Open mike 14/12/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 14th, 2021 - 377 comments
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377 comments on “Open mike 14/12/2021 ”

  1. Ad 1

    Don't turn on AL Jazeera or BBCnews unless you want Omicron to scare the bejeezus out of you. UK and South Africa are heading into chaos.

    • Puckish Rogue 1.1


      Be fearful!

      Trust in Big Brother the government.

      • bwaghorn 1.1.1

        You off to march with the antis, or are you all keyboard??

      • Anne 1.1.2

        No PR. Trust in the medical experts who guide the responses to diseases. They know infinitely more than we do about such things.

        If I have toothache I go to a dentist. If I have a leaky tap I go to a plumber. If my car won't start I go to a mechanic. If I want to go sailing/tramping I look to a weather forecast to see if its safe. If someone or some people are threatening violence or worse I go to the police. And so it goes on…

        Why oh why then do some people refuse to trust governments who rely on medical experts? Sure, there's a tiny handful who are nutty, that goes for every profession but they soon become known and more often than not are removed.

        • Puckish Rogue

          Because as soon as you give any group of people complete and utter trust that group will believe they can act anyway they want

          • Tricledrown

            Science is not a political movement

            Science is the unearthing of Truth.

            Propagandist Rednecks want to undermine Science because it exposes the Truth.

            6,500 doctor's are for vaccination, 30 against whom most of those are religious fanatics.

            • Puckish Rogue

              'Science is not a political movement'

              What about the scientists, can you name any dodgy or unethical (hell even ethical) experiments?

              'Science is the unearthing of Truth.'

              Again its not science, its the people who cannot be questioned

              'Propagandist Rednecks want to undermine Science because it exposes the Truth.'

              For me personally corporations, political parties and the MSM are using aspects of science (while ignoring others) to push a message

              '6,500 doctor's are for vaccination, 30 against whom most of those are religious fanatics.

              Remember when the leaders of the democratic party said they wouldn't take it because of Trump, yeah the same leaders then pushed it when Biden won.

              • Tricledrown

                Typical but who claimed it didn't exist then caught covid passed it on to others then got double vaxxed ,after saying he got vaccinated Trump said that his followers should get vaxxed at one of his $100 rallies ,Trump got booed off his own stage by his supporters.

                Then have a look at states with the highest rates of Covid all but one of the 16 worst states were Trump states. Trump/ Carlson/infowars all have attacked Fauci the scientist.

                • Puckish Rogue

                  Well hes beyond criticism because to criticize Fauci is to criticize science.

                  • Tricledrown

                    They are attacking Fauci because Fauci is putting forward the best scientific evidence.

                    He has recommended mask use which reduces contracting covid 19 by 53% 99% plus for n95 masks worn properly.Stop big gatherings to prevent super spreading getting vaccinated.

                    He has received death threats from Trump supporters and Carlsen has dog whistled threats.

                    For Fauci advocating well researched proven preventative measures.

                    There are plenty of forums to challenge science with out low life's making death threats encouraged by Republican supporters and leaders.Who are simply trying to divide and conquer at any cost.Most of Trumps fanatical supporters are poorly educated fundamental Christians who are anti science.

            • DukeEll

              Yes, when Māori mythology is equal to science, we can be sure of an unwavering belief in the truth

    • Treetop 1.2

      When the first news item on Aljazeera is about Covid I know I need to watch it. I also then look up the latest on any new strain and what the politics are about managing the mutation.

      I wonder what is going on behind the scene, probably the full truth is classified or telling the public on a need to know basis.

    • Bearded Git 1.3

      I listened to the Stephen Nolan chat show overnight (UK Radio 5). He talked to the South African female doctor who first brought Omicron to the attention of the world.

      She said that she had now treated 90-100 Omicron patients and the infection had been consistently mild. A small study I know but hopeful.

      • Sacha 1.3.1

        Did she say how many of them had already had Covid or were vaccinated?

        • Nic the NZer

          There are not good statistics for that as she is dealing with patients directly. But this would be consistent with the idea that Covid-19 merged with fragments of a cold virus to become Omicron, inheriting both infectious traits and milder symptoms. I think a small majority of her cases were not vaccinated and had not had covid prior.

        • Bearded Git

          She didn't say Sacha.

        • Molly

          If the person you are speaking of is Dr Angelique Coetzee. Dr Campbell reviewed her video a couple of weeks ago. He links to her video, and also writes her statements in the details.

          First to raise alarm about the new omicron

          a storm in a teacup Why everyone up in arms So far, what we have seen is very mild cases 17 to 18 November, noticed a change in clinical picture After 10 week of low numbers For not its extremely mild cases that we are seeing Looking at the mildness of these symptoms, I think it’s been missed in other countries Severely mild, headache What is different is the extreme tiredness Body aches Mostly men under 40s I really think the vaccine plays a role here, breakthrough infections, but very very mild You can call all of the hospitals in Pretoria you will see there is not a huge influx of patients with this omicron

          Along with another report from SA, from Soweto which has low vaccination rates.

          "Rudo Mathivha, head of the intensive care unit at Soweto’s Baragwanath hospital

          We’re seeing a marked change in the demographic profile of patients with Covid-19 Young people, in their 20s to just over their late 30s, are coming in with moderate to severe disease, some needing intensive care. About 65% are not vaccinated and most of the rest are only half-vaccinated I’m worried that as the numbers go up, the public health care facilities will become overwhelmed "

          • Sacha

            Thanks. This is what I was wondering about:

            I really think the vaccine plays a role here, breakthrough infections, but very very mild

            You would expect milder symptoms from people who had already been vaccinated.

            • Molly


              He tends to speak that way, as no definitive conclusions can/should be drawn from the data he's referring to.

      • Treetop 1.3.2

        The age bands could show not being a mild illness for some. In time the course of Omicron will be known and reveal itself.

    • weka 1.4

      ok, I looked.

      Early analysis suggested two doses of a Covid vaccine were not enough to stop people catching Omicron, but the UK Health Security Agency found a third dose gave around 70% to 75% protection against symptomatic infection.

      For people like myself who see this as a long emergency, this is unsurprising. We are still incredibly lucky in NZ to be so far behind the rest of the world in terms of community transmission. We still have the chance to prevent or slow Omicron arriving here. Will we take it?

      Imo, we should be learning medium/long term adaptation skills alongside the rest of the pandemic response. This isn't going to go away, and there's the chance that there will be worse variants.

      Otoh, someone posted the other day a video from a doctor who believed that we got lucky and Omicron is less dangerous than Delta and could help with eventual herd immunity.

      • Bearded Git 1.4.1

        Agree NZ should delay the current border opening dates to stop Omicron arriving here weka.

        But will Jacinda keep her nerve and stand up to the raging business lobby? (Backed by 7-houses and Seymour of course)

        • Tricledrown

          Looking at Seymour now dropping by 60% in popularity.

          Jacinda can be assured she is on the right track.

        • Treetop

          Regardless of what Omicron does. The next month in NZ is the most unpredictable for me, seeing what Delta does.

      • RedLogix 1.4.2

        It's my view that on the presently available data Omicron is the best possible thing that could have happened. It's essentially a giant natural vaccination program that will have the entire world done by about March next year. For free.

        It looks like Omicron will become the dominant global strain by early 2022 and at that point we should be able to drop all the isolations and vaccine passports.

        The next few weeks are going to be critical, but if the morbidity remains very low then there is no argument for trying to keep it out. By all means protect at risk groups with vaccines, and everyone who hasn't been totally asleep for the past two years should know by now that VitD, K2 and Zinc are essential.

    • swordfish 1.5


      Booster after 3 Months (rather than 6)

      Booster prioritised for immunocompromised & elderly of all ethnicities.

      Encourage Vitamin D & Zinc supplementation.

      • Tricledrown 1.5.1

        All immuno compromised and healthcare workers are able to access the booster now others 6 months after the 2nd dose that will be reviewed if omricon takes off.

        • swordfish

          Govt needs to be proactive, rather than reactive, with Boosters for Elderly.

          Immuno compromised access to Booster now ? … depends on definition … doesn't necessarily include all those on chemotherapy for instance.

          • Tricledrown

            That's happening now my wife works in elderly care even the PPE gear is being upgraded.

      • DukeEll 1.5.2

        Can’t humans ONLY process vitamin d through a form of photosynthesis? I.e. ingested supplements are worthless?

        • RedLogix

          Good question. Everything I've read indicates it's both photo-synthesised by the skin and absorbed from food.

          There is a lot of information out there, and as with anything to do with diet not a little controversy. However for what it's worth my brother and I share an arthritis/eczema condition (him much more than me) and his GP uses an injectable mega dose once per month that's the equivalent of 20,000 IU per day to control it. This is dramatically higher than the usual 400 IU still being recommended by some official sources. He's been on this for at least six years now that I'm aware of.

          Most sources suggest an upper limit of 4000 IU per day as safe and useful. I've been using that now for some years with no ill effect. Recently I started adding 200mcg of K2 as well with a positive improvement on some remaining eczema.

          I started using Vitamin D when I was working in the Canadian Arctic in a remote site over winter – and I kept it up since returning. Before I went both my partner and I had three terrible winters in Ballarat with bronchitis – to the point of landing up in A&E one evening unable to breath normally. The prospect of spending the Australian summer in the Arctic winter – effectively meaning I got three winters in a row was not a good one, and on mentioning this my travel doctor he gave me VitD supplements to use.

          The onsite experience was interesting. I got through the first 7 months just fine, while literally everyone else around me came down with one damn bug after another. Then in my last rotation I ran out of supplement and on the last 3 days onsite I came down with a monster dose of flu – the 52 hour trip home was a nightmare. I damn nearly got hospitalised at Hong Kong. I've made a point of not running out ever since and neither of us have had a cold or flu in that period.

          One final point is that it takes the liver about 2 weeks to metabolise the VitD3 you consume as a supplement into the active hormone the body uses – so waiting until you get sick to take it is too late to be of any use.

        • weka

          Can’t humans ONLY process vitamin d through a form of photosynthesis? I.e. ingested supplements are worthless?

          It's definitely something humans can get from food, it's just that there are bugger all foods with it in them. Hence we rely heavily on sun/skin.

  2. bwaghorn 2

    Looks like the government is heading for a bloody nose next year!!

    Or is the carpet corner being lifted for a bit of strategic sweeping. ?

    • Graeme 2.1

      There's going to be some bloody noses, and probably worse. Whether it's on the Central Government or Local Government side is all that's uncertain.

      My take is that LAs that regard their 3 Waters infrastructure as an asset are living in a fantasy world. If you look at those assets from an annual cost / revenue, well maybe, but if you bring in deferred maintenance, then all the upgrades and service extensions that got voted down in Council, but were necessary to meet health and environmental standards, then the things are massive liabilities.

      I find it strange that farming interests are against it, when it's going to force urban councils to clean up their acts by giving them the ability to do something by creating entities that have the scale to move on projects that were just too hard and expensive for most councils.

      • Robert Guyton 2.1.1

        I think it's all a mad-panic whipped up by National Party supporters who watched their party, and their own political influence, wither and all-but-die. They saw opposing 3-Waters as a (desperate) measure to thwart the Government's forward progress. They are, for the most part, unaware of their own deeper motivations, believing instead all of the spurious/mistaken points of objection that have been offered.

        • Gezza

          You may be right in that last sentence. But of course, dyed-in-the-wool, committed National voters will likely always take the line "I'm supporting my party, right or wrong".

          I'm now on the side of the government on this one, in that I think that any move that will see local councils who've deferred maintenance for so long they now can't afford the upgrades needed to their water supply systems, get their upgrades, will be a good thing.

          My biggest concern is that Labour will, however, end up growing another large bureaucracy whose management and functionaries soak up too much of the money thrown at the problem, and deliver too few improvements to the water supply system nationwide.

          I suspect the idea of Māori having a 50/50 say in the management of water, and the nature of the tv propaganda campaign the government ran, will also have helped fuel objections to the system.

        • Gypsy

          Nah. Most people no doubt just saw 3 Waters for what it is, a pointless centralisation for little or no benefit. Oh and add in a power grab by iwi elite.

      • Sacha 2.1.2

        Farming interests are against it because they currently dominate the regional councils who shovel water-related rights their way.

        • woodart

          farming interests are also against it , because farmers are the masters at deferred maintainance .most rural councillors were farmers and most rural towns are now facing huge costs with water and sewage systems 100 yrs old, or have just spent up hugely and now dont want the gov involved. go to your local small town and ask ratepayers how much their rates are . mostly far more than city rates, and without gov intervention in the services, this gap will grow . the naysayers are very loud in their moaning, but have no solutions to the oncoming financial burden for rural services. add to this is the growth of small seaside towns which can no longer rely on septic tanks , but now are (quite correctly) forced to put proper sewage systems in.

      • weka 2.1.3

        it's not only an issue of financial asset, lots of people feel that water is a local issues and that local people should have a say in what happens. I don't want local water decisions being made by corporate manages in Christchurch. We could instead be mending how local bodies work, and improving voting/engagement rates.

        People have a gut reaction against centralisation for good reasons.

        • Gypsy

          Well said.

        • Robert Guyton

          People have confidence in centralisation for good reasons.

          Like your traffic rules localised?

          Your food-safety rules?

          • weka

            yes, some things are best managed centrally, and food safety laws is a reasonable example. But one of the consequences of how that plays out is that southern small goat farmers can't afford to sell produce because the MPI inspectors all live in the NI and it's too expensive to bring them down. Centralisation has downsides that are often ignored by the people that like centralisation.

            Imagine if how you manage your forest was being decided by suits in Wellington.

            Traffic is another interesting one. We have national laws, and locals made the decisions about how to do urban planning in regards to traffic.

            • Robert Guyton

              I think a lot about these issues, weka and am aware of the aspects you describe. My question though is; in the case of 3 Waters, why wouldn't centralisation be a good idea (conversely, why would it be a good idea)?

              It's similar to the Covid response – centralisation seems to be the bugbear for many who have chosen not to vaccinate – you've heard the clarion cries of "fascism" and "globalisation" etc. 🙂

              Should a localised response (my body, my choice) be adopted, or is there need for a pan-population approach. I think the Government has done pretty well in finding a path through that tangled mess of views.

              • weka

                in my mind it's more national, local, community, individual. I don't see the anti-vax people as decentralised so much as individualistically libertarian and spread out all over the place.

