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Open mike 14/09/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 14th, 2021 - 148 comments
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148 comments on “Open mike 14/09/2021 ”

  1. Tiger Mountain 1

    Bullies everywhere when challenged say “I was only joking”, or “can’t you take a joke?” and now from NZ National we have “it was just the vernacular”.

    Shane Reti has backed up his leader’s nasty comment to Siouxsie Wiles “big fat hypocrite”, saying Ms Wiles has to answer and that the comment was just kiwi vernacular rather than personal targeting.

    Dr Reti’s comment at 6:49 of the interview…

    It is so often women that take a hit from tory bullies, as writer Eleanor Catton discovered when then PM John Key waded into her for daring to critique the NZ neo liberal state.

    • dv 1.1

      Never heard that "BFH" before in Kiwi.

      I think what he means its Collins vernacular

      • Ross 1.1.1


        You've never heard of big fat lie?

        This is what the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary says:

        Definition of big fat

        • used for emphasis

        So the words "big fat" are used for emphasis. A big fat lie is a whopper of a lie. A big fat liar/hypocrite is someone who tells whoppers or is as hypocritical as they come.

        Let’s cut to the chase – Dr Wiles has said that if we leave the house in level 2, we should wear a mask. She left her house in level 4 (4 is stricter than 2) but didn’t wear a mask. People will make of that what they will.


        [Show us the evidence that “She [Dr Wiles] left her house in level 4 (4 is stricter than 2) but didn’t wear a mask”. If you made it up, withdraw, correct and apologise for spreading DP-like misinformation.

        Secondly, since you like Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary so much why don’t you look up the meaning of “dog-whistle” and let us know? – Incognito]

        • dv



          This is what the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary says:
          The word you’ve entered isn’t in the dictionary. Click on a spelling suggestion below or try again using the search bar above.

          • Ross


            "Big fat" is a figure of speech and is used for emphasis.

            He opened his big fat mouth. You've not heard someone say that? The speaker doesn't have a fat mouth LOL


            • roy cartland

              Here's an comparison: Michael Moore's book titled Stupid White Men compared to this one: Michael Moore is a Big Fat Stupid White Man.

              The one sound provocative, while the other sounds petulant and childish.

              I've read both – the latter tries, and fails IMO, to use that same argument: '"big, fat is commonly used and understood etc etc etc'; being a typical example of explaining is losing.

            • dv

              Oh thank you for explaining that with references.

              Now what does a BIG FAT PEDANT mean?

            • Jester

              Judith should accuse someone else of being a big fat hypocrite as an example James Shaw for travelling to Scotland. Would everyone on here then be losing their rag over the wording if she said the same thing about Shaw?

              • Chris

                Wait for Collins to start coming out calling everyone 'big fat' this, 'big fat' that, a bullshit attempt to make people think there was nothing sinister in what she said about Wiles. Anyway, her ridiculous outburst backfired spectacularly because Wiles is so beautiful in every way.

            • Chris

              Sure, but meaning is in the context, not the words. What's the context here? Clue: Judith Collins.

            • Rapunzel

              Juduth Collins has a liking for trying to pass uncouth comments as "vernacular"

              "he need's to meet his maker"

              "people would like to bottle her"

              "stab from the front"

              And they're just the ones she's willing to make in public – god only knows what else she says – I think her colleagues are now painfully aware of her reckless tongue

              • Tricledrown

                Crushed and Oblivious to blow back.Collins throwing bullying shit all over the place despetately flailling around ends up covered in the muck she throws.

                Keep it up paunch and Judy.

              • bwaghorn

                It's not reckless, it's designed to get a giggle out of the angry simply minds that think shes the bees knees. Yes they do exist.

        • Gezza

          You’re right Ross & I’ve been pointing out this language usage nearly always implies THE LIE is huge. Telling whoppers.

          If Collins had had the presence of mind to say in her opinion Wiles is telling whoppers, she might have got away with it.

          But instead, she’s gone off half-cocked with a kid’s language useage that was BOUND to attract immediate criticism for fat shaming.

          Collins’ way of thinking is highly suspect. No way I’d ever want her in the PM’s job.

          • Nic the NZer

            I'm quite far from a National supporter, but I have never seen Collins get away with any kind of coloquialism. They are always immediately taken in the worst light possible by govt supporters.

            • Gezza

              “never seen Collins get away with any kind of coloquialism. They are always immediately taken in the worst light possible by govt supporters.”
              … … …

              Well, to be fair, they likely always will be by any supporters of any government, won’t they? 🤔

              I seem to remember Andrew Little getting constantly roasted over some pretty petty stuff, & Ardern’s strongly Wycaddo-accented pronunciation still attracts regular criticism (as does Bridges’ nasally whine) from supporters of other parties.

              Out of interest, what are any more examples you can recall of Collins getting slammed for using colloquialisms?

              • Nic the NZer

                For example, when she said she wanted to bottle Poto Williams.

                Which resulted in this, even by mickey.

                Judith’s last stand?

                • Gezza

                  Oh Gawd, yes – how could I have forgotten that??

                  Still, it’s another example of a likely language useage cock up by Collins that anybody else would have seen comong & stopped themselves saying.

                  “Bottling” someone is a common useage (& practice), meaning assaulting or attacking someone with a broken bottle.

                  Back my childhood days I DO recall a phrase being used by my parents that went something like “that’s so good/clever/funny/whatever you should bottle it & sell it”.

                  But Collins didn’t say that. She went with the short version. The one with the double (including nasty) meaning.

                  I think she’s a comms freaking disaster for the Nats, hoping to attract & find new voters.

                  • Nic the NZer

                    Or as Mickey suggested, if (as a politician) you acidentally use clumsy language in ways which can be miss construed as threatening, it will be.

                    • Gezza

                      Yes. Which is why you have think very carefully, politics, in about what you ate going to say in reply to reporters. Collins’ tendency is make some instant remark that she thinks is witty, when it is just as likely to be half-witty.

