Open mike 10/02/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 10th, 2022 - 241 comments
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Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

241 comments on “Open mike 10/02/2022 ”

  1. tsmithfield 1

    Sigh….

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/covid-19-omicron-outbreak-sir-ian-taylor-speed-up-testing-wait-times-or-nz-will-grind-to-a-halt/AU7R2DQMMETPU3LHZHQHJWA4LI/

    According to Taylor the Lucira test provides an accurate result at the level of PCR testing within 30 minutes (find out more about this test in the link below)

    https://checkit.lucirahealth.com/

    was offered to our government 18 months ago and they still haven't approved it:

    "The Lucira test that we reacquainted the MoH with after a year and a half of having done nothing about it, gives a clinically approved, PCR equivalent result in 30 minutes."

    And the government wants to conduct its own tests despite it being approved by a number of reputable countries already:

    "Despite the number of technically advanced countries in the world that have approved Lucira, the ministry has decided they need to conduct more test of their own. Who knows how long those will take."

    Honestly, I just shake my head at this. And this is the organisation who thinks they can administer RATS that we don't have enough of?

    There was a guy from one of the testing organisations interviewed on ZB yesterday who was commenting on how the testing system is already under pressure and the Omicron thing has hardly started yet.

    The Lucira test would take a lot of the burden off our testing system. But they aren't even approved yet despite the MOH knowing about them for ages.

  2. Adrian 2

    TS, hasn’t it got through to you, they are shit, not fit for purpose, the virus has outflanked them. Not suitable for small scale testing ,only large town size testing where known failure assumption calculations can give an overview. They are like asking 3 people in a taxi who they will vote for and extrapolating that out to 5 million.

    • tsmithfield 2.1

      Evidence? I thought a link to that would be appropriate.

    • Ad 2.2

      We're not using them and we are one of the biggest private sector employers in the southern hemisphere.

      • tsmithfield 2.2.1

        Maybe because they are quite pricey compared to RAT tests. But a lot more accurate than RATS.

        From this link:

        https://checkit.lucirahealth.com/

        "Indication for Use

        The Lucira Check It COVID-19 Test Kit is a single-use test kit intended to detect the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19. This test is authorized for over-the-counter (OTC) use with self-collected nasal swab samples in individuals with or without COVID-19 symptoms aged 14 and older, and in children aged 2-13 collected by an adult. This test is similar to a PCR test in that it utilizes a molecular amplification technology for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA.

        Positive results are indicative of the presence of SARS-CoV-2. Individuals who test positive should self-isolate and seek additional care from their healthcare provider. Positive results do not rule out bacterial infection or co-infection with other viruses.

        Negative results do not preclude SARS-CoV-2 infection. Individuals who test negative and continue to experience COVID-like symptoms should seek follow up care from their healthcare provider. Negative results are presumptive and confirmation with a molecular assay performed in a laboratory, if necessary, for patient management may be performed.

        For use under the Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization only.

        Test results can be reported through the LUCI secure portal, to relevant public health authorities in accordance with local, state, and federal requirements."

      • Ad 2.2.2

        …though we may reconsider that for some cases in light of isolation no longer being required for critical workers, as announced this morning:

        Covid-19 Omicron outbreak: Critical workers given isolation exemption – NZ Herald

        • tsmithfield 2.2.2.1

          Cool. Looks like we will qualify for that.

          Though I couldn’t see a link for where to apply in the article, which isn’t particularly helpful.

  3. Jenny How to get there 3

    Tone deaf
    (A history)

    "We don't have any bread? Let them eat cake"

    Marie Antoinette explains why she doesn't understand the suffering of the poor in France.

    Prime Minister Arden has just slapped down her Associate Minister of Housing for suggesting that rent control could be part of the solution to cruelly unaffordable rents.

    "I hear nothing from that side….."

    The Prime Minister explains why she is deaf to the suffering of renters.

    'I hear nothing from that side': PM on defence over 'eye-watering' rent increases, 'skyrocketing price of living'

    Zane Small – Yesterday 5:22 pm

    'I hear nothing from that side': PM on defence over 'eye-watering' rent increases, 'skyrocketing price of living' (msn.com)

    • Blazer 3.1

      She can be deaf,dumb and…blind when she chooses to.

      A house is not a home,when there's no one…living…there'

      40,009 empty homes in Auckland 'earning' $6000 a week for the past year are not a cause for concern.angry

      • UncookedSelachimorpha 3.1.1

        This is a disgrace, and a government could easily at least try to do something about it.

    • Jimmy 3.2

      Unfortunately I can't find the article to link to, but they were predicting that rents will increase significantly in 2022. And the way things are going I think they are correct.

      • Patricia Bremner 3.2.1

        It was One Roof I think… they are loving property rises and predicted rents to rise steeply… a signal to their members?

        • Jimmy 3.2.1.1

          Thanks Patricia. Although interestingly, I heard an interview on One Zb the other day from a Barfoot & Thompson guy who said last month the market had changed and for the first time the vendors were more keen than the buyers, and possibly the market may have turned slightly to favor buyers more.

    • arkie 3.3

      Centrist NZ Labour party is hostile to anyone coming from the left. A prime example is this fantastic speech by Chloe Swarbrick yesterday, followed by a bizarre hit piece here today.

      https://vimeo.com/675304444

      Pointing out the difference between the rhetoric and the inaction is unacceptable, be happy with the tepid incrementalism, there is no alternative.

      [lprent: Authors opinions are their own, in this case one from advantage. Read the policy about attributing author opinions to anything other than what they think. Plus (FFS) – Advantage does seem to spend a lot of time here telling the NZLP off.

      Since you can’t appear to simply deal with an opinion without simply smearing it by implying that it is a NZLP hit, then I can’t see any reason to tolerate your stupidity. It is unacceptable. Banned for 4 weeks for being a complete fuckwit. ]

  4. Tiger Mountain 5

    COVID fever fallout continues in Kaitaia. Christian school Abundant Life has been closed by the Ministry of Education due to insufficient available qualified staff. Principal Mark Tan–a previous Natzo would be MP, Mike Sabin was selected–has headed for the hills on a years sabbatical. Tan is anti vaccination and anti mandate. The Far North as ever needs better community leaders.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/northland-age/news/abundant-life-school-seniors-in-limbo-after-closure-of-senior-school/EQV4SIBUEO2QBQOBHHB6U4ZSKI/

  5. Sanctuary 6

    The police will clear parliament today. The response has been characterised by restraint and de-escalation in order to respect the right to protest and to not give anti-vaxxers the radicalising martyrdom moment many of them clearly want. But it is clear the protesters are not going to go peacefully and continued restraint risks escalation if reinforcement turns up and the crowd tries to storm parliament. The police can't afford to keep 100+ officers tied up 24×7 for weeks and I read in Stuff this morning they've called in 100 extra cops overnight.

    The grounds will be cleared today and the whole area closed to the public for the next little while is my guess.

    • Cricklewood 6.1

      Looks that way, hopefully it doesn't descend into chaos. If it does expect protests to become more disruptive, looking at the forecast I suspect the better response is to let the incoming weather system do it…

      • Sanctuary 6.1.1

        The problem is they have a set of inchoate and impossible demands which when combined with threats against politicians and a decentralised organisational structure means there can be no peaceful meeting with the speaker to hand over a petition or something followed by a dispersal – in other words, the symbolic rituals of democracy are not going to be observed by a bunch of people who see themselves through an over-wrought lens of crusading martyrdom.

        So just arrest them all.

        • DukeEll 6.1.1.1

          Repost

          Sanctuary

          2 June 2012 at 1:21 pm

          The idea you need a permit to protest is an oxymoron which I would have thought every liberty loving right winger would denounce – prising your liberty from your Cold dead hands and all that other stuff you hear ad nauseum from the freedom loving lectern lictors of the right.

          Of course, when actually called to account to defend ancient liberties and rights in a free society, our righties always disappoint, revealing themselves as petty minded authoritarians obsessed with fussing over the detritus of process as a hollow substitute to defending what they hypocritically spout on every other occasion.

          • observer 6.1.1.1.1

            Who is saying they need a permit to protest?

            They staged a protest. It was (mostly) peaceful. Now they have a decision to make.

            There are basically 2 kinds of protest – limited and unlimited time. The former is common (I've been on marches and the like, I bet many of us have). That was this Convoy, or so we thought. Drive, arrive, speak, leave.

