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Open mike 13/10/2013

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, October 13th, 2013 - 215 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy). Step right up to the mike…

215 comments on “Open mike 13/10/2013”

    • miravox 1.1

      The second sentence means I don’t need to read any further, I know what’s coming. Actually because it’s Damien Grant I know reading any further is a waste of time (unless he’s had an epiphany – 2nd sentence show’s that’s unlikely).

      So to save others time, 2nd sentence …

      First, if someone wants to sell you their labour for $14 an hour and you choose to pay them more, the difference is charity.

      Then blah, blah, blah…. it’s unfair that people should be paid a living wage from our rates [the end].

    • Rogue Trooper 1.2

      “truth is the sort of error without which a definite type of living entity could not live”.- Nietzsche
      (double 7’s if anybody is card counting).

  1. AsleepWhileWalking 2

    According to this article best we not look at abortion law lest we get something even worse! – Really?? How about we challenge for a better law anyway?


    • QoT 2.1

      Fergusson’s study is old news and also incredibly unconvincing – I blogged about it back in May:

      ETA: Oh, and fuck Dame Linda Holloway and her “from a prochoice position it doesn’t matter”. Pregnant people have to jump through hoops, travel long distances and wait longer than necessary to have a very safe medical procedure? What could be wrong with THAT?

      • NZ Femme 2.1.1

        QoT, haven’t seen anything any thing written about the pro-life TV ads I’ve been seeing on TV2 over the past week; wondering if you’ve seen them? I caught one last Monday night sometime between 11.00pm and midnight. Young woman (actor? dunno) talking about becoming infertile after an abortion. Another one Thursday night, same timeframe, young woman saying not having an abortion stopped her from self-harming (cutting).

        I’ve been trying to find out via the pro-life websites who’s behind them, but not having much luck.

        • QoT

          I’ve seen some Facebook discussion of them but so far I’ve not caught them on TV myself. But I do have a prochoice post coming up this week!

          The ads appear to be from Voice for Life, formerly SPUC, which was heavily financed by the Catholic Church back in the 70s.

  2. Morrissey 3

    Interesting things they keep off the News
    No. 1: Guantanamo Bay captives


  3. muzza 4

    Very soon, every American will be required to register their biological property
    (that’s you and your children) in a national system designed to keep track of the people and that will operate
    under the ancient system of pledging. By such methodology, we can compel people to submit to our agenda,
    which will affect our security as a charge back for our fiat paper currency.
    Every American will be forced to register or suffer not being able to work and earn a living. They will be
    our chattels (property) and we will hold the security interest over them forever, by operation of the law
    merchant under the scheme of secured transactions. Americans, by unknowingly or unwittingly delivering
    the bills of lading (Birth Certificate) to us will be rendered bankrupt and insolvent, secured by their pledges.
    They will be stripped of their rights and given a commercial value designed to make us a profit and
    they will be none the wiser, for not one man in a million could ever figure our plans and, if by accident one
    or two should figure it out, we have in our arsenal plausible deniability. After all, this is the only logical way
    to fund government, by floating liens and debts to the registrants in the form of benefits and privileges.
    This will inevitably reap us huge profits beyond our wildest expectations and leave every American a
    contributor to this fraud, which we will call “Social Insurance.” Without realizing it, every American will
    unknowingly be our servant, however begrudgingly. The people will become helpless and without any hope
    for their redemption and we will employ the high office (presidency) of our dummy corporation (USA) to
    foment this plot against America. – Colonel Edward Mandell House

    The above statement was made to Woodrow Wilson, approximately 100 years ago!


    Ugly Truth, who posts occasionally, attempts to inform on how the fraud is achieved, and routinely gets blown off.

    Those who blow off the posts, need to start to read up, quickly!

    • joe90 4.1

      ♪ ..prison planet … ♫

      • locus 4.1.1

        succinct and right on target as usual joe90

      • muzza 4.1.2

        What’s Prison Planet Joe?

        If you’re talking about the way vast swaths of the worlds peoples are living, like an open air prison, then you would be in the right direction. Is that what you meant?

        Perhaps your could present a case against the text, hows about you give that crack!

        Locus, if the best you have to offer is to concur with whatever J90 was on about, you need to try harder.

        Perhaps offer forward some thoughts comments, a rebuttle even.

        • Pascal's bookie

          Sure. There are questions that need to be answered though.

          1) Where’d the text come from? Not just where did you found it, but how do we know it is legit. when did it first surface, and where, is it verified as being what it claims to be. There are plenty of texts lying about the place claiming to be significant, but with no provenance, ie, they just surface in odd places in ways that make it impossible to tell if they are real, or fabrications.

          2) What happened next? For the text to be significant, even if we believe it be legitimate, we need to know what influence it had. That influence has to be shown in law. Birth certificates are legal things, with their purpose written into law. This text makes claims about what they do, but those claims will only be real if they are reflected in the laws about birth certificates.

          Those are the obvious questions that need to be answered first up.

          Have at it.

          For “1” I’d like to see the document referenced as to where and when it was supposedly written, and how it surfaced.

          For “2” we need to see that context of the document, what effect did it have. Did Wilson reply for example, where there others involved in the debate? And we need to see what is written in the law to text if the claims made about birth certificates reflect what actually happened.

          • McFlock

            Given the context of Wilson’s presidency, it appears to be a rant against the Federal Reserve that morphs into equating social welfare with fraud and possibly slavery. As found on nutbar conspiracy sites, according to google.

            • Pascal's bookie

              Yeah, there’s horde of them.

              I first came across this stuff in discussions about the 90’s militia movement. Ruby ridge, waco and all that jazz. “Sovereign citizens” and the like. Post-McVeigh they all got the scares and folded up their tents to an extent, I guess when someone started things off they decided that, well, someone else should carry on but they were all too busy sitting on their hands and saying it was just a hobby, and a theory, and never you mind.

      • Murray Olsen 4.1.3

        Exactly, but I try not to feed them.
        “Massa, the sugar cane is cut” – said to George Washington by the overseer on his Manassass sugar plantation.

    • Hi Muzza

      The process of redemption involves a change of legal status from a human being to a man or woman. Human beings are always persons and have lower status than men or women. Humans suffer from universalism, which implies that they think that everyone is like them. For them equality under the state is the highest virtue.

      The relationship between the state and humans is much like the relationship between deity and people. The state protects humans from harm and they petition the state when they think that their needs are not being met.

      The realm of the state and the realm of deity are disparate. While the state may pay lip service to deity, it is fundamentally secular. The diffrerence between law and rules is that law is ordained (or consistent with what is ordained) while rules are purely secular constructs. Since the state has removed the connection to deity, the rules of the state do not constitute law. The state assumes the role of deity when it gives its legislation the name of law.


