Open mike 13/12/2009

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 13th, 2009 - 17 comments
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Topics of interest, announcements, general discussion. The usual rules apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

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17 comments on “Open mike 13/12/2009”

  1. Bill 1

    Some worthwhile Sunday reading?

    The Climate Chronicle newspaper is being produced every two days during the Copenhagen climate talks. Thoughtful and in depth articles, analysis and comment. Downloadable as pdf

    http://www.tni.org/briefing/newspaper-climate-chronicle

  2. prism 2

    A comment on one of the talks either Copenhagen or the Dohar rounds that countries might just give up set me thinking. In the future if nothing worthwhile has been done by top people with the money and information at hand to bring about change, ordinary people who are younger and not resigned or apathetic will become sufficiently enraged to have mass meetings and there will be slaughter of many by troops trying to control the population. Been done before. That will fuel and widen the anger. But if people feel there is nothing to lose there will be a worldwide focus on blame, revenge and hatred that will result in worse uprisings and attacks than the present Islamic attacks. It won’t just be a settling down to a simpler, more basic society – the element of class and desire for money has to be overcome for that to happen, I think.

    Some of the sci-fi books have attempted to devise a story using this scenario. I like John Wyndhams The Triffids, the book. Don’t know about the film. But in his story there is hope for the future, love, commitment, cunning, mature understanding of human behaviour and a viable place to live and group that still believe in friendship and human co-operation. Anyone remember the play The Admirable Crichton?

    • bill 2.1

      Or then again, you might be asked to board a train and you know if you do that you will wind up dead. And the person next to you knows the same thing. And thousands of us are herded and we are all thinking and knowing the same thing.

      Yet we all keep our heads down. We all keep our mouths shut and do as we are told because if we are good people…. compliant, polite and accommodating, then we might be okay.

      Of course we know we won’t be.

      Nevertheless…

      • prism 2.1.1

        Just got back Bill. Your comment about getting on a train and compliance – well there would have been hope that something could happen. might happen, that survival was possible, with also a wish to protect others especially the children from vicious treatment and the pain of the stark truth , and also an inability to comprehend how good people could be so harshly treated.
        The Kampucheans, the Rwandans, etc must have felt the same. If people lack hope for their world and their future and the humanity of others who could help, then the nothing to lose feeling would result in angry reaction.

        • Bill 2.1.1.1

          Saw a ‘home vid’ a wee while back. Taken in what was then still (sort of) Yugoslavia. Anyway. Three bubbies (teenagers) led handcuffed from truck by three other (essentially) bubbies with guns. Three bubbies have piss stains on their pants (obviously been hand cuffed for a while).

          They are led into the woods. No objection. You’d cringe or even weep at their level of observable apparent compliance. They even appeared to converse affably with their (soon to be) executioners.

          These videos were the last images these kid’s mothers saw of them.

        • Bill 2.1.1.2

          “If people lack hope for their world and their future and the humanity of others who could help, then the nothing to lose feeling would result in angry reaction.”

          No.

          It results in a certain fatalism ’cause everything is already lost. Humanity didn’t and doesn’t care otherwise the present situation wouldn’t have come to be. There is no anger. There is an ‘already dead’ mentality that takes precedence.

          • prism 2.1.1.2.1

            I can see how that could be Bill. Confusion and the loss of normalcy in everything coupled with hunger, lack of direction or leadership and an unrealised scapegoat might lead to hopeless torpor. It seems that humans are prone to want a scapegoat to blame and if one was found and action planned for them, then it could unleash all the potent rage lying untapped. KKK like.

            Cults produce in their devotees quiet docility and the leaders can channel it. People could react suicidally once committed to retaliating, and feeling part of another reactionist group. The personality type measures that place people as followers, leaders, rule bound, and creatives indicate the need for leaders as followers tend to be 80% or similar amongst surveyed.

  3. side show bob 3

    Yes prism, this has nothing to do climate change but everything to do ideology, particularly socialist ideology. “People have nothing to lose”, what rubbish they have everything to lose, try freedom for a start.

    • prism 3.1

      Thinking of SSBob on the Simpsons. Think the bone through your hair very cute. So is the comment that freedom is everything. It is all a matter of perspective. My birth father died in WW2 fighting for the right for us to think about what sort of freedom we want. After the end of WW2 the free and victorious USA started an anti-commie hunt that took away people’s right to freely consider the attributes of differing ideologies. Freedom is like religion, a great idea until some guys get hold of it and find a way to market it for their own advantage.

  4. Quoth the Raven 4

    A article from a progressive and former Obama supporter: Dear Barack, Spare Me Your E-Mails

    Barack Obama’s faux populism is beginning to grate, and when yet another one of those “we the people’ e-mails from the president landed on my screen as I was fishing around for a column subject, I came unglued. It is one thing to rob us blind by rewarding the power elite that created our problems but quite another to sugarcoat it in the rhetoric of a David taking on those Goliaths.

    In each of the three most important areas of policy with which he has dealt, Obama speaks in the voice of the little people’s champion, but his actions cater fully to the demands of the most powerful economic interests.

    With his escalation of the war in Afghanistan, he has given the military-industrial complex an excuse for the United States to carry on in spending more on defense than the rest of the world combined, without a credible military adversary in sight. His response to the banking meltdown was to continue George W. Bush’s massive giveaway of taxpayer dollars to Wall Street, and his health care reform has all the earmarks of a boondoggle for the medical industry profiteers.

    I feel if these people had engaged their minds a little more before the election instead of the usual leader worship and fealty to authority of the mainstream left they wouldn’t have wasted their time supporting that fool.

    • Zorr 4.1

      And instead supported John McCain and Sarah Palin?

      Not much to choose from there QtR and Obama is by far the lesser of two evils. The issue lies in the giant pedestal that they built to place the 50ft towering golden statue of him on.

      • Quoth the Raven 4.1.1

        The wrong lizard argument.

        ‘Because if they didn’t vote for a lizard’, said Ford, ‘the wrong lizard might get in.

        Zorr there are means other than political to bring about positive change in society. The very fact that you see it as an issue of the lesser of two evils shows how bankrupt the system is and that is the way that many Americans see it themselves. Is that any kind of democracy where your vote is only to play one evil off of another? I don’t think so, but you insist on framing it in democratic terms i.e., if Obama didn’t get in than McCain would’ve. The American people need to work outside the system to change it for the better.

  5. nder the US Constitutional system what option had they? Vote for Obama, vote for McCain, not vote. What would you have done?

    What might at last be seeping into the American psyche is that their much-vaunted Constitution, the theoretical product of very different world, no longer suffices. It’s an uncomfortable merging of a quadannular Kingship trying to co-exist with the Roman Republic. It might have been a vast improvement over the systems that existed two centuries ago but many of those, such as the Westminster system, have moved on considerably and while far from perfect have proved far more responsive to the needs and demands of the modern world that the US and can adapt far faster.

    • Lanthanide 5.1

      Note that there’s nothing in the constitution that says there can only be 2 political parties. In fact up until about the 1930’s or so there were multiple parties in American politics that had significant showings in the presidential elections. Since then it has suited the “PTB” to have only 2 main parties that the plebs must choose between and many systems have been put in place to support the overall 2-party system.

      So to answer your original question: “Under the US Constitutional system what option had they? Vote for Obama, vote for McCain, not vote.” they could have voted for any of the numerous independents that stood for the presidency. Of course none of these have made realistic showings since Ralph Nador cost Al Gore the presidency in 2000, but they were still an option, just like RAM and the other maginal parties in NZ are an option.

  6. gingercrush 6

    So we have a new TV 3 poll that is favourable for Labour but not favourable for National. National is down 5 points, Labour is up 3.6%, Greens 1%. Preferred PM. Key down six points and below 50% and Goff up 3% to 8%. TV 3 is attributing that to the Nationhood speech with polling out tomorrow likely to show support for that speech.Best poll for Labour for the whole year and a bad poll for National.

    Only I think TV 3 have it wrong and the “Nationhood” speech played little role in the support for Labour and the Greens going up and National’s polling falling. 2-3% falls in support for or against a party is well normal with polling. Its almost expected. Thus in my view Labour polling higher with the Greens is just that. A symptom of what occurs naturally in polling. But additionally better media coverage of Goff and Labour. They’ve been performing better as the opposition and have gotten some good hits against National and lifted their profile.

    National’s polling and John Key’s have fallen more substantially than 2-3%. Hence my feeling that artificial high polling and some questionable policies and bad governing as of late is directly responsible for National’s poor polling. They’ve taken hits, ministers have been all over the news. Key and National continue to be vague on a vision for their government. They just haven’t delivered that well as of late.

    Overall, therefore a good poll for Labour and bad for National. But this poll is more about how horrible National has been lately than any speech Goff gave two weeks ago. No doubt the media everywhere will like TV 3 point to the “Nationhood” speech as what made the polls turn. Its easy to do. But I think they’re wrong.

    • Armchair Critic 6.1

      It’s just a poll, ginge, I wouldn’t read too much into it
      There was a post a month or three back asking people who voted National in 2008 why they voted National. I recall there was quite a response to it.
      Earlier on this week the results of a Roy Morgan poll were the subject of a post. The poll results show the gap widened after the election. Which indicates that there are people who didn’t vote National at the election who would now vote National. And since I didn’t vote National at the election and wouldn’t now, I would be fascinated to know why anyone else would.

      • Craig Glen Eden 6.1.1

        I don’t think the polls mean much at all at this time.
        I deal with a large number of National voting people. Some are quite shocked at how badly they (National ) are doing and that they are blatantly lying about stuff like ACC. The thing is its to early for them to admit they should have stuck with Labour and Helen.Its not easy to admit they got it wrong.

        The other group of National supporters are the type of people that make no link between who they voted for and policy. The fail to see that the nice smiley Mr Key actually is killing their businesses. Its that whole but he is smiling he seems nice to me how could he possibly be bad disconnect.

        Its going to take a whole group of people about 3 years to realise they are living a 90s rerun.
        Its like watching a movie and taking 30 minutes to realise oh shit I have seen this before and it was crap you keep looking at the cover of the DVD packett going” oh shit surely not, how did I get this out again?”
        Finally you realise you picked it because of the same reason you picked it the last time, it looked good in its cover and the spiel sounded interesting.

        By this time the family is shitty at you and you are saying ” I wont get that out again” and they are reminding you that you said that the last time you got the same shitty DVD out.

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    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

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