            The latter is a sit-in, an occupation. It can work, but usually for a specific, achievable goal (e.g. students at a campus, wanting a change in some college policy).

            Is there any such goal here? None apparent. Coffee and a chat with the PM? So what are they staying for? No demands have been issued (of any plausible nature).

            Mandates will end at some stage but only the utterly deluded think this protest will influence the decision in any way.

            • DukeEll 6.1.1.1.1.1

              An observational comment. What your replied to was sanctuaries comment on this very same blog from 10 years ago regarding the right to protest.

              • observer

                Yes, I know. I can read.

                The right to protest is fundamental, and of course it is not the issue here. You are creating a straw man.

                Would you like to engage with the points I made? What are the protesters’ demands, and should they be allowed permanent occupation and disruption until those demands are met? When does that ever happen at protests?

                • DukeEll

                  I don't give a fig about your questions.

                  It's the hypocrisy I find amusing, accept your fucking mandate peasant when Sanc agrees with the mandate, let protests do whatever when Sanc likes the protest, plus bleating on about ancient liberties and rights. most "left" or "approved" protests are quite incoherent as well except for their leadership which is usually exceptional and eloquent.

                • The Chairman

                  The right to protest is fundamental, and of course it is not the issue here.

                  The right to protest is an issue here.

                  Disruption is part and parcel of peaceful protest. It occurs whenever large crowds gather. Therefore, is no excuse for denying people of their fundamental right.

                  • McFlock

                    Lucky nobody is doing that.

                    I've protested for years, occupied buildings back in the day. The standard practise when the protest involved trespass (never involved threats to "hang 'em high", but this is a different crowd) was for people to decide whether or not they wished to be arrested. We literally discussed this at meetings. Then, when the tolerance of the authorities had expired, them that wanted to avoid arrest left, and the ones who were cool with it stayed. And we had lawyers set up to advise them, they all knew the process to expect, and they made their decision.

                    People don't have a right to camp on parliament's lawn in perpetuity. In my day, the Speaker was the nominated owner/occupier of Parliament grounds for trespass orders, and the streets are covered by various obstruction laws (in addition to the catch-all "disorderly behaviour").

                    This isn't a double standard. These are the rules left wing protestors have lived under for decades.

                    • Shanreagh

                      I've protested for years, occupied buildings back in the day. The standard practise when the protest involved trespass (never involved threats to "hang 'em high", but this is a different crowd) was for people to decide whether or not they wished to be arrested. We literally discussed this at meetings.

                      This protest gives me the impression that having a meeting was never really thought about, let alone having some common fundamentals agreed between the groups.

                      Someone said 'let's copy the Canadians, that seemed to work so well for them, we'll all drive to Wellington'.

                      Sounds of gas being filled, 'have I time to write some wonky written anti vax placards? yes! done, zoom, away we go.

                      The story could continue but suffice to say, they have not got even one tame MP to come to meet them let alone anything to give them that might have been released simultaneously to the media so everyone could see what they are about.

                    • The Chairman

                      Lucky nobody is doing that.

                      Ardern said while New Zealanders have a right to protest, it's not fair when the lives of the public are disrupted.

                      https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2022/02/prime-minister-jacinda-ardern-brushes-off-parliament-protest-stand-off-with-police.html

                      The right to protest doesn't cease when the tolerance of the authorities expires.

                      As you point out, there are laws in place to deal with any misbehaviour.

                    • McFlock

                      People have the right to protest, and people (even the PM) have the right to point out when protestors are being dicks.

                      The right to protest is not at issue here. What's at issue is the entitlement of fools who think they can jam up downtown traffic for days with zero repercussions.

                      Most protests, even smallish ones, involve some disruption. Disruption that is tolerated, but not a right. When it becomes more difficult to tolerate disruption than deal with it, the cops can and will arrest. And for some reason the tolerance of the authorities seems to change more according to who is protesting, rather than how – but that's another debate entirely.

                    • The Chairman

                      The right to protest is not at issue here.

                      Of course it is. The related disruption is being used as an excuse to cease it. When all that is required is to ensure the disruption is minimised.

                      This is a large grassroots group that have been largely very well behaved.

        • Fran 6.1.1.2

          No, their demands are not incoherent, they want an end to the mandates and reinstatement of the Bill of Rights. That is it. This is reasonable given that omicron evades the vaccine.

          This is the first Labour Government to deliberately put people out of work and people are understandably unhappy about this. The powers that be refused to meet with them so they could hand over the paperwork so they are staying until things change.

          This is a peaceful protest, the response from our elected officials is not.

          • James Thrace 6.1.1.2.1

            "Reinstatement of the Bill of Rights"

            The Bill of Rights doesn't need reinstating. It has never been rescinded.

            Several court judgments have declared that the mandates are not a breach of the bill of rights and are a <i> justified limitation </i> on society. There is a larger public health purpose at play.

            The evidence overseas of the death toll and strain on the health system should be all that is needed to understand what is at risk in New Zealand should the outbreak become even worse.

          • Sanctuary 6.1.1.2.2

            "…The powers that be refused to meet with them so they could hand over the paperwork…"

            The powers that be being the people they are threatening to hang and subject to kangaroo courts, those powers that be? Not unreasonable then to not want to meet with people making regular death threats against you.
            And what paperwork? A photocopy of Magna Carta and garbled re-write of the Grand Remonstrance?

            Look, these people are breach of public health orders. No one is being deliberately put out of work, they are choosing not to comply with lawful vaccine mandates and the consequences of that. get the vaccine, keep the job.

          • observer 6.1.1.2.3

            And this is the whole problem.

            they want an end to the mandates and reinstatement of the Bill of Rights. That is it.

            People like Fran presume to decide what the protest is really about. Meanwhile the protesters decide it's about various other things. How inconvenient.

            From their own words … It's about demanding other people don't wear a mask, it's about children being murdered by a vaccine, it's about making violent threats to journalists (any Bill of Rights for them?), it's about 1080, it's about loving Trump, it's about Counterspin, it's about Ardern being controlled by mysterious forces, and so on, and so on …

            Again, those things may not be what you want to protest about, Fran. But you don't get to create your own reality.

            • Fran 6.1.1.2.3.1

              If you had bothered to do some research you would know that the organisers were very clear about their purpose and have stayed on message. If you are only getting your information from the mainstream media then of course you would not know that.

              • observer

                My "research" is reading their own words, in their own social media, on their own signs. I bothered, which is why I quoted some of them in my comment.

                If you are only getting your information by carefully not reading them, then of course you would not know that. Because – be honest now – you do not want to know.

                Is Clarke Gayford in jail for drug dealing? That's "staying on message" – theirs.

              • Shanreagh

                You just needed to read the placards carried on the cars and at the protest to know what the message was……gradually throughout yesterday the few anti mandate signs disappeared and today we have had the wrongly spelled ones about PM and others going to be tried per the Nuremberg laws , how vaccine kills, and the stoic guy who waved a flag all day 'Natural immunity 99.6%'

        • Jenny how to get there 6.1.1.3

          I fully support the right of this unmasked, unvaccinated crowd to hold a protest on the steps of parliament for as long as they like, (until the fall sick and leave of their own free will in embarrassment.

          But for goodness sake. At least tow away all their illegally parked vehicles.

          I have been to several hikoi and protests at parliament and we never dared illegally park our vehicles.

          Why do these right wing protesters get treated with kid gloves by the council parking authorities? When left wing protesters get pulled over and ticketed for the slightest infringement?

    • Blade 6.2

      The commissioner obviously read my missive to him yesterday. yes

    • coge 6.3

      Arresting mothers and the elderly isn't going to make it all go away.

  6. Peter 7

    Some of the morons gathered in Wellington want the PM to be like Trump. She could be today.

    Get up a posse of police and military, batons, tear gas, rubber bullets and a Bible. Proceed down the steps of Parliament. Deal to the mob and march the staunch march of someone in charge, along the road, round the corner to the Treasury. Wave the Bible in the air.

    So many would, be overcame by such a display of authority injections may be needed to revive them.

    • Macro 7.1

      laugh

      Now that's a thought!

    • Just Saying 7.2

      Glad you're not authoritarian, Peter. Harbouring views about dumb peasants who need to be put in their place.

      Did it ever occur to any of you superior types that it just might be the marginalised, that could, and in many cases, are, trying to express what they know of the danger authoritarianism poses?

      • observer 7.2.1

        You are missing the point.