      • Pascal's bookie 4.2.1

        UT, are laws revealed, or discovered by way of observation?

        • Ugly Truth

          PB, natural laws (eg the physical laws) are discovered by observation.

          • Pascal's bookie

            The diffrerence between law and rules is that law is ordained (or consistent with what is ordained) while rules are purely secular constructs. Since the state has removed the connection to deity, the rules of the state do not constitute law.

            I was obviously asking about these ‘ordained’ laws. How do we know which are laws that are ordained, and which are rules made by the state?

    • Draco T Bastard 4.3

      The problem is that UT has a habit of ranting on what is complete bollocks – usually about the law and how it was 500 years ago and why it shouldn’t have changed despite the fact that people have been having problems with the law going back thousands of years (Debt: The first 5000 years, David Graeber).

      • muzza 4.3.1

        Is that the same Graeber who was involved with occupy?

        And yes, you can see that the agenda was put into action many thousands of years ago, and is entirely responsible for the current state of the world we live in!

        Just because you can’t wrap your head around it Draco, does not make it bollocks!

        The point is, the controllers are getting away with their plans somehow, and what are the key mechanisms which enable the agenda

        1: Controling, writing and enforcing, so called law.

        2: Inventing, owning and controlling, so called money/currency.

        • Draco T Bastard

          I’m quite aware of what’s happening and how our idea of ownership is at the heart of the problem. Thing is, UT usually says that we need to go back to the way things were around 500 years when things were actually worse. We have, over time, corrected some of the worse aspects but we still need to look to the problem of ownership itself.

          • Ugly Truth

            “UT usually says that we need to go back to the way things were around 500 years when things were actually worse”

            I’ve never said that, fool.

            • Rogue Trooper

              “fool” is a fairly generic term

            • Draco T Bastard

              Yeah, actually, you have. Don’t believe me, just go read your comments. And more.

              You’re as delusional as a libertarian.

              • Rogue Trooper

                Time on your hands then (not the devil’s plaything).

                -comment #101.

              • You’re as delusional as a libertarian.

                Project much, Draco?

                Talking about common law is not the same as saying that “we need to go back to the way things were around 500 years”

                • Rogue Trooper

                  personally, i have found your voice interesting…

                • McFlock

                  So you wouldn’t have said that an easy way to return to democracy would be a tax embargo and common law courts?

                • TheContrarian

                  A deluded Draco debates a delusional Ugly Truth.

                  However, after Ugly’s “Aliens controls teh gummints!” rant at Kiwiblog I’d throw my lot in with Draco.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Project much, Draco?


                  Talking about common law is not the same as saying that “we need to go back to the way things were around 500 years”

                  The way you talk about it it is.

      • Chooky 4.3.2

        500 years ago …middle of the Inquisition

  4. miravox 5

    Rodney Hide has cheek!

    Len Brown is good for Auckland. He was the first mayor of a united Auckland and has been re-elected with hardly a ripple of dissent or opposition….

    We need a new box to tick on the ballot. One that says “none of the above”. That would enable voters to say, we don’t care, we just want the elected government of the day to appoint the best people to run our city and region.

    Len wouldn’t even have been elected as mayor for you to opine on whether he’s good for the place, or not, Rodney, if you had your way.

    To add further insult to citizens who elect people like Len, Rodney moves on to Canterbury in a ridiculous attempt to underline a point he failed to make in the first place.

    That’s what’s happened with the regional council in Canterbury. It has a top civil servant, a former top judge, an ex-minister, and business people – a qualified and professional leadership team who can get on with the job.

    It’s a far better team than one would ever get standing for election. It would seem to me that we should have that option in the rest of the country.

    Sorry Cantabrians, you’re useless unless Rodders belatedly agrees with a choice he thinks you are better off for not having. Does he not realise that he just endorsed the mayor people voted for in Auckland in his pronouncement that mayors should be appointed by Rodders mates because the electors pick useless people!

    I’m seriously struggling to refrain from shouting.

    • Paul 5.1

      The Herald uses corporate shills to sell the narrative of the 1%.
      Don’t bother reading it.

      • locus 5.1.1

        agreed Paul, but i got tempted, and though it make me choke to say it… the MSM – and their corporate shills – still influence public opinion

        but just in case anyone else is tempted here’s the two-faced anti-democratic self-serving crap from Hide in the Herald:
        “I would vote if I could tick a box that allowed the government of the day to appoint the best people to run the council. It would save a lot of fluffing around”

    • fender 5.2

      +1 Miravox

      Rodney Hide actually has two cheeks inside his scull where a brain should be.

      “………….we just want the elected government of the day to appoint the best people to run our city and region.”

      What utter crap, makes me want to shout too.

  5. dan1 6

    Cunliffe excellent on the Nation just now. Rachel Smalley desperately tried to nail him but was left floundering. Cunliffe measured and confident.

    • Lanthanide 6.1

      I truly hope the ABCer’s see what a ridiculous cock-up they made of putting up Shearer ahead of Cunliffe back in 2011. Still think Cunliffe shouldn’t have tried to do that double-ticket with Nanaia and that it played a big part of his loss, though.

    • Morrissey 6.2

      Cunliffe looks like Lange did in 1983-4: like the prime minister-in-waiting. The National Party knows that too, hence their hysterical, doomed attempts to portray him as “extreme left”.

      • Pascal's bookie 6.2.1

        Concur. I listened to a speech he did during the leadership stoush with another tab open in front so I wasn’t distracted by the images, and his cadences reminded me very much of Lange.

      • Chooky 6.2.2

        …They will be going for him in whatever way they can to undermine him….The main thing is that he isn’t diverted or panicked by them ( like Helen Clark was by Brash’s speech)…but keeps a steady course to a great victory!!!

  6. bad12 8

    QOT,re: Fluoride, anti science, that’s a matter of opinion, you mean anti-statistical production from those who have a vested interest,

    Christchurch which has never used fluoride in it’s water supply has remarkably ‘average teeth’ when compared with the rest of New Zealand, at times having a lower rate of caries than the average and at times having a slightly higher rate, according to ‘science’ that cannot be true,but it is,

    Looking country on country Iceland with the same number of caries per head of population as New Zealand has never used fluoride in it’s water supply, according to ‘science’ Ice land should have a far higher rate of caries than New Zealand, but they don’t…

    • Lanthanide 8.1

      Sure, if you choose to simply say “no fluoride in this water, therefore we expect differences in dental problems which we aren’t seeing”.

      However fluoride being in just the local drinking water is not the sole factor. For example products that substantially contain water (beverages) that are produced in an area that has fluoride in the water and shipped to areas that don’t, will provide a ‘halo’ effect on those areas.

      Now, looking at the most basic, obvious correlation and then saying “science” this and “science” that, using quotes as if science is somehow at fault, just makes *you* look stupid.

