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Open Mike 15/05/2018

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 15th, 2018 - 238 comments
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238 comments on “Open Mike 15/05/2018”

  1. Ed 1

    The massacre of Palestians by the Israeli state.
    Why won’t the media use the massacre word?
    Craig Murray looks at the British media’s partisan support for the Israelis.

    We could say the same for the NZ media.
    All shied away from saying massacre.
    Shame on the media.

    ‘On the day the Israeli Defence Force massacred dozens of unarmed Palestinians in Gaza and maimed over 400 more, our media has carefully avoided the use of the word massacre. Here is a Google search of News I did five minutes ago on the word “massacre”

    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/05/when-is-a-massacre-not-a-massacre/

    ‘A massacre occurred today in which more people were killed than at Glencoe. All of them were unarmed and the majority were well over a hundred yards from the border fence. It says everything about the kind of nightmare fascist state Israel now is, that if you look through those news results for “massacre”, the only mention you get of Palestinians is a claim by the Israeli Defence Force that the Palestinian Defence Forces were planning a massacre of Israelis.

    The Turkish government have now come out with a statement condemning the massacre, and in the UK the Daily Express and the Daily Star have both reported that; but both have chosen to put the word “massacre” in the Turkish statement into inverted commas, as though it were not true.

    The Western media far prefers the word “clashes” to “massacre”. Because those terrible Palestinians insist upon demonstrating against the continuing theft of all their land and resources, and keep attacking innocent Israeli bullets with their heads and bodies. If you look through the Google search of News this time for “clashes”, you discover that the western and Israeli media peculiarly have precisely the same preference for this entirely inappropriate word. That, again, is fascinating.’

    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/05/when-is-a-massacre-not-a-massacre/

    • Ed 1.1

      Radio New Zealand has spent more time discussing the opening of the Jerusalem Embassy than the massacre of 52 civilians.
      TVNZ calls it a violent protest.

      I won’t click on the Herald. No doubt it has completely ignored the event.

      The media is scum.

      • Pete 1.1.1

        My first look at the Herald saw the important stuff at the top – a royal wedding.

      • Adrian Thornton 1.1.2

        +1 Finkelstein: Where’s the Solidarity for Gaza?

        ‘Norman Finkelstein says that while Palestinian protesters in Gaza have bravely resisted their ghettoization under merciless Israeli fire, international solidarity is falling short’

    • james 1.3

      “‘A massacre occurred today in which more people were killed than at Glencoe. All of them were unarmed and the majority were well over a hundred yards from the border fence.”

      I would suggest that Craig Murray is a liar.

      There are reports that some were armed.

      • Barfly 1.3.1

        Rocks versus tanks – yeah right

        • james 1.3.1.1

          “The IDF also says it foiled an attack by three armed Palestinians near Rafah, close to the border with Egypt, during “a particularly violent demonstration.”

          – CNN.

          https://edition.cnn.com/2018/05/14/middleeast/gaza-protests-intl/index.html

          Again – saying that they were all unarmed is simply telling lies.

          • Adrian Thornton 1.3.1.1.1

            There are cell phones and cameras all over this massacre show us some links to support your statements.

            • james 1.3.1.1.1.1

              I just did – look up and see the blue line that starts with https://

              I quoted the relevant part and gave a link.

              • Adrian Thornton

                James..come on get serious, the link you provided is a quote from the IDF, that is not evidence, as I have already asked you twice, please provide suitable independent links to back up your claims , or please take back your statement.

            • reason 1.3.1.1.1.2

              James is just sticking to the script and its talking points …

              He Delivered it With a bit of character assassination as well

              I think James may have also been the first here at TS to introduce the ‘Corbyn is a antisemitic’ smear / attack

              Much of the script used by those to hide the crimes of Israel is revealed and explained in this excellent doco

        • james 1.3.1.2

          Rocks versus tanks – yeah right

          Getting hit with stones from a slingshot can be deadly also.

          • Adrian Thornton 1.3.1.2.1

            Are you fucking serious, show us a link to one Israeli IDF or civilian whio even has been scratched during the past month.

            You defend the undefendable.

            • james 1.3.1.2.1.1

              Im not defending them – I was pointing out that the line that they had no weapons was a lie.

              • Adrian Thornton

                So are you seriously saying that Palestinian protesters who throw stones with slingshots at entrenched IDF snipers who are at least 50-100 meters away behind two spaced fences are “armed”…you must be fucking crazy.

                The IDF snipers are armed with The Remington M24’s with an effective and super accurate kill range of 800+ meters.
                https://www.americanrifleman.org/articles/2016/3/24/the-remington-m24-sniper-weapon-system/

                A sling shot has an accurate range of less than 25 meters
                http://www.slingshotcommunity.com/threads/hunting-distances-for-the-slingshot.152/

                You are defending them.
                Stop with the false equivalence, there is none whatsoever.

                • james

                  Did you not read the link. Obviously no – else you wouldn’t be making stupid comments.

                  It clearly said some of them were armed.

                  If you that is assuming it was with a slingshot.

                  • Adrian Thornton

                    As I said to you already, show us a video, or independant media link showing these armed protesters…I haven’t seen any….if you only have the word of the IDF via CNN then I say you have nothing…
                    But prove me wrong.

                    Put up or shut up.

                  • adam

                    Prove your point james, you said that people who said the protesters were not armed were lying. Again show us some pictures of weapons.

                    Not some fanciful notion of a slingshot. Because I’m going to go out on a limb, and say you have fired a assault rifle, or a high caliber rifle. As such, you know that comparing it to a slingshot is just childish, and not a little dienguious. It is apples and oranges.

                    Let’s not forget that Israel has complete aerial domination, coupled with complete technological domination. Again, your slingshot argument is looking weak, and actually, quite stupid. Next you going to say they shot themselves, that would be the next illogical step.

                    • Nik

                      Apples and oranges? More like pineapples and raisins.

                    • james

                      “Again, your slingshot argument is looking weak, and actually, quite stupid”

                      No firing slings at the Israelis and then rushing the fence with cutters etc would be stupid – esp knowing that they would be shot.

                      They didnt shoot themselves – but they really did put themselves in harms way.

          • alwyn 1.3.1.2.2

            Well, it certainly worked for someone named David in that area of the world a few years ago.
            I’m not at all sure I would try it though. The IDF are a great deal rougher than were the Philistines.

            • Stuart Munro 1.3.1.2.2.1

              A slingshot is not a sling.

              But you’re on the right track – the IDF are more Philistine than the Philistines.

        • Ed 1.3.1.3

          Galloway nails it.

    • Bearded Git 1.4

      Israel shooting Palestinians in the Concentration Camp that is Gaza like fish in a barrel.

      It’s time the two-state solution was officially pronounced dead. This way Israel would include Gaza and the West Bank with all citizens having the same rights including freedom of movement.

      • Barfly 1.4.1

        Israel was founded on ethnic cleansing, atrocities and wholesale theft of Palestinians land and property. Israel has fought multiple wars of aggression for “Lebensraum”, they are one of the most prolific offenders in the exercise of state sanctioned extra-judicial murder. I believe it will likely be a cold day in hell before Palestinians are accorded equal rights in the Zionist state.

      • Venezia 1.4.2

        Bearded Git. I agree. I was out till late last night and ended up watching Al Jazeera coverage of the opening of the new US embassy on a split screen, with the killing fields over the Gaza border fence on the other half. The contradictions of world views, Land grabbing, Trumpism, Christian Zionism and genocide was clear to see. Horrific. Absolutely disgusting. NZ needs to distance us from this ethnic cleansing and get out from under the US hegemonic umbrella. As I edit, Jacinda has made a very diplomatic statement on midday news. Bridges of course supports USA.

    • Cinny 1.5

      Appears to me that it was an all out slaughter, I’d consider it to be a war crime or simply straight out murder.

      Absolutely heinous behaviour by bibi and his henchmen.

      “At least 58 Palestinians were killed on Monday in Gaza and more than 2,700 others wounded as the Israeli army fired live ammunition, tear gas and firebombs at protesters assembled along several points near the fence with Israel.”

      https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/04/gaza-protest-latest-updates-180406092506561.html

  2. It is past time this country began moving quietly, unostentatiously, away from being an ally and friend of the United States of America.

    There are many reasons we need to be doing this – among them:

    • Trump’s attitude to climate change – heading the world inexorably towards disaster.

    • America as a sponsor of world-wide terrorism and government change, in particular support for the Saudi regime.

    • The predominance of the military-industrial complex in the US, which needs conflict to make profit.

    • Trump’s attitude to Iran and his subservience to the Israeli agenda for the Middle East.

    • There’s nothing to be gained by going down with USS Failing Empire.

    Not that I’m advocating closer relations with China, the other superpower – we surely don’t want to be dominated by such an authoritarian, human-rights denying country.

    We are walking blindfold into an environmental world-wide catastrophe which over the next decade is going to ramp up until even Trump will have to accept the validity of climate change.

    By then it will all be far too late – but the scramble for safe havens will have begun! Be ready to repel boarders!

    • AsleepWhileWalking 2.1

      ” • There’s nothing to be gained by going down with USS Failing Empire.”

      Aye.

      But there is a shitload of downside continuing to be strong allies. Its only a matter of time before we get sucked into more war, are targeted by terrorism because of our alliance, or are overrun by US expats escaping the carnage of a hyperinflating USD.

      Trump’s expectations NZ pay more for medicine are just the beginning.

      • Ed 2.1.1

        We have soldiers in Iraq as we speak fighting America’s imperial wars.

      • Sanctuary 2.1.2

        The problem for NZ is our security is basically guaranteed by Australia (let’s face it, it is unimaginable that we could stay out of any serious conflict involving Australia), a country that in turn is still an unquestioning US ally. So while we can do our best to keep Trumpistan at arms length, we can only go so far.

        • Adrian Thornton 2.1.2.1

          Our security from what..or whom exactly?

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2.1.1

            Any country with a gun and a desire to expand. That includes quite a few nations that are quite close and have over population problems and collapsing environments.

            We really do need to be able to defend ourselves.

    • Wayne 2.2

      There is a reason why we will only go so far down that track, and it is Australia.

      I do think NZ is going to do some distancing from our traditional allies, the UK poisoning and the response to Syria are indicators.

      But we won’t become non-aligned like Chile. Though Chile is part of CPTPP and sends naval ships to the US led RIMPAC exercises off Hawaii. So it is more aligned to the west than other South American nations.

      However, our relationship with Australia (which is fundamentally non-negotiable) means we are necessarily in a closer orbit than Chile.

      I would also note that US power is not in fundamental decline. They are almost the fastest growing economy in the OECD. They have over 350 million people, which makes them the third most populous nation on earth. They are have a huge and rich territory. Yes, China is rising, but what that means is that the world will soon have two superpowers, no other nation comes close to these two.

      So the US is a fundamental reality in the Pacific, including having sovereign territory in the South Pacific (American Samoa). And if Trump pulls off the North Korea issue, then that will be quite a boost for the US with many Asia Pacific nations.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.1

        if Trump pulls off the North Korea issue

        You mean, if he gets the DPRK to only stockpile nuclear weapons that can threaten its immediate neighbours rather than the mainland USA? Because that’s what he’s proposing.

        I don’t think that’s going to impress Japan much. Which Asia Pacific nations are you talking about?

      • tracey 2.2.2

        Intetestingly as an outsider it appears to me South Korea and North Korea are as responsible for any denuclearisation as Trump. It coukd be argued that knowing what areactive chap Trump is they provoked him for an extreme reaction, knowing the machine around him woukd stop him short of a military strike, espesh with Guam in range, and hey presto there are now talks and maybe some lifting of selected sanctions.

        This rush to credit Trump reeks of sycophancy or …

        • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.1

          “Denuclearisation” doesn’t mean that DPRK will abandon its nukes. Read the small print.

        • Wayne 2.2.2.2

          North and South Korea can take matters only so far. The key nations to ultimately settle the issues are actually China and the US.

          I appreciate Standardnistas (and the left generally – the Democrats are in a bit of a panic that he will pull it off) do not want to give credit to Trump for anything at all, but he certainly has been a key player in this whole thing.

          And of course if Trump doesn’t do a deal, well he gets no credit. The Democrats will be secretly happy. All that will certainly be a pressure on him at the upcoming talks. He has raised expectations. Now as the “deal maker” he has to deliver. And of course he wants to show the Democrats that he can do better than them.

          As for denuclearisation, I think that will be a staged process, but I think it will end with North Korea completely giving up its weapons. Obviously that would involve a complete peace deal with cast iron security guarantees and massive investment from China, South Korea and the US.

          • Stephen Doyle 2.2.2.2.1

            Bryan Gould seems closer to reality than most.

            http://www.bryangould.com/big-rocket-man/

            • Chris 2.2.2.2.1.1

              Gould’s on the money. Kim has nowhere to go trading threats with Trump. Trump’s such a lunatic nobody would be surprised if he took NK out. Kim’s worked out that the far better legacy is being responsible for reunification with the south, and he knows that that’s what the people of both Koreas want and have done so since the war. The desire for reunification has never waned one bit, it’s as strong as it’s ever been. What a legacy that’d be.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.2.2

            This is the fifth (iirc) time in the last three decades that the DPRK has offered ‘peace talks’. Each time, they have used the breathing space provided to continue a weapons development program which has now achieved its goal.

            This time it’s going to be different. Uh huh.

            Also, “denuclearisation” means different things to different people. I appreciate that right wingers feel protective of their leader and must fall into line behind everything he says and does, whether it’s serial rape or nazism, and I bet you don’t like being lumped in with Nunes and Bannon either.

            Still, sauce, meet gander.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.2.2.3

            Is this what you meant by “staged”?

            BREAKING — North Korea has suspended talks with South Korea, because of a military drill conducted by South Korea and the US, North Korean state news agency KCNA reports.

            A truly convincing performance 🙄

      • Anne 2.2.3

        Wayne @ 2.2
        I respect your analysis when it comes to international sovereignty issues because your knowledge and experience is far greater than mine.

        Cast aside the objectivity for once and tell me what you really think of the behaviour of Donald Trump. I know you wanted to see Hillary Clinton win and I did too, so we were both more or less on the same page on that score.

        But can you really continue to support the US under this current regime? I can’t. Their president is insane. He is surrounded by equally insane fundamentalist crack-pots. He’s lacking any intellectual prowess and above all he’s a psychopath in my view. In short, it is no longer an hyperbole to compare him with people like Hitler, Mussolini or Stalin even if he is still to commit atrocities on the same scale as they did. Mark my words, they will come in some form or another if he is given long enough at the helm.

        • OnceWasTim 2.2.3.1

          Geeeeez @ Anne. That’s bloody magnanimous of you. Wayne probably has all the attributes you see him as having. The trouble is, like a true blue comfy little gNat his ideology kicks in like something in the nature of a religion.
          By the way, David Farrar is about to be on ‘The Panel’ posing as an expert on the ‘Palestine Problem’

          • OnceWasTim 2.2.3.1.1

            Well there ya go @ Anne. Try unpicking Wayne’s response bit by bit.
            e.g.
            “can you really blame Trump for Israel’s current actions? ”
            (Do you think Israel would have acted in the manner they had without knowing they had Trump’s/You Ess of A’s unbridled support? whether in regard to Palestine, or Iran or North Korea…………they’re in ‘Ya Vol Herr Commandant lock step’
            e.g.
            Israelis have a right to defend their border…..but then WHICH border is that?
            Is it the border as mandated by the UN a few decades back?, or is it the border they now claim?.
            Then there are questions over ‘ the State of Israel”s propriety and the lack of any ‘do unto others as you would have done to you’ (such as the supply of weaponry to Seth Efikaan regimes in the past)

            BTW, apparently on the basis of maternal heritage ….. I could be a dirty filthy Jew. Oh woe Oh woe!!!!!!!!!! I’m still a fucking victim, and what’s worse, my victimhood supercedes any bloody A-rabs right to claim that status.

        • Wayne 2.2.3.2

          Anne,

          While I still think Hilliary would have been a better president I don’t think Trump can be remotely compared to Hitler or Stalin, the worst mass murderers of the last 1,000 years. Nothing I have seen of Trump would indicate he is into their kinds of tendencies. A populist authoritarian instead. Berlusconi is a far better analogy.

          While Trump simply does not seem remotely presidential, he has had some successes, though I appreciate that for most on the left, his success are failures. So I would say the reduction in regulation and the tax package have helped spur the US economy so that unemployment is 3.9% and growth is among the highest in the OECD. Just about all European countries would love to have that level of economic success.

          As for foreign policy, well Korea would outweigh his failures.

          For instance can you really blame Trump for Israel’s current actions? The Israeli government seems perfectly capable of doing these things all by itself. Their reactions at Gaza seems completely disproportionate, but that has been the case with Gaza for the last 18 years.

          While the Israelis obviously have a right to defend their border, that should not mean killing over 50 people, not unless the Israeli soldiers are being attacked with firearms. Surely other means were available that would have been effective in maintaining the border, including a far superior fence. The fence they have seems almost been designed to provoke the Palestinians into thinking they can get through it if they are determined enough.

          • Zorb6 2.2.3.2.1

            Seems like the British Empire killed more than Hitler and Stalin together,Wayne.

            he British journalist Johann Hari writing in The Independent in 2006 argued that Britain possibly killed up to 29 million Indians in the late nineteenth century alone:
            http://www.independent.co.uk/voi

            This claim has been disputed by a number of leading historians, but The Independent has effectively repeated the claim in its list of the five worst atrocities carried out by the British Empire (2016):

            • In Vino 2.2.3.2.1.1

              If Wayne replies, he will probably say that he was speaking about the reigns of Hitler and Stalin – individual people. Lord knows how many the Russians did in altogether if you include Ivan the Terrible and Catherine the Great, etc.
              But it strikes me that Victoria reigned for so long that maybe your argument succeeds under her name. Could Queen Victoria be up there with Stalin and Hitler?
              An amusing idea, but I don’t care enough to Google it myself.

          • Macro 2.2.3.2.2

            So I would say the reduction in regulation and the tax package have helped spur the US economy so that unemployment is 3.9% and growth is among the highest in the OECD. Just about all European countries would love to have that level of economic success.

            Unbelievable!
            I suggest you read this Wayne: “A Running List of How Trump Is Changing the Environment” (last updated 11 May 18) By National Geographic.
            It is nothing short of environmental vandalism – but coming from a Party that itself was little more than environmental vandals -trashing the ETS, rorting the system with Hot Air credits from off shore, and letting our greatest emitters off scot free; then doing absolutely nothing to address or mitigate our continuing growing emissions, while greenwashing at every International forum, and at the same time overseeing our waterways turning into sewers, I guess one should expect nothing more.
            In the end Wayne, the economy is a subset of the environment not the other way round.

            • In Vino 2.2.3.2.2.1

              The economy makes a good servant but a bad master. Wayne is among those who cannot comprehend…

  3. AsleepWhileWalking 3

    Ariel Rubin is ICRC’s Head of Digital Content. Earlier this year, he and his team released “Enter The Room,” an augmented reality experience that portrays the traumatic effect that urban warfare has on its victims, all without depicting a single human. Instead, “Enter The Room” puts the viewer within a child’s bedroom that just happens to be within a war zone, and shows the tragic ways the room changes as the war outside rages on year after year. The app has received widespread acclaim for its inventive narrative approach and its emotionally resonant use of AR technology.

    https://www.inthemesh.com/archive/enter-the-room-ar-humanitarian-tool/

    https://youtu.be/-rhF4yYgSUc

  4. Ed 4

    To continue on the theme of media bias, Giles Beckworth is a wonderful puppet for the banksters, big finance and multinational corporations.
    RNZ allows a long report by business’ having no faith in the government.

    Will unions get a daily spot for 15 minutes on RNZ for balance?
    Or environmental organisations get 15 minutes?
    Health professionals?
    Teachers?

    RNZ unquestionably repeats the words of capital.

    • Gabby 4.1

      Did Giles mention a massive fall in business confidence due to having to pay staff to clean up after closing time?

    • AB 4.2

      Giles’ greatest crime is that he sneers at the bird call. Unforgivable!
      The rest of his stuff is just cheerleading for business.

  5. Jenny 5

    The Independent reported that more than 52 Palestinians killed by Israeli troops yesterday.

    President Trump is reported to have said, “This is a great day for Israel”

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/05/14/palestinians-killed-israeli-troops-gaza-protests-ahead-us-embassy/

    If the German troops guarding the Warsaw Ghetto had mowed down Polish Jews trying to storm the barriers imprisoning them, I don’t think President Roosevelt would have said, “This is great day for Germany”, no matter what sort of triumphalist celebration the Germans were throwing for themselves in another part of the occupied Polish capital.

  6. savenz 6

    Christine Rose on why the existing railway line from Kumeu (and actually to Helensville) is being ignored, for a yet to be built billion dollar light rail and will not do a direct link up to the CBD anyway for those commuters who were the ones forced to have so many unitary plan changes which has created traffic chaos around State highway 16.

    https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2018/05/14/the-case-against-light-rail/#comment-426383.

    This seems to be very similar to how the yet-to-be-built-affordable-housing scenario seems to be going. You sell off the existing state houses creating massive shortages while then promising some more houses in the never-never time frame which also keep going up higher and higher as time goes on.

    At the same time put up taxes to pay for the new housing, effectively selling off state land aka assets sales for the housing much of which is to be privatised into private hands to ‘pay for it’, borrow more money for the $1000+ per week hotels that the ex state house people used to live in while they wait for the ‘new housing’ which they don’t seem to be able to afford anyway.

    Also for every one waiting for action on housing and transport and health add more overseas construction workers, and overseas roading workers to be living and driving around and using the hospitals and so forth making the housing and transport and health crisis even worse… sounds like a well thought through plan? sarcasm.

    • ScottGN 6.1

      That piece suffers from the same flawed thinking that Mike Lee has succumbed to. A focus on the end-to-end journey on public transport and overlooking the whole reason for the 2 light rail routes which is the millions of shorter point to point journeys possible across the whole route.

      • savenz 6.1.1

        If you make a long journey stop at every point to point journey it becomes too long! You have to remember we are talking trains and long distances not tubes! You have to get the point to point people to drive to the main hub (aka like park and ride) so that it improves the entire journey time and makes it quicker than a car.

        Currently most public transport journeys seem to take at least 50 -500% longer than the car journey. Something is wrong with whoever is running this service! (just type any journey into AT website).

        Aka Pt Chev to Auckland CBD takes 45minutes by bus and 15 minutes by car.
        Helensville to CBD takes 1.2 hours but 40 minutes by car.

        When you work out the return you are wasting too much time if you use current public transport.

        In normal countries public transport is faster that is why people use it!

        Business people don’t have an extra 1 -4 hours a day to spend on our slow-to-go public transport. Think about it!

        • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.1

          When you work out the return you are wasting too much time if you use current public transport.

          Or it could be viewed as having more time as you can work on public transport but you can’t while driving.

          • savenz 6.1.1.1.1

            I have yet to see anyone working on a bus. You get car sick on a bus when reading for most people, so normally it’s pretty hard to work on one.

            Apparently you get mugged if you bring out an iPad or computer or even a phone on Britomart since they got rid of all the conductors and security.

            For longer journeys when the existing train line is there, use it and make it direct enough so it is faster than a car and comfortable enough to work in, just like in countries in Europe.

            We need to get quality transport going straight away, people don’t have years to wait around, and it’s also got to be a viable alternative to a car, safe and secure.

            • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.1.1.1

              You get car sick on a bus when reading for most people, so normally it’s pretty hard to work on one.

              [Citation Needed]

              Apparently you get mugged if you bring out an iPad or computer or even a phone on Britomart since they got rid of all the conductors and security.

              [Citation Needed]

              We need to get quality transport going straight away, people don’t have years to wait around, and it’s also got to be a viable alternative to a car, safe and secure.

              It’s already viable, safe and secure.

  7. savenz 7

    … massive housing estate in this area, of course not much planning for transport, schools or the environment or hospitals… and for those that still believe in ‘trickle down’ housing, nope don’t be looking for the affordable housing options here, they’ll be over 1 million dollars and the developers will profit and the rest of the rate payers and community will bear the massive and ongoing costs of lazy planning. Part of Asia here we come!

    We could be the last generation to have swimmable seas and eatable shellfish and even fish around our cities. What a shame idiots and greed is destroying our country and it’s even making us poorer as we have to borrow and sell off assets to keep the Ponzi thinking afloat.

    Acres of shellfish dead in north Auckland estuary

    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2018/05/acres-of-shellfish-dead-in-north-auckland-estuary.html

    • greywarshark 7.1

      Love the image of National Party leader taking part in protests to support better health facilities. Perhaps we will see politicians protesting against themselves over not doing effective planning and practical policy when they had the opportunity while in power. They could have for instance, ensured that there was sufficient housing for all in this ‘developed’ country; this Godzone, rock-star economy, now ticking along nicely thank you according to the cult who have managed to be in the right spot when the cargo is unloaded.

      But where actually has it been unloaded? Apparently badly designed computer programming (probably done by an Australian firm) has led google to show the dark sinister tower of Sauron, Barad-dur, as being in Brisbane!
      Our politics a Lord of the Rings sequel with Brisbane as Mordor?

      I am wondering if our politicians have been technologically connecting to an Australian site operating out of Brisbane when we thought they were solidly in Wellington at the Beehive. Perhaps all the houses, and the hospitals, and so on have been built on an industrial site in Brisbane under the auspices of a foreign investment by a NZ SOE?

      Everything is so fan-fan-fantastic these days and when the pollies talk about rock-star economies etc we don’t think they are exaggerating and painting it all up. Perhaps the political activity is real, but not in NZ as we know it Simmy, you just have to know which Sim card to put in your device.

  8. The Chairman 8

    What a disappointing stance the PM has taken.

    Jacinda says “the alternative is for us to do nothing.”

    https://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/2018644922/budget-2018-jacinda-ardern-talks-housing-plans

    No, Jacinda. The alternative is to do more to address and improve the situation.

    Of course, doing more will require more funding. And this is where the Government becomes stuck. They have largely constrained their ability to do more due to their Budget Responsibility Rules.

    So effectively Jacinda is saying we have a plan, it is ambitious while also insufficient but it’s better than doing nothing at all. But hey, we will maintain a surplus which should keep big business happy, thus we believe we have the balance about right.

    • Bearded Git 8.1

      National did worse than nothing. It actively encouraged property speculation with its tax regime and failure to restrict foreign buyers.

      Labour is:
      1. Ending the ability to offset so-called losses on rental properties against tax
      2. Has brought in a 5 year bright line test
      3. Has restricted foreign purchases of existing houses.
      4. More to come Thursday?

      All of these measures have been met by howls of rage from the property speculating class and so will clearly be effective in bringing house prices down in the long term.

      I do think that Jacinda sounded weak this morning on Morning Report in relation to the $650k is the cheapest we can make houses in Akl. Labour needs to find a way to get this down to $475k.

      And Labour’s election promise to keep electrified trains on the Wellington-Auckland route also seems to have gone out of the window-not a good look Jacinda.

      • The Chairman 8.1.1

        “All of these measures have been met by howls of rage from the property speculating class and so will clearly be effective in bringing house prices down in the long term.”

        Not while housing demand continues to outstrip supply.

        As National lowered the bar so low, it’s flawed to use them or their efforts as a measure.

      • greywarshark 8.1.2

        Labour coalition could get round the high house price cost by setting up other housing projects where they won’t be hung up on previous promises and price targets. It doesn’t have to be TINA FGS. Have up to 10 options so that something can be done in short time, we will be at 6 months and there should be a parade of new projects small and medium.

        A special deal for people who can house a person/people in a spare bedroom, so that no benefits are lost would be good. This would be at the discretion of the houseowner and would need to be someone who would not be a burden. A semi-circle of tiny houses with carports between and little walled gardens so having own space, and a wall to road giving privacy.

        One good way of increasing housing availability! More state housing, small 2 bedroom provided for old age pensioners and cheap, with a reasonable valuation if they vacate their 3 bedroom house for state purchase, and the right to keep the rent if they rent a bedroom to family member or someone that suits. An immediate house for a family, a room for a single person, student, and a ground floor unit or house for the pensioner.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.2

      They have largely constrained their ability to do more due to their Budget Responsibility Rules.

      That is true. Buying in to the RWNJs lies of having a surplus is what’s needed when the country, quite literally, doesn’t function without government spending.

      • The Chairman 8.2.1

        They have also fiscally constrained themselves by largely ruling out tax hikes.

        And despite the rhetoric (re addressing inequality) they seem to favour regressive taxes over progressive taxes. Evident by them ruling out income taxes from the tax working group’s terms of reference coupled with a number of the new taxes being considered.

  9. OnceWasTim 9

    The Labour Inspectorate of the Ministry for Buggery, Incompetence and Everything (MBIE) is now calling for employees to notify them if they think they’ve been ripped off by way of ‘Smith’s City type practices’.
    Whereupon they’ll descend on said employers in stab-proof vests and give them a right reckoning. In so doing, they’ll show they really mean Business (in an Innovative sort of way), and that they really really really DO have a concern for the plight of workers who’ve been royally ripped over the past decade, or more
    And just to prove they’re ‘onside’ (going forward), Dickie Bird tells me they’re making arrangements for the Royal Wedding to be displayed on a curved screen in Stout Street so that plebs can stand outside and watch proceedings. Dickie also tells me they’ve even called back former CEO Smol on contract to advise – because they’re so utterly concerned (now, though not over the past decade).
    And now, they really really really do intend recruiting more Labour Inspectors. They’re convinced the savings made by shutting down their Immigration NZ presence in offices throughout NZ and abroad, as well as the Ministry’s use of demographic profiling will ensure SFA change to their balance sheet. Indeed, all new recruits to the Labour Inspectorate can expect to be equipped with their own stab-proof vests.
    A Standard contributor is expected to make a Press Release shortly having given his due consideration to fairness and balance, and has recommended that other public servants should also be equipped with stab-proof vests (such as IRD and MSD front-line personnel).

  10. Gabby 10

    Too right chairy. Anything less than the state going into competition with the private sector suppliers and builders and exempting itself from consent fees is weak weak weak.

    • savenz 10.1

      If the vacuous Julie Christie can rustle up quality housing for a reality TV show in a few months, you would think all the powers of the state could conjure up some housing within the same time frames, renovate the existing state housing blocks or make a phone call for a tiny house ($95k all up fully built and delivered against a 1 room hotel costing $50k pa) to put on state house land.. to ease the crisis.

      Ofcourse that does not divert the many construction firms and consultants at the teat any public money, which might be where the problem lies as it’s just about delivering quality cheap housing that is also cheap to heat and maintain which does not make the utility industry happy.

      https://inhabitat.com/luxurious-off-grid-tiny-home-in-new-zealand-is-100-self-sustaining/

      http://nztinyhomes.com

      http://www.diyhousebuilding.com/tiny-house-trailer.html

      (These look a lot nicer and cheaper than a 1 room hotel at great expense!)

      • savenz 10.1.1

        As a business scenario for housing NZ lets think about it. Charge rent $200p/w for a 2 bedroom tiny house, which means no accomodation allowance needed for the low income going to private landlords or hoteliers…. then after around tens years the rent will have paid it off… and a ground rent charge could be put in…or the money needed for repairs or replacement made.

        Even if it was just for a decade to ease housing demand and let the private sector do their thing without public money and assets being sold off. Something is needed for low income people to have the chance to live somewhere safe, cheap and with more security.

        • The Chairman 10.1.1.1

          Good to see someone has been giving this some thought, savenz. Shame Jacinda is lacking the commonsense and vision required to do more.

        • greywarshark 10.1.1.2

          How dare you suggest such a practical sounding idea savenz.
          You are giving the idea that the gummint hasn’t got any ideas of its own, and that they are all and only to be found in this post. That is three ‘ideas’ already. We can do better too. Why don’t we set up as contractors and get something going?

      • james 10.1.2

        From memory – there is a poster in here that lives in a tiny house and has for a wee while – will be interesting to know how they are finding it after living in it a bit.

        Anyone remember who it is?

        • Rosemary McDonald 10.1.2.1

          My partner and I (including his wheelchair) live most of our time in a 7mx2m converted Bus…does that count as Tiny House living?

          • james 10.1.2.1.1

            I would assume – I dont think there are many ‘rules’.

            • Rosemary McDonald 10.1.2.1.1.1

              How about, if anyone is truly interested the the whys and wherefores of living small/tiny, compile a list of “I always wanted to know…?” questions and those of us living this way will answer as best we can.

        • savenz 10.1.2.2

          @ James. I’m sure it’s much better than some of the hotels and boarding houses that I’ve seen at great cost to the taxpayer with the person having that debt put against them for a lifetime.

        • Koff 10.1.2.3

          My partner and I have lived in a boat for the last 30 years. Too small for kids, but at least we don’t have to worry about floods and never had to fork out for a mortgage! A tiny house might seem a bit intimidatingly large, now!

          • Rosemary McDonald 10.1.2.3.1

            Yes…I’ve been looking at some of the plans….all that space…to heat, to clean to fill with stuff… 🙁

            Upside of true tiny house (ie, on a road legal trailer) is one can still cast off the mooring lines and set sail. 😉

        • marty mars 10.1.2.4

          That was me. For 1.5 years me, wife, 10 and 2 year old plus dog and cat lived in a tiny house. 7longx2.5widex4.25highM We’ve just moved to a ‘normal’ house. The contrast is amazing- just so so good. Recommended for those that need higher levels of appreciation for what they have.

          Tiny house challenging to live in and when you’re in there you make it work – when you leave you realise it is really bloody small but perfect too.

          • veutoviper 10.1.2.4.1

            A Dave Dobyn moment!

            Welcome home/back, marty mars. I have missed you.

          • patricia bremner 10.1.2.4.2

            Hi Marty, we lived off and on in a motorhome, a six berth Maui for 5 years. It had two lounge areas, one u shaped one a lounger (two double beds.) shower/toilet fold out hand basin, kitchen with gas hobs and griller, and pantry cupboard and a ‘fridge freezer. We had 9 lift out storage cupboards overhead, three kitchen cupboards and two drawers. Under seat storage was 7 feet long on both sides of the van. Outside we had a slot long enough for fishing rods, and two lift out storage areas on one side, and on the other, gas bottle and toilet cassette access. Over cab/ double bed or storage space. We had two tables and outdoor table and chairs. We also had a wind out awning, and fly
            screens on all doors and windows. Onthe roof we had two solar panels which ran all lights the ‘fridge freezer, ports for charging ‘phones and computers.
            This cost about the same as a tiny home without land …$49 000 to $58 000.
            We invested a lump pension in this, so we could retire at 60. We only lost $4000 when we sold four years later. 22 feet by 7 feet area.

      • Gosman 10.1.3

        Where is this State land available for housing that isn’t already committed?

        • savenz 10.1.3.1

          Unitec! The many state houses in the portfolio that have back gardens or outdoor spaces that could be used. Even schools to house the teachers! Part of parks etc etc.

          • savenz 10.1.3.1.1

            Remuera golf course, camp grounds…plenty of land at Long bay where they are putting in the multimillion dollar housing estates….and polluting the shellfish.

            • savenz 10.1.3.1.1.1

              I’m pretty sure than low rise tiny houses are also preferable to 7 years of development and a high rise for many of the neighbours.

              • savenz

                They could do tiny houses as a temporary measure for 10 years and then change planning straight away so that any apartments need to have x on every build have to have a certain amount allocated for social housing only.

                Done and dusted, with little public money being spent, debt created and much less inequality created.

                • savenz

                  in addition it would disrupt the alarming up ward escalation of house prices away from NZ wage levels which would also curb speculation and encourage those to invest away from construction and real estate… there would not be the need for the immigration Ponzi scheme, so immigration could go back to normal levels and allow the locals to catch up and get a job and house like previous generations… a bit easier to save when your rent is $200 p/w…

            • Barfly 10.1.3.1.1.2

              Yup I would really like for the government (if possible) to forcibly purchase the “Remuera Golf Course” (Public Works Act or some such?) great place for housing, parks and hell throw in a mall for ongoing revenue.

            • james 10.1.3.1.1.3

              Long bay is privately owned – unless you want people living in the reserve.

              • savenz

                @James, I was thinking the reserve – they already have cabins for housing there I think and a lot allocated for very inefficiently planned parking which has never been updated.

                Even if it’s just for 10 years it would allow time to ease the crisis… of Course they would have to make sure they did not pollute but in general tiny housing is very sustainable with sustainable power and water and sewerage options… You can even burn sewerage now at source with incinerating toilets. (Something to get the Green Party to investigate).

            • Gosman 10.1.3.1.1.4

              Is Remuera Golf course owned by the State?

              • Barfly

                Auckland City Council leased at a tiny amount to a private membership golf club – you could house many many more people there than are members of the golf club (with generous parks and amenities included)

          • The Chairman 10.1.3.1.2

            Rangitoto College was doing a feasibility study into building housing for teachers on the school grounds.

            https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11868150

        • savenz 10.1.3.2

          Maraes..

          • Gosman 10.1.3.2.1

            Maraes are not State owned

            • savenz 10.1.3.2.1.1

              Marae’s are spaces that might be considered to house low income Maori for example… using something like tiny houses, a quick transportable option that is affordable to the renter… and a ground lease to the site… might work depending on the Marae ..

              • Gosman

                Shouldn’t this be up to whoever runs the respective Marae?

                • savenz

                  Well we have been waiting 9 years for National to solve the housing crisis, forever for Auckland council to solve the housing crisis (in fact both of those have manufactured it) and I think Labour are going off on a red herring and if they spend a lot of money, put up taxes and have little affordable housing in 2 years, it’s not gonna be good.

      • Rosemary McDonald 10.1.4

        http://nztinyhomes.com/pricing-new/

        One Bedroom $95,000
        Two Bedroom $125,000
        We ship worldwide so this price includes all FOB and flat rack shipping costs to your nearest port.
        Each tiny home arrives fully assembled turn-key ready and on its trailer.
        Price includes 24-month warranty on all appliances with 5 year warranty on tiny home.
        Price also includes transit Insurance.
        Our Tiny Homes come fully assembled and delivered to your site and set up and 16 week delivery time from deposit being paid.
        The off grid solar package with batteries valued at $15,000 NZD is priced to you at $6,500 NZD
        Price includes Freight

        • Gosman 10.1.4.1

          A plot of land in Auckland is likely to set you back three to five hundred thousand dollars. So regardless of how big these houses are and how cheap they are to make you have to fact that in to the total amount. Your two bedroom house is still $425,000 at the lower end and $625,000 at the higher end. While $425,000 is cheaper than average it is still a lot of money.

          • Rosemary McDonald 10.1.4.1.1

            The government/council owns land that could be flexibly leased to tiny house dwellers.

            • Gosman 10.1.4.1.1.1

              Why has this land not been released for development already?

              • Sacha

                Because most of it has been previously set aside for future public uses like parks and schoiols. Twyford continuing Nuck Smith’s goldrush mentality is not helpful long term.

                • Gosman

                  Therefore we are still stuck with a situation where there is not enough land available for the current houses let alone the existing ones that need to be built if we implement this Tiny home idea of Rosemary.

                  • Sacha

                    There is plenty of re-developable land for more intense dwellings like some nations have favoured for centuries. Rules skewed in favour of fogies need to change.

              • Herodotus

                Because the current infrastructure is not in place to cope with any increase.
                The council/Watercare do not have the funds available to spend of this or more importantly the skills to manage such projects. That is why the council expects developers to project manage, fund & construct new infrastructure.
                Just look at the new govt development at Unitec. a 29 ha block and it is to be completed in 10 years !!!! Come on.
                They cannot even be consistent with the number of dwelling, a small block like this is to cater for

                https://www.greaterauckland.org.nz/2018/03/26/huge-housing-development-unitec-announced/
                The land at Unitec’s Mt Albert campus, just 9km from Auckland’s CBD, will be transferred from Unitec to the Crown with the intention of building a community of between 3000-4000 homes.
                https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/74455575/unitec-wairaka-precinct-development-puts-pressure-on-mt-albert
                The plan to develop up to 1800 new homes at Unitec’s Mt Albert campus is meeting opposition from some residents.

          • savenz 10.1.4.1.2

            Not if the government or council rents out the land for a small ground lease income to a tiny house renter…

            There is a percentage of society that will probably never own a house or are now too old to save for one. They are often on low incomes and this is an option for them.

            There are also people renting trying to save for a house aka teachers, police, cleaners, this is a low cost rental option while they save…

            There are also people who are students who need cheap accomodation while they study…

            Single parents who need 2 bedrooms in a good area close to a school…

          • The Chairman 10.1.4.1.3

            “A plot of land in Auckland is likely to set you back three to five hundred thousand dollars.”

            There are sections available for far cheaper than that, at around 600m2 for around $250k. A few tiny homes could fit on that.

            • savenz 10.1.4.1.3.1

              The whole point is there is plenty of state land or land that could be part used for housing!!! They are selling land off, aka Unitec to pay for the housing! I’m suggesting keeping the land in public hands and add on housing with low carbon footprint that is cheap and can be taken away at any time they are not longer needed!

    • The Chairman 10.2

      @Gabby

      With so many major problems in this country, the downward spiral is compounding daily. And the Government’s insufficient offerings isn’t enough to counter that.

      Thus, the alternative of not doing more will result in things becoming worse.

      Glossing over that realisation will be extremely difficult come next election.

      • greywarshark 10.2.1

        Great, The Chairman
        When the sun pours down and people groan in the heat, we will always be able to rely on you to throw a grey cloud over the polity. Keep it up – it is comforting to know that some things don’t change. The denizens here are getting to accept you, in a reverse psychology way – we are so used to being ignored that even negative input is welcome. Sad.

        • The Chairman 10.2.1.1

          Shooting at those that speak up doesn’t help encourage others too, greywarshark. So what is your agenda here?

          If we all remain silent and accept these insufficient offerings, the Government is unlikely to up their game.

          They think they have the balance about right, thus it’s up to us to tell them otherwise when and if we don’t agree. Yet, you seem to have a problem with that. Why is that?

          • greywarshark 10.2.1.1.1

            I think Chairman that you are very happy to sow seeds of doubt in Labour and will always find something to show negative concern about. Perhaps sometimes first a positive, but then a negative.

            • The Chairman 10.2.1.1.1.1

              I’m merely playing with the cards they are dealing. So don’t point the finger at me.

              Clearly, I’m not happy with the way a number of issues are being handled, thus I’m speaking out.

              I’d be far happier if that wasn’t required, but with the cards they are dealing, it shouldn’t be any wonder why I’m inclined to speak out.

              So if you disagree with what I’m saying, address that instead of having a crack at me.

              • McFlock

                Maybe you’re just one of nature’s glum pricks.
                Maybe it’s Maybelline.

                Maybe you’re not playing cards, but scrabble, and you’re one of those players who only tries to spell out dirty words.

            • Robert Guyton 10.2.1.1.1.2

              Grey – the Chairman’s bulls*tting you and your assessment of his purpose is spot on; he’s a “strategic Eeyore”, relentlessly pouring cold water on the Left, never owning his/her behaviour, forever presenting a mouth in which butter wouldn’t melt – you have him pegged, despite his guileless protestations and mewling of “don’t pick on me, I’m only doing what has to be done!”. If you’re hoping that one day he’ll ‘fess up to his behaviour – forget it! His modus operandi requires that he never break step; you’ll not get a mea culpa from The Chairman, only more “hurt feelings from the softy-troll.

              • The Chairman

                Totally incorrect, Robert.

                You are appealing to the ignorant by stating otherwise as people can see I’m advocating for a more left direction.

                Moreover, people will be questioning why you constantly go after me rather than address my actual concerns.

                • Robert Guyton

                  Oh, The Chair, how set-upon you are! And how neatly McFlock skewers you and pricks your fantasy-bubble!
                  ‘people will be questioning” you claim?
                  Love to hear from any that exist outside of your head.

                  • The Chairman

                    “Oh, The Chair, how set-upon you are!”

                    Indeed. Evident by your posts, McFlock’s, greywarshark and of course Vino.

                    All directed at me personally rather than the concerns stated.

                    If you genuinely believe the crap you are spouting about me, then you seriously have issues in your head. Seems you are coping with it by trying to convince yourself I’m an undercover right-winger. I’m not. Therefore, I would advise you seek help. And I’m being serious here.

                    • McFlock

                      I’m pretty sure that every single person you named has, at one time or another, suggested ways you could raise your concerns without looking like a “find a problem a day” troll.

                      But what you probably should be concerned about isn’t what I or any of the others say, just what Robert writes.

                      Because everyone else is pretty happy to call someone a dick and roll in the mud. But ever since he popped upon my radar, Robert has been one of the most patient, moderate, relaxed, live-and-let-live commenters I’ve read.

                      Except when it comes to you.

                      I’m now waiting for the Dalai Lama to call you a shithead.

                    • The Chairman

                      “Robert has been one of the most patient, moderate, relaxed, live-and-let-live commenters I’ve read”

                      Is this the same Robert that gets his kicks stirring up shit over at Kiwiblog?

                      I’m pretty sure no matter how I frame my criticism it will ruffle feathers here. The cheerleaders here don’t tolerate criticism well.

                      Merely asking a question can set them off.

                    • The Chairman

                      Here’s a link in reference to Robert getting his kicks.

                      Open Mike 13/10/2017

                    • McFlock

                      Dunno about other blogs. But do you have anything here of him going off at anyone other than you? Because I don’t.

                    • The Chairman

                      The fact he admits online trolling is his career shows he is far from the pinnacle of being of stable and genuine character.

                      Which brings into question your judge of character.

                    • McFlock

                      Maybe he’s just well behaved here, given you have no examples of him behaving immoderately here.

                      So why, in the face of gosman or puckish or alwyn any of the others, do you affect him so?

                    • The Chairman

                      Almost every comment he directs to me is him trolling. He’s a shit stirrer and he seems proud of it. But then again, so are you.

                      You also forgot Pete and James.

                      What seems to do his head in the most is (unlike the others) I’m from the left.

                    • McFlock

                      Just putting this out there – could it be that what really grinds his balls is that he feels your pattern of commenting is more divisive and destructive to the left than anything the tory trolls write? Therefore he either thinks you’re a tone deaf fool who ignores every polite attempt to point out the flavour of your comments, or that you’re simply lying about your political sympathies?

                    • The Chairman

                      Nah. He’s just a troll. This is how he gets his kicks. He doesn’t care about the political issues I raise. Evident by the fact he doesn’t address them. As displayed in this thread.

                      What seems to grind him is me being from the left makes it far more difficult for him to use his right wing attack lines.

                      As for your insinuation, what’s divisive and destructive to the left is a number of the policies and proposals of this Labour led Government. Such as their support of the TPP, PPP’s etc… Which I come here to discuss. Therefore, laying blame on me is akin to shooting the messenger.

                    • McFlock

                      If the messenger constantly edits every message in order to sow alarm and despondancy amongst the message recipients, in time of war that might not be the worst option. That messenger’s loyalties would be in question.

                    • The Chairman

                      No, McFlock.

                      If there is alarm and despondency it is a direct result of the policy, consideration or proposal the Government has announced. Such as their support for the TPP.

                    • McFlock

                      Your insistence on focusing on individual policies in isolation, and routinely criticise them for failing to resolve problems that other policies are designed to resolve, and exagerrating shortcomings, all mirror classic black propaganda techniques designed to lower morale.

                      But I’m sure your motives are noble, as you say.

                    • The Chairman

                      I don’t insist people focus on individual policies in isolation. And I acknowledge policies can interact. Thus, people are more than welcome to inject other policies that they believe may counter or offset. It’s all part of robust debate.

                      Therefore, once again, your assertion is incorrect.

                      Care to show where you believe I’ve have exaggerated shortcomings? As I don’t believe so.

                    • The Chairman

                      “But I’m sure your motives are noble, as you say.”

                      Why wouldn’t they be? You shouldn’t find it surprising that some of us have concerns with a number of policies of this Labour led Government.

                      Nor should it be surprising that some choose to express them.

                    • McFlock

                      Hang on, if you want to discuss Labour’s shortcomings, why is it on other people to explain to you that other policies are more relevant to the shortcoming you are focusing on that day?

                      As for exagerrated shortcomings and your motives, the first implies the second, and the first is illustrated in pretty much all your comments.

                      As far as I can see, none of your concerns are held for any particular length of time, whereas other commenters specialise in issues they care about. But you go for everything from tax policy to housing to environment to local government land valuations to nuances of welfare policies to I have no fucking idea. All allegedly things you are concerned about, but pretty much abandon after one open mike.

                      The one common them to your comments is your claims of concern. If you truly gave a shit, you’d read up on the issue you do actually care about, and you’d probably find that your concerns were addressed in other policies or the raw speech from which the news report drew the single statement from a minister that concerned you that day.

                      But you don’t seem to do that.

                    • The Chairman

                      I didn’t say it was on other people to inject them. I was implying I’m open to other people injecting them.

                      I also said I acknowledge policies can interact, therefore encompass them when I believe they are relevant. However, some may believe I’ve failed to take something into account, thus I welcome their injection as they may have a valid point, then again, they may not, which I’m happy to debate.

                      “As for exaggerated shortcomings and your motives, the first implies the second”

                      No, not necessarily.

                      People have different opinions, overlook or dispute variables etc, thus what you may believe has been exaggerated, others may not. Hence it opens debate, hopefully allowing a consensus to be reached.

                      I’m happy to concede if it’s shown I’m mistaken or overlooked something.

                      “The first is illustrated in pretty much all your comments”

                      You’ll have to be more specific as I don’t believe so.

                      Just because I’m no longer discussing an issue of concern doesn’t mean I’ve lost my concern over it. Take the TPP for example, people seldom discuss that much nowadays but many are still disappointed and concerned about it.

                      And of course I’m all over the place, politics isn’t based on one single issue and with the stance this Labour led Government is taking on a number of issues, there is more than one single issue causing me and others concern.

                      People also tire of talking about the same concern over and over again, especially when newer ones come to their attention, but again, it doesn’t mean the concern has gone.

                      “If you truly gave a shit, you’d read up on the issue you do actually care about, and you’d probably find that your concerns were addressed in other policies …”

                      I genuinely do give a shit (as you put it) and I do read up on matters. In which I seldom find other policies make a significant difference to alleviate the concern. If and when they do, I would no longer be concerned.

                      You are really clutching here to make something out of nothing.

                    • McFlock

                      if it’s good for the goose, it’s good for the gander.

                    • The Chairman

                      As for black propaganda, it’s the stance that this Labour led Government is taking on certain policies that is lowering morale. Such as their support of the TPP, etc.

                      I don’t misrepresent them, I highlight them with the hope highlighting their flaws coupled with the public reaction may encourage them to change their way.

                    • McFlock

                      You’re exceptionally good at the negative reinforcement, yes.

                      How’s that working out for you in getting folks to “lift their game”?

                    • The Chairman

                      “If it’s good for the goose, it’s good for the gander.”

                      No. I don’t make something out of nothing. My concerns are legit. Moreover, I’m generally far from being the only one that holds the concern. Again, take the TPP for example.

                      Additionally, as I may be a little more informed than others on certain matters, sometimes it may be I can see a concern before others.

                      You’ll find most of the concerns I have, I’ve raised before the election. As I could foresee the problems a number of Labour’s policies were going to create, such as their Budget Responsibility Rules.

                    • McFlock

                      You’re like an oytser that takes a grain of sand and, rather than a pearl, turns it into an enormous ball of crap.

                      Your reassurances about your motives, party alignment, and concerns mean nothing when compared against your commenting record.

                    • The Chairman

                      “How’s that working out for you in getting folks to ‘lift their game’?”

                      If more got in behind it would be more effective. However, I’ve had some small wins.

                      For example, I’ve been on Phil Twyford’s case for some time now, hence played a role in getting him to increase the number of state houses that the Government is going to provide.

                      If I was from the right as you continue to imply why would I want that to happen?

                    • The Chairman

                      Rubbish. My comments fully align with my left wing stance.

                    • McFlock

                      whatever, dude.

                    • McFlock

                      lol just reread your claim to have changed government policy.

                      Fucking ego, much? But either way, as a tory you’d be happy with the occasional small and unverifiable “win” – you can use it to get credibility for your continued efforts to sow division (like you just did).

                      If Ardern says “The Chairman, a blog commenter, has raised important issues that caused us to rethink our policy”, you might have a point. But however many years you’ve spent bitching on a multitude of topics, all you have is a claim to an unknown proportion of 6000 state houses, that they were probably going to do anyway.

                • In Vino

                  +100 Robert. Chairman is fake, and constantly gives himself away. I now forget who it was further up that twigged (like so many others eventually do) that Chairman is a fake Leftie. But may the number of those who twig continue to grow!

                  • The Chairman

                    With people like you shouting the lie over and over again, it’s only natural some may fall for it. But they would have to be rather ignorant and rather sheepish.

                  • The Chairman

                    I don’t appeal to the ignorant.

                    • Incognito

                      Your appeal to appeal doesn’t appeal to me. To appeal or not to appeal, that’s the question …

                      FYI, I don’t side with you so does that mean I agree with everything Labour and the Greens say, do, promise, and don’t say, do, or promise that raises your concern and causes your disappointment? I like to know what side I’m on and what I’m agreeing to because I’m concerned.

                      For somebody who regularly claims “I’m not the topic” you seem to be awfully frequently the topic of conversation here. I wonder why that might be, rhetorically speaking, of course …

                    • The Chairman

                      “For somebody who regularly claims “I’m not the topic” you seem to be awfully frequently the topic of conversation here.”

                      That’s simply because people like you want to continually make me the topic. It’s a way of distracting other readers from my concerns. With the personal smears and out right lies attempting to diminish my credibility.

                      Intelligent readers will see right through it, hence it appeals to the ignorant and those easily led.

                      You say you don’t side with me, cool. Put forward why you agree that doing nothing, not more is the alternative?

                    • Incognito

                      Has it ever occurred to you, oh intelligent and concerned one, that complex issues cannot and should not be simplified to binary positions like: you disagree with me therefore you must agree with statement XX by the PM on subject YY that I’ve ripped from its context in an intellectually lazy way?

                      Credibility takes time to build and can be destroyed in one comment. You appear to go about in the opposite way and your comments generally lack credibility; you also come across as less than genuine when challenged in debate, in my humble and ignorant opinion, of course. Cool?

                    • The Chairman

                      It’s not complex at all. The PM made a clear cut statement, hence you either agree more needs to be done or you don’t? Which is clearly too complex for you to answer.

                      But thanks for further proving my point re the personal attacks.

                    • Incognito

                      The Chairman’s idiosyncratic MO:

                      Lift one partial statement by PM from Morning Report (duration 7’ 07’’; see @ 8 for link) on the Government’s housing plans to tackle the housing crisis.

                      Ignore everything else the Government (not just the PM, or Labour, or whatever) has said and done about the housing crisis.

                      The housing crisis has been ravaging NZ society for quite a few years and is an enormously complex problem.

                      Nevertheless, The Chairman asserts that either you agree with said statement by the PM or you agree with him.

                      It’s not complex at all.

                      Very simple, indeed!

                      This is called reductio ad extremis (AKA reductio ad absurdum) for obvious reasons.

                      To top off the absurdity of The Chairman’s thinking he falsely accuses challengers of “personal attacks” even when there are none whatsoever. Tilting at windmills comes to mind …

                    • The Chairman

                      To top off the absurdity of Incognito’s thinking, he publicly smears me with his personal opinions then has the audacity to deny doing it.

                      The PM made a jaw doping unbelievable statement during an interview and I called her on that.

                      I didn’t ignore everything else the Government was doing to address the problem. I mentioned they had an ambitious but also insufficient plan, which I’ve already previously covered in more detail. As you very well know.

                      While the problem itself is complex, the statement was straightforward. Hence, all that is required is a yes or no answer and your reasoning for that. But no, all you could muster up was your personal opinion of me. And of course that’s playing the man and not the ball.

                      Now you have come up with this cock and bull I’m now replying too. And yet, still no answer on the topic at hand. But you have plenty to say about me and what you perceive to be my so-called MO.

                      Once again, you are playing the man and not the ball.

                      Talk about stonewalling and distracting when challenged. Nevertheless, a good example of the extent some will go to avoid answering. At least no one can say you’re not creative.

                      Care to try again?

                    • Incognito

                      First up, there’s no point engaging with your framing and answering your questions because they’re often pertinently wrong and/or binary choices.

                      There’s no personal abuse, only challenging the style & content of your often negative and one-sidedly critical as well as concerned & disappointed comments.

                      You often describe yourself as concerned & disappointed and that you’re only (!) expressing your concern. Thus, it’s fair to call you “concerned”.

                      You’ve also stated that you don’t appeal to the ignorant and only (!) “intelligent readers”. Thus, it’s fair to call out your patronising primus inter pares kind of ways and call you “intelligent”. You do consider yourself one of the “intelligent” ones, don’t you? If not, you must consider yourself “ignorant” in which case I have to correct the way I address you from now on.

                      You fail, deliberately or ignorantly, to acknowledge all-important context and only begrudgingly make a token effort when challenged.

                      You scream “personal attack” when challenged and “it’s not about me” or “play the ball, not he man”. How pathetic!

                      You dig in and double-up when challenged.

                      You seem desperate for agreement & approval.

                      You annoy the Hell out of other commenters here who are by all accounts very intelligent & reasonable people and self-declared Lefties …

                      So, we have established a pattern and a motive …

                    • The Chairman

                      Here we go again.

                      You persist to insist there is something wrong with asking whether or not you agree or disagree with the PM’s statement. As I continually keep having to explain to you, there isn’t.

                      The PM made a statement and you were asked whether or not you agree with that so while it is binary there is nothing wrong, odd or sinister in that.

                      To further strengthen your reasoning that there is something wrong, odd or sinister in that, you lie.

                      The full context of the interview was provided via the link and I didn’t ignore everything else as you dishonestly claimed. It was encompassed in my initial post.

                      Resorting to lies to win an argument shows you have no valid argument. It also tarnishes your credibility, highlighting you’re a liar.

                      Smearing me with your personal opinions of me is not challenging the style and content of my comment. It’s you firing opinionated potshots at me as a means to personally discredit me.

                      It’s known as playing the man and not the ball. You can challenge the style and content of my comment without having to resort to lying and injecting your flawed personal opinions of me.

                      While I have said I don’t appeal to the ignorant I never said I only appeal to intelligent readers as you incorrectly claimed. So again, you lie.

                      And no, when it comes to my own intelligence, I don’t consider myself to be above the norm.

                      I said intelligent readers will see through you playing the man and not the ball bullshit, the ignorant however will not. Hence, I don’t appeal to them. But that doesn’t mean one has to be super intelligent to see what’s going on.

                      What I’d like to see you correct is your lies, smears and constant playing the man. It’s not required to challenge me.

                      Unfortunately, you are showing you struggle with that. To date, it’s become your MO. Every reply from you contains this underhanded crap.

                      It’s totally fair to say I have concerns as I genuinely do. It’s when people add trolling to it that I have a problem with, as I’m not.

                      “You scream ‘personal attack’ when challenged and ‘it’s not about me’ or ‘play the ball, not he man’. How pathetic! “

                      No. What’s pathetic is that is all you can muster up when attempting to challenge me. As I’ve highlighted time and time again. Yet, it still hasn’t sunk in.

                      “You dig in and double-up when challenged”

                      No. I dig in and double up when you continually lie, smear, and play the man. I welcome you to challenge me on the issues but I’m challenging you to do so without the unnecessary underhanded crap. Which to date you have shown you are unable to do, thus persist with your bullshit.

                      “You seem desperate for agreement & approval”

                      No. That’s more of your opinionated bullshit. I welcome debate.

                      What people tend to get sick of is the kind of stupid to-and-fro you’ve dragged me into by making it all about me rather than the political subject at hand.

                      The only ones now partaking in this discussion are those wanting to make it about me. The political topic is becoming buried, thus genuine readers/commentators have quickly fallen off.

                      Which I assume you know, thus why you continue. It’s underhanded, distracts, thus turns genuine readers and commentators off, which seems to be your agenda here.

                      The only upside is it seems to have exposed the trolls who enjoy playing the man and not the ball.

                      All this unnecessary back and fourth yet we’ve yet to establish where you stand on the PM’s statement. Are you scared to take a stance on this issue?

                      It’s only natural I ruffle feathers here as some don’t take kindly to criticism of their own side. First reaction tends to be this must be a right winger as some struggle to fathom the notion of questioning and holding to account ones own side. But I don’t apologise for that as questioning and holding to account ones own side is part and parcel of a healthy democracy. And with the direction a number of policies this Labour led government is taking, they need a nudge to get back on a better path.

                      Therefore, if a number of us express our concerns and disappointment it may help to accomplish that. It’s far better than people remaining silent only to show their discontent at the polling both come next election.

                      As for establishing a pattern, your underhanded behaviour is becoming well established.

                  • Muttonbird

                    The chairman is a fake leftie. We’ve been through this before but he reserves all and every criticism for the Labour party. No-one else.

                    I’d be happy to drop the fake leftie call if the chairman posts just one positive comment about Labour and just one criticism of National.

                    I have never seen the chairman be critical of National, ever, and if he’s wondering why commenters don’t trust him then this is why.

                    • The Chairman

                      “The chairman is a fake leftie.”

                      Come and engage me in the issues I raise and you’ll see how wrong you are.

                      I’m here to try and help convince Labour (by pointing out their centrist flaws and relaying public feedback) to become left again.

                      I voted Green and recommended on here that more should in the run up to last election.

                      I support Unions, the living wage, and core benefit increases. Opposed the TPP. Oppose regressive taxes, PPPs asset sales etc

                      Support lowering the retirement age.

                      This all comes through in my comments and stances I take.

                      As for you never seeing me be critical of National, then you need to open your eyes. Of late, I’ve been highlighting how low they have lowered the bar.

                      So are you going to engage me on the issues I raise or are you going to continue to play the man and not the ball?

                • greywarshark

                  This is not your post Ch. (I think you are getting like the Cheshire cat with its disappearing form.) You don’t need to be concerned about me going after you or your concerns because I am not interested in running a tit for tat dialogue with you. You come here to stir up responses, an attention seeker, and I find that boring and your approach predictable.

                  This is Open Mike and a place for people to air their views about anything, almost. I like to see what is driving the commenters here. And what is behind the comment may be more important than the ‘concern’ itself. I admire the idealistic, and the knowledgable battlers, and those thinking through our culture trying to work out what our qualities are when the varnish flakes off.

                  Some are either direct RW or even hard LW which means they are thinking with only part of their brain, and not very hard either. Some appear to be thinking but adopt the rather world-weary superior patient explanatory approach. Some complain about the standards, the tone, the spelling, everything except the real concerns we should have. And others get on with thinking about our position and how we can get on our feet again, all of us.

                  • The Chairman

                    I never stated this was my post.

                    I welcome you to challenge my policy concerns. It’s the playing the man I asked you to cease. Yet you’re at it again. Talk about predictable.

                    I don’t come here to stir. And I tend to muster attention as I believe in what I say, can argue my stance and some can see I have valid points.

                    I’ve told you what is driving me to comment here. Yet you persist in forming and touting your own flawed opinions. What’s driving you to do that?

                    I had nothing to do with what Jacinda decided to say today and if I did I would have advised against it. She was the one that spouted the stupid line, I’m merely the one calling her on it. And for good reason. The alternative is not to do nothing, it’s to do more.

                    So unless you agree with her you should be siding with me calling for more to be done.

                    • In Vino

                      You had better think more carefully about how you do your thing, Chairman, because you have just decried Greywarshark’s good explanation as a personal attack. You seem to be failing to convince an awful lot of us.

                    • The Chairman

                      Clearly you missed his jab and the fact he’s playing the man and not the ball. He didn’t further address my policy concerns in that post.

  11. ianmac 11

    “Pulling her police-issued weapon from her bag, she loads the gun then reacts with speed, stepping forward and firing off three rounds, shooting the assailant in the chest and leg as he tries to fire back.”

    The assailant later died of his wounds.

    Sadly Trump will use this event to show that if teachers were armed they could prevent tragedies.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=12051248

    • Barfly 11.1

      Gun would have been loaded (magazine in) but not one in the chamber. IMO

    • Puckish Rogue 11.2

      https://www.washingtontimes.com/multimedia/collection/good-guy-gun-stopped-bad-guy-gun/?page=1

      “With tragic events such as the shooting of a bible study group at a church in Charleston, South Carolina, the stories of heroic self defense and lives saved by legal gun owners are often overlooked. Here are just a few stories of law-abiding citizens using guns to defend themselves against criminals.”

      Why arn’t more stories like this publicised? Does the msm not want to publish them and if not why not?

      • Crashcart 11.2.1

        Its probably because there are relatively few of them. Whilst a good guy with a gun stopping a bad guy with a gun is good news in general I have seen as many stories of those good guys actually screwing up and killing some poor innocent.

      • Gabby 11.2.2

        Possibly those stores are swamped by the other ones pucky. The law abiding citizens murdered by criminal legal gun owners.

      • reason 11.2.3

        Printing or pushing the tiny fraction of the the 100,000 people shot each year in the usa … such as the minimal amount of ‘successful’ self defense ones ….

        Would misrepresent the reality of gun violence in the usa

        From memory there are studies showing that getting a handgun or firearm for family ‘self defense’ ….. increases the chances of your family suffering a death. Presumably because guns are so successful in suicides.

        Out of the 30,000 odd gunshot deaths each year in the usa … around two thirds are suicides

        Also Many self defense and police shootings appear to be murder http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-36354206

        https://theundefeated.com/features/fivethirtyeight-breaks-down-the-more-than-33000-annual-u-s-gun-deaths/

  12. ianmac 12

    “Simon Wilson’s Northcote Notebook: Labour candidate ‘lives and breathes’ suburb.”
    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12051287

    Shanan Halbert Labour candidate for Northcote is much more credible than that other Nat chap.

    • Stunned Mullet 12.1

      Really ? Sounds like another fuckwit going by that interview.

      Pity the poor people of Northcote – giant douche or turd sandwich, who’s the Green candidate ?

  13. Rosemary McDonald 13

    Two protests by iwi in Wellington today…

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12051573

    ” Treaty Negotiations Minister Andrew Little has been angrily confronted by members of a Tauranga iwi who marched on Parliament this morning.

    The 300-person hīkoi led by Ngāi Te Rangi, from Tauranga, arrived at Parliament’s steps this morning.

    It was the latest in a series of protests sparked by the Government signing a Deed of Settlement with Pare Hauraki, a collective of 12 Hauraki iwi.”

    and….https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/103904724/hundreds-of-protesters-show-their-support-outside-the-supreme-court-in-wellington

    “Hundreds of people are protesting in Wellington in support of an Auckland iwi’s Supreme Court battle.

    The protesters gathered outside parliament on Tuesday morning before moving down towards the Supreme Court, which is hearing a land case between Ngāti Paoa and Marutūāhu.

    ​The piece of land is in an area which Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei claims mana whenua (territorial rights). The hearing is set down for two days.”

    Nothing on Natrad as yet….hopefully they are preparing an in depth report on both issues.

  14. John up North 14

    Here we go…………… crank up a business that produces waste along the way, get all the government support $$ possible and then have a cry that you need someone to help pay to “dispose” of the waste meanwhile bank a $15.7m 6mth profit ending December 2017.

    King Salmon farms Marlborough Sounds operation, sheesh next thing you know Rio Tinto will be wanting public funding to get rid of their waste too!

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/357367/thousand-tonnes-of-dead-fish-poses-problem-for-king-salmon

    • JC 14.1

      … next thing you know Rio Tinto will be wanting public funding to get rid of their waste too!

      https://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/news/features/102663052/tiwai-2-return-of-the-dreaded-dross

      “A $4 million package has been broadly agreed that will see the removal of the premix during the next two-and-half years. The Government and NZAS will carry three quarters of the costs and southern councils and landlords are divvying up the rest. Ratepayers, facing a combined $650,000 bill, aren’t doing cartwheels neither … “

    • savenz 14.2

      Shocking – good points from John up North and JC about corporate trougher’s say goodbye trougher’s and let someone else take over the business who can run it better!

      • greywarshark 14.2.1

        What? How can you people claim to have anything worthwhile to add to the running of this country when you come out with this sort of rubbish.

        The setting up of a fund for improving the way that NZ deals with trash – waste minimisation – and encouraging business to start doing it with grants is a step in the right direction. The first task for business is to do it and be profitable and pay back loans and labour, machinery and other costs. Doing things that are awkward and costly and unprofitable are not top priority. Even governments don’t necessarily do the right things so business can’t be the scapegoat.

        This sort of thing is excellent for government to assist with in partnership with the business paying more, but may be getting a small tax discount too. The work must be done right, the money must be spent mainly on the work and not just endless planning and high paid consultancy.

  15. indiana 15

    “I don’t support paying good teachers more.”

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=12051287

    In the article, the candidate refers to bringing up other teachers to a good equal level – but does that mean education department ignore high performers and recognise them?

  16. The Chairman 16

    A few quick questions.

    Should union membership be compulsory?

    Should it be similar to Kiwisaver – i.e. automatic enrollment with a provision allowing people to opt out?

    Should it remain as is?

    • Gosman 16.1

      Should membership of political parties be compulsory?

      If you answer no then think about the reasons as they likely apply to Union membership as well.

      • Crashcart 16.1.1

        I am not sure that your comparison is any good. Whilst I don’t think they should be compulsory, People can vote for different parties based upon policies they like or dislike and it may change from election to election. Unions merely exist to empowers workers in what is often a severely imbalanced relationship (employer/employee). Not too many work places you can flit around between unions because you like the employment terms one is fighting for more than another.

      • The Chairman 16.1.2

        “Should membership of political parties be compulsory?”

        As politics tends to encompass almost every facet of our lives, that’s not a bad notion.

        It would go hand in hand with compulsory voting, which is often suggested.

      • Stuart Munro 16.1.3

        Political party membership does not entail the same risk of dying as working for NZ’s shoddy employers.

    • Crashcart 16.2

      I think he second option is probably the most reasonable. You shouldn’t be able to force someone to associate if they don’t want to. However all workers in Unionised work places tend to benefit from their actions.

      It would probably be more helpful to level the playing field between unions and business. If Unions can prove that they are effective for their work forces then people will want to be members.

      • The Chairman 16.2.1

        “It would probably be more helpful to level the playing field between unions and business. If Unions can prove that they are effective for their work forces then people will want to be members.”

        The problem with that notion is unions tend to be more effective when they have large membership.

        • Crashcart 16.2.1.1

          Very true. I just think compulsory membership comes with a bunch of negative connotations which would empower those who fight against Unions as much as anything.

      • The Chairman 16.2.2

        “You shouldn’t be able to force someone to associate if they don’t want to.”

        Would having a referendum, thus a democratic mandate ease your concern with making it mandatory?

        • Crashcart 16.2.2.1

          Not really. The right to associate or not is not something I would be willing to give up in a referendum. To be fair though I did join the military so at that point gave up my right right to be a member of a union. Guess I am not morally consistent so take my opinion with a grain of salt.

    • indiana 16.3

      The problem with compulsory membership, is that when you want to leave because you disagree with the direction the union is taking you become labeled a scab worker. I’d join a union if I was completely satisfied that it was not affiliated to a political party. But I’m a real minority when it comes to having that view – so I disagree that union membership should be compulsory.

      • The Chairman 16.3.1

        People are generally labeled a scab when they continue to work when others are striking for better conditions.

        Would having a democratic mandate via referendum appease your disapproval of mandatory membership?

        • indiana 16.3.1.1

          Would having a democratic mandate via referendum appease your disapproval of mandatory membership?

          No. Even if there was a democratic mandate, I would always vote against it. I liken it back to my student days, when it was compulsory for me to pay fees to a union, that I go no benefit from, nor was there an option for me to opt out. Joining a union should always be personal choice and in my view it would be undemocratic if the general populace was required to participate in a referendum on this issue. I can only imagine that the UMR would write the loaded question for such a poll.

          • McFlock 16.3.1.1.1

            Got no benefit from – that you recognised.

            You’d have been happy to freeload off all the advances that existed because of that union, though.

          • The Chairman 16.3.1.1.2

            Referendums are far from being undemocratic.

            They are as most democratic option we have.

            • In Vino 16.3.1.1.2.1

              But referenda are basically incompatible with efficient Government. If asking the whole country to vote on every issue were practical, we would’nt need a Parliament.
              But you already know that, and are doing your usual stirring. We could follow Switzerland’s example, but most things there are still decided by Govt., not referenda. (Plural of referendum.)

              • The Chairman

                Now it is becoming obvious why you generally opt to play the man and not the ball.

                I advocate a more left direction and when you engage me in that, you show your true colours.

                Seems you put efficient Government before the will of the public And oppose unions working together (increasing their leverage) strengthening their potential to secure more on behalf of the workers they represent (re your other post at 16.4.1.1)

                “Referenda are basically incompatible with efficient Government”

                That is anti-democratic spin you’re spouting.

                Referendums tend to re-engage voters, are generally on one issue, thus are more clear at establishing the will of the people. Resulting in policy settings that are more durable. Therefore, increases efficiency over the long-term by avoiding dragged-out changes in direction going forward as administrations change.

                I wasn’t stirring or suggesting we don’t require a Parliament. I was highlighting referendums are the most democratic option we have.

                Moreover, we have a Parliament and a electoral system that also allows for referendums.

    • patricia bremner 16.4

      Education unions are by choice, membership has always been in the 90% range.

      • The Chairman 16.4.1

        Yes, and what a strong union they have. Shame many others can’t muster the same support.

        How do you feel about mandatory membership? Automatic enrollment, etc?

        Are you happy with the way things are? Or do you think they require strengthening via Government?

        Should unions be allowed to strike in support of others (unions) if they wish to lend support?

        • In Vino 16.4.1.1

          That last sentence is revealing. Chairman knows full well that this was used for union-bashing in the past, and is egging us on to advocate for it again.
          I suggest we ignore his dumb questions. They are not for the benefit of the Left.
          Over and out.

          • The Chairman 16.4.1.1.1

            Increasing their leverage, thus strengthening their potential to secure more on behalf of the workers they represent is not for the benefit of the Left? Are you for real, Vino?

            You must live on planet Key.

    • Cinny 16.5

      I do think it should be compulsory for all employers to ensure their employees are given union literature and information at the time of hiring, good info, brochures etc etc

      Are union fee still deducted via a companies payroll dept?
      That method allows an employer to discover exactly who belongs to a union, making it easy if they are anti-union to target union members.

      The question on an applic form… do you belong to a union?
      Used to be told to ditch any who had ticked the union box.
      If any asked about the question the stock standard reply was…. oh that’s just part of the ‘paperwork’ for payroll, no biggie.

      So I kinda feel it’s a private matter between you and the union for those reasons, until you absolutely have to tell your employer.

      Everyone should know about unions, crikey teach it at schools, part of ‘civics’ that would be a great starting point.

      So in answer to your question Chairman, I’m not sure, good thread btw

      • In Vino 16.5.1

        Don’t think you quite get the true Chairman, Cinny, as you have probably noticed.
        The problem with asking union members to pay voluntarily week by week is that some will forget; some will come on hard times and drop out for a while.. and some will try to exploit the system by paying only once every month, or whatever the limit is for losing your union coverage by not paying.
        If you forget to pay one week, should you instantly lose coverage?
        Easier nowadays with automatic direct credit, but those problems could still arise, and furthermore I would not trust the banks to keep secret from employers a list of union members in their firm.

      • The Chairman 16.5.2

        “Are union fee still deducted via a companies payroll dept?”

        Yes.

        Compulsory union membership would put an end to your concern re employers targeting union members.

        I think a move to automatic enrollment would be a good first step. Give it a few years and see what develops, if it helps to strengthen unions and workers conditions, pay etc… then we could leave it at that.

        However, if it failed to make vast improvements we could re-evaluate it from there and see if we require to take the next step. Putting the mandatory option up for referendum.

  17. Peroxide Blonde 17

    Leavers prepare their Brexit betrayal narrative
    UK Politics: Leavers demand everything from Brexit deal except their names on paper

    “You have to believe that people who have devoted their adult lives to the cause of EU exit would, on the brink of their dream’s orderly enactment, become immovable on the details of customs regimes that merited no mention before.

    I do not believe it. Even their language (“crazy”, “cretinous”) suggests the histrionics of a ham actor. Leavers demand everything from a Brexit deal except their names on the paper. ”

    From the Financial Times in the IT.
    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/world/uk/leavers-prepare-their-brexit-betrayal-narrative-1.3495100

  18. Cinny 18

    Convicted sex offender and Gloriavale cult leader ‘hopeful christian’ can no longer dictate his desires to his followers, he’s died.

    • In Vino 18.1

      Requiescat is enough. In Pace only if he is deserving. Who knows?

    • greywarshark 18.2

      But he didn’t go till he was in his 90s. Why leave when he had been able to create heaven on earth for himself.

  19. greywarshark 19

    I put a comment at 7.1 which falls into the bunch that could be called trivia but just sometimes it’s good not to think about Trump and RW and whether we can get stuff done in NZ in the next 3 years and soon enough to make a big difference.

    I found this intriguing thing about Lord of the Rings and Brisbane and linked to it above.

  20. Jenny 20

    “Gaza bleeds alone as liberals and progressives go mute”
    Ramzy Baroud May 2, 2018

    http://www.ramzybaroud.net/gazan-gandhis-gaza-bleeds-alone-as-liberals-and-progressives-go-mute/

    “Ramzy Baroud: bringing the voices of Palestine to NZ”
    Kia Ora Gaza May 8, 2018

    https://kiaoragaza.wordpress.com/2018/05/08/ramzy-baroud-bringing-the-voices-of-palestine-to-nz/

    ‘A horrific situation’: Dozens killed as US opens Jerusalem embassy
    Ramzy Baroud May 15, 2018

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/programs/the-world/2018-05-14/a-horrific-situation:-dozens-killed-as-us-opens/9760822

    For an authentic voice on the crisis in Palestine you won’t get anywhere else in New Zealand.

    Ramzy Baroud New Zealand Tour

    AUCKLAND: FRIDAY 18 MAY
    9:35am: Listen to 95bFM radio for Mikey Havoc’s live studio interview with Ramzy Baroud

    10:30am book signing event at UBIQ Auckland University Bookshop, 2 Alfred Street, Student Commons (off Princes Street, City.)

    AUCKLAND: SATURDAY 19 MAY
    Ramzy will speak at the Nakba Rally, 2pm Aotea Square, Queen St, CBD.

    AUCKLAND: SUNDAY 20 MAY
    Free public talk: 7pm Freemans Bay Community Hall, 52 Hepburn St, Auckland.

    HAMILTON: MONDAY 21 MAY
    Free public talk: 7pm: Wintec, Room A2.05, City Campus, Hamilton.

    Access via Gate 3 or Gate 2 on Tristram Street. Free parking.

    WELLINGTON: TUESDAY 22 MAY
    Book signing from 12pm to 1pm: Vic Books, Easterfield Building, 1 Kelburn Parade, Wellington 6012. enquiries@vicbooks.co.nz

    WELLINGTON: TUESDAY 22 MAY
    Evening event: 6pm Free Public talk: St Andrews on the Terrace, 30 The Terrace, Wellington City 6011. (Wellington event book sales by Vic Books)

    CHRISTCHURCH: WEDS 23 MAY
    Free public talk: 7pm Christchurch Cardboard Cathedral, 234 Hereford St, Christchurch 8011

    DUNEDIN: THURSDAY 24 MAY
    Free public talk: 5:15pm Burns 2 Lecture theatre, Ground Floor Arts Building, Albany Street, University of Otago.

  21. eco maori 21

    Good morning te Am show on 3.
    I feel sorry for the Markles because its quite hard getting use to fame the part that gets me is the sandflys using anything you say or do against you.
    The trickle down effect can happen if government don’t bow to big businesses lobbying. Look at the Dairy sector 10 years ago my salary was 50 G there were heaps of jobs national bowed to pressure and put the 90 day Claus in the employment contract act. Because the Farmers had no people skills and did not look after there workers now a worker can get fired with out any written reason how can one defend that.
    That clause and the government letting all the foreign workers displace the Kiwi workers and keep wages low a experience worker should get 70k minimum with out being a manager. The scrapping of the guarantee minimum 40 hours a week is – – – – – – to the worker has to travel to two different locations just to get enough to live maybe 3 jobs like me. Now you can not get a job and the wages are just enough to get by.
    In my view rase the minamim wage can the 90 day clause bring back the minamim 40 hour week.. Ka kite ano

    • eco maori 21.1

      Good evening Newshub I used the human rights commission to complain about the breach that the NZ police are doing to my right got no we’re.
      I tryed to use the information act to get info from a business I worked for made a complaint to the privacy commissioner they did not even respond to my emails – – – – Ka kite ano

  22. greywarshark 22

    In theory being able to trial new workers without a lot of hassle putting them off could be useful for both. A worker gets work experience and learns about the type of work and an employer gets a pair of hands at times of need. But nearly a quarter of a year? 90 days is too long, 60 would be more reasonable and the employer must have some input, talk to the worker about how they can improve, giving them some feedback, that’s not right.

    So I say 60 days with smartening up and it could work for people.
    Also people need to have set hours and times, and be able to rely on those, and be able to rotate their roster in agreement with employer. That wouldn’t be so hard for employers and be helpful and kinder to workers. Eco maori talks about the 3 jobs he has to co-ordinate, which needs transport, and certainty of times and days.

    We might not be able to get 40 hours, but if NZ employers are so pathetic that they have to be spoon fed with all sort of soft-landing advantages, then they had better have training and refresher courses for them to learn to do better. Jobs with high responsibility for effectiveness like a teacher or someone medical have to keep themselves sharp, and I think NZ business and management should do the same.

    .

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