        Peter is simply reminding us of exactly what Trump did:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Trump_photo_op_at_St._John%27s_Church

        Of course Ardern will not do that, nor should she, not would any reasonable person want her to be like Trump. But (if you still don't get the irony) …

        the protesters with Trump flags want her to.

      • KJT 7.2.2

        Where were all these "Freedom protesters" when National search and survaillance bill was passed?

        And a fat "meh" from the so called "freedom and rights" advocates on TS when I posted on it at the time.

        A much more draconian example of abuse of State power, than necessery measures to keep us safe during a pandemic.

        • Tiger Mountain 7.2.2.1

          agree KJT, more millions from the sirkey Govt. for the state snoops including life long immunity/anonymity for operatives and extended powers for Govt. Ministries–hardly a squeak out of anyone at the time

        • Blazer 7.2.2.2

          Yes.There are protests everywhere when Labour is in power.

          I asked striking teachers why they never bothered when the Natz were not interested in raising their pay for 9 years ….their reply…we knew they wouldn't take any…notice.

      • Peter 7.2.3

        Dumb peasants of course should not be put in their place – they should choose their own place.

        For example they can choose to have all the top positions in fields like immunology and epidemiology in New Zealand. I mean in the past couple of years they have tried to convince me they know more than all the so called experts. I accept they might be marginalised by the fact they are treated as if they are talking shit. Big deal.

        I appreciate they might be pissed off that their parents made them do things and they didn't always get their own way from when they were born. Now they are trying to express what they know of the danger authoritarianism poses from their life learning? This is their way of fighting back?

        I don't care about that. The choice is to accept manipulative ignorant fuckwits leading other ignorant fuckwits running my world or not.

    • Jimmy 7.3

      Someone should open up a mobile coffee shop and start offering the protesters free flat whites, but put a laxative in the coffee. That would get them going.

    • Anker 7.4

      I am currently watching the live webcam on Radio NZ at parliament grounds. Its kind of facinating!.

      Police showing patience, but persistence in holding the line, gradually making a little ground. Periodically arrests are being made…….

      • Sanctuary 7.4.1

        I lol'd at their "leader" ducking off to Invercargill to get "reinforcements"

        To paraphrase Blackadder, he'll be right behind them – in his case, 994km behind them.

  7. Blade 8

    HDPA explains something many misguided acolytes of climate change either don't get, or are wilfully ignoring.

    https://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/on-air/heather-du-plessis-allan-drive/opinion/heather-du-plessis-allan-does-climate-change-really-matter-when-push-comes-to-shove/

    It's something that constantly bemuses me – people who tout clean green energy, when in fact it's either not clean and green, or the economic realities at present just don't stack up. Case in point:

    https://www.npr.org/2019/09/10/759376113/unfurling-the-waste-problem-caused-by-wind-energy

    Quote:

    ''There aren't many options to recycle or trash turbine blades, and what options do exist are expensive, partly because the U.S. wind industry is so young. It's a waste problem that runs counter to what the industry is held up to be: a perfect solution for environmentalists looking to combat climate change.''

    Talking of nuttiness…what are our fuel prices going to be when Marsden Point closes in a few months time? Labour could have expanded the refinery life, but Labour ministers didn't want to know.

    And what of coal?

    https://www.1news.co.nz/2021/03/15/nzs-coal-imports-highest-in-14-years-but-energy-minister-berates-acts-utterly-false-suggestion-why/

    There is nothing wrong with moving to green energy production. That is a sane thing to do. But as a rock climbing instructor will tell you, when traversing a rock face, always have three limbs making a solid grip before embarking on your next move. Sage advice.

    • Blazer 8.1

      ' Labour could have expanded the refinery life, but Labour ministers didn't want to know.'

      I thought the refinery was a private business.

      I also understand there was a takeover offer in play ,which had a covenant that the refinery had to close for it to…proceed.

    • KJT 8.2

      The refinery is reaching the end of it's design life, and is also too small compared to overseas refineriesto be economic.

      Keeping it open is more likely to increase, not reduce, overall energy costs.

      And. Buying into the anti Green energy propaganda, by claiming Green energy is “not a perfect solution, so we should stay with hydrocarbons”, is the sort of bullshit the tobacco industry used. Worthy of Chris Bishop at his tobacco lobbyist, bullshitting best.

      • Blade 8.2.1

        You really should read:

        ''There is nothing wrong with moving to green energy production. That is a sane thing to do. But as a rock climbing instructor will tell you, when traversing a rock face, always have three limbs making a solid grip before embarking on your next move. Sage advice.''

        • KJT 8.2.1.1

          Poor analogy.

          But. To carry on with it. The fossil fuel industry, and those you are quoting, want us to stay on the rock face, without ever going to the next pitch, until we lose our grip and fall.

          Propaganda about the supposed inefficiencies and costs of more sustainable energy, is meant to keep the business model going as long as possible. Lessons fossil fuel suppliers have learnt from the tobacco and sugar industries.

          • Blade 8.2.1.1.1

            ''Poor analogy.

            But. To carry on with it. The fossil fuel industry, and those you are quoting, wants us to stay on the rock face, without ever going to the next pitch, until we lose our grip and fall.''

            Everyone has an agenda in this sphere of activity. Of course the fossil fuel industry will fight for survival. That is fair and just. They will tell bs, just like the bs from the other side I have pointed out.

            However, they know, and you should too, that the fossil fuel industry is a finite proposition. I still think it has decades to run, but it's dying as we speak.

            Making the next move on the rock face demands a solid foothold. That is something the green energy movement cannot provide at the moment.

            For example, this from Google:

            ''Mr Wilson said a study on EV battery life had recommended full factory replacements as a good, yet expensive, option. Estimates for a full factory replacement on a battery are $7,700 plus fitting for a 24KWH battery on a Nissan Leaf and $35,000 for an 85KWH battery on a Tesla.''

            Yeah, a South Auckland family already having their choice of a cheap vehicle curtailed by new car import regulations would not be able to move to an electric vehicle.

            Problem number two with electric cars:

            The national grid ( including household electricals) will not be able to cope when electric car numbers meet a critical mass.

            https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/102240245/power-network-may-struggle-to-deal-with-electric-vehicles

            Now this is a debatable issue. But my point again – we don't have a reliable source of green energy that we can say wont cause issues…or if it does, such issues are easily fixed.

            • KJT 8.2.1.1.1.1

              You haven't "pointed out BS from the other side".

              You have simply repeated BS from the anti more renewable energy side.

              The cost of replacement batteries for an EV, for one, is immaterial, when the batteries now available will last longer than the normal life of the rest of the car.

              The National grid is in the process of being upgraded. The cost will be a fraction of the ongoing costs of upgrades to our aging fossil fuel infrastructure, by the way.

              Kicking the can down the road has gone on for too long.
              We have the capability and should have been over 100% more renewable energy in the National grid, over a decade ago. Nationals power “reforms” and lack of action has put us back decades

              • Blade

                ''The cost of replacement batteries for an EV, for one, is immaterial, when the batteries now available will last longer than the normal life of the rest of the car.''

                That's debatable…but?

                https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/aug/20/electric-car-batteries-what-happens-to-them

                ''The National grid is in the process of being upgraded. The cost will be a fraction of the ongoing costs of upgrades to our aging fossil fuel infrastructure, by the way.''

                That's debatable again, and does not consider the upgrade of house power delivery capabilities for many homes. I have read about this and asked an electrician. Even the electrician and his partner couldn't agree on the issue.

                I'm more than prepared to switch to greener energy…but for me it won't be until the bugs of delivery ad reliability and economy have been worked out

    • Ad 8.3

      Waste turbine blades are 2/10ths of fuck all compared to the daily CO2 generated by Huntly.

      What the government could do about it is have a more serious chat with the owners of Tiwai Point. MBIE and Minister Wood are being played.

  8. Jimmy 9

    Australians are fuming about their petrol prices hitting $2 a litre.

    • DukeEll 9.1

      yea, but have you had a parking ticket or a speeding fine in australia?

      • alwyn 9.1.1

        In my case the answer is yes and ouch.

        Currently, in Victoria, 10 kph over the speed limit will cost you $363 and some demerit points. While I lived there I once got a fine of about $100 for being 2 kph over the 100 kph limit on the Princes Highway from Melbourne to Geelong It is a multilane divided highway.

        Mind you when I lived there the Northern Territory, outside the towns, had no speed limit at all. They went all soft in about 2007 though and brought in limits.

