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Open mike 13/01/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 13th, 2011 - 41 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

It’s open for discussing topics of interest, making announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

Comment on whatever takes your fancy.

The usual good behaviour rules apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

41 comments on “Open mike 13/01/2011 ”

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      Quoting first article

      This, he says, means that we will need to find ways to counter excessive fluctuations in world prices so that imports are not hindered.

      At which point it all falls down due to Peak Oil pushing prices up as well as massively hindering the import/export model.

  1. Is there any conservative right wingers over here? I know that apart from redbaiter they are very rare to find at kiwiblog. Oh well, why vote for the current crop of shit.

    • ZeeBop 2.1

      I heard conservative right wingers are all down the blood bank giving blood or something, something about being washed out, tapped out, under water, out for the count, bleeding. I could be wrong.

  2. aj 3

    I think some kudos to Anna Bligh over the ditch, for her grasp of the issues and her skill in handling the flooding.

  3. Tigger 4

    The McDonalds blocking gay sites issue is being spun by McDs as being over but it’s not. You can still apparently access the National Front website but not the site of the Gay Auckland Business Association (which is utterly G-rated). You can buy porn from Trade Me as well. And the wi-fi doesn’t mind you going to a discredited organisation that claims it can stop you being gay…

    Facebook has a page McDiscrimination which lays out some of the media here…

    • Lanthanide 4.1

      They’ll be using off-the-shelf content filtering provided by a firewall/router vendor, most likely. These devices have broad categories of what you can filter on, and likely they turned on the “adult content” one, and *possibly* the “gay and lesbian issues” one.

      The problem is, they probably should be filtering a lot of adult content out, but as usual with web-based filtering attempts there are innocent sites being filtered that shouldn’t be. Without substantially upgrading their filtering method (eg paying $$$ to get software that is much more finely controlled) they’ll have to filter sites manually themselves. When you’re talking anything about the internet, manual operations quickly become out of hand and expensive, if not unreliable.

  4. Colonial Viper 5

    UK Police Agents Infiltrate Peaceful Environmental Protest Groups Over Years – And Has Sex With Members To Get Intel

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/jan/11/undercover-officer-sexual-tactics

    Giving details about how Kennedy gained her trust and slept with her many times over the course of a year, Anna, 26, said she felt “violated” by the actions of the police officer.

    She now questions whether the British police have allowed a string of undercover agents to use sex as a “tactic” to disrupt and glean information about environmental campaigns.

    A foreign national who has been active in the environmental movement throughout Europe, Anna said she met Kennedy in 2005 when she was 21.

    • The Voice of Reason 5.1

      Crikey! Hopefully, he had bad sex with someone in Copenhagen and he too can be vigorously pursued by the Swedish prosecution service.

      • QoT 5.1.1

        VoR, I’m going to assume you’re simply working off outdated information and not knowingly perpetuating flagrant lies which handily contribute to a culture of intimidating rape complainants.

        Recommended reading, now with 100% less Stuff Made Up By Assange’s Lawyers

        Kate Harding: Some Shit I’m Sick of Hearing Regarding Rape and Assange
        Sady Doyle: On Dude Progressives, Rape Apologism and the Little Guy
        Me: On rape culture

        • The Voice of Reason 5.1.1.1

          Assume whatever you want, QoT. It was a joke. Assange isn’t a rapist, BTW. He’s not even accused of rape, let alone convicted of it.

          • QoT 5.1.1.1.1

            Wow, VoR. So you’re not only happy to make “jokes” which make incorrect and offensive implications about real rape allegations, you’re also happy to pretend I said something I didn’t to avoid owning your own actions.

            I can’t think why we have such low report rates for sexual violence with stars like you around to belittle women’s reports of their experience and believe misinformation at face value just ’cause the accused is cool.

            • The Voice of Reason 5.1.1.1.1.1

              There are no formal rape allegations against Assange. I do not think he’s cool, I think he’s a smug little shit, who has used his fame and lifestyle to get free food, sex and accomodation for the last few years. Much like yer average pop star or celebrity does. I also think he’s pompous to the max, something he’s clearly got in common with you.

              Fundamentally, I just think he is innocent until proven guilty.

              Righto, you’ll have to excuse me now, there’s a cold wind blowing and I really need to throw another martyr on the fire.

    • Colonial Viper 5.2

      Yep and there’s more. Apparently the UK police has large numbers of infiltrators in peaceful protest groups, and they all feed intel on protestors to the “National Public Order Intelligence Unit”.

      Today, police chiefs discussed the unfolding crisis at a meeting of the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo), which has limited company status and to which Kennedy and Officer A were seconded.

      It is now believed several undercover police officers have been living long-term in the environmental movement, feeding intelligence back to the National Public Order Intelligence Unit (NPOIU), an Acpo body that runs a nationwide intelligence database of political activists. After concerns were raised about the accountability of NPOIU, police chiefs came up with a plan to move the unit to Scotland Yard. Subject to agreement, the unit will be taken over by Met officers next month.

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/jan/12/second-undercover-police-officer

  5. Tigger 6

    Superb piece on Palin’s ‘poor me’ video.
    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL1101/S00042/william-rivers-pitt-poor-poor-sarah.htm

    What a whiny, little mouthpiece that woman is.

    • Judge Holden 6.2

      She appears to be saying that anyone attacking her for her violent political rhetoric is inciting violence, but her violent political rhetoric could not possibly do this. I doubt whether her supporters will see the contradiction.