      The truth of the matter is that science, when it comes to studies of human health, is very complex and complicated, which is why we leave it to the professionals, called scientists, and not the average joe on the street.

      • bad12 8.1.1

        Lolz, ‘the halo effect’ now that’s definitely scientific right, tell me what exactly is stupid about (a) comparing the second biggest city in New Zealand which does not dump fluoride in it’s water supply with other cities that do,

        Oh except LOLZ for your halo effect, when did you make up that little gem, just now perhaps,

        So a place like Iceland which has remarkably the same number of caries as the New Zealand average is protected by your ‘halo effect’ is it, LOLZ can you link me to the study that says this,or did you as usual pull the ‘halo’ outta ya anus…

        • QoT

          Yes. And then Lanth travelled through time to 1994 to publish a paper on it.

          • bad12

            So you suggest that Iceland imports one hell of a lot of liquids that they drink, all with fluoride that has been untainted by any effect of whatever it is that the end user drink turns out to be and any manufacturing process that was undergone to reach that end use product,

            Christchurch kids all drink the same amount of what, coke perhaps, as each other, and enough imported liquids to equal the intake of fluoridated water that kids in other places using fluoride in the water do???

            That’s a stretch even of my imagination, i am more inclined to believe that as far as fluoride goes Christchurch kids brush their teeth as much as any other kids anywhere else in New Zealand from whence, if fluoride is of any benefit, they get more than enough to keep their teeth on a par with the rest of the kids in New Zealand,

            Which just brings me to where the biggest problem would be vis a vis tooth decay, South Auckland fluoridated, Porirua fluoridated, the missing link wouldn’t be tooth paste would it…

            • Lanthanide

              “So you suggest that Iceland imports one hell of a lot of liquids that they drink, all with fluoride that has been untainted by any effect of whatever it is that the end user drink turns out to be and any manufacturing process that was undergone to reach that end use product,”

              Actually, I’m suggesting that the halo effect is something that is beyond the obvious “the water supply of this town has no fluoride in it and yet the dental evidence is the same”.

              I’m not suggesting that the halo effect is necessarily in effect in Iceland. Merely that there are many many many compounding factors involved in a complex system like this, and your a priori “argument” isn’t worth bumpkiss.

        • Lath appears to be adapting the term which is directly searchable on Wikipedia:

          And yes, it’s reasonable that a city that doesn’t fluoridate its water inside a country that does could still have average teeth when there are other factors involved, including fluoride content of products produced in other cities. Christchurch could, for all we know, have the best teeth in the country if it DID fluoridate it’s water. Science is not about making simplistic assumptions, it’s far more about painstaking accuracy and research, and thus, as Lanthanide points out, is best left to professionals and the really talented amateurs.

      • Chooky 8.1.2

        @ Lanthanide….except some scientists are bought off, or their studies are flawed and require more evidence….eg ‘science’ and scientists who supported the cigarette industry…..So it always pays to form your own opinion on things, based on the evidence as far as possible…and not just take the “experts” as Gospel…In fact it pays not to take the Gospel as gospel ( eg Inquisition ….as the pagans, heretics and witches on the ducking stools and in the bonfires found out).

        • Rogue Trooper

          hence hermeneutics

          • miravox

            I was reading about Herr Schleiermacher and his circle (or do I prefer spiral?) just yesterday. Will be making use of his work today.

        • Lanthanide

          Yes, very valid point, Chooky.

          However bad12 did not imply any of those things in his post at all, he just seem up a flimsy strawman.

    • QoT 8.2

      Because New Zealand and Iceland, barring fluoridated water, are completely identical in every way.

      … and that’s why I say “anti-science”. I should probably just say “anti-logic”.

      • bad12 8.2.1

        PFFT, try an answer in understandable English wont you, when statistics tell you something other than what you postulate regress into ‘other factors’ that’s laughable,

        What you actually allude to is that other factors in the diet have a far greater bearing on the number of caries than does Fluoride, which in reality when we compare the two countries has FA to do with the number of caries…

        • QoT

          I’m pretty sure my comment was in very understandable English.

          The fact is there are many, many things which are different between Iceland and New Zealand. Climate. Economy. Diet. Ethnic and age differences. Probably very different attitudes towards health and lifestyle factors.

          The “laughable” thing is pretending that we can form any conclusion on fluoride based solely on rates of caries in two very different populations.

          And please don’t try to explain “what I’m alluding to”. Because you couldn’t be more incorrect.

          • bad12

            LOLZ, thats making me snigger, but fluroide so you say is the magic ingredient, you can hide behind such an argument here in New Zealand as well, but as far as the magic ingreedient goes its all simply wallpaper over the holes in your argument,

            The fact is, the claim is, that Fluoride in the water has a marked difference in tooth decay, Iceland and Christchurch say that isnt true,

            You then claim a ‘halo effect’ from imported liquids along with enthnic,age,diet,climate blah blah blah differences as if the American halo effect is not also filled with the same differences,

            Face it, IF fluoride has an effect then brushing your teeth with toothpaste and not rinsing it off would be the efficacious means of delivering such fluoride, the worst teeth in New Zealand are the result of fluoride in the water…

            • QoT

              I’ve never said “fluoride is the magic ingredient”. I also didn’t bring up the halo effect – Lanthanide did.

              It’s cute how you keep arguing against things no one is saying and then making wild statements with nothing to back them up … and then think this is going to make me revisit my opinion of anti-fluoride folk.

              • RedLogix

                You may want to consider that in the city of Wellington the old borough of Petone has never been fluoridated while the rest of the city is. Otherwise they get the exact same water from the exact same source as the rest of Lower Hutt. I know this for an absolute fact. (I used to write the software that controlled it all.)

                This has been a long running and ‘as good as you are going to get’ controlled experiment and I’m not aware of any good data telling us that the dental health, or otherwise, of people who have lived in Petone all their lives is any different to the rest of the city. (If anyone knows otherwise I’d be most interested.)

                Whatever is going on I don’t think dosing the public water supply is the dominant factor anymore. Tooth decay is all about sugar and carbohydrates … not what’s in the water.

                • Rogue Trooper

                  and then, there is the Public Health perspective

                • See that sounds pretty reasonable. Do Petone and the rest of Lower Hutt have roughly similar statistics then? Good to know. 🙂

                • QoT

                  Um … you may want to consider that there isn’t a wall built around Petone which isolates its residents from the rest of Wellington. I don’t know what kind of “controlled experiments” you run where there’s actually no serious separation of the test and control groups, but they don’t sound like any kind of controlled experiment I’d put a lot of faith into.

                  • Lanthanide

                    Exactly my thoughts, QoT. I think realistically you could only hope to go with entire regions that don’t fluoridate water, but even that is doubtful if the halo effect comes into play.

