Open Mike 15/09/2018

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 15th, 2018 - 255 comments
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255 comments on “Open Mike 15/09/2018”

  1. Jenny 1

    Tired of reading no nothing posts on Syria that take their lead from Ron Paul, or from cynical smart-alec know-it-all comedians and conspiracy theorists?

    How about, just for a change, something from a Syrian perspective?

    Leila Al Shami blogs on popular struggles, human rights and social justice issues, Here. Al Shami also co-authored with Robin Yassin-Kassab Burning Country: Syrians in Revolution and War.

    Idlib and the left
    Leila Al=Shami – Leila’s blog, September 14, 2018

    On Saturday regime and Russian airstrikes intensified on Idlib in what appears to be a prelude to the long anticipated campaign to regain control of the province.

    Only a day before, thousands of Syrian men, women and children took the streets in over 120 cities towns and villages across the remaining liberated areas under the slogan ‘resistance is our choice’.

    They were demonstrating for their lives. Idlib is now home to three million people, a third of whom are children. Of the current population, over half have been displaced, or forcibly evacuated, to the province from elsewhere. Their options for fleeing the assault are limited. Borders are closed and there are no safe-zones left. They don’t want to be forcibly displaced from their homes. At the protests many held signs rejecting recent calls by UN envoy Staffan de Mistura to evacuate civilians to regime-controlled areas, where they could disappear into torture chambers or face forced conscription, as has happened to others before them. ‘Reconciliation’ in the Syrian context means a return to subjugation, humiliation and tyranny.

    Through signs and chants, the aim of the protests was clear: to prevent an assault by the regime and its backers, to show the world that there are civilians in Idlib whose lives are now under threat, and to affirm that they continue to refuse Assad’s rule.As-shaab yurid isqat al nizam(the people want the downfall of the regime) rang through the crowds, reminiscent of the early days of the uprising. They were not only protesting domestic fascism, but foreign imperialisms too – those of Russia and Iran – which have backed the dictator in his campaign to wipe out domestic opposition…….

    • Ed 1.1

      Cockburn and Fisk disagree with you.
      They are reputable independent journalists.
      The headchopping jihadis aren’t a group I have any intention of supporting.

      • Jenny 1.1.1

        Kia ora Ed.

        You obviously haven’t bothered to read the testimony of actual Syrians, that I provided in the link at the beginning of this thread. Instead putting your faith in the word of ‘Western Experts’, Patrick Cockburn and Robert Fisk.
        Patrick Cockburn an isolated ivory tower intellectual, who continually regurgitates Assad regime and RT propaganda without links, or acknowledgment to his source material.

        And Robert Fisk a high profile Westerner who is a long time fixture in Lebanese ruling circles, in which opposition to Lebanon’s, Hez Bollah, (An Assad ally), is incompatible with his position. And so is highly compromised.

        The following is a well moderated debate between a well informed ‘Left’ Assad apologist, and between actual Syrian Leftists. Where both sides get a fair hearing.

        I recommend it

        • Ed 1.1.1.1

          Kia ora Jenny

          Can’t listen now. Insufficient data….
          But I shall.
          Then get back to you.
          OK?

          • Jenny 1.1.1.1.1

            You might like this too.

            In answer to the question posed by many Assad apologists, What if the opposition won the war?

            Wouldn’t they be worse than Assad?

            Check it out.

            • Ed 1.1.1.1.1.1

              😊

              • In Vino

                Jenny, I admire your consistency, but I fear that the USA/Saudi Arabia is again destabilising the area for its own interests, and that there is good reason to be wary of the groups that the USA/SA is backing. If the USA interferes, then why should the Russians stay out?

          • Jenny 1.1.1.1.2

            Ed 1.1.1.1
            15 September 2018 at 3:28 pm
            Kia ora Jenny

            Can’t listen now. Insufficient data….
            But I shall.
            Then get back to you.
            OK?

            Still waiting…..

      • Jenny 1.1.2

        Ed 1.1
        15 September 2018 at 12:31 pm
        Cockburn and Fisk disagree with you.
        They are reputable independent journalists…..

        Like you, Cockburn and Fisk will have to answer to their consciences.

        In the era of the internet, the world is a global village, there is no excuse for your, (and their), wilful ignorance.

        I have spoon fed you evidence of the atrocities and genocide being carried out by the Assad regime, but you refuse to look. You don’t even try to deny this evidence, or attempt to explain it away, or any other defence of your position. You simply turn away and refuse to look, deliberately choosing willful ignorance.

        Your’s, (and others here), willful ignorance, reminds me of a an old newsreel I once watched, filmed after the liberation of Auschwitz by the American forces. The Americans rounded up the German townsfolk from the village of the same name, and forced them to walk past the massed piles of rotting corpses of the men women and children. The newsreel clearly shows many of the people of the village shielding their eyes with their hands (just as you have done), so that they didn’t have to acknowledge the atrocity that they had been denying had been going on in their midst for years.

        I have provided you a video of the people of liberated Idlib going about their daily lives as best they can. These are the people you dismiss as “headchopping jihadis” to justify your support for their extermination.

        You clearly will not be satisfied until Idlib resembles Homs or Eastern Alleppo, and the free citizens of Idlib in the video lie dead under the rubble. And just as you and Bill and Mike Smith have done for Homs and Eastern Alleppo.
        And just like the people of the town of Auschwitz did, you will simply ignore the extermination of the people of Idlib, just as you have simply ignored and glossed over all the other atrocities committed by the fascist Assad regime.

        • Ed 1.1.2.1

          It would appear many in Aleppo are a lot happier than before.
          It’s not really as simple as you make out.

          “During the horrendous siege at the hands of criminals that lasted four years, this second-largest and prosperous city of Syria was deprived of basic necessities,” the patriarch said. “You lacked water, food, fuel and electricity. All this happened under the eyes of the ‘civilized’ world.’”
          “You and hundreds of thousands of civilians under the ruling of the legitimate Syrian government were forgotten, abandoned even manipulated by those opportunistic geo-politicians of our present time,” he said.
          In December 2016, the Syrian army retook control of almost the entire city of Aleppo. The city had been split between government and rebel control since 2012.
          “Aleppo has returned, and Syria will return to its previous glory, and even more beautiful, because there are many civil and spiritual officials who felt the duty of their responsibilities to serve … with integrity and honesty,” Patriarch Younan said.

          http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/news/2018/09/11/syriac-patriarch-celebrates-restored-cathedral-our-people-have-overcome/

  2. AsleepWhileWalking 2

    Lehman collapsed a decade ago today.

    Here’s what one of the smart guys is saying about the financial system as it stands today

    Now, a decade later, the experts once again agree that it’s all rainbows and buttercups.

    They believe they fixed a problem caused by too much bad debt by facilitating record levels of even worse debt.

    They believe they fixed a problem caused by too much money in the system by injecting trillions of dollars of new money into the system.

    They believe they fixed a problem caused by artificially low interest rates by slashing interest rates to the lowest levels we’ve ever seen in all of human history.

    They also seem to believe that this time will somehow be different.

    Frankly it seems a bit… oh, what’s the word… INSANE… to try the same thing over and over and expect different results.

    To your freedom,
    Simon Black,
    Founder, SovereignMan.com

    • gsays 2.1

      For some reason I find this, Enron and the gfc fascinating.
      Thoroughly recommend ‘All the devils are here’ and ‘Smartest guys in the room’ by Bethany Mclean,
      ‘ The big sport’ and ‘Liars poker’ by Michael Lewis.
      ‘Too big to fail’ by Andrew Sorkin.

  3. James 3

    Reading another blog which linked to an interesting article on Derek Handley – our new hired / fired CTO.

    “About four years ago, Handley was shocked to find he had spent too many days outside New Zealand and had lost his permanent residence status and with it the chance to become a citizen. Handley’s attempts to regain eligibility for citizenship languished in the system until January when his citizenship application was approved.“

    Given the dodgy CTO appointment will be interesting to see if anyone ask how he got his citizenship ?

    • Enough is Enough 3.1

      There are a few unanswered questions that the Prime Minister needs to front up to next week.

      That is certainly one of them. Why was he given special treatment by the government?

    • AsleepWhileWalking 3.2

      Wow. Good find James!

    • Chuck 3.3

      Maybe just a coincidence?

      However, its also been pointed out that Jacinda was again pretty lazy with the truth. when Jacinda removed Curran from cabinet she said Handley was still a candidate for the CTO position.

      “Ardern revealed that Handley is still in the hunt for the CTO position in her statement on Curran’s demotion.”

      http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL1808/S00129/ardern-sacks-curran-from-cabinet-over-second-diary-flip-flop.htm

      Hadley yesterday said he was offered and accepted the CTO position a month ago.

      Jacinda announced the Curran sacking from Cabinet on the 24 August. Yet Hadley confirmed yesterday he was offered and accepted the CTO position on the 14 August.

      Hadley was offered and had accepted the job. Jacinda said he was “still in the hunt” despite knowing he had the job. Why the lie???

      No wonder Jacinda was not keen to send Curran to the back benches…there is more to come on this saga.

    • veutoviper 3.4

      James, I don’t know which blog you read the quote on, but it is actually a direct quote from an article in The Listener back in March 2018 – and which goes into Handley’s citizenship status quite openly in a publicly available publication.

      Here is a link to the full article:
      https://www.noted.co.nz/currently/profiles/derek-handley-talks-trump-business-and-coming-home/

      I am going to quote extensively from the article as I believe that some of the details in the article, including Handley’s answers to some questions in this interview back in March 2018, are very relevant to the action that has now been taken and made public in the last day or so in relation to the CTO position and the compensation paid out to him. (Note: I have added a Q in front of questions to make these clear as questions asked by the interviewer.)

      First, in relation to his NZ citizenship:

      “[Handley] was born in Hong Kong in 1978. His father, John, is a Scotsman; his mother, Latifa, is of Chinese, Indian and Malay ethnicity, but after China’s crackdown on protesters in Tiananmen Square in 1989, the family decided to move to New Zealand before the 1997 handover of Hong Kong to Chinese control.”

      “… He travelled the world from home bases in both New Zealand and the US on a British passport, thanks to his father’s citizenship, and he had permanent residence here; his Kiwi wife, Maya, and their now five-year-old son, Finn, were both New Zealand citizens. Finn, born in the US, also holds US citizenship.”

      “… About four years ago, Handley was shocked to find he had spent too many days outside New Zealand and had lost his permanent residence status and with it the chance to become a citizen. Handley’s attempts to regain eligibility for citizenship languished in the system until January when his citizenship application was approved.

      Q How does a savvy businessman get into this sort of bind?

      When I was living here all the time and had permanent-resident status, it didn’t occur to me. I thought it was a technicality. But somewhere along the line, going overseas to build up my businesses, I lost the right to become a citizen. I spent years trying to figure out how to get my permanent residency back so I could become a citizen. It’s important to me that I am a New Zealander. I am here for 100-plus days a year and I have never really been away from New Zealand for more than three months at a time, but that didn’t play into the maths required to regain that citizenship qualification. When I applied, it went round and round in circles.

      Q