                I actually haven't looked at the 3 Waters proposal, too much else going on for me politically. I like this though,

                why wouldn't centralisation be a good idea (conversely, why would it be a good idea)?

                Imagine a debate which explored it all. And then had the capacity to work through the issues.

              • Blazer

                Centralisation is only a good idea when the right say it is…like the Auckland Super City.surprise

                • Robert Guyton

                  It's the only way we'll turn the climate change tide, right?

                  Someone has to say to us, gtfu!

    • Ad 2.2

      I congratulate the government for choosing to spend its remaining political capital wisely.

      What the Otago Regional Council calls a 'tailor made' solution is better phrased as "we managed to hound out the only Councillor with environmental credibility and will now kill any life in the Manuherikia Riiver for as long as we want and without impunity"

      Assessment of Manuherikia River tailor-made | Otago Daily Times Online News (

      • weka 2.2.1

        meanwhile, the left and liberals, long complaining about water quality and the environment, won't act politically on who gets elected to regional councils. Bizarre, but I guess what happens when most people live in cities and visit nature.

        • Ad

          What are you on about?

          I just pointed out that Marianne Hobbs, previous Minister for the Environment, was elected onto Otago Regional Council and was then hounded out of the job by the elected farmers.

          And for that effort David Parker and Nanaia Mahuta are about to strip the entire water system off them. And off the entire rural system dominated by elected farmers.

          What don't you just take your foolish and tiresome bleating about some mythic unicorn called "the left and liberals" elsewhere.

          • weka

            "What are you on about?"

            Voting numbers in local body elections are really low. The people that care about the environment won't organise to change that. It's really hard for progressives to get elected, and those that do often have a really hard time (Hobbs being one example). Because of the nature of the councils, and because of lack of support from the left.

            This is why the regional councils are stacked with right wing people who don't care that much about the environment or are actively pillaging it.

            Maybe stop taking criticism of lefties/liberals so personally.

            #notalllefties apparently needs to be said out loud.

            I've known some incredible progressive councillors over the years. We need more, they need more support, how is that going to happen?

        • Tricledrown

          If people actually turned out to vote you would see a totally different council.

          Michael Laws came from no where to have a major influence on the Otago Regional Council.

          With less than a 46% voter turnout the wealthy know only a small voter turnout is required to control the ORC.

          • weka


            Haven't looked to see how many ORC eligible voters live in Dunedin, but given the big left vote there it's probably worth someone looking at that.

        • McFlock

          Isn't that what happened with ECAN though? Cantabrians voted in a board that actually cared about the environment, especially water quality, so the nats got rid of the board?

          • weka

            yes, and NZ just went along with it. If we had people voting en masse and lots of councils with more left/progressive elected reps, it would be harder for Nat to get away with that.

    • Gypsy 2.3

      Thanks for sharing this, it's informative and well written. The government knows it is serious trouble with 3Waters. The advertising campaign was puerile and dishonest, and the Minister has failed to make any kind of case for the reforms.

      • Robert Guyton 2.3.1

        The Minister made a convincing case for the reforms; reactionary councillors, fearful for their jobs, threw up their hands in mock-horror.

        The Minister, quite rightly, saw through them.

        • Gypsy

          The Minister has failed to convince 75% of the population. She has failed to convince 90% of the country’s councils. It would seem she is now struggling to convince some of her own caucus. 3Waters is a dog, and will in the end be unceremoniously dumped in the bin where it belongs.

          • Robert Guyton

            The noisier percentage of the population is wailing piteously about Nanaia Mahuta's excellent proposal, in part because they're racist.

            3-Waters won't be/shouldn't be "dumped" – BAU is not an option.

            I back Mahuta.

            • Gypsy

              Yes of course. 75% of the population are racist and simply can't understand why shifting billions of dollars worth of assets into the control of unelected governance in return for higher prices for everything that moves is good idea.

              • Stuart Munro

                You could make that jibe – if 75% of the population were voting for regional councils – but they are not.

                • Gypsy

                  The voting patterns in local elections are irrelevant. 3Waters stands on it's own as a really bad idea. The amount of dishonesty around the propaganda campaign should be a warning.

                  • Stuart Munro

                    Any small self-selected minority is wont to play merry hell with the validity of conclusions drawn from incomplete sampling.

              • Robert Guyton

                Stuart's right – your claim of 75% is utter nonsense!

                You would have us believe "75% of the population" has given the 3-Waters proposal some serious thought?


                • Dennis Frank

                  Gypsies have been a marginal folk for centuries. We ought to try to have some compassion for their perspective on life. Their fortune-telling expertise could be useful resource too!

                  75% of the population are racist

                  For a gypsy to express this view, one would expect it to reflect an experiential basis. Not necessarily implying that gypsies are a race apart, mind you, but an indicator that they are an ethnicity apart. History is replete with incidences of oppression directed against that ethnicity. We can reasonably expect that pattern of experience to be informative. So, informed as their view undoubtedly is, we can only benefit from them informing us. Ain't philosophy wonderful?

                  • Blazer

                    The Gypsies have alot in common with the..Jews.

                    Unfortunately the Gypsies chose boxing…and the Jews stuck with…finance.

                  • Gypsy

                    My moniker is more than symbolic. My paternal grandmother was a full blooded roma until she married my grandfather. I've met with a number of gypsy groups across Europe in particular, specifically in Russia, Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic. For all their faults, they are certainly a marginalised population.

                • Gypsy

                  Opinion polls. Only 25% agree with 3waters. But of course you'll argue the rest are just 'uninformed' right? The same arrogance that drove the government to legislate for it's unified outcome before consultation was over.

            • Tricledrown

              Just about every council rejects this mandate.

              The likes of the Dunedin City Council has spent nearly $400 million upgrading its water and waste water another $85 million to finish the sewage upgrade.

              Rate payers in Dunedin will have to pay for everyone else's problems.

              If the govt carries on down the one size fits all they will loose the next election.

              • Robert Guyton

                A dozen sizes results in messy, unsafe, non-action and ad-hoc responses, in enough cases to cause the Government to wish to rein it in and get it sorted.

                • Gypsy

                  That's rubbish. Any system can be improved, but NZ'ers still enjoy some of the best solutions for water in the world. 3Waters is an asset grab by government, and a back door way of mandating iwi control.

              • Gypsy

                …and in Auckland we are investing over $1bn in the central interceptor.

                3Waters is a solution looking for a problem.

  3. Jester 3

    I'm a fully vaccinated Aucklander like around 90+% of us are. Are we allowed to have a checkpoint to stop unvaccinated Northlanders (of which there is a far bigger percentage) heading down to Auckland? Or is that only a one way thing?

    • Blazer 3.1

      You are not allowed to ask questions like…that!laugh

    • Peter 3.2

      Border checks out of Auckland to Northland are protect Northlanders who won't protect themselves by being vaccinated.

      But your point is appropriate.

      • Jester 3.2.1

        What about us Aucklanders…..we should be protected from these unvaccinated Northlanders!

        • Enough is Enough

          Fear not young Jester, they won't be coming anywhere near Auckland. The unvaccinated Northlanders live in Northland for a reason.

    • Patricia Bremner 3.3

      What makes you think they want to come where 700* people have the virus??devil

    • AB 3.4

      The level of border restriction is based on (among other things) the rates of vaccination in the region being entered, not the region being left. Given that vaccinated people can be infectious, that actually makes sense.

    • I Feel Love 3.5

      What's stopping you? Cowardice?

  4. Jenny how to get there 4

    "Winter is coming"

    Although Biden got around 7 million more votes than Trump and overwhelmingly won the popular (and Electoral College) votes, Trump’s raw-numbers electoral popularity actually went up at the end of the 4 years of his presidency.

    Democrats tend to forget that Donald Trump received about 10 million more votes in 2020 than he did in 2016. It’s why he’s still a potent political force in America and around the world.

    Those Trump voters — from the people who stormed the Capitol on January 6th to the folks who just quietly showed up at the polls and never mentioned anything political to neighbors, friends or relatives — believed he was the best guy for the presidency.

    And today, about three-quarters of them (76%) also now believe that his presidency was stolen from him in 2020.

      • mac1 4.1.1

        I winder how many politicians would we go to see at $100 a seat for a 'great time"?

        • Gezza

          I loathe Trump – but the spectacle of a Trump rally, even though you know most of the lines he'll come out with, will always be a great show. You’d get your $100 worth, I’m sure.

          A Biden rally on the other hand will be a disappointment. One would spend most one's time hoping he doesn't fluff his lines and start rambling at some point.

          • Macro

            $100 for a bunch of word salad! I prefer mine to be picked fresh from the garden, and much cheaper.

            • Gezza

              It's basically 30-60 mins of Black Comedy, but his supporters don't get the joke.

              • Macro

                Honestly the man is a complete fool. He is way past rational thought. He can hardly form a coherent sentence.

                Case in point.

                "But if we did — think of this, if we didn't do testing — instead of testing over 40 million people, if we did half the testing we'd have half the cases. If we did another — you cut that in half, we'd have yet again half of that."


                • Gezza

                  The real worry is that it's not hard to find examples of Joe Biden going off script and just blithering nonsense too. And I’ve watched him live on Aljazeera doing just that more than once.

                  Those two are the best the US political system could deliver to voters for their choice of President?

                  God help them all.

                  • Macro

                    You make it sound as if they are the same, which is a complete misrepresentation of actuality. Their policies are completely different for a start. Trump's assault on the judicatory for a start (aided and abetted by McConnell) has left the American 3rd branch of Govt and the Supreme Court a bunch of partisan hacks. The down stream consequences of this will have lasting impact for decades.

                    Biden on the other hand appointed the first Native American Cabinet Secretary in US history.

                    The Senate voted 51-40 Monday to confirm the Democratic congresswoman to lead the Interior Department, an agency that will play a crucial role in the Biden administration's ambitious efforts to combat climate change and conserve nature.

                    Her confirmation is as symbolic as it is historic. For much of its history, the Interior Department was used as a tool of oppression against America's Indigenous peoples. In addition to managing the country's public lands, endangered species and natural resources, the department is also responsible for the government-to-government relations between the U.S. and Native American tribes.

                    Just one of a number of significant initiatives unimaginable under the Trump administration.

                    • Gezza

                      The Republican Congressional & US Evangelical Trump


                    • Macro

                      So this is how the Chump uses people.

                      No matter how you saw the President in front of St. John’s Church—as a Bible-believing patriotic zealot, a religious conqueror, a dominating government force, a law-and-order Javert, a cynical political street actor or a clever reality TV political propagandist—what happened at the Church of the Presidents in Washington on June 1, 2020 was anything but good and holy. It was downright scary. For the most powerful individual in our government to impulsively unleash military-scale force against defenseless citizens exercising their God-given, constitutionally guaranteed rights, seize control of church property, shut down its ministry program and scatter its clergy, then stand atop his war booty and assert his unmatched powers is a nightmare from which I pray we will all soon awaken.

                • Blazer

                  He is a fool…but choosing between-Sanders,Warren and Biden…was easy for Wall St, who saw the writing on the wall.

                  Biden became their fool.

        • alwyn

          Only $100?

          Trump really does come cheap compared to our Government Ministers. That was $1,795 to hear them apparently although you got morning and afternoon tea and drinks at the end.

          I must admit, having a look at the polies who were going to be there I would have to be paid $1,795 to go, rather than have to pay them.

          How many firms coughed up the fee? Anyone know?

          • mac1

            Alright, Alwyn, no Labour ministers' rallies unless you are paid. How much would it cost? 🙂

            BTW, and I know that they do it too is no argument but the Capital club in 1975 did it.too.

            I have no problem as I trust Labour politicians will not sell their souls for $1795 GST inclusive.

            The question is one of trust, and part of that is being seen to avoid a suspicion of compromise and monetary based favouritism.

            I'd hope that business people would meet with politicians where there is an exchange of views, after policies and positions are placed in front of the assembled business folk.

            I don't think that even business people would expect to have an improper influence bought by $1795 GST inclusive.

            Nor should we.

      • Jenny how to get there 4.1.2

        The point is this;

        With the help of voter suppression, and all the other gerrymanders detailed in the link. And a Supreme Court stacked with Trump appointees. If Biden continues to under-deliver to his Democratic voter base, they won't turn out.

        Trump, or his annointed far-right successor, is the next POTUS.

        • Macro

          Actually it's not Biden who is under delivering. The problem can be placed squarely on the shoulders of two DINOsaurs (Democrats In Name Only) in the Senate. So far they have held up almost every progressive initiative proposed by Biden and continue to resist and reduce every piece of legislation designed to alleviate poverty, address climate change, improve workers rights (eg parental leave), and health care.

          Forty-eight out of 50 Democratic senators are on board with President Biden's multitrillion-dollar domestic agenda. That includes health care, child care, climate and education programs. The two not on board – West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin and Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema.

  5. Bearded Git 5

    This article in today's Guardian is interesting re rapid Covid tests-discussed on Open Mike yesterday. It is clear that you need to do the test several times-at least 3 times minimum-to obtain an accurate result.

  6. Dennis Frank 8

    So a "union boss has written to Parliament's Speaker Trevor Mallard asking him to investigate Parliamentary Service's chief executive." This rather ups the ante.

    One Union's director Matt McCarten says chief executive Rafael Gonzalez-Montero promised to support the young staffers but did not. McCarten believes a toxic work environment – as laid out in the 2019 Francis report – persists in the halls of power despite Smith no longer working in Parliament.

    Go the union! When will the public service allow employees to speak truth to power? When hell freezes over? Or when they are forced into it?

    "This is about systemic problems in Parliament. Two young workers lost their careers because they were asked to stand up against bullying, and they were just thrown under the bus. The chief executive, who is paid hundreds of thousands of dollars a year to run Parliament, made them promises – personal promises – which he didn't keep. Any other employer would have lost their bloody job."

    Just another management parasite, you will argue, nothing new. Defenders of the public service citadel will cast around amidst their plethora of feeble excuses to see if they can find one suitable for condoning moral corruption. Weasel words. Oh, here they are:

    "The Parliamentary Service does not comment on employment matters particularly when employment claims have been made that are outstanding. We are committed to continuing to implement the recommendations from the Francis Review and contributing to achieving a healthy workplace culture at Parliament."

    No victims, it didn't happen, whatever it was, move on please, nothing to see here…

  7. Rosemary McDonald 9

    Public Health Ontario releases an important study on reported myocarditis and pericarditis following vaccination with mRNA products. They look at the brand of vaccine and the spacing of the two doses and the rates of reports of heart damage.