                  • weka

                    “Um … you may want to consider that there isn’t a wall built around Petone which isolates its residents from the rest of Wellington. I don’t know what kind of “controlled experiments” you run where there’s actually no serious separation of the test and control groups, but they don’t sound like any kind of controlled experiment I’d put a lot of faith into.”

                    There are lots of different ways of generating knowledge, even within science. In this case, you could look at the health dental outcomes of a certain subset of people that lived in the area ie the people that were drinking non-treated water. You compare them to the outcomes of the people who were drinking treated water.

                    • QoT

                      Of course you could. But that’s not what RedLogix has asserted. “Drinks only untreated water and only products made with untreated water vs treated” is very different from “Petone vs rest of Wellington”.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      So what the pro-fluoridation lobby are saying now:

                      Improved child dental health in fluoridation areas is due to fluoridation

                      Improved child dental health in non-fluoridation areas is due to fluoridation

                      It’s assanine, the totally unscientific theory of “second hand fluoridation”.

                    • QoT

                      No one’s said that anywhere, CV. We’ve just said that it’s difficult to draw a clear line around populations completely divorced from treated water, so it’s difficult to draw conclusions about the effectiveness of fluoridation.

                      But please, continue today’s trend of reading what you want to instead of what people are actually saying.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      A kid in Christchurch gets dental protection from Coke bottled in Auckland using Auckland water?

                      Not only does it sound ridiculous, second hand fluoridation has no evidence in science.

                    • Lanthanide

                      @ CV: As I replied to you in the other thread, I have *not* posited that CHCH is benefiting from the halo effect. I simply suggested it as a possible reason, to illustrate how flimsy bad12’s strawman was.

                      Also QoT linked to a paper from 1994 that discusses the halo effect of fluoridation. I’m sure there will be more recent studies that have more information, too.

                    • McFlock

                      CV: Is the coke made using fluoridated water? It the kid drinking coke zero?

                      Besides, the chrischurch thing was already done in June. You’re just reinventing the bullshit wheel.

                    • felix

                      “Drinks only untreated water and only products made with untreated water vs treated” is very different from “Petone vs rest of Wellington”.

                      Good thing no-one suggested that then.

                    • QoT

                      @felix: That was certainly how I read RL’s comment:

                      You may want to consider that in the city of Wellington the old borough of Petone has never been fluoridated while the rest of the city is.

                      This has been a long running and ‘as good as you are going to get’ controlled experiment and I’m not aware of any good data telling us that the dental health, or otherwise, of people who have lived in Petone all their lives is any different to the rest of the city.

                    • miravox

                      I dunno, as leftie middle-class person I’m willing to take one for the team and buy one of those new-fandangled water purifier thingies until I know that all poor kids go to homes with usable toothbrushes and toothpaste, parents who have the time and energy to make sure these are used, and when milk is cheaper than coke.

                    • felix


                      I may have misread it, but it looks to me like “and only products made with untreated water” is your own addition.

                    • McFlock

                      Even then the assumption is still a complete isolation of everyone in Petone from everywhere else in wellington, on a long term basis, in order to guarantee any experimental validity.

                    • felix

                      How so?

                      I thought the assumption was that the people in Petone would be exposed to broadly the same environmental and dietary conditions as the rest of Wellington.

                      Perhaps I’ve misunderstood the purpose of the experiment.

                    • McFlock

                      If someone who sleeps in a house in petone spends most of their awake time in wellington or vice versa, that kind of screws the experiment. And it also ignores that there can be massive socioeconomic (and therefore dietary and even environmental differences) differences between suburbs in a city – to put it more bluntly, is petone on the “right side of the tracks”?

                      So one factor serves to muddy the water by bringing the populations closer together, and the other factor might move them apart in a manner independent of water fluoridation.
                      So who knows where the balance would lie. Doable, but increases the cost of the study by an order of magnitude.

                    • felix

                      It’s reasonable to assume that most children who drink tap water are going to get most of it from their home or their school.


                      Again, maybe I’ve misunderstood the purpose of the experiment.

                      (ps the question of which “side of the tracks” is irrelevant unless only one “side of the tracks” is flouridated. I don’t think anyone has suggested that.)

                    • McFlock

                      I have no idea what proportion of metropolitan kids go to school in the same mains water area as their home.

                      Nor, more importantly, do I have any idea whether kids who live in petone but go to school in a fluoridated area are systematically different in family income, dental care, or dietary practise.

                      Addressing those questions is why the cost of the study would be an order of magnitude higher than just comparing school dmftt rates.

                    • felix

                      “I have no idea what proportion of metropolitan kids go to school in the same mains water area as their home.”

                      Does that matter? I’m assuming the long term dental records are tied to the schools.

                      The crucial point though is that the comparison between the two groups doesn’t rely on isolation for validity. It’s not important that some children in Petone are drinking some amount of flouridated water unless you’re analysing individual cases.

                      But like I said, I may have misunderstood the purpose of the experiment.

                    • McFlock

                      Of course it matters if you don’t know how much overlap there is between your case and control groups. It stuffs your entire experiment.

                      How many kids going to schools in petone drink lots of water at their homes in kilbirnie? Or vice versa? You could make the same-catchment assumption in rural schools, but metro areas linked by a decent public transport system? The moh dmftt checks are based on school checks, but the public data is grouped by dhb.

                    • felix

                      I don’t see how that “stuffs your entire experiment” at all.

                      Children who live in a flouridated area and go to school in a non-flouridated area (or vise-versa) will on average be getting less flouridated tap water than children who live and go to school in a flouridated area.

                      But of course I may have misunderstood the purpose of the experiment.

                    • McFlock

                      However you slice it, one group can be assumed to be consuming more flouridated tap water than the other.

                      Well, when one is looking at the effect of a variable that differs between two equivalent groups, it pays to actually know that the variable does in fact differ between groups that are in fact equivalent, rather than just assuming it.

                      edit: oh, there was an edit:

                      Children who live in a flouridated area and go to school in a non-flouridated area (or vise-versa) will on average be getting less flouridated tap water than children who live and go to school in a flouridated area.

                      [citation needed]

                    • felix

                      Yes I edited to make it clear exactly what I’m assuming.

                      Hardly a controversial assumption, is it?

                      I mean I suppose it’s possible that the average child in a non flouridated area drinks just as much flouridated tap water as the average child in a flouridated area, but frankly that’s a bit far fetched to convince me to turn my back on the bleeding obvious.

                      But then I don’t have a barrow to push so I have the luxury of applying common sense.

                    • McFlock

                      I mean I suppose it’s possible that the average child in a non flouridated area drinks just as much flouridated tap water as the average child in a flouridated area, but frankly that’s a bit far fetched to convince me to turn my back on the bleeding obvious.

