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Open mike 11/03/2023

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 11th, 2023 - 60 comments
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60 comments on “Open mike 11/03/2023 ”

    • Robert Guyton 1.1

      The hunger-to-watch created by the furore will be intense 🙂

      It'll be the Tories and the farmers who won't be able to turn away from the screen, so desperate to spot political bias.

    • Jenny are we there yet 1.2

      Speaking of a media outlet losing its marbles. Kremlin mouthpiece RT has published a weird daydream about a Russian take over and the Ukraine government doing a US Vietnam or Afghanistan type flight from their own capital.

      Like that's ever gonna happen. But you can always dream I suppose.

      The American exit from Kabul might be taste of the future for officials in Kiev

      10 Mar, 2023 18:41


      • Bruce 1.2.1

        It may be not to far from the truth, as the russians are reporting that the UK are suffering such shortages because of their support that they are hunting and eating squirrels. / sarc. This is a good video for the tankies just to show what they support. I don't think it will change their thinking but it lays out pretty clearly just what they are.

      • mikesh 1.2.2

        Like that's ever gonna happen. But you can always dream I suppose.

        They probably said the same thing about the withdrawal from Afghanistan … until it happened.

        • Jenny are we there yet

          The key word here being "withdrawal". The war in Afghanistan and Vietnam ended with the invader's withdrawal. Without the invader's withdrawal those wars would still be going. Just as the war in Ukraine will end with the invader's withdrawal, and won't end, until the Russians do withdraw.
          Simple as that.

    • Roy Cartland 1.3

      That is utterly pathetic, so much so that it must be some kind of abuse or corruption. Scared if rw backlash?! WTF, it's info that's needed more more than ever.

    • Mike the Lefty 1.4

      The BBC are also demoting sports broadcaster and former football star Gary Lineker because he dared to voice criticism of the Conservative government's new policy on asylum seekers.

      The political right obviously has a lot of power in British media.

  1. Ad 2

    Go get a copy of Fear: New Zealands Hostile Underworld of Extremists by Byron Clark.

    Very up to date.

  2. Sanctuary 3

    I tell you what, nothing brings home climate change like driving for 45 minutes to five different stores to get hold of some limes for my cocktail party tonight.

    • Roy Cartland 3.1

      What does? Wasting so much carbon for something so decadent? I guess you could look at it that way, but I wouldn't feel too guilty about it.

    • roblogic 3.2

      Bring on Peak Oil. Can't come soon enough. Had a gutsfull of ICE vehicles.

      Last year, my Commodore died (steering, timing chain, transmission: would have cost $7500+ to fix).

      Then I got a Mazda, which died in December (turbo shat itself and destroyed the engine, bye bye $19K).

      Now I'm borrowing a diesel Peugeot, which decided to crap out on the motorway, losing power steering, ABS, god knows what else.

  3. weka 4

    Dylan Mulvaney is a high profile, recently transitioned trans identified male, TRA, who specialises in promoting stereotypes about women.

    Gender identity ideology is regressive and harms women and girls.

    • Visubversa 4.1

      Understandable when your view of women is so much of a sexist stereotype that you think that putting on a frock and doing tampon advertisements makes you a woman.

    • miravox 4.2

      Is promoting a women's place is in the kitchen super acceptable now that Dylan is a [hashtag] Kitchen Aid ambassador?

      A whole generation of feminist work to fight for women to be accepted as fully-capable humans broken on a marble benchtop.

      • weka 4.2.1

        we can be grateful I guess that he's moved on from tampons 😑

        • miravox

          I think it's worse than that. I think KitchenAid is being utterly cynical in creating content by manufacturing outrage. Most feminist (I would guess) aren't interested in that ad existing – not because its a transwoman fronting it, but because it's so regressive and stereotyped – so it's not like they're taking a valued job or anything.

          If that ad had appeared with a famous female influencer – feminists may have criticised the ad on the 'taking us back to the 50s' vibe but really, no-one would have cared much – they've heard it all before – maybe there would be a standard npn-apology for a minor publicity boost.

          But with a transperson fronting the ad, the same feminist criticism would be 'anti-trans' and create screeds of column inches and social media discussions while everyone decides what the ad means and what we should be angry about. people will be banned, blocked and hated, academics would write their things.

          And KitchenAid will sit back and watch its top 10 trending and take the sales when the furore has died away.

          Utterly manipulative.

          • weka

            that's a really good analysis, thanks.

            • miravox

              It might be a bit cynical – but generally when I see something prevocative like this these days, I assume it's a deliberate plan to create social media noise.

              I must do some researching on it, but it just seems so like the Bannon-type messaging, I think more than just a few unscrupulous marketing departments have taken notes.

  4. pat 5

    MoWD 2.0

    "The need for some such agency is, I think, undeniable. The current debate over consultants has revealed how hopelessly, cravenly reliant modern government is on the Deloittes and Chapman Tripps of this world. The state has been hollowed out in recent decades, losing expertise, wisdom and savvy. One of the worst examples came in Kaipara some years back, where, following the grotesque failure of a wastewater project, it became clear the local council was so short-staffed it couldn’t even manage its contracts with private providers – let alone build anything itself."


    Only problem is it will take a decade or two to regain the required capabilities….as with most solutions, the best one is not to create the problem in the first place.

    Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

  5. Jenny are we there yet 6

    Georgia drops foreign agents law after massive protests


    TBILISI, Georgia (AP) — Georgia’s parliament voted Friday to drop a foreign agent registration bill after the legislation, which opponents warned could be used to stifle dissent and curtail media freedoms, prompted tens of thousands of protesters to swarm the capital this week.

    Lawmakers voted 35-1 against the bill during a session that lasted just four minutes and featured no discussion. The vote came less than a day after Georgia’s ruling party, Georgian Dream, said it would withdraw the legislation…

    ….Protesters in Tbilisi said the bill was inspired by a similar law in Russia that has been used to silence critics. They rallied outside the parliament building despite being met with tear gas and water canons.


    Similar to the claim made by supporters of Russian imperialism, that the popular revolt against Russian ally Victor Yanakovych who fled to Moscow, was a Western backed coup.
    Russian leader Fyodor Lukyanov, chairman of the Presidium of the Council on Foreign and Defense Policy has likened the Foreign Agent Law protests in Georgia, as a Western backed plot.

    As another ex-Soviet state is gripped by violent protests, is a Ukraine-style coup on the cards?

    RT 9 Mar, 2023 10:38

    …internal pressure from a restive minority is backed up by external pressure from the EU and US.

    They claim that the government is colluding with Russian President Vladimir Putin, as former Western-favorite Saakashvili languishes in prison. The fact that Moscow’s influence, in this case, is completely fictitious is irrelevant. The Russian issue is too deeply embedded in Georgia’s political consciousness.

    A Maidan-style overthrow of the authorities is unlikely; there are no real hardline forces, such as those seen in Kiev, in the opposition. The main front now will be external – EU and US pressure to force Tbilisi to abandon neutrality and the authorities’ ability (or inability) to evade it. Their resources are limited…


    The Russian imperialists do not recognise the agency of the people of either Georgia or Ukraine to determine their own destiny.

    The real question;
    As another ex-Soviet state is gripped by huge protests, is a Ukraine-style invasion on the cards?

    • woodart 6.1

      what would the russians use to invade georgia ? they are reduced to scrounging from nth korea! for shells ,and are running short of warm bodies. 30 yrs of corruption has hollowed out the russian military .

  6. Jenny are we there yet 7

    "History never Repeats I tell myself before I go to sleep." Splitenz

    East Germany thrived on snitching lovers, fickle friends and envious schoolkids

    Newly unearthed secret files from the former German Democratic Republic reveal how easily we can betray others.

    Peter Wensierski

    Dec 23, 2015 – 12.15am

    Everyone knows about the Stasi and the extent to which it spied on the East German populace. But that was only a small part of the informing that went on. New research shows that snitching was vastly more common than previously thought….

    …..they were totally normal citizens of East Germany who betrayed others: neighbours reporting on neighbours, schoolchildren informing on classmates, university students passing along information on other students, managers spying on employees and Communist bosses denouncing party members…..


    History repeats

    Mass Backstabbing Spree Over Putin’s War Sweeps Russia

    Noor Ibrahim

    Sat, March 11, 2023 at 9:52 AM GMT

    Many of those jailed after being reported by other citizens were charged under Article 20.3.3 of the Code of Administrative Offenses of the Russian Federation, a new law signed by Putin last year criminalizing “public actions aimed at discrediting” Russian Armed Forces…..

    ….cases detailed in the Vrestka investigation include complaints made against Russian citizens for playing a Ukrainian song in the car while driving, drunkenly making pro-Ukrainian statements from a balcony, and criticizing the war in private conversations with friends at a coffee shop. The individuals who made the complaints allegedly include eavesdropping neighbors, coworkers, and janitors.

    In many of the cases, according to the outlet, little to no evidence was provided by witnesses who reported the alleged violations.


  7. joe90 8

    Another conflict brewing in the South Caucasus.


    Developments can move in two very different directions in this geopolitical transformation of the South Caucasus. One features a stalemate in the war in Ukraine, a gradual recovery of Russian strength and a deepening relationship between Moscow and Tehran. The outcome would be to counter the growing influence of Azerbaijan. Russian peacekeepers would reassert control over the Lachin corridor. Iran would begin sales of weapons to Armenia, notably the Shahed-136 drones, and the Zangezur corridor would be stalled. The longer-term investment would be aimed at promoting the north-south transport corridor that has long been favored by Russia and Iran.</em>

    The alternative scenario features a defeat for Russia in Ukraine and effective sanctions against Iranian exports of weapons. This would embolden Azerbaijan and Turkey to push through the Zangezur corridor, to further erode Russian influence in the South Caucasus and to shut Iran out of the region. It is worth remembering that during the 44-day war in 2020, Azerbaijan not only shelled targets in Nagorno-Karabakh but also targets inside Armenia proper. It remains in a position to do so again, and Russia may be too weak to prevent it.

    The outcome if Turkey and Azerbaijan emerge as winners would be infrastructure investment that is geared toward providing energy from Central Asia and the Caspian basin into Europe. There would be many winners. Turkey is only too happy to become a major energy hub. The European Union has already courted Baku for gas while dialing back criticism of Azeri human rights abuses. And the U.S. would be happy to see Russia pushed out. It does look like the most likely outcome.


    • woodart 8.1

      good post. pretty much all of those countries hate the russians , and like cockroaches , they never leave ..

  8. joe90 9

    But Fifa are considering doing a U-turn on Saudi sponsorship of Women's World Cup …


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  9. weka 10

    For the feminists in the room, but also applies more generally to online debate culture and kaupapa.

    • roblogic 10.1

      Some people think "being kind" means allowing trans identified males to punch women in the face.

  10. Belladonna 11

    An example of the desire for intensification gone crazy.

    Developer in an upmarket inner-city suburb in Auckland wants to redevelop a single site to build 11 town-houses on a known flood plain (heavily flooded during the Jan downpour).

    The 'plan' is to build the houses over sacrificial garages (basically designed to flood – though the developer denies this). [my sarcastic single quotes]

    He claims that the existing stormwater infrastructure is sufficient – even though it wasn't in Jan this year, and his proposal would cover the whole of the site in concrete – further reducing any capacity for rainfall to be stored in the ground.

    The only interest the developer has is in building and selling these for as much profit as possible – he'll wind up the company immediately they are sold, so there will be no way to make him culpable for downstream consequences.


    The common sense approach, as I see it, would be to red-sticker this site, and use it for effective flood mitigation landscape planning for drainage of the surrounding area. It might, or might not, be possible to run a kindy on part of the site (the existing use is a daycare centre)

    • Graeme 11.1

      So the developer bought a cheap site next to the creek, and it looks like Council might be going to restrict what can be done with it to a point that there's no way they are going to get their money back.

      So, they come up with a plan to maximise return with something that really won't be marketable until people forget about the flood risk to increase the site's value when Council have to step in and buy the property.

      That said, sacrificial floodways are a very long-standing urban design strategy. Live in a flat subdivision and the building platforms are meter or two above the street, probably wouldn't leave your car on the street when there's a big rain coming, that street is probably designed to flood to buffer loads on the stormwater system down stream.

    • joe90 11.2

      Sink or swim. Homes built to weather floods exist in the Netherlands, Australia, US Gulf states and other places. Why not here?

    • Cricklewood 11.3

      The approach isn't without merit, makes alot of sense to build on piles or above garages getting the living spaces at least 1m above ground would save plenty of heartache.

      • Belladonna 11.3.1

        Well, if that's intended to be the NZ-wide solution to climate change: "just build up" – then it would be really good for the Government to articulate it.

        Personally, I think not building in already identified floodplains, especially when they've already been flooded – is a better solution.

        And, even better, if the Insurance companies came out and said that new houses built on floodplains will not be insurable for flood/water damage (you can, of course, still insure for fire and theft).

        I'd guess that would make the vast majority of the potential high-risk builds uneconomic (banks wouldn't lend if no insurance, and most people wouldn't buy)

        ATM, the Council is hamstrung by the current legislation, and the knowledge that developers will take them all the way through the Environment Court in order to get building consent.

        We need a country-wide legislative framework to address these climate risk issues.

        • Shanreagh

          Belladonna this is fine stuff.

          It is chicken or egg really but if you won't be able to get ordinary home insurance on a dwelling then it matters not whether the house is built on stilts or piles or hung from a slow low hovering helicopter!.
          It seems less wasteful to say no and base good planning on geographic features now rather than let people find out yet again that the house they have built/paid mortgage money on is either washed away or flooded and then is not capable of being insured. Why have the second step of having 11 poor homeowners demonstrating ‘yes those flood plain maps were correct, yes the 2023 flood results were demonstrative of 2023 realities?’.

          Perhaps 'someone' should buy this land back or allow some sort of tax credit to the developer if it is made a reserve never to be built on. This would need to be fair.

          • woodart

            if your house is registered as a boat(why not, tiny houses get round council housing rules by being classified as caravans), then maybe you could get boat insurance? it wont be cheap, boat stands for >bring out another thousand..but if you need insurance for a mortgage, it may be a way around the problem.tiny houses need wheels,towbars and be blocked up, not on solid piles, to be classified as a motor vehicle. what would a house need to be classified as a boat? a life preserver and a name?

            • Belladonna

              Well, to satisfy insurers and bank managers (who aren't as thick as you seem to imagine) – it would actually need to be a boat.

          • pat

            If the site has insurance issues (and consequently finance issues ) there is only one 'someone'…joe public.

            At what point does Joe public say, 'nah'?

  11. weka 12

    The first Australasian Let Women Speak event is about to start in Sydney at 2pm NZT. It should be livestreamed here,


  12. Visubversa 13

    Good to see that Helen White has been selected as the Labour candidate in Mt Albert.

    Helen has lived in the Electorate for over 30 years and is well known in the area for her work with local organisations. She also has worked as an Employment lawyer – representing working people.

    She has great Labour values and obviously has good support from the local Electorate Committee.

    • lprent 13.1

      Means that there is a very good Labour candidate Camilla Belich who contested the (extremely hard for Labour to win) Epsom electorate last election available for somewhere like (ummm) Auckland Central that Helen White missed on in the last two elections.

      Why do I think that this is important?

      That 3-way split is a problem in Auckland Central. In 2017, Helen lost it to Nikki Kaye from the Nats by 1581 votes. In 2020 lost it to Chlöe Swarbick by 1068 votes. with the National candidate less than 2000 votes behind.

      So Auckland Central is in the position of having a 3-way split in the candidate vote.

      But here is the thing for a number person like me. Look at 2017 vs 2020.

      Chlöe Swarbick's excellent campaign raised the green candidate vote by about 10,000 votes – and the Green party vote just by about 2800 votes.

      This suggest to me that as a campaign, the Greens and Chlöe expended quite a lot of resource in getting a electoral candidate and failed to gain a solid a base in Auckland Central.

      Helen White expended effort on gaining party vote – the kind that all parties under MMP actually need.

      Ok – some numbers followed by argument..

      Green candidate vote in 2020 – 12,631
      Green party vote in 2020 – 6,937

      Green candidate vote in 2017 – 2,838
      Green party vote in 2017 – 4,170

      Labour candidate vote in 2020 – 11,563
      Labour party vote in 2020 – 16,751

      Labour candidate vote in 2017 – 11,617
      Labour party vote in 2017 -11,340

      National candidate vote in 2020 – 9,775
      National party vote in 2020 – 7,680

      National candidate vote in 2017 – 13,198
      National party vote in 2017 -11,773

      As a party, even one that I'm not affiliated with, but who goes into arrangements with my normally preferred party, I get worried by that.

      Under MMP, smaller parties that wind up dependent on electoral seat tend to wither and die.

      Now I'm sure that the usual party electorate crap that usually goes around electorate seat wins for minor parties will be running around the Greens. That it provided a base for growing the party vote. The problem is that isn't what you see with NZ's now rather large MMP history.

      But again, that isn't usually what happens. What happens is that party vote is across the whole country with relatively minor variants. The party resources get sucked into defending an electorate seat, and eventually they lose both the seat having lost the party vote long before that.

      The only known long-term exception has been NZ First who actually became a better party after Winston Peter finally lost Tauranga. They refocused on a national campaign and won seats by list votes. I have a strong suspicion that they will do so this election – despite Shane Jones.

      You could argue that Act is working against that. But that is too early to tell. National were so crap after the 2017 and especially during the pandemic that there was a lot of what I call protest votes going from National to Act. The Act candidate usually gets between 5x to 10x the Act party vote they get out in Epsom, The Greens usually get larger party votes than Act does, and they're far more consistent.

      In 2017, Act as a party got 0.5% party vote and the Greens got 6.3%. In 2020 Act got 7.6% in mostly protest votes against National. But the Greens got a consistent 7.9%.

      It will be going to be interesting to see if Act can pivot from running mostly a single electorate campaign to running a national campaign this election, and if the Greens get sucked into defending and electorate at the expense of their national campaign….

      I'll write a post after the election. 😈

      • woodart 13.1.1

        dont know whether the greens have to defend anything. mother nature is waking everybody up to the greens message.crappy weather turns everybody into socialists. I think act will be defending the 5% limit, as nervous nats again, dither and return to default setting. I really think nzfirst is done. they might huff and puff, but its wasted votes .

        • lprent

          mother nature is waking everybody up to the greens message.

          Sure, Doesn't mean that voters are any more likely to vote Green. In fact, I'd almost bet that it does exactly the opposite. Everyone covered in disasters loves havinga sanctimonious Jeramiah laughing at their misfortune rather than being constructive and useful to the commonweal.

          crappy weather turns everybody into socialists

          Yes. But frankly the Greens simply aren't that much more socialist than either Labour or National or NZ First when it comes to disaster relief. So you're really just contrasting the Greens (and every other party in parliament) to Act.

          I really think nzfirst is done. they might huff and puff, but its wasted votes .

          Do you have any idea how many times I have heard that in the last 30 years? And how many times that people relying on that have face planted themselves into a custard pie. To me, a statement like that indicates just indicates a idiot commenting on the demographics of protest politics.

  13. joe90 14

    It’s not the crime, it’s the coverup.

    The obstruction part of the Trump documents investigation is centered on Trump’s incomplete compliance with a subpoena in May that demanded the return of any classified-marked documents in his possession, after documents he earlier returned to the National Archives included 200 that were classified.

    In June, Corcoran searched Mar-a-Lago and produced about 30 documents with classified markings to the justice department and had another Trump lawyer, Christina Bobb, sign a certification that attested to compliance with the subpoena “based on the information provided to me”.

    But the justice department, according to court filings, developed evidence that more classified-marked documents remained at the resort, as well as “evidence of obstruction”. And when the FBI searched Mar-a-Lago, they found 101 such documents in a storage room and in Trump’s office.


  14. Belladonna 15

    Tamati Coffey announces that he will not stand in 2023.


    Given that he'd already been selected as the candidate (with no opposition), this strikes me as a bit late in the piece – though, I suppose, better now than later in the year.

    Almost certainly going to gift the Waiariki electorate to TPM's Waititi – who would I think have held it it any case – he seems to have strong electorate support.

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