web analytics

Open mike 10/12/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 10th, 2011 - 88 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…

88 comments on “Open mike 10/12/2011”

  1. AnnaLiviaPlurabella 1

    The leadership vote should be open. if members attend these meetings and discuss it with their MP, then they the members should know how their MP voted. In this current contest we have the old machine that brought-about a 27% Party vote lobbying hard to retain their hold with a new handsome face: Shearer. The members who attended the Leadership Debates around the country have come out strongly endorsing Cunliffe. They are the ones who did the hard yakka that got us 35% of the Electorate vote. Cunliffe is the voice of the members and the one who is ready now to win in 2014. The members will hold their MPs to account.

    • logie97 1.1

      Of course the Nat’s media will trot out the line that Cunliffe is tainted, and damaged goods. (They would do well to examine just how many of the current line-up who are influencing the cabinet are Bulger/Shipley government mps.

  2. The two Davids have just done Dunedin, and in what may be a close vote the two Dunedin Labour MPs could have quite an influence on the outcome.

    “Dunedin North MP David Clark and Dunedin South MP Clare Curran will need to make a difficult decision on Tuesday when they decide who to support as the new leader of the Labour Party.”

    Clark and Curran may well be choosing the next Prime Minister of the country so it is an important decision for them.

    Choosing leadership is bigger than parochial interests, it’s of national importance, but it’s probably difficult to separate personal ambitions and looking for personal rewards.

    • Galeandra 2.1

      Guess you must have agonised and agonised over your decision in the Church of the Holy Follicle. Tell me, did you blow white smoke or black afterwards?

    • Colonial Viper 2.2

      So, who are the aspiring future leadership contenders for UF ?

      Choosing leadership is bigger than parochial interests, it’s of national importance, but it’s probably difficult to separate personal ambitions and looking for personal rewards.

      Perhaps you are referring to yourself here?

      • The Voice of Reason 2.2.1

        I imagine Pete’s leadership ambitions might be somewhat knackered by the final vote results. After all the lukewarm wibbly wobbly frothing from the Kiwibog candidate, I think we are going to find that he not only failed to do better in Dunners North than the last UF candidate, he has actually managed to drag the party vote down as well.
         
        If only PG had gone with Winston, eh? He’d be an MP now and given the NZF lineup of no marks, never were’s and numpties, Pete would have been a star!

        • Pete George 2.2.1.1

          It was a punt but no regrets.

          I’d never have tried to go with NZ First, don’t agree with enough of their policies or practiced. I trust Peter Dunne as a leader but not Peters.

          My ambitions haven’t been knocked by anything, they’re on track.

          • Colonial Viper 2.2.1.1.1

            My ambitions haven’t been knocked by anything, they’re on track.

            You personally aimed or expected for UF to get that low a result??? I can’t believe that.

            • Pete George 2.2.1.1.1.1

              No, UF list was a punt, the fickle winds blew the NZF way. Despite that UF still maintained it’s presence and influence in government, so while no improvement the overall result was holding ground.

              My aim in the Dunedin electorates is on target and looking promising. See the right hand article here.

              • pete, you always seemed a little desperate to me, what with all the blogging and comments. Maybe you should consider trying to get on TV as a political commentator or something – get a higher visible profile – nationally. have you ever thought about that?

                • I’m quietly determined, and no, getting on TV as a commentator doesn’t sound like it’ll get better democracy working in Dunedin.

                  • I think you’re being modest – you have built up a lot of skills and knowledge with all the interwebbing – that could be your angle in. You’ve shown an appitude for it – test it out in Dunners or maybe youtube – it might add to your profile and help you get better democracy working in Dunedin. Anyway just an idea, i’m sure you will do what you want and that is the way it should be.

              • millsy

                Might I suggest standing in the 2013 local body elections — either for the DCC or the ORC?

  3. Jenny 3

    Stop State Housing mass evictions in Glen Innes

    Protest March today, 12 Noon, Queen Street

    Meet at Britomart Centre

    10am Meet at Glen Innes Library, Line Road carpark and catch the train together into Britomart

    Contact Marion Peka; 021 123-9525

  4. marsman 4

    ‘We don’t need your charter schools’.    Facebook.
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/237491956316493/

    • Those that don’t need or want them don’t have to use them.

      That shouldn’t rule out those who do want them?

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.1

        useless but typical pro-choice argument which ignores charter schools as a blot on good educational sense.

      • prism 4.1.2

        @Pete G 8.31am – Charter schools are supposed to provide for lower income children with few options, and so such parents and children can’t decide not to use them, there is likely to be no other option for a school that is close and accessible. Taking the attitude that it is a matter of choice is just another RWNJ ideological slogan.

        If you are referring to educational planners, politicians etc who want them, one has to ask why and if on reliable, unbiased evidence to be sure that these schools are the best way of spending precious, diminishing money available for education.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.3

        Why would anyone want them when they’ve proven to be an overall failure?

        • Pete George 4.1.3.1

          If that was the case no one would want them, but they haven’t proven to be an overall failure, some have most have either been as good as or better than conventional schools.

          • Draco T Bastard 4.1.3.1.1

            About half are as good as the prevailing system so the added costs don’t improve anything. Nearly half have proven themselves worse than the prevailing system so all the added costs do is make things worse. A small number have proven themselves better.

            Overall, a failure. We could get better results in tweaking the prevailing system and it’d probably be cheaper.

  5. Symbolic of the attitude of entitlement of the managerial class and symbolic of the country National wants to produce………..I guess for some people there is such a thing as a free lunch (dinner).

    But not for those feckless workers who just wont do what they are told……

    “CMP Rangitikei, which has been involved in a bitter industrial dispute with workers after they refused to take a wage cut of up to 20 per cent, wined and dined 20 of its staff at award-winning restaurant Nero on Saturday, spending hundreds of dollars as employees on the picket line are turning to food banks to feed their families
    Link

    Follow the link above to add your opinion to the poll.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      Quoting article:

      “In hindsight, we should have waited until the situation at the plant has been resolved.