                      But that’s not the problem with your assumption. The assumption you are making is that there is no cross-contamination between the groups, or at least not enough to make the results undetectable (there are secondary assumptions that the two populations are equivalent in all factors that affect dental health, but the main problem is the cross-contamination).

                      Where do kids drink most of their water, at school or at home? If they drink most of their water at home, then kids who live outside petone but go to school in petone will reduce any detectable difference. If they get most of their water at school, the reverse is true. If it’s 50:50, then that just means that all kids who live in a different group to where they go to school muddy the waters – the ones in petone schools raise petone caries free %, the ones in wgtn schools lower wgtn caries-free%. You need to be able to estimate the effect of any cross-contamination.

                      This is basic shit, one of the first questions a reviewer or conference attendee would ask. You can’t just assume that your case and control groups don’t have cross-contamination – especially when a bunch of them share the same or adjacent school districts.

                    • felix

                      lolz, I suppose it’s also possible that there are no children who go to school where they live too.

                      I’m going to carrie on assuming that’s not the case though if it’s ok with you.

                      “You can’t just assume that your case and control groups don’t have cross-contamination”

                      Pretty sure I assumed they did. But then I may have misunderstood the purpose of the experiment.

                    • weka

                      Don’t see why you can’t just classify different sets of kids when the interviews get done. Kids who live and go to school in an area with untreated water, kids who live and go to school in an area with treated water, kids who who live in an untreated area but go to school in a treated area, etc. You can even just exclude the kids in the last group if it’s a problem.

                    • McFlock

                      Weka, yes, that’s why it’s not a case of just comparing stats as felix wants. A few hundred dollars and spare time becomes interviews and life histories and ethics approval across two school districts, just to see if two schools have a rate that’s different from the district norm.

                    • felix

                      Goodness, that does sound complicated. I guess we’ll never know then.

                      Unless of course we stop pretending that this is about comparing individual cases. But then I may have misunderstood the purpose of the experiment.

                    • McFlock

                      Of course it comes down to cases – every filling is in a single child. But even from a population perspective, you’re talking about a case:control study. And even from a population perspective, you still need to demonstrate that you really have separated two populations, rather than just assuming it.

                      For example, how many intermediate or secondary schools are there in Petone, to get the year8 count? Do they serve more or fewer students than the two primary schools I’ve found? If fewer, do the rich ones with better teeth go to school outside of petone more often than poorer kids, or is it the other way around?

                      Option A: buy a spreadsheet with the data and “assume” that there is no difference, and whack out a quick article in your spare time. Cheap, but utter bullshit.

                      Option B: get ethical approval and parental and school consent to pay multiple research assistants to interview thousands of kids, cross reference them with dental checks, buy a suite of computers and a few analysts to crunch the data, rent office space to put them in, and hire a manager to sort out all the HR stuff. Hundreds of thousands of dollars, but a solid article at the end of it.

                      Option C: anywhere on the front where cost is reduced at the expense of validity.

                      Option D: piggy back on an already running longitudinal stud, if one’s running across wellington..

                    • felix


                      I guess you either missed the part where I said “assume”, or you agree that the two groups can easily be compared if my assumptions turn out to be accurate.

                    • McFlock

                      you agree that the two groups can easily be compared if my assumptions turn out to be accurate.

                      Of course.
                      But without testing those assumptions, the study rests entirely on something that might be utter crap. And if we do test those assumptions, then we are no longer assuming. We have demonstrated it.

                      So we can assume all you want, but with a population that small failure to test that assumption is akin to just throwing the entire study in the bin.

                    • felix

                      My assumptions are as follows:

                      1. Children in Petone do not consume significantly more or less tap water than children anywhere else.

                      2. Children in Petone mostly go to school in Petone.

                      And with those two hugely controversial assumptions noted, I hereby throw the whole study in the bin.

                    • Lanthanide

                      @ felix: science isn’t about controversy, it’s about certainty. That’s why it’s science and not “making shit up”.

                    • McFlock

                      2. Children in Petone mostly go to school in Petone.

                      Are there even any year8 schools in petone?

                      I can’t seem to find any online. Maybe they all go to the Hutt?

                    • felix

                      Lanth, that’s simply not true. There is always a degree of uncertainty in real-world testing. That’s why it’s done on as large a scale as possible rather than comparing the life histories of individual households.

                      McFlock I think by year 8 the children of Petone are all bussed off to Strawman Intermediate. It’s down at at the end of Red Herring Drive.

                    • McFlock

                      Not at all. The 5yo check might have nothing to do with the school, especially if the parents commute and put the kids into daycare near their fluoridated workplace. And if the vast majority then go to school in the Hutt, then basically your confidence interval would be a mile wide because of the small numbers.

                      So for one age you have no idea which population is truly which, and for the other age group you’re not even sure that there’s a test population to count. And you still want to assume that any numbers you can drag out signify anything.

                      You want the largest scale possible? Compare national “fluoridated vs nonfluoridated” data. A couple of thousand kids (if that) in petone will not give you the accuracy you need, and will probably include major socioeconomic differences. Which you’d need to control for, which you can only do if you know what they are, which you can often get by… interviewing households, amongst other methods.

                    • felix

                      If only there were some way of ranking the socio-economic levels of schools against one another…

                    • McFlock

                      Yes, because dep10 accounts for every possible socioeconomic difference between school kids. 🙄

                      Fuck it. School dental checks:
                      Hutt 5yolds: total 1420, non-fluoridated 72
                      Capcoast 5yo: tot2649 NF 16
                      Hutt yr8: tot 1538 NF: 50
                      capcoast: tot:2563 NF 51

                      Even if all the NF were petone, and 3/4 comparisons show the caries free % much higher in fluoridated areas than non-fluoridated, the numbers are so small a 0.8 rate ratio has a 95% interval from 0.63-1.01, and a 0.85 ratio goes from 0.67-1.09.
                      By comparison, the same crunch with the total NZ data yr8 (44k kids) gives a RR of 0.94 with a 95% spread of 0.92-0.96.

                    • felix

                      On the face of it that would seem to contradict what RL posted.

                    • McFlock

                      That’s the impulse, but the numbers are just too small. I mean, it might improve by changing the CI methodology, but it’s beginning to over-play the data.

                      Basically, that’s where the pophealth crowd steps back and the qual and cohort folk walk in, and they’re the ones who isolate specific confounding variables and really get in-depth with lifestyles and other interventions.

    • joe90 8.3

      In a word or two – volcanic gases.

    • NickS 8.4


      Use the search function for this site, I dumped a hell of a lot of science on fluoridation earlier this year, mainly on risk factors. Short version – the concentrations used in water treatment are perfectly safe, it’s only once you hit 0.5ppm that small negative effects are detected.