                      Compare her to Ardern, when she is asked difficult or potential-disaster questions – whether people should have sex in hospitals, for example. Ardern thought carefully about it & gave a very neutrally-worded response. But her genuinely-humoured p, perfectly natural reaction to being asked the question was a winner!

                      Collins just can’t pull this sort of thing off.

            • Pete

              You mean sort of like Ardern getting away with anything? She could make an announcement about NZ researchers coming up with a cure for cancer and for the National/Act supporters it would be about the terrible clothing she was wearing, the fact that her hands moved while she spoke and the terribleness of her being excited.

              • Nic the NZer

                Sure, there are plenty of partisans on both sides. But in most debate contexts its considered correct to take the best reading of the counter position. Social Media and Twitter not withstanding.

            • Robert Guyton

              I thought; "I’m sick and tired of listening to her telling everyone else what to do" was Collins' most revealing phrase.

              • Incognito

                She wouldn’t be trying to sow discontent, would she? Ironic words coming from the Leader of the Nats who’s telling her caucus what and what not to do to keep the appearance of unity and common agendas [plural].

              • Jilly Bee

                Spot on Robert yes.

            • Chris

              "They are always immediately taken in the worst light possible by govt supporters."

              That's because almost everything she says is calculated, and comes from her core being which is fundamentally damaged by her suffering from some kind of personality disorder, whatever the precise diagnosis might be. So in the rare instance that might involve her honest use of a coloquial term, then it's understandable people will assume the worst. At very best it's a matter of boy who cried wolf.

              • Chris

                A good example is Chris Hipkins' slip up the other day during the live Covid update. If Hipkins had a reputation as being someone who deliberately used innuendo whenever he opened his mouth then we'd be right to think what happened during the Covid update was just another sleazy remark from a grubby character. And although I personally think it was a bad move putting that coffee cup on public display, we didn't think that of Hipkins because he doesn't have that reputation (or not that I know of). Apply the same logic to Collins and it's a different story, regardless of what her intentions were.

              • Nic the NZer

                Clearly I don't rate Collins abilities as much as you.

        • Incognito

          See my Moderation note @ 8:01 am.

        • Gabby

          That Judee's a sly one alright isn't she Ross. Woulda got away with it if it weren't for those darn woke kids.

        • AB

          "So the words "big fat" are used for emphasis…"

          Indeed they are. And they are fun to use – what about "big fat rationalisation" ?

          Unfortunately your rationalisation doesn't really let Judith off the hook. She knows perfectly well that "big fat" is used for emphasis – but also knows that the charming Dr Wiles is not a sylph-like figure. So Collins gets to smirkingly point at the latter fact, while maintaining the built-in defence of vernacular usage. So in addition to the standard charge that Judith is vulgar and dishonest, we can now also add the charge of deliberate cynicism.

          • Ross

            So in addition to the standard charge that Judith is vulgar and dishonest, we can now also add the charge of deliberate cynicism.

            I would've thought that there are plenty of things Judith can be criticised for without needing to manufacture outrage. And even a stopped clock is right twice a day. 🙂

            • AB

              Yep – but I'm not really outraged at all. For me the whole silly business is just another small bit of incremental evidence of what she's like.

          • Gezza

            … given Collins own rather generously-proportioned physique, with a huge dollop of pot calling the kettle black.

        • Ross


          If you don’t like the Merriam-Webster dictionary, you are welcome to inform its editors. I'm not in the habit of shooting the messenger.

          On 7 September 2021, Dr Wiles told NZers on RNZ:

          "At level 2, if a case gets out and into the community, there's a chance for massive spread with Delta. .. For the good of everybody, wearing a mask when you're out of your home is a good idea."

          That raises the question of why it would be a good idea to wear a mask at level 2 but not at level 4. (The good doctor has admitted going to the beach sans mask. That of course raises the question of whether that was a good idea. What if she had been hit by a car while biking…presumably emergency services would’ve been needed which would have exposed them and her to possible infection.)



          [I trust that you’d choose to misinterpret my Moderation note, based on your form on this site.

          Here’s your last opportunity.

          You said that Dr Wiles left her home without wearing a mask.

          Provide evidence for that, or correct/withdraw and apologise – Incognito]

          • Incognito

            See my Moderation note @ 10:53 am.

          • Ross

            I trusted that you wouldn’t read that Dr Wiles admitted to not wearing a mask in level 4, based on your form. LOL

            Feel free to shoot the messenger. Again.

            [Bye, Ross, take two weeks off for spreading a lie, again. Dr Wiles has tweeted that she did not leave her house without wearing a mask, as you wrongfully asserted, but that she did take off her mask at the beach when it was safe and allowed to do so in her bubble – Incognito]

          • gsays

            Your second link contradicts your assertion: “Let’s cut to the chase – Dr Wiles has said that if we leave the house in level 2, we should wear a mask. She left her house in level 4 (4 is stricter than 2) but didn’t wear a mask”.

            "Wiles said that on the day the video was filmed, she and her friend had cycled to Judges Bay, about 5km from her house, and taken off their masks to talk as the beach was “near-deserted”.

            We need better wingnuts.

          • weka

            What you claimed Wiles said,

            Let’s cut to the chase – Dr Wiles has said that if we leave the house in level 2, we should wear a mask. She left her house in level 4 (4 is stricter than 2) but didn’t wear a mask. People will make of that what they will.

            What Wiles actually said,

            If I'm out for a walk and there's a group of people passing by should I put my mask on?

            "It depends on where the wind is blowing you could have a gust of wind that if someone infected blows it to you or if you were infected blows it to someone else… For the good of everybody, wearing a mask when you're out of your home is a good idea."

            She didn't say that everyone, everywhere, should wear a mask at Level 2.

            Misquoting out of context to mislead is a bannable offence. That's in addition to the lie about Wiles not wearing a mask when she left home.

            Incog has given you a 2 week ban. I think you got off lightly.