        • Tricledrown 9.1.1.1

          Alwyn you have to drive 3 times further to get anywhere in Australia not to mention the congestion in Australia's big cities where most people live.

          So while fuel is cheaper per litre you will use a lot more fuel.

          Then find a carpark and pay for the toll road as well.

          That's why public transport is more widely used.

          • Blade 9.1.1.1.1

            When I visited rellies in Aussie, I was met at the airport and told they ''lived just up the road.'' Two hours later we were home safe and sound.sad

            • Patricia Bremner 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Our power was out pm for line work. Late joining in here. Travelled NZ Canberra 5 years ago, where we were met by my brother for a three hour drive to Dalmeny NSW, yes distances are close if 3 hours away. Later in our stay we had a one hour drive to meet friends for coffee!! Whole other world. Big vehicles too because…kangaroos.

              • Blade

                ''Whole other world. Big vehicles too because…kangaroos.''

                True, there is no comparison with their understanding of distance and ours.

                While we like to think our nations are similar, there are still major differences, both good and bad between the two countries.

              • alwyn

                I spent the last 18 months of my time in Australia touring the country. All our driving was on sealed roads mind. I knew damn well I shouldn't go on any of the outback tracks. We kept off the road at dawn and dusk. That was when the kangaroos were out and they were very dangerous. They moved so fast and so erratically. I have been told that if they saw 2 lights, your headlights, coming toward them they might jump between them and straight into the middle of your windscreen. With an adult red kangaroo weighing 40 – 50 kilos it would be a spectacular bang.

                We loved being out in the outback and things like crossing the Nullabor. The stars are so amazingly bright out there with no settlements or atmospheric pollution.

            • alwyn 9.1.1.1.1.2

              That sounds like getting met at Mangere and having to get to Mission Bay.

              Mind you, given the way most New Zealand drivers behave, I'm not sure you would get there that fast and I wouldn't bet on making it safely.

              • Patricia Bremner

                It was a day of storms and our trip was perhaps made longer dodging all the branches that had come down.

            • Blazer 9.1.1.1.1.3

              Did they recognise you?

              Was it Maloolabaa?

      • Jimmy 9.1.2

        Yep the tickets are expensive but luckily I only get about one a year, whereas I have to fill up with petrol about 50 times a year!

    • GreenBus 9.2

      Have the Yanks hit a $1 yet? That would start another war…somewhere.

  9. observer 10

    On the protests – it's pretty straightforward.

    On Tuesday there was a protest, majority peaceful, some nasty aggression from a minority, but overall nothing out of the ordinary.

    On Wednesday the majority of protesters left. They had made their point and were a news headline. The remainder were given a day's grace. Meanwhile major disruption continued in central Wellington. The extra day was sufficient.

    Today they are being moved on. Let's hope it does not get much worse. But there is no point saying "no need, they can leave Friday or Saturday or whenever". Clearly some have no intention of doing what protesters usually (and sensibly) do … declare victory and leave.

    They have no clue what they are doing, because they live in echo chambers but cannot even agree on goals, never mind tactics. They could have scored a PR win, but they've chosen to alienate people instead. Nobody else to blame.

    • weka 10.1

      I also think they're politically naive when it comes to strategy, but they may be thinking that another set of headlines of them being arrested is useful to their movement eg see how repressive the state is, sign up to our movement here. And they might not be wrong.

    • observer 10.2

      You can follow developments here:

      https://twitter.com/Te_Taipo/status/1491493012404244483

      (note the protest "leaders" are getting out of the way, leaving their followers to get arrested. Standard practice by far right agitators, always has been).

      • alwyn 10.2.1

        It sounds just like the 1981 protests about the Springbok tour. Even down to the protest leaders keeping out of the way. Standard practice by far left agitators, always has been.

        Same place too. There were some major protests in Molesworth Street.

        Oh, but it takes me back. As Mary Hopkins put it even earlier. "Those were the days my friends"

        • observer 10.2.1.1

          Anyone with any grasp of the history of the 1981 tour would know that leaders like John Minto were arrested (and assaulted) multiple times.

          You probably know it too, but in a laughable attempt to score a point you lie, as usual.

          • alwyn 10.2.1.1.1

            I can only think of a single occasion when Minto was arrested.

            You no doubt are an authority. When and where was he arrested on these "Multiple" occasions and what happened at each trial?

            I certainly don't remember him leading from the front in Wellington.

  10. Reality 11

    The deluded motley protestors/rabble seem to have funds for tents, petrol, time off work (if they are employed/employable). They have no regard for damaging Parliament grounds, or grossly inconveniencing people and businesses in Wellington. The anti-vaxxers among them could get infected with Covid and need medical/hospital treatment so will they accept drug interventions to assist their recovery despite not wanting the vaccine in their body? Will they be grateful to the state for the care they receive? Doubt it.

    • alwyn 11.1

      If you live in Wellington, or visit on occasion, I suggest you visit Shelley Bay. The occupation there has been going on for about 15 months now. It looks exactly like what you are describing.

  11. Poission 12

    And todays forecast is rain with a number of falling satellites.

    Preliminary analysis show the increased drag at the low altitudes prevented the satellites from leaving safe-mode to begin orbit raising maneuvers, and up to 40 of the satellites will reenter or already have reentered the Earth’s atmosphere.

    https://www.spacex.com/updates/

    https://www.spaceweather.com/images2022/09feb22/kindex_starlink.jpg

    spaceweather the constraint on today's technology.

    Another geomagnetic CME will hit in the next few hours.

    https://www.spaceweather.com/images2022/09feb22/justdetected.png

  12. weka 13

    That's the sound of David Seymour's head exploding.

    https://twitter.com/wekatweets/status/1491523178656505857

    • Jimmy 13.1

      Yes I think rent controls could well be on the cards in the future, which is why I think some landlords are predicted to increase rents this year while they can. They can only increase once a year but I think they are making it a larger rise to compensate for the less mortgage interest being deductible and the uncertainty of future increases.

      • weka 13.1.1

        In which case I have zero sympathy for the ones doing that if they get burned.

        • Jimmy 13.1.1.1

          I increased the rent on my property to cover the mortgage interest portion I am no longer able to deduct. Tenant (of over 15 years) was very understanding and the rent is still lower by $100 a week compared to next door identical property that is rented out and managed by a real estate company.

      • Belladonna 13.1.2

        I can't see rent controls happening in this term – especially given Ardern has explicitly ruled it out when Poto Williams floated it.

        If it were announced, as a Labour/Greens policy – or even a GP bottom line for negotiations (not that the GP tend to do this) – I'd expect to see all rents take a very solid tick upwards in the expectation of a flat period.

        The problem with rent controls is that it creates an incentive for rental owners to sell (especially if they see that they've taken the bulk of the capital gain out of the property already). If they're within the 10 year margin, then they may wait out a few years until they're in the 'free' zone.
        And, when they sell, they're almost inevitably going to sell to owner-occupiers (not that that's a bad thing, in itself), but it reduces the rental housing stock.

        Currently, there are literally 100s of applicants for each rental house coming available in Auckland (have friends who've been through the process of trying to find a new house). Reducing the housing stock available, increases this pressure: both on new rents (current tenant has left, so rent control no longer applies), and on the careful … selection … of the tenant (solo-mums or people with past credit issues need not apply)

        • UncookedSelachimorpha 13.1.2.1

          And, when they sell, they're almost inevitably going to sell to owner-occupiers (not that that's a bad thing, in itself), but it reduces the rental housing stock.

          Sounds like a house with people in it, will switch to a house with people living in it, which sounds fine in a housing crisis. But hopefully with controls, both the rent and the purchase of housing might become cheaper.

          I don't think NZ has that much specific demand for rentals, everyone I know who rents would rather own, but can't afford it (paying so much in rent is one of the problems). They are not renting for the flexibility or lifestyle.

          • Blazer 13.1.2.1.1

            The rents a large proportion of people pay are the same or more than a mortgage….its getting the deposit and finance that is the…problem,and finding a house to buy without getting outbid by…investors.

          • I Feel Love 13.1.2.1.2

            "Everyone I know who rents would rather own" – this!

            • AB 13.1.2.1.2.1

              If there is a mortgage on the house, then rent paid by tenants should be regarded as payment (or part-payment) of that mortgage. Tenants would effectively gain equity/part ownership of the house and receive a proportional share of its value when it was sold. A bureaucratic nightmare – but it might help end landlordism.