      “We’re sorry this happened and we’ll be more aware about this kind of thing in the future.”

      Translated: Well, now that you’ve pointed it out we understand that you’re upset and we won’t do this type of thing again – promise.

    • prism 5.2

      WJoyce – I added a comment about Rangitikei but nothing has gone up since 8 pm 9 December. So nothing happening on the Manawatu rag’s site at present.

  6. Molly Polly 6

    Shearer is unpretentious, sincere…an ordinary bloke. He has good intentions.

    But for the life of me I don’t understand why he agreed to put himself forward for leadership at this stage. My take on it is that the old guard in caucus persuaded him. They shoulder tapped Robertson as well. Two inexperienced politicians (fresh faces) to lead the old guard.

    I have been told by a very reliable source that Mallard is the person directing and leading this charge.

    I agree with ALP – Cunliffe has the backing of the members. He is experienced (but young in age), sharp, quick on his feet, competent. He is on the blocks, ready to go.

    We don’t need to wait for him to have a political/media makeover.

    His running mate is Mahuta. Inspiring choice.

    It’s a no brainer really.

    But I fear that the old guard have already stitched up a done deal…

    Lobby (email) all the LP MP’s you know, not just your local MP. As members that is all we can do. If they are part of the old guard, this is even more important. Tell them what you think even if they do not like it. Public opinion can be very persuasive.

    • Tigger 6.1

      Just done it – I am firmly Cunliffe-Mahuta now – been thinking deeply about this. Not an easy choice. But they sold me on Wednesday night. And anyone underestimating Nanaia’s ability as a deputy should be warned – I’ve seen her in action on the ground and she gets stuff done.

      But wow, having choices as good as these is a very, very good sign. Nats, you’ve got…who?

      • seeker 6.1.1

        Good on you for putting this idea out there MollyPolly and good one Tigger. Am ‘lobbying’ for Cunliffe and Mahuta too.

        • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1

          Anyone here who believes in the Cunliffe/Mahuta leadership combo….please email or call the office of your nearest Labour MPs…let them know exactly what you think and why.

          And do it before Tuesday morning 😛

  7. prism 7

    Background stuff on the British financial and journalistic soup at present. On Radionz this morning here.
    Kim Hill on Saturday
    8:15 Iain Overton
    Iain Overton is managing editor of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism in the UK. The Bureau, in association with The Independent newspaper, is currently publishing an undercover investigation into the activities of Bell Pottinger, one of Britain’s top lobbying firms.
    Get over there and listen.

    My unreliable report on info. The BIJ has only been going for 18 months but had 30 front page stories. Lately they have been looking at the revolving door of politicians to lobby firms. 45% of retired pollies go to such firms with their knowledge of people and the maze of power. Then they manipulate for clients benefit. Many are despotic countries that need to counteract the dreadful data about them.
    Then the moneyed classes and their ability to manipulate government which is illustrated this morning in Cameron’s statement as to Britain standing back from all other Euro countries group decision to help stability of their financial system.

  8. ianmac 8

    How to have fun when facing eviction in Melbourne if you are one of the “Occupy Melbourne group.” Wonder if the Auckland group will do this? Police action a far cry from LA overkill.

  9. newsense 9

    John Pagani. head in hands.

    “He will change Labour’s tone. With Shearer we will hear more about Labour’s vision for being the party of New Zealanders’ hopes and aspirations, not just tearing down the other guy.”

    Wait, hang on, didn’t I read just a second before….

    “When we watched the rivals debate on TV we saw a contrast between Shearer’s authenticity, and his rival’s tendency to use words like “complementarity”.”

    I’m confused- is Pagani trying to position Shearer as George W. Bush??? Authenticity is equal to restricting your vocabulary? What a completely bizarre attack.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10772186

    Nothing against Shearer, I like the guy though I don’t know how he’d plan to lead Labour yet. Voted for him.

    But if this is going to be his team it is the complete opposite of the public spin- Pagani isn’t some new fresh faced idealist disconnected from the past any more than John Key is Obama.

    Labour was just beginning to get some momentum at the end of the election campaign. AFTER two years of achieving very very little.

    I thought there was a lot of vision at the last election. I hope that the first statement isn’t code for changing to empty words and neglecting the excellent and popular policy prepared for the last election. It was going to be an enormous ask to win. Let’s not throw out the baby with the bath water.

    • I agree.  I found it hard to reconcile Pagani’s glowing testimonial of Shearer with what was happening.  Particularly the suggestion that Shearer represents a break from the past.  If the rumor is true and Pagani will be offered the chief of staff position under Shearer then nothing would have changed except the person at the top.  

      And if this was all arranged at Hooton’s barbecue then I am concerned. 

      Of course if this rumor is not true Pagani can say so. 

      • just saying 9.1.1

        Pagani is the kiss of death for Labour. If the caucus hasn’t learned that soft blue with a red neck isn’t the answer, they deserve what’s coming.
        Maybe it’s inevitable anyway?

        • prism 9.1.1.1

          Soft blue with a red neck, sounds like the kiss of death. Hope not.

        • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1.2

          It was Pagani that resulted in Labour being an ineffectual opposition for most of the last term. Following his advice truly would be the kiss of death. Even now I can see Labour splitting in two – again – as the neo-liberals head one way and the rest head another.

          • prism 9.1.1.2.1

            DTB
            If the addicts can’t break from their free market/ modish right wing addiction then it is inevitable that the committed Labourites will have to move off or just waste time in endless unresolvable discussion.