      Search terms: “flouridation NickS”

      Also – fluoridation effects are lessened when poverty is low and people have high levels of education about dental hygiene and easy access to fluoridated toothpaste. Like say Iceland.

      • bad12 8.4.1

        Do you ‘know’ that Icelandic children have better access to and use more or as much toothpaste as New Zealand kids do,

        Your argument supports the use of toothpaste but is in effect saying that fluoride in drinking water has no effect…

        • NickS


          Warning – significant logic flaws detected in bad12’s post. Recommend rebooting user and exposing to list of formal/informal fallacies.

          • bad12

            Bulls**t, you are the one who implied that Icelandic children have better levels of education about dental hygiene and better access to fluoridated toothpaste than New Zealand kids,

            Even if such were the case it proves nothing about fluoride in the water, except to say that it’s pretty much useless seeing as they don’t put the stuff in their water, then again Icelandic kids may live in the ‘halo world’ where they drink only imported liquids that have been made with the addition of fluoridated water…

            • NickS


              Teh stupid, how it burns:

              Your argument supports the use of toothpaste but is in effect saying that fluoride in drinking water has no effect…

              Until you can actually work out why the above is wrong, I wont be bothering with you.

              And it’s _very_ obvious. So obvious even I could grasp it on no sleep and no caffeine :3

              Yet you’ve gone off on a tangent on Iceland, a tangent that Lanth, QoT and McFlock hath already dealt with. It would be infuriating, if I hadn’t seen a thousands times before with creationists, climate change denialists etc. Now? It’s just amusing.

              • Rogue Trooper

                ahhh, caffeine, was proposed a while back for admission to the DSM…Axis 1 😀 (Team Jesus).

              • bad12

                That’s frigging gut bustingly funny, the fact that Iceland which has never fluoridated its water is dealt with by those you name by claiming without a shred of evidence differences in diet blah blah blah,

                Or even funnier ‘the halo effect’ where supposedly Iceland must import and feed it’s kids one hell of a load of coke or something,

                The simple fact that you and others claim that Iceland with the exact same %of caries as this country achieves that not by water fluoridation but by some other magical means including diet blah blah blah is an admission on all your parts that fluoridation has sweet FA to do with dental outcomes…

                • Lanthanide

                  bad12, you’re clearly not engaging with what people are actually saying. Which is disappointing.

                  There comes a time when everyone should admit that there are other people that know more about a particular topic than themselves. Which is what you should be doing now.

                  • NickS


                    It’s also obvious he hasn’t bothered digging up the stuff I suggested, despite the fact I’d linked to a variety of papers not locked behind paywalls, as otherwise he’d have found the review article on fluoridation efficacy and be using it 🙄

                  • bad12

                    Lolz, funnier still, if all sorts of other factors except fluoridation in the drinking water lead Icelandic children to have teeth just as good or bad as New Zealand kids have with fluoride in the drinking water, then it’s obvious to most except you of course, that ‘the all sorts of other factors’ must be more important to the outcome than fluoride is,

                    Lolz, i just luuuurve the reeking of ego that your little statement imparts, your we know more than you so shut up is an excellent tool of debate used by Nazi’s everywhere,

                    i have cited but two places, Iceland and Christchurch, Red Logix cites another, there are of course a zillion other’s even befor i link you to science which debunks any that you or other’s have offered up in support of fluoride,

                    The worst kids teeth in New Zealand???Porirua and South Auckland, both have fluoride in the water, if ‘other’ factors are at work there then that simply tells us how ineffective fluoride is in the drinking water,

                    Kids in Christchurch, just as good teeth as the rest of the country, No fluoride in the drinking water, you lot say Christchurch kids must drink lots of ‘imported water’ from other places with fluoride in the water,

                    Yeah right, what is it they are importing and drinking which has lots of fluoridated water in the mix, coca cola???vodka???…

                    • TheContrarian

                      Iceland has a higher natural concentration of fluoride than NZ.

                    • Lanthanide

                      There are so many fallacies in this reply alone that it’s not worth my time bothering to reply to them because I know you won’t engage.

                      Your loss, not mine.

                    • bad12

                      Lolz, yes honestly the sense of loss is palpable, oh by the way kids in Christchurch with better teeth than those in Porirua and South Auckland, no fluoride for the former but in the water for the latter,

                      Hence having fluoride in the drinking water doesn’t produce better results for kids teeth, carry on with dispensing the man’s propaganda for them tho wont you…

                    • McFlock

                      ever consider that Porirua kids teeth might be even worse without fluoridation, b12?
                      Dental health might have a pretty strong relationship with income, for example.

      • Paul Campbell 8.4.2

        (remember 1 liter of water weighs 1kg)

        Nick I tried to explain it to someone this way recently – water is fluoridated at .7mg/litre while LD50 of fluoride is 32-64mg/kg of body weight (let’s be conservative and say 32) -so to get a dose that high you’d have to drink 45 litres of fluoridated town water for every kg of your body weight

        Water is considered one of the least toxic of chemicals, it has a :LD50 of 90g/kg of body – you are going to die of water poisoning long long before you die from drinking fluoridated tap water

        • Colonial Viper

          You may be well meaning, but using an LD50 is mad and irrelevant.

          water is fluoridated at .7mg/litre while LD50 of fluoride is 32-64mg/kg of body weight (let’s be conservative and say 32)

          Fluoride is clearly and measurably neurotoxic at 1/10 or 1/20 or less of this level, and in human children is associated with significant neurodevelopmental delays and reduced intelligence.

          • McFlock

            but not at anywhere near NZ levels

            • Colonial Viper


              Fluoride in water is a clearly demonstrated developmental neurotoxin, but only at concentrations 3x to 6x higher than that commonly added to NZ water.

              • McFlock

                So it’s completely irrelevant to the debate in NZ then.

                If we’re scaremongering with irrelevancies, don’t we lose dozens of kids a year to drowning? And yet councils pipe this poison into people’s homes…

                [edit: night night. Back tomorrow]

                • Colonial Viper

                  I’m simply stating a scientific fact. You may decide it’s not relevant to this discussion, but the fact still stands.

                  Fluoride is a scientifically demonstrated developmental neurotoxin at concentration levels 3x to 6x that added to NZ water supplies.

                  • Lanthanide

                    It’s also a scientific fact that people drown in water and it’s piped into people’s homes.

                    Really CV, I thought you were better than this.

                    Next you’re going to be saying “Barrack Hussein Obama” like Morrissey did that one time and then defend it by saying you’re “just using his full name”.

                    • Morrissey

                      Next you’re going to be saying “Barrack Hussein Obama” like Morrissey did that one time and then defend it by saying you’re “just using his full name”.

                      Indeed I did, and that is exactly the case. Using the full name of that war criminal, serial liar and appallingly bad actor has no more significance than saying “Richard Milhous Nixon” or “Franklin Delano Roosevelt”.

                      If you want to go on another quixotic adventure and show I was pursuing some racist agenda, then go right ahead. I have neither written nor implied anything even remotely racist on this or any other forum.

                    • Lanthanide

                      Funny Morrissey, because you already had Obama in your little list and didn’t have his middle name for those entries, or anyone else already on the list. Subsequently when that item was archived to the list, you removed his middle name. All other new entrants on the list have not had their middle name.

                      So either it was a purely “innocent” brainfart on your part to put his middle name in, which you’ve never done before or since for anyone else, or you did it deliberately for some purpose.

                      I’m not implying you were doing it on a racist agenda, just that the evidence suggests you did it for some reason.

                    • Rogue Trooper

                      “that one time in band camp”.

                  • McFlock

                    “Air is dangerously thin at 3 to 6 times the height of mt cook (scientific fact). You might decide it’s not relevant to this meeting of Mountain Safety NZ, but the fact still stands…”

                    Still waiting for any evidence of harm to nz kids.

                    • Morrissey

                      I’m not implying you were doing it on a racist agenda, just that the evidence suggests you did it for some reason.

                      I think you’ve read much too much into it, my friend. My mentioning of Obama’s middle name sprang from no agenda, as far as I am aware, but feel free to continue psychoanalyzing me. Although I am sure you have noticed that Obama shares many of Saddam Hussein’s less savoury traits.

          • Paul Campbell

            Re: LD50 – well you have to choose something, I chose the same measure for the two things – even if it’s 1/20th the value you still need to drink more than twice your body weight in water – balloon up to 3 times your size – to get a dose that will harm you, and that’s going to be more than 20 times the LD50 for plain water itself (which is ~1/10 of your body mass)

    • McFlock 8.5

      And Churchill lived to a ripe old age despite heavy smoking, heavy drinking, and obesity.

      But that doesn’t mean those habits would make you live longer.

      As for Iceland:
      What’re the background fluoride levels in the water supply?
      What’s their child & adult provision of dental care like?
      what’s their per capita consumption of high fructose corn syrup?
      Do they supplement anything else with fluoride, such as salt or flour, or are there higher levels elsewhere?

    • Chooky 8.6

      In Scandanavia they use Xylitol quite a lot …it is a natural sugar substitute and supposed to remineralise teeth and get rid of bad bacteria causing teeth decay decay and other infections eg ear


    • Rogue Trooper 8.7

      much respect for Lanth. (and Queen) established over, coming up, two years (at a stretch). now, gotta go an’ spray some weeds.

    • TheContrarian 8.8

      “Looking country on country Iceland with the same number of caries per head of population as New Zealand has never used fluoride in it’s water supply”

      Yes but because of it’s volcanic history there is a vast natural occurrence of fluoride already present in the ground water so you aren’t comparing like with like.

  7. A nice Sunday doco: The four horsemen. The economic collapse of the US empire and hence the entire Anglo Saxon five-eye system Jon Key is traveling around the world to help keep together for his bankster puppet masters made simple so that even the average Kiwi can understand it so share with your colleagues and family.

    • muzza 9.1

      Yes its been quite the global(ist) tour for little johnny lately!

      Meeting with one of the heads of the cartel, staying on-site and so forth – If I remember rightly it was NZ who took the lead role in the so called, laws of succession changes, surprise surprise!

      Speaking at the UN, selected to speak out against the security council veto and how they have failed the people of Syria!

      Then we get little johnny stepping in for barry, and carrying the responsibility of the latest round of secret negotiations , not the first time he has been front and center to spin the TPP fraud.

      Just what is little johnny being set up for, I think we can clearly see what his duties are here in NZ, but on the international stage, what’s going on…

      Most likely it is tied to the fraud being carried out in the name of the , “realm”

      • travellerev 9.1.1

        He is that nice “colonial clot” selling the TPP and bullying the 54 states of the common wealth into accepting the queen and her offspring to become their heads of state forever. The smiling Assassin’s MO from when he was a banker. He will be rewarded handsomely! A knighthood, a couple of seriously lucrative seats on some Financial Military Industrial complex boards raking it in!

  8. Rosie 10

    Wow. How to lose comrades and alienate friends. Nice going Martyn, really getting everyone on side there with hostility and something verging on pathological hate.


    Just when I thought it was safe to go back too………….

    • Rogue Trooper 10.1

      yes, skipped over that article in te newsfeed. (check requests Murray Olsen).

    • fender 10.2

      “Wow. How to lose comrades and alienate friends…………”

      +1 Rosie

      Many thumbs down there for Martyn to think about.

      • Rosie 10.2.1

        Although the correct order should have been “how to lose friends and alienate comrades”.

        It’s a bit of shame he’s got such a bee in his bonnet because the work of the TDB has been otherwise good, with knowledgeable authors and live streaming of public meetings. Unfortunately he’s not helping himself and furthering the stereotype of the “Aucklander living in a bubble” (I did meet these types in my years of living in Akld, I believe they do exist, as well as the cool people) by today only publishing articles on the local body elections from an Auckland centric view, no word on the other regions, not even Liane Dalziel winning CHCH. Compare that with the the nationwide comment on TS on the subject, including Karols article on the Green Sweep.

        Oh well, it’s his blog and he can write what he likes. I just wonder if on top of his misdirected anger about Wellington he’s really sour about the fact that there was such a poor turnout at the Wellington TICS Bill meeting TDB hosted alongside the anti GCSB coalition.. TDB is possibly a bit out of pocket due to the cost of the venue and maybe the cost wasn’t met due to the lack of attendee’s when they had the whip round afterwards.He’d be right to be disappointed with the turnout though, I was surprised.

        • Rogue Trooper

          wise words Rosie

        • David H

          “Oh well, it’s his blog and he can write what he likes”
          But I thought it was opened to unite the best of the ‘left’ leaning authors, against the ‘right’ Blogs. Not to be Martyns personal soapbox.

          Launched on Friday 1 March, 2013, the ‘TheDailyBlog.co.nz’ unites over 42 of the country’s leading left-wing commentators and progressive opinion shapers to provide the other side of the story on today’s news, media and political agendas.

          • Rosie

            Hmm well, with respect the many good authors on TDB, its the soapbox aspect that has been turning me off. Yesterday’s post really topped it.

    • ak 10.3

      Yes, Rose, extremely disappointing in the current climate to see the Left leap into unprovoked infighting. Will we never learn? And right on cue, Bruiser Borrows leads with another prepared Benny-bash Right hook…..funny, innit, how the answer to billions in tax fraud is a tax cut and even the odd knighthood, but fail once to donate the odd lawnmowing cash to Key and you’re marked for life….. sickening. Focus that nausea, brothers and sisters, where it belongs.

    • Murray Olsen 10.4

      My comments do not seem to have appeared on that post. Basically, under a different pseudonym, I suggested Bomber learn that class does still have a place in politics. So far he’s managed to include birth dates and addresses, which covers A and B. Time for C. I also suggested he is so good at own goals that he should get himself selected for the Socceroos and give the All Whites a chance. I am really beginning to wonder if he is any more than an event manager.

      • Rosie 10.4.1

        “My comments do not seem to have appeared on that post”.

        Could be some of that ol’ fashioned TDB moderating going on……….Although, mine got through within 30 mins this time. I was pleasantly surprised. Own goals? Indeed.

        Roguey and ak: acknowledged (especially the bit about tax fraud)

        What I never mentioned to Martyn was that I have a duck named Jaffa. She is named for her colourings which resemble the well known lollie, rather than the unkind term for an Aucklander. It’s not a term I’d use for my friends and family I left behind in that city. Shame he can’t see that his perception is somewhat unjustified, somewhat paranoid, and that his view doesn’t exactly cement solidarity.

        • TheContrarian

          Quite – it is also interesting to note, from my own personal experience, that many of my Wellingtonian friends move (or want to move) to Auckland. I myself am considering such a move. The Wellington economy is tanking and Auckland never looked so bright and promising to us in the capital.

          • billbrowne

            Really? you’ve got a job in Wgtn, your kids go to school there and you want to sell your house in the Wgtn market and buy one in the Akl market.

            I think bright and promising would turn to a daily dreary commute from Sth Akl very fast.

            Probably better off moving to Aus.

    • TheContrarian 10.5

      Yeah it was an awful article. He’s a blowhard of the largest order.

      • Rosie 10.5.1

        Gotta hand it to you TC, you did try to warn us. You were right about the moderation policy too….

        • Rogue Trooper

          I’ll just pop in here.(thanks for the telephone box Rosie). now…back to the movie.

        • TheContrarian

          Very rarely will critical comments be allowed through – particularly from those Bombers has already identified as his ‘enemies’ (and I am not just talking about myself – I know several others who get caught up in his..intriguing moderation policy. People further to left than me).

          I know, I know, it is technically his blog – his rules however The Standard, as much as I malign some of it’s editors, writers and positions, has a very adult approach to moderation in most cases. Bomber does the left a disservice by being so stridently uncompromising and rude to anyone who might question his POV.

          • Rogue Trooper

            it all becomes clear

          • Rosie

            I learnt the hard way by questioning the view that political polls conducted via land lines are biased in that they inadvertently target wealthier households. Prior to that, I thought it would have been clear that I am “on the same side” but really, what does that mean anyway. Observation, not question mark.

            If you do fly the coup to Akld TC, pack plenty of cash for accommodation, whether it be for rental or purchase. Apart from that, there is alot of interest to be found in Akld. Good luck with your decisions.

  9. tricldrown 11

    Ugly Truth Science has been the nemisis of fundamentalist reilion for at least 1 000 years the more people that get a half decent education the less they believe in religion.
    You are the christian equivalent of the Taliban .
    Insecure people like yourself need to push regessive ideas onto others to justify your outdated naive guilt trip.
    That’s your ugly truth for you.
    Aree you an exclusive bretheren .

  10. greywarbler 12

    I thought of getting some information about election in Taranaki. I looked at one info site and found 1 woman in 15 ranked councillors. Looked to see her photo but none supplied.

    Looked up Andrew Judd and it certainly pays to sort NZ pages. There are a number of Andrew Judds around the English speaking world. Found that he is an optician. Against questions placed at the site like what about library policy etc. his answer was look at other candidate answers.

    So the person looking on line can’t bring together informative material easily to so as to build an idea of his character. Perhaps you have to have to go and visit his offices and look into his eyes while he is looking at yours? He got 10,000 approx more votes than Duynhoven so they must know something about him in Naki. He has been on other councils.

  11. ScottGN 14

    I had to watch it twice but I’m pretty sure that, in response to the discussion around superannuation on Q&A today Fran O’Sullivan said that John Key ‘should go’. Basically she made the point that a government’s superannuation policy should amount to more that just the PM’s pride and vanity (pretty galling I know to those of us here at The Standard who’ve been saying exactly that for ages). Call me an optimist but is there a sense that those in the so-called ‘business/economy lobby’ can see a change in the wind and are starting to gravitate towards the Cunliffe/Parker team?

    • McFlock 14.1

      god no, they’d never go that far.
      But PM Collins, maybe…

      • ScottGN 14.1.1

        Collins was pretty terrible on Q&A today (even Fran said she failed to make her case). She only looked remotely credible because Corin Dann is a fucking hopeless interviewer.

      • karol 14.1.2

        Nope. Scott’s correct. At about 1min 56secs, FO’S says “He [Key] should go.” Interesting discussion. I tend to agree more with Annette Sykes though, rather than raising the retirement age beven further beyond when most Maori die.

        Agreed t=with the later point in the discussion about bringing parties back into local politics so people have an idea of what candidates stand for.

        And…. seriously! Susan Wood, political journalist, fucked up filling out her vote for the health board – I do agree the muddled mix of voting styles will confuse many, but surely not someone who is meant to be right up to date on political processes?

        • ScottGN

          I was impressed with Annette Sykes today with one caveat. I think that while she made excellent points about maori life expectancy with regard to the pension, she lost an opportunity to link super with the living wage by pointing out how impossible it is for young NZers (maori, pacifica mostly but everybody really) on minimum wage (or lower in the case of the youth wage) to set aside any money for their retirement.

        • greywarbler

          Susan Wood up to date – that gal needs raisin!

    • Colonial Viper 14.2

      If they are gravitating to Labour because they think Cunliffe and Parker are willing to raise the super age (while National is not), then I’m not sure that “optimism” is the right word.

  12. Tracey 15

    you lot have prolly already seen and discussed this, but i only saw it yesterday in a link in QoT post

    “Tax the hell out of religious organisations.

    According to the government’s charities website, religious groups are:

    Making about $1.5 billion dollars per year.

    The second largest collection of charity groups after research & education.

    The top 2 of the top 10 charities by assets and income combined.

    7 out of the 10 largest charities in the country.”

    does tithing attract a rebate?


  13. Draco T Bastard 16


    When the European Commission asked Britain for proof that sly continentals were sneaking into our hospital beds, Whitehall replied that its demand for hard facts was an affront. “We consider that these questions place too much emphasis on quantitative evidence,” it huffed.

    Proof, if you still needed it, that conservatives ignore facts at will.

  14. Jim Nald 17

    Will today’s Open Mike be up?

    I would like to point out a link on The Guardian.

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

  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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