          • Belladonna 13.1.2.1.3

            Hmm. I know a fair chunk of 20-somethings who really don't want to own a home – though they feeling a whole lot of FOMO because of house price rises.

            Most of my peers wanted to travel in the 20s, or at least have mobility between cities; and spend their weekends partying, rather than doing house maintenance.

            And, there are plenty of people who – regardless of the house prices, will never be in the financial position to put together a deposit and buy a house. Even at the high point of home ownership in the 1990s – there were a good 25% of households renting.

            And, the shift from rental property to home ownership tends to reduce the number of people per dwelling: e.g. 3 bedroom property rented to 5 people (2 couples and a singleton) – bought and becomes owner-occupied with 3 people (a couple and a border; or a couple and 1 child).

        • tsmithfield 13.1.2.2

          But she didn't rule rent controls out. She said she wasn't considering them.

          When pressed by Ryan Bridge several times on AM the other day, should refused to rule them out during her term as prime minister.

        • Gypsy 13.1.2.3

          "especially given Ardern has explicitly ruled it out when Poto Williams floated it."

          The greatest challenge to the PM is not keeping that promise. After all she specifically ruled out penalties for people choosing not to get vaxxed. She promised no new taxes, and then introduced multiple new levies, amended the brightline test and changed tax deductibility rules for landlords.

          No, the greatest challenge is thinking of yet another way to twist the English language to breaking point to actually introduce rent controls without calling them that. I have every confidence she will figure it out.

        • weka 13.1.2.4

          I'd expect to see all rents take a very solid tick upwards in the expectation of a flat period.

          That's already happening though. Up 5.8% in the past year according to Shaw's speech.

          The problem with rent controls is that it creates an incentive for rental owners to sell (especially if they see that they've taken the bulk of the capital gain out of the property already). If they're within the 10 year margin, then they may wait out a few years until they're in the 'free' zone.

          Let them sell. If they're the greedy bastards, better they get out of this sector. Government can buy them, or local bodies, or NGOs or any number of people who have a commitment to ending the housing crisis and won't rip people off.

          And, when they sell, they're almost inevitably going to sell to owner-occupiers (not that that's a bad thing, in itself), but it reduces the rental housing stock.

          Why inevitably? Government can probably regulate that anyway.

          • Belladonna 13.1.2.4.1

            "Why inevitably? Government can probably regulate that anyway."

            It's hard to see how the Government can regulate *who* you sell to!

            And 'inevitably' to owners, since a rent-freeze would make it highly unlikely that investors (owning to rent) would be bidding.

            Yes, you take the investors out of the bidding – but, unless there is massive new build going on (minimum of 10x the consents we're seeing ATM) – the prices will still be driven up by owner-occupier competition.

            Every auction I've been to in the last 18 months (just locally in our neighbourhood – tire kicking to see what's happening) – has had 8-10 potential owner-occupiers seriously interested. There's a long way to go before that need/desire is mopped up by new builds.

            • weka 13.1.2.4.1.1

              It's hard to see how the Government can regulate *who* you sell to!

              Why? If rentals have to be registered with Tenancy Services, then when they are put up for sale, the landlord is required to let TS know, and the Crown gets first dibs.

              And 'inevitably' to owners, since a rent-freeze would make it highly unlikely that investors (owning to rent) would be bidding.

              Ae, so we need those houses being sold by current landlords to be bought and kept out of the private market. Local and central govt, NGOs and Iwi, community land trusts etc, anyone that's not going to see it as an investment that needs a big capital gains. Housing as homes again.

              • Belladonna

                Why? If rentals have to be registered with Tenancy Services, then when they are put up for sale, the landlord is required to let TS know, and the Crown gets first dibs.

                The Crown literally doesn't have the money to buy every rental house that comes up for sale.

                Also, do you want the headlines that we've already seen, over KO competing with first-time buyers!

                The Crown needs to be adding to the housing stock, not competing to buy existing housing.

                • weka

                  The Crown doesn't have to pay for every landlordee sale, they're can be the regulatory body that ensures rental numbers don't drop drastically (assuming this is an actual problem).

                  Also, do you want the headlines that we've already seen, over KO competing with first-time buyers!

                  That's largely an issue for Labour's messaging and public education team. Unless you are suggesting that KO shouldn't buy rentals instead of first home buyers.

                  The Crown needs to be adding to the housing stock, not competing to buy existing housing.

                  Why? What's wrong with shifting rentals out of the investor class into the hands of people who will prioritise tenants?

                  • Belladonna

                    The Crown doesn't have to pay for every landlordee sale, they're can be the regulatory body that ensures rental numbers don't drop drastically (assuming this is an actual problem).

                    Well, who *will* pay for the sales? The various NGOs who do community housing are absolutely strapped for cash. Unless the government stumps up, I don't see where the money is to come from?

                    If the proposal is to take the properties at a government-mandated lower price under the Public Works Act (or something similar), I'd say that the government would fall. Too much of the voting class in NZ has very substantial amounts of their wealth locked up in housing.

                    Also, if there are restrictions on landlord sales, there's going to be a huge temptation to find ways around the restrictions (a bit like all of the ways around Muldoon's rent freeze in the 1980s).

                    A simple way is for another family member to 'buy' the rental property, and then lease it to the family member who wants it. Technically, no change in the 'rental' status, but practically the same as owner-occupier purchase.

                    A government policy to "shift rentals out of the investor class" is, I think, politically unsaleable to the NZ electorate.

                    • weka

                      Well, who *will* pay for the sales? The various NGOs who do community housing are absolutely strapped for cash. Unless the government stumps up, I don't see where the money is to come from?

                      KO, local govt, NGOs that do have funding, Iwi, Community Land Trusts, co-operatives, private buyers or organisations that are willing to commit to keeping the property out of the property market for a longer period of time and to accept rent caps. Lots of options appear when we centre values, in this case the provision of stable homes. Most of my suggestions need clear thinking people to set up models that can be easily replicated. This is what I mean about the importance of imagination. Once we can see how it can be done, then we can get on with organising it.

                    • weka

                      Also, if there are restrictions on landlord sales, there's going to be a huge temptation to find ways around the restrictions (a bit like all of the ways around Muldoon's rent freeze in the 1980s).

                      What kind of ways around?

                      A simple way is for another family member to 'buy' the rental property, and then lease it to the family member who wants it. Technically, no change in the 'rental' status, but practically the same as owner-occupier purchase.

                      Depends on whether they intend to maximise capital gains, and whether they intend to use high rents to generate income.

                      A government policy to "shift rentals out of the investor class" is, I think, politically unsaleable to the NZ electorate.

                      Yeah, but that's probably because you're looking at worst case or bad designs that I'm not suggesting.

                      Recent research showed a very large number of NZers want house prices to drop, and a big chunk of those want them to drop a lot, so I think the electorate would respond to creative and clearly communicated initiatives atm.

                      I don’t however believe that Labour are the people to do that, it’s not their forte. It needs to be driven by people that get it.

                    • Belladonna

                      Depends on whether they intend to maximise capital gains, and whether they intend to use high rents to generate income.

                      It doesn't actually matter from the perspective of the net-loss to the rental system.

                      And 'depends' issues result in massive bureaucracy and/or avoidance as each one is litigated. We're already seeing this in the shift to 10-years for the bright line test, with variability depending on when/how much of the time a property has been rented (anecdata from a friend in the IRD)

                      Before the IRD got involved, it was really typical for families to rent out to family members for reduced rentals. IRD perceived this (probably correctly) as a tax avoidance measure (effectively resulting in a 'loss' against the property).

                    • Belladonna

                      KO, local govt, NGOs that do have funding, Iwi, Community Land Trusts, co-operatives, private buyers or organisations that are willing to commit to keeping the property out of the property market for a longer period of time and to accept rent caps.

                      Realistically, I don't see any of the above having the capital to do this on any substantial scale. And, Local government, at least, are generally trying to divest themselves of community housing (and finding few buyers – KO and NGOs aren't interested).

                      While many NZers – especially those who bought houses 10 years or more ago, and don't have large mortgages – are would welcome a gentle downwards trend on house prices. I don't see that this proposal would in any way achieve this.

                      Realistically, we have an under-supply of houses for our population. [Setting aside these reported ghost houses]

                      The only thing which can fix this is building more accommodation (in multiple flavours – including tiny homes). I do see that the various bodies doing sustainable renting (KO, NGOs, etc.) have a role to play in adding to the housing stock – but driving up prices (if KO wins the auction, by definition the price is higher than it would have been for the next-lowest bid); or mandating sales at a lower price, is not a vote winner.