  10. There is something rotten in the state of Christchurch (aka Feudal Lands of the Prince of Whales).
    There are jobs for the family….
    $75 dollars an hour + expenses for the family members of EQC.
    Then there are jobs for the old boys club….
    Two former city councillors, Mike Wall and Norm Withers, have been working as EQC assessors at $4500 a week each. A year’s salary at that rate would put them on a similar remuneration as a Cabinet minister.” – The Press
    There are jobs for an Australian recruiting company….
    An Australian private investigation company is making at least $33,000 a week as its margin for supplying staff to the Earthquake Commission (EQC)”The Press
    The jobs pay extremely well….
    The salary bill for the 74 Verifact supplied staff is at least $333,000 a week, or $17.3 million a year.” – the Press
    I wonder if CERA has a similar story. We know Jenny Shipley got a sweetheart deal when she is paid several times the cabinet-set rate (and Gerry lied about).
    The jobs are easy to come by…provided you know somebody….
    EQC appointments without interviews. (apparently they have jobs as “Pod Leaders” – are they here to steal our bodies?).
     
    Meanwhile….

    Predicted (but ignored by National) housing and rental bubble eventuates while Gerry sits at the top table feeding his face and doing fuck all.
     
    While fellow NZdrs who are not on $75 an hour, or are not ex-city council members, Australians, or have family members in EQC, are doing it hard 
     
    People not only have to fear earthquakes but have to fear the dictatorial powers of CERA

  11. joe90 11

    An interesting NYT article on the future of education.

    Death Knell for the Lecture: Technology as a Passport to Personalized Education

  12. dv 12

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10772168

    An interesting article about charter schools.

    One factor I have not seen anywhere is what happened when (if) the charter school goes broke?

  13. joe90 13

    Objective of OLA: Separation of Wealth and State

    A major objective of OLA is to achieve the separation of wealth and state and to redress and resolve grievances related to the abuse of economic power. The current situation has merged wealth and state so that he who has the gold makes the rules. Wealth is the new sovereign as private corporate banks and large corporations have a dominating influence on our government. Excessive and unaccountable concentration of economic power in the hands of the very few has fueled massive system-wide corruption and fraud and has allowed the system itself to be structured in favor of the 1%

  14. On the day we read that Cameron (friend of our beloved leader) takes on the EU Zone to protect the City of London financiers and Banksters from EU regulation, we read….

    Dave Hartnett, 60, will step down as the permanent secretary for tax next summer, a spokesman said . He will leave with a pension pot worth £1.7m.
    Hartnett has admitted that his organisation made “a mistake” when he shook hands on a deal to excuse the US bank Goldman Sachs from paying around £10m in interest charges. His organisation has also been accused of allowing Vodafone off interest charges of more than £1bn. – The Guardian

     
    Mean while, the whistleblower, Osita Mba, is facing disciplinary charges and possible criminal charges.
     
    [cue Louis Armstrong singing “What a wonderful world”]
    So…..again…. the banksters get off….the friend of banksters gets to retire on big bucks (and probably a job in the finance sector)…..and the only person with integrity gets shafted…..
    [fade to black]
     

  15. Draco T Bastard 15

    Europe’s disastrous summit

    And yet, inevitably, another half-baked solution is exactly what we got. Which means, I fear, that it is now, officially, too late to save the Eur ozone: the collapse of the entire edifice is now not a matter of if but rather of when.

    Of course, in the real world, it was always a matter of when and not if.

    The fundamental problem is that there isn’t enough money to go around.

    Plenty of money – all they have to do is print it or cancel all debt. Of course, the banksters are trying to prevent either of those from happening so that they can get even more wealth from the European communities.

    The collapse of the Euro was pretty much a foregone conclusion due to the simple fact that we’re using a delusional and corrupt socio-economic system. Hopefully, the world remembers this time and stops capitalism from becoming the ruling religion in the future.

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      The collapse of the Euro was pretty much a foregone conclusion due to the simple fact that we’re using a delusional and corrupt socio-economic system. Hopefully, the world remembers this time and stops capitalism from becoming the ruling religion in the future.

      Unfortunately I suspect that TPTB are going to ante up, not give up.

      • Draco T Bastard 15.1.1

        I’m expecting war and lots of it. TPTB will do what they think is necessary to protect their privilege and everyone else will be the ones paying for it.

  16. I am a doomer but I tend to shy away from the cliff megaquickdeath scenario. Maybe I just can’t front up but the Archdruid’s analysis always rings true for me. I want to thank AFKTT for the various links he puts up, I enjoy Nature Bats Last and the videos of Guy.

    I have particuarily impressed with the last post from the Archdruid – this is the last paragraph but the interconnectedness of his arguement has to read in full to be fully appreciated. The arbitrage aspect of industrial economy is particuarily interesting as I hadn’t thought about it like that before.

    “I have begun to suspect that this will turn out to be one of the most crucial downsides of the arrival of peak oil. If the industrial economy, as I’ve suggested, was basically an arbitrage scheme profiting off the difference in cost between energy from fossil fuels and energy from human laborers, the rising cost of fossil fuels and other inputs needed to run an industrial economy will sooner or later collide with the declining cost of labor in an impoverished and overcrowded society. As we get closer to that point, it seems to me that we may begin to see the entire industrial project unravel, as the profits needed to make industrialism make sense dry up. If that’s the unspoken subtext behind the widening spiral of economic dysfunction that seems to be gripping so much of the industrial world today, then what we’ve seen so far of what peak oil looks like may be a prologue to a series of wrenching economic transformations that will leave few lives untouched.”

    http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com/2011/12/what-peak-oil-looks-like.html

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      As we get closer to that point, it seems to me that we may begin to see the entire industrial project unravel, as the profits needed to make industrialism make sense dry up. If that’s the unspoken subtext behind the widening spiral of economic dysfunction that seems to be gripping so much of the industrial world today,

      Shit JMG is good.

      You can see this all around NZ. Places are run until the plant and machinery wear out, and when all the capital is finally run down and the profits aren’t enough to justify renewing the plant, the place is shut down. The aluminium smelter in bluff is on this course right now.

      IMO this is why western capitalists from the early 80’s onwards focussed on building up the financial economy, and let the industrial economy decline. The kinds of real-economy railway and oil profits common in the first 2/3 of the century were becoming harder and harder to achieve, but easy to get by mathematically gaming the financial markets.

