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Open mike 10/12/2014

Written By: - Date published: 6:30 am, December 10th, 2014 - 197 comments
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Open mike is your post.

The Standard is not a conspiracy – just a welcome outlet for the expression of views. Leaders that command respect will not be undermined by this.

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

Step up to the mike …

197 comments on “Open mike 10/12/2014”

    • miravox 1.1

      In the Guardian how the wealth gap holds back economic growth

      Rising inequality is estimated to have knocked more than 10 percentage points off growth in Mexico and New Zealand, nearly nine points in the UK, Finland and Norway, and between six and seven points in the United States, Italy and Sweden.

      The thinktank said governments should consider rejigging tax systems to make sure wealthier individuals pay their fair share. It suggested higher top rates of income tax, scrapping tax breaks that tend to benefit higher earners and reassessing the role of all forms of taxes on property and wealth.

      However, the OECD said, its research showed “it is even more important to focus on inequality at the bottom of the income distribution. Government transfers have an important role to play in guaranteeing that low-income households do not fall further back in the income distribution”.

      The authors said: “It is not just poverty (ie the incomes of the lowest 10% of the population) that inhibits growth … policymakers need to be concerned about the bottom 40% more generally – including the vulnerable lower-middle classes at risk of failing to benefit from the recovery and future growth. Anti-poverty programmes will not be enough.”

      After 35 years the mainstream analysts finally ‘get’ it. The evidence that inequality is bad for economies (not just societies) .

      So what are the odds of the neoliibs changing tack and increasing taxes on the wealthy, improving wages and restoring benefits to reduce inequality?

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1

        So what are the odds of the neoliibs changing tack and increasing taxes on the wealthy, improving wages and restoring benefits to reduce inequality?

        Considering that the whole purpose of neo-liberalism was to shift wealth and power from the majority of the population into the hands of the rich and thus recreate a feudal society – none.

  1. amirite 2

    A day of shame for New Zealand, when Labour stupidly went along with the Nats in further curtailing of our civil liberties and rights to privacy.
    Hugely disappointed.

    • Paul 2.1

      Credit to the Greens, the Maori Party and New Zealand First.

      ‘New Zealand First leader Winston Peters called an expansion of the SIS’s surveillance powers “Nazism” in Parliament last night.

      And the Maori Party’s Marama Fox likened warrantless surveillance to the arrest and imprisonment without trial of Te Whiti o Rongomai of Parihaka.’

      The Herald’s editor thinks this incursion into our civil rights as less worthy of reading than 5 stories about celebrities and entertainment. Well done Messrs Roughan and Murphy, you are doing the bidding of your corporate masters so well.


      • The Chairman 2.1.1

        Yes, kudos to the Greens, the Maori Party and New Zealand First. Shame on Labour.

      • Kiwiri - Raided of the Last Shark 2.1.2

        I did wonder what truly was Labour about as the Bill was going through under urgency. I have been hoping for Labour to end the year with a clear and unambiguous note about they stand for. Am no wiser and feeling really let down.

      • greywarshark 2.1.3

        About sycophancy and support of unworthy subjects and objects. I was looking at an old NZ Womans Weekly where it had a panegyric for Sir Paul Holmes after his death. Adoring, sickly, accompanied by similar photos with his wife about whom he was quoted ‘I never spend a day without being thankful for the love of Deoborah’ or something.

        His elevation to the peerhood? joining the other Knights in White Satin? was such a populist dilution of the award. He was just a cheeky warty pinky whose mother didn’t take the opportunity to teach him some respect for others, and give him a good smack when you were still able to do so.

        • Chooky

          lol…actually i can think of quite a few people who need a good smack…as Queenie’s Nursie in ‘Black Adder’ would say….

          • greywarshark

            @ Chooky
            Funny…I was just looking this morning at that series old vid tapes which I must watch again. It has memorable characters, like Nursie. And Tony Robinson and his rendering (down) of scurvy Baldrick. What a contrast looking at foppish Hugh Laurie in it and compare him in House.

      • Tracey 2.1.4

        Wow the MP are participating in our parliamentary process post eelction! I am surprised because they have had no publicised opinions on anything recently.

    • Philip Ferguson 2.2

      Labour was pretty good at curtailing civil liberties itself. The Clark government began these kinds of attacks, using 9/11 as the excuse. Before that the 1972-1975 Labour government brought in legislation like the Unlawful Assemblies Act and the first Labour government brought in some fairly awful measures during WW2, not to mention their treatment of conscientious objectors – and, after WW2, Labour brought in peacetime conscription at the start of the Cold War.

      Check out Murray Horton’s articles on political repression here during WW2 and the conscription stuff.
      The secret history of WW2 in NZ: http://rdln.wordpress.com/2011/07/20/the-secret-history-of-ww2/
      Labour’s introduction of peacetime coonscription and the fight against it: http://rdln.wordpress.com/2011/10/26/labours-introduction-of-peacetime-conscription-and-the-fight-against-it/

      Here’s an interesting piece on Scoop on the last Labour governments plans:
      “The New Zealand High Court review process on who or what can be considered a terrorist or a terrorist group will be by-passed under a new law proposed by the Labour-led Government. . . ” Full at: http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0706/S00368.htm

      Lastly, see the pamphlet Daphna Whitmore and I wrote on the history of Labour: https://rdln.wordpress.com/2011/12/02/the-truth-about-labour-a-bosses-party/


    • Clemgeopin 2.3

      Yes, I am very disappointed that Labour did not oppose this warrant-less surveillance measure. A big mistake. I also think that we and the west will be bogged down in Iraq/Syria for a very long time. This should be the responsibility of the countries in the region and not include our direct participation. We will know in a couple of years if we have helped to reduce or actually helped to increase conflict/terrorists/security risks. I am skeptical. Quite a mess.

      • Kiwiri - Raided of the Last Shark 2.3.1

        I am very disappointed that Labour did not oppose this warrant-less surveillance measure

        Trying to get my head around why Labour really voted for the Bill or why Labour chose not to oppose it.

        Regarding the numbers needed in the House, the National Party in Government already had the majority with support from ACT and UF, right?

        Why did Labour, despite the concerns raised (urgency, definition, time specified for surveillance, sunset clause, lack of consultation, etc) went on to give lend their numbers to drive the Bill through?

        • Clemgeopin

          For political reasons, in order not to give an advantage to National in the minds of the public, particularly those in the large group in the ideological centre, perceiving National as being more patriotic or security conscious than Labour. Political expediency.

          • The Chairman

            For it to be politically expedient there would have to be evidence to support the notion there is such a large center and that they support Labour’s position in this bill.

            Moreover, that the perceived gain will outweigh the damage to the Party’s image and support lost.

            • Clemgeopin

              That is debatable. The Labour leadership would have considered all such isues before finalising their decision.

              • The Chairman

                And history (going back the last few elections) has shown how good Labour are at making such calls.

                • Clemgeopin

                  It is not wise to predict the future on the basis of history.

                  • Tracey

                    it is the only kind of prediction worth making.