      It’s a shame really, because this incident and her classless, whiny response to it have probably finished her political career. She would have been a truly excellent Republican presidential candidate for the left.

      • The Voice of Reason 6.2.1

        It should be the end of her career, but, who knows? Still, if even one Tucson victim sues, it’s gonna be tough for her to campaign at the same time as defending herself against a contributory negligence charge.

        Nixon, 1973: “I am not a crook”

        Palin, 2011: “I am not an accessory to mass murder”

  6. Pascal's bookie 7

    The answer to “too big to fail” will never be ‘let them fail’, because no politician will take that risk.

    http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2011/01/virtually-all-independent-financial-experts-say-that-the-size-of-the-big-banks-is-hurting-the-economy/

    The answer can only be ‘break them up’.

    • higherstandard 7.1

      That site’s comments policy is magnificent.

      “Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data, ability to repeat discredited memes, and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Also, be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor even implied. Any irrelevancies you can mention will also be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.”

    • Colonial Viper 7.2

      I suggest PB that all basic banking services be considered a public service utility to be run by the Government not-for-profit.

      All investment banking and securities trading services shall be walled off from those basic banking services. Like hedge funds, if multi billion dollar investment bank goes under, no one will care, it should only register on P3 of the business news.

  7. Deadly_NZ 8

    Hmm A question even if you wanted to go to Macca’s, the food is awful. The last time i went the chips were cold and taseted like they had been cooked in old oil and as I went after midnight (they were the only place open and they KNOW it) when I complained they just shrugged their shoulders and just carried on and a complaint to the management system (please lave a message and we will get back to you) I am still waiting for them to get back to me, so I rang them and there is NO record of my initial complaint. So really you would be best to keep away from a company that don’t seem to care for it’s customers . And to hell with the free internet if you want that go to a library or anywhere on the welly waterfront, most starbucks, ( and no I don’t live in a city if I want internet i have to pay for it.)

    And really if you want to eat healthy Keep away from these grease palaces and cook at home. At least you will know what is in your food and who prepared it, And as a former fast food resturant manager I KNOW what they can and do get up to.

    • M 8.1

      Deadly, the fry shacks might be strong swimmers now but PO will finish them off and NZ can stop gaining several pounds every day.

      I worked at BK when my kids were younger and echo your warning of not eating at these places, after all who wants to be poisoned – lord knows there’s been enough e coli cases in the US from these joints.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1

        Most of the standards at McDs are to prevent food poisoning. The food is cooked to certain temperatures to ensure that most bacteria are dead. You’ve got more chance of catching anything from home cooking.

        That isn’t to say that such poisoning cases don’t happen – they do, but please look at the procedures of the places that it’s occurred at first rather than lumping them all in the same basket.

    • jcuknz 8.2

      The advantage of McDonalds is that world wide the standard is consistent … it may not be wonderful but when travelling I frequently eat at Mac’s because I know what I will be getting …. and once in a blue moon it doesn’t affect one that much. Usually I go for the bacon and egg muffin for brekies and my only complaint is that lately they have been adding a slice of cheeze which I ask to be removed if I remember.
      Cook at home or eat chinese when out is not a bad policy.

      • jcuknz 8.2.1

        I thought most fish and chip palaces used vegetable oil so peak oil will not affect them except to price as everybody will want the vegetable oil to run their trucks etc.

  8. Draco T Bastard 9

    Pressures on the Paradigm: The Fall of the New Monetary Consensus

    We cannot leave out the parallel developments in finance theory—with its efficient markets hypothesis—and the subsequent deregulation and de-supervision that led to the financialization of everything.

    But to make a long story short: if your theory says that a global collapse is impossible, you won’t see one coming. In truth, as Jamie has argued in his great book, the Predator State, no one outside Chicago and other institutes of the higher learning ever took the free market mantra seriously—outside the ivory towers it was nothing but a slogan, a justification for enrichment of the powerful few.

    And that is just another problem with the free-market mantra – it cannot explain the booms and busts of the capitalist socio-economic system and so it cannot predict what’s going to happen. That failure to predict is what makes it a failed hypothesis.

    Why are we still trying to prop up a failed system?

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Why are our leaders still trying to prop up a failed system?

      Just a minor edit for you DTB.

  9. Carol 10

    So, last week there was some positively spun news about the average Kiwi salary having gone up lately so that the (allegedly) average wage is about $70,000. But does anyone know what is happening with public sector wages, in the context of a government that is pretty anti public services?

    For instance, has there been any follow-up to this report on the potential pay cuts for workers in the new Auckland supercity?

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10659939

    In this July 2010 article there were reports that new recruits were getting paid less than workers who transferred to the supercity from the old councils. So how would this effect any council worker going for a promotion position? How will it effect the pay in the long term, of people who’ve beeen transferred from the older councils to the supercity? Will they get less than cost of living pay rises in the future?

    At the time of the article the PSA didn’t want to make a public statement as negotiations were still continuing over pay and conditions. This makes it sounds like there were some “issues” to be negotiated. Have these negotiations been completed? Have the PSA made any comment about it yet?

    And is this setting a pattern for possible other cities being re-structured as “super cities”? And part of a pattern of attacks on public services generally? Lower wages and worse conditions could mean less likelihood of attracting some of the best employees, with a knock-on negative impact on the quality of public services.

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