      • Tiger Mountain 16.1.1

        Thats right, the importance of finance capital compared to ‘productive’ capital (that makes stuff or provides services) has zoomed up since Karl Marx and Engel’s day. But the tendency for the rate of profit to fall, and the concentration of ownership and control in ever fewer hands continues.

      • marty mars 16.1.2

        True mate

        It is interesting to consider the reversal from mechanical to people as exploited cheap labour forces associated costs down. We close something here because it can be made cheaper there, but the whole artifice is collapsing. The forces are stretched and under too much tension, it won’t take much for something to become the straw that did so much damage to that camel.

        • Colonial Viper 16.1.2.1

          Indeed. We can’t import deflation in the form of cheap foreign made products and then think that we can get away without also importing the lower wages and worse working conditions which produced them.

          Also agree that interwoven and interlocking layers of complexity in the system make it very very fragile.

    • joe90 16.2

      Thanks for that MM but the optimism that a beautiful Saturday bought has just gone out the window.

  17. Bomber Bradbury is calling Waitakere for Carmel Sepuloni and indicates the Greens will pick up a seat at the expense of National.  If this is true today is a wonderful day.

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      When are the official results coming out? Waiting…

    • alwyn 17.2

      You may think so but I doubt if Raymond Huo is going to agree.
      If Burns gets up in ChCh I imagine Rajen Prasad will be equally unhappy.

      • mickysavage 17.2.1

        Acknowledged.  It is a good day in that an electorate seat is so vital and a good day that National has now lost its absolute majority but commiserations to Raymond and possibly Rajen.  I expect there will be retirements during the term and I am sure they will be back.

    • weka 17.3

      Nats down one, Greens up one!

      • weka 17.3.1

        Bennett lost Waitakere and Sepuloni is in. By 11 votes. It would have been several hundred more if the Greens hasn’t stood someone in that seat.

        • stephen 17.3.1.1

          And Brendon Burns loses to Wagner by 45 votes and the Green candidate got 2 323. Sigh. He’s been a brilliant hard working electorate MP here, a real loss to Christchurch. Such a shame.

          • gingercrush 17.3.1.1.1

            All the more need for Proportional vote in electorates.

          • prism 17.3.1.1.2

            The Greens can’t afford to play round with voting, standing aside, directing votes to Labour – they need to keep pressing on building their vote, support and finances. Labour showed it couldn’t be trusted to stick to its knitting in 1984, that hand-made stuff was old hat, too working class. Labour moved up in the world to make a world fit for lawyers and professionals with liberal leanings especially towards themselves.

            So don’t mourn Greenies taking votes – it shows that some people are still trying and working for a New Zealand that has good values of community, environment etc. A safety net for the country after the misbegotten policies of Labour high-flyers.

        • Vicky32 17.3.1.2

          It would have been several hundred more if the Greens hasn’t stood someone in that seat.

          That’s why another Green seat is not good news! I absolutely don’t trust the Greens…

  18. ianmac 18

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10772238
    Results of Special Votes. Bennett loses by 11 votes.

    • weka 18.1

      A bit of a worry with the judicial recount.

      • Colonial Viper 18.1.1

        I reckon Waitakere was counted very very very carefully after preliminary results came out on Nov 26. So would be surprised if the result changed.

  19. Hilary 19

    OK Nats now 47.3% and two support party MPs with less than 2% between them. So not a mandate. Now what happens if there is a by-election in either Ohariu or Epsom?

    • gingercrush 19.1

      National or a partner of National would need to win the electorate. Its my understanding that in such an instance, National could put a candidate in that electorate and win without it affecting the rest of their MPs. And as Epsom is a right-wing electorate they’ll get it. I also believe when Dunne retires Ohariu will become a National seat.

      • gingercrush 19.1.1

        Though there is the Maori party and I expect National and the Maori party to resign a confidence & supply agreement. National will actually need to do more negotiations on passing of legislation this electorate term than last tme.

        • lprent 19.1.1.1

          I wish that they would resign before they do agree to a new one..

          National need it, however I’m unsure the Maori party do. So far agreements with the National party just seem to be sending them to the trash of history. On the other hand the news today will probably give them the leverage to get more baubles before retirement.

        • Vicky32 19.1.1.2

          and the Maori party to resign a confidence & supply agreement.

          You mean ‘re-sign’, lol! Yes, they will, because they’re idiots… 🙁

  20. gingercrush 20

    Brendon Burns has lost Christchurch Central and Paula Bennett lost Waitakere. Mojo Majors is in for the Greens. Raymond Huo is out due to Sepuloni getting back in. I think the CHCH East guy is out for Nats.

  21. Hilary 21

    And the election of Mojo Mathers will also be a great boost to our third official language, NZ Sign. Congratulations.

    • kriswgtn 21.1

      +1 totally agree

    • alwyn 21.2

      Why will it have any effect on New Zealand sign language?
      I know it is an official language but will Parliament put in a full time translator there to turn everything said by the other MPs into sign language for the benefit of Mathers?
      Please note. I am NOT suggesting a deaf person shouldn’t be there. I am simply curious as to whether sign language will be brought in for all parliamentary business.

      • Southernrata 21.2.1

        Mojo herself lipreads and doesn’t sign as her native language, as she was schooled in a different system. So the signing would be symbolic, but quite justified, I think.

        • Hilary 21.2.1.1

          Very hard to lipread in the parliamentary environment. But she is a Deaf person and NZSL is theoretically the language that NZ Deaf people identify as their first language.There is a te reo translator in parliament at all times so I would expect there also to be NZSL available. Because there are not many of them this could mean two positive outcomes
          -a boost to training for more NZSL interpreters
          -others making the effort to learn as it is such an appealing and useful language.

          • ropata 21.2.1.1.1

            i learned the sign for “parachute”, wonderfully expressive!

          • Vicky32 21.2.1.1.2

            -others making the effort to learn as it is such an appealing and useful language.