                  • The Chairman

                    It wasn’t an election prediction.

                    I was drawing attention to their poor record of gauging public opinion. And when coupled with the absence of evidence, the expediency of such a decision must be questioned.

          • Murray Rawshark

            The sort of behaviour that this law allows the squirrels has nothing to do with the political centre, nor with patriotism. It is a totalitarian measure that has no place in a democracy. What Labour has just done is to give a huge boost to NAct’s efforts to move the acceptable even further to the right.

    • Chooky 2.4

      +100 amirite …and imo Bomber Bradbury says it all!


      …..”The claim that the SIS won’t spy on activists with this new warrantless spying is a joke. The SIS can spy on people for terrorism purposes or if they threaten economic or commercial interests. The Government claim that by removing the commercial and economic interests from warrantless spying that’s a safe guard, but if those commercial and economic interests can claim what is happening to them is being done via ‘terrorism’, they can be used.

      The other supposed safe guard is that the surveillance will need to gain a warrant to reach evidential thresholds, but that’s only true if the SIS wants to gain evidential thresholds, they could just be doing it for intelligence gathering, in which case they won’t need it for evidential thresholds.

      This is the spy agency recently outed working with the PM’s Office to falsify information to smear the Leader of the Opposition months before an election on a far right hate speech blog.”…..

    • Murray Rawshark 2.5

      Labour are always keen to show that they would be responsible guardians of the capitalist state. They should change their name.

  2. miravox 3

    Listening to the report on CIA interrogation techniques. Shocking, just shocking. Way more so when hearing it than reading it.

    Bush and Cheney still defending – calling torturers heroes. I’ll bet they’re pleased they didn’t sign up to the International Criminal Court. Hope they’re enjoying Texas because they won’t be welcome anywhere else.


    The CIA’s post-9/11 embrace of torture was brutal and ineffective – and the agency repeatedly lied about its usefulness, a milestone report by the Senate intelligence committee released on Tuesday concludes.

    • Sadly, Bush, Cheney, et al. will never be punished for this.

      • KJS0ne 3.1.1

        Not in the judicial sense, but they still have a legacy to defend, hence calling their interrogator lackeys ‘heros’. This is where they can be hurt. Sadly over time the swindles, scams, war crimes, savagery and excess of the Bush II era have increasingly been seen through the rose colored glasses of ‘was he really that bad? No doubt due in part because a lot of those policies have willfully continued under Obama, forcing an identity crisis upon many a democrat. There is also a strong chance there will be a Bush III on the throne next year, and that eventuality would certainly kill any chance of civil investigation.

      • Philip Ferguson 3.1.2

        I see a few individuals made a massive amount of money out of the torture.

        Ain’t the market great?

        Nothing so sick that it can’t be commodified under capitalism.


    • Colonial Rawshark 3.2

      This tweet summarises a bit of what our “allies” like to do to people. Exposing torture subjects to “insects” in “confinement boxes” sounds like a whole lot of fun. What psychos get employed by the USA to think up this stuff.

    • Morrissey 3.3

      Dianne Feinstein showed courage to release this report in the face of pressure from Obama’s henchmen, but the fact remains that she voted to authorize the use of military force in Iraq in 2002 and has stated that she is a supporter of the Patriot Act. The crimes that she so eloquently outlined in the Senate this morning all stem from the initial, illegal, unprovoked aggression that she—and John McCain—supported.

    • joe90 3.4


      Negar MortazaviVerified account ‏@NegarMortazavi

      All 20 findings of CIA #TortureReport in one page. Via @rbsw
      Manhattan, NY


      Ray Locker ‏@rlocker12

      Intel report: CIA didn’t brief Bush on interrogation techniques until 2006; it made him squeamish. What about KSM?

      Ramez Naam ‏@ramez

      CIA tortured Gul Ruhman to death at “the Salt Pit”. Mistaken identity. http://bit.ly/1AbygbK

      Jeremy SchulmanVerified account ‏@jeremyschulman

      Seems like the CIA really, really wanted KSM to say he was recruiting black people http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/12/cia-torture-report-abuses-rectal-feeding

      Dr. Matt @DrMatthew

      REMINDER: It’s been 2058 days since @seanhannity promised to undergo #waterboarding “for charity” and “for the troops”. #coward



      Blake HounshellVerified account ‏@blakehounshell

      Oh RT @fordm: Some CIA officials overseeing torture program “had reportedly admitted to sexual assault.”

  3. “..Is It Time to Treat Heroin Addiction with … Heroin?..

    ..For a century – heroin has been outlawed –

    – but the powerful opiate has medical uses –

    – including one rather obvious one..”



  4. serious question:..

    ..given the downsides of using steroids are usually longterm in manifestation..

    ..would the short-term benefits from using steroids outweigh that longterm risk..

    ..in the aged/infirmed..?

    ..(especially those suffering from ‘wasting’-diseases..)

    • miravox 5.1

      I guess Northshoredoc will have proper answer if he’s lurking…

      In my experience and from what I’ve read and been advised about with a disease that ‘disappears’ with steroids, (not aged and no longer infirm – fingers crossed) short term use has no long term health impact and can make the difference between living a relatively normal life and being bed-ridden. I’ve used them occasionally for periods as short as one week up to 3 months until disease suppressant drugs kick-in. So yeah, over those timeframes short term use definitely outweighed long-term risk, if there was one.

      I know people who have used steroids for long periods and effects can be quite bad. People can under-estimate the risk because they feel so well and other drugs seem scarier.

      • Murray Rawshark 5.1.1

        I was told of an Aussie soldier who took up body building and had to have a liver transplant 3 months later because of steroids. I hated taking the ones I was on after my transplant. They filled me with stupid roid rage and I was always hungry.

        • miravox

          +1 on the hungry! But, yeah meds like this need monitoring to see what side effects start showing up. Heart problems is another. I had a friend who couldn’t live a pain-tolerable life without steriods (other meds couldn’t control his disease during the 20-odd years he had it) – damned either way, he was.

          So pleased to read you got your transplant. All the best with that.

    • BM 5.2

      More protein.


      Milk ,eggs, lean meat.

  5. James Thrace 6

    I’ll keep banging this drum.

    There is no need for a rethink on property speculators. It is not a business, this renting out of homes.

    All that is required is a rebalancing on whom can claim back expenses on a residential property.

    Skew the playing field in favor of owner/occupiers and allow them to claim interest and maintenance deductions.

    I reckon a maximum 15% rebate on interest costs and maintenance combined would be sufficient.

    Pros: more people in their own homes. Mortgage can be paid back faster. Stronger communities, warmer dryer homes that are maintained.

    If we adopt the 1+1 principle (own home + investment property) those people with 5 or more investment properties lose the tax advantages.

    More wealth then goes into productive assets, business building and more employment.

    Cons: tax system will need an overhaul, what’s to stop people claiming they live in a property when its really rented out – although I suspect proof such as a utility bill etc would be proof enough.

    • Colonial Rawshark 6.1

      There is no need for a rethink on property speculators. It is not a business, this renting out of homes.