                      Also the current headlines about the appalling situation with KO refusing to evict socially disruptive/criminal tenants – does them no favours in encouraging the rest of NZ to believe that the government is a responsible landlord

            • weka 13.1.2.4.1.2

              Every auction I've been to in the last 18 months (just locally in our neighbourhood – tire kicking to see what's happening) – has had 8-10 potential owner-occupiers seriously interested. There's a long way to go before that need/desire is mopped up by new builds.

              The problem Labour has is that its central premise is daft. Building houses for the private market will push prices up long before we get enough houses for there to be an excess. There are of course a lot of ways around that, and they all start with values. If you centre homes and families instead of the investor classes, then the solutions roll out in front of you.

              For instance, they could regulate the emerging tiny home sector in favour of people that want to live in tiny homes. This takes a big pressure off rentals and increases the pool of homes available. Building a TH is quick and easy and can easily be done to standards. The govt and local govt need to get together and resolved the land rental issues that go with that. That's not happening in a good way, because too many people lack the imagination to know what to do. And because our values are still around things other than people.

              • Belladonna

                I'd see the tiny homes as being more of a small town/city thing? Or outer edges of big cities. There simply isn't the land available for them in larger cities – Auckland, for example, has already been heavily subdivided for infill housing for the last 40 years – there's little free space available. [NB: this is also an issue for intensification – instead of having to buy (and have willing sellers) of, say, 3 properties, in order to put up an apartment/town house development; potential developers now have to buy 8-10 – which is exponentially harder/more expensive.

                In my local suburb, solidly middle class Auckland (I bought there 30 years ago – couldn't afford to, today) – we're seeing sleepouts being added to already-tiny back gardens – and consequent run-off issues getting worse. So not a great ecological solution.

      • tsmithfield 13.1.3

        From what I have heard from the government, they seem to realise that rent controls are a stupid idea, as is reinforced by a lot of evidence, and economists.

        For instance this article on the topic in "Stuff"the other day:

        Or as is the case in Holland where social housing makes up most of the rentals, and rent controls are part of the mix. People have to wait up to seven years for a rental there:

        https://www.expatica.com/nl/housing/renting/renting-a-property-in-the-netherlands-102925/

        https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/homed/renting/124995569/explainer-what-are-rent-controls-and-would-they-actually-make-things-better-for-renters

        From the article:

        "Economist Shamubeel Eaqub​ agrees that rent controls might have the unintended effect of slowing down supply for the rental market.

        “It seems like a deceptively simple thing to do: just stop rents rising and everything will be fine,” Eaqub said. “But it isn’t that simple, there are known consequences.

        “It means that we are likely to have fewer new rentals. Look at San Fransisco or New York: the people who got rent-controlled flats, it was great for them. But slowing the supply of rental housing is bad for anyone else who tried to live in those places.”''

        Or, in Holland, where social housing makes up a large percentage of rentals, and rent controls are in the mix, and where people have to wait up to seven years for a rental:

        “Renting in the Netherlands is common among both locals and expats. Around 40% of Dutch people rent their homes. The country has a high level of social housing, with housing associations owning around 75% of rental properties.

        Rents are assessed and controlled for low-value properties, and in some areas there are restrictions on who is allowed to live where, giving priority to those with a strong connection to the area, such as having been born there, having family in the area, or working nearby.”

        https://www.expatica.com/nl/housing/renting/renting-a-property-in-the-netherlands-102925/

        https://nltimes.nl/2021/04/24/7-year-waiting-list-get-social-rental-home-quarter-dutch-municipalities

        • Blazer 13.1.3.1

          Countries have rent caps…that are aligned with C.P.I and or inflation.

          They make perfect sense.

          Often the culprit when it comes to rent hikes is property managers who get a cut….not the owners.

        • weka 13.1.3.2

          "Economist Shamubeel Eaqub​ agrees that rent controls might have the unintended effect of slowing down supply for the rental market.

          This strikes me as an odd argument. Why did supply slow down? Regulate that as well.

          Besides, from your link,

          But the Green Party’s Chlöe Swarbrick believes it wasn’t the controls themselves which caused these problems.

          “If you look at a place like San Francisco where some people say rent controls have reduced housing supply, it’s actually the loopholes in the rent controls that have enabled landlords to move their buildings to other uses easily,” she said.

          When a landlord sells a property, it doesn't disappear (what economists call being fungible). It becomes the property of a homeowner, who may have been a renter before – not necessarily a bad outcome.

          • tsmithfield 13.1.3.2.1

            If it was a case that there was an endless circle where a landlord sells a house, a home owner buys that house and vacates their own house, the supply of houses would stay constant.

            But that isn't always the case. Quite often a house will be purchased by a couple like my son and his partner who were living with us up until purchasing their house.

            If the house that has been purchased is from a landlord who was renting to say a family of four, then the young couple, previously living with their parents, has just displaced a family of four.

            So, this is one reason why the reason why a reduction in rental supply can actually be a big problem.

            • weka 13.1.3.2.1.1

              But that situation only exists because we don't have enough houses available to be homes. The solution isn't to let landlords dictate rent rates (because that is a clear conflict of interest), but instead to create more low cost housing.

              And that shouldn't be building houses for the private market. If we want to get ahead of this, we have to build housing that isn't for speculation and investment. Social housing (central and local govt), Iwi and NGOs, community land trusts etc. This is the only way to stop house prices from rising.

              • Blazer

                ' This is the only way to stop house prices from rising.'

                Its definately…not.

                Stamp duties and levy's would stop them rising by lunchtime.

                • weka

                  yeah, sorry, should have been clearer. If we want housing to ever be affordable again, we have to increase the number of houses without adding them to the property market fire.

                  I doubt that stamp duties or levies would stop rises, but agree they would slow them.

  13. Ad 14

    Why doesn't Labour generate a bit of interest in Auckland local government and have a proper runoff event between Richard Hills and Efeso Collins?

    Politics abhors a vacuum, so get to it Labour before your lunch gets eaten.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/local-government/127676464/is-the-left-getting-left-behind-in-aucklands-mayoral-race

    We sure need a candidate for the left to rally around in Auckland right now.

    • Gypsy 14.1

      Labour are in danger of stuffing this up badly. Hills has been hand picked by Jacinda, in my opinion because she needs a puppet in the mayoral seat to get 3 Waters over the line. He's a lightweight who will get eaten alive by the toxic Auckland Council culture.

      • mac1 14.2.1

        It'a a bugger when your hand-picked puppet won't sit on your knee.

        Or maybe he wasn'r, and this is now a dead reckon, which is why you can't say "On cue'.

        Or in your pantomime is someone else directing the score?

        • Gypsy 14.2.1.1

          Hills was handpicked by Labour. He had Goff's backing, and had a campaign team in place. Then he appears to have lost his bottle. Collins will be laughing out loud.

          • mac1 14.2.1.1.1

            Crazy reckons all round, Gypsy.

            A young man dips his toe into the waters. Withdraws. Been there, done that. Nothing to do with 'bottle' or 'hand-puppeteering'.

            I find that people's reckons tell us more about them than their target. True of my time, too.

            Family reasons eventually predominated. But what my political opponents came up with…. well, some had obviously learnt their politics from some very unreasonable and vindictive people.

            • Gypsy 14.2.1.1.1.1

              He didn't 'dip his toes in'. He's been working on this for months, putting a team together. The indications are he's got cold feet at the thought of either a) facing down the council toxins, or b) facing off against Collins.

              • mac1

                So why is Collins laughing then, if he was no competition?

                • Gypsy
                  1. If he is the only serious Labour/left wing candidate, there will be far less vote splitting on the left.

                  2. If he is the only serious Labour/left wing candidate, he will receive more funding and ground support.

                  3. City Vision would likely have backed Hills over Collins. Hills is woke and malleable. Collins is principled and independent. CV are a powerful force in Auckland local politics.

                  4. The most obvious one – Hills was a serious contender, supported by the endorsement of both Labour and the sitting mayor. He's gone.

      • Stephen D 14.2.2

        So not handpicked by Jacinda, then.

        Efeso Collins will make a great mayor.

        • Gypsy 14.2.2.1

          Hills was handpicked by Jacinda. He had Labour's backing, and Goffs. He seems to have not had the intestinal fortitude.

