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Open mike 14/10/2010

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 14th, 2010 - 33 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…

33 comments on “Open mike 14/10/2010 ”

  1. ron 1

    Penny Hulse is Deputy Mayor of Auckland
    They’ll come after her – hard.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/local-government/news/article.cfm?c_id=250&objectid=10680238

  2. Tiger Mountain 2

    Tom Scott on “Stuff” has produced two jingoistic works now re the “Hobbit” production criticising Actors Equity, the latest narrowed to just Auckland actors. The film industry has long operated on fear loathing and sycophancy, which is one reason apart from being in NZ, a precarious industry, that there are so many splits among people in what is a collaborative work process. The whole scene will continue to be chaotic and exploitative until people unite behind Equity rather than try and isolate it.

  3. prism 3

    Brian Russell and his bio-harness developed first in his garage in Papakura. Clever NZ developing stuff in his shed! Being used in Chile in the mine rescue. NASA and Chilean government approached him for help. He seems to be in business sited in the USA.

    First we should be proud and make another chalk mark for ourselves, it’s important to cherish our clever successes. We’ve a small population and are too easily overwhelmed by see-sawing opinions by politicians, farmers and elite. On the up they crow about these successes, then want take the line that they will constantly arise without any government assistance, then on the down they talk us down and blame problems on productivity and laziness also has been quoted in the past, and reinforce the notion of our subservience to primary industry, farming and extraction.

    Second we should be looking to see how we can aid such ventures to remain in NZ. The onset of the internet was supposed to make this easier. Leadership from the government on these lines would be helpful but so often we hear them say weasel words put-downs with a sneer – that governments are no good at picking winners. But they can encourage a fertile climate for winners to develop in!

    The latest negativity is that government wants to leave the market to decide on the shape of our port system. How simplistic. One port was left in the lurch when Fonterra decided to realign their coastal interface to another port and different freight company. The market can be very wasteful of externalities, and in this case a port was the externality to be abandoned without cost to the major user. The port lost out on much of its freight throughput and therefore its economies of scale and income on which its plans and spending had been based. Government should be gathering information and projections and make a strategic plan with a number of scenarios that they will then discuss with all the ports.

    Interesting that Christchurch DHB is short of money for its services, and yet is allowing its neurosurgeons to grab all the business from the south by not wishing to work alongside a smaller Dunedin service. Is that free market at work, or building a fiefdom in Christchurch with convenient travel mostly within Christchurch for the neurosurgeons? Or is Christchurch trying to grab funding that would otherwise have gone to support Dunedin neurosurgery?
    And where is the Government direction ensuring the best use of its health money for the benefit of the Deep South population?

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      You’d think English would be fighting harder for health services for his constituents in Clutha Southland.

    • KJT 3.2

      The ports are a prime example of the inefficiency of trying to get competition between natural monopolies.
      Instead we get Auckland and Tauranga buying Northland so it cannot grow and challenge them.
      Corporatism, with Lyttelton and Auckland, The two most inefficient ports with rapidly multiplying managers who can’t even co-ordinate between themselves. A more efficient port, Timaru, loses trade to Lyttelton. Duplication of facilities as they try and get business from other ports. Opposition to improving transport links to NZ’s only natural deepwater port in case it takes business away. Opposition to feeder services including obstructive scheduling. Practices such as compulsory pilotage for local ships to help make port company books look better.

      I could go on but getting too angry.

    • nzfp 3.3

      First we should be proud and make another chalk mark for ourselves, it’s important to cherish our clever successes.

      This is a very important point, because “Brian Russell” is a product of the New Zealand social system which includes New Zealand Infrastructure – human infrastructure in this case – such as education, health, welfare and so on…

      Any cuts to our social infrastructure will only lessen the number of “Brian Russells” we produce.

  4. Carol 4

    Whoa! Just listened to Randall Lane, featured guest on Nine-to-Noon. Check it out when it goes online:
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/20101014

    The Nat Rad blurb says:

    10:05 Randall Lane – journalist and magazine entrepreneur

    Randall Lane, the former Forbes writer co-founded a magazine company Doubledown Media which launched magazines aimed at traders and the Wall Street elite and gave him a box seat of the goings-on of the rich and powerful. In his book The Zeroes: My Misadventures in the decade Wall Street Went Insane, he describes how his magazines all fed off – and encouraged – the Wall Street greed-fest before the company went belly-up in the financial crisis. Mr Lane is currently the editor-at-large of the The Daily Beast website.
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/

    The Zeroes: My Misadventures in the decade Wall Street Went Insane by Randall Lane
    Published by Scribe.

    Confirms everything that I had already learned about the greed and excess of the finance trader boom & bubble. Lane describes how derivative traders creamed off the wealth from working people, and mostly kept it. He also describes the disbelief, or refusal to believe, amongst traders when the bubble collapsed in 2008. They made fortunes gambling on financial futures, but were unable to predict the collapse of the system – blinded by their beliefs & greed, and distanced from the sufferings it caused to average working people.

  5. Interesting 5

    So, My vote is up for grabs at this stage….

    i am having trouble finding policies for either party so i can look at them to decide.

    I know that policies are often not really available until closer to the election. But does anyone know where i can find Labour Party Policies to look at?

    I have looked on their website but could not find any. Are they still working on them? are they releasing them soon?

    any help would be appreciated.

    I did email Labour party contact from website a few weeks ago, but i havent heard anything back yet.

    • Carol 5.1

      Parties, especially opposition parties, don’t usually publish their policies til closer to the election.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.2

      Either party?

      http://www.elections.org.nz/elections/registers/registered-political-parties.html#gen0

      There’s a few more than two.

      And I believe that Labour are still working on their policies. Discussions only started a couple of weeks ago according to Red Alert.

    • BLiP 5.3

      Guess what? There’s more than two parties and the Greens have the best policy of the lot. For real. Check it out, contrast and compare, help save the planet because – its not about the grand in the bank, its about the grand children.

      http://www.greens.org.nz/policy

      • nzfp 5.3.1

        Hey BLiP,
        With all due respect, I beg to differ – contrast and compare, Green Party vs NZ Democrats for Social Credit:

        Green Monetary Policy

        * Better coordination of monetary and fiscal policy.
        * A review of the conduct of monetary policy in light of the likely increased frequency of resource shortage driven price shocks.
        * Measures to limit future asset (especially house) price inflation.
        * Consideration of a more actively managed exchange rate through measures designed to reduce the attractiveness and profitability of currency speculation.

        NZ Democrats for Social Credit Monetary Policy

        • Make the Reserve Bank the sole provider of new money.
        • Abolish GST and replace it with a Financial Transactions Tax which would mean the currency speculating “financial sharks” would pay their fair share of tax.
        • Make the Reserve Bank responsible for seeing that foreign debt is repaid, and overseas transactions are in balance.
        • Establish a social credit economy where people will be able to use the country’s resources without mortgaging their own or their children’s future.
        • Replace local body and D.H.B. debt with interest-free community credit.
        • Recover effective control of New Zealand’s economic affairs and establish greater political independence.
        • Ensure a property-owning democracy, in which the ownership of assets is spread as widely as possible amongst individuals.

        How is the Green Party going to achieve any environmental reforms without changing the structure of the economy which promotes environmental destruction?

        • BLiP 5.3.1.1

          Very, very good point. Given that money exists only in our imagination these days, I can see no reason why it shouldn’t be New Zealand that has the ability to “create” it. I’m a bit of a “late bloomer” when it comes to politics and have to concede that I never really “got” the Social Credit line. Hmmmmm . . . .

          • Colonial Viper 5.3.1.1.1

            Someone a day or two ago posted a link to a relevant video BLiP “The Secret of Oz”, I think you may find it interesting:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D22TlYA8F2E

            A starting point for understanding would be something like this – when you take out a mortgage to buy a house, the bank credits your bank account with say $300K which you can pass on to the owner of the house you are buying.

            But the bank does not need to have that $300K in its vaults in order to lend it to you. How can this be???

            All the bank does is create a credit entry in your bank account for $250K, while noting that you now owe it $250K.

            In other words, the bank creates this so-called ‘bank money’ out of nothing and accompanies the money creation with an interest bearing debt that you now have to pay off. (This explains why banks in recent years have been so keen to sell everyone debt, lots and lots of debt).

            Can this really happen? You betcha.The following explains a little bit more.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fractional-reserve_banking

            All the social credit guys are saying is – if you are going to create money out of thin air, why don’t you do it in such a way where interest bearing bank debt is not created with it. It would be cash on which interest is owed to no one and to no party.

            And the authority who would emit this money? The sovereign government of the land, not the private banks.

            And how would you prevent out of control inflation? By carefully controlling the quantity of the interest free money created so that it would well lubricate trade within the economy, and withdrawing amounts of it out of circulation if required for the good of the people if inflationary effects were becoming undesirable e.g. via taxation or enforced savings schemes.

            • BLiP 5.3.1.1.1.1

              Thanks CV . . . will check out the video. This is a great concept but so many forces rallied against it . . .

  6. john 6

    More news from the NeoLiberal disaster zone of America.the Wall Street party continues with 144 BILLION

  7. john 7

    Wodney and Shonkey’s pet ideology continues to wreak havoc on American society and economy: NeoLiberalism The rich get richer the poor get poorer. Main Street drowns in debt: Wall Street swims in money.Income inequality in US is at India proportions,that’s the failed rubbish garbage ideology the Wodney/John party want to continue with!
    http://geraldcelentechannel.blogspot.com/
    Refer “The sell-off of America” If ever a revolution was required this hapless,unhappy land needs one!

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      They’ll get one. Not sure when but it really can’t be too far away. Eventually being at the bottom of the pile will become so bad that they will have to do something other than listen to the very very rich.

  8. Pascal's bookie 8

    For them what are following the unfolding mortgage drama stateside:

    http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2010/10/13/the-enormous-mortgage-bond-scandal/

    Another day, another wrinkle.

      • Pascal's bookie 8.1.1

        Today’s :

        http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101013/ap_on_bi_ge/us_jpmorgan_mortgages

        JPMorgan Chase is expanding its review of foreclosures to 41 states as pressure builds on banks to answer allegations of document fraud.
        The bank is now reviewing about 115,000 foreclosure cases, up from 56,000, Douglas Braunstein, chief financial officer for JPMorgan Chase & Co., said Wednesday. JPMorgan had stopped proceedings in the 23 states that require judicial review of foreclosures and now is looking into similar deals in states where there “could possibly be an issue,” spokesman Joseph Evangelisti said.

        So let’s be conservative as all hell and assume an average mortgage of 100k, (it’ll be probably higher seeing these are mortgages they have already foreclosed on) that’s something over ten billion dollars worth of dodgy mortgages that are suspect in one bank. And within that bank those are only the ones they have already foreclosed on, there will be many many more that are delinquent and many times that number again that are still being serviced.

        Bank officials also said JPMorgan had previously stopped using the banking industry’s controversial electronic mortgage tracking system for foreclosures in 2007 and 2008. The bank still uses the system, known as MERS, for other loan purposes.
        Lawyers in class-action lawsuits have argued that MERS — which allowed financial institutions to do away with paperwork in favor of electronic tracking — lacks the required paper trail to prove mortgage ownership.

        Can’t prove mortgage ownership you say? I imagine that’s not good. Probably shouldn’t have let that happen guys.

        The news of an expanded probe came just as officials in 50 states and the District of Columbia announced a joint investigation into allegations that mortgage companies used illegal methods in dealing with foreclosure documents that were used to evict people from their homes. The probe will examine whether mortgage company employees made false statements and whether they prepared foreclosure paperwork in a fraudulent manner.

        So when banks couldn’t prove mortgage ownership, or couldn’t find the note, they just went ahead and falsified it so that they could foreclose anyway? They just up and decided off their own bat that the rule of law as it pertains to property ownership law doesn’t count for shit? Oh my. What would Rand say?

        The foreclosure mess has escalated in the last month. Ally Financial’s GMAC Mortgage has stopped foreclosure proceedings in the 23 states where courts weigh in on home seizures. Bank of America has now frozen foreclosures in 50 states. Litton Loan Servicing, Goldman Sachs’ mortgage service unit, has halted some questionable foreclosures.

        Well isn’t that swell of them. Holding off on foreclosing until they can work out if they have a legal right to do so. Well, now that they’ve been busted it would probably make sense to do this. Especially considering the fact that both the householders and the people the banks sold the mortgage bonds to will be lawyering up like nobody’s business.

        Lawmakers have called for an all-out national foreclosure moratorium. What’s at stake is the nation’s entire foreclosure machinery. If it is indeed brought to a standstill, it could further damage an already struggling housing market as well as deal a blow to a frail economic recovery.

        hahaha talk about your whistling passed the graveyard.

        “could further damage an already struggling housing market”

        Good lord. This shit could destroy the property market. No one can prove who owes what to whom on a large percentage of housing deals made over the last ten years. The paperwork got discombobulated.

        Big swinging dicks using cheatcodes to play Grand Theft Wall st done crashed the game for everyone. The mods need to step in and start swinging the banhammer.

      • Pascal's bookie 8.1.2

        In moderation. Seems to happen when I edit a comment.

  9. freedom 9

    Mr Key, barely finished pissing on Len Brown’s victory has decided to needle the new Welllington Mayor in an oh so subtle way

  10. Carol 10

    There’s saturation international media coverage of the Chilean miners and their stamina and fortitude under extreme stress, plus the effort to save them. It is indeed a major feel-good story that should be covered. But I would like to see more background info in the MSM on mining, mine workers in socialist Chile, and how it compares with mining in other countries. My main knowledge of mining comes from the mining strike in Thatcher’s Britain, when she decimated the industry and unions.

    And I have major concerns about mining fossil fuels these days. But to me it seems like revisiting a lost era in much of the western/anglo world, when mining coal was a key industry.

    • rosy 10.1

      It’s an awsome rescue it’s had me hooked. But the fall-out from this will see the mining company and regulators as serious losers – moreso than if miners were never found, I expect. That’s going to be the real story, I hope the MSM pick up on that side of it.

      The Guardian has some pretty good links.

    • KJT 10.2

      http://www.newstatesman.com/south-america/2010/10/pilger-chile-pinochet-mapuche

      “But the cameras were blind to the plundering, abuse of indigenous people and history of disappearances that have poisoned the country”.

      • Carol 10.2.1

        Thanks, KJT. That was informative and depressing. So it seems to be privatised copper mining under an oppressive regime that is supported by Obama’s neoliberal US as a buffer against or site of resistance to the more independent South American countries. And while the cameras focus on the miners Mapuche hunger strikers (for the freedom of their colonised, repressed and displaced people) remain largely invisible.

        Yes, rosy, the Guardian can be a useful source too. I’ll look at it.

  11. The Right’s failed Mayors to get plum jobs.

    Despite missing out on the mayoralty – Banks lands a cushy number as the executive chairman of Huiljich Wealth Management – despite having little financial sector experience.

    And Key has Prendergast lined up for a plum job somewhere in the public service.

    I’m not denying they will have good skills, and would be headhunted – but just because the public trough is going to be removed it doesn’t mean they need access to the private one immediately – maybe a lean spell will do the porkers well.

    I mean, the voters just rejected these people. Or should I not be surprised that the rats crawled back into the darkness from whereth they came?

  12. Draco T Bastard 12

    Law Commission to review gaps around ‘new media’

    “It’s a bit of a Wild West out there in cyberspace at the moment, because bloggers and online publishers are not subject to any form of regulation or professional or ethical standards.

    From what I’ve seen, the MSM isn’t exactly being held to account either.

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