      Property speculators aren’t in the business of renting out homes. They are in the business of collecting a few rental cheques whilst waiting for the market to keep pushing their property asset prices sky high.

      That’s why they are called “property speculators.”

    • John Shears 6.2

      Agree have thought this for many years since we bought our 1st house with a 5 year interest only loan,partially withheld until specified improvements had been completed, a massive bank overdraft and capitalisation of the family benefit for 3 children.
      The house had been modernised in 1930 and we bought in 1959 it was a wreck having been rented for a long time. It got us on the property ladder and we are now living in a retirement village with a lovely 2 bed apartment and money in the bank, not that much but enough to feel comfortable.

      I would hate to think how much interest we have paid apart from the cost of improvements and maintenance on the houses we have owned and not a cent of reduction on our tax bill.

      • Colonial Rawshark 6.2.1

        I would hate to think how much interest we have paid apart from the cost of improvements and maintenance on the houses we have owned and not a cent of reduction on our tax bill.

        Why the heck would you suppose the Government should reduce its tax take from you, while conversely the banks got to cream off exorbitant profits from the excessive interest you had to pay to them over many years?

        Why not just cut to the chase – and reduce the take that the banking sector pulls out of household budgets.

    • Ad 6.3

      Good grief I know plenty for whom it’s a business.

      Email Roberton and Twyford with your ideas and see how they go.

  6. Te Reo Putake 7

    Go Sinead! Not even a member of Sinn Fein yet, but she’s already in kick over the statues mode.


    edit: one of the cases Sinead is hot about:


    • adam 7.1

      Thanks for the links. Much respect for Mairia Cahill, brave women in the face of a old boys club.

      • Te Reo Putake 7.1.1

        Yep. Much as I have sympathy for the Republican cause, the bullying behaviour of Sinn Fein has often been appalling and the covering up by the likes of Gerry Adams of their crimes against their own people is shameful.

        • adam

          Could not agree more.

        • The Al1en

          ” Much as I have sympathy for the Republican cause,”

          Why is that? And to what extent? You wouldn’t support nail bombs in rubbish bins in parks would you?

          • Te Reo Putake

            No, I don’t support bombs like that in any circumstances. I side with VI Lenin who said the use of bombs was counter productive because of their indiscriminate violence. I look at today’s drone strikes as being similar in nature.

            I don’t know why I feel inclined toward the Irish, there’s no family history that I’m aware of, for example. But I always have been a battler for the battlers and for some reason I have always gravitated toward the republican cause.

            Part of it might be musical, too. Many 1980’s Friday nights in Wellington listening to Ourselves Alone knocking out the rebel songs certainly helped. I’ve also played football most of my life for Catholic clubs despite my Presbyterian upbringing and adult atheism. And I can’t tell you how proud I was earlier this year to be able to sing along with the rest of the fans at Celtic Park when the Bhoys won the title again.

            For some reason it just seems natural to me.

          • Murray Rawshark

            Nail bombs in rubbish bins is not a cause. An Ireland free of English domination is. It is fully possible to have sympathy for a cause without agreeing with every act undertaken by other supporters.

  7. Paul 8

    A failure to have a diverse economic plan by this government is costing our country.
    Maybe now more people will see this government for what it is…incompetent, self serving, and beholden to large overseas corporate interests.

    ‘Fonterra said it had cut its farmgate milk price forecast for 2014/15 to $4.70 per kg of milk solids, down from previous forecast of $5.30 a kg.
    The giant dairy co-operative said that, when combined with the previously announced estimated dividend range of 25-35 cents per share, this amounted to a forecast cash payout of $4.95 – $5.05 for the current season. The board will revise its dividend outlook when the co-op announces its interim result next year.’


    And on RNZ Fonterra are saying no change in price until next winter.
    I fear that this will presage the fire sale of NZ farmland to large overseas corporations.
    Thanks John Key…you are selling our children’s birthright.

    • Jimmy 8.1

      As sent to Fonterra Supplier/Shareholders from Fonterra.

      Good morning

      Today we announced that the forecast Farmgate Milk Price for the 2014/15 season is being reduced from $5.30 per kgMS to $4.70 per kgMS.
      When combined with the previously announced estimated dividend range of 25-35 cents per share, this amounts to a forecast Cash Payout of $4.95 – $5.05 for the current season
      The Advance Rate is being held at $4 per kgMS for December paid January, and will then reduce to $3.85 per kgMS from January, paid February.
      From February the monthly Capacity Adjustment of 52 cents will also be paid so the total advance will be $4.37.
      Click here for an updated schedule.
      The forecast revision will put unwanted pressure on farming business budgets, and your Co-operative will be doing everything possible to help you through this tough period.
      The business is undertaking a targeted programme to generate more cash.
      This includes further strengthening tight controls on operating expenditure, driving harder on working capital, and deferring capex – provided this does not slow progress on our V3 business strategy.
      There is still considerable volatility in global dairy markets which is contributing to weak demand.
      Factors include uncertainty around future milk production both globally and in New Zealand, falling oil prices, geopolitical uncertainty in Russia and Ukraine, and subdued demand from China.
      Today’s revised forecast reflects the Board and management’s best estimate at this time.
      Given the uncertainty, please take care with your on-farm budgets.
      We will keep you updated.


      John and Theo

      • millsy 8.1.1

        I wonder how much of this reduction is due to Fonterra’s backdoor NZX listing.

        Fonterra may not be actually listed on the stock exhange but as it is bound by the same laws and regulations associated with listed companies then strictly speaking it effectively is on the stock exchange.

      • Tracey 8.1.2

        How is this impacting you Jimmy?

    • Saarbo 8.2

      Fonterra keep talking about a recovery next year but both the US and EU are producing record outputs…both increased supply by 4% over the last year. To put this into perspective, the US produce 5 times the milk NZ does and the EU produce 7 times the milk we do…so 4% increase in US and EU equates to increasing NZ supply by over 40%. There isn’t going to be much pressure on the demand side of the demand/supply curve in the short term in my humble opinion.

      I had to have a chuckle when the Chinese Premier visited recently, he stated that “the only thing New Zealand has to worry about is whether we can produce enough Dairy products to satisfy rising demand in China”…I am sure China have a policy of spreading this message to all dairy markets knowing very well what impact this message will have on “Supply” in the “free market” west…their monthly cheque is much easier to sign when they are paying $2200 per tonne for WMP instead of $5000 per tonne. Very clever.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.2.1

        I had to have a chuckle when the Chinese Premier visited recently, he stated that “the only thing New Zealand has to worry about is whether we can produce enough Dairy products to satisfy rising demand in China”

        Which means that they’re working hard to do exactly that. Hell, Fonterra’s even helping them to achieve that goal.

  8. Philip Ferguson 9

    A key part of the rising inequality is the ‘working poor’. A concerted campaign is needed against ‘zero hours’ contracts.

    Here’s a couple of pieces on the ‘precariat’ in NZ (I’m not overly keen on the term because what is happening is that large chunks of the working now find their jobs precarious, not just one layer.