    • Gezza 1.2

      Hang on I’ll have a listen. He’s onto a losing argument claiming that “big fat liar” is the just the Kiwi vernacular. It’s a common (very) young child’s retort.

      If he’s admitting Collins was being childish that’s a different story.

      • Gezza 1.2.1

        Oops: Correction. It’s big “fat hypocrite” she called her, isn’t it.
        Still very childish language usage tho. I suppose I can just add incredible immaturity to Collins’ suite of talents.

      • mpledger 1.2.2

        I just did a google search on nz sites for "big fat hypocrite" and I get two pages with 95% of the results being within the last 4 days. If it's vernacular then it's not very widely used.

        • In Vino

          I think it is archaic now, but it did exist. My dear old mother had a retort for what she did not believe: "Oh, so's your fat aunt!"

          Glorious retort, whether you had a fat aunt or not.

          Such is language, but I would not trust Judith not to consciously use it with bad intent…

    • Gezza 1.3

      It’s just a throwaway question, right at the very end.

      Shane laughs it off by comparing it to a word BHAG (big hairy audacious goal) hec says was all the rage in corporate organisational circles a few years back. Epic fail, I’m afraid, Shane. Nothing like the same thing.

      (Didn’t know he’s a “Mormon boy”.) I’m sure “Dr Shane Reti” (as Collins seems to persistently call him in interviews) is embarrassed as hell at this latest sow’s ear Collins has for made herself out of what she thought was a silk purse.

      I’ve opined here a few times in recent days that National has got no one else to replace Collins if she tanks the polls again.

      Janet Wilson, in Stuff a couple of days back, sees it differently:
      … … …

      “The National Party caucus is not short of talent. While Collins was hurling poison across the benches on the day the house resumed last week, Chris Bishop (recently demoted by Collins) opened his speech by celebrating the increased rates of vaccination and praising essential workers. Dr Shane Reti has been a conscience and critic on issues including the failure to fully include GPs in the Covid response. Erica Stanford has led the charge on the important, unsexy work of families split apart by the Covid immigration rules.

      Simon Bridges was judged to have cocked up the National response in the first outbreak, but watch his performance on the epidemic response committee in 2020: there was a leader.

      Louise Upston has been asking timely and important questions about the wage subsidy. Matt Doocey has done a heap of mahi on mental health, and is asking hard, important questions on a sector where the government, in my view, has let us down really badly.

      Gerry Brownlee started a podcast, and it’s pretty good!

      Maybe Collins’ is the hardest job in politics, and maybe that’s because we find out who you are.

      Janet Wilson, an experienced, smart and measured former journalist and communications expert, worked loyally and stoically alongside Collins through the agony of the last election campaign. So appalled has she been by the National leader’s performance she recently described her as “Muldoonist”, as paranoid, leading a party “floundering, saddled with endless entitleditis” and on a path to “irrelevance”.

      Senior members of John Key’s slick ninth floor team talk privately, but with striking candour, and more than a little despair, about the state of the leadership today. And who can blame them? Key and Bill English and others must weep at the sight of a years-long project to cement National as the sensible voice of a modern middle New Zealand collapsing a little further with each spring-loaded outburst from Collins.”

      • Gezza 1.3.1

        🙄 Beg pardon. The author of those lines I quote above is Toby Mahire, writing in the Spinoff, carried by The Herald.

      • Tiger Mountain 1.3.2

        Dr Reti has actually been quite reasonable on the Govt. COVID strategy the last several weeks, but make no mistake he is a provincial tory through and through.

        He is the classic Māori that barely recognises he is one–a 37 dwelling state house build is underway in Whangārei’s middle class Maunu suburb. The development was strongly opposed by pākehā property owners but an Independent Commissioner Okayed Kāinga Ora to proceed.

        Shane Reti, spring loaded, immediately took the property owners side rather than advocating for Whangārei’s working class and homeless in urgent need of housing.

    • Anne 1.4

      It is so often women that take a hit from tory bullies,…

      There are plenty of women who can attest to that. Its ingrained in the right-wing mindset that women are easy targets. So many of us have had multiple experiences of it. Ever since RD Muldoon, National Party cowards have indulged in bullying behavior towards well known women particularly if they think they represent a threat to them.

      Pick a person like Siouxsie Wiles, undermine her and drag her name through the mud.

      • Tiger Mountain 1.5.1

        Yes, politicians use of “fat” is interesting dialectics–would Collins have used it on a slimmer woman than Ms Wiles? Trump and Collins might qualify for the epithet themselves, but some curious separation of the personal and political seems to apply in their cases.

  2. Andre 2

    This extra week (at least) of level 4 sux weeks-unwashed balls. I'm an introvert, I actually enjoy lots of alone time, and it still grates. I really feel for the extroverts right now.

    It really is time to start differentiating on the basis of vaccination status. Two weeks ago, New Zealand passed the 50% mark for first jabs. We're now just short of 60%, and it's looking like the rate of first jabs is starting to fall off.

    Most of my workplace is fully vaccinated, having got their second jabs two weeks or more ago. Of the people I work with closely, I'm the laggard having got my first a week ago. My workplace could safely go back to work right now with negligible risk of spreading covid, just by making me wait another week before allowing me back on site.

    I've been strongly supportive of the strategy the government has used, and I agree extending the level 4 is the right thing to do (barely) for now. But the vaccination campaign has reached the stage where the game has now changed, and it's time for responses to change. And the better responses will now consider individual vaccination status.

    • garibaldi 2.1

      Andre if we don't beat this outbreak in these lower socioeconomic suburbs this week then we will go down the gurgler just like NSW. So suck it up and try to have some empathy for the living conditions of the poorly treated poor. It looks to me that we are probably about to reap what we have sown with neoliberalism.

      • Andre 2.1.1

        Fact: the young immigrants that are most of the people I work with are fully vaccinated now because they went as walk-ins to vaccination clinics in lower socioeconomic suburbs that had lots of resource thrown at them that wasn't being accepted by the residents of those suburbs.