    Our Ministry of Health really need to look at this as the reports of myo/pericardidtis after three weekly spaced Pfizer are reaching over 100 per 1000000 doses. A little lot higher than the 6 cases per million we were told was reported in the EEC.

    All the data collected is available through the page linked.

    • Molly 9.1

      You can request aspiration when receiving the vaccine even though it is not standard practice:

      We are aware that occasionally consumers are requesting that the vaccinators aspirate the needle [pull back slightly to check for any minor blood vessels] prior to administration of the COVID vaccine. While this is currently not best practice and may be more uncomfortable for the patient, there is no danger associated with accommodating the consumer's requests. In the unlikely event that you did see any blood in the syringe after doing this, we would recommend revaccinating with a new syringe and needle.

      Advice from

      • Rosemary McDonald 9.1.1

        The report doesn't mention the inadvertent intravascular administration of the vaccines as a possible factor in this heart damage, and although it would be nice to think a simple change in injection practice would end this, I'm not convinced its the entire story.

        The numbers are high. Very high. Have been for a while here in NZ and the source of much concern to some of us who are following research from overseas. We are very possibly looking at a downstream epidemic of heart disease in younger, fitter people that can be directly attributable to the mRNA products.

        Extraordinarily significant that it is a State Public Health Authority that has compiled this data. And released it.

        IIMHO it was a big mistake for our MOH to ditch the greater spacing between doses and demand that everyone is injected at 21 day spacing. We might have gained adulation on the world stage for our awesomely rapid vaccine rollout but we just might have also condemned too many young Kiwis to a lifetime of heart issues.

        However…the usual suspects will deny, dismiss, debunk, fact check, level abuse, cast slurs etc etc.

        And nothing will change.

        • Molly

          "The report doesn't mention the inadvertent intravascular administration of the vaccines as a possible factor in this heart damage, and although it would be nice to think a simple change in injection practice would end this, I'm not convinced its the entire story."

          I agree, Rosemary. Though I wish I had known this option existed before getting the vaccine, and so posted for others that may not be aware they can request it to be done.

          Dr Campbell mentioned there might be some data coming out comparing the adverse reactions between countries that do and don't aspirate, which may provide explanation for some of the numbers. I hope it comes out soon.

          “IIMHO it was a big mistake for our MOH to ditch the greater spacing between doses and demand that everyone is injected at 21 day spacing. We might have gained adulation on the world stage for our awesomely rapid vaccine rollout but we just might have also condemned too many young Kiwis to a lifetime of heart issues.

          I hope that is not true, but we do need to keep in mind that it might be and make sure to collect and analyse data. (Although, like you, I’ve seen enough of our medical and support systems to know that what seems common sense and standard procedure is often not done.)

  8. Dennis Frank 10

    Future National PM jumps onto the first rung of the ladder:

    I can't wait to see what the future brings for MTK Capital! Onwards and upwards!" MTK Capital is one of a series of companies owned by Key, who last went public with his property moves when he bought a $1.4 million home in Mt Albert, purchased with help from his parents.

    A smart move would be for him to form the Property Developer’s Party (PDP) which oughta be able to enroll over 5000 Auckland members real fast. Plenty of young up & comers would join nationwide, he could soon displace Act to leverage National govts before joining the old establishment…

    • Alan 10.1

      Three Auckland families can now live in a home rather than the one family that lived on that property previously, good news I would have thought.

      • Janet 10.1.1

        Yes but the concrete to open ground ratio on the section has greatly changed and is the beginning of a water run- off problem of the future generally for Auckland. – Better to have built up not out.

      • millsy 10.1.2

        All 3 of these families are probably paying more in rent/mortgage payments than the family in the one house did.

  9. Sabine 11

    Oh well, Omicron is here to stay i guess.

    Health Secretary Sajid Javid has told MPs that daily Covid infections are now estimated to be around 200,000, with omicron expected to become the dominant variant in London within 48 hours.

    Addressing MPs, he said: “There are now 4,713 confirmed cases of Omicron in the UK. And the UK Health Security Agency estimates that the current rate of, the current number of daily infections are around 200,000.

    wear your mask

    keep physical distance

    santize, santize, santize.

    • roy cartland 11.1

      Don't worry, it won't be for too much longer:

      The speed and scale of the coronavirus outbreak in Indonesia has created a perfect breeding ground for a potential new super-strain that could be even more contagious and deadly than the Delta variant, infectious disease experts from around the world are warning.

      • Sabine 11.1.1

        yeah, sure Tui.

        I think we should stop assuming that we know a single thing about this virus, and the next mutation that is already doing its thing elsewhere.

    • Bearded Git 11.2

      From today's Guardian:

      "According to the latest data, just one month after your second Pfizer or AstraZeneca jab, the ability of antibodies to neutralise Omicron is 30 times lower than if you were infected with the Delta variant "

  10. weka 12

    This one is worth digging into. Tweet below, a man argues that if a male rapist pretends to be trans at a trial, they will be found out and this used against them. But even if the male rapist is trans, there is still considerable foul and harm.

    • women victims are required in the UK to use self-ID pronouns of their rapist i.e. if the male rapist self-IDs as a woman, then the women who was raped has to refer to the rapist as she/her. (and people still wonder why women are so angry about self-ID). This is further traumatising, and a mind fuck and a form of institutional gaslighting.
    • EDIT: I can’t find the case I was thinking of, so will retract this as having already happened. It has happend with an assault case, see my comment below about Maria Maclachlan.

    • statistics change to something fuzzy. This is what JKR was pointing to. If a male rapist self-IDs as a woman, the crime is recorded and often reported as being by a woman. In the UK apparently it's left up to regional police forces to decide, and it appears difficult sometimes to even know in parts of the system what the biological sex of the offender is. This is complicated further because apparently female accomplices also get charged with rape. This is a very rare charge, but it's clouding the debate.
    • rape trials are known to be extremely hard on women who've been raped, most rapists don't end up in court. The idea that somehow this information that someone is pretending will make things more just is plainly ridiculous.

    (Seth is pretty confused about the whole thing, doesn't understand UK law or the issues for women, patronises JKR as ignorant while being ignorant himself, and yet still thinks his reckons of women's politics deserve his near million follower audience)

    Amazing how many people still don't understand what self-ID via gender identity ideology is doing. GII now means that there is no way to determine if someone is trans or not. None. Self-ID ideology means that everyone has to believe and accept when someone says they are trans. This is the whole point – it's completely up to the individual. Hence women who have been raped are expected to refer to their rapist as women if the rapist so desires.

    Whatever benefits self-ID legislation brings some trans people, self-ID as a social and political construct is much bigger than that.

    • weka 12.1

      and none of that helps trans people or society in general.

      • Sabine 12.1.1

        Transpeople will be collateral damage as will biological women.

        This is nothing to do with transrights, this is about the systematic erosion of sex based rights and the start as always is with women as on the left, the right, and the middle there are enough men who don't mind seeing women being taken down a notch. Secondly, sterilising/castrating children plus surgically experimenting on them is good for science (Mengele comes to mind, while what he did was abhorrent and nothing but torture for those involved , his findings were used by others), and in a world were AI will soon need bodies…….the future is nice and rosy.

        But in the meantime women will go back to the 1850s, put on the urinary leash, competed out of their sports by males and potential physical harm/death (personally i think it is just a matter of time), jobs, and so on and so forth. And we are already seeing this happening.

        Fwiw, the day is going to come where Mme KereKere and Mme Russell and Mme Wall will be forced to consume Lady dick publicly in order to show their continued allegience to the new religion. That too will just be a matter of time. Every authoritarian business eats their own, as that is all they have.

        The kind left is a myth. It don't exist.

    • Sabine 12.2

      plain Seth:

      Shut up shut up shut up.

      Transwomen are women

      Woman now are rapists with penises

      Shut up shut up shut up.

    • Gezza 12.3

      This shit has got so bizarre it's almost unbelievable. 20 years ago if someone scripted this scenario for a tv show, they'd be told to "Get real!".

      PC having now morphed into full Wokeism has led us to this point where no one is prepared to speak up with common sense if a minority can then shrilly claim they are being persecuted.

      Just nuts. As you guys are constantly saying, the end result of these travesties of Woke do-gooder legislation will be the need to reverse them or modify them when the numbers of male rapists who self-identify as women becomes a tsunami of sexual assaults on actual female women that can no longer be ignored by Woke media.

      • Sabine 12.3.1

        They will ignore it, as all these rapists will be women, sitting in womens prisons, raping women there. See, problem solved for men, as there will be no more male rapists. 🙂

        • Gezza

          You let your misandry cloud your thinking & writing too much, imo.

          • weka

            do you know what #notallmen means?

            • Gezza

              No … explain it to me please, and then explain how that relates to what I posted to Sabine?

              • weka

                When a feminist says "men are responsible for rape" or any number of similar things, you can take it as a given that she is not saying all men are rapists, or all men are evildoer supporters of rape culture. You don't have to take it as a personal affront to men generally.

                There's nothing misandrist in Sabine's comment. She is pointing to a social dynamic, whereby genderists are changing the culture so that rape is understood to be done by people, not men. This is an intentional change, with an ideological rationale. It's not misandrist to be talking about this or pointing it out.

                • Gezza

                  You may make what excuses you like for your “sister”.

                  But I could have predicted, after reading many of the anti-men comments Sabine makes for some weeks now, that in reply to my (supportive) comment on this awful Gender Self ID crap that is going on here and in other places, she would respond with a disparaging remark about "men".

                  Sure enuf. She comes out immediately with: They will ignore it, as all these rapists will be women, sitting in womens prisons, raping women there. See, problem solved for men, as there will be no more male rapists.

                  And below, she simply seeks to distract from that misandrous lumping together of all men as if they are all the same type of creature, by once again bringing the topic back to women getting raped by trans women who are in reality still men.

                  In my opinion Sabine is a veritable poster girl for misandry. You, on the other hand, weka, are NOT.

                  • weka

                    how do you think women should talk about rape if they don't talk about men?

                    • Visubversa

                      And the 436 charges of rape in Briton (where rape is a crime that can only be carried out by an unlawful use of a penis) recorded as being carried out by people identified as woman – where a complainant could be required to refer to her assailant with female pronouns in court – like "and then she raped me with her penis" – is just "misandry?

                    • weka

                      I don't think so Visubversa. I think Gezza can see what is wrong with that. But is objecting to women talking about men as a class.

                    • Blazer

                      You may find this article of interest…

                      How Often Do Women Rape Men? – The Atlantic

                    • weka

                      There's a lot of stats in there without a lot of explanation. This did stand out,

                      The authors defined sexual coercion broadly, including verbal pressure such as nagging and begging, which, the authors acknowledge, increases prevalence dramatically.”

                      This matches the research that some say shows women are just as physically violent as men but when you dig into it, the definitions are very broad.

                      This isn't to say that violence against men is unimportant. It's to say please don't talk about that in ways that minimise the huge problem of male violence against women and girls. There are good ways to talk about violence against men without doing that.

                      “Men are afraid that women will laugh at them. Women are afraid that men will kill them.” – Margaret Atwood.

                    • Blazer

                      I am not trying to minimise anything….the link was merely to bring a little balance to the discussion.

                    • weka

                      yeah, that's the minimisation. You present something that is largely irrelevant to what's being discussed, along the lines of 'women do it too'. What's your point exactly? That it's not ok to talk about MVAWG as a stand alone problem?

                    • Gezza

                      @ weka

                      how do you think women should talk about rape if they don’t talk about men?

                      How do you think men can discuss the issue with women if like Sabine they think all men are somehow fine with rape? Sabine needs to get out of that mode. The VAST majority of men loathe rapists for the harm they do and the fear they engender in all the women they love, respect and care about.

                      Men don't engage more on this topic because of the misandrist slurs and accusations of women like Sabine. If you can't see how different YOU are from her when engaging on this topic, perhaps you should examine WHY you can't see that?

                    • weka

                      You're not understanding what she is saying though Gezza. She didn't say all men don't care. She said that it serves men as a class to not be held accountable for the behaviour of men in regards to rape.

                      Yes, a lot, probably even most men, care about what happens to the women in their lives. What we don't have is most men acting politically to end rape, women still so most of the heavy lifting. We are also doing the heavy lifting on gender critical pol too.

                      Have you thought about why I am the only feminist author regularly on TS? Or why for there have been long periods of time with none writing about feminism? Why the feminist authors that have been here have left? How much work it takes me as a feminist to curate any kind of space here that women feel comfortable in talking about these issues?

                      Sabine has a particular commenting style that many don't get, and she has said that with English as her second language there are sometimes miscommunications. I understand her well enough most of the time, because I understand the politics she is referencing. I get that that is not always immediately obvious.

                      But here you are objecting to something she just isn't doing. You asked for clarity, I explained, but you still want to frame her as anti-man instead of doing the mahi to understand where she is coming from.

                    • weka

                      and honestly, if you don't like how Sabine expresses herself, stop reading her comments. Then you won't feel inclined to tell her or me what to do and you can instead get on with engaging on these issues.

                    • Gezza

                      and honestly, if you don't like how Sabine expresses herself, stop reading her comments. Then you won't feel inclined to tell her or me what to do and you can instead get on with engaging on these issues.

                      Righto. Seems to be the only practical solution.

                    • Blazer

                      'how do you think women should talk about rape if they don't talk about men?'

                      'yeah, that's the minimisation. You present something that is largely irrelevant to what's being discussed, along the lines of 'women do it too'. What's your point exactly? That it's not ok to talk about MVAWG as a stand alone problem?'

                      Don't know what MVAWG means.

                      What I do know is I am allowed an opinion as are you.

                      I do not accept your subjective conclusions…at all.

                      I could say some commentators exaggerate and demonise all men with their selective ,delusional comments.

                      You seem to have a prediliction to relying on semantics.

                    • weka []

                      Don’t know what MVAWG means.

                      Male violence against women and girls.

                      What I do know is I am allowed an opinion as are you.

                      I do not accept your subjective conclusions…at all.

                      I could say some commentators exaggerate and demonise all men with their selective ,delusional comments.

                      You could say that, and then because this is a political blog for robust debate someone would most likely ask you to clarify what you meant. I certainly haven’t seen anyone doing what you say today, so it sounds like you are making shit up

                      You seem to have a prediliction to relying on semantics.

                      Don’t know what that is in reference to, but I do like clarity of language because it improves communication.