            Useful, yes, appealing – no! I learned some sign when I worked for IHC, and while doing the disabilities course at UofA in 1999-2000. NZSL is in reality, jolly difficult for people like me, with visual issues!

  22. RedBaron 22

    And a good % in favour of MMP. Note the MMP %’s in the Maori seats. North of 80%.

  23. willie maley 24

    You would think that a cabinet minister losing her electorate seat would lead the news, but not on TV3.

  24. Afewknowthetruth 25

    mm.

    ‘I have particuarily impressed with the last post from the Archdruid’

    Greer got quite a hammering from the Natrure Bats Last group a couple of years ago because his time frame for collapse was ludicrous -he was talking in terms of hundreds of years- and his failure to respond didn’t impress anyone.

    ‘John Michael Greer is stunningly learned, with a strong grasp of history and philosophy. So it surprises me that he borrows his online name, without acknowledgment, from the original archdruid (the presiding official at the National Eisteddfod of Wales) and the best-known archdruid in memory (the great conservationist David Brower). And yes, I know he’s the grand archdruid … but still. Although Greer is a doomer, he’s a half-hearted and unfunny one, constantly seeking the “middle way.” As I’ve indicated previously, there’s no half-way with economic contraction and global climate change. According to recent climate projections, we either complete the ongoing collapse in the very near future, or we run out of habitat for humans by mid-century. The notion that we can power down relatively smoothly, over a span of three centuries, is ludicrous. The Long Descent is a fine title, but a terrible idea. So, I give Greer an ironic mid-range score of 5 on the doomer front. Because of his measured approach, it’s difficult for me to evaluate Greer’s level of gloominess, so I won’t try. With respect to controlling the message on his blog, I score him a solid and unimpressive 8, in part because he moderates every comment. Of course, we cannot know what he edits out, but I know he’s purposely deleted comments when a reader sought clarification on issues raised by Greer. Why? What’s the point of claiming to conduct an online conversation if you’re so concerned about rogue comments that you don’t let them into the discussion? All in all, Greer is a great student and also a great teacher, at least for the American system of education (i.e., K-12 concentration camps). But I hate to take a class from somebody who thinks he has all the answers.’

    http://guymcpherson.com/2009/12/fear-and-loathing-in-the-blogosphere-doom-gloom-and-controlling-the-message/

    I have never engaged on Greer’s site but apparently he suffers from radio-talkback-host syndrome.

    I’ve been a bit suspicious of the druid aspect for quite a while. Sure, the Sun is the source of all useful wealth on this planet but actually dressing up in fancy clothes…?

    On the matter of the really big one, it used to be mostly concerned individuals outside the system who gave dire warnings of what is to come. Now the warnings are coming from within the belly of the beast:

    ‘In parallel, the International Energy Agency (IEA), which advises the rich countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), issued an unusually stark warning in its latest flagship report, the 2011 World Energy Outlook. According to the IEA, we have no more than five years to reverse business-as-usual and avoid catastrophic and irreversible climate change.’

    http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2011-12-09/mali-frontline-climate-change

    This follows on from the IEA admission last year that Peak Oil had occured over 2005-6.

    The disconnect between reality and what politiicans (of all persuasions) are saying gets greater by the day.

    At this stage I still postulate that TPTB will do whatever is necessary to hold the system together until after the London Olympics. Once they are over, don’t be at all surprised to see rapidly increasing amounts of brown stuff hitting the rotating device throughout most of the world.

    • marty mars 25.1

      Thanks for that afktt

      Reads like guy had a few issues with him, as obviously do you.

      I’m happy to trust my own judgement based on my reading – like the post I linked to above, and any of his other ones. If I am proved wrong – so be it.

  25. Jenny 26

    The Rena disaster

    Contracting out disaster response

    Before the evacuation of the crew, before the loss of power, and before the break up of the ship in a storm, the grounded Rena sat on the Astrolab reef for four days.

    Documents released to the Herald under the OIA, suggest legal niceties over liability were behind Maritime New Zealand’s refusal to act during the four day window of calm weather that followed the grounding.

    Until the bad weather hit, the crew were still on board, and the ship’s systems were still operational, The pitch of the ship was not extreme and all the containers were intact and safely lashed in place. All the conditions which would have greatly aided the swift and efficient removal of the oil load. All these conditions were missing when the oil removal began in earnest after the weather was clear again.

    Svitzer Salvage who were contractually charged with responding to such disasters, only ran a store front presence in New Zealand. In fact the company who Svitzer list as their local bunkering provider, Adsteam Bunker Services (NZ) Ltd. had been struck off the New Zealand register of companies.

    When the disaster struck Svitzer Salvage did not have the needed resources and personal on the ground locally, having to marshall them from overseas.
    During this time Maritime New Zealand, which had the ability and resources to act immediately, stood idly by.

    The question that has to be answered is this:

    Were Maritime New Zealand who were the agency on the spot with the resources at hand, prevented from taking action to remove the oil from the damaged ship, by contractual red tape that handed over all executive decisions to an overseas based sub-contractor.

