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Open mike 09/08/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 9th, 2013 - 146 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…

146 comments on “Open mike 09/08/2013 ”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    Thirty million dollars to guarantee 3000 jobs, a third of them high paying, for three years? Only a fool, or someone blinded by the childish religion of free market ideology, would see that as a bad out come.

    So step right up John Roughan (and it is John, you can pick up the stink of his writing style a mile off) in the NZ Herald’s editorial this morning.

    Hell, if we could build an aircraft factory that provided 3000 jobs in Hawkes Bay and an ship building industry in Northland that provided 3000 jobs and 3000 more jobs in railway workshops in Wellington and Dunedin for another ninety million over three years I’d say go for it. Forty million a year in the midst of a downturn to keep 12,000 jobs ticking along? A bargain! That fact that it took the political imperative of a flagship government policy of blind adherence to market doctrine to show some common sense is so mind bogglingly ironic you don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

    And the way in which the decision to offer the $30,000,000 has been promptly attacked by every right wing commentator in the country, is neat evidence of the sterile thinking and lack of imagination that dominates our economic debate or, as it was neatly put by the Chinese the other day, how “…hostage to a blinkered devotion to laissez-faire market ideology…” that debate is.

    • richard 1.1

      To quote from the editorial:

      Additionally, there is the Government’s $30 million, which it says is the price that had to be paid to provide “greater certainty” for the smelter workers, the Southland region and the electricity industry. In each case, it does nothing of the sort. New Zealand Aluminium Smelters will be able to terminate the contract from January 2017 provided it gives 15 months’ notice. In effect, the earliest closure date for the smelter has been moved back just one year. It would have taken a longer-term deal to offer anything approaching greater job security for its workers.

      So in effect the 30million is for a guaranteed 12 months work for the approxiamately 800 staff at the plant.

      • left of right 1.1.1

        The start of a closure package for the smelter possibly with this govt bias to doing what the money masters overseas decree .How much more will it cost ?

  2. framu 2

    well that didnt take long

    Rio tinto rumored to fast track tiwai point sale.

    Add in the rumored job restructuring, and that in interviews, govt ministers arent moving the discussion away from the meridian share float and i think we can safely call this for what it is

    • richard 2.1

      I wonder if they actually can sell it.

      It has announced it will hold onto its struggling aluminium business, Pacific Aluminium, which it has been trying to sell.

      Mr Walsh said the company had been unable to sell the business.

      “Following a comprehensive review we have also determined that the divestment of Pacific Aluminium for value is not possible in the current environment and it will be reintegrated into the Rio Tinto Alcan group.”

      Despite crying poor, Rio Tinto’s profit for the six months to the end of June was $US1.7 billion dollars.

      Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-08-08/rio-tinto-profit-result/4874382

    • aerobubble 3.1

      Everything. Never be a debtor be, as one cut, one chance encounter, and you become a zombie too.

  3. BM 4

    What the 30 million dollars has brought is 4 years for the Southland economy and the smelter workers to transition away from the smelter and into other areas.
    Every one knows the smelter’s going, but now people can see a time line and plan for it’s closure.

    That’s what the 30 million dollars is all about and really it’s a very small price to pay .

    • framu 4.1

      then that would be the official line – but its not

      • BM 4.1.1

        It’s more the unofficial line.
        No one is going to come out and say the smelter will close in exactly 4 years time, that would just cause a lot of short term pain for no reason at all.

        What they’re doing is giving Southland time to develop other areas before they announce the closure.

        Sudden change is not good for people and especially politicians.

        • framu

          your ignoring all evidence and focusing on how it sounds inside your head.

          Its no big secret that the smelter will close and close soon – this deal only pushes the first possible closure date out by about a year

          very little of the commentary is about helping southland

          quite a bit of the commentary is about providing stability to the market for the upcoming share float

          we now hear rumors that the workforce is being massively restructured

          and the plant is likely to be sold and sold soon

          as a said – if it was really about helping southland, shit, if it was even about pretending to help southland to distract from the share float, then that is what we would be hearing from ministers via the media

          we arent

          • muzza

            What is agenda 21’s primary aim again – Oh yes, that’s right, it’s about driving people from the rural areas, and herding them into larger cities!

            Take a look around small town NZ, both main islands, and see it in action on a daily basis!

          • marty mars

            Yes framu I agree with you – very little about this is related to jobs or Southland – the share float is the real issue for them. Rio Tinto will pull out as soon as they want to, they have the weight to basically choose what is best for them and I don’t imagine they’ll give Southlanders too much consideration in that.

            edit @risi- yes 4 billion US

        • risildowgtn

          You missed the 4 BILLION $ profit margin they made clown

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      What the 30 million dollars has brought is 4 years for the Southland economy and the smelter workers to transition away from the smelter and into other areas.

      No it hasn’t. That would have occurred if Rio Tinto said that they would be closing the smelter down over the next four years.

      Every one knows the smelter’s going, but now people can see a time line and plan for it’s closure.

      No they can’t as the smelter has been “saved” by taxpayer money for another year. Southland will probably expect another handout in 2017.

      That’s what the 30 million dollars is all about and really it’s a very small price to pay .

      No, it was just a waste of money made so as to boost Rio Tinto’s profits.

  4. AsleepWhileWalking 5

    Hey hey fellow lefties,

    This site has just been launched to encourage people to have their will done and create a “bucket list” to maximise their remaining time in their current body.


    Looks good. I thought it might be like the Public Trust who, in exchange for assisting you in writing a free will have themselves appointed executor and thus are able to extract large amounts of money in “expenses”. But this site doesn’t do that so I’m looking into it.

    Two charities who will benefit from both my life and any dying I do will be Wellington Rape Crisis and the Beneficiary Education and Advisory Service as they both embody my moral and political values (although neither is actually a political organisation). I also know people in both organisations so feel confident any donation will be used with integrity and the upliftment of the wider community.

    • karol 5.1

      I’m interested. But writing up the Will on their site is not free: costs $50.00

      To create a will using our simple will creation tool, it costs only $NZ49.95. You then own the Will you create, and can be rest assured your family is protected. Live the day!

      What you get:

      Access to our easy 6 step Will creation tool
      A PDF version of your Will for you to Print, Sign and have Witnessed.
      Download your Will whenever you need to
      Instruction sheet explaining what the clauses in your Will mean
      Information explaining how to validate your Will

      PS: Courtesy of Mai Chen.

    • Veutoviper 5.2

      Comsumer NZ have a guide to making wills which seems to be available free online without needing to subscribe. Basic, but a good starting point.

      I note that it was updated in August 2012, after Public Trust discontinued its freely available service (they still do some in very restricted circumstances.)


      • Tim 5.2.1

        Wills are frought! Is that the word?

        The first (using the Public Trsutee I wanted to leave half a lifetime’s earnings and expertise to a first son and family. WHAT a fucking hassle!

        Still – I’m living out that will to this day: whereby my attempts to give a lifetime to date was to son, his wife and gradnson with I hoped was his due before I actually karked it. (i.e. so I could actually be assured that they would not have to encounter the struggle of student debt, neo-liberal inspired ugliness of greed and selfishness, and witness it whilst still alive)

        The second (firstly by way of Ugly Trust, then money making solicitor – now I understand the true meaning of the term), my daughter and second born – to be left by former partner – wife and subsequent.

        WHAT a complicated messs of bullshit and kakabeans.

        It seems that when wants to live frugally, to live in minimalist lifestyle, to hand on one’s wealth to the next generation (ESPESCIALLY having witnessed most of my contemporaries having left a load of death, desperation and baby boomer debt and aspiration – with a lik and a promise), one can’t easily.
        Instead, one has to hope that what a first child is given by me – hoping to give a start, is replicated by an estranged wife to the second. Thankfully it now has and will be.

        I/we both (i.e. myself and an ex) CANNOT easily be leave the next generation an entitlement to the wealth of our lifetimes UNTIL we ekshly kik the proverbial. Far easier a foreigner or alien to come hither, lay claim to some form of ‘property’ at the expense of fellow nationals, jet in once a year (or less even), and leave their legacy.

        Oh well – the best we can hope for is that the assholes won’t come near to any overflow from my wealth – until …. well let’s just say hopefully death is quick and easy, and if not , down to an undetected BIG BIG OD, whereby a first born gets mine, and the second gets my ex, AND any overflow benefits a local community (and anonymously, and those I hold dear).
        But truely – easier said than done!

        It’s a hard life being a once high earner, latterly and suddenly reduced to SFA when one identifies with the left rather than the right.

        Things really are designed for the bullshit artists and the Jellybeans – the Keysters, the charletans, the aspirational rent seeker, contribute-nothing/collect-all Phil Steins.

        They’re designed for the Keys, the En-tree-pren-ooooo-ers, the “Oim-so-great” money fuckers, rentiers and traders in misery and debt (seems I can’t easily just leave wealth anonymously for example)
        …… still, that figures looking at a Natzi front bench with dishonestly earned wealth.

        Best thing is it’s an incentive to stay alive!

        Even better thing is that in the overall scheme of things, they won’t come out tops.
        Never mind though – might have to be a grandson/daughter that pisses on graves rather than me

        • karol

          Yes, I’ve been thinking dying is too much hassle. Actually, the Mai Chen Will, for $50.00 looks like it will suit my needs – don’t have a spouse or children, but need to ensure I leave enough for my rels to pay my funeral and other death expenses.

          Without a Will, I’m told it can take for ever for the rels to get the money to pay for me having been so inconsiderate as to die.

  5. Raa 6

    The blond hair has thinned and receded, the face, beaten by 60 years of the Queensland sun, is lined. But the toothy grin is still there.

    Why, said Peter Beattie, this was the political battle of his life. It would take a 1.6 per cent swing to deliver the seat of Forde to his grasp. ”I am the underdog,” he insisted, keeping a straight face.

    Ah, yes, but had he done any deals with Prime Minister Kevin Rudd for a frontbench seat, should he step over that 1.6 per cent barrier and get to Canberra … and did he have ambitions of replacing Mr Rudd as leader, he was asked? ”I’m happy to be a backbencher,” said the former nine-year premier of Queensland.



  6. Retired Engineer 7

    Key has no problem with using his mate Fletcher and others in the Police/Intelligence community to protect and extend his grip on power. Eagleton and his office can command theses forces at will.
    Has Key used theses agencies to spy on Labour and the media?
    Has Shearer been kept in his leader position (unwittingly) by theses manipulating pricks?

    • fender 7.1

      “Has Key used theses agencies to spy on Labour and the media?”

      When (because of his track record with the truth) you can’t trust your PM a suggestion like this can’t be laughed at. Could even explain the Lab. “caucus leaks”.

      • Boadicea 7.1.1

        What would Robertson do if he was offered ill gotten info and/or assistance by conduits of theses players?
        Would Robertson find the opportunity to secure his succession to Shearer too tempting?

        Some say Robertson us the ultimate Machiavellian!

  7. Adrian 8

    Who knows, but it would be nice to know if there were any emails or telrphone messages between members of the Meridian board and Keys office?

    • tc 8.1

      Adrian, look at the names of the board and bear in mind the links between board and hollowmen is likely golf/dinners/bbq’s etc all nice and social with no electronic records.

  8. muzza 9


    Though he was killed four years ago, Troy Kastigar of Minnesota remains an articulate recruiter for al-Shabab, al Qaeda’s franchise in Somalia that has been part of a long-running Islamic insurgency against the internationally backed but very weak central government in the capital, Mogadishu.

    IntelCenter, a private firm that tracks extremist media, provided produced the video and an accompanying analysis to for The Washington Times.

    From the we control the production line of terrorists home made videos……

  9. xtasy 10

    Learn what is behind the drive by the government, by the Ministry of Social Development and Work and Income, to usher or push sick and disabled beneficiaries into open employment on the already competitive job market:

    “Medical and Work Capability Assessments – Based on the controversial bio psycho-social model, aimed at disentitleing affected from welfare benefits and accident compensation: The Aylward Unum Link”:

    ‘An article summarising comprehensive, revealing research results’


    As we know by now, WINZ are contracting out services to private, non-government operators, who will be paid handsome fees to place people with mental and other illlnesses, with disabilities, and also sole parents into jobs. The fact that such fees are paid on performance will in itself lead to the affected persons being pressured to take on jobs they get offered. Whether they may like such probably just casual, part time, unfulfilling, undemanding and low paid jobs or not, and whether they may cope or not, the expectation will be put onto them, so most will give in and accept being pushed into whatever jobs. It will be a risky experiment, likely to cause harm to at least some, and it will certainly not solve much, as most employers will only take on sick and disabled for the attractive fees they may also get. Once that subsidy is taken and pocketed, the incentive to keep the sick and disabled workers on will vanish.

    There are some key players involved, and of course, the whole ideas stem from persons like a Professor Mansel Aylward from a department at Cardiff University, who also did nicely out of payments by controversial private disability insurer Unum Insurance from the US, who sponsored his work.


    Key persons that promote his ideas in New Zealand include a Dr David Beaumont, who “advised” both ACC and MSD on policies, and he happens to run his own business called “Pathways To Work”, down on the South Island, earning from the government to place disabled and incapacitated into work.



    The New Zealand government and Social Welfare Minister Paula Bennett have fallen for the disputed and perverted “bio psycho-social model” approach by Aylward and his colleagues (e.g. Gordon Waddel), and as it offers them an opportunity to rid WINZ off long term beneficiaries with health and disability issues, they just love the idea to outsource and have private agencies do the difficult jobs for them, similar to what has been going on in the UK for some years now.

    Shame on Paula Bennett and her consorts!

    • richard 10.1

      It’s shameful that the neo-liberals are still blindly adopting failed experiments from other countries.

      A quick search on The Guardian site reveals a long list of documented problems with the English scheme. And now it is going to be foist on NZ


  10. captain hook 11

    I am getting a bit fed up with kweewee. Every time you turn round he is off complaining to the cops to get him out of hot water.
    he is like the school yard creep who has found a way of keeping the troops in line but it all turns to crap when it is exposed to reality.
    what a crybaby.

  11. richard 12

    Cosgrove slays English on Nine to Noon:
    Government deal on Tiwai Point aluminium smelter

    The clip is quite long because a fair proportion of it is English saying “umm, ahh, umm”

    • Veutoviper 12.1

      I am not a great Cosgrove fan, but that was a good interview by him, particularly his critique of English’s spin.

      Loved Cosgrove’s comment at the end that English “could not run the bathwater, never mind a business …”

  12. Winston Smith 13


    This may be of interest to some, the teachers union write to an aspiring charter school operator and his response.

    Now about the clip telling Shearer…at first glance I thought it was done by someone from the right because the production values look quite high whereas something from the left would look cheap

    However if you’re clued up enough to produce this then you’d know that Shearer is who the right want as leader so, on the balance of probabilities, I’d say its someone from the left

    Whoever it is they did a good job

    • felix 13.1

      What clip is that?

      • xtasy 13.1.1

        Maybe it is this one, that was published on TDB not long ago?

        That is, unless there is a newer one out by now.

        In any case, the pressure on Shearer is not getting less.

    • fender 13.2

      Sorry but I won’t be going to that shit-hole theatre to see any clip, can you do an honest review?

      • xtasy 13.2.1

        This is the version that right wing fan Sean “Plonkit” has been raving on about on his Radio Live show this morning. It appears to be the same clip that ‘The Daily Blog’ already published a week or so ago. It shows how slow mainstream media is these days, to catch on with what is happening.


        It appears to have been loaded onto YouTube on 24 July already.

      • Winston Smith 13.2.2

        You’re not interested in the charter school debate then?

        • BM

          Debate starts.

          Charter schools are bad and evil.

          Debate ends.

        • Draco T Bastard

          We’ve had the debate – reality shows us that they’re a waste of time and money. Which brings us to the conclusion that National are destroying our education system for a reason.

          • Winston Smith

            Well no you’re wrong charter schools are not a waste of time or money, the reality is that the teachers unions (not the teachers) are trying to protect their racket

            • richard

              Wrong, every count.

              Here’s what charter schools are about:

              Read some of those articles and learn how they work in practice. Once you done some reading, you might be ready for a debate.

              • Winston Smith

                I can’t be arsed adding links where charter schools are shown to be good (to close to knock off time)

                • McFlock

                  can’t be arsed spouting tory propaganda unless you’re on the clock, eh? Don’t blame you.

            • Draco T Bastard

              BS, the teachers and the teacher union (can’t have the latter without the former) are trying to protect our children from the destructive systems that NACT are putting in place.

              • Winston Smith

                Bollix the union is there to protect its members…teachers. Once you give parents choice you break the monopoly and thats what the union is scared of

                • felix

                  Yeah, teachers don’t give a crap about children. Duh.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Bollix the union is there to protect its members…teachers. Once you give parents choice you break the monopoly and thats what the union is scared of

                  Actually, the union is there to provide organised resistance to privatising and corporate forces.

                  “Protecting its members” is just a single aspect of that, because privatising and corporate forces benefit from attacking teachers, their families (and workers in general).

                  A lot of parents want the choice of a largely public education system – anyone who wants a private system can always choose to pay for it. Entirely. Without tax payer subsidies. By themselves.

                  • Draco T Bastard


                    Well said. And if the government stopped subsidising the private schools in the country most would close.

            • Murray Olsen

              What racket? The one where they work long hours, contribute to extracurricular activities without pay, deal with disruptive kids, endure idiot Tory parents who know everything, cop shit from all sides, and all for ridiculously low pay? Funny sort of racket. Nothing like the rackets enjoyed by PERFed out coppers who get contracts to drug test beneficiaries and sit on their asses raking it in, for example.

              If teaching was as much a racket as these idiot Tories claim, they’d all be lining up to do it. Why aren’t they?

              • Rosetinted

                I was just talking to a long-term teacher about how she has advocated for a part-time teacher aide which she has never been granted before.

                She has a number of behavioural problems with ADHD etc and one boy who has never been managed by the other teachers so she was asked to take him on and has broken through and gained his interest and the ability to control his erratic behaviour.

                She used her methods of being firm, setting standards of behaviour and insisting on them, giving direction and not standing over the negative one, and taking the recalcitrant ones through their behaviour faults so they understand what the problem is, and she is ready to encourage and praise and facilitate them. All this takes time, experience, fortitude, positive thinking, planning, intelligence, teacher learning and understanding etc.

                And also you may not be well supported by your school management system even when you are successful and know you are a good teacher by the good results you have. And there is so much superior ignorant bullshit coming from either parents who don’t manage their own role well, or superior upper class types who want their moneys-worth of education and more, and the pollies sneer when they want to deflect attention from their own failures. And yet the teachers keep on because they are dedicated and they keep winning, eventually, and the class achieves and they know they have Done Good. It surely is not easy.

  13. Rosetinted 14

    I was looking at some National Party people today and thinking about ones I know.
    What would be a profile of them compared to the profile for Labour. These perceptions of themselves then drive the perceptions they have of the other party/ies.

    National to me seem to be the sort who dye their hair (women) because its part of conforming to the stereotype of a well-dressed and presented woman, women would 99.5% wear makeup, dress fashionably. Men suits, smart casual, good cars. They see themselves as go-getters, no-nonsense, hard workers getting on with life, aiming to earn good money and spend it on attractive objects and items. Individualistic. Superior. Not highly principled.Vaguely concerned about international connections but mainly as to where they can gain most advantage. Not much principle. Snobbish, I’m better than you and them (the benes), feeling deserving so when they become benes in some way that’s different and fair to them as more useful citizens than other benes.

    Labour is regarded by them as incompetent and full of wish lists and supporters are regarded by them as not highly principled, unlike National Partyites, well most of the time. Labour is for either the lower classes or for academics or professionals who have a serious lack of reality and judgment and want things for the country only available in lala land. The reasons behind most people voting for Labour is because they haven’t got the gumption to go for a party that is leading a group who ‘are going places’.

    The National-drawn people are unable to analyse and critically and objectively view the politics we live under and methods. They don’t have a higherstandard that they will work towards, if they do have a vision it is kept for slogans alone, not to be implemented. They are not introverted, or thoughtful, or interested in studying history except to pick on certain events that illustrate that might is right or noting failures of power and control in the past, and noting how to avoid that recurring. In other words anything they learn will be selective and skewed to their future advantage.

    • Anne 14.1

      Nicely put Rosetinted. In short: they’re selfish, self centred and shallow thinkers who don’t care about anyone outside their closed insular circles. They assuage their feelings of guilt by supporting charities and attending charity balls. Their ultimate ambition is to be considered a member of the Beautiful People. (sarc.)

    • jcuknz 14.2

      You certainly are wearing rose-tinted glasses in your perception of both National and Labour voting people.

    • Winston Smith 14.3

      Uh huh…no generalisations there at all

      • felix 14.3.1

        Lolz Winston, it was clearly written specifically as a generalisation.

        th’ fuck are you on about?

        • Winston Smith

          Trying to point out politely (maybe too politely) that this is as big a piece of steaming cow dung as I’ve ever read on here and thats saying something

          Its as accurate as me saying all lefties are pseudo-communist, envious, dole bludging, ne’er do wells

          • felix

            But to criticise a piece clearly intended to be written as a broad generalisation by calling it a generalisation?

            That makes no sense. I might as well criticise your comment by saying it’s been typed into a browser.

          • Rosetinted

            generalising ! Obviously you fit part of the profile – that you can’t coolly analyse.

    • srylands 14.4

      Thanks for that. I thought the first three paras were excellent.

      • Rosetinted 14.4.1

        Who cares whether the paras were excellent. What about the content? Are voters like this or not? Are they driven by these perceptions or not? Why? How come we can’t run the country better than we do? Who is influential the pollies or the voters?

        If you vote in a party because they seem overall to be better but have one really bad policy how does one stand against that mandate whitewash? I am government , therefore I have a mandate.

        What’s the use of making silly patronising comments. If anyone makes silly comments they should be trying to be funny or satirical or something. If not they should go outside and stand on their head and let some blood rush into their brain. That’s how humans recharge themselves, I think I read it in a report from Russia or maybe China. Probably one of them that are on the other side of the world. They probably want to see things from our perspective../sarc

  14. Veutoviper 15

    Ooops, managed to put the following on yesterday’s OM instead of todays.

    This could be interesting at 1pm today

    Dunne Tweet

    “I am doing NBR ASK ME ANYTHING session 1pm today. Leave a question now: nbr.co.nz/ask-peter-dunne”


    • scotty 15.1

      Hes not off to a good start.

      Couldn’t address the first question honestly.

      • Veutoviper 15.1.1

        Agreed. It also looks like it will be a long session at the slow rate the answers are coming up (and not in question order). Still, some good questions from some good people, so Dunne is probably having trouble working out his spin.

        EDIT – or his non-answers such as that to #4 that has just come up! LOL – how thick is he? And now #5 and #9.

  15. jcuknz 16

    I just got a letter from David Shearer … that’s nice … except it was paid for by me which is a long standing bone of contention be it Labour or National or whoever from the beehive. Tells me he will save me hundreds of dollars with my power bill … that is a laugh since the balance of probabilities is that it won’t and might cost me … but whatever these politicians have their funny ideas.

    What really disturbed me was the ‘argument’ quotes from an old lady at a Grey Power meeting who said she was afraid to turn on a light or her electric blanket becuase of the effect on her power bill … shocking … that nobody bothered to explain power consumption and how little such things use …. shocking becuase nobody told her to think about the things which really eat up the power such as heater, water heating, and ovens, about drawing curtains as soon as the sun goes behind the hill and so on ….

    So thankyou David for adding to my belief that Labour are a hopeless bunch.

    • bad12 16.1

      My view is that besides setting up by Legislation a single desk ‘buyer’ of wholesale electricity the Labour/Green electricity reforms should take one more step,

      Labour/Green should also set up a nationwide retailer charged with offering the cheapest price possible to consumers without incurring a financial loss…

      • Draco T Bastard 16.1.1

        They should go the whole hog and renationalise electricity, make it so that it’s supported by taxes and that every household gets a free amount of power – enough to run the basics. Anything above that free amount is charged for.

        • bad12

          Cannot disagree with you about nationalizing the whole ugly little soap opera that the ‘electricity market’ was always going to and has become,

          That seems as easy as it being a matter of ‘will’, how to keep it that way tho i would dare suggest would take a one party state to achieve…

        • srylands

          They should go the whole hog and renationalise beer, make it so that it’s supported by taxes and that every household gets a free amount of beer – enough to run the basics. Anything above that free amount is charged for.

          • Winston Smith

            Depends on the beer, do you want lion red, rheineck etc etc that lefties tend to drink…

            • felix

              You haven’t been allowed out for quite some time, have you?

            • McFlock

              In the people’s republic, everyone will have access to Speights (original recipe), bud.

              • felix

                Will it be compulsory?

              • KJT

                What, the stuff that makes you fancy hoary old shepherds instead of nice young barmaids.


                There is an Aussie sheep joke in there somewhere.

                • felix

                  Roll all the Lion Red, Waikato and Speights brewing into one operation (if it isn’t already) and repackage it as Victory Draught.

                • McFlock

                  That’s the lolly-water brewed by jafas, not the original recipe.

                  On an unrelated note, I can’t abide Export. But when they did that original recipe production run a few years back, I loved the depth of flavour. It’s almost as if going into uniform high-volume mass production somehow lowers the quality of the product…

              • Winston Smith

                Thats a policy I can agree with

            • KJT

              Drink black Mack and chardonnay myself.

              Or a nice vibrant little Merlot.

          • KJT

            Beer, is not essential infrastructure, nor is it an example of market failure.

            It is also not reliant on large scale networks, the capital costs to start a brewery are not huge and you can brew plenty of your own, if the supply fails…

            Cheaper power however. will also mean cheaper beer :-).

            • felix

              Sorry about srylands.

              It assumes everyone is driven by ideology and incapable of considering the merits of a proposal against any other measure.

          • Draco T Bastard

            There’s a couple of differences that you seem incapable of realising:

            1.) There are many types of beer that anyone can make, there is only one type of electricity
            2.) The necessary integrated smart grid to bring about the best possible distribution of power is a natural monopoly. Having more of them just adds unnecessarily to the cost.
            3.) Having the state, and thus the people, owning the generators and running them at cost is much, much cheaper than having private competing firms running them for a profit due to all the added bureaucracy that such competing firms introduce (which is cheaper? 1 CEO for $200k or 5 for $2m each) and the dead weight loss of profit.