                      Anyhoo, you dropped an article into a feminist discussion, about some research that shows that men think they’re being sexually harassed when a woman nags him for sex, and apparently this was meant to balance the discussion. You didn’t say how the discussion was unbalanced, to let me take a guess.

                      You object to women talking about MVAWG and naming men in that process, both the ones who do the violence, and the ones who culturally support the violence and the ones who just let it happen. Somehow, talking about women nagging men for sex is balancing that out. And then you wonder why I said it’s a minimisation.

                      If you want to talk seriously about violence against men, my suggestion is start a new thread. Explain your thinking, and invite people to talk about the issue. In all my years on TS, this is rare. What happens quite a lot instead is men coming into conversations about MVAWG and trying to somehow say ‘see women do it too’, as if that’s going to create a good debate about what to do about violence against men. It doesn’t, all it does is derail the discussion about MVAWG. Which is sometimes the goal. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt here, that that wasn’t your intention, but you need to bring something more to the table than flat denial. I also suggest that when you drop links you explain why.

              • Sabine

                I simply stated what is currently happening in the UK, Canada and US, OZ and soon to come here.

                Namely that any man who commits a crime – be that a sex offense of a simple offense such as a burglary can identify out of his sex into the womens sex, and will thus be housed with female inmates.

                That is not misandry, that is fact.

                These men in prison have raped women in prison. In California they hand out condoms and the morning after pill. They are also a bit worried about pregnancies in prison, resulting from being impregnated by a female penis. That too is a fact.

                So i simply stated the fact that our overlords, on the left, on the right and from the middle, simply do not give a flying fuck to the damage that is being done to women, to the crime statistics that are being falsified, and male bodied human beings are being incarcerated in the same cells as women, shower with women, and all that jazz.

                But never mind, complain about my 'misandry' as clearly as a women i should have no issue with men being women, i should just be kind, and nice, and shut up. 🙂

                And if all the rapist identify as women all the rapes will be counted as female on female rapes – never mind the Lady Penis – and thus all man can say that it is women who rape. Problem fixed for ALL men.

                disclaimer: NOT all men rape, but MOST rapists are men.

                • Blazer

                  The law is equal though…correct?i.e…a woman burglar can identify as a man.

                  • Sabine

                    yeah, that is why transmen identify into womens prisons cause they are men or non binary.

                    dude, can you at least try to be funny?

                    • Blazer

                      As you have no SOH…humour is best avoided engaging with you.

                    • Molly

                      @Blazer. You may understand the removal of a sense of humour, when you read the judicial justification for a transgender policy that results in 97 sexual assaults in the women's prison estate in the UK:

                      BBC News – Trans women in female jails policy lawful, High Court rules

                      In a judgement handed down via email, Lord Justice Holroyde accepted the statistical evidence showed the proportion of trans prisoners convicted of sexual offences was "substantially higher" than for non-transgender men and women prisoners

                      But he said the lawyers' claims about the risk of sexual assault were a "misuse of the statistics, which… are so low in number, and so lacking in detail, that they are an unsafe basis for general conclusions".

                      Between 2016 and 2019, 97 sexual assaults were recorded in women's prisons, the judgement said. Of these, it appears that seven were committed by transgender prisoners without a GRC. It is not known whether any were committed by transgender women with a GRC.

                      The judge said he "fully understood" the concerns of FDJ, and that women prisoners "may suffer fear and acute anxiety" if housed with a transgender woman who has male genitalia.

                      But he added that the rights of transgender women prisoners must also be considered.

                      "The unconditional introduction of a transgender woman into the general population of a women's prison carries a statistically greater risk of sexual assault upon non-transgender prisoners than would be the case if a non-transgender woman were introduced.

                      When considering third spaces for transgender people so as to avoid any possible negative effects – we have the reasoning from The Scotsman article, Prison service review of trans policies to launch next month:

                      The news of the long-awaited review came as the SPS also moved to distance itself from a claim by Dr Matt Maycock, a researcher based at Dundee University, that a paper he wrote on transgender prisoners was “influencing the future direction of this policy in Scotland”.

                      Published in the Prison Service Journal, Dr Maycock’s paper interviewed 13 transgender prisoners, the majority transwomen, currently held in Scottish jails about whether they supported a separate unit for transgender prisoners such as HMP Downview in England. The overwhelming response was against separate units, instead prisoners wanted “to be treated in the same manner of people of the same gender as them” including “wanting to be searched more, to share a cell and shower at the same time as other people in custody something that is in contrast to what would be seen as undesirable to their fellow people in custody.”

                      Dr Maycock acknowledges his paper does not “consider the views of women, men and staff about these issues.”

                      The interesting point here is a judicial acknowledgement there is a conflict of rights – something denied by many. The comparative used, is a familiar one for women in this conversation, and one that needs to be addressed and dismantled.

                    • Blazer

                      @Molly…sexual assault of any manner is not a topic for humour(generally).

                      Very interesting that the transgenders reject a 3rd space.

                      They are holding the whole system to ransom and ridicule.

                      Surely their is little political support for their stance in light of the statistical evidence.

          • Molly

            I believe Sabine is referring to the current practice of letting self-identified male prisoners (including those in prison for sexual and violent offenders) transfer to women's prisons.

            In other western countries, this has resulted in assaults and rapes of women prisoners by transwomen. (Canada thoughtfully provides condoms to prisoners to avoid unwanted pregnancies.)

            Sabine is speaking of a possible endgame in which as they become aware, men with no gender dysphoria, utilise the process to get access to women while incarcerated.

            And 'See, problem solved for men, as there will be no more male rapists.' is a commentary on the lack of concern about what is currently happening, also being extrapolated out.

            Not many men on this forum post these items, although some – like yourself – do comment.

            This indicates a perceived lack of interest on the impact.

            • Stuart Munro

              This indicates a perceived lack of interest on the impact.

              I'm not sure the perception is well-founded – the bill that made the change attracted unprecedented numbers of submissions, mostly opposed.

              But straight white males have long since learned not to take a high profile on contemporary gender controversies – one is simply abused and ignored.

              • Sabine

                Well, you could have tried.

              • Molly

                "But straight white males have long since learned not to take a high profile on contemporary gender controversies – one is simply abused and ignored."

                A common enough response, and one that deserves a lot of time and thought. Probably much more than a comment on the Standard, but a couple of points to get started.

                Many people are loathe to get involved with topics on which they have little personal knowledge or experience. But they can educate themselves without participating. Referring to the discussion on TS, it is very easy to see the men who comment on this topic who have taken some time to at least investigate for themselves what the details are behind concerns, and those who have taken a positional stance and respond with slogans or dismissive comments. The 'robust debate' is sidelined.

                Many #notall men are used to airing their opinions (informed or otherwise) and not being challenged directly. This topic means that they will often be challenged – by women – and although we live in a fairly equal society, culturally this still has an impact. If I can find it, I'll link to an article which was written by Julie Bindel, where a producer told her her she interrupted the other members on the panel too many times. As Bindel pointed out, it was less than the others, and the others spoke for longer. All the other panelists were men.

                Women seem also more inclined to spend more time trying to establish what the problem is, where men like to assess immediately and propose solutions.

                Also, amongst my friends, we usually spend a lot of time listening, empathising and establishing boundaries before offering solutions. That's not true for my partner and his discussions with his friends. Whether that can be extrapolated out to a large number of men and women is unknown.

                • Molly

                  Found it. Wasn't a panel, only a discussion with another male on the programme. The Critic UK: No friend indeed

                  I recall doing the press preview on Sky News once with a man who very much liked the sound of his own voice. I tried to fight my corner and did okay, but at the end I heard that the producer said he wouldn’t book me on the programme again because I “interrupted too many times and spoke for too long”.

                  I was so confused by these allegations that I later watched our slot and did a frame by frame analysis. Not surprisingly, I found that in fact I had been interrupted 14 times compared to my cutting across him only seven times (trying to get a word in), and that he had spoken 65 per cent of the time, leaving me 35 per cent. I sent this information to the producer, and to his credit he apologised.

                  I think I confused it with another article written about being on a panel with Billy Bragg and others.

                • Molly

                  Sorry, forgot to acknowledge the bit about submissions, many of which were from men raising concerns.

                  However, I believe there was a real need for public discussion on this topic. As we can see, a reliance on the democratic process was not going to reflect the submitters, or even address them. We had politicians (including our PM) saying that passing this legislation was a priority.

                  Participating in the discussion, even only on TS, at least attempts to inform the public about concerns, discuss their validity and go some way to redress the #NoDebate approach that was taken.

              • Anker

                Stuart, I think some men on the Standard do comment on this issue. There are a few who are allies to women on this issue. Some who appear to be unable to hear women's concerns. I am not sure any of the latter have been either abused or ignored. Certainly the commenting is no worse than it gets on other topics.

                So come on, have a go……..what do you think about about a bill that allows any male, no questions asked to declare themselves a women?

                • Stuart Munro

                  Well, I submitted against it.

                  I think it's a pretty egregious folly, and although some changes to how trans folk identify for legal purposes are not automatically out of line, reforms need to be conducted carefully – to first do no harm.

                  This change, if it results in the issues seen elsewhere, will cost its supporters what little public support and electoral credibility they might have ever had, on top of facilitating prisoner rapes and the like.

                  I'm sure Labour supporters will in general not be happy if this government's unprecedented majority is pissed away on this nonsense as Clark's was on the antismacking bill, without effectively addressing the drivers of our rampant and growing inequality, poverty, and homelessness.

                  • AB

                    Well said. Perhaps the appeal of these sorts of 'reforms' is that they're comparatively easily achieved. Whereas "addressing the drivers of our rampant and growing inequality, poverty, and homelessness" means taking on the some very big, powerful beasts indeed.

                  • Anker

                    Thanks Stuart. The thing about it costing the supporters is that will only be if issue lik?e prisoner rapes are reported. Also incidence for girls, teen girls and women in public changing rooms. How will that data be gathered?

                    BTW I appreciate that you submitted against the bill. It was very difficult seeing women submitteres being shot down and told they were transphobic for raising geniune concerns.

                • Stuart Munro

                  I guess I should elaborate on the logic of it all too.

                  The supporters of the bill set the hurt/pain/consequences of being 'misgendered', an amorphous and sometimes subjective suffering, in the scales as justifying their position.

                  On the other side of the scales there is rape – again a difficult to quantify and somewhat subjective experience (just as the experience of pain is subjective). But there are objective elements to and consequences of rape.

                  Perhaps the authors of the bill consider the experiences equivalent, but I expect that the weight of literature will lie strongly with rape being more of a problem, more intense, more hurtful, more dangerous to mental and physical health.

                  A decision has been made, a crude utilitarian one, that chooses to facilitate rape. And the karma for that lies with the authors of the change.

                  • Molly

                    "The supporters of the bill set the hurt/pain/consequences of being 'misgendered', an amorphous and sometimes subjective suffering, in the scales as justifying their position."

                    As a non-conforming female child and woman, I have often been 'misgendered'. Considered it a limitation of the person, and/or a result of my appearance and society's expectations. What I didn't experience was a feeling of erasure, just a explainable misunderstanding. Whether or not I bothered to correct the person, depended on the situation.

                    A similar question was asked by Ben Cohen on the Nolan podcasts, where he reiterated the perceived harm, and asked one of the presenters "What would you do if someone called you a woman?" Without a beat, the perplexed presenter said "I'd say, I'm a man."

                    This option is not available to transgender people who use the term 'woman' or 'man' instead of the more accurate transwoman and transman, because the likelihood is that the response will be "No, you are not." That's because I would say the meaning of the words man and woman are tied to biological sex for many, if not most members of the public.

                    That is where the distress comes from. The external validation has to be complete, and any 'misgendering' interferes with that.

                    The constant (and inaccurate) comparative themes used, are obfuscation and damning every time they are used as justification.

                  • Anker

                    Thanks Stuart.

                    Yes rape is a particularly damaging experience and evidence shows that the rates of PTSD are higher in rape victims than combat service men and women.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      I expect that a higher proportion of rape victims are murdered too, than the proportion of persons that are misgendered, and that misgendering is not intrinsically or inescapably violent.

                      It's hard to make those scales balance.

              • RedLogix

                But straight white males have long since learned not to take a high profile on contemporary gender controversies – one is simply abused and ignored.

                Yes I made that mistake here a while back.

                • Molly

                  Do you feel that way on this topic? I've considered the conversations you have contributed to as exploratory and worthwhile.

                  • RedLogix

                    About four years back I committed to a 'no debate' truce on anything to do with gender in order to keep the peace among the authors in the backend.

                    The exception I've made to this has been to express my support for the SUFW position on transgender.

                    • Molly

                      Right, (and thanks for that).

                      From that perspective, do you think that the majority of discussion on this topic on TS has been to provide space for discourse, or abusive?

                      Your response will be informative.

                    • Robert Guyton

                      At least you didn't make the near-fatal mistake of commenting on The Stroppery!

                    • RedLogix

                      From that perspective, do you think that the majority of discussion on this topic on TS has been to provide space for discourse, or abusive?

                      For the most part, for such a sensitive topic it has been exceptionally well conducted and definitely not abusive. On the other hand the trans position has faced a strong head wind, so it's been pretty much a one way discourse.

                      In particular many of the women who have led the discussion have been well informed and all things considered what Stuart said above still applies as far as I'm concerned.

                    • Molly

                      Thanks, RL.

              • weka

                But straight white males have long since learned not to take a high profile on contemporary gender controversies – one is simply abused and ignored.

                There have always been men on TS that have spoken out strongly in support of feminism. Some of those men are now opposed to GCFs. Other men are still clearly supportive, but they're not here every day. Maybe have a talk to them, or at least follow them to see how they do it. Psycho Milt is good to follow, and is active on twitter.

                There are also people whose sex and gender is not visible, who support the gender critical position.

                I can tell you as a feminist, that getting abuse for talking about gender/sex is very common for feminists. It doesn't stop us, because we have our backs against the wall. So I guess it depends on priorities.

                • Stuart Munro

                  Feminism is of course, a whole set of issues, and, as is the case with contemporary trans folk, some of the logic or chosen rhetorical positions are occasionally a step too far. This obliges me to choose my battles – though I follow the arguments carefully.

            • Sabine

              He knows what i mean, but he needed to establish the fact that i am not kind, not nice, and consider males to some extend a danger to biological females. 🙂
              Which is fair enough, as i am certainly not a ‘gender confirming’ female body.

