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Open mike 12/01/2015

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, January 12th, 2015 - 109 comments
Categories: open mike, uncategorized - Tags:

openmikeThe Authors of The Standard are now in holiday mode. Posting will be less regular and dependant on individual author enthusiasm.

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

109 comments on “Open mike 12/01/2015 ”

  1. Michael 1

    I cannot get enough of Elizabeth Warren (US politician)..a political grassroots movement is having a campaign to get her to run for President.


    “The game is rigged, and the rich and powerful have lobbyists and lawyers and plenty of friends in Congress. We can whine about it, we can whimper about it, or we can fight back. I’m fighting back!”
    —Elizabeth Warren

    Hopefully the left of the US Democratic Party can take back the party from the ‘centrist’ neoliberals. It seems they might be, as even Hillary Clinton has been ramping up the left wing rhetoric: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r12OhGGhOSU (although it is probably just that….rhetoric)


    • i am a huge warren fanboy…

      ..and i have been one/archiving her since april 2009..


      warren is one of the few rays of hope in an otherwise bleak/reactionary american political landscape..

      ..and i defy you to read up on her..and not fall in love with her politics/her as the next president of america..

      ..then we wd see that ‘hopey/changey’ that obama promised..

      ..but failed to deliver on..

      (back in 2010 i said:.'(um..!..can we have one of those please…?…an ‘elizabeth warren’…?..)..’

      • Michael 1.1.1

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UON3X7NhyM Bernie Sanders is another one to watch, the only US politician who calls himself a ‘democratic socialist’..

      • gsays 1.1.2

        hi michael and phillip,
        whenever someone mentions a bright presidential hopeful i cant help but think of bill hicks wee monologue.

        a comic, with such precise, honest wit. still spot on 20 years later.

        • phillip ure

          yep..!..one of (many) hicks’ golden-moments..

          ..if u have not yet bathed in the bill hicks ouvre..

          ..u really should..

          • rawshark-yeshe

            methinks ’tis ‘oeuvre’ as in eggy not as in ‘ouvre’, to open ?? 😀

            (unless, of course, you are launching a new vegan spelling system ? )

    • Skinny 1.2

      It’s high time New Zealand curtails the lobbing activities of the rich, & powerful corporations in this country. Legislation so it is clear and transparent who is using third party public relation firms as lobbyist and why.

       The Greens were mooting a Bill to ensure we have access via a register of who is door knocking Ministers & MP’s. Where is this currently at?  

      • Gosman 1.2.1

        Yes people should be definitely stopped from lobbing. Much better to smash.

        • Skinny

          Start the year as ‘King Dinga Ling’ I see Gosman.

          Speaking of “smashing” yesterday while in the Bay of Islands on holiday we were having a long lunch in Russell, at the Duke of Marlborough hotel. While sitting at a table outside under a tree, enjoying the music and good food. I spied serial gold digger & Auckland town bike Sally Ridge, next door at Commodore Lodge. And out of the shadows steps none other than ‘smash & grab’ elderly investors life savings Mark Hotchin. No doubt hiding out amongst the large foreign tourist crowd, where he can blend in.

           I said to my partner excuse me darling but you may want to step inside to the Ladies, I’ve just spotted scumbag Mark Hotchin and I’m going to call him out ‘loudly’.
           She replied that’s fine do what you have to. I got to my feet cupped my hands to my mouth and roared out in my loudest voice ‘Hotchin you crook’  everyone looked in their direction, Ridge and her partner froze and trying to melt into the wall. Hotchin & his wife done a stuttering dance in the middle of street, not sure whether to duck back into the lodge, deciding to instead slither like snakes along the foot path and bolt around the corner.

           A group of Aussies at a table across from me, that  I met on the ferry on the way across invited me over to see what was up. I explained the sorry saga of Hanover investors.

           A couple of them said they got a good look at him before he slinked off, and would keep their eyes peeled, give him a crack for the investors if they happen across him in their travels. I hope they do, and glad Hotchin’s day was spoilt. 

          Got a nice kiss & cuddle for being me as my partner put. 

          • Karen

            Well done Skinny!
            It’s time all these assholes were publicly called out for their crimes.

          • dv

            Well done Skinny.

          • tracey

            “town bike”???

            you 125 years old skinny that you speak/write like that? What relevance was Ridge to your alleged calling out of Hotchins?