        • Ad 14.2.2.2

          If Goff instead chooses to run, Efeso should have a crack anyway. He's going to need the practise.

    • Belladonna 15.1

      So the hard left propose socializing both cost and benefit; and the hard right propose privatising both cost and benefit.

      • Gypsy 15.1.1

        Theoretically that's correct, but in practice most (if not all) western economies find a balance somewhere in between. I'm a supporter of private enterprise, but understand full well that we elect governments to govern, to plan, to protect the citizenry, to take care of the poor and needy, and to regulate the excesses of the market.

    • Gypsy 15.2

      In fact there are many examples of precisely the opposite of what Shaw is saying. An example of socialising benefit is when wages increase and the government keeps the bracket creep. An example of privatising cost is the significant increase in public servants in recent years, paid for out of private sector taxes.

      • weka 15.2.1

        I think you missed his point. Maybe read or listen to the speech. He's talking about why we have the climate, eco, housing, poverty etc crises, that there is an underlying reason. He's not making a statement about all economic factors.

        • Gypsy 15.2.1.1

          I've listened to the speech. He specifically contrasts the economic response to the pandemic against conventional economics (his example is the debt to GDP ratio, but he's talking more broadly). His point, which he builds on, is that a new approach is required, and that is one of considerably more government intervention. I think he's off his trolley, but he can't be accused on ambiguity.

      • KJT 15.2.2

        You consider the public sector is, a cost?

        An often noted delusion of right wingers is that work done by the State sector is a "cost" born by business".

        The obvious example is State education. "A cost" when supplied by the State, and a benefit when the same work is done by a private company" is patently rediculous.

        Resources and a countries capabilities depend on the work of everyone. Employees, State or private, are not, "a cost".

        Soon, with essential workers, we will see again who are costs!

        • Gypsy 15.2.2.1

          "You consider the public sector is, a cost?"
          Ah, that's rather self evident. And when it comes to the spin doctors (who this government have increased by alarming numbers ) they are a wasted cost.

          • KJT 15.2.2.1.1

            "Self evident".

            I see where your lack of economic comprehension is coming from.

              • KJT

                Typical of right wingers.

                Failed accounting 101. A ledger has two sides.

                The "cost" of having State services is small, compared with the "cost" of not having them.

                In fact, pointless jobs are far more common in the private sector. Someone even wrote a book about it.

                If you consider State employed Teachers, Doctors, Health administrators, technicians, council staff, et al, a "cost" you are in cloud cockoo land. Their work contributes more value to our society and economy than most private business. In fact business couldn't survive without it. Try being in business without contract law.

                The problem with the State service is recent Governments tried to run it like a private business, rather than a service. Cutting out and privatising essential parts. A problem the right wing contempt for the State sector is entirely responsible for. The Mangerial cult has taken over. Sidelining the competent technocrats trhat used to run them.

                Funny the right wing insist we have to pay private sector managers a fortune to do their jobs. But oppose paying essential workers like Teachers and Hospital orderlies a decent wage.

                • Gypsy

                  "The "cost" of having State services is small, compared with the "cost" of not having them."

                  That isn't how accounting works.

                  The cost would be recorded as such:

                  Dr Cost

                  Cr Bank

                  That's money never to be seen again. So we should keep it to an absolute minimum. Meaning getting rid of all the PR spinners this government has added.

                • Belladonna

                  If you consider State employed Teachers, Doctors, Health administrators, technicians, council staff, et al, a "cost" you are in cloud cockoo land. Their work contributes more value to our society and economy than most private business.

                  The salaries paid for the various flavours of public servants are the cost. The resulting benefits of the essential work they do are shared across society. So an example of both costs and benefits being socialized – both sides of the ledger, as it were.

                  The problems arise when either the benefits fail to eventuate (dropping achievement standards in maths for example), or the costs increase for little or no benefit (spin doctors in the public service – to use Gypsy's example).

                  Of course, in all socialized services there are individual benefits as well (a good education is a privatized benefit to the student and/or their family, as well as being a general shared benefit across society).

                  But, as a general rule, when a socialized cost increases, the public should also look for an increased benefit to society.

                  Part of the issue with all of our western democracies is this mixing of socialized and privatized costs and benefits: e.g. when petrol goes up, it's not only a private cost; but, because the government charges taxes and levies on petrol, it's also a socialized cost – the government is gaining more revenue, but needs to show where this is being spent for the benefit of society.

  14. Stephen D 16

    From the sidebar. Gordon Campbell trying to make sense about the situation in the Ukraine.

    http://werewolf.co.nz/2022/02/gordon-campbell-on-the-crisis-what-crisis-over-ukraine/

    FWIW I still think Putin’s long game is to recreate pre 1914 Russia.

    https://nzhistory.govt.nz/media/photo/map-russian-empire-1914

    • lprent 16.1

      Quite readable from GC (I do wish that werewolf would put a https on their links).

      I don’t think that it likely that Putin is interested in doing the whole of pre-1914. Trying to control that number of ethnicities was a major headache for the tsarists and even more of an issue for a economy that is roughly the same size of New York city. The economies in Europe like Finland and the other baltic states plus Poland are rapidly growing and would be extremely hard to digest. Even the citizens of Ukraine appear to have no appetite for getting back in the rather anaemic Russian economy with its fragile oil state economy.

      All fertile grounds for widespread insurgency and guerrilla warfare.

      Putin was in East Germany as a intelligence officer when the Soviet Union was disintegrating. I’m pretty sure that he’d be aware of the futility of trying to hold a population used to a better standard of living that isn’t interested in being dominated by a foreign culture and political system.

  15. You are what your hat says at the protest at Parliament: Gun City

    Too many children are still there in the lines up near the front, including one on the shoulders of his mother…….makes me sad to see this. Concerned about getting the vaccination for your child but not concerned enough to keep them safe at the protest Even folk peacefully protesting have no guarantee that they will be safe, they cannot know the ideas of the leaders and ne'er do wells there Arp and Alpe and Counterspin. .

    • Shanreagh 17.1

      Good grief the beige brigade is there…….many guys wearing those unfortunate shirts reminiscent of the 1980s cricket supporters.

      • Ross 17.1.1

        If you don’t like beige, then look the other way lol

        As for the protest, let’s hope there are more this year. Terrible policies cannot be justified.

  16. Enough is Enough 18

    Winston looks like he might be trying to tap into the protest sentiment in Wellington. His tweets in the past 48 hours looks like he will be going after the anti-madate vote.

    Is there 5% in it for him?

  17. Just Saying 19

    https://youtu.be/7sF8rkSPDH8

    This is my favourite song on middle-class hypocrisy. It doesn't have the same impact as in the 80s when the Cambodian example of extreme collectivist uber-authoritarianism packed a real punch. I'm not sure if many remembers Pol Pot anymore.

    Is anyone getting why people are angry at the derision directed at everyday people trying to express themselves? At their frustration?

    I will reply to those who responded to my reply later, when I've lost some of this anger.

    I'm grateful if something was corrected to allow me to post again. Thankyou

    • Herodotus 19.1

      Not to forget that the band achieved some standing in 1981 for "appearing" in the NZ charts, with this song. Though it was never played on Ready to Roll for some reason 🤔

      https://nztop40.co.nz/chart/singles?chart=2965

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Jzdikbi9yE

    • Jimmy 19.2

      Yes I have that on vinyl along with some other albums of the Dead Kennedys.

    • gsays 19.3

      Middle class hypocricy you got it in one.

      "Is anyone getting why people are angry at the derision directed at everyday people trying to express themselves? At their frustration"

      Barking up the wrong tree, looking for empathy round this place. Too many elderly/retired, centrists, work from home, white collar professional types.

      Just a day or so, in an OP, tourism jobs that have been lost in the disruptions were dismissed as low wage positions that NZ was better off without. May be true, but those jobs belonged to people that were putting food on the table and shoes on the feet of their children. People that are hurting now.

      Sometimes the comfortable, authoritarian, righteous opinions expressed have you questioning what a socialist is nowadays.

      My favourite observation on middle class hypocricy comes from Frankie Boyle. 'If anything I say offends you, be sure to Tweet your outrage on a phone made by an 8 year old.'

      Kennedy's fun fact. When DKs were being prosecuted for obscenity by PMRC (Tipper Gore anyone?), the best witness they had was John Denver. He took apart the prosecution with his testimony concerning Rocky Mountain High.