      • Blazer 12.3.2

        It is bizzare.

        It is also evident that there are so many minorities being oppressed and or offended,that society is becoming so fragmented ,people don't know whether you or they are Arthur or…Martha.

        • Gezza

          The problem really is that most us (99%+?) do know whether we're Arthur or Martha, but there's this teeny, vocal minority that has captured the media and the Wokesters in our societies and drowned out any criticism of their stupidity or deviousness.

          • Sabine

            actually Gezza that is something that you can no longer assume.

            You don't actually have to change your appearance to be considered a women. You just need to declare it.

            And thus if you accidentally misgender someone or get their pronouns wrong, someone could complain about you being a bigot, a transphobe and get YOU in trouble for it.
            Your Gender ID does not need to meet your physical self, or your biological reality.

            This is a women btw, who is in the BBC 100 women of the year. And this women is allowed into all female spaces and no female is allowed to complain, lest they are happy to be cancelled, loose their jobs, or worse even get a visit by the police for committing a hate crime, and can you please explain your self so that we – the police can educate you about your bigotted self. Think of that for a minute, and yes it is happening in the UK, Canada, US and OZ.

            Conchita Wurst - IMDb


          • Anker

            100% Geeza

          • Blazer

            Look up the word 'alters' Gezza…it helps explain things…a bit.

      • weka 12.3.3

        Just nuts. As you guys are constantly saying, the end result of these travesties of Woke do-gooder legislation will be the need to reverse them or modify them when the numbers of male rapists who self-identify as women becomes a tsunami of sexual assaults on actual female women that can no longer be ignored by Woke media.

        Hard to say. The UK feminists are doing some amazing work and making policy and legislation gains. But once you lose legislation and that is accompanied by widespread social change, it's hard to roll back to something good.

        It's not that long ago that lefties were arguing that men wouldn't abuse self-ID, what man would bother to do this in order to eg be shifted to a women's prison. My mind boggled. Either they don't understand what IDing as trans means now (it just mean IDing, it doesn't mean surgical or medical transition), or they don't care. Put that alongside the argument 'women already get raped, so what's a few more via self-ID' and you can understand why some of us are so dark about both the changes and the positions that many left wing people are taking.

        • Blazer

          Can you tell me exactly who/what influential groups drove this self I.D gender movement that was able to get this empowering legislation passed into laws.

          • Sabine

            Green Party, Labour Party, and all the other wussies that did not dare stand up and say that this is fucked up beyond believe. So every single beige suit in parliament.

          • weka

            it's a complex history going back to US academia in the 90s, and a bunch of post modern theorists merging with trans activism blending with neoliberalism and liberal identity politics. There's also a big push from transhumanism. Some of that was progressive and made positive changes eg gay marriage. But it's morphed into a monster.

            If you ask a more specific question we can answer more specifically. Sabine has explained the NZ side (but there are also NZ lobby groups, and individuals in positions of power with trans people in their lives as a big motivator).

            In the UK charities like Stonewall UK and Mermaids have both had large funding and a lot of access to changing policy. Stonewall is the most useful one to look at, see the recent BBC podcast series on Stonewall about SW's influence on the BBC if you really want to get into it.

            One of the most successful aspects has been No Debate. There are people losing their jobs and careers for talking about biological sex as a reality that is at least or more important than gender identity. No Debate was used to shut people up, get them labelled and targets as transphobes and bigots who should be ostracised. It's changed a bit now, JK Rowling kind of blew the whole thing up because she tweeted and then wrote really well about supporting trans people and not throwing women under the bus. It gave a lot of women courage to speak up too.

            • Blazer

              Before the uglier aspects became apparant….did you support the movement?

              • weka

                which movement?

                • Blazer

                  Lobbyists then,that managed to get these laws enacted.

                  • weka

                    not that I remember. I definitely was against Women's Studies being changed into Gender Studies in the 90s, that seemed dangerous and daft at the time before I even understood what gender identity ideology was.

                    I've always been supportive of social justice issues, still am. Initially when I was one of the people who believed that trans women were men who medically, surgically, and socially transitioned I had the same kind of liberal support for transactivism that I do for other social justice issues. But once I understood the difference between support trans people and what gender identity activism is, my politics changed a lot.

                    But even back in the day I knew that some of the issues were being handled in a way that was not ok for women. The Rape Crisis centre in Vancouver that got taken to court in the 90s for not wanting to allow a trans woman consellor to work with women was a big red flag. As was Mitchfest, a women only festival that got a lot of abuse from trans activists and was eventually shut down.

                    Unfortunately there was a period of time when too many of us thought these issues could be resolved by negotiation and they were few and far between. By the time I became aware of the self-ID push some years ago it was too late, so much ground had been lost.

                    • Blazer

                      Thanks for the good,honest answer.

                      I venture there are a number of people who supported these quite radical enactments…that would now be regretting what ,they wished for came

                    • weka

                      there's a dynamic called peak trans (problematic name because it focuses on trans people rather than gender ideology), which describes how socially liberal people come to realise just how fucking nuts the ideology is and then their politics change rapidly as they peak.

                      Most people want trans people to be ok and to have their place in society. It's when those people realise what the gender ideology means for women's sports or changing rooms or sexuality, that they stop and think more deeply about what it all means. That process is very common, and it's probably what will swing the majority of people in the end.

                      There's a real possibility that there will be a backlash against trans people, so we need to be careful to keep the distinctions clear.

                    • roblogic

                      For me it was observing the outbreak of ROGD social contagion and unquestioning groupthink surrounding "affirmation" surgery.. as if that fixes a problem that is primarily psychological


                  • Molly

                    An excellent article on the wider context, that examines the building blocks that go towards creating an environment where these things take place can be found on Savage Minds substack account:

                    What's Driving Authoritarianism Today? – Julian Vigo

                    I was curious why a left-leaning publication like The Guardian has so enthusiastically and persistently covered this debate from almost entirely one side. So, I wrote the newspaper’s press office to inquire about the “Supported by Open Society Foundations” statement indicated on The Guardian’s website under its “Genderqueer generation” series. I was sent a very quick response informing me that the “Open Society Foundations made a grant to The Guardian for reporting on gender equality, not specifically for that series.” I then asked The Guardian to confirm what I had found on the its website regarding OSF funding. The Guardian verified that they had received a $250,000 one-year grant from the OSF last Fall. The OSF similarly has delved into the transgender movement funding this as if it were its own political lobby to the tune of over $3 million annually in recent years to include furnishing a legal brief on transgender children and youth and funding gender studies programmes in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. Is it any wonder that feminists don’t have a chance of having their perspectives heard by media on the left when there are these sorts of funds to drown out their voices?

                    • Blazer

                      ' Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan'

                      Love to know what…Borat has to say about…that!

              • Molly

                Are you acting in good faith here? It seems you are trying to get a point across other than what is being discussed.

                More succinctly, it appears you are aiming for an acknowledgment that holding a feminist view is the basis for this gender ideology. If that is what you want to say, just say it.

                • Blazer

                  I am trying to ascertain who the people that advocated for this really are.

                  Visubversa is uneqivocal…

                  The answer is men. Men drove this. Mostly straight, white, middle aged, well off – or very rich men with autogynephilia. Now – out of their wives closets, they can practice their paraphillia 24/7 and force others to contribute to their gratification.

                  My gut feeling is that minorities victimised for years…including feminists,lesbians,gays,etc would have a sympathetic approach to what I call a quite repugnant situation.

                  • Molly

                    I think if you are looking for a single explanation, you will be disappointed even if you are provided one.

                    As you would expect, there are a lot of different people with their own agendas all squeezing under the trans umbrella.

                    Identifying men, particularly AGP men, might be partly true, but it is only part of the push.

                    • Blazer

                      On that basis,its an excercise in futility,isn't it.

                    • weka

                      not really. It's complex though, one of the more complex political issues I've been involved in, and explaining it from a cold start is quite difficult.

                      Visubversa is shorthanding that there is a category of gender identity that is AGP males, some have a lot of money and influence, and they've been able to make a lot of gains because of that.

                      There are also men who are anti-feminist who have jumped on the handwagon.

                      And left wing men who have suddenly decided they get to tell women how to do feminism.

                      As Molly says, that's not the entirety, but if you are looking for a way to talk about this without talking about what men are doing, you won't be able to. Men are in the thick of it in a number of ways.

          • Visubversa

            The answer is men. Men drove this. Mostly straight, white, middle aged, well off – or very rich men with autogynephilia. Now – out of their wives closets, they can practice their paraphillia 24/7 and force others to contribute to their gratification.


    • Molly 12.4

      Helen Joyce considered the use of pronouns a courtesy, along the lines of calling a Catholic priest Father. That is rescinded when the object of that courtesy acts in a violent or abusive manner. ie. they no longer warrant the politeness.

      In the case of abusive priests, call them by their name. In the case of rapists, call them by their sex – by which they conducted the offence.

      The re-victimisation of the women required to refer to their attackers as 'she' in court is compelled speech.

      Trans-identified male, Tara Wolf, convicted of assault after Hyde Park attack – feministcurrent

      "He looked mortified in the dock — his head down, sulking with his arms folded — though he perked up a bit when the judge — an older white upper-middle class man — corrected MacLachlan’s use of male pronouns, saying, “The defendant wished to be referred to as a woman, so perhaps you could refer to her as ‘she’ for the purpose of the proceedings.”

      Transwomen are transwomen, as a factual statement is a solution.

      (Though I believe the language obfuscation is deliberate, and intentionally used to avoid necessary public discussion and valid critique.)

      And for those ready to discuss.

      How are transwomen women?

      • Rosemary McDonald 12.4.1

        How are transwomen women?

        Cogito, ergo sum.

        (Apologies to Descartes)

        • JO

          Sanguino, ergo femina?

        • weka

          don't apologise to Descartes, he started the whole bloody thing.

          (was a bit part of it anyway).

          • JO

            Yes of course Weka, ante et post sanguino, ergo femina.

            This 78-year-old female-born woman read that silly phrase this morning (if woman doesn't mean what we thought it meant, why would 'female-born' be any clearer in this poisonous linguistic wormhole?), and after observing the viperish debate with increasing disbelief and sadness, and admiration for people like you who never give up trying to understand, clarify and explain what's going on, I just wanted to point out that (almost?) all 'male-born females' never can, never have and never will go through menstruation. Do I need to qualify that by adding in our lifetimes? I see life in fairly simple terms now.

            As for Descartes, imagine how things might be if we remembered someone – maybe a woman – who said Amo, ergo sum instead.

    • Waz 12.5

      Is there legislation with the effect of legally requiring a rape victim to use the accused's preferred pronouns, or are you talking about the case further into this thread where the judge suggested (which I find appalling) they do so?

      One thing I will note about transwomen in a women's prison is that it seems very likely that their fellow inmates would take a lively interest in their behaviour, and actively discourage them from being violent and abusive in any way shape or form.

  11. Dennis Frank 13

    Stuff editorial: "It’s the age of the culture review." So when is TS gonna do it??

    Of course, an acknowledgement that something is wrong, and a detailed problem identification in the form of a review, are important first steps. But it’s what comes next that matters.

    Well, that would be because actions speak louder than words. Don't tell Labour though – such thinking is way too sophisticated for them.

    Changing an organisational culture takes more than a review. It’s a battle against decades of institutional structures.

    When you're a century old, you need more than a battle to defeat you. Only a war will suffice.

    Nowhere is this need for a cultural overhaul more pressing than in Parliament… During the past two years, the Parliamentary Service has committed to changing working arrangements, introducing a code of conduct, setting up an HR advisory group, and creating anonymous reporting systems. But it’s hard to see how things have changed.

    Because they haven't? Tokenism is traditionally deployed by the left to create an illusion of progress. Deceit strategies likewise. Actions need not be consistent with words – so long as you can fool most of the people most of the time.

  12. Sabine 14

    lol lol lol

    lol lol lol

    in the meantime also in Australia

    A Melbourne woman was walking home when another woman grabbed her and told her to “lie down and have sex with me” in a shocking attack.

    Lisa Jones pleaded guilty to assault with intent to commit a sexual offence and sexual assault.

    She was jailed for three years and three months in the County Court of Victoria on Tuesday.

    Jones, a transgender woman, spotted her victim and followed the other female down Lennox Street in Richmond in February this year.

    The 44-year-old grabbed her victim’s arm in a “strong grip”, forcing the woman to face her and then grabbed her jeans.

    “Why won’t you lie down and have sex with me,” Jones told her victim.

    The other woman, who was on a call to her mum, started screaming and yelled out her location before Jones grabbed the phone and the call was disconnected.

    but i am sure that our good kind and lefty righty and middly polititans gave it a good thought, realised that they would not use public bathrooms, changing rooms, or go home by foot at night after work or such, and thus could not see any danger to them, and thus it is all good.

    The same shit is going to happen here, and i for once am looking forward to the chorus of 'who would'ave thunk' surely not us”, by the dear politians that are supposedly to make life better for all. But then, when men want to be women, who could refuse them? right?

    • Molly 14.1

      Read about this the other day, and it frustrates me that media guidelines refer to these men as women throughout.

      ‘By their actions, you shall know them.’ – we see these men.

      The reinforcing of gender stereotypes is annoying by but itself is manageable, the common parody of femaleness is a giant step backwards, the inclusion of multiple sexual fetishes under the same umbrella as self-exploratory gender identities and the small number of gender dysphoric people is a major red flag.

      I ask again, for those who have the answer – How did you decide transwomen are women?

    • Anker 14.2

      And this one. Everyday there is a new outrage.

      Question is where is the tipping point? When will trigger the backlash? And i believe there will be one and its not going to pretty for trans people.

      • Molly 14.2.1

        The real perpetrators are the politicians, those in the institutions and those within the gender equality industry who pushed this narrative, and those professionals who unquestioningly adopted and repeated it.

        The transgender individuals who are purely exploring and expressing their individual identity need to be protected from any backlash if it occurs.

        • Anker

          Molly 100% agree. This is what Kathleen Stock says that very thing that the backlash will effect trans people. She talks of needing to protect them.

          Perpetrators are the aggressive activists and their colluding group thinkers who have suspended their critical thinking. And the bandwagoners.

          But the people I feel most sorry for are the kids who have been medically transitioned and now have had irreversible damage to their bodies, including infertility and inability to organism.

        • Sabine

          and the unknown Poeple in the back ground that pay the lobbies to lobby and pay the Politians for their vote.