            • marty mars

              + 1 that town bike comment was uncalled for and irrelevant and imo shows immaturity and lack of self esteem.

            • Skinny

              Oh get lost Tracey & Marty, I don’t particular care about your views of standing up for serial leech Ridge, who is quite happy living the high life at others expense. Had Sally any shred of a social conscience she would choose wiser the company she keeps. Full your boots defending the 1% I am happy with my call.

              • town bike means she gets ridden sexually by everyone doesn’t it so your moral outrage is really just a front for the real you who describes someone like that – be happy with your call – but I bet you only make statements like that on the net where no one knows who you are – real man fail bud.

                • Skinny

                  Ok Dr Mars the town bike call wasn’t the greatest I admit, however I remember hearing some of the terrible stories of investors who lost not only their life savings but their home too. I guess the saying ‘your judged by the company you keep” rings true.

                  • mate I cannot stand that guy and if I had my way he’d be in jail – ridge seems to have got… whatever – she’s so far below my radar I just can’t even raise any insult for her.

                    I like your calling them out just didn’t like the bike stuff

                    • Skinny

                      I guess you had to be there Marty, I included Ridge because she was prancing around with 2 bottles of bubbly, sucking up to Hotchen like a stuck up Lady Muck. The Commodore Lodge is a boutique exclusive pad with the intention of being for the elite rich.

                    • Fair enough skinny and once again good on you for putting them on the spot. It’s been a decade since I’ve lived in the big smoke (and even then it was out Muriwai) so I am definitely out of touch with the happenings up there.

          • Murray Rawshark

            Nice one, Skinny. I managed to embarrass Roger Douglas once on Jervois Rd when I was walking my dog. The more uncomfortable these crooks feel, the better.

            • Colonial Rawshark

              Yep. I’m an admirer of the ‘citizens arrest of Tony Blair’ campaign in the UK.

          • Truth Will Out

            And old Allan Hubbard copped the blame for the lot.

            Accused of running a ponzi scheme before any investigation even started, which was proven completely wrong four years later when his investors got 99.37% of their money back.

            But it was done to sink SCF, two years after the Governor of the Reserve Bank advised Bill English NOT to renew the Crown Guarantee, the day after English and Key took office in 2008.

            English ignored that advice, and let the company more than double in size between 2008 and 2010.

            English and Key have good reasons to play that aspect down.

            The only way they got away with it was to blame the old man, who died in the back of a helicopter of a heart attack (fact) more than two hours after the car accident that the media keeps reporting took his life.

            Four days before his day in court to present his evidence against the Crown.

            7 weeks before the 2011 election.

            And his lawyer, who took more than $5 million in fees from him and his widow while never uttering one public statement in their defence during the entire 15 month media trial they endured (without even so much as a warrant or court order to allow it), allowed the Crown to have Hubbard’s medical records, autopsy report, as well as all of his evidence against the Crown suppressed by the Courts at the Crown’s request, very shortly after his death.

            And then accepted the position of Crown Solicitor when offered the job by Chris Finlayson, a few months after his former client’s death.

            Ensuring he will never be giving evidence against his former (deceased) client’s accusers.

            How very convenient.

            And Key influenced public opinion on the matter numerous times while Hubbard was “under investigation”.

            Key is also on record admitting that the Crown will recover more than $1.2 billion from sale of the assets out of the SCF receivership.

            Of course, it could have been a lot more, if the guy who lives across the road from him hadn’t pocketed more than $100 million in profit from the purchase and sale of one of those assets alone (Scales Corporation).

            No doubt there will be numerous examples like that one.

            But we have no way of knowing, because Key and English won’t allow any inquiry into the asset sales process, citing “commercial sensitivity” as their reason.

            In spite of the fact that taxpayer money was used the subsidise the shortfalls.

            So in other words, most of the money was recovered, at least 75% of it anyway.

            But Allan Hubbard was a “poor manager” according to Key, English, their cronies, and all of the other clowns who fell for their scam.

            So, if Hubbard was a poor manager, how come most of the money was recovered in every business he ran, in spite of their accusations against him.

            A poor manager compared to what?

            Hanover – where the investors got nothing?

            And Hotchin got caught with his pants down paying Cameron Slater to discredit the head of the SFO, Adam Feeley?