        Fact: vaccination take-up now is a lot lower than it was a couple of weeks ago.

        Fact: if you wanted to get vaccinated today, there's hundreds of available slots all over Auckland. Let alone places that accept walk or drive-ins. Same tomorrow, or any day after that. Lack of availability is no excuse to not be jabbed. For those that first booked weeks ago and couldn't get a booking before later this month or October because supply was constrained, rebook it now. You can get it today if you genuinely want it.

        It really looks like we're pretty much at the tail-end of the actual vaccine enthusiasts, and it's time to start showing the carrots and the sticks. I don't much care whether anyone views "get a jab, get back to earning" as a carrot, or "no jab, no job" as a stick.

        • Nic the NZer

          The National party is green lighting your application to head the vacine marketing campaign. Whats the slogan to be? May I suggest, we have counted to 50 so here comes the virus, ready or not.

          • Andre

            Seymour's already ahead of that game and running with it.

            It really is an issue that could flip people's minds and votes if people start to feel their actual rights are being unreasonably restricted because Labour are pandering to idiots that have swallowed vaccine misinformation and disinformation.

            National and ACT may be fkn useless and even outright bonkers on many issues, but they're at least vaccine-sensible. So it's not like the US where the RepubliQooks have painted themselves into bizarre rabid anti-vax and other kinds of nuttery on all issues.

        • garibaldi

          Your first sentence Andre…" the young immigrants that are most of the people I work with". Therein lies our self induced problem. Our economic policies in the last thirty years have led to this situation. Need I say more?

          • DukeEll

            Yes, you do need to say more

            punching down on the most vulnerable in society who are doing the most societally responsible thing possible right now does need an explanation.

            Fucking twit

    • Jenny how to get there 2.2

      Most of my workplace is fully vaccinated, having got their second jabs two weeks or more ago…..

      My workplace could safely go back to work right now with negligible risk of spreading covid,….

      Just having some people vaccinated, is not how vaccination works. It’s a numbers thing. The more people who get vaccinated the more effective vaccination is.
      For measles we know that number is 95%.
      The percentage figure for Covid-19 is unknown. But Singhapore and Israel indicate that it has to be higher than 80% coverage.

      Most fully vaccinated people who get Covid delta infections are asymptomatic, WHO says

      Rich Mendez – CNBC, July 12, 2021

      “There are reports coming in that vaccinated populations have cases of infection, particularly with the delta variant,”

      “The majority of these are mild or asymptomatic infections.”

      Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, World Health Organization’s chief scientist


      Most of your workmates could be fully vaccinated and still catch Covid-19. possibly not even knowing they have it.
      I am sure you can appreciate, Andre, the implications, of having vaccinated, asymptomatic persons, mixing in a partially vaccinated population.

      • Andre 2.2.1

        All the more reason for those currently unvaccinated to rattle their dags and get jabbed. So when they get it, their infection is much more likely to be mild or asymptomatic.

        By the numbers, we have about 360,000 people that have booked for their first jab and haven't got it yet. At rates of over 50,000 first jabs per day that were achieved a couple weeks ago, those 360,000 could be done in a week.

        There's another million-ish of hesitants that are eligible that haven't yet booked. 20 days worth of jabs. Time for them to get shown the carrots and sticks.

    • Gabby 2.3

      Bear Down for Midterms!

    • McFlock 2.4


  3. RosieLee 3

    Here's a thought. For the self-entitled Jaffas who flew to their Wanaka "holiday home", let's put them in quarantine before they're allowed back into Auckland – somewhere like a Mt Eden prison cell should be good. Then let's hope it can cost them a fortune in legal fees to get out of it and to stop their names being published. Oh, and get Slater to do some covert filming so we can see who they are. Name and shame.

    [there is now a court order for name suppression in place. This means it is illegal to name the couple. It’s also against the TS rules to breach suppression orders, not least because it puts the site’s owners at legal risk. Please don’t encourage name and shaming while the name suppression is in place. Anyone naming the couple on TS can expect a substantial or permanent ban – weka]

    • weka 3.1

      mod note for you RosieLee, please acknowledge.

    • Jester 3.2

      I believe name suppression is allowed far to often in NZ for numerous crimes. You would think it should only be used in rare cases.

    • Ad 3.3

      In order to get to Wanaka I nominate my two weeks in Blanket Bay Lodge first.


      • weka 3.3.1

        Sorry but Mayor Boult has now made it clear that while he loves rich people and will bend over backwards to accommodate them, he doesn't want no stinky Aucklanders messing up the place at this time.

        • Ad

          Look, I have suits that need drycleaning, properties that need annual tax-rebated inspections by flying there, the wine cellar is desperately low, the skis are barely used, the cleaners haven't been able to come around, the nails aren't done, the holiday home needs its cushions re-fluffed, I'm bored, everything in the house looks boring, there's spring Wisteria to trim back, the Airpoints are running low, and that mountain bike seriously needs its wheels rotated or there'll be hell to pay. Things are just getting desperate. Can't we just get a break here?

          • weka

            I can only imagine how much of a stress not being able to do tax-rebated inspections would be on top of everything else.

    • Janet 3.4

      If they were smart and not as self-entitled as they seem to be , they would admit and take the punishment -which I hope is many years of community service, not a fine – and retreat back into a more considerate life. To me the name suppression thing suggests that rather than protecting, it is implicating the parents.

      • McFlock 3.4.1

        What are they, poor?

        First they'll see what the privileged-person's penitential-triple can get them: a spontaneous donation to charity, a carefully drafted "heartfelt" apology (I wrote it myself with a pen, and they are my words because my lawyer paid the PR wonk to script them for me), and then a submission to the judge along the lines of "ohmagerd, if I get a conviction I might not get to travel overseas like I frequently do, and it might harm my career prospects". With an optional extra of "my good standing in the community should count in my favour".

        The shit I saw some daddy's little girls and boys get away with at uni… not so much by the uni itself, but getting diversion multiple times because they were "promising young men" so the effort to prosecute would be futile. Yer honour, the dude was a smarmy little shit who would break random windows and fences for fun every saturday night. Spank him, or someone else eventually will – with a fist.

    • Herodotus 3.5

      should be interesting in watching the 2 cases unfold to see if they are treated in a similar way. Both have flouted the rules in a very open manner. For my bit give them all 2 weeks in prison, and do not consider a financial penalty, as for some a financial penalty is no penalty.

      • weka 3.5.1

        In what way should they be treated similarly? The two women ignored a police checkpoint, kept driving at dangerously high speeds, were eventually stopped by road spikes, nearly caused an accident with traffic coming the other way, and then resisted arrest.

        The Auckland/Wanaka couple should be treated according to their own transgressions, which are serious enough but don't include the additional issues of resisting police directives. Pretty sure it will be clear in law what they have breached and what sentencing can go with that.

        • Herodotus

          I was referring to that both consciously made efforts to break out of the boarder acting against the rules that many of us are following. And should luck have failed us and carried the covid to other areas what then of the consequences to the country and our strategy ? How so few can now, thru selfish reasoning cripple the country. That was what I was meaning by grouping these 2 incidents together. If there is no to minimal consequence how then do you signal the importance of following the directive ?

          • weka

            $4,000 fine or 6 months in prison is what I've seen as the potential sentence for the couple.

            I don't see how the additional offending from the two women can be separated out from the covid breaches.

            • Janet

              Then the 2 woman have two separate charges to be addressed quite separately.

              I don,t like fines unless they are proportional to income and I think goal helps nothing. I do think a long term community service sentence might mean some thing constructive comes out of it all !

              • Herodotus

                Weka- fair enough

                Janet I was thinking of the 2 options available that Weka quoted, and I feel with the limited info that I agree a fine would be nothing to these 2. It will be interesting to see what if any consequences there are. And I would believe that I am not alone within Auckland after 5+ weeks of lockdown and to see some flagrant totally selfish actions has brought out some of this frustration within me out 😤

      • I Feel Love 3.5.2

        Well, we've yet to hear their ethnicity, or for a spokesperson from that ethnicity to apologise to the rest of NZ, etc.

    • gsays 3.6

      It is a laugh out loud irony, the horsey folks reason for name suppression is a lack of trust in strangers.

      You can't make this sort of stuff up.

    • Cricklewood 3.7

      Hopefully its lifted quickly, names are all over social media and sadly a woman with the same name as one of the parties is coping some pretty fucking horrible abuse.

      I really hope that gets taken into account in the name supression arguements entitled prick needs to own his shit not hide behind mummy.

    • mpledger 3.8

      I do find it strange that he was given name suppresion because of his father. The man is 34 – surely at 34 his father is no longer answerable for his son's actions and noone could think it.

    • McFlock 3.9

      lol so their mate is in the ODT saying how sad it is for them after a "stuff up".

      Fair call, death threats are too much and should be investigated. But stuff up? Mistake? Piss off. It's not like they popped out for some essential work and then "what the hell, how did we end up flying to queenstown and renting a car to Wanaka? That's an oopsie".

      STFU. And save the "some of the stuff they have done in the community over the years" bullshit for the judge.

  4. Gezza 4

    I think most of us have probably lost hope & interest & moved on already so I might knock off posting about Afghanistan, but I especially liked the author’s opening line for this NYT OP.


    “The war in Afghanistan wasn’t a failure. It was a massive success — for those who made a fortune off it.

    Consider the case of Hikmatullah Shadman, who was just a teenager when American Special Forces rolled into Kandahar on the heels of Sept. 11. They hired him as an interpreter, paying him up to $1,500 a month — 20 times the salary of a local police officer…. By his late 20s, he owned a trucking company that supplied U.S. military bases, earning him more than $160 million.

    If a small fry like Shadman could get so rich off the war on terror, imagine how much Gul Agha Sherzai, a big-time warlord-turned-governor, has raked in since he helped the C.I.A. run the Taliban out of town. His large extended family supplied everything from gravel to furniture to the military base in Kandahar. His brother controlled the airport. Nobody knows how much he is worth, but it is clearly hundreds of millions….

    Look under the hood of the “good war,” and this is what you see. Afghanistan was supposed to be an honorable war to neutralize terrorists and rescue girls from the Taliban. It was supposed to be a war that we woulda coulda shoulda won, had it not been for the distraction of Iraq, and the hopeless corruption of the Afghan government. But let’s get real. Corruption wasn’t a design flaw in the war. It was a design feature. We didn’t topple the Taliban. We paid warlords bags of cash to do it.

    As the nation-building project got underway, those same warlords were transformed into governors, generals and members of Parliament, and the cash payments kept flowing.”


    • francesca 4.1

      It's interesting that these views are now part of mainstream thinking about Afghanistan ,and published in the "respectable" news media

      People like John Pilger have been writing about the Afghanistan scam for decades, and not been amplified in the same news media.

      Nor is he credited now

    • Ad 4.2

      US withdrawal from Afghanistan gives a very good chance that both the White House and the Senate will return to Republican control.

      US foreign policy over 20 years has fundamentally altered domestic politics; even worse and deeper than LBJ's exit.

      • Gezza 4.2.1

        The White House & Senate may well soon end up under Republican control again, but I doubt it’ll be because of Afghanistan. There was never going to be a tidy way for the US (& the sucked-in NATO countries) to extricate themselves from that ill-thought-out invasion.

        Biden’s said as much, publicly, twice & he’s betting that the hypocrtical criticism & fuss about abandoning the place in such shambolic way to the unstoppable Taliban is going to fade away. Pulling out & ending the “forever war” was what the great majority of US voters wanted.

        • Ad

          You're so optimistic!

          • Gezza

            Here’s another NYT OP from a pessimist:


            “How 9/11 Turned America Into a Half-Crazed, Fading Power

            “The painful condition of neither peace nor victory, against an enemy seen as practically subhuman, itself required vengeance,” Ackerman wrote. “Trump offered himself as its instrument. Declaring his presidential candidacy in his golden tower, he asked, ‘When was the last time the U.S. won at anything?’”

            Now, as the 20th anniversary of Sept. 11 arrives with the Taliban back in power in Afghanistan, America is face to face with its defeat. In truth, the immediate collapse of the American-supported government probably saved many Afghan lives. If a Taliban victory was all but inevitable, as intelligence analysts apparently assumed, it’s probably better that it happened without a long siege of Kabul.

            But the lack of a decent interval between America’s withdrawal and a Taliban takeover, besides being a tragedy for Afghans allied with us, revealed America’s longest war as worse than futile. We didn’t just lose to the Taliban. We left them stronger than we found them.

            The sheer waste of it all is staggering. Twenty years ago, American politicians and intellectuals, traumatized by an unprecedented act of mass murder and not-so-secretly eager to see history revved up again, misunderstood what 9/11 represented. We inflated the stature of our enemies to match our need for retribution. We launched hubristic wars to remake the world and let ourselves be remade instead, spending an estimated $8 trillion in the process. We midwifed worse terrorists than those we set out to fight.

            We thought we knew what had been lost on Sept. 11. We had no idea.”

            • Ad

              Theatres of influence aren't static. They are also real, and active. Fine to keep underlining where the United States is withdrawing from. But as we've seen withdrawing itself is damaging.

              It is very, very unlikely that President Biden is going to turn into the next Charles Lindberg. US global influence is going to stay huge.

              The key question is whether Biden can make a better job of engaging with the Pacific and China more specifically than his predecessors Trump and Obama. He has a reasonable amount on at the moment.

              • Gezza

                Good points. I don’t personally think the US is fading as a superpower. More a case of China catching up to THEM.

                Biden may irritate me if he paints himself as the “leader of the free world” as some of his predecessors have done, but he shows every sign of wanting the US to return to being the primary strategic guarantor of Western liberal democracies’ security.

                As we mostly are not in any position to assume realistically that we can all defend ourselves from a sufficiently large, militarily-aggressive foe – should it ever come to that – it’s nice for us to be able to collectively assume that they probably have our backs.

                Although I think he actually had a point about bludging NATO countries into stumping up their full agreed contributions to the cost of their own defence, Trump might well just abandon any traditional military alliance on a whim, should China or Russia ever setiously threaten another democratic country. And via a tweet.

    • RedLogix 4.3

      Almost all of these pundits have a lot of fun poking at the US establishment as the big slow and easy target – but show the same ignorance around the role of the Afghans themselves in this disaster.

      Most critically almost everyone has neglected the sad brutal truth that there is no Afghanistani nation – it never existed and isn't likely to anytime soon. It is instead a tribal society riven by ethnic divisions. The Taliban are the dominant Pashtun and the people that the Americans stupidly tried to put in power to unify the nation were largely Tajik or Uzbek with no regard to the local dynamics.

      The reason why the Taliban took the country over is that they projected power in the interests of the majority of the people living in that country. When the Americans (and the Russians before them) left – the dominant ethnic group simply took over. The people it's now executing are of course mostly non-Pashtun. Good old fashioned medieval tribalism at work.

      The American argument – for all of it's stupendous naivety – was that if they could remake authoritarian regimes like Germany and Japan into peaceful and democratic nations, why not Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan? The answer is pretty damned obvious in hindsight – that the former were ethnically homogenous while the latter were not. The Vietnamese were never going to tolerate the US handing over power to a corrupt Chinese elite, the Iraqi divisions between Sunni and Shiites has roots going back to the deathbed of the Prophet, and Afghanistan has 43 different ethnic groups who can barely tolerate the sight of each other.

      That the Afghani locals were prepared to exploit American ignorance for their own purposes is not terribly surprising. That the Saudi Wahhibists were also prepared to build fundamentalist schools among the displaced Pashtun in Northern Pakistan, that the Pakistani authorities had their own games to play (very many Pashtun live in northern Pakistan) and that the CCP seem to have been playing their own hand – all gets conveniently airbrushed out of the analysis when it comes time to have another go at the perfidious Yanks.

      • Ad 4.3.1

        Weirdly similar to the breakup of Yugoslavia.

      • Gezza 4.3.2

        A good read there. Last week at some point I found a “history of Afghanistan” youtube video about an hour long that started out as far back as 55O BCE. I had time to kill, I just let it play & listened to it while lying on the couch. The place actually has a very long history of parts or all of it being unified in one form or other & thus included in various different regional states or empires I’ve never heard of.

        Several long before Islam arrived & eventually came to be the dominant religion.

        Your comment makes me wonder why the US cops so muck flak from its critics, like me. The Russians’ behaviour in Afghanistan was pretty shit & their activities in Ukraine & particularly Syria has seen them either involved in their own, or supporting Assad’s, appalling atrocities.

        The CCP have been guilty of various slaughters & terrible repressions in their own country & Tibet, too.

        Some NATO European countries’ behaviour in their former colonies (that they finally departed from not all that long ago, historically speaking, and often left in the hands of equally appalling tribally-dominated regimes) was equally universally atrocious.

        I think the US cops it so much because the Russians & Chinese simply don’t talk about what they’re up to where they’re misbehaving, while the US constantly talks about all the good that it’s doing or done for the countries they’ve invaded or interfered with.

        It’s for their utter hypocrisy & their seemin national blindness to the reality of the misery & thousand of deaths & destruction they cause. It’s the rank double standards they demonstrate for their own people and those of the other countries they attack.

        • Brigid

          " supporting Assad’s, appalling atrocities."

          Such as?

            • Brigid

              So you simply accept a wikipedia entry as the full and honest truth? I'm disappointed.

              Do some investigating on the principal contributors to this article. e.g.Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Syrian Network for Human Rights.

              Who are they? Where are they based? Have any reported from Syria? Who are their sources? Who funds them?

              Read the Amnesty 'report' on so called Syrian Government atrocities and see if you can find a shred of evidence of their claims.

              There was no Syrian Civil war. It was/is a proxy war against the Syrian people by mercenaries paid for by the US, UK, NATO, Saudi and Qatar. US still has troops in Syria.

              You've a lot to catch up, you could start with Timber Sycamore.

              Watch this: "Roland Dumas: The British prepared for war in Syria 2 years before the eruption of the crisis in 2011"

              Find out what Gen. Wesley Clark has said on the destruction of the Middle East. That prior to the Afghan war there were plans to bring the Middle East to it's knees.

              If you want to know what the about the inception of the war, do a youtube search on 'Talk With American-Syrians in Latakia'

              Ask yourself why Syrians have been returning in their droves now that the country is safer? Why do you suppose Assad won the 2021 election with a vote of over 90%?

              And before you listen to any claim that Syrian elections aren't fair and free this Observers Report to UN might be worth watching.

              Perhaps wikipedia isn't always the most reliable source. In this case I'd have to say, and as any Syrian living in Syria will tell you, the article is simply fallacious.

              • Gezza

                “So you simply accept a wikipedia entry as the full and honest truth? I’m disappointed”

                So am I, now you’ve complained about it. I’m aware the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights is apparently just a one man operation based in London & that his reports have been challenged.

                I don’t usually use Wikipedia as an only source for issues like this – I did a quick scan down the list of references before posting the link, & there seemed to be only one or two from the SOHR.

                Not surprised at all to hear US & Western powers had long had plans to destabilise the ME.

                My view on Assad’s & Russian forces has been partly formed by AlJazeera tv reporting, over the years that I’ve been watching tha channel on Freeview. Seeing the vid clips of barrel bombs being dropped by Assad’s choppers into cities, & e.g. the clips of White Helmets digging thru rubble pulling out survivors & bodies.

                I watch Aljaz tv in the knowledge that some of their reporting is factual & neutral, but that they DO often have notable biases. Their reporting is invariably anti-Assad. They don’t report that the opposition now largely confined to the North I think includes some very nasty Islamist groups.

                I’m not surprised that most of the Syrian population still there prefer living under the Assad regime to the rule of fundamentalist radicals.

                I don’t know what to make of that video of those few Western election observers with the Syrian UN Ambassador,

                “you want to know what the about the inception of the war, do a youtube search on ‘Talk With American-Syrians in Latakia'”- Will do.

                “Ask yourself why Syrians have been returning in their droves now that the country is safer?” – Are they? This is news to me.

                “Why do you suppose Assad won the 2021 election with a vote of over 90%?”

                • Who were his competitors? What was the turnout?
                • Andre

                  I suggest doing some research on what that "western observers with the Syrian UN ambassador" thing really was.

                  Propagandists are very skilled at creating facades and illusions of false legitimacy.

                  • Gezza

                    I plan to. The problem with the Middle East generally is that all sides involved in conflicts there are usually propagandising to the max. Sometimes a mixture of facts & deliberate omissions. ("The OTHER SIDE ARE VICIOUS ANIMALS: WE DON'T DO THAT.")

                    Getting to "the truth" often ends up amounting to choosing which side, or whose version – in complex situations with misbehaviours on both sides – you most prefer.

  5. DS 5

    Anyone thinking that vaccines alone can beat this thing need only look at Israel.

    • roy cartland 5.1

      Can you link to the latest?

      And yes, the vaccine doesn't 'beat' anything; it just flattens the curve, allowing the health system to cope. We're going to need more measures for sure.

      • roy cartland 5.1.1

        Here's an interesting one (I'd never heard of the Stringency Index!):

        The COVID-19 Stringency Index created by Our World in Data is a composite measure of the strictness of the COVID-19 containment policies in each country around the world. As of August 28 2021, Israel’s restrictions score was 45.4, far less strict than New Zealand, where outbreaks continue to be limited in scope (96.3), but comparable with the UK (44.0), which is reporting around 30,000 new cases per day.

      • Jester 5.1.2

        Hopefully they are increasing the number of ICU beds etc. if they have modelled that they believe we will need them once everyone has had a chance to be vaccinated, and we have moved down to level 1 (or even level zero if it exists anymore?)

        • Cricklewood

          I doubt it… they rushed builders in under level 4 to create more negative pressue rooms…

      • Tricledrown 5.1.3

        The numbers dying goes down exponentially from high rates of vaccination

    • Andre 5.2

      Correct, vaccines alone won't beat this. But Israel isn't the argument to show that. Israel isn't actually highly vaccinated. Lots of places have much higher vaccination rates than Israel.

      The simple fact is real-world vaccine effectiveness is low enough and transmissibility is high enough that even a 100% vaccinated population will still have covid circulating in the population, in the absence of non-vaccine disease controls such as masks and restricting potential superspreading events.

      The simple fact is also that permanent level 4 or level 3 lockdowns to maintain elimination aren't acceptable.

      So our future lies somewhere in accepting that vaccines will reduce covid to a disease burden kinda like flu (in those that get vaccinated), and that masking in public places is good thing (as has been routine in a lot of Asian cities for a long time) and maybe places like pubs and nightclubs and sports stadiums and concerts etc need to change how they operate.

  6. Gezza 6

    I can’t see a link to their actual petitition, either in here or on Te Pāti Māori website (unless it’s just because I’ve got javascript turned off):


    I don’t think I’d be prepared to sign this, though I’d like to see exactly what the petition says. I’m personally happy with using Māori names for some places that are still roughly the same place & even size of any original Maori-named rohe, region or settlement.

    But some of these places are named after famous ancestors & so are some English language place names, so there’s an argument I agree with that such Rnglish place names have their own cultural validitt.

    Case in point, my own city of Wellington. The city proper has for over achundred years well exceeded the size of any permanent or temporary Maori settlement (s suburbs still have their original Māori names (eg Hataitai, Petone).

    Originally Port Nicholson (from where the area known as Poneke has probably come) the city was re-named Wellington by its Pākehā settlers & I’m very happy for it to continue to be called that.

    On the other hand the HARBOUR was already long ago visited & reported on by a Māori rangatira sailor & thus the name Te Whanganui-a-Tara (the great harbour of Tara) works ok for me. So too does “Wellington harbour” – we Pākehā have a long tradition of naming ports & harbours after the city they service.

    I think Rawiri over-eggs the “culturally insulted” side of things sometimes. You attract more bees with honey than vinegar.

    (Te Pāti Māori has a really slick-looking website. )

    • I Feel Love 6.1

      "Change our official name to Aotearoa

      Tōku reo, tōku ohooho. Tōku reo, tōku māpihi maurea. Tōku reo, tōku whakakai marihi.

      Te Pāti Māori are calling for the House of Representatives to;

      Change the country’s official name to Aotearoa and

      Officially restore the Te Reo Māori names for all towns, cities and place names.

      It’s well past time that Te Reo Māori was restored to its rightful place as the first and official language of this country. We are a Polynesian country – we are Aotearoa.

      Name changes over our whenua and the imposition of a colonial agenda in the education system in the early 1900s meant that Te Reo Māori fluency among our tupuna went from 90% in 1910 to 26% in 1950. In only 40 years, the Crown managed to successfully strip us of our language and we are still feeling the impacts of this today. It’s totally unacceptable that 20% of the Māori population and 3% of people living in Aotearoa can speak te reo Māori.

      Article 3 of Te Tiriti o Waitangi promises tangata whenua the same rights as British citizens, that Te Reo Māori me ōna tikanga katoa be treated and valued exactly the same as the English language.

      This petition calls on Parliament to change New Zealand to Aotearoa and begin a process, alongside whānau, hapū and iwi, local government and the New Zealand Geographic Board to identify and officially restore the original Te Reo Māori names for all towns, cities and places right across the country by 2026.

      Tangata whenua are sick to death of our ancestral names being mangled, bastardised, and ignored. It’s the 21st Century, this must change.

      It is the duty of the Crown to do all that it can to restore the status of our language. That means it needs to be accessible in the most obvious of places; on our televisions, on our radio stations, on road signs, maps and official advertising, and in our education system."


      • Gezza 6.1.1

        Thank you. 👍🏼

        I’m sure I looked at that website page section as soon as I saw the Stuff article. Maybe it’s been loaded since.

  7. Joe90 7

    The MIQ absconder's mum potted and then apologised for her son's behaviour.

    Odds of Bonnie and Clydes’ parents doing the same?

    • gsays 9.1

      On that subject, a lovely exchange between a heavy weight boxer and rugby league legend and a rugby boof head

      Both declaring their love for each other without embarrassment or shame.

      Welcome to the 21st century.

  8. Ad 10

    With the left installed in Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Iceland, the Labor Party win yesterday in Norway completes the left revival for Scandinavia.


    Hopefully we get to see this in Germany as well in the next week.

  9. Gezza 11

    “Apple has released an emergency software patch to fix a security vulnerability that researchers said could allow hackers to directly infect iPhones and other Apple devices without any user action.

    The researchers at the University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab said the flaw allowed spyware from the world’s most infamous hacker-for-hire firm, NSO Group, to directly infect the iPhone of a Saudi activist. The flaw affected all Apple’s operating systems, the researchers said.

    It was the first time a so-called “zero-click” exploit had been caught and analysed, said the researchers, who found the malicious code on September 7 and immediately alerted Apple. They said they had high confidence the Israeli company NSO Group was behind the attack, adding that the targeted activist asked to remain anonymous”.


    “We’re not necessarily attributing this attack to the Saudi government,” said researcher Bill Marczak.bAlthough Citizen Lab previously found evidence of zero-click exploits being used to hack into the phones of al-Jazeera journalists and other targets, “this is the first one where the exploit has been captured so we can find out how it works,” said Marczak.

    Although security experts say that AVERAGE iPhone, iPad and Mac USERS generally NEED NOT WORRY – such attacks tend to be highly targeted – the discovery still alarmed security professionals.”

    • Gezza 11.1

      Newshub website reports:

      New Zealand’s cybersecurity agency CERT NZ has recommended Apple users update their software “as soon as possible” after a cyber surveillance company based in Israel developed a tool to break into iPhones.

    • Gezza 12.1

      Ever the chancer, is 🗣 Winston.

      Wonder how many would fall for it again, & vote NZF next election?

      Very few, if any, I imagine.

    • bwaghorn 12.2

      Prity divisive approach by te Maori party imho.

      Surely daul naming should suffice, but hell you dont get headlines by being sensible and inclusive.

      • Gezza 12.2.1

        This aggressive attack-Pākehā-oriented political style seems to be a deliberate strategy being quite frequently employed by Waititi & Ngarewa-Packer.

        Not sure exactly what they aim to get from it but they’re neither of them fools. I’m presuming there’s a carefully-thought out, particular reason they are pushing the hostile “racist” envelope in this way.

        Maybe it’s to make cultural connections with the haka? Try and sell themselves as more authentically Maori than Labour?

      • Jester 12.2.2

        Winston certainly knows how to get headlines!

        • Gezza

          So do Rawiri & Debbie.

          They’re the new kids on the block.

          Winston’s just blowing his usual bubbles.

          • Gezza

            … in fact Winston’s probably doing exactly what they wanted someone like him to do. Get them more attention.

            Let’s see how many other’s fall for it.

            Ardern got asked what she thought about it at her Covid press standup today. She said no government plans to do what Rawiri wants; people are happy to use dual names, or their preferred on, from her observation.

  10. joe90 13

    Yup, there is one place worse than 'Murica in vaccine refusal and skepticism. They're No2 behind Russia.


  11. Stephen D 14

    WTF did they think the reaction would be.


    Community service as cleaners in Middlemores ED, and a hefty fine.

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