      An article from those exciting times, so far removed from where we are now.

      https://faroutmagazine.co.uk/jello-biafra-dead-kennedys-ice-t-pmrc-oprah-winfrey-show-video/?amp

      • KJT 19.3.1

        "Ordinary people" are on the whole doing rather better at present.

        Unemployment down, wages on the rise and a whole bunch of shockingly poor employers having to up their game.

        The protesters are not "ordinary people". We are getting on with the job, with 100% of my essential workplace vaccinated, and masked and taking other precautions, where necessary.

        The “ordinary people” around me, with only one or two exceptions amoungst several hundred, consider the protesters a bunch of dangerous ignorant clowns.

  18. Blade 20

    Stewart Island community is now split. May I suggest to the store owner that when these big noting chicken littles find importing supplies from the mainland too much of a hassle and decide to go back to the store, you tell them to piss off.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/127541835/customer-backlash-for-grocery-store-owners-on-stewart-island

    Meanwhile, in my neck of the woods ,the local chemist who’s always been open 24/7 is closing on a Sunday. Why? They have lost six staff – two who decided to go back to India.

    And not far from the chemist is three upmarket flats. One which houses a JP I sometimes use for legal work. She is now looking for accommodation. Yeah, good luck with that.

    And talkback is now carrying ads for reasonably high end jobs.

    But the good news is we have a low Covid death rate.

    • But the good news is we have a low Covid death rate.

      The sheer ignorance and callousness of this statement leaves me breathless!

      Well, I'm sure Blade hasn't realised it yet, so let me be the first to point this out to him: dead people don't contribute much to the economy. They don't shop at H&Ms, they don't buy big macs or flat whites, they don't purchase petrol or take public transport.

      Nearly a million people in the USA have ceased contributing to the economy, over 100,000 in the UK and so on.

      So, for reasons well beyond the comprehension of Blade, the good news is that we have a low covid death rate!

      • Blade 20.1.1

        ''The sheer ignorance and callousness of this statement leaves me breathless!''

        Emotional nonsense the Left are well known for.

        ''Dead people don't contribute much to the economy. They don't shop at H&Ms, they don't buy big macs or flat whites, they don't purchase petrol or take public transport.''

        Neither do :

        1- The mentally ill.

        2- The unemployed.

        3- Businesses that have closed.

        4- People who can't wait to leave ''the cage.''

        5- People on the breadline.

        6- A new generation of under educated kids ( due to Covid and Lefty ideology).

        Anyone who can add to the list, please do.

        ''Nearly a million people in the USA have ceased contributing to the economy, over 100,000 in the UK and so on.''

        ''They can absorb those numbers better ( US has158 million workers). We can't in my opinion.''

        ''So, for reasons well beyond the comprehension of Blade, the good news is that we have a low Covid death rate!''

        What pisses me off with people like you is because I try to look at things in a reasonable unemotional way, I'm a heartless bastard.

        We have done all we can do to protect ourselves going forward. What else can we do? Carry on peeping from behind the curtain?

        • I'm a heartless bastard.

          We are in complete agreement!

          • Blade 20.1.1.1.1

            I’m sad to hear that, Tony. Enough said.

            • Tony Veitch (not etc.) 20.1.1.1.1.1

              Again, I'm sorry to have to point this out to you, but all of the above categories can be remedied. Death, on the other hand, tends to be a little more permanent.

              As the Nigerian PM said, early in the pandemic, and something RW fwits cannot grasp, -:

              "We know how to revive a dead economy, we've yet to learn how to revive a dead person."

              • Blade

                And again I cannot seem to get through to you that:

                A- A death count is only one vector of an overall Covid response.

                B- The indirect death toll over the coming years may be just be as high as if our government had taken a similar Covid response to other countries.

                C- Having no quality of life, or watching your business fail, is a living death.

                You say all the above categories can be remedied. That is true…but will they? Do we have the resources or the political will to do that?

        • Muttonbird 20.1.1.2

          I stopped in Ellerslie today after work. It was packed. Restaurants and bars full. First time I've been unable to find a park in two years.

          We are not peeping from behind the curtain.

          • Blade 20.1.1.2.1

            Good for you. If you are double vaxxed and maybe had a booster, go for it. You have done all you can for your health. There has to be a balance between caution and actually getting on with life.

            • Muttonbird 20.1.1.2.1.1

              Great, but I don’t like the way you are claiming, “we are hiding behind the curtain”.

              If you get out there you will see it's just not true.

        • KJT 20.1.1.3

          "A new generation of under educated kids ( due to Covid and Lefty ideology".

          In real life, not your RW fantasy world, "A new generation" of kids that currently have jobs "due to covid and lefty idealogy".

          1. As if the right wing ever cared about the "unproductive" mentally ill.

          2. Ditto unemployed. Which is way down in the real world, see above.

          3. Business closure rates overall are not greatly above normal. Some are not surprising in a pandemic. Countries with RW Governments have had the highest rates of business failures during covid.

          Don't the RW believe in Capitalism? "Businesses which are unprofitable should be allowed to fail" to make way for more efficent businesses". In fact, in Northland, building, and other businesses are doing much better than normal. Aucklanders are spending in NZ not overseas. Cafes are pretty full.

          4. "People who can't wait to leave the cage". Travel is a priveledge in normal times, only for a small proportion of New Zealanders. A fruit picker required to be available 365 days of the year on minimum wage, doesn't travel.

          5. People on the "breadline" has dropped. See unemployment.

          6. "Undereducated kids". Who now have jobs to aspire to! Nice to see local kids serving in local businesses and gaining apprenticeships. Spots that were formerly filled by backpackers, trained immigrants and temporary visa workers. Hell, the local growers have even had to offer minimum wage.

    • weka 20.2

      Stewart Island community is now split.

      hardly. Some of the community are pissed at a local business owner and acting accordingly. I don't think this is lightly done, but there may well be history.

  19. Ad 21

    With National and Labour now neck and neck, I want to see a true gamechanger budget out of Robertson in May.

    In New Zealand: New Opposition Leader Christopher Luxon boosts support for National to 35%; now ahead of Labour on 33% – Roy Morgan Research

    Show us you can do more than crisis.

    • alwyn 21.1

      "Show us you can do more".

      Where would you suggest that they start? I can't think of anything they have done except the pre-vaccine period of Covid 19 in the first part of 2020. Before March 2020 and since about October 2020 everything they have touched has turned to dross.

  20. Robert Guyton 22

    Pugh!

  21. McFlock 23

    So I recently opened the live feed – when the the Krishnas get deployed?

    Drums & cymbals, beige brigade… is this turning into a violent version of the rugby sevens?

  22. Puckish Rogue 24

    No reason except for awesome guitar playing:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GUBhE00h9U0

  23. Blade 25

    Two of my favourites. Campbell used to give guitar lessons to the stars.

  24. Blade 26

    Talkback has spoken. We want Kiri Allan to replace Nashy.

    Mikey on Nashy pulling the plug and hitting the road.

    https://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/on-air/mike-hosking-breakfast/video/mikes-minute-when-the-going-gets-tough-the-govt-runs-for-the-hills/

  25. Ad 27

    … and Councillor Richard Hills just cleared the path for Efeso Collins to run.

    Now we just need Goff to get his shit together.

    Or failing that, Efeso just runs against Goff anyway.

  26. Stephen D 29

    A very cross Bernard Hickey.

    https://thespinoff.co.nz/politics/10-02-2022/this-too-will-pass-says-ardern-of-the-anti-mandate-fury-but-will-it-really

    Can’t understand why the protesters have been handled so carefully.

    • Anne 29.1

      And Hickey has good reason to be cross.

      I was a target of criminal harassment on and off for 20 years. In my case it was covert and I had no idea who was responsible. I went to my Public Service bosses and they did nothing. I went to the police and they did nothing. I approached others for assistance and they also did nothing. It seemed like nobody cared. Years later I discovered the identity of the person responsible but still nobody did anything because by then… there had been too much water under the bridge.

      The damage done took me many years to overcome and I now know she also did the same sort of thing to other people but with less consistency. The over-all damage she caused was immense.

      The moral of the story:

      The powers-that-be allowed her to get away with the conduct and she therefore felt enabled to continue with impunity. And I see the same thing happening with these anti-vax/anti-mandate protesters. The more they are allowed to get away with, the more enabled they will feel, and the worse things could become.

      Nip it in the bud now before it is too late.

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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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