            The same Adam Feeley who never interviewed Allan Hubbard, even once?

            The same Adam Feeley who was also caught with his pants down giving copies of Hubbard’s biography away as “booby prizes” at an SFO xmas party, while Hubbard was still “under investigation”?

            While Hotchin roams free, with no consequences whatsoever for his actions, and Watson lives the high life in London and elsewhere?

            David Cunliffe pledged a judicial inquiry into all of this in November 2011.

            It’s about time Labour lives up to that pledge.

            I bet it will make Sky City look like kindergarten by comparison.

        • tracey

          cos those are the only two choice

      • vto 1.2.2

        Is law-making a public process in New Zealand?

        If so then yes absolutely there should be complete disclosure of all lobbying…

        If not then non problema – secret lobbying of politicians by the rich is all good …

        So is law-making a public process in New Zealand? Simple question

        • gsays

          hi vto,
          i cant help but observe that with the idecent amount of urgency used by this regime, policy making is not a public process therefore status quo continues.

          ms rich can keep the supermarkets doing what they want,
          and mr banks charter schools are here to stay, etc etc.

          • tracey

            have they, in fact, used more urgency than previous governments? There must be stats on it somewhere?

            • gsays

              here is a quote from a study from the law foundation and victoria university centre for public law.
              “The study found a marked reduction in the use of Urgency since MMP. Pre-MMP single-party majority governments introduced around twice the number of bills under Urgency, on average, than multi-party governments since then.

              Two exceptions to this general trend were the National-led Governments in 1996-99 and 2007-10, when Urgency was used more frequently.”

              the study was done 1987-2010.

  2. Sanctuary 2

    Work has ruined my holiday 🙁

  3. Colonial Rawshark 3

    Lindt Cafe siege victim Katrina Dawson may have been killed by police fire

    Makes me think that being rescued by the SAS is always a better bet than any civilian police unit…


    • Bill 3.1

      I don’t know too much about fire-arms and their respective power etc, and I’m not wanting to get into a game of speculation, but I did raise my eyebrows somewhat when it was reported that – “A police officer whose face was sprayed from a gunshot is also in a stable condition, he’s been discharged.”

      • Andrew 3.1.1

        shotgun, lots of tiny pellets. being hit in the face with the main body of pellets out to about 40 to 50 yards would most certainly kill you, but as the pellets spread out even at close range there are some on the periphery that you could be hit with and be ok albeit sore.

      • Te Reo Putake 3.1.2

        The seige gunman used a shotgun, Bill, so presumably the cop was hit by the spray of shot. The further away from the gun, the wider the spread of the shot. Similar injuries happen to duckshooters every season, but in those cases, it’s probably karma 😉

  4. OhMyGodYes 4

    Sky City.

    What a scam.

    From this day forward, I shall refer to John Key, the National Party, and all of their supporters as Banana Republicans.

  5. saveNZ 5

    Speaking of Freedom of Speech – here is a heart wrenching account of a photojournalist who has been imprisioned in Egypt without charge….

    GUEST BLOG: Mahmoud Abou Zeid – 500 days in detention – See more at: http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/12/26/guest-blog-mahmoud-abou-zeid-500-days-in-detention/#sthash.5Q7GyKzF.dpuf

    In recent months, Al Jazeera’s #FreeAJStaff campaign has done a fantastic job highlighting the imprisonment of four of its staff in Egypt. But few people have heard of Mahmoud Abou Zeid, a twenty seven year old Egyptian freelance photographer, who is being held in the same prison complex.

    Mahmoud, known professionally as Shawkan, has been detained without charge since 14 August 2013.

    Please sign on Facebook.


    Perhaps as a gesture of ‘Freedom of Speech’ the world can unite like they have for the victims of the Charlie Hebdo magazine and actually look to actively help those journalists who are imprisioned just for covering the news.

    Similar to how the world was captured by the maturity and compassion of the #IllRideWithYou, a hashtag after the Sydney hostage attacks. (which later turned out to be a construction, but the thought was there).

    How about actually doing something useful to show some sort of solidarity with all religions and for freedom of speech like amnesty for Journalists?

    • Rosie 5.1

      Yes, Al Jazeera have been consistent with their efforts raise awareness of their detained staff in Egypt and help their case, although this has only ever been a faint blip on the radar here in NZ. Seeing as JK has come over with his promotion of “freedom of expression for the fourth estate” buzz of late, maybe he would like to offer his services and put his money where his mouth is.

      Not sure what the Aussies are doing to get their Aussie Journalist freed.

      I had noted on Al Jazeera they had a facebook campaign going, but that’s me out, as I’m not on facebook.

  6. Rosie 6

    Er, folks is this really Peka Peka beach or have stuffed.co.nz been really distasteful and used a stock photo for their caption “Woman recovers after father drowns”.


    Can any locals from the Horowhenua determine whether this is your beach? Last time I was up at Peka Peka it did not look like that. It’s a west coast, lower north island grey sand beach with a wide shoreline. The photo looks like a more typical east coast golden sand beach.

    I know, Not the scandal of the day but I’d feel fairly insulted if I were a family member of the deceased and the news site that runs the story of your beloved’d death are too lazy to get a photo of the real beach.

      • weka 6.1.1

        Looks like they’ve changed the FP photo to one of police tape.

        The two kids playing on the beach photo with the actual article is kind of weird. Do they normally use photos like that?

      • Rosie 6.1.2

        Yes, thats the image karol. It was with the headline.

        And, the other photo used in your second link, looks more like it could possibly be Peka Peka, as that coastline often gets massive bits driftwood washed up.

        But like weka, I find that one a bit odd too. Children playing in driftwood as the backdrop to a drowning. Not a very sympathetic image.

        • Rosie

          OK. They’ve changed it again. They now have an image on Kapiti Island accompanying the story. That is the correct landmark for Peka Peka and more appropriate.

          • karol

            Is someone on Stuff reading TS?

            • weka


            • Rosie

              Lols. That’s what I wondered.

              • Anne

                weka’s “spooky” comment reminded me of your story Rosie about 9 -12 months ago where someone hopped out of a car and took a photo of your letterbox.. jumped back in again and drove off. By your own admission it was a very ordinary letter-box. Did you ever get to the bottom of it?

                • Rosie

                  Hello again Anne. No we never got to the bottom of it. I still have no idea what it was about. It was at the time PPO was starting to fire up it’s “Hey Peter!” campaign in Ohariu. Maybe it had something to do with that or maybe it was a complete random act of weirdness.

                  Lol, on election day however, a scrutineer with a National Party rosette shot me a withering look from across the way when I announced my name. Her face said “oh, so you’re the one that writes mean and horrible letters to our local paper about our lovely Peter and our lovely Brett (Husdon, who got into parliament on the list) That was just funny.

                  Less funny was the time last year when I had a sun umbrella up outside in an unusally breezeless day. I went out in the car for 10 minutes and came back to see the umbrella broken and leaning up against the fence.

                  And more menacing but less mysterious is the stories from a resident who has been a whistleblower in regard to the underhand dealings of the developer, whose development we live on. He has been followed, on foot and in the car, he has been threatened and he has been verbally abused by contractors who work for the developer. He has contacted the Police in each instance.

                  I’ve only met this person in the last month but I do suspect that those thuggish types incorrectly assumed I was in league with him with as I have openly challenged the developer too. We are the only people who have. Maybe they are the ones who took the photo. Maybe they are the ones that broke the sun umbrella. I don’t know

                  • Anne

                    Sounds like there could be a link to your experiences. Years ago when I was a whistle blower, I had mysterious things happen to me. A smashed window… garden implements disappeared. I was out all day once and came home to discover my old cocker spanial staggering around the back garden with a broken leg. Vet told me it wasn’t an accident. That wasn’t all that happened either but I was too frightened to go to the police because the matter involved a government department. As it turned out, I suspect now the culprit(s ) were not linked to that department but I didn’t know that at the time.

                    • Rosie

                      I’m really sorry for your experience and that of your dog. The attack on your dog I can only imagine would have been beyond upsetting.

                      Going by previous post’s, it’s sounds like you’ve had a number of unwelcome and quite frightening experiences throughout your life, as a result of speaking out. I think once you mentioned a family link, and that they had been targeted too.

                      I really do hope your life holds a greater sense of security and safety now, than it has previously.

                    • tracey

                      Anne and Rosie

                      You know things like that don’t actually happen in NZ 😉

                      I had my own intro to the dark arts through a client i represented called Paul White. he (and therefore I) went toe to toe with Citibank in the early 90’s. I was only 24, but I learned fast that NZ wasn’t this cutsie-pie little place of integrity and innocence that so many believed. Where there is money to made their is dirt, and loads of it. I believe to this day Mr White was murdered.

                    • Murray Rawshark

                      Blogging perhaps keeps us a bit safer, because it leaves a record of what we’re doing and what happens.

                    • Rosie

                      Bloody hell tracey. That’s big league stuff. It’s sad that it doesn’t surprise me

                    • Anne

                      Rosie @3:39pm (no reply button)

                      Oh yes, that part of my life was from the late 1970s through to the early 1990s. Once I left the public service things settled down. I have no fears for my safety now.

                      Edit: to tracey. Yes, from my own knowledge of the time and experiences, I suspect White was murdered too – perhaps by way of spiking his drink.

                  • Murray Rawshark

                    National saying “our lovely Peter”. Giving the game away a bit aren’t they.

                    Years ago when I was sometimes on the other side of the tracks, a largish friend of mine got heaps of work from landlords, developers and other businessmen. He never threatened anyone, nor did he do anything illegal. He’d be paid to stand across the street and look at someone, or knock on their door and ask for directions. Seemingly innocuous stuff, but all designed to intimidate. Sounds like you might have something similar happening.

                    • Rosie

                      “National saying “our lovely Peter”. Giving the game away a bit aren’t they.”

                      I should have been clearer. The LOOK on her face said………..The scrutineers didn’t verbalise anything, just a a moment of recognition at my name and then the venomous look. I ran a number of letters in our local rag critical of Dunne, and challenged Brett Husdon to come up with evidence for his lies about National’s “achievements”. It was designed to be provocative, and get people talking (it didn’t) It certainly got the goat of the scruntineer though.

                      Re the developer. This person I am talking about in the neighbourhood has reported the developers shortcomings on several occasions to the council. He has a wad of communications with the council and with the developer as thick as a bible. The most recent breach of consent was in December but the breach prior to that cost one of the contractors $1300 in fines. So this person is disliked and intimidated – that much is clear.

                  • greywarshark

                    There are some amoral men (and a few women) in NZ. I remember when I expressed disgust at the type of man who would be shooting in a forbidden area and so shoot and kill a nature lover while she cleaned her teeth outside a hut. He thought she was a deer.

                    The reply from some thug was to make excuses and generally imply I was a bad sport. The ability to consider others, feel devastated if hurting others, is not regarded as normal apparently. So there is a determination to get what you want in this type, and any hindrance may result in damage or tragedy and is entirely the fault of the person involved, it’s just the way the cookie crumbles when he steps on it.

    • Macro 6.2

      Can’t see the photo now Rosie – but reference to Peka Peka reminds me of racing motorcycles there 40+ years ago :). As I recall it was a long ,wide straight beach of grey sand very similar to all the beaches north of Waikanane to Foxton. (it had to be long a mile down and a mile back was the race track.)

  7. here ya go..fill yer boots..!..(one ‘for the ladies’..)

    ..it’s up @ whoar..

    ..but i thought it wd be cruel not to post it here too..

    ..it’s too good..!

    “..BitchTapes: Enjoy 200+ feminist mixtapes..

    ..BitchTapes curates woman-centric mixtapes..”



    • Rosie 7.1

      Maybe I’m too old skool, but I still feel uncomfortable being referred to as “bitch,” even in the slang. Maybe I haven’t understood the new affirmative meaning of it. I dunno. Maybe someone can enlighten me.

      • karol 7.1.1

        I’m not comfortable with the word being used to put women down – kind of has connotations of irrationality, witch, and evil female power.

        But it does seem to have been re-claimed or reworked in an ironic way to affirm positive female assertiveness.

        Probably depends on how it is used.

        • weka

          @ Rosie, it’s a subculture thing, and probably an age thing too, although I’m nearly 50 and it makes sense to me. Hmm, maybe it’s not so much about age as it is about the era (mid-90s on).

          The bitchtapes are made by Bitch Magazine.

          B-Word Worldwide, doing business as Bitch Media, is the nonprofit organization best known for publishing the magazine Bitch: Feminist Response to Pop Culture. Bitch Media’s mission is to provide and encourage an engaged, thoughtful feminist response to mainstream media and popular culture.


          The history page is worth a read.


          • Rosie

            OK this makes sense. Bitch as a positive term for an outspoken woman. From the bitchmagazine link you provided weka:

            “The writer Rebecca West said, “People call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat.” We’d argue that the word “bitch” is usually deployed for the same purpose. When it’s being used as an insult, “bitch” is an epithet hurled at women who speak their minds, who have opinions and don’t shy away from expressing them, and who don’t sit by and smile uncomfortably if they’re bothered or offended. If being an outspoken woman means being a bitch, we’ll take that as a compliment. We know that not everyone’s down with the term. Believe us, we’ve heard all about it. But we stand firm in our belief that if we choose to reappropriate the word, it loses its power to hurt us.”

            Well said and well explained

            I guess in a way that relates to a conversation I had the other day with someone (IRL)who called me a stirrer, for the activities I under take.They meant it as an insult. My reply was “well, if a stirrer is some one who tries to make a positive difference, then a stirrer I am. Thank you noticing”.

        • weka

          “Probably depends on how it is used”

          I agree. Like most words that have a loaded history.

          • tracey

            Is it a bit like “nigger”? It depends who uses it? If a black person calls a black person “nigger” some (all?) are ok with it… same with a girl friend calling her pal “bitch”? I dont know, I am getting too old to have any idea really.

            • phillip ure

              i’m calling a p.c.-police-alert! on the use of the ‘n’-word..

              ..as a white person i wouldn’t use it..

              ..in any form..

              ..it has far too much baggage..for me to use..

        • Rosie

          It’s not a word I’d ever use, towards another woman.

          On the other hand I’ve heard it as a greeting – in the positive. Up at the local shops a teenage girl greeting a group of her friends “what’s up my bitches?”.

          On new Years Day some people went by our house and yelled out “F*cking Happy New Year bitches!”. I was outside in the garden, visible to the street.

          Not sure if overly festive hungover young un’s being er, friendly, or an actual threat of some kind.

          As for high profile example of female power I often think of one of my favourite artists, M.I.A. I don’t think I’ve heard her use “bitches” in the positive sense, or at all She’s a great word smith so probably goes for something more unique.

          • phillip ure

            but how about that music..?..eh..?

            • Rosie

              Haven’t checked it phil. Don’t feel down, just haven’t had time AND I’m talking a day off beats and listening to Concert FM.
              (Speaking of MIA though, I feel inclined to do a little pre dinner MIA blast later on)

              • it’s a resource..to be archived..and dipped into @ will..

                ..that’s what i’m doing with it..

                ..plus there are some people i will send the link to..

                ..who will enjoy/make use of it..

                ..that’s one of the reasons i love the internet..

                ..sites like that..

  8. ScottGN 8

    I wonder if it was totally co-incidence that on the day that the Herald puts up the first of David Fisher’s two part analysis on the SkyCity-Stephen Joyce Convention Centre debacle that SkyCity itself gets headline billing on the paper’s corporate spin vehicle Brand Insight to tell us all how vital the Convention Centre is?

    • karol 8.2

      Probably not. However, it is a very good piece by Fisher. Shows how Joyce and Key operate apart from anything else.

      Fisher’s article has more public visibility. Haven’t seen the other one.

    • Clemgeopin 8.3

      I am more annoyed with the people, who, in spite of being aware of the various dodgy dealings of the National lot, STILL elected them to power!

      • Paul 8.3.1

        Self interest

        All to blame

      • tracey 8.3.2

        and who use the xcuse “there is no viable alternative” to make themselves feel better for giving us these cold self interested misguides..

        • BassGuy

          That’s the one that really annoys me.

          Someone I work with told me that John Key is “for my money, the best prime minister we’ve ever had,” and that Cunliffe presented no alternative because he had no experience doing anything.

          I’ve since learned that this particular person has quite a lot of money hidden away in real estate investments, so that’ll be why he thinks that.

      • KJT 8.3.3

        Don’t think it was National that won the election so much as Labour lost with their unprincipled wishy washed-ness and power struggles.

  9. Draco T Bastard 9

    On Charlie Hebdo: A letter to my British friends

    A wave of compassion followed but apparently died shortly afterward and all sorts of criticism started pouring down the web against Charlie Hebdo, who was described as islamophobic, racist and even sexist.

    As a Frenchman and a radical left militant at home and here in UK, I was puzzled and even shocked by these comments and would like, therefore, to give you a clear exposition of what my left-wing French position is on these matters.

    • Ergo Robertina 9.1

      Great link, Draco.
      ”To conclude. I firmly condemn the bombing of Middle-Eastern countries (or any country for that matter) by Western governments. I vote for political parties that condemn it, and I demonstrate against it. I was shocked when such demonstrations were outlawed by the French government – but happy when the same government recognized the Palestinian state. In these demonstrations, I walk with people of all colours, origins and religious creed – we take a political, not a religious stand. And I despair to think that a fraction of the population of my country refuses to regard me as their ally because I am no friend of religions. Being aware of the root causes of the madness that took hold of these young people, I detest politicians who have done nothing to resolve the deliquescence of the banlieues, to fight routine discrimination and control police persecutions. These issues play as big a part in my view in the rise of fundamentalism in the French youth as do events in the Middle East; that is why, had I been in France today, I do not know if I would have wanted to march together with Angela Merkel and David Cameron – much less with Netanyahu and outright Nazis such as Viktor Orban.”
      ”Charlie Hebdo promoted equality, liberty and fraternity – they were part of the solution, not the problem.”

      • Kiwiri - Raided of the Last Shark 9.1.1


        And these bits too:

        “Equality is meaningless in times of austerity.

        “Liberty is but hypocrisy when elements of the French population are being routinely discriminated.

        “But fraternity is lost when religion trumps politics as the structuring principle of a society.”

        • greywarshark

          Quote fr Kiwiri –
          “But fraternity is lost when religion trumps politics as the structuring
          principle of a society.”

          Something doesn’t fit there. Religion or politics as structuring principle of a society? Really don’t both of them need to have a principle behind them first. It could be called respect for each other and the land, and a commitment to live and be prepared to share doing as little harm to others and the land as possible.
          Then build the religion and politics onto that principle.
          (Google – Principle –
          a fundamental truth or proposition that serves as the foundation for a system of belief or behaviour or for a chain of reasoning.)

          • Ergo Robertina

            grey – I suggest reading the full link – it’s a long piece, but an excellent read, It will put that quote in context.

            • greywarshark

              @ Ergo R
              Okay will do. But that query I raised stayed in my mind. And I listened to Slavoj Zizek talk about the approach to the apocalypse and how things will change to end the present ways. He mentioned three approaches. One mode of thinking is the technological one, one is the new age people and one the fundamentalist religionists.

              He went on to talk about China proceeding determinedly with genetic experimentation and that there is no oversight from a public that is largely kept ignorant of it. I think he said they plan to reach into every home.

              The unprincipled use of genetics by powerful groups, country’s dictators, very rich people etc. Here is a case calling for principles. Whose though, who chooses and applies them? Who is the watchdog and can the people by and large be arsed to do some thinking about it?

  10. weka 10

    On the subject of the value of twitter, sometimes I see a tweet that really moves me. As micky mentioned in the media freedom thread, good tweets require a command of language to get the message across in only 140 characters and some people just nail it.

    This morning it was this (h/t blue leopard),

    douglas brodoff ‏@brodoff 21 mins21 minutes ago
    @guardian STOP calling 10 yr old Nigerian girls suicide bombers. A child cannot be a suicide bomber. They are being murdered!

    Which was in response to this,

    The Guardian ‏@guardian 2 hrs2 hours ago
    Two suspected child suicide bombers attack Nigerian market http://trib.al/6iqGBPb

    https://twitter.com/guardian/status/554368739853213697 (with others calling out The Guardian on their use of the term).


    • dv 10.1

      They are actually child bombs.

    • tracey 10.2

      Thanks for this weka. I have been wondering about this labelling too.

      BTW hang in there. I admire your stickability and ability to communicate your view in the face of sometimes provocation and frustration.

      we don’t always agree, and nor should we, but i have built a strong admiriation for you, someone I don’t even know.

    • marty mars 10.3

      sometimes the horror of what some people do hits home – this story has really slammed me – I also note that stuff is still calling these children “suspected child suicide bombers” as if that even makes sense – young lives destroyed by adults, destroyed by hate and intolerance, too much, far too much – just modern cannon fodder for the zealots on both sides – those that murdered these children and those that would demonise them.