    • Colonial Viper 26.1

      The main issue being a total lack of leadership within the organisation and from within the National Government.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Shy Labour Voters?
    In previous elections pollsters have bemoaned the 'shy Tory' - the respondent who is so fearful of being judged as a cruel and heartless bastard by an anonymous pollster, or their spouses, workmates and friends, that they lie about their intention of voting Conservative, skewing the poll figures in Labour's ...
    54 mins ago
  • Seven reasons to be wary of waste-to-energy proposals
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz I was in Switzerland recently and discovered that they haven’t ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 hours ago
  • Reviewing the whitewash
    Back in 2015, then Ombudsman Beverley Wakem conducted a review of the OIA, Not a game of hide and seek. The "review" was a whitewash, which found no need for legislative change, and instead criticised the media and requesters - which destroyed Wakem's reputation, and undermined that of the Office ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    9 hours ago
  • You Gov MRP Poll Out
    So, You Gov's MRP poll - the weird one that tries to reflect what will happen at a constituency level and which pretty much nailed the hung parliament in 2017 - is not looking too good for Labour:
    UK #GE2019 MRP seat projection:CON: 339 (-20)LAB: 231 (+20)SNP: 41 (-2)LDEM: 15 ...
    9 hours ago
  • Climate Change: Accountability?
    We've known about climate change for over forty years now,and it has been a major political issue for twenty. And yet fossil fuel companies have kept polluting with impunity, while government have looked the other way and twiddled their thumbs and refused to do anything because "the economy", or just ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    9 hours ago
  • Delusional And Irrational: The Rise Of Paranoid Politics In New Zealand.
    Sheer Loopiness: Many of those expressing bemusement at the antics of these #turnardern effacers, were convinced that they were yet another expression of the National Party’s increasingly spiteful anti-government propaganda campaign. They marvelled at the oddness of the perpetrators’ mindset and questioned the common-sense of allowing the rest of New Zealand ...
    11 hours ago
  • Things to know about Whakaari/White Island
    Brad Scott, GNS Science VolcanologistThis post was originally published by GeoNet. Following the 9 December devastating eruption at Whakaari/White Island we have put together some information about the island. New Zealand’s most active volcano Whakaari/White Island is currently New Zealand’s most active volcano, it has been since an eruptive episode ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 day ago
  • Status quo supports status quo
    The Justice Committee has reported back on its Inquiry into the 2017 General Election and 2016 Local Elections, with a host of recommendations about how to improve our electoral systems. Some of their recommendations are already incorporate din the Electoral Amendment Bill currently before Parliament, but there's also a recommendation ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • The Greens abandon NeoLiberalism
    Back in 2017, in order to make themselves "electable" in the eyes of rich people who oppose everything they stand for, the Greens signed up for NeoLiberalism, adopting a restrictive set of "Budget Responsibility Rules" which basicly prevented them from using government to make things better. Now, they're finally abandoning ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Lying about a failed war
    Since invading in 2001, the US has consistently claimed that their war in Afghanistan has been going well, even when it continued year after year after year. Of course, they were lying, and thanks to the Washington Post and the US Freedom of Information Act, we get to see just ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Artificial Intelligence and You
    How should we think about artificial intelligence and the implications that it has for our work and leisure? There are many articles on artificial intelligence and its potential impacts on jobs, and the ethics of applications. These are important topics, but I want to focus on some less discussed aspects, ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 day ago
  • Statistical manipulation to get publishable results
    I love data. It’s amazing the sort of “discoveries” I can make given a data set and computer statistical package. It’s just so easy to search for relationships and test their statistical significance. Maybe relationships which ...
    1 day ago
  • More lies on the Twitter (Dan Hodges edition)
    The other big story concerning Leeds Hospital is Boris Johnson's bizzare behaviour at Leeds Hospital, where he was confronted by a journalist and challenged about a four year old boy with suspected pneumonia who was left sleeping on the floor, rather than getting  abed like a sick kid would in ...
    2 days ago
  • LabourActivistPunchedMattHancock’sSPADGate
    So, for a brief period of history, it was alleged that a protester had punched Matt Hancock's SPAD (not a euphemism; special adviser) when Hancock visited Leeds Hospital.This was reported by the likes of Robert Peston and Laura Keunssberg, as well as the less credible Guido Fawkes.  It also quickly ...
    2 days ago
  • France’s anti-Zionism is anti-liberté
    by Daphna Whitmore Last week France passed a law that equates anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. It is based on a definition of anti-Semitism that includes criticism of Israel such as: “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 days ago
  • Another bus lockout
    Over the past year we've seen major bus problems in Hamilton and Wellington, as drivers have sought better wages and an end to the bullshit of split shifts, which basicly see them "married to the job". And now its Auckland's turn. When NZBus's drivers planned low-level strike action of not ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Showing us how its done
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. But those targets are insufficient. Meanwhile, Denmark is showing us how its done:Denmark’s parliament adopted a new climate law on Friday, committing to reach 70% below its 1990 emissions in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Public sector dysfunction should not be allowed to undermine freedom of information
    Another day, another piece of legislation with a secrecy clause. This time its the innocuous-seeming Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill, which (after establishing a new body and making it subject to the OIA in three different ways) includes the rapidly-becoming-standard clauses enabling it to request information from other public ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • “This is England, this knife of Sheffield steel…”
    The state of the United Kingdom is fractured, torn up, shredded. The Empire is gone, it died a long time ago. And yet, the country is still tracking with a lead in favour of the ones who play to the ingrained, class-bound division for political gain. It is a disgrace ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    4 days ago
  • CORSIA, coming soon to an airport near you
    On 27 September, Greta Thunberg addressed a crowd of 500,000 at the School Strike for Climate in Montreal, saying: “You are a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And Sweden is also a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And in both cases, it means absolutely nothing. Because ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    4 days ago
  • Cloaking hate speech and fake news in the right to free expression.
    It should be obvious by now but let’s be clear: The same folk who regularly traffic in disinformation, misinformation and “fake news” are also those who most strongly claim that their freedom of expression rights are being violated when moves are made to curb hate speech (as opposed to protected ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • The Physics (and Economics, and Politics) of Wheelchairs on Planes