            Basically, what it comes down to is that you’re an ideological idiot.

            • felix

              “There are many types of beer that anyone can make, there is only one type of electricity”

              Well, two really 😉 But that’s just splitting electrons

            • srylands

              You are the ideological idiot. You ignore the role of markets. But you dismiss markets. Because you are an idiot.

              That guy Wolak didn’t really work for you did he?

              and you think that the Government running the generators at cost with no market will result in less bureaucracy? You ever worked in Government?

              Oh damn I just remembered – didn’t you tell me the Government should grow and selll food?

              Enough said.

              You deserve to be ridiculed. Fortunately your state control wet dream will never happen.

              • Colonial Viper

                Silly billy, Govt doesn’t have to grow and sell all food, the statutory producer boards did very well thank you, and have created giants like Fonterra.

                You really are a bit ignorant of the socialist reality of NZ, aren’t you?

                and you think that the Government running the generators at cost with no market will result in less bureaucracy?

                I think red meat exporters and Fonterra quality control could have done with a bit MORE bureaucracy in recent times, from what we’ve seen reported, eh?

              • Draco T Bastard

                and you think that the Government running the generators at cost with no market will result in less bureaucracy?

                Yep. Don’t need anywhere as much of it:-

                1.) Don’t need advertising
                2.) Don’t need multiple duplication of managers all doing the same job just for different companies
                3.) Don’t need multiple office space and so freeing buildings for other uses

                The market is supposed to be there so as to determine how much supply is needed. This rather remarkable outcome is determined through statistics and planning which a monopoly will actually be better suited to doing (comes down to their being only one type of electricity only). What competition does in this gathering data and planning is make it so that the information that one company gathers isn’t shared with the other companies which must result in the individual companies making the wrong decisions. We, the consumers, end up paying for those mistakes usually in the form of government handouts and guarantees.

                Competition adds costs for no purpose and the market brings about failure. This is what we see in telecommunications. Twenty years of privatisation has left us with a network far below the standard it should be at and would be at if Telecom hadn’t been sold and the government having to put in extra taxpayer money to bring it up to that standard. The full costs to the public, once dividends are taken into account, are over $17 billion dollars and that’s just telecom – add Telstra, Vodafone, 2 degrees and it goes up even further.

                didn’t you tell me the Government should grow and selll food?

                Yep, just like farmers who own multiple farms do – they go out and hire managers.

      • srylands 16.1.2

        “Labour/Green should also set up a nationwide retailer charged with offering the cheapest price possible to consumers without incurring a financial loss…”

        Yes because around the world Government owned monopolies usually provide such excellent service.

        Maybe the RMs can nationalise the supermarkets too. “NZ Food.” or “Kiwi Eat”

    • Rosetinted 16.2

      It’s a pity that Labour tend to bring up examples such as the one you mentioned as though it is a reflection of most of us. Is the old lady supposed to be representative for their constituents.

      I remember someone from Auckland being quoted on how expensive electricity was. She was spending $300 a month. That was a hell of a lot and could not be given as an example of the average person in difficulty. What could have been said was that people who were finding electricity too dear could have an 0800 number to phone and be given assistance on how power could be saved, through a number of ways. Just making sure that she wasn’t heating the kitchen from turning on the stove might be one.

      Picking on the saddest little story-with-photo to act as a mascot for a policy does not impress. The idea of Labour having no idea of what to do and just responding with a knee-jerk reaction to the poor and needy is not going to galvanise the population who think they know what they’ve got to try somebody who is making up policy as he goes. Of course that is what NACTs are doing really with their focus groups, but perception is everything these days.

  16. bad12 17

    Today’s ‘golden turd award’ for efforts to Jonolism goes to the Heralds economics editor Brian Fallow for this quote,

    ”4.3 billion dollars in profits due to ‘market inefficiencies’ during dry years, the exercise of unilateral market power imposes little cost on consumers when there is plenty of water”, unquote,

    The above quote appears to be the ‘work’ of Professor Frank Wolak and can be found in the Herald article by Fallow in the economics section of the Herald on line,(click on the business section first), the headline for this spurious piece of Jonolism is titled, ”Setting the record straight on power” and it’s contents are about all we can expect from another of the card carrying Fifth Column Herald journalists who cannot bring themselves to address any issue truthfully,

    Putting aside the term ‘market inefficiencies’ as who in their right mind knows what Fallow supposes Wolak means with it’s use it is simple to see the absolute LIE inherent in both the Professor’s words and Fallow’s repetition of them,

    It’s simple, in ‘a market’ if the amount of water available to generate electricity was effected by ‘a dry year’ and this provoked ‘price increases’ then it is obvious to even the most dull that in the years when there is plenty of water there would be ‘price decreases’,

    That of course is how a ‘real’ market is supposed to work, in a market where the consumer is in effect ‘trapped’,(how many of us can live without electricity), price ‘fixing’ will occur, and that is exactly what has occurred in the wholesale and retail of electricity pricing in New Zealand,

    Price fixing occurs when during the dry years the wholesale price of electricity rises and the retail price charged then increases,

    Price fixing becomes apparent when in the wet years the wholesale price either does not drop back to the level of the last wet year, or, the wholesale price of electricity drops for the retailer but the retailer does not pass on that wholesale price decrease to the consumer,

    i would challenge that Jonolist Brian Fallow to create for us a chart of all the wholesalers and all the retailers showing everybody both the wholesale and retail prices of electricity by year and indicating dry and wet years,

    Brian Fallows pathetic excuse of an excuse for the New Zealand electricity market’s Price Fixing over the past decade earns Him a coveted Golden Turd Award…

    • richard 17.1

      Interesting how Wolak’s words have changed. Here’s his first reference to the 4.3 billion:

      By comparing the actual wholesale prices with hypothetical competitive benchmark prices, Professor Wolak estimated that the wholesale prices charged over the period 2001 to mid-2007 resulted in an extra $4.3 billion in earnings to all generators over those that they would have earned under competitive conditions. This suggests that wholesale prices were, on average, 18 per cent higher than they would have been if the wholesale market had been more competitive, and the gentailers had not been able to exert market power. Less competition was especially evident in the wholesale market during the dry years of 2001 and 2003, when additional earnings attributable to the exercise of market power are estimated at $1.5 billion in each of those years.

      So we have an extra $4.3 billion being charged because of monopoly powers and then an extra $1.5 billion charged in each of the dry years.

      Source: http://www.comcom.govt.nz/the-commission/media-centre/media-releases/detail/2009/commercecommissionfindsthatelectri

      • bad12 17.1.1

        Yes Wolak obviously has 2 faces, perhaps He has been reminded by the Government that it is they who ultimately control His pay packet,

        The real, and only question that needs be asked is ”has anyone had their electricity retailer lower the price they charge per kilowatt hour, ever”…

      • Rosetinted 17.1.2

        ”Setting the record straight on power” and it’s contents are about all we can expect from another of the card carrying Fifth Column Herald journalists who cannot bring themselves to address any issue truthfully, (bad12)

        I don’t know these jonos but it sounds as if they couldn’t part their hair straight. (Is that why so many men shave their heads now?)

  17. captain hook 18

    quite right bad12.
    dont let him wrigle off the hook either.
    too many posters here are busy with irrelevant minutae when the substantive issues, policies and the cretins that dreamed them up are never brought to book.
    I dont give a shit about the market.
    the question is who got the money?

  18. aerobubble 19

    A while ago, years, there was a OZ film about a Autistic kid, who would go into a fit when loud noises occurred. So now there’s adverts on late night TV for a noisy car, that its a branded as the thing to be seen driving. Now, living in a street with an excessive number of these extra noisy cars passing by, sometimes late at night, I was wondering wtf. Its like a local auction or car dealer has a range of these motors and has to drive them around the town at all hours.

  19. Draco T Bastard 20

    If a Business Won’t Pay a Living Wage, It Shouldn’t Exist

    The point here is that it is possible for companies to pay their workers a living wage, make money, and give their customers an excellent product, all at the same time. The idea that we have to choose between paying workers well and having successful businesses is just false. That choice only exists when the owners insist on squeezing billions out of their workers.

    The low wages that John Key promised our businesses are solely to boost profits for the few. The lowering of wages is a process that’s been in place since 1984 and the Rogernomic Revolution and it is not doing our country, our society, any good.

    • felix 21.1

      Weird thing to say. Even weirder that he doesn’t think it’s weird.

      • TheContrarian 21.1.1

        That’s what I thought. It’s like if he was talking about Hone and said “You lost three debates, each time to a Maori” and then claimed it was OK because he was just being accurate.

        • Winston Smith

          Well to be fair, for a guy to be beaten by a women is pretty embarrasing because women are obviously inferior to men

          Hope that clears it up 🙂

        • felix

          Or teasing Paul Foster-Ponyclub for losing to a chubby gay. Just being accurate.

          • Winston Smith

            Yes but at least he lost to a man and not a woman…

            • BM

              Yes, if I remember correctly ,the list goes something like this

              – a Gay Woman
              – a Woman
              – a Gay man
              – a Maori Man
              – every one else fairly much equal

              – White Man top of the heap obviously.

              • felix

                I’d like to think you were being ironic, but that’s not far removed from the tripe you usually post here.

    • Murray Olsen 21.2

      The biggest politic mystery of my lifetime is why Goff didn’t join ACT with his mates. He could go out riding his midlife crisis machine with John Banks, with a lycra clad duck following along behind.

  20. A new study showing the inequality within our health systems

    The Burden of Disease study, which was released yesterday by the Ministry of Health, measured “health loss” or how much healthy life was lost due to premature death, illness or impairment.

    Amongst the report’s findings was that Maori had about a 75 per cent higher rate of health loss than non-Maori.

    The data confirmed research that Maori experienced higher exposures to risk factors for poor health, more injury, more disability and poorer outcomes when they interact with health services, the New Zealand Medical Association said.

    “The fact health loss in Maori is almost 1.8 times higher than in non-Maori and that this occurs earlier on in life is unacceptable.

    “Addressing these issues must be a priority for us all – government, society, industry and health professionals,” Dr Peterson said.


    A priority for us all. I agree with that – it’s about time we took our collective heads out the sand and addressed this real and important issue – it will take us all making it a priority to make progress.

    • northshoredoc 22.1

      Do you have any suggestions at to how iwi and whanau might address this along with the health sector ?

      • marty mars 22.1.1

        I think that the issues are systemic and therefore any solutions must come at the system level. There have been good initiatives that have encouraged Māori to interact with health services in better ways, those initiatives have broken down some barriers on both sides a bit. Until we reduce the risk factors for poor health, have fewer injuries and disability for Māori then these trends will continue. A big factor in those issues is poverty. All that iwi and whānau can do is keep encouraging their people to seek health assistance and knowledge. If we as a country made it a priority then we would be addressing all of the issues raised above, holistically and historically.

        • northshoredoc

          I’m not sure if I understand what you mean by ‘systemic issues’.

          I certainly agree with you on the reduction of risk factors for poor health and I’d like to see iwi and the DHBs work more closely together on issues around cardiovascular disease in particular and ensuring vaccinations are offered and up to date.

          While I agree that poverty is a factor in health amongst Maori even after adjusting for incomes via the decile ratings within the various DHBs the Maori population is doing worse health wise than they deserve to.

  21. Winston Smith 23


    Just in case anyone missed this

  22. So has Phil Goff apologize yet?

  23. Pascal's bookie 26

    Pretty swish advocacy website about the future of what’s wrongly called ‘recreational fishing’:


    • joe90 26.1

      Beaut astro-turfing.

    • felix 26.2

      “wrongly called ‘recreational fishing’”

      What should it properly be called?

      • Pascal's bookie 26.2.1

        I dunno, but not that. Sure, fishing’s fun, but unless you are catching and releasing, (which is just torturing animals as far as I can tell) then it’s not just recreation.

        The recreation/commercial split makes it looks like games vs work so of course the working people should get first dibs. Fuck that.

        It’s all of our fish and if people want fish for dinner then they should be able to go and catch it.

        If they can’t, or don’t want to, then yeah, people should be able to buy fish at the shop. As long as that doesn’t mean people who want to fish, can’t.

        Calling it ‘recreational fishing’ implies that a NZer catching fish for the family dinner, is a less worthy use of the resource than selling it. And that’s just fucking daft.

        • felix

          Yeah I get you now. Food Fishing?

          Actually how about just “Fishing”? It’s the commercial fishers who are going beyond what ought to be anyone’s ordinary right, so they get the extra descriptor.

        • Draco T Bastard


          It all seems to be about the commercialisation of every resource we have and then the transfer of those resources into private hands.

    • karol 27.1

      That news item is badly written and confusing. This is a better explanation of the case as of July 29.


      • Pascal's bookie 27.1.1

        What’s confusing about it? Seemed pretty clear to me. It’s a law blog more than a news site, and it isn’t really explaining the case so much as the trial, and how it went for Wishart, he lost big time.

        • karol

          For legal types their attention to (spelling) detail is poor:

          The jury found that the material published about former Wellington Treasury official and diplomat Lindsay Smallbone that related to matters of sexual perverion and more was also published recklessly.

          The confusion was that at first I thought Wishart must have written the book, then wondered if Mrs London was his wife – had to ponder:

          The 10 day trial related to material published in the book published by Wishart’s company and co-written by himself and his wife, Paulette London, regarding the abduction of Mrs London’s children off a London street decades ago.In the course of telling their story, which Mr Wishart considered to be essentially a biography, they described various activities that characterised Mr Smallbone as sexually perverse, voyeuristic and otherwise deviant.

  24. xtasy 28

    The US dictatorship is flexing its muscles:


    “Snowden link to encrypted email service closes”

    This may appear trivial to some, it is damned serious!

  25. xtasy 29

    Excuse me, I am having to beg here, for this to be copied in, aye?

    I spent half an hour to get this loaded! It a a centenary for the Communist Party of Chile to celebrate, but that is not what we want in NZ, right, or wrong?

    Anyway, I offer, music and dance to the occasion. I also observed some jihadist videos tonight, so just out of curiosity, dear John Key, dear SIS and GCSB, I must now be put onto your WATCH list, please, if you may have missed me so far. I am an ENEMY of the nation, and count me in, please!

    That is because you lazy layabouts sucking the tax payer dry have nothing better to do. Fuck YOU all SIS, GCSB and hangers on that stupify and dumb down people. If you want to shut me out, you have to KILL me, thank you!

  26. xtasy 30

    Viva Chile, viva la revolution, via Novo Zelandia, por favor!

    Fuck Key, Natzional, fuck the government and the brainwashing crap society imposed on people that should be free and speak freely!!!!

  27. xtasy 31

    Celebrating 100 years of the Communist Party of Chile is worth this:

    But since posting this my browser and internet connection is going crazy, I do not wonder more as to why!

    We live in a SURVEILLANCE DICTATORSHIP! Get it, or keep on slumbering!

    Good night, I better sign off, and keep on the fight and struggle, they hate you for doing so!!!

  28. Paul 32

    The Herald showing how to frame a question to change the debate.
    No longer….an investigation in why we are dropping are standards.
    Instead …’unrealistically high expectations”
    Channeling Tory speak.


    The Herald’s leading question
    Should the 100% Pure slogan go?
    Yes – it’s setting an unrealistically high expectation
    No – it is still an important part of New Zealand’s image
    Not sure

    Where are these options?
    Yes – being clean and green adds value to our exports, gives us a point of difference, preserves the environment for our grandchildren, provides healthier food for our population and creates better quality jobs for New Zealanders
    No – the government needs to raise its game on environmental matters
    Not sure

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