      The tweet was very good – thanks for that

      • tracey 10.3.1

        I dont believe people are born hating… that is a learned thing. And anything learned can be unlearned.

        The ultimate child abuse is what a child “suicide bomber” is… not just by those they act for but the society around them…

      • weka 10.3.2

        Hard to imagine what Stuff would do if it were here, but I suppose that’s the point. Terror is something that those other people do.

        Marty, thanks for the tautoko recently, much appreciated 🙂

  11. Brutus Iscariot 11

    I see the Police are now persecuting Uber. The war against progress never ends…

    • Colonial Rawshark 11.1

      Shame about a company which hasn’t done its homework on local laws and regulations, and thinks that it alone should receive special treatment and be immune.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1.1

        They aren’t alone.

        Sky City, Warner Bros, Oravida, can you see what the problem is? Uber forgot to pay protection money.

        • Colonial Rawshark

          or the taxi association did.

          • phillip ure

            the taxi industry has spent up large on p.r.-trouts/spin-merchants..

            ..all of these ‘bad-uber’ stories popping up in the press..(as in any low-level crime that has any relationship to an uber-driver..from anywhere is the world..(!)

            ..makes the front-page of our daily-rags..?

            ..throttle back boys/girls..!..

            ..it’s getting a tad too blatant/obvious..eh..?

  12. tracey 13

    and they MUST have known what he was going to say when they booked him…

  13. Penny Bright 14

    FYI folks.

    Upcoming public meeting in my old home town – Carterton – where I’ll be giving FACTS and EVIDENCE which prove what a $UPER RIPOFF has been the forced amalgamation of Councils in the Auckland region – where 8 democratically elected Councils have been swapped for 1 supposedly democratic Council and 7 undemocratic, unelected ‘Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs), run by unelected, appointed business people, in order to ensure that the Auckland region is run ‘like a business, by business, FOR business’.

    (Which is why a very small group of us opposed the Auckland $UPERCITY – literally from day one.)

    For the majority of citizens and ratepayers, rates have sky-rocketed, as has Auckland Council debt, while Council services have been reduced, and ‘democracy’, ‘transparency’ and ‘accountability’ have plummeted.

    Who has benefited?

    ‘Follow the dollar’ – except that you can’t – because ‘the books’ are NOT ‘open’, and the ‘devilish detail’ to which citizens and ratepayers are lawfully entitled under the Local Government (Rating) Act 2002, the Public Records Act 2005, the Local Government Act 2002, the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 – is not being provided.

    (Which, as some of you may know, is the reason why I have disputed and refused to pay rates? 🙂

    Be lovely to meet some folk from the Wellington region – there will be plenty of time for questions.


    When: 7.30pm to 9pm, Friday 23rd January 2015

    Where: Carterton Memorial Club 35 Broadway


    Speaker: Penny Bright

    Penny grew up in Carterton and is now an Auckland resident with a colourful character. She is presenting facts and evidence about the Auckland Super-City and what this has meant for the majority of Auckland citizens and residents.

    Penny calls herself an “investigative activist” and uses the electoral process as an effective way to campaign for open, transparent and democratically accountable local and central government. She has taken a stand by refusing to pay her rates since 2008 because Auckland City and now the Auckland Super-City cannot tell her how her rates are being spent which is a legal requirement under the Local Government Rating Act.

    Penny stood:

    For the Auckland mayorality in 2010 and in 2013 polling 4th with nearly 12,000 votes.
    For Epsom in 2011 versus John Banks
    For Helensville in 2014 versus John Key
    Penny is one of those brave souls who is sacrifiing her own time to fulfill what she considers is her public duty to ensure that we have open and transparent democracy.

    For more information: Bridget Evans b.p.l.evans@gmail.com This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.”> ……….


    Kind regards

    Penny Bright


  14. Colonial Rawshark 15

    “Labour win would lead UK to ruin”

    Ahhh the classic Tory line now spun by David Cameron: you cannot trust Labour with the economy and to deal with the debt problem, which means less money for schools and hospitals.

    Labour, because it buys into the neoliberal economic and monetary orthodoxy, has no come back to this.


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