          We will have an avalanche of people with broken bodies, sterilised, castrated that will need lifelong medication in the near future. There is money to be made, the medical/pharmaceutical complex is as happy as is Donald Ducks uncle when he has a gold coin bath.

  13. observer 15

    Luxon delivers poll boost … for the Greens and PM!

    It's a Curia poll, the kind the Right like.

    • Sabine 15.1

      And the election is still two years away, and just for the record, i said the same things when the Key acolytes pointed out his good numbers.

      So again, the only poll that matters is the one in 2023.

        • Sabine

          I will not vote for this current lot that makes the Green Party.

          Sorry Weka, but you need to understand that i consider you to be the only Green Person that i would contemplate voting for, but sadly you are not running and i am not in your electorate.

          But i can not in good conscience support this current Green Party. I will vote for a party that will do no harm, and at the moment that is neither Labour, National, Act or the Greens.

          But i do think that if the Green Party has any brains that they should hire you for communications.

    • Dennis Frank 15.2

      Quite close to what I predicted:

      The poll out today has National on 32.6 per cent – while Act has dropped by 5.3 points to 10.6 per cent. David Seymour has dropped almost five points as preferred PM to 5.6 per cent.

      No noticeable pull back from Labour is a surprise, and that's the bit I didn't predict.

      • Sabine 15.2.1

        most interesting is this

        The poll of 1000 voters was taken from December 1 to December 8 – starting the day after Luxon became leader.

        tiny sample, to short a period to actually have an opinion on anything.

        but what i find interesting is that he got 'good' numbers as preferred PM, whilst Jacinda sits at 39% which is actually a loss compared to this here .

        • Dennis Frank

          too short a period to actually have an opinion on anything

          Yes & no. It surveys prompt reactions. You're right insofar as more folks will be reserving their judgment of Luxon (like me) – which suggests the next poll may show a further rise for him. The preferred PM shift suggests enough folk prefer his more benign style to JC to be a significant factor in future.

          • Sabine

            I understand the gut reaction that gave Naitonal a bit of a booster, but i don't think it is indicative of anything.

            The hologram calling Maori manning checkpoints 'thugs' tho, i can see that as an issue in his polling numbers. Not sure it was in the time frame.

        • swordfish

          1000 is standard … not tiny.

      • observer 15.2.2

        Seymour's slump suggests that his rise was heavily dependent on Collins.

        Not the case for Labour and the Greens. Labour's support will fall/rise based on gov't performance, which is in their own hands. Very different from ACT who are defined by National's performance.

      • Nic the NZer 15.2.3

        There exists a whole cohort of regular National voters who don't think a leader should be a woman. They are not all males either.

        The kind of traits which mesh well with National party leadership don't present that leader as a positive female personality. Judith Collins would have been more popular as a male even if she was every bit the same in personality.

        • Gezza

          I can't even imagine a male version of Judith Collins, tbh.

          Judes was a disaster for National. Turned out to be an un-self-aware overgrown nasty schoolgirl, with no EQ, and basically too dense to see that she wasn't actually smart enuf for the job.

        • Sabine

          But that is the problem that people don't vote for the best person, but a diversity person, or a vagina person, or a penis person. And in the end everyone suffers to some extend, as people voted for a symbol rather then a person.

    • Pete 15.3

      Cars always go a bit better when you replace a flat tyre. Putting a new tyre on though doesn't turn a Ford Anglia into a Ferrari.

      • Sabine 15.3.1

        True that, but it makes a Ford Anglia drive better and that is all you want to achieve with a tire change. Better driving and safer driving.

        Also it makes that Ford Anglia a beauty with hopefully white band tires as befitting a Ford Anglia.

    • Fireblade 15.4

      Labour 39.5 (+0.2%)

      National 32.6 (+6.4%)

      Greens 10.9 (+2.3%)

      ACT 10.6 (-5.3%)

      Maori Party 3.0 (+0.7%)

      NZ First 2.3 (+0.6%)

      Other 1.1 (-5.0%)

      Preferred PM

      Jacinda Ardern 39.1 (+5.1%)

      Christopher Luxon 20.4 (+16.3)

      David Seymour 5.6 (-4.9%)

      Winston Peters 2.4 (+0.9%)

      John Key 1.8 (-1.3%)

      • observer 15.4.1

        Those preferred PM numbers are strange arithmetic. Presumably Luxon and Ardern have both gained from "don't knows".

      • Anne 15.4.2

        Its curious that Curia's polls (lets be honest, it's David Farrar's poll not the Tax Payers Union. It just goes under their name cos they think we're all fools) always seem to have National at higher levels and Labour at lower levels than the the commensurate levels of other polls. Funny that. :roll eyes:

    • Blade 15.5

      What poll boost for the Greens? ACT losing votes was expected. What to me wasn't expected was the PM's popularity rising. That's disappointing given her ineptitude. Let's see what the polls say after the Xmas break and check points.

      • Tricledrown 15.5.1

        People are pleased that Ardern is keeping more people safe as even though Omricon may be less dangerous the fact it spreads so quickly it will mean more deaths.

        National keep crying wolf ACT have passed their peak the right block haven't moved but merely canabilized their own.

        • Blade

          Sad, but true. However, never say never.

          • In Vino

            Blade – it may be that your idea of ineptitude is at fault. Or your failure to link that idea logically to real situations. You may be just another right-wing wishful thinker.

    • Bearded Git 15.6

      Greens ahead of ACT.

      And I can't see the MP going with Nats/ACT after the "thugs" remark from Seymour.

    • swordfish 15.7


      David Farrar

      Also very noteworthy is Luxon’s ratings. He enters the Preferred PM ratings at 20% (Ardern 39%). That 20% rating is the highest outside an election period for any opposition leader (excluding Ardern’s six weeks) since John Key.

      Different Pollster … usual cautions apply … but:

      I'll just note here that, when Bill English took the Nat / Oppo Leadership off Shipley in October 2001 … his first Colmar Brunton Preferred PM rating shot up 16 points to 21%

      Similarly, Judith Collins soared 18 points to 20% in her first Colmar Brunton as Leader.

      Which isn't to deny Luxon's enjoyed a greater boost than Labour's Four Interim Leaders – Huey, Dewey, Louie & Goffie … not to mention Bridges & Mueller. But obviously we can’t assume too much at this stage.

      • observer 15.7.1

        You're right to point out the historical context.

        Also part of the context (and inevitably more subjective): Has any Nat/Lab leader in the MMP era (25 years) ever had an easier start – a lower bar – than replacing Collins? I'd say no.

        Leaders with low polling (e.g Little), yes. But not loathed. The way Collins self-destructed has no precedent. Being "Not the previous one" has never been more advantageous for a new leader.

  14. Sabine 17

    some might remember the floods that killed a few hundred people around central europe – Belgium, Germany for the most part a few month ago. Netherland while it had also some flooded areas and suffered damage to housing etc, did not have a single person die.

    this article lays out what the Netherlands do that neither Germany or Belgium does.

    But what underpins these varied forms of flood defence is an institution: the so-called "water boards" that have protected this waterlogged land for nearly a millennium. ………..snip

    At 167 Oude Delft, it's easy to see what he means. If you stop at this address and look up you see the coats of arms, the delicate panelled windows, the stately Gothic facade finished in 1505. This is the town’s gemeenlandshuis, translated as the headquarters of the local water board, where Daverveldt serves as the chairman – or dijkgraaf as his title is known. ………..snip

    "Farmers, in particular, had to band together to protect their land," explains Tracy Metz, co-author of Sweet & Salt: Water and the Dutch. "Of course, every chain is as strong as its weakest link, so there was communal pressure for everybody to do their bit to keep their farmland dry." Even today, this still makes sense in a nation where nearly a third of the land and half of homes still lie below sea level. Dutch polders (low-lying fields reclaimed from the sea) and dikes need to be maintained collectively.

    An interesting read that will lay out how the past is something to apply to hte future, and how certain issues such as regular flooding will be, must be handled by locals first and secondly by government.

    • Blazer 17.1

      Here's me thinking it would be because the Netherlands has lots of….dykes.

      • Sabine 17.1.1

        Is that english humor, or little boy in a pissoir humor?

        • Blazer

          They say humour is the best medicine…not sure about…humor.

          I was talking about….dams…I believe they contain…water.

          • In Vino

            Blazer – humor is the American spelling of British word humour. You ought to know that. Way up above you stuffed up a sentence by using 'their' where you should have used 'there'. English is Sabine's second language… I think she may be better at English than you are. You were talking of dykes, not dams, Check out the difference. And maybe you need to look up the French word that Sabine threw in. Pissoir. And was it you who questioned someone's humour earlier in thread?

            Sabine – I always enjoy reading what you write. (I used to be a teacher of German…)

            • Blazer

              Jawhol herr kapitan!

              Whats german for ..pedantic.

              I am not american,I assumed Sabine was not either.

              Anyway…Murphy's Law will mean I will correct you …very..soon.

            • Blazer

              Physician..heal thyself..

              'My experience is that most current anti-govt protestors who call Jacinda both Nazi and Communist don't know what the terns mean – just emotive terms for authoritarian or totalitarian, which is probably another word they would not understand, We have a bad lapse in literacy overall.'

              is 'terns' english,american german..or a typo.

              ' also dyke (dīk)


              a. An embankment of earth and rock built to prevent floods.

              b. Chiefly British A low wall, often of sod, dividing or enclosing lands.

              From reading Sabine's posts I am confident my english ability is light years ahead of …her.So saying….spelling and grammar nazis are beneath contempt in the online world.

              You either understand or you…don't.

              • In Vino

                Sure, like everyone I make typos. Terms, not terns. (You should know that terns are birds.)

                A dam has water on both sides. A dyke has water on one side only.

                English ability and overall language ability are two different things.

                • Blazer

                  What would have happened if the boy had not put his finger in the…dyke?

                  • In Vino

                    Well, then there would soon have been water on both sides of it. So be careful of when you say' "Pull your finger out." Truce?

    • Sabine 18.1

      Well I guess he did ask daddy for money, and then he hired some workers and developpers. But its good to know that the cheap/affordable interest rates have come to fruition and to the benefit of the very rich. Well done rich kid. Well done.

      • Alan 18.1.1

        There is also the aspect that 3 families can now live on a site that previously housed just one family, is that not what the government wants??

        • Sabine

          Yes, and Is Max Key not lucky that John Key is his daddy with lots of money to maximise untaxed capital gains on a property.

          Is it not nice how the Labour government benefits the very rich?

        • Molly

          The development focus was not on providing well-designed high density living for the occupiers. It was focused on meeting regulatory requirements for development and building while maximising profit. Max Key deserves the praise and censure that all other such developers deserve.

          This is where we are when we reach the point where any housing is good housing.

          (Irrespective of future proofing for transition resilience, environmental impact, community cohesion, occupant well-being, and housing and economic inequality.)

    • Blazer 18.2

      I guess he's put his plan to be NZ's next Justin Bieber on….hold.

      The National Govt really turned up the heat on booting state house tenants out of Glen Innes when a bloke called John Key became P.M.

      What a great foundation!blush

      • Blade 18.2.1

        Now we have the opposite. Kainga Ora, or whatever they are called now, cannot evict a tenant. I know this because I heard an interview with their Chief Executive. But, hey, it's only taxpayer money… plenty more where that came from. Or is there??

      • In Vino 18.2.2

        Fully agree this time..

  15. Blade 19

    I heard Kerre McIver lose the plot this morning with some woman whining that we need to listen to the gumment. Kerre called her a sad creature. That's heavy for Kerre. Kerre was berated a few calls later by a lady from Labour's Talk-Back Control.

    But it had me thinking. Given the ease of obtaining fraudulent vaccine passports, will Labour try introducing a National Identity Card that absorbs all other forms of official identification and contains a persons vaccine status?

    National wanted to do this with the then new drivers photo ID license.

    But how could it be sold? Quite easily I would suspect, given the dull intellect of many New Zealanders. Call it the 'Everything Card.' Have some tattooed bimbo on TV telling Aotearoa she went to the cafe, gyno and Winz without hassle because she has the 'Everything Card.' The ad could finish with Jacinda in empathy mode telling us to be kind and use the Everything Card.

    • Blazer 19.1

      Listening to Kerre McIvor!…how tragic…she is Heather Depressing-Allen,lite.

      • Blade 19.1.1

        What choice did I have? They chopped Banksie, Peter Williams, Sean Plunket and Tony Amos. Leightons gone. And Mikey isn't really a talkback host.

    • Dennis Frank 19.2

      You ought to put in a bid for the position of Luxon's political consultant. It had never even occurred to me that bimbo's get tatoos nowadays but I suspect you could be sharp enough to have noticed some. If they currently feature in a reality tv show, and you watch that, I withdraw my second sentence. wink

      • Gezza 19.2.1

        (Just a note that bimbos (plural) needs no apostrophe, and that adding one makes bimbo possessive, and thus, the sentence odd.

        No need to thank me, Dennis. Happy to help with advice for those in need of it. cool)

        • Dennis Frank

          Oh yeah, an elderly moment. Not the first in recent years! frown

          • Gezza

            No worries. Done the same thing meself, my bro. There are also circumstances where simply adding an "s" to pluralise a word just looks wrong – or makes the word spell something else unintended – and an apostrophe before the “s” seems the best option to fix the problem.

      • Blade 19.2.2

        To be honest Dennis, I don't like Luxon. And women getting tattoos;
        it's not some, it's many. Women who get tats have from my experience got issues. They seem not to be happy with their bodies. But as Jacinda's media consultant I would have a problem with what type of bimbo should front such an ad. Race would be the big issue. At the moment because of wokism, so many ads now feature overweight Maori, or surly Maori kids. That's a fact. The latest one is a shocker with a girl screaming to some fulla across the road as traffic goes past.

        If I presented Labour with a nicely dressed white middleclass girl who spoke well, had no tats and didn't try to be 'with it and cool,' I would be sacked….and called a racist.

        • Dennis Frank

          I don't like Luxon

          So is there another contender you reckon ought to lead the Nats?

          • Robert Guyton


          • Blade

            Yes. Simon Bridges. BTW, see bwaghorns comment below.

            • Gezza

              Simon had his shot at the top slot. He was unpopular and a bit of a barker at every passing car.

              Although he claims to have matured since, and he may have had elocution lessons – his accent in recent times doesn't seem to have had such a fingernail-on-blackboard, ear-grating quality, I don't think he's going to be able to woo enuf female voters back to National and away from Ardern.