    Michael Schulson When Shane Burcaw flies on an airplane, he brings along a customized gel cushion, a car seat, and about 10 pieces of memory foam. The whole arsenal costs around $1,000, but for Burcaw it’s a necessity. The 27-year-old author and speaker — who, alongside his fiancée, Hannah ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • To Advance Civil Rights, Oppose Transgender Extremism
    We are very pleased to publish this submission is from Lucinda Stoan. She is a social justice activist, mother, and educator, based in Washington State in the  US.   This detailed and comprehensive source-linked overview of trans issues and what is at stake will be useful for many people, especially in ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Faafoi should be fired
    Newshub last night reported that Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi had apparently promised to help out a mate with an immigration issue. While its normal for people to approach MPs for assistance in this area, when you're a Minister, the rules are different: as the Cabinet Manual says, Ministers must "at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
    New Zealand's Underarm Banker: It bears recalling that the “independence” of the Reserve Bank Governor was for decades held up by neoliberal capitalists as the most compelling justification for passing the Reserve Bank Act. Interesting, is it not, how the ruling class’s support for the Bank’s independence lasted no longer than ...
    6 days ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    6 days ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    6 days ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    6 days ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    6 days ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    7 days ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    1 week ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    1 week ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Damn the Polls
    So, there have been a bunch of bad polls out for Labour, and even the Leftie's friend, Survation, have recently given the Conservatives a rip-snorting 11% lead.  You Gov's much vaunted MRP poll - which pretty much nailed the result in 2015 - is currently predicting a comfortable majority for ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Europe declares an emergency
    The European Parliament has voted overwhelmingly to declare a climate emergency:The European parliament has declared a global “climate and environmental emergency” as it urged all EU countries to commit to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The vote came as scientists warned that the world may have already crossed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Bi-Partisan Commitment To X-ing “P”.
    Pure Fear: Worse than Heroin, this drug’s addictive power was terrifying. People under its influence didn’t drift off to Elysium. Nor did it persuade inadequate individuals that they could conquer the world. No, this drug – pure crystal methamphetamine, “P” for short – unlocked the gates of Hell itself. It ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Advice about measles: when ignorance is definitely not a virtue
    As the rate of measles infection, and of deaths, continues to climb in Samoa, antivaccination activists infectious disease proponents seem intent on doubling down on their claims about vaccination. (Check pretty much any news-media FB post about measles & you’ll see exactly what I mean.) Unfortunately, some of them have ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Samoa’s devastating measles epidemic – why and how bad?
    Samoa are experiencing a devastating measles epidemic. It is possible that 2-3% of the population will ultimately be infected by the time it is over. Hopefully the mass immunisation campaign currently under way can mitigate some of this, for many it is too late. The first question many people ask ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • “It’s basic rights we are defending”: the Meghan Murphy interview
    Meghan Murphy is a Canadian writer and journalist She runs the Feminist Current website which she founded in 2012.  She was a keynote speaker for the Feminism2020 conference in Wellington this month. When Massey University cancelled the original venue booking Feminism2020 was hosted in Parliament by MP David Seymour. Meghan ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • A week of protests in Colombia
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Colombia has lived through one week of protests against the economic measures taken by president Duque. What looked like a protest that would fizzle out after its first day on November 21st is still going strong. Part of the reason for the continuance ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-neutrinos–When you are your own opposite
    Around a million billion pass through you each second, almost all originating from our sun, but few of them are likely to interact with you enroute. I was reading in a physics magazine earlier in the week about the nature of neutrinos. These are extremely numerous elementary particles, but only ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Exoplanets, life, and the danger of a single study
    By Pallab Ghosh There’s value in covering new research advances, even when the underlying science is unsettled. But there are also risks. The recent announcement that scientists discovered water on the planet K2-18b, 110 light years away, prompted a media swoon. News stories, including a piece written by me, billed ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The Intersex Continuum
    I wrote this review a couple of years ago when I was still in the process of getting my head around the politics of transgenderism, and specifically the claim that intersex conditions lend support to the notion that sex is ‘socially constructed’. Since writing this review I have come across ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Leaving us with the bill
    Two weeks ago, Malaysian-owned oil company Tamarind declared it was insolvent and went into administration after a failed offshore drilling campaign. Tamarind apparently specialises in buying oil fields at the end of their life and trying to squeeze out the last few drops of pollution. But part of their scam ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How much does flying contribute to climate change?
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz How much does our use of air travel contribute to the ...
    SciBlogsBy Shaun Hendy
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: The task before us
    Two weeks ago, the Zero Carbon Act became law. Right this moment, the Climate Change Commisison will be working on its initial budgets for 2022-25 and 2026-2030, and the UN has just given them a very clear steer:Countries must make an unprecedented effort to cut their levels of greenhouse gases ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2309) Mr. Spock
    Minor planet/asteroid (2309) Mr. Spock is named not for the character in Star Trek, but for a cat that was itself imperturbable, logical, intelligent and had pointed ears In a preceding blog post I introduced one of my favourite asteroids, (2472) Bradman, and also mentioned (6581) Sobers amongst a few ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Measles deaths and antivax misinformation
    Today the death toll from measles in Samoa rose to 32. All but four of the dead were less than 5 years old. Absolutely terrible, heartbreaking, news. That statistic alone should be enough to give the lie to the common claim by antivaccination activists plague enthusiasts that “measles is a ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Colombia: the state murder of Dilan Cruz
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh It is late here in Bogotá, almost 11.30pm on Monday the 25th of November as I write this. The day began full of hope with yet more massive marches throughout the country, a mix of the International Day of Non-Violence Against Women and the National Strike. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-fluoride propagandists appear not to read the articles they promote
    Anti-fluoride activists are rubbing their hands in glee over what they claim is “yet another study” showing fluoride harms the brains of children. But their promotion relies on IQ relationships which the paper’s authors acknowledge disappearing when outliers or other factors are considered. And they completely ignore other relationships ...
    2 weeks ago