    Information technology and the rise of New Zealand’s modern servant class:

    Bending over backwards: NZ’s temp economy and capital’s need for a flexible workforce: http://rdln.wordpress.com/2014/12/07/bending-over-backwards-new-zealands-temp-economy-and-the-growing-need-for-flexible-labour/

    And here’s something written by a young chef about his workplace:
    The real working life of a chef – a view from the inside: http://rdln.wordpress.com/2013/05/22/the-real-working-life-of-a-chef-a-view-from-the-inside/

    See also: Can ‘we’ afford a living wage?: https://rdln.wordpress.com/2013/09/04/can-we-afford-a-living-wage/


  9. Puckish Rogue 10


    Something about having your cake and eating it springs to mind however its a great piece of politicking by John Key

    Although interestingly there was this bit as well


    NZ First decided not to give their support at the last moment, with leader Winston Peters proposing an amendment that would re-enact sedition laws repealed seven years ago. It was defeated. Peters said: “We are being asked to cry havoc and let slip the dogs of Nazism.”

    Wanting to slip in a return of sedition…what a twat

  10. Morrissey 11

    “Why should I debate with a supporter of apartheid? I’d rather punch him in the face.”

    • Paul 11.1

      It is pointless debating with climate deniers as well as they are facilitating genocide in the future.
      I don’t advocate punching them though.

    • Puckish Rogue 11.2

      “Why should I debate with a supporter of socialism? I’d rather punch him in the face.”

      Violence isn’t always the answer

      • Morrissey 11.2.1

        You didn’t watch the clip intelligently. Galloway wasn’t advocating violence—that’s what the Israel supporter advocates. Galloway was pointing out the impossibility of engaging in debate with a fanatic.

        I am interested that you equate someone who supports socialism with someone who supports the most extreme state violence. I don’t believe you even have a conception of what socialism is—or maybe you just didn’t think very hard before you posted off that glib comparison.

        • Paul

          pr isn’t intelligent.
          You’re wasting your time discussing issues with him.

        • CATMAN

          “I am interested that you equate someone who supports socialism with someone who supports the most extreme state violence.”

          It’s not that PR (chris73, banned for three years) thinks socialism is that extreme, it’s more that he doesn’t think apartheid is that bad

        • Tracey

          it is unlikely he even watched the clip

          • Morrissey

            You’re right, no doubt. Reading is obviously not something he’s done much of, but you’d think he could spare a few minutes to watch a video, and engage with one of the sharpest minds on the British political scene.

      • adam 11.2.2

        A great motivational speech – by a great artist. Linton Kwesi Johnson


      • minarch 11.2.3

        “Violence isn’t always the answer”

        It certainly is in some circumstances though…

    • Murray Rawshark 11.3

      Pretty much my sentiments. I don’t always act on them.

      • Morrissey 11.3.1

        Good to hear that, Murray. If one DID ever lose it, and end up, say, stabbing someone to death, one should get in touch with Mr Garth McVicar and NewstalkZB. They’ll put in a good word for one, indeed they’ll organise an hysterical campaign of round-the-clock support for months, including the trashing of one’s victim—depending, naturally, on the social standing of the person one has killed…..

        Open mike 09/03/2011

        • Murray Rawshark

          I suspect I’d lose it with the wrong sort of person. I doubt if they’d support me, but then I don’t support them either.

  11. Morrissey 12

    I don’t advocate punching them though.

    Climate-deniers and extreme right wing Israel supporters, like the one Galloway refused to share a platform with, are both irrational, and impossible to argue with. Similarly the fruitcake Lord Monckton was denied a platform by Victoria University, which elicited an angry reaction from one of Jim Mora’s less intelligent guests….

    Open mike 17/04/2013

    • Paul 12.1

      Who was that?

      • Morrissey 12.1.1

        Jordan Williams, who was embarrassingly outed in Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics as the bag-carrier for Cameron Slater. Blubberguts once forced the wretch to get up in the middle of the night and drive out to Wellington Airport to conduct a clandestine observation of one of his targets. Williams does this Inspector Clouseau work gratis by the way—which makes you wonder just what Blubberguts has over him.

    • mac1 13.1

      I think one of the differences between liberal and conservative is what the law is for and why it is made. Both sides of the divide would generally require laws to be upheld- otherwise society destructs.

      • adam 13.1.1

        Please tell that to the current crop of Tory MP’s.

        • mac1

          Adam, note I did say generally. And it’s the generals who break the rules. And the lawmakers who think they are above the law. And the sociopaths who are a law unto themselves.

          So you’re right. BTW, crops are made to be cut, threshed and winnowed, and the chaff and weeds discarded.

  12. Paul 14

    Telecom tax us more to use the phone and internet to provide more loot for their multinational corporate shareholders.


    Governments don’t tax us anymore.
    Corporations do on behalf of their international banking shareholders.
    James Meek’s look at the UK has many parallels here.

    ‘It’s less clear what will happen here. Quite possibly, nothing very much. No one could describe the capitalism of the past two decades as stable, efficient or particularly productive. Yet it has survived the greatest financial crisis in generations practically unscathed. Intellectually, neoliberalism has long been thoroughly discredited. Politically, it has rarely been more secure. At the end of the book, Meek looks wistfully to a revival of non-market thinking, starting in the area of social housing. But in a political economy where nothing carries greater weight than the housing market, it’s an improbable scenario. As long as they own their homes, no matter how heavily mortgaged, most people in Britain don’t seem too bothered about who owns the country.’


  13. BLiP 15

    The release of the report into the United States’ use of torture is upon us, not that you can expect much . . .


    . . . also from The Intercept, 12 things to bear in mind when reading the report:

    1) You’re not actually reading the torture report.
    2) The CIA got to cut out parts.
    3) Senate Democrats had their backs to the wall.
    4) The investigation was extremely narrow in its focus.
    5) The investigation didn’t examine who gave the CIA its orders, or why.
    6) Torture was hardly limited to the CIA.
    7) Senate investigators conducted no interviews of torture victims.
    8) Senate investigators conducted no interviews of CIA officials.
    9) In fact, Senate investigators conducted no interviews at all.
    10) Bush and Cheney have acknowledged their roles in the program.
    11) The report’s conclusion that torture didn’t do any good is a big deal.
    12) No one has been held accountable.

    • Colonial Rawshark 15.1

      Totally unbelieveable…ladies and gentlemen, I give you our allies, the global champions of freedom and democracy! (As long as it is under their terms and conditions).

    • Chooky 15.2

      imo..These are particularly interesting

      4) The investigation was extremely narrow in its focus.
      5) The investigation didn’t examine who gave the CIA its orders, or why.
      6) Torture was hardly limited to the CIA.

      I read somewhere that the torturers in Iraq were not in the direct control of the USA top military in Iraq ….but were outside contractors and those USA military personnel directly involved in the torture were at the lower levels and were also trained by outside contractors…

      12) No one has been held accountable.

      • Chooky 15.2.1

        Robert Fisk (The Independent, 2004) on contractors involved in torture with links to Israel


        ….”And let’s cast our eyes upon that little, all-important matter of responsibility. The actual interrogators accused of encouraging U.S. troops to abuse Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib jail were working for at least one company with extensive military and commercial contacts with Israel. The head of an American company whose personnel are implicated in the Iraqi tortures, it now turns out, attended an “anti-terror” training camp in Israel and, earlier this year, was presented with an award by Shaul Mofaz, the right-wing Israeli defense minister.

        According to J.P. London’s company, CACI International, the visit of London — sponsored by an Israeli lobby group and including U.S. congressmen and other defense contractors — was “to promote opportunities for strategic partnerships and joint ventures between U.S. and Israeli defense and homeland security agencies.”

        The Pentagon and the occupation powers in Iraq insist that only U.S. citizens have been allowed to question prisoners in Abu Ghraib but this takes no account of Americans who may also hold double citizenship. The once secret torture report by U.S. Gen. Antonio Taguba refers to “third country nationals” involved in the mistreatment of prisoners in Iraq”…..



    • joe90 15.3

      The pricks knew this wrong.

      BEFORE President George W. Bush left office, a group of conservatives lobbied the White House to grant pardons to the officials who had planned and authorized the United States torture program. My organization, the American Civil Liberties Union, found the proposal repugnant. Along with eight other human rights groups, we sent a letter to Mr. Bush arguing that granting pardons would undermine the rule of law and prevent Americans from learning what had been done in their names.


  14. NZ Sage 16

    If only every NZ employee had the same attitude as Selwyn Cook. A good news, uplifting story that many NZ companies could learn from.

    Well done Selwyn.

    See: http://attitudelive.com/documentary/attitude-acc-employer-award?p=alternate

  15. adam 17

    Just In case you have not seen – Here is John Key’s email to his supporters.

    Yesterday we passed into law some important legislation to counter the rapidly evolving issue of foreign terrorist fighters.

    The Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill passed its third reading last night by 94-27 votes. This Bill provides us with measures that will add to the safety and security of New Zealand in the short-term.

    These measures mean we are in a stronger position to deal with the rising threat posed by foreign terrorist fighters.

    As I said last month New Zealand’s risk and threat profile is changing and the extremist group – Islamic State – has been successful in recruiting New Zealanders to its cause.

    A more comprehensive review of our legislative settings around this issue will occur in a broader intelligence review that will begin by the middle of next year.

    All of the short-term measures passed into law today will expire under a sunset clause on 1 April 2017, which reflects how long the full process of the more comprehensive review is expected to take.

    Over the past few months while we have been developing and passing this legislation, I have been as open as I can be with New Zealanders about the threat, without overstating it.

    I would like to reassure New Zealanders that we have been taking careful and responsible steps to protect their safety and security and will continue to do so.

    Read more about it here. (sorry did not bring the link)

    Thank you

    Rt Hon John Key

    Don’t you now just want to hug a kitten? Anyone??

  16. To the person who posts on this site (you know who you are) whos been coming
    to my blog for the past few months claiming to be Bradley Ambrose and asking for money for use of a photo, I have contacted the real Bradley Ambrose (Although he has more on his plate now) about someone impersonating him.

    One more attempt at claiming to be him on my site, and I will contact the police.

    • greywarshark 18.1

      What makes you think anyone on TS had anything to do with your use of the photo?

      • Brett Dale 18.1.1

        I did a blog post in 2011, and received a few messages at my blog, saying they are Bradley Ambrose and they want me to remove a photo because its copywrite.

        The past few months those messages have started up again, claiming to be Bradley Ambrose but this time demanding money for use of a photo.

        I have never received a formal email or anything else that would make me think this is actually Bradley.

        I have stats counter on my website. This person comes from the same city and has the same writing style as someone else who has commented on unrelated posts at my blog over the past years. (On those posts, they have used the name they use at this site to comment.

        I have contacted the real Bradley Ambrose to inform him, someone is pretending to be him and asking for money.

        As I said, if it happens again, I will contact the police and let them deal with it.

        • lprent

          We get a few of those. I usually ask them to prove that they are the holder of the copyright. Some do and I deal with it. Most do not.

          • Brett Dale

            A apology to the good people of the standard, it was in fact Bradley Ambrose that asked me to take down the picture. Thus the picture has been taken down. I was way off, thinking it was the person from this site that was pretending to be him. My Bad.

    • CATMAN 18.2

      Brett, I’ve been missing you

      The tr*lls here now are appalling

      Not up to your standard at all

      Love, felix

  17. it was a day of lies..the last questiontime of the yr..

    ..big/bold/bare-faced/pulsating whoppers..


  18. Plans to ban smoking outdoors in Auckland pisses off one news readers apparently.


    I support a total ban on tobacco and though some may find it ott, but there’s merit to the plan. If as the article states, quoting a reader comment of ‘outside is a bit much’ is generally accepted, then change it to can’t smoke within 10m or upwind of a non smoker or instant fine and see how that flies.

    • minarch 20.1

      “I support a total ban on tobacco”

      no there is NO merit to your plan, you clearly dont understand addiction at all

      I mean crystal meth is banned and nobody EVER smokes that ever do they ?

      • The Al1en 20.1.1

        I’ve been a smoker on and off for years, currently off, so of course I understand addiction. I also realise I’m one slip up away from being hooked again, so yeah, got tobacco addiction covered, thanks.

        So you got anything to offer to the debate other than slagging off the messenger?

        Your point about p, while being true, is irrelevant to the discussion. At the moment you can’t buy p in dairies, garages and supermarkets, and without knowing the figures, expect smokers, and the ongoing cost to the nation, outnumber p heads by a large margin.

        Also p addicts don’t usually imbibe anywhere they like without drawing attention and risking being busted.
        Smokers are usually arrogant and feel they have the right to engage their habit around non smokers even though second hand smoke is a well documented hazard. This attitude has to change or be changed.

        hh (got that adam?) has the right idea on this one, though 25 years to be smoke free as a nation is way too distant as a time frame.

        • minarch

          So you think criminalizing 20% of the population because of a bad habit is a good idea ?

          ” So you got anything to offer to the debate other than slagging off the messenger?”

          pointless telling the actual message how stupid it is really….

          • The Al1en

            You obviously think non smoking getting cancers because of second hand smoke is okay, you also must believe it’s okay for people to commit the stupidest and slowest suicides in the world, but the majority don’t.

            Those 20% of course wouldn’t have to be criminalised at all, all they have to do is quit puffing. If they don’t want to, then do what other scumbag drug users do and perform their dirty little habits out of public view.

            • minarch

              ” then do what other scumbag drug users do and perform their dirty little habits out of public view”

              My goodness !

              Personally I dont care what other people put into there bodies ,be it cigarettes, cannabis,heroin or other mens c#8ks its their business not mine

              as long as they dont have to break into my house to pay for it because banning it has pushed up the price….

              • The Al1en

                Have they broken in to your house to pay for the price rises so far? Obviously not or you’d have mentioned it instead of trying to find a quip to end on.

                Like you, I don’t care if a smoker wants to smoke, the stupid will do as the stupid want, but just like I wouldn’t permit a dope head or p addict to exhale over my kid in a park or at a bus stop, the same with tobacco users. There are no excuses for it. It’s a shame you value your chattels more than your fellow countrymen.

                Why not take your bravado and write some emails to the families of the victims of passive smoking and tell them to butt out (pun intended).

                “More than 350 New Zealanders die each year due to of exposure to second-hand smoke.”


                • minarch

                  What I respect is EVERYBODYS rights to live their lives the way they want to, as long as they aren’t impinging on anybody else

                  Dont like passive smoke ? Then dont sit next to me ( you probably wouldn’t anyway, im not particularly welcoming ) thats you exercising your rights buddy,

                  or tell me to F*#k off away from your kids if im smoking to close to them , its your right to do so..

                  “the stupid will do as the stupid want”

                  you think we should criminalize stupidity in general then ?

                  I dont even think you actually believe banning tobacco is a feasible or sensible idea you just like being contentious

                  i can relate to that

              • The Al1en

                “or other mens c#8ks”

                Bizarre. Again odd statement putting homosexuality on a par with illicit drugs.
                Watch that left foot 😉

                • CATMAN

                  If you forget homosexuality – which shouldn’t be difficult as it was never implied – the similarities abound re: using drugs/cocks

                  -Easy source of pleasure
                  -What you do with them is no-one else’s business
                  -Always keep them away from children
                  -Be very careful using them in the park


                  • minarch

                    maybe we should be labelling them like this

                    you know for safety and such

                    or maybe plain wrappers ?

                  • The Al1en

                    “If you forget homosexuality – which shouldn’t be difficult as it was never implied”

                    ” I dont care what other people put into there bodies ,be it cigarettes, cannabis,heroin or other mens c#8ks its their business not mine”

                    Alright then 😆

                    “Catman explained that nicely !”

                    Or not 😉

                    • CATMAN

                      I think I can clear that up for you Al1en

                      1/ minarch is writing as a man, in possession of a cock, and when he refers to people putting “other mens cocks” into their bodies he is referring to cocks other than his own (because he does have an interest in what people do with that particular cock)

                      2/ not all “people” are men

                      hope that helps

                    • The Al1en

                      “hope that helps”

                      It would if it wasn’t excusing bullshit.
                      minarch equates other mens cocks to mean the same as illicit drugs. A clear example of homophobia.
                      It’s not semantics, it’s not twisting words, it’s clear there in black and white.
                      Don’t spin just cause it’s me.

                    • CATMAN


                      Maybe try reading things twice before you reply-off-the-handle

                      Please refer to 2/ not all “people” are men

                    • The Al1en

                      It’s quite clear I’m right, but iIf dismiss is the only avenue left open to you, best you take it, though know it doesn’t lead to credville.

                    • CATMAN

                      You can’t really just *claim* someone is wrong though, you kinda have to *show* it by pointing out the flaws in their reasoning

                      You know, like I just did when I demonstrated how you’d misinterpreted minarch’s comment

                    • The Al1en

                      “You know, like I just did when I demonstrated how you’d misinterpreted minarch’s comment”

                      That’s leading and misleading at the same time. Well done. It’s you who has interpreted incorrectly.

                      “Personally I dont care what other people put into there bodies ,be it cigarettes, cannabis,heroin or other mens c#8ks its their business not mine”

                      There is only one correct interpretation of the sentence. To minarch, other mens cocks in their bodies is on a par with illicit and harmful drugs.
                      That he says he doesn’t care is irrelevant. The link doesn’t go away.

                    • batweka

                      “To minarch, other mens cocks in their bodies is on a par with illicit and harmful drugs.”

                      Are you sure you don’t think all drugs are all bad? Even of minarch’s list, you appear to think them inherently harmful, which is why you still don’t get that there is no problem comparing sex to drugs, despite it being explained multiple times now.

                      Besides, all you had to do was say no, that’s not true, here is what I really think, the first time I made the statement. You didn’t, and instead brought in daft arguments from other discussions as ad hominems against me and some kind of proof that I’m wrong.

                    • CATMAN

                      “There is only one correct interpretation of the sentence”

                      Nope there’s only one that you’ve managed to grasp – I’ve explained the other for you twice now, let’s see if three’s a charm:

                      If minarch is a man, and has a cock, and he writes about “people” doing things with “other men’s cocks”, there’s no reason for the reader to assume that the “people” are men

                      “To minarch, other mens cocks in their bodies is on a par with illicit and harmful drugs.”

                      Nope, that’s you

                      minarch doesn’t see a problem with people using either cocks or drugs – you seem to have a problem with both

                    • The Al1en

                      You’re just on one felix. There’s no reaon to mention what he did unless he thought they were as bad as each other.

                      I’m not changing my mind. I still think it a quite bizarre comment given the context.
                      Don’t agree? Okay. Chalk it up as a victory of your intellect and interpretation. 🙂

                      By the way, catman. One of mine. You’re welcome 😉

                      Open mike 21/10/2013

                    • CATMAN

                      But he doesn’t think they’re bad

                      You do

                    • The Al1en

                      He responded to a quote containing “dirty little habits” then made his list that he doesn’t care about, which other men’s cocks was oddly bought in to the debate.

                      Like said, just pat yourself on the back and have that cigar. 🙂

                    • CATMAN

                      No, YOU talked about dirty habits

                      He responded by saying he DIDN’T consider it dirty, and went on to list some other things he also didn’t consider dirty

                      Context is everything, Al1en, but I suppose that’s no fun when you’re deliberately trying to misrepresent someone to cover up your own vileness

                    • The Al1en

                      “No, YOU talked about dirty habits”

                      Yeah, smoking, “f they don’t want to, then do what other scumbag drug users do and perform their dirty little habits out of public view.” to which he responded with cigarettes, illicit drugs and other men’s cocks.

                      “He responded by saying he DIDN’T consider it dirty, and went on to list some other things he also didn’t consider dirty”

                      No he didn’t, he responded with “Personally I dont care what other people put into there bodies” and then listed tobacco, illicit drugs and other men’s cocks. He never mentioned anything about not considering anything dirty in that post at all.
                      You can take the win I’ve offered you, because I’d be banging my head on a brick wall here trying to get through to you, but I bet you can’t link from that post with “he DIDN’T consider it dirty” or other things “he also didn’t consider dirty” contained within.

                      ” you’re deliberately trying to misrepresent someone to cover up your own vileness”

                      That’s the projection of the night. Fuck off, twat.

                  • batweka

                    “If you forget homosexuality – which shouldn’t be difficult as it was never implied – the similarities abound re: using drugs/cocks”

                    You are forgetting that The Al1en thinks that drugs are inherently evil, full stop.

                    • The Al1en

                      That’s a bit dissapointing weka, and twice in a week.
                      Fisrt you cut tom scott slack over rape, and now ignore a homophobic comment because it suits your opportunity to have a dig.

                      A bit like when you got heated and wrote about beneficiaries being denied their “medicine”. Like ciggies will ever be scripted by doctors.

                      Fuck you smokers are selfish and twisted arses 😆

                      “You are forgetting that The Al1en thinks that drugs are inherently evil, full stop.”

                      You’ll have to quote to get that through customs, and no, you can’t hide in your overblown self importance. First place I’ll check. 😉

                    • batweka

                      You don’t deny it then.

                      You only think that there was a homophobic slur because you think drugs are evil. I don’t think drugs are evil so I didn’t see anything wrong with the other men’s cocks comment, it was just about personal pleasure (as Catman pointed out).

                      “A bit like when you got heated and wrote about beneficiaries being denied their “medicine”. Like ciggies will ever be scripted by doctors.”

                      A bit rich, given that in that thread you basically argued for beneficiaries to be treated as a separate class of NZers. Oh mighty champions of justice and fairness and what’s right :-p

                      I don’t smoke, haven’t done for nearly 30 years. I think both you and minarch are two sides of the same coin and I can argue either effectively (was considering putting a link to Bill’s post where he argued for smokers to be registered as addicts and only able to access their drugs via govt controlled outlets, which is the biggest practical suggestion I’ve seen of moving towards a smoke free NZ).

                      Where I disagree with minarch is the bit about free to do what we want to our bodies so long as we don’t hurt others. Problem is, the money spent on tobacco health could be spent on people who desperately need support with their health and aren’t getting it. But you can’t ban people from smoking or then we’ll have some fuckwit saying ban homeopathy and force everyone to have flu vaccinations and bang goes our body sovereignty. It’s daft and unnecessary. What is ok is the govt taking every reasonable measure to discourage people from starting smoking and giving smokers lots of support to stop or limit their smoking.

                      (I also disagree about the bit about passive smokers being able to move somewhere else. Doesn’t always work like that in real life).

                      tl;dr you’re both wrong.

                    • batweka

                      “Fisrt you cut tom scott slack over rape”

                      Outright lie. Link or it didn’t happen and you are just pu-ed.

                    • CATMAN

                      But Al1en, you haven’t demonstrated any homophobia

                      hint: even if minarch *was* talking about gay sex (and there’s nothing in his comment that suggests he was) he’d still essentially be saying that gay sex is none of his business

                    • batweka

                      But The Al1en thinks all drugs are wrong, therefore if you compare drugs and sex you are saying sex is wrong too.

                    • The Al1en

                      “You don’t deny it then.”

                      Oh ffs 🙄 Fuck off mate. You can’t link because it’s not true. I don’t think all drugs are evil at all, and I’ve never said or written it.

                      “You only think that there was a homophobic slur because you think drugs are evil”

                      Given the above that’s bullshit as well.

                      “A bit rich, given that in that thread you basically argued for beneficiaries to be treated as a separate class of NZers.”

                      No I didn’t, I said beneficiaries shouldn’t be allowed to spend their state hand out on tobacco. What you interpret from what I said is totally down to you.

                      I haven’t seen you go on one about tom scott with as much passion as you’ve hit on me, and even that link you pulled out the other day was pretty fucking tame compared to how you’ve reacted to other sexist shit before.
                      If you say otherwise I’ll believe you, but next time some clown makes a joke about rape I’ll be taking notice for consistency.

                    • The Al1en

                      “even if minarch *was* talking about gay sex (and there’s nothing in his comment that suggests he was) he’d still essentially be saying that gay sex is none of his business”

                      But in his opinion on par with heroin and other illicit drugs.

                    • batweka

                      “No I didn’t, I said beneficiaries shouldn’t be allowed to spend their state hand out on tobacco. What you interpret from what I said is totally down to you.”

                      Yep, like I said, benes are second class citizens. Everyone else is free to spend their income on tobacco, just not benes.

                      “What you interpret from what I said is totally down to you.”

                      Right back at ya dude. My position on Scott’s misogyny is clear for people to see. Why you are pu-ing it is not clear at all.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Yep, like I said, benes are second class citizens. Everyone else is free to spend their income on tobacco, just not benes.”

                      No, not second class citizens as that’s something I don’t believe at all, but on a small state hand out which most if not all agree is way too little to live on, spending a chunk of that money and watching it go up in smoke is crass and seeing as it’s a deadly habit, grossly irresponsible for the state to be sanctioning and paying for it. A bit like why thy don’t provide fags on the nhs sort of thing.

                      You can, and do, get all bent out of shape in your interpretation, especially when you think it’s bene bashing and usually sexism, which is fine by me, but you got this one wrong. If you think that was bene bashing then you’ve lost it love.

                      “Right back at ya dude. My position on Scott’s misogyny is clear for people to see. Why you are pu-ing it is not clear at all.”

                      I’ll go check that link you provided the other day again and see how harsh the criticism was. From memory it wasn’t rightfully scathing, but if on re-reading I can see the obvious attack lines from you I’ll concede and withdraw the point.

                    • The Al1en

                      Condemning the obvious

                      I do believe you’ve got more upset and cutting over me wanting to ban cigarettes for beneficiaries, let alone other stuff I’ve seen you go off on, so no retraction.

                    • batweka

                      How does that link demonstrate I cut Scott slack on rape? I basically say there that he’s released a song that promotes and endorses rape culture and that I think that is worse than saying he’s going to kill the PM (and I give rationale for that).

                      “No, not second class citizens as that’s something I don’t believe at all, but on a small state hand out which most if not all agree is way too little to live on, spending a chunk of that money and watching it go up in smoke is crass and seeing as it’s a deadly habit, grossly irresponsible for the state to be sanctioning and paying for it. A bit like why thy don’t provide fags on the nhs sort of thing.”

                      See, bene as a class who get told how they should spend their money. You appear to think that a benefit is a gift with strings not an entitlement and from what you’ve said I understand you think beneficiaries should be sanctioned to control their spending behaviours. Not low income people mind, just benes.

                      Worse, it’s exactly that attitude that means that some people, including too many WINZ staff, think that benefits are for the deserving rather than anyone in need. I’ve said it before, you’re attitudes are very similar to Paula Bennet’s.

                    • The Al1en

                      “How does that link demonstrate I cut Scott slack on rape? ”

                      I told you already, I think you’ve reacted harsher to me and others than about scott. He got off easy by comparison.

                      “See, bene as a class who get told how they should spend their money. You appear to think that a benefit is a gift with strings not an entitlement and from what you’ve said I understand you think beneficiaries should be sanctioned to control their spending behaviours. Not low income people mind, just benes.”

                      We were talking about beneficiaries not low income earners, and no I don’t see them as a class, again, that’s you spinning wildly for effect. I’ve only recently got back into the workforce myself after a period of unemployment and I never thought of myself as second rate or a class aside. The money is what it is, a right, gift, handout, hand up, what ever. I don’t think it’s the obscenity you do that recipients don’t waste it on drugs, when as stated, it’s almost universally agreed it’s not substantial enough to live on. Sure, if there is disposable income after bills then drug up if you want, but from experience, there usually isn’t.

                      “Worse, it’s exactly that attitude”

                      Which you’re making up I have.

                      “that means that some people, including too many WINZ staff, think that benefits are for the deserving rather than anyone in need. I’ve said it before, you’re attitudes are very similar to Paula Bennet’s.”

                      Say what you like as always. Mostly it’s been spite or attack politicking and water off a ducks back, and cause I don’t really trust your objectiveness or fairness it’s not that much of a big deal.
                      I’m not getting personal about it, but I am disagreeing with you strongly. I do think you can be selective with your targeting, for whatever reason. It’s only human nature you’d push back when called on it.

                      I think that must cover it all on this topic and any thing else will just be an excuse to get gratuitous and I’m not in the mood for it, though having said that, never say never – I’m always straight down the line and never pull punches to suit the subject matter to my own end.
                      I wish you hadn’t got involved, starting off with a lie and gross distortion as you did, but glad that we’ve got it all out in the open. 🙂

                • minarch

                  WTF are you even talking about now ?


                  Catman explained that nicely !

                  Thank goodness for people smarter than me 😉

            • Clemgeopin

              You seem to be on a crusade against tobacco and lady nicotine.

              Have you studied the ill effects of the huge amounts of vehicle exhaust fumes you, and we all, continuously inhale every day…and night, 24/7/365? Wonder if that is nice and dandy and less harmful compared to tobacco. Any idea?

              • The Al1en

                Don’t be a dick. Smoking illnesses are eminently preventable and the costs to the nation put to better use, but next time I see a kid being pushed exhaust fumes, to get addicted, to protect the petrol companies profit margins I’ll write a letter to the editor and complain. 🙄

                Everyone gets smoking is extremely harmful (they even write it on the packets ffs), so the argument really is do we let smokers right to chose the wrong decision affect those in nose shot?
                I say no, but do feel free to extol the virtues of the ignorant because they have the right to be ignorant, despite the costs human and otherwise.

                • minarch

                  ” A clear example of homophobia”

                  Im a homophobe ?

                  fuck you

                  straight up…

                  • The Al1en

                    You made the bizarre comment equating other men’s cocks to illicit drugs in the context of dirty habits in a discussion about smoking.

                    I’ve never had a positive impression of you through your posts, mostly thinking them to be knee jerk reactionary of the not very educated or illuminated variety. Now I think you’re a coward as well for not owning your bigotry. So no problem with your fuck you.

                    Off another xmas card list then? lol

                    • minarch

                      “I’ve never had a positive impression of you through your posts, mostly thinking them to be knee jerk reactionary of the not very educated or illuminated variety”

                      This makes me very happy since I cant be bothered with your pseudo-intellectual bullshit either ,

                      So here have it twice since you seem to crave it ,

                      Fuck you rasclart

                    • The Al1en

                      “An insulting West Indian term, which implies the recipient is the blood from a woman’s vagina following a period. This is not to be confused with “bumbeclart” which is a reference to shit from an arse.”


                    • minarch

                      its all yours baby , own it !

    • millsy 20.2

      A total ban on tobacco will probably force some of this country’s most vulnerable into dealing with some of our worst organized crime factions. Among other things.

      I dont like smoking myself, but I see why people do it, some due to stress, keep warm, keep weight down, etc and so on.

      • The Al1en 20.2.1

        Perfect reason to not ban that is, cause some people won’t like it and may turn to the black market, however, that’s okay because it doesn’t matter where the tobacco comes from if they still can’t use in public, which is sort of the point in the outside smoking ban.

      • The Al1en 20.2.2

        “British researchers have found that smoking actually creates stress by making smokers feel anxious when their need for nicotine kicks in then giving them a sense of what they think is relaxation, but in reality is withdrawal relief, when they do light up. Their findings, published in the journal Addiction, revealed that heavy smokers who quit and stayed tobacco-free reported lower levels of stress overall than when they were still addicted.”

        “smoking actually slows down your circulation so you’ll get colder quicker.
        The benefits of stopping smoking are huge – and fast. Within just eight hours of giving up your blood oxygen levels return to normal and circulation begins to improve after just two weeks – helping to keep you warm from the inside (Department of Health, 2006).”

        Weightwatchers – “It’s true that smoking can seem to dampen your appetite. It damages your taste buds, which makes food less appealing, and it also slightly increases the rate at which your body burns calories — your metabolic rate.

        But any weight-loss or weight-maintenance benefits that come from smoking are more than offset by the health risks, which include heart disease, stroke, lung cancer, emphysema, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, just to name a few.”

  19. CATMAN 21

    So in the house today, David Seymour, a man who was installed in Parliament *only* because of an anti-democratic dirty deal, was giving shit to list MPs who are in parliament because people actually *voted* for their party, because apparently he’s a proper MP and they wouldn’t know what that’s about

    ffs New Zealand, apparently this is the govt you deserve

    • Murray Rawshark 21.1

      He probably believes he deserves to be there. I can see him being that delusional.

      • CATMAN 21.1.1

        As far as I can tell, ACT pretty much believe in the divine right of kings

        • Morrissey

          They believe in the Blessed Scowling Holy Fruitbat, Ayn.

          I doubt many of them have actually read her unreadable crap, but they still worship her.

  20. Morrissey 22

    “What sort of people could even DO torture? They’re psychopaths!”
    The Panel grapples with the problem of evil

    Radio NZ National, Wednesday 10 December 2014
    Jim Mora, Michelle Acourt, Gordon McLauchlan, Zoe Ferguson

    No Nevil Breivik Gibson or John Barnett or Barry Corbett or Jordan Williams on the programme to defend torture today. Nobody like Chris Trotter to deliver a windy admonition against those who would be so foolish as to utter any word of condemnation of the torture and murder of helpless captives. Instead, there are two comparatively decent guests today for the inevitable discussion on the Senate Intelligence Committee report.

    GORDON McLAUCHLAN: They’re seriously BAD DUDES!….What sort of people could even DO torture? They’re psychopaths. That’s what they are!
    JIM MORA: Hmmmm….

    What sort of people would do torture? Well, here’s a tentative answer: People with an empathy deficit, i.e., people who laugh at the plight of political dissidents being hounded into exile, then make fun of them when they fall sick. People who guffaw at the death of an officially designated enemy. People like…. well, Michelle Acourt was too polite and discrete to say anything, but perhaps she was casting her mind back a little bit…..

    Open mike 08/03/2013

    Open mike 14/06/2013

    Open mike 20/08/2014

    Open mike 10/07/2014

    Open mike 24/06/2014

    Open mike 15/06/2013

  21. Rodel 23

    Watched question time in parliament.
    Saw Seymour (ACT) and Key using the disgusting terms “human capital’ to refer to working people.Seymour obsequious and fawning, Key arrogant and obnoxious.

    Key an awful person just doesn’t give a shit about people except his Tory mates.
    And English.. ‘I’m making good progress’ is just a liar.

    • b waghorn 23.1

      Dairy farmers quite often call there workers ,the people that slave away to make there money ‘labour units’ and there land that supports all life a ‘milking platform’ we’re becoming cold little apes us humans.

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