              Nevertheless, if I was a National voter, I might have picked him instead of Luxon in view of Luxon's political inexperience.

              It's now become pretty obvious (to me, anyway) that Sir John is basically driving the Luxon entity, so I've gone off Luxon in a pretty big way.

            • Robert Guyton

              bwaghorn gets you.

        • Robert Guyton

          You "don't like women getting tattoos"?

          Do you like 'em when they've got'em?

          Did you like them before they got'em?

        • bwaghorn

          Why dont you fuck off to a blog that has other childish racist sexist dipshits ,?

          You're living proof not all blades are sharp.

        • Gezza

          so many ads now feature overweight Maori, or surly Maori kids. That's a fact. The latest one is a shocker with a girl screaming to some fulla across the road as traffic goes past.

          Dunno if I've seen this ad. What's it an ad for?

            • Molly

              "so many ads now feature overweight Maori, or surly Maori kids. That's a fact. The latest one is a shocker with a girl screaming to some fulla across the road as traffic goes past."

              Whoa. Thanks for the link.

              Two girls, one Maaori and one Pakeha, yelling across a busy road (the point) to someone who replies in kind to make a public announcement message about resetting speed limits. Your view is simplistic and misleading.

          • Gezza

            I'll find watching that ad irritating after a few repetitions, but I don't see what the problem is with the Māori kid in it?

            It's not obvious to me why they need to have such a long video to simply explain that they're reviewing speed limits around the country.

            But I suppose if a department has money to burn, their chosen ad people are going to spend it like it grows on trees.

            • Blade

              There's no problem. It was just an example of the problem a media consultant would have in the hypothetical example I gave above regarding the introduction of an identity card. I just don't think a Pakeha woman fronting such a campaign would be acceptable to Labour.

          • Blade

            Terrible. Absolutely terrible. I need to complain to the Broadcasting Standards Authority. I'm usually pouring a brandy and clipping my cigar around that time. What the… the BSA will no longer accept people like me making complaints!! Why aren't I surprised. This reminds of a trick I play on the Race Relations Office.

            • Red Blooded One

              Have you always been a [deleted] or is it a persona you bring out just for The Standard?

              [you probably would have got away with your first comment (which you deleted), because it had some actual political point. But we really don’t like personalised abuse aimed directly at other commenters here that has no other purpose other than to have a go at someone. It tends to start flame wars, or long slow burn resentments and people picking at each other – weka]

        • Molly

          If I presented Labour with a nicely dressed white middleclass girl who spoke well, had no tats and didn't try to be 'with it and cool,' I would be sacked….and called a racist.

          … and yet…. didn't they make such a person… the leader of the Labour party?

          • Gezza

            Hahahaha laugh


          • Blade

            Yes, they did, Most leaders are white. And Jacinda was a white woman and the last throw of the dice before an election. In fact, I was in a online debate with everyone telling me it was too late for Labour to change leaders leading up to the election. And that they should persevere with Andrew Little. I argued Labour had nothing to lose, it was so obvious to me. And so it was with Winston's help. But we aren't talking leadership; we would be talking about persuading people to accept a National Identity Card. That's a whole different story. Personally. I think Labour will legislate for such a card. It will tie in nicely with our move to digital currency. Banks are working overtime on that at the moment. It is becoming harder to use cash in society and for bank transactions over the counter.

            [RL: You are starting to step on my moderator toes. Denigrating or sneering at whole groups of people by their skin colour – and I don’t care what shade – is not acceptable. Avoid it where possible and you will also avoid taking a sudden holiday on my account.]

            • RedLogix

              Mod note for you.

            • Dennis Frank

              talking about persuading people to accept a National Identity Card. .. I think Labour will legislate for such a card

              If so, it ought to be called a Labour Identity Card. Deferring to the National brand would be a grievous error. Anyone in Labour smart enough to figure that out? Thought not.

              However nonpartisan framing would be more sensible, eh? Personal ID would work. Or Kiwifolk.

            • Blade

              Dear Moderator. The good news is I'm on holiday soon. However, could you point out where I have denigrated people ( myself included) because of skin colour? And what was not factual in the comment with your warning under – or was that a general warning?

              [RL: It was a heads up – I’ve been moderating here for over a decade and I can tell when someone is heading onto thin ice. I would much sooner you reflect on that, than have to bother with the paperwork on my side.]

  16. Rosemary McDonald 20

    More interesting research from our cousins in Ontario that examines Numbers Needed to Exclude (of unvaccinated persons…aka the 'fucking filth') in order to prevent one transmission of Sars CoV 2.

    Findings: The NNEs suggest that at least 1,000 unvaccinated people likely need to be excluded to prevent one SARS-CoV-2 transmission event in most types of settings for many jurisdictions, notably Australia, California, Canada, China, France, Israel, and others.

    Conclusions: Vaccines are beneficial, but the high NNEs suggest that excluding unvaccinated people has negligible benefits for reducing transmissions in many jurisdictions across the globe. This is because unvaccinated people are likely not at significant risk — in absolute terms — of transmitting SARS-CoV-2 to others in most types of settings since current baseline transmission risks are negligible. Consideration of the harms of exclusion is urgently needed, including staffing shortages from losing unvaccinated healthcare workers, unemployment/unemployability, financial hardship for unvaccinated people, and the creation of a class of citizens who are not allowed to fully participate in many areas of society.

    For the data junkies …there are swags of the stuff in the full version accessed through the linked page.

    There was some discussion here on TS the other day regarding this issue.

    The discussion was not if the exclusions those of us who have decided not to partake of the Pfizer Product were justified scientifically, clinically or even statistically but what could be the long term societal effects of such exclusions.

    FWIW some of us have already looked at some of the factors these researchers have incorporated into this work. We have been closely following what has been happening in jurisdictions who are further down the Covid road than us, here in relatively naive New Zild. Our decision not to risk potential adverse effects from the Pfizer Product most definitely involve scrutiny of some of these data trends.

    • weka 20.1

      thanks, that's interesting.

      from what I can tell, the mandates are as much about pressuring people to get vaccinated as they are about lowering spread. I don't believe we would have mandates if it was just the pressure. I won't be surprised if the mandates are temporary (let's see how NZ gets through next winter), especially if 3 monthly boosters are required. But I'm not overly confident Labour will hold its nerve generally. I'm really glad we have another full year before election year so we don't have that pressure in the mix.

      • Rosemary McDonald 20.1.1

        I won't be surprised if the mandates are temporary …

        As founding members of the 'Fucking Filth' Club Peter and I have a deal of discussion about this. We vary in our opinions, and too much Natrad can leave us infuriated and determined that the Government could lift the mandates tomorrow and we'd still feel like lepers.

        Whatever emerges in the future…research like the two papers I've brought to the attention of the TS community today will not enjoy any time in the media spotlight despite the sterling work done by the scientists and academics. They support to some extent our, the unvaccinated, choices…and that won't ever do.

        22nd October is what finished me. There's absolutely no going back from that day…

        • weka

          there's no excuse for how badly the left and Labour have handled the framing of this. It's not just the mandates, it's the ostracisation, ridicule, and deplorables comments. Fucking unbelievable that at this point in history we are still this bad at understanding what makes community. I don't know if we will recover from this aspect of it and it couldn't be happening at a worse time given the other coming storms.

        • Molly

          The video of our PM talking about two classes of people, was the one that encapsulated the real disdain of government. I'm also dismayed at the vitriol here on The Standard, where I had some expectation of considered responses. I admire your strong constitution for repeatedly entering the fray in order to be heard.

    • Molly 20.2

      "Consideration of the harms of exclusion is urgently needed, including staffing shortages from losing unvaccinated healthcare workers, unemployment/unemployability, financial hardship for unvaccinated people, and the creation of a class of citizens who are not allowed to fully participate in many areas of society."

      Thanks, Rosemary. The paper contributes to the evidence that shows that it is necessary to move the discussion on from the low-level:

      'One jab good, Two jabs better. All humans are equal but some are more equal than others.'

      (With the implication No Jabs are 'Pigs' ie. not worthy of humanity)

      • weka 20.2.1

        (aren't the pigs the Good ones in Animal Farm? It's been a long time)

        • Molly

          Started off as saviours, became the replacement despots.

          Bad analogy on that count, but needed some reference for the disdain shown for the unvaccinated in public discourse. laugh

          (With the implication No Jabs are ‘Farmers’ ie. not worthy of bestiality) – Couldn’t get this more analogous descriptor to work.

    • RedLogix 20.3

      Thank you Rosemary for this. I work with process numbers all the time – and this paper confirms my intuition. That excluding the unvaccinated was more about emotions than science.

      Also what Molly said above .

    • Tricledrown 20.4

      Medrevix claims this link you have put up is only a pre print and not to be used as it has had no peer review at all.

      NZ's cases show that covid is being spread and contracted by unvaccinated people.

      The only peer reviewed research shows that indoor household settings are where transmission rates are similar.NZ Hospitalisations and deaths 95% are unvaccinated.

      Your propaganda is admirable victimising yourself by calling yourself fn filth is trying to shift the narrative.

      The % of unvaccinated is getting smaller everyday so it's everyone else who is taking a risk to protect you from a greater risk.

      You are desperately clinging to the whole world is against you.

      You have made a decision that's your responsibility don't try and shift it on to others.

  17. Tony Veitch (not etc.) 21

    Well, I've watched Luxon three times in question time, and each time Jacinda has not been at all troubled by his questions. Just the reverse, she highlighted today the inevitable consequence of Natz policies.

    Sorry folks on the right, I don't think Luxon's the great white hope many think he is.

    PS Robertson wiping the floor of Bridges.

    • Robert Guyton 21.1

      The Speakers quip about the Finance minister being "over-inflated"

      Whadda ya make of that?

      Edit: Luxon’s got nuttin’.

      • Tony Veitch (not etc.) 21.1.1

        Loved it. Unfortunately Mallard damped down Grant in full flight.

        All in all, question time showed a government full of confidence and on top of all issues. Even Willis’ intensity countered by Poto with ease.

    • Blazer 21.2

      Robertson far too sharp for Mr Bridges and Rimmer.

      Christopher7 would do well to avoid any inter action with him.

      • Robert Guyton 21.2.1

        A bit lumpen, that Christopher Luxon.

        Bridges must soon learn that he can't out-smart or out-talk Robertson.

        Has the Nat deputy spoken aloud yet?

        • Tricledrown

          Nicola Willis was on RNZ early this morning and sounded absolutely terrible a continual whiney nag session.

          • Robert Guyton

            She can't help her voice – yet. Her trainers will school her on breathing etc. Bring her down a register and out of the mosquito band.

  18. Blade 22

    I'm picking 2022 to be the worst year in New Zealand's history. Both economically and socially. A brain drain will probably be on the cards. And who'd want to come to NZ with our track record for hard lock downs? Seems the exodus will be starting as soon as possible. In my letterbox was a flyer from Lite n' Easy, an Aussie food process company with bases in Sydney and Brisbane. They want to recruit workers. They will probably pay close to $30 an hour, and there seems to be a good support package.

    • bwaghorn 22.1

      Start a give a little for your ticket I'll kick a few $ in .

    • Puckish Rogue 22.2

      Still got a way to go to match 1918 I reckon

      'No other event has killed so many New Zealanders in so short a space of time. While the First World War claimed the lives of more than 18,000 New Zealand soldiers over four years, the second wave of the 1918 influenza epidemic killed about 9000 people in less than two months.'

      Not forgetting WWI:

    • Blazer 22.3

      Carpe Diem….!..'.Brain drain'!enlightenedlaugh

    • Robert Guyton 22.4

      You're such a wet blanket, Blade!

      After a while, those start to suck the living heat out of a body…

    • weka 22.5

      And who'd want to come to NZ with our track record for hard lock downs?

      Have you heard of the traffic light system that's replacing the hard lock downs?

      Biting my tongue so I don't quote Muldoon.

      • Blade 22.5.1

        Yes, a great quip. However, it may not be funny. I think too many on this blog are trying to make the facts fit their ideology. There are lots of pissed off people around. That includes many on the Left.

        The traffic light system. That's not Jacinda's preferred option. That is shown by Labour ignoring advice from Ashley Bloomfield. It could all fall apart for a variety of reasons and Jacinda will go back to what she knows best. But all that is academic – the damage has been done regarding our reputation overseas – even with our very low death rate.

        • Tricledrown

          Blade looks like a lot of envy in your comment.

          So how is our reputation overseas.

          Where is your evidence.

          Just about all the overseas articles I have read are praising Jacinda.

          While all the overseas news about National is how National are struggling for relevance.not unlike your self.

    • Pete 22.6

      Unfortunately when the incurable whingers go they'll still be in mode via electronic means. They'll tell us how this place should be and imply if they were in charge things would be so much better.

  19. Matiri 23

    As we all come to grips with life under the traffic life system for the foreseeable future, things could be much, much worse /sarc. Norway has just banned alcohol in restaurants and bars to try and halt the spread of Omicron. Just imagine the whinging and moaning from Hospitality!!

    • Robert Guyton 23.1

      Alcohol's a carrier for Omicron?!?

      That's a sobering thought!

    • weka 23.2

      Lol, fits of apoplexy in godzone.

      pity they don't say why the Norwegians are banning alcohol.

      • joe90 23.2.1

        Staff as vectors?


        Objective To assess how different bans on serving alcohol in Norwegian bars and restaurants were related to the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in bartenders and waiters and in persons in any occupation.

        Methods In 25 392 bartenders and waiters and 1 496 328 persons with other occupations (mean (SD) age 42.0 (12.9) years and 51.8% men), we examined the weekly rates of workers tested and detected with SARS-CoV-2, 1–10 weeks before and 1–5 weeks after implementation of different degrees of bans on serving alcohol in pubs and restaurants, across 102 Norwegian municipalities with: (1) full blanket ban, (2) partial ban with hourly restrictions (eg, from 22:00 hours) or (3) no ban, adjusted for age, sex, testing behaviour and population size.

        Results By 4 weeks after the implementation of ban, COVID-19 infection among bartenders and waiters had been reduced by 60% (from 2.8 (95% CI 2.0 to 3.6) to 1.1 (95% CI 0.5 to 1.6) per 1000) in municipalities introducing full ban, and by almost 50% (from 2.5 (95% CI 1.5 to 3.5) to 1.3 (95% CI 0.4 to 2.2) per 1000) in municipalities introducing partial ban. A similar reduction within 4 weeks was also observed for workers in all occupations, both in municipalities with full (from 1.3 (95% CI 1.3 to 1.4) to 0.9 (95% CI 0.9 to 1.0)) and partial bans (from 1.2 (95% CI 1.1 to 1.3) to 0.5 (95% CI 0.5 to 0.6)).

        Conclusion Partial bans on serving alcohol in bars and restaurants may be similarly associated with declines in confirmed COVID-19 infection as full bans.

        18 January 2021


        With the sale of alcohol banned much of it ends up in the public sewage system, and some of it is poured directly in the venues’ toilets.

        In order to avoid a build-up of froth, venues in Norway are now barred from pouring away more than 1,000 litres of beer day

  20. Molly 25

    Acceptance without exception, from Canada 2017.

    University sued because it failed to act on male student in his 40s with 'baby role play' fetish who was aroused by English professor reading children's books and sent her pictures wearing just a diaper –

    Katrin Roth, Vancouver Island University's former director of human rights and workplace safety ended up filing the complaint alleging the Nanaimo university failed to adequately support and protect professors, staff and students.

    In 105-page complaint to the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal, several women became so disturbed by the man, they had to change their daily routines to avoid him.

    'On the day he included a photo of himself wearing nothing but a diaper. My heart went to my throat because it was then that I recognized that in his interactions with me all along, he had been manipulating me into this form of role play,' she said.

    Ledwell-Hunt alleges that when she alerted VIU administration that the student was sexually harassing her, the university failed to take action. Instead, they asked her instead to continue teaching the student. She refused.

    …On two occasions the man is alleged to have asked the university's nurse to change his dirty diapers, although she refused the second time.

    In fact, it was only after that nurse spoke with other VIU colleagues that she learned about his inappropriate manner with other employees.

    …Shelley Legin, the university's chief financial officer and vice-president of administration has said the university is confident it took appropriate actions to maintain safety for everyone on campus.

    'We will follow our procedures and policies, our risk-mitigation protocols and risk assessment protocols to make sure we continue to make VIU a great place to learn,' she said.

    The whole article is worth the read, and explains how one person's permitted behaviour can negatively affect many.

    • Dennis Frank 25.1

      Seems harmless, but I do get why some women felt threatened. My preliminary take is that the 40 year old man is emotionally frozen at around 1-2 years old, with his identity sufficiently warped to conform with that.

      I presume that his attendance at university is due to politically correct ideology. You know, what happened here back in the '90s or thereabouts. Lunatic asylums closed, nutcases released into the community due to the fashionable delusion that they were capable of leading normal lives.

      So I presume the authorities in Canada take the view that the guy, no matter how wacky he behaves, is just another citizen with human rights. The right to irritate others being the one that is relevant to his behaviour. Excellent example of surrealism as political praxis… 🙄

      • Molly 25.1.1

        It's 'harmless' if the person only participates in it with other consenting adults.

        This is not the case here.

        (Although I suspect you may be right about the University conflating sexual fetish with identity expression.)

        • Dennis Frank

          Yes, I take the point. Mental health harm isn't evident to third parties. Even if only apprehension due to disturbed peace of mind. The concerned women may feel there's more to it than that.

          • Molly

            Being used as 'props' in someone else's sex fetish, when you are just working or studying is objectification, sexual harassment and sexual coercion at minimum, possible sexual assault in terms of compelled participation.

            All aspects that should easily be evident to a third party, I would expect.

            • Dennis Frank

              I would expect

              Why? Third parties tend not to have psychoanalytic aptitude. Ability to discern the role-playing of others tends to be limited by motivation to focus on the situation (or lack of), recognition of psychodynamics due to familiarity (or lack of), interpretation of the motives of those involved etc. Subtle factors & nuances are often not apparent to observers.

    • Molly 25.2

      As follow up I tried to find out the result of the complaint, which was initially turned down.

      The B.C. Human Rights Tribunal did not allow a complaint from “K.R.” to proceed this summer, but she was given additional time to amend her complaint, according to a screening decision written by Diana Juricevic, tribunal chairwoman.

      According to the decision, the complainant said she became aware in November 2016 that the harassment had been taking place over a two-year period.

      “She describes that conduct as: sending sexually suggestive photos to women, writing in an ‘explicit, sexually exhibitionistic manner,’ following women to isolated areas, asking women out on dates repeatedly, leering and staring at women, and making women feel unsafe,” the decision noted. “She says there were instances where the student ‘pretended to seek routine services but then proceeded to surprise and involve non-consenting women in sexually arousing fantasies and role plays.’”

      Juricevic wrote that the central allegations of K.R.’s complaint are that the university “failed to undertake a prompt, thorough and fair investigation or to follow its human rights and prevention of harassment policies and procedures,” but noted that the complaint “does not allege sufficient facts” and isn’t specific enough in identifying the women whose human rights are alleged to have been violated.

      But apparently was accepted in 2018.

      The B.C. Human Rights Tribunal will hear a complaint against Vancouver Island University in a case regarding a male student on its Cowichan campus who favoured diapers and baby talk.

      Unable to find if BCHR issued a decision on their website, or their search portal. Perhaps someone else with more skills will be able to.

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    The coalition Government’s legislation to restore the rights of communities to determine whether to introduce Māori wards has passed its first reading in Parliament, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “Divisive changes introduced by the previous government denied local communities the ability to determine whether to establish Māori wards.” The ...
    3 days ago
  • First RMA amendment Bill introduced to Parliament
    The coalition Government has today introduced legislation to slash the tangle of red and green tape throttling some of New Zealand’s key sectors, including farming, mining and other primary industries. RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop says the Government is committed to  unlocking development and investment while ensuring the environment is ...
    4 days ago
  • Government welcomes EPA decision
    The decision by Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to approve the continued use of hydrogen cyanamide, known as Hi-Cane, has been welcomed by Environment Minister Penny Simmonds and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay.  “The EPA decision introduces appropriate environmental safeguards which will allow kiwifruit and other growers to use Hi-Cane responsibly,” Ms ...
    4 days ago
  • Speech to Employers and Manufacturers Association: Relief for today, hope for tomorrow
    Kia ora, Ngā mihi nui ki a koutou kātoa Tāmaki Herenga Waka, Tāmaki Herenga tangata Ngā mihi ki ngā mana whenua o tēnei rohe Ngāti Whātua ō Ōrākei me nga iwi kātoa kua tae mai. Mauriora. Greetings everyone. Thank you to the EMA for hosting this event. Let me acknowledge ...
    4 days ago
  • Government invests in 1,500 more social homes
    The coalition Government is investing in social housing for New Zealanders who are most in need of a warm dry home, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says. Budget 2024 will allocate $140 million in new funding for 1,500 new social housing places to be provided by Community Housing Providers (CHPs), not ...
    5 days ago
  • $24 million boost for Gumboot Friday
    Thousands more young New Zealanders will have better access to mental health services as the Government delivers on its commitment to fund the Gumboot Friday initiative, says Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Budget 2024 will provide $24 million over four years to contract the ...
    5 days ago
  • Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill passes first reading
    The Coalition Government’s Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill, which will improve tenancy laws and help increase the supply of rental properties, has passed its first reading in Parliament says Housing Minister Chris Bishop. “The Bill proposes much-needed changes to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 that will remove barriers to increasing private ...
    5 days ago
  • Montecassino Commemorative Address, Cassino War Cemetery
    Standing here in Cassino War Cemetery, among the graves looking up at the beautiful Abbey of Montecassino, it is hard to imagine the utter devastation left behind by the battles which ended here in May 1944. Hundreds of thousands of shells and bombs of every description left nothing but piled ...
    5 days ago
  • First Reading – Repeal of Section 7AA of the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989
    I present a legislative statement on the Oranga Tamariki (Repeal of Section 7AA) Amendment Bill Mr. Speaker, I move that the Oranga Tamariki (Repeal of Section 7AA) Amendment Bill be now read a first time. I nominate the Social Services and Community Committee to consider the Bill. Thank you, Mr. ...
    5 days ago
  • First reading of 7AA’s repeal: progress for children
    The Bill to repeal Section 7AA of the Oranga Tamariki Act has had its first reading in Parliament today. The Bill reaffirms the Coalition Government’s commitment to the care and safety of children in care, says Minister for Children Karen Chhour.  “When I became the Minister for Children, I made ...
    5 days ago
  • China Business Summit 2024
    Kia ora koutou, good morning, and zao shang hao. Thank you Fran for the opportunity to speak at the 2024 China Business Summit – it’s great to be here today. I’d also like to acknowledge: Simon Bridges - CEO of the Auckland Chamber of Commerce. His Excellency Ambassador - Wang ...
    5 days ago
  • Assisted depatures from New Caledonia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has confirmed a New Zealand Government plane will head to New Caledonia in the next hour in the first in a series of proposed flights to begin bringing New Zealanders home.    “New Zealanders in New Caledonia have faced a challenging few days - and bringing ...
    6 days ago
  • Assisted departures from New Caledonia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has confirmed a New Zealand Government plane will head to New Caledonia in the next hour in the first in a series of proposed flights to begin bringing New Zealanders home.  “New Zealanders in New Caledonia have faced a challenging few days - and bringing them ...
    6 days ago
  • Government to rollout roadside drug testing
    The Coalition Government will introduce legislation this year that will enable roadside drug testing as part of our commitment to improve road safety and restore law and order, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Alcohol and drugs are the number one contributing factor in fatal road crashes in New Zealand. In ...
    6 days ago
  • Minister responds to review of Kāinga Ora
    The Government has announced a series of immediate actions in response to the independent review of Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says. “Kāinga Ora is a large and important Crown entity, with assets of $45 billion and over $2.5 billion of expenditure each year. It ...
    6 days ago
  • Pseudoephedrine back on shelves
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour is pleased that Pseudoephedrine can now be purchased by the general public to protect them from winter illness, after the coalition government worked swiftly to change the law and oversaw a fast approval process by Medsafe. “Pharmacies are now putting the medicines back on their ...
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand-China Business Summit
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Da jia hao.  Good morning everyone.   Prime Minister Luxon, your excellency, a great friend of New Zealand and my friend Ambassador Wang, Mayor of what he tells me is the best city in New Zealand, Wayne Brown, the highly respected Fran O’Sullivan, Champion of the Auckland business ...
    7 days ago
  • New measures to protect powerlines from trees
    Energy Minister Simeon Brown has announced that the Government will make it easier for lines firms to take action to remove vegetation from obstructing local powerlines. The change will ensure greater security of electricity supply in local communities, particularly during severe weather events.  “Trees or parts of trees falling on ...
    1 week ago
  • Wairarapa Moana ki Pouakani win top Māori dairy farming award
    Wairarapa Moana ki Pouakani were the top winners at this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy awards recognising the best in Māori dairy farming. Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka announced the winners and congratulated runners-up, Whakatōhea Māori Trust Board, at an awards celebration also attended by Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Finance Minister ...
    1 week ago
  • DJ Fred Again – Assurance report received
    "On the 27th of March, I sought assurances from the Chief Executive, Department of Internal Affairs, that the Department’s correct processes and policies had been followed in regards to a passport application which received media attention,” says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “I raised my concerns after being ...
    1 week ago
  • District Court Judges appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins has announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges, to replace Judges who have recently retired. Peter James Davey of Auckland has been appointed a District Court Judge with a jury jurisdiction to be based at Whangarei. Mr Davey initially started work as a law clerk/solicitor with ...
    1 week ago
  • Unions should put learning ahead of ideology
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour is calling on the Post Primary Teachers’ Association (PPTA) to put ideology to the side and focus on students’ learning, in reaction to the union holding paid teacher meetings across New Zealand about charter schools.     “The PPTA is disrupting schools up and down the ...
    1 week ago
  • Craig Stobo appointed as chair of FMA
    Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Andrew Bayly today announced the appointment of Craig Stobo as the new chair of the Financial Markets Authority (FMA). Mr Stobo takes over from Mark Todd, whose term expired at the end of April. Mr Stobo’s appointment is for a five-year term. “The FMA plays ...
    1 week ago
  • Budget 2024 invests in lifeguards and coastguard
    Surf Life Saving New Zealand and Coastguard New Zealand will continue to be able to keep people safe in, on, and around the water following a funding boost of $63.644 million over four years, Transport Minister Simeon Brown and Associate Transport Minister Matt Doocey say. “Heading to the beach for ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand and Tuvalu reaffirm close relationship
    New Zealand and Tuvalu have reaffirmed their close relationship, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says.  “New Zealand is committed to working with Tuvalu on a shared vision of resilience, prosperity and security, in close concert with Australia,” says Mr Peters, who last visited Tuvalu in 2019.  “It is my pleasure ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand calls for calm, constructive dialogue in New Caledonia
    New Zealand is gravely concerned about the situation in New Caledonia, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.  “The escalating situation and violent protests in Nouméa are of serious concern across the Pacific Islands region,” Mr Peters says.  “The immediate priority must be for all sides to take steps to de-escalate the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand welcomes Samoa Head of State
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon met today with Samoa’s O le Ao o le Malo, Afioga Tuimalealiifano Vaaletoa Sualauvi II, who is making a State Visit to New Zealand. “His Highness and I reflected on our two countries’ extensive community links, with Samoan–New Zealanders contributing to all areas of our national ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Island Direct eligible for SuperGold Card funding
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has announced that he has approved Waiheke Island ferry operator Island Direct to be eligible for SuperGold Card funding, paving the way for a commercial agreement to bring the operator into the scheme. “Island Direct started operating in November 2023, offering an additional option for people ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Further sanctions against Russia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further sanctions on 28 individuals and 14 entities providing military and strategic support for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.  “Russia is directly supported by its military-industrial complex in its illegal aggression against Ukraine, attacking its sovereignty and territorial integrity. New Zealand condemns all entities and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • One year on from Loafers Lodge
    A year on from the tragedy at Loafers Lodge, the Government is working hard to improve building fire safety, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says. “I want to share my sincere condolences with the families and friends of the victims on the anniversary of the tragic fire at Loafers ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Pre-Budget speech to Auckland Business Chamber
    Ka nui te mihi kia koutou. Kia ora and good afternoon, everyone. Thank you so much for having me here in the lead up to my Government’s first Budget. Before I get started can I acknowledge: Simon Bridges – Auckland Business Chamber CEO. Steve Jurkovich – Kiwibank CEO. Kids born ...
    2 weeks ago

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