  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Death of NZ High Commissioner to Cook Islands
    New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Tessa Temata, died in Palmerston North over the weekend, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said today. Ms Temata, 52, had recently returned to New Zealand for medical treatment. "On behalf of the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, we extend ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Wellington rail upgrade full steam ahead
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced construction is underway on Wellington commuter rail upgrades which will mean more frequent services and fewer breakdowns. The upgrades include converting the Trentham to Upper Hutt single track section to a double track, with a new signalling system, upgraded stations and level crossings, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Defence Climate Change Implementation Plan released
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw have announced the release of a Defence Climate Change Implementation Work Plan, titled Responding to the Climate Crisis: An Implementation Plan.  The plan sets out a series of recommendations based on the 2018 New Zealand Defence Assessment, The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt releases funding to support South Canterbury
    A medium-scale adverse event has been declared for the South Canterbury district, which will see up to $50,000 in funding made available to support farming communities which have been significantly affected by recent heavy rain and flooding in the area, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two weeks of solid rain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech at launch of Rethinking Plastics Report
    Thank you Professor Juliet Gerrard and your team for the comprehensive and extremely helpful report and recommendations. Thank you too to all the stakeholders and interested parties who have contributed ideas and thinking to it. “Making best practice, standard practice” is a great framework for change and the action plan ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste
    The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealandreport, released by her Chief Science Advisor ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • International student enrolments grow in universities and the regions
    International education continues to thrive as the Government focuses on quality over quantity, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. The tuition revenue from international education increased to $1.16 billion last year with the average tuition fee per student increasing by $960. The total number of international students enrolled in New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Speech to Government Economics Network 2019 Conference
    I want to talk about one of the most pressing issues in our national life: the housing crisis and the poor performance of our cities. The argument I want to make to you is that generations of urban land use policy have lacked a decent grounding in economics. The consequences ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • DHB leadership renewed and strengthened
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says new appointments to DHBs represent a significant changing of the guard, with 13 new chairs including four Māori chairs. Today 76 appointments have been announced to complement elected board members, as well as eight elected members appointed as either chair or deputy chair.  Four ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tabuteau to advance New Zealand’s trade and political interests with European partners
    Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Fletcher Tabuteau, is travelling to Germany, Poland, Austria, and Spain next week to bolster New Zealand’s political and trade relationships in Europe. While in Spain, Mr Tabuteau will represent New Zealand at the 14th Asia-Europe (ASEM) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Madrid. “New Zealand strongly supports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Kris Faafoi
    “I’ve spoken to Minister Faafoi, who has apologised for his poor handling of this issue,” Jacinda Ardern said. “I have confidence in Kris as a hardworking and effective Minister, but this should have been dealt with in a much clearer manner, and I’ve made my views on that very clear ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tonga-New Zealand Joint Ministerial Forum
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters met with Tongan Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa in Wellington today. The pair signed a Statement of Partnership setting out joint priorities for cooperation out to 2023.  “We welcomed Prime Minister Tu'i'onetoa on his first visit to New Zealand as Prime Minister. Tonga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Shooting in Kurow
    The Minister of Police Stuart Nash says his sympathies are with the family of a man who died after being shot by Police in Kurow. “Initial reports are that Police were called by a family member to help the man who was threatening to harm himself,” Mr Nash says. “However ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government delivers funding boost for ethnic communities
    Ethnic communities will be able to plan and deliver more community initiatives thanks to an increase in Government funding, Minister for Ethnic Communities Hon Jenny Salesa said today. “Ensuring Aotearoa New Zealand is a place we can all be proud to call home has been a key priority of our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt supports Southland farmers in sustainability
    Healthier waterways, better productivity and farmer wellbeing are front and centre in a new project involving more than 1000 Southland farmers and growers. Minister of Agriculture Damien O’Connor today announced that the Thriving Southland Change and Innovation Project is the first region-wide extension programme supported by the $229 million Sustainable ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Flood of support for Top of the South catchment
    Work to look after nature and restore freshwater quality in Te Hoiere/Pelorus River catchment is getting a significant boost, thanks to new Government funding support Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage announced in Canvastown today. “Every New Zealander should be able to swim in their local river without getting sick, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Eight Queen’s Counsel appointed under new criterion
    Eight Queen’s Counsel have been appointed under a process that includes the new criterion of a commitment to improving access to justice, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. “The new criterion was included this year. It emphasises that excellence and leadership in the profession can be seen through a wider, community ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Major expansion for Wellington’s Onslow College
    Onslow College in Wellington will get 20 new classrooms for more than 400 students, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. The much-needed investment will relieve growth pressure the school has been experiencing for some time. Seven existing classrooms which have deteriorated over time will also be replaced, bringing the total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Talented young Kiwis awarded PM’s Scholarships to Asia and Latin America
    More than 250 young New Zealanders will add international experience to their education, thanks to the latest Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia (PMSA) and Latin America (PMSLA), Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This round of scholarships supports 252 recent graduates or current students to undertake study, research or internships ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government to improve competitiveness and transparency in the retail fuel market
    Consumers will benefit from a more competitive, transparent retail fuel market as a result of changes the Government will be making in response to the findings of the Commerce Commission’s study of the fuel sector. “We accept the Commission’s findings and, as the Prime Minister has said, we’re ready to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More cancer medicines for more people
    Five new cancer medicines have now been funded this year, meaning thousands of people have more treatment options PHARMAC has today announced that it has approved two new medicines for funding – fulvestrant for breast cancer and olaparib for ovarian cancer. This follows earlier decisions on advanced lung cancer treatment alectinib, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Government acts to sort out electoral ‘coin toss’ problem
    The Minister of Local Government, Hon Nanaia Mahuta says the Government will consider making changes to local electoral legislation before the 2022 elections to fix the problems that have arisen where elections are settled by a coin toss.  The Minister says the recount process in the Murupara- Galatea ward at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • NZ to Join IMO Convention to Reduce Ship Emissions
    New Zealand will sign up to new international maritime regulations to reduce ship emissions and lift air quality around ports and harbours, Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter announced today. Subject to completion of the Parliamentary treaty examination process, New Zealand will sign up to Annex VI of MARPOL, an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Bill to empower urban development projects
    New legislation to transform our urban areas and create sustainable, inclusive and thriving communities will tomorrow be introduced to Parliament, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said. “The Urban Development Bill gives Kāinga Ora-Homes and Communities the tools it needs to partner with councils, communities, mana whenua and private developers to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Early Learning Action Plan to kickstart long term change
    Today’s launch of He taonga te Tamaiti: Every child a taonga: The Early Learning Action Plan 2019-2029 provides the foundation for long-lasting changes to early learning, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says.   “Early learning will be one of the Government’s top education priorities going into 2020,” Chris Hipkins said.   ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago