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Open mike 14/02/2010

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 14th, 2010 - 102 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

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

Comment on whatever takes your fancy.

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

Step right up to the mike…

102 comments on “Open mike 14/02/2010 ”

  1. lprent 1

    Ok I have a topic. The new site is almost cleared for release. That means I get some time available.

    I was thinking about finding or writing a plugin to limit teenagers from babbling too much about too little (ie the twitter style).

    I was thinking of something that would limit the number of comments that could be posted during a given time span. Other ideas that came to mind were to set a minimum comment size frequencies (weighted towards longer comments). Check for usage of words – if they are going to write here then they should improve themselves by increasing their vocabulary.

    I’d add it to the moderation policy..

    All in favour say aye… (and KT your votes (if more than one) are deemed invalid). 😈

    Of course it’d be better and easier if teenagers moderated themselves…

    Update: Just to make it clear. This would be targeted to particular identities in much the same way that we ban people for short periods.

    • mummybot 1.1

      Aye – but you will have to be careful. Don’t want it to exclude posts that are ‘worthwhile’ for the sake of preventing the teen version of Jerry Springer from breaking out.

    • RedLogix 1.2

      It’s mostly us old farts who enjoy ‘long form’ blogging; while whole texting/twitter thing has a firm grasp of the younger generation. As much as I find twitter dreck annoying and facile, it’s also true that The Standard is already a bit of a dinosaur museum as it is and needs to keep the door open to fresh blood.

      I’m wondering if there isn’t some way of working both long and short form blogging in the same environment.

    • prism 1.3

      captcha yes
      lprent It is good to be able to comment in a few short words when someone nails a situation well and/or is very funny, or is just off beam.

      You might then have a cut off of say three short comments in a specified time so we don’t get the annoying tail of right/no wrong, stupid/no you’re stupid, dragggging on.

    • gitmo 1.4

      Make IB perform all moderation duties for 1 week – problem solved.

      • lprent 1.4.1

        He is our random moderating factor. I suspect that continuous duty would increase the irritability. We’d like to keep some people commenting….

    • Nay.
      Just because I’m young doesn’t mean I make stupid comments.
      Old people make some good comments, some bad.
      Young people make some good comments, some bad.
      It would be stupid to block people for commenting just because of their age.
      I know this is not twitter, I have my own twitter and use it.
      I know this is not facebook, I’ve made a decision not to have one so their would be no need for me to use The Standard like my facebook page.

      Limiting comments over a period of time would not only restrict me it would restrict other (left-wing) commenters. i.e felix, BLiP, Draco etc….

      If you were to make a decision I would suggest the limiting comments over time.

      Some short comments get straight to the point and are quite effective.

      I’m taking a week long break from The Standard. (Bomber: Here I come!)

      I trust this issue will be resolved fairly with in the UDHR 🙂

      What every decision is made I will respect it and not try and avoid the consequences.

      • Kevin Welsh 1.5.1

        Don’t let the door hit you in the ass.

      • QoT 1.5.2

        Your comments aren’t stupid because you’re young. They’re stupid because you’re a troll. If you actually are a teen your youth simply makes your stupidity more understandable.

  2. Luxated 2

    While I find spam to be annoying I also find flood protection to be equally annoying when set too conservatively. If it was something more than just a dumb filter (no more than x votes in y minutes) and took into account factors such time spent on the website and length of comments then I would be more supportive.

    Of course such a filter would be harder to code and balance as well as being slightly more exploitable than ordinary flood protection.

    • lprent 2.1

      We have the usual anti-spam protection. So I’d just target on people who leave a hell of a lot of comments. Writing something isn’t a problem – it is what I do for a living. Finding time is the usual issue.

  3. Aye – but I am not sure KT is actually a teen. Most of the teens I know have far more sophisticated debating styles.

    • The Voice of Reason 3.1

      As long as it can be done in a way that doesn’t filter wit, I’m in favour. I’ve been guilty of feeding the teen troll myself and even though it’s easy pickings, it does get boring.

      For mine, Mickey, I do believe KT is a teen. You don’t get that level of sophistry, smugness and the complete absence of self depreciation from people who have experienced either sex or work.

      I reckon his dad is a probably something boring like a bank auditor, too.

      • Kevin Welsh 3.1.1

        Funny you should say that TVOR, I was wondering the just other day if the little twat was related to Ellis in Wonderland, or at a pinch, Brett Dallas.

      • Nick 3.1.2

        Actually I go to KiwiTeen’s school. He’s 14. He’s quite the sarcastic ‘nerd’. The thing is, he actually isn’t smart. He just wears glasses and fails at PE.
        His dad’s a lawyer.

    • prism 3.2

      Yes I wonder about KT. Sounds as pompous and auto-mechanical as Tim Ellis.

  4. It is very funny sometimes with the witty retorts and all but my vote is aye because there is so much to do this year – so many challenges from the gnats

  5. tc 5

    Aye….brought about by a few but should make reading the comments a better experience than is often the case when certain trollmongers get onto a thread.

    On another topic isn’t it depressing how RNZ allow key and others soapboxes, this outlet is meant to apply intellect and debate to matters….key yesterday was being interviewed along preset questions with no opportunity to deviate from script when he lied abut Oz tax rates, contradicted himself etc…..all ignored.

    Morning report particularly appears neutered at times and the other week the grumpy scot opened a can of worms about his performance bonus being impacted by the XT outages….great chance to get on record some further details as a marker……totally ignored a golden opportunity to see what $5m p.a. gets telecom customers.

    A PM reforming the tax not knowing Oz rates ? Come on righty’s that’s like a surgeon not knowing where to make the first incision…….or one who doesn’t care if the patient gets better…….oh I think I just got it…….NURSE !!!!

    • i agree about their treatment of Reynolds, all he has to say is he’s “luvud” and then that’s all ok – he still totally deserves a $5M despite being ultimately responsible for 2 monster screw ups, because he’s a bit angry.
      i wish RNZ could find its spine again.

  6. Check for usage of words if they are going to “LIVE” here then they should improve themselves by increasing their vocabulary.

    hmmmm…nah 🙂

  7. TightyRighty 7

    Good to see russel norman getting slapped down on q + a. nothing but reasons why we can’t do anything, and then getting his own reasons thrown in his face. with no sense of compromise, it’s no wonder the greens can’t make cabinet.

    • In the early -90’s I put a lot of time and effort, and even some money, into helping the Greens start up and get established but I haven’t voted Green for the last two elections. Regrettably under Fitzsimons and with ‘another planet’-like morons like the eminently forgettable guy with the dreadlocks they proved a waste of space. All they’ve achieved in Parliament is branding Green issues with a morris-dancing, away-with-the-fairies ethos while getting up everyone’s noses with a pointless, ineffective and not particularly Green ‘anti-smacking’ law.

      As Obama is now discovering in the States you can’t get anywhere trying to be nice to your political opponents and including them. Politicians like Key, English, Clarke and Mallard will lie out of every orifice without even noticing it and think integrity is a weakness. Saving the Planet from humanity is going to take a long, hard, painful and bitter fight none of the wusses currently on the Green ticket in Parliament are even remotely up to.

    • andy (the other one) 7.2

      Paul Holmes did a terrible job moderating what should have been a good discussion of pros and cons of mining in the conservation estate.

      Pauls obvious bias were shown up by his frankly rude dismissal of Norman’s ideas and talking points.

      I was disgusted when Holmes directed this comment ‘if you give a clear answer we might get it on the news’ to Doug Gordon from the Minerals Industry Assoc. I take from the comment that the points from Q & A for one news at 6pm are pre crafted by what questions are asked on Q & A, they manufacture the news instead of reporting it.

      Paul was very grumpy this morning, Millie must be in the Herald on sunday again 🙂

      • the sprout 7.2.1

        no haven’t you heard, Key has fixed the P problem, that’s what they’ve been so busy with and why it just seems like they’ve done nothing.

  8. prism 8

    tr Isn’t politics a great spectator sport! Watch them pollies squawk on tv and criticise them without any responsibility on yourself to come up with better plans. Russel Norman is being realistic if he doesn’t come forth with certain guaranteed results of suggested policies.

    • TightyRighty 8.1

      russell only squawked, he had nothing in response to doug. i agree with the other andy above in that paul did a terrible job of moderating, but russell was awful. doug at least was clear about where he wanted to go. stocktake, then public discussion on the issue. russell, nothing, not ever, we will not even have discussion. if he engaged on the issue rather than parroting his mantra (which he only pays lip service too) then the greens could achieve more and have a better chance of being taken seriously when the discussion starts. but no, russell being russell could not bring himself to come to the table with something useful.

      • Pascal's bookie 8.1.1

        nah bollocks.

        Russ was clear that there is over 80% of the country available for mining. we are only talking about the bits in schedule 4. Bits of land that have already been deemed important.

        The mining lobby thinks that there is no land that should be set aside no matter what lies under it. If the last few remaining percent of untouched land has anything good in it, then the lobby wants a crack at it, intrinsic values be damned.

        They’re the extremists here.

        When stuff gets put in s4, that’s the time for them to have their say and make their case. That’s the case-by-case looksie. They failed to get their way then and now they just want a do over. Which makes schedule 4 meaningless.

        It’s like if you put something in a trust, re shouldn’t oughtta be able to turn around and suck it back out again because you fancy a week in Majorca. If the trust is to have meaning, it has to be stuck to.

        In this case, the law says what it says. The lands are to be protected for their intrinsic value. That means there is no legitimate grounds for even doing a ‘stocktake’. There is no ‘stock’ to count. They are not to be looked at that way. Even their ‘value’ as tourism assets is only allowable insofar that it does not affect the intrinsic value of the lands remaining as they are.

        That’s what the law says. That’s what the law is for. But somehow respecting the law and the purpose it was written for is an extremist position.

        • TightyRighty

          Um, i don’t remember to much in the way of discussion when areas were placed in S4. but anyway, I am not advocating the wholesale mining of these areas. however if there is value in using some, and i mean a small some, land for mining that is as environmentally and aesthetically pleasing as modern mining allows, and can show a much greater cost/benefit ratio than leaving it for tourism, then it should be up for discussion. not to be definitely mined, but to discuss it. i’m just interested to see the outcome of the survey.

          • Pascal's bookie

            Over 80 percent of NZ is available for mining right now. So you should be happy then.

            These other lands have been set aside for their intrinsic value. Just these small areas of unique stature (not just aesthetic or tourism based, some of them don’t look like much but are habitats or headwaters or wetlands and suchlike), have been set aside and yet you want the right to dig them up. Not saying you’re planning to, just want the right to.

            It’s pretty clear which side has the actual extremists. ffs, not one scrap of the country can be set aside as untouchable. You have to fucking ‘stocktake’ everything. A few measly percent left untouched is too much.

            It’s not about a cost/benefit ratio vs tourism either. Those are extrinsic values (uses to which the lands can be put). The conservation act protects lands for their intrinsic value, as ends to themselves, not as means to an end.

  9. IMHO i think any adjustment of the Standard’s behaviour in response to KT is a victory for the rightwing non-teen troll he is (after all, since when does a teen EVER refer to themselves as a generic ‘teen’, especially when they’re trying to get themselves taken seriously – it’s a term non-teens use to describe people in that age bracket).

    auto-moderating by size or frequency will preclude the occasional snappy vollies of interaction between sub-groups of commentators that help to promote the culture and community of this blog.

    if there is a problem with an infantile troll, the remedy should be directed solely and specifically at them, not at the entire population of commenters.

  10. Shouldn’t the maori party be going back to their electorates and constituents for a mandate on whether to support raising GST rather than outright toeing the nats party line ?

    Its not what they campaigned on and if the foreshore and seabed issue doesn’t get resolved then what…does their one trick party status get shut down ?

    It was interesting to see Ranginui Walker saying the elite iwi reps were consulting with the state and then reporting back to the individual Maori nations. And therein lies the problem for those who think Maori can be represented by one party and unified under one nation. The treaty doesnt allow for it and neither it seems do Maori.

    Then there is the veiled threat of Sharples walking out on National and approaching Labour if they cant guarantee his continuing salary.

    I’m still picking Hone to cross the floor on a GST raise with his personal deal breaker being the foreshore and seabed issue not being resolved to his satisfaction. He is the only one, due to the white mofo comments being resolved by his Taitokerau electorate, to have a clear mandate to proceed his course and he doesnt give a shit what the rest of NZ thinks and i’d wager what the rest of his party thinks either.

    • r0b 10.1

      Shouldn’t the maori party be going back to their electorates and constituents for a mandate on whether to support raising GST rather than outright toeing the nats party line ?

      Damn right they should, they’ve done it on enough other issues.

      I’m still picking Hone to cross the floor on a GST raise with his personal deal breaker being the foreshore and seabed issue not being resolved to his satisfaction

      But GST is up first. The Nats will keep spinning F&S out as long as possible, to keep the MP in line and swallowing rats as long as possible…

      • pollywog 10.1.1

        …and if Hone does cross the floor on a conscience vote re GST i doubt Turia and Sharples would/could turf him out.

        I pretty much reckon Hone can do whatever the fuck he likes now and, as has been shown, Maori party leadership won’t do anything for fear of getting a tongue lashing by their pakeha overlord and a grass roots backlash that’ll see them lose the privilege of governance.

        How it must irk long time Maori labour supporters to know that a vote for the Maori party was in essence a vote for National.

        • r0b

          I pretty much reckon Hone can do whatever the fuck he likes now and, as has been shown, Maori party leadership won’t do anything for fear of getting a tongue lashing by their pakeha overlord and a grass roots backlash that’ll see them lose the privilege of governance.

          Can’t tell you how disappointed I am in the MP leadership. Turia Ok I didn’t have high hopes for, but Sharples, I expected so much more than this.

          How it must irk long time Maori labour supporters to know that a vote for the Maori party was in essence a vote for National.

          Hope they vote with their feet in 2011.

          • pollywog

            Bro, try being polynesian (exclusive of Maori). Seems theres not even any leaders worth mentioning or enough things being said to even be disappointed with.

            They might be happy every now and again trucking along with their overlords wearing island shirts and getting the odd photo op with has been sports stars but i’m not. Whats it gonna take to light a fire under their collective asses?

            I mean what has Winnie Laban ever said about anything important lately that’s worth quoting ?

            as for the Su’a Sio
            …he aint sayin nuthin slick to an oilcan, least of all a coconut oil can.

            and Ms Sepuloni…”Pacific people have a message for the Minister: she needs to listen to Pacific communities, and she needs to take action to curb unemployment.’
            yeah fair enough or what ?

            I’m all for humility and shit but not at the expense of being so humble as to be invisible.

            Bring back Mark Gosche i say so Sam Lotu Liga can fuck right off.

            • r0b

              I doubt if a Polynesian party would be a goer in the short term. Which means the realistic option is galvanising the large Polynesian contingent within Labour. It wouldn’t take many, with passion like yours, to bring it off…

              • pollywog

                A polynesian party wouldn’t even be a goer in the long term while Maori continue to pursue their own partisan agenda.

                Maybe after all treaty claims have been settled and they unite as one, rather than a confederation of independent nations, they’ll come back into the fold.

                And i’m not quite ready to galvanise a passive aggressive peoples who’s elders values are firmly rooted in the church and whose youngers are rooted in hiphop.

                But thats OK. I still got a bit of time on my side. One thing polynesians in general don’t lack is patience. It comes from viewing ourselves as the newest link in a chain of consciousness, linking us to the past through our ancestors and our future through our progeny.

                We aren’t defined by the sum of experience in our own lifetimes but the collective achievements of us as a peoples over generations.

              • @ pollywog 1.49pm

                It’s partisan because maori are the indigenous people of this land – when the indigenous rights of maori are recognised, accepted and celebrated then EVERYONE will be better off, including all our brothers and sisters from all lands who have come to live, love and die on this waka – but it is a waka not a rowboat.

              • pollywog

                ‘when the indigenous rights of maori are recognised, accepted and celebrated then EVERYONE will be better off’

                but Marty, your ancestors signed over a lot of those rights so i guess you’ll be waiting a bloody long time.

                in the mean time, could you please remind me what those rights are again and how better off i’ll be ?

              • time is an illusion

                and thanks for the invitation but i decline – much more satisfying to ‘remind’ yourself 🙂

  11. Paul 11

    Quite surprising to me at least was the news this week that petroleum products are NZ’s 3rd or 4th largest export. It was discussed, a little, today on Q&A. What isn’t clear is who is making the money from this. Does anyone actually have any idea? I think if it was a Kiwi they would have been knighted by now (and probably overseas) but the lack of noise about this makes me feel suspicious and may be a salient point when thinking about mining the conservation estate.

  12. Rob 12

    Those Entrepreneurial Men and their Milking Machines. More propaganda from the Herald. Seems we’re about to lift off to the next level of the English/Key Milk Powder Inferno.
    Funny she didn’t mention the poisoning of Southland’s rivers.


    “John Key and Bill English were all smiles as they rolled up for the opening of the world’s largest milk powder drier in Southland yesterday.

    It was a great day to be out of the office. The sun was shining. It does that quite a bit down here, contrary to the belief of many Aucklanders.

    Hundreds of dairy farmers also turned out to celebrate the latest addition to Fonterra’s impressive Edendale plant. Many of them had gone into serious hock to fund dairy conversions and expansions during the heady “white gold” boom.

    They tasted financial pain when global commodity prices collapsed. But the price for whole milk powder is now recovering.

    . . .
    But Key and English come from different schools. Key is a businessman, like his colleague Steven Joyce, who is rapidly stepping into Murray McCully’s old role as the Cabinet strategist. Their business careers were built on an appetite for risk – not risk-aversion.

    In many respects Key now has to start behaving like the country’s Treasury – championing economic opportunities for New Zealand and setting aspiration levels high so that chief executives and entrepreneurs will have the confidence to expand and grow their businesses.

    English comes from a different school. A former Treasury official, he is highly conscious of the Government’s bottom-line and the potential for the structural fiscal deficits to be exacerbated.
    . . .

    Talking to farmers and other Fonterra stakeholders in Southland yesterday, I got a sense they wanted to see the economy lift to the next level.

    There were some grumbles around the proposed GST increase which will push up on-farm costs. But they “get” the story that it is Fonterra’s success on the international scene.

    This mindset must be replicated through all sorts of businesses – small and large – if we are ever to catch up with Australia. The Kiwi spirit on display in Southland inspired my confidence (at least) that this can be done.

    Disclosure: Fran O’Sullivan was a guest of Fonterra during a week-long media tour of its prime New Zealand facilities.”

    • the sprout 12.1

      and such cutting edge, out-of-the-box visionary leadership – revolutionize the economy and inspire us all by pinning our hopes on… dairy farming.

  13. outofbed 13

    I have limited vocab and my posts are normally short but then again I am only 13
    I guess then, this could be goodbye

  14. outofbed 14

    I can only read the short comments

  15. outofbed 15


  16. prism 16

    Short comments of opinions can be lacking in explanation, anecdote, reference to factual evidence etc.
    Making quick, short comments on other quick, short comments lacks integrity for reliance on that exchange and doesn’t help to get the reasoned and rounded view of the situation.
    The difficult problems facing our century can’t be coped with effectively on the information, or lack of it, in sound bites.

  17. Anne 17

    I’m with sprout @ 10.34am.
    The short, sharp volleys are fun as outofbed and sprout have just shown.
    Can’t you just moderate the tedious “teen” without affecting other commentaters? He is off-putting though. Something has got to be done.

  18. logie97 18

    Brilliant – the Teen has won!
    @Kiwiteen123 10:31.
    Comments on this blog site have become somewhat preoccupied with discussing problems caused by one commenter who I note now appears to be leaving, having achieved this angst. – can almost hear him scurrying off down into the garden shouting nah, nah, nah, nah. He will probably monitor this site constantly throughout the promised weeks absence to see how many mentions he gets. And Tumeke must be quaking in their boots…

    • Draco T Bastard 19.1

      Well, the first has nothing to do with the justice system but about some TV producer getting some facts wrong. The action by the complainant seems reasonable despite him being in prison.

      The second is a concern as it seems the police made a decision on who was guilty and then did their best to find evidence to prove that. Again, though, not the justice system as a whole but a part of it that our governments seem inclined to give even more power and less accountability.

      The third is about the rules as they were and not as they are. Things like this will decrease over time.

      And the suggested removal of rights is what we expect from Family First and the other two organisations.

      • gitmo 19.1.1


        So you think that

        Legal aid should be pissed up against the wall so Burton can continue with his self idolisation ?

        Re the third – one would hope so but I suspect that this disgrace along with the debacle down in CCH will continue to occur.

        As for the last link I know many here detest Family First and the SST but in this instance I applaud them for bringing this case back into the public’s eye.

        • Draco T Bastard

          The article doesn’t say anything about legal aid and even if it was there’s one point about the representation within the law – it needs to be available to everyone even the criminals. Unfortunately it’s not available to the vast majority of people – the people who haven’t committed a crime and just can’t afford a lawyer. I really don’t have a problem with convicted criminals having access to a lawyer. I DO think this is just the MSM making a mountain out of a molehill (it’s really not a major issue, errors do occur in research and they get corrected). if THEY had kept their mouths shut then Burton wouldn’t be back in the news getting the attention that he seems to desire.

          The Kahui case is an example of the Double Jeopardy rule being really stupid but that doesn’t mean that others rights need to be over ruled merely that that one rule needs to be looked at. Police are still looking into the case so it didn’t need the reward and I’m reasonably sure that the reward won’t achieve anything any way. When a family closes up money doesn’t change their mind.

  19. prism 20

    Heard Jeanette Fitzsimons this am on Chris Laidlaw. With what she was saying in mind – this is interesting and though from 14/12/09, its new to me so I’m passing it on.

    George Monbiot in the Guardian on our future – the theme
    being a battle between expanders and restrainers.

    “The angry men know that this golden age has gone; but they cannot find the words for the constraints they hate. Clutching their copies of Atlas Shrugged, they flail around, accusing those who would impede them of communism, fascism, religiosity, misanthropy, but knowing at heart that these restrictions are driven by something far more repulsive to the unrestrained man: the decencies we owe to other human beings.

    Humanity is no longer split between conservatives and liberals, reactionaries and progressives, though both sides are informed by the older politics. Today the battle lines are drawn between expanders and restrainers; those who believe that there should be no impediments and those who believe that we must live within limits. The vicious battles we have seen so far between greens and climate change deniers, road safety campaigners and speed freaks, real grassroots groups and corporate-sponsored astroturfers are just the beginning. This war will become much uglier as people kick against the limits that decency demands.

    Comment on it from this site –
    Desticorp.20 Where leaders in travel and tourism come to think.
    Tuesday, December 15, 2009
    In Response to George Monbiot –
    The New Dividing Line
    On Dec 14th George Monbiot wrote a cutting but insightful piece on the new politics. While he has titled the post “It’s About All of Us’, the content ends up focusing on “them” and “us”. It was reproduced in the Guardian under a more militaristic heading: This is bigger than climate change. It is a battle to redefine humanity.
    “I wish I could write as eloquently as Monbiot he can be convincing, except that there’s flaw in his thinking that comes from a flaw of perception. There are colours in our world. He has identified two modes of thought but not seen the connections that link and unify. …
    If humanity needs anything right now it’s to develop a universal capacity to grasp and feel comfortable with complexity, ambiguity even paradox. It’s the ability to say “yes and’ not just “yes but’. But in the same way our psychology has difficulty handling gradual threats and responds best to immediate danger, the media we have created (and especially the new, digital social media) values the brief, the new, the instant, the “real-time’.
    Our thought processes are constantly interrupted, distracted and divided and our capacity to mull over an idea or article is reduced. Never was there such a need for our leaders to take time out to think (God forbid) but, when they do, we describe them as indecisive. “

  20. BLiP 21

    A couple of broken windows and the odd splash of paint and – hey presto – “Violence Flares In Vancouver”. Fucking lap-dog media.

    There’s sufficient reason for a similar uprising in Aotearoa with the World Cup, if you ask me.

    • the sprout 21.1

      right with you on that one.

      i’ve been toying with some t-shirt slogan for the event, like:

      Not with My Tax dollars, Fuck-off with your RWC

      how does that sound, catchy?

      • outofbed 21.1.1

        How about
        Fuck the cup

        • the sprout

          i like it.

          it’s more to the point than my other ones:

          Jam the Cup in your redneck arse, it’s not my national game and I’m not paying for it

          I despise rugby and its fans even more than John Banks

          • outofbed

            Judging by the money being spent on Eden Park I thought John Banks Liked Rugby 🙂

          • Quoth the Raven

            Jam the Cup in your redneck arse, it’s not my national game and I’m not paying for it

            I despise rugby and its fans even more than John Banks

            Whilst I do hate my tax dollar being wasted on the Rugby World Cup and I personally am not a fan of the game this for me does not translate to despising rugby fans nor making generalisations about them being rednecks. It is after all just a game.

            • gitmo

              I dunno, I’d quite like to see the clip of sprout wearing that siort into one of the rugby grounds and being carried out on a stretcher with his head inserted up his cakker

            • the sprout

              if only it were just a game and were treated as such, i’d be perfectly happy.
              to be fair i have no problem with the game itself – it is after all just a game. it’s actually just all the other shit that goes with corporatized sport, the majority of which is the RWC, that i hate.
              and while it is wrong to say all rugby fans are rednecks, because obviously they’re not, what i meant to say is i hate the redneckery that rugby culture often seems to licence, that i despise.

  21. Quoth the Raven 22

    So state law in South Carolina requires all organizations who “directly or indirectly advocate, advise, teach or practice the duty or necessity of controlling, seizing, or overthrowing the government of the United States, the state of South Carolina, or any political division thereof,” to register their activities with the South Carolina Secretary of State. So Johnson writes a letter to register and it’s a brilliant read.

  22. Jenny 23

    I have to vote no.

    The reasons:

    In comments where the poster has posed a question, (or asked for a vote) a one word reply, Yes or No will often suffice. Compulsorily having to reply with a more fuller response would be forced and unnatural, and a barrier to open honest conversation.

    In the more conversational style that comment threads often take, (if they are working correctly), the original poster may want to comment to short questions at some length, while his questioner or, the person he is corresponding with could be making very short queries, or responses on their side of the conversation.

    In my opinion;

    To artificially restrict this back and forward, flow, will be stultifying to genuine debate.

    Conciously obnoxious and annoying commenters eventually remove themselves, either by going to far (and being banned) or getting tired or bored and just leaving. To go to sites that more reflect their views.

    I notice we haven’t heard from Bigbruv much lately, and as far as I know he wasn’t banned.

    And even Kiwiteen will eventually have to give up when he turns 20. (In 6 years time).

    There can be little doubt that these sorts of people do raise questions that have to be countered if not here, either wider society or some other blog.

    The worry for me is that The Standard could risk becoming homogenised, and too safe to reflect all views. The Standard claims it is tolerant of differing views, and any moderation of this policy is a major step.

    [lprent: As far as I can tell bigbruv has never been banned. I did a scan of the comments at one stage to find out. ]

  23. Draco T Bastard 24

    Ecoshock interview with Tim Garrett. Tim Garrett has postulated the theory that we’ve already gone too far in regards to AGW. About 15 minutes in he says that he’s run some numbers and that, if he uses some extreme conditions, he can get CO2 in the atmosphere down to maybe 400ppm. Trying to maintain any sort of GDP growth, which is what all governments around the world are trying for, will only lead to catastrophe coming faster.

    [audio src="http://www.ecoshock.net/eshock10/ES_100205_Show.mp3" /]
    [audio src="http://www.ecoshock.net/eshock10/ES_100205_Show_LoFi.mp3" /]

  24. prism 25

    Looked up the Santa Fe Institute think pool, bigger than a tank!

    Interesting item about Samuel Bowles economist involved with the Inst.
    Quote –
    By Cory Doctorow at 10:45 PM February 5, 2010
    Here’s a fascinating profile on radical Santa Fe Institute economist Samuel Bowles, an empiricist who says his research doesn’t support the Chicago School efficient marketplace hypothesis. Instead, Bowles argues that the wealth inequality created by strict market economics creates inefficiencies because society has to devote so much effort to stopping the poor from expropriating the rich. He calls this “guard labor” and says that one in four Americans is employed to [do this] in the sector — labor that could otherwise be used to increase the nation’s wealth and progress.

  25. Olwyn 26

    The new-look Standard appeared like magic just as i was posting a comment. It looks great! brilliant!

  26. It will take a little getting used to but I too wish to congratulate you on the upgraded website – looks and feels very nice indeed.

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