them.

      • bad12 3.1.7

        Fancy that, Labour leader David Shearer disappointing the likes of you, that from my point of view would tend to suggest that He is doing stuff which is likely to impress both the Labour faithful and those who have departed the Labour fold,

        The look Shearer gave National’s Nikki Kaye throughout this weeks BackBenchers was brilliant, to me a look that said to Kaye that She was nothing but mere amoeba, some form of primitive bottom feeding low life more in tune with feeding from a septic pond of sludge than the real world occupied by the human race,

        Kaye felt every bit of such a withering display from Shearer and if anyone cares to re-view the BackBenchers episode you can see it in the body language of Kaye as she leans on Winston Peters in an effort to get as far away from the Leader of the Opposition as possible,

        Having not really been a Shearer fan I would say that IF He continues in the vein He showed on that Backbenchers this week any television debate with the Leader of National in the future will likely have the end result of showing Slippery up as the empty suitcase of intellect that He actually is,

        Its a pity that through either disdain at entering the ‘real’ day to day nations political discourse, or fear, National chose not to have someone from higher up the Government food chain enter that particular BackBenchers debate,

        The hope here is that if the demise of TV7 is to occur then television NZ make room for BackBenchers in a prime spot on TV1 during a weekday night instead of consigning it to the dustbin or some sunday morning spot so as to further the attempt to disengage as much of the mass of the population from the political process as possible…

        • Carol


          And Shearer was very skillful in not letting Kaye get away with the standard Nat MP strategy of stating their spin loudly and talking over anyone who tries to rebut it. Shearer smoothly and calmly talked back over her and silenced her, showing her spin for what it was.

          I’ve seen Kaye use that bullying tactic too often on Bomber’s shows. It was really satisfying to see her finally put in her place.

          Norman and Peters did their bits too. Norman did it without talking over Kaye, but, when he got a moment he calmly rebutted her shonkey arguments and non-existing supporting evidence.

  4. prism 4

    PIPI – Politicians Introducing Policy Inimical to NZ No.1

    Phil Heatley
    Mining exploration licences that demand deep sea drilling

  5. Sookie 5

    I will pay $$$ to someone who designs a Pete George blocking programme like the one Firefox has for advertisements so I don’t have to scroll past his utterly banal wafflings every time I visit this site. It’s alright to ban someone for being a boring old git, you know, Dim Post guy did it 🙂

    • Will you pay me $$$ if I tell you how you can do it? It’s already available.

      • Jackal 5.1.1

        Maybe Pete George should be restricted to comment in proportion to his parties current support… which is 0.60% in the general election. That would equate to PG being allowed to comment once in every 169 comments. Yippee!

      • Colonial Viper 5.1.2

        Will you pay me $$$ if I tell you how you can do it? It’s already available.

        Pete George finally admits that he will stay silent on his political views if someone pays him enough money to do so.

    • Molly Polly 5.2

      Please, please, please!!! I worry that as I scroll by PG’s comments of banality that I may miss something really important.

      It was a pleasure to read the Standard when he was banned, but at the back of my mind I kept thinking – when will he return? Like a reoccurring scratch…hoping like hell it won’t come back. And then one day it/he did…and I’m back itching to scream.

    • DH 5.3

      I’ll add a me too. I have no interest in reading any of his threads or posts, they’re too Pavlov & his dogs for me. It would be great if we could collapse threads we want to skip, I’m a reader more than a writer and I just find the guy spoiling much of the (potential) enjoyment of this site.

      [lprent: it is on the list of work to do already. Hard bit is hooking up something to a cookie to remember what is collapsed for each user. ]

  6. chris73 7

    Serco incompetence should put a halt to Wiri
    By: James Henderson – Date published: 9:00 am, June 7th, 2012

    Does Serco run Waikeria Prison?

  7. Jackal 9

    Government doesn’t care about child poverty

    We all know that poverty and especially childhood poverty is a terrible thing. Nobody can really argue with the moral case for reducing poverty, but there’s also a good economical argument for reducing childhood poverty as well…

  8. Vicky32 10

    watermelons” What a nsaty vicious little smear that is.

    No, it’s not – for goodness sake, it’s inaccurate, but nasty and vicious? Greens get over yourselves!
    I wouldn’t mind if they were watermelons, but they’re much worse. GReen on the outside, pretending to a slight shade of pink under the rind, hiding the deep blue and the ACT yellow that’s really just below the surface… 
    Like the Environment Group at Auckland Uni in the 80s – comprising 100% middle and upper class kiddies, with the born to rule mentality that goes with it, and the disdain for the lower classes – unless those lower people are a nice shade of brown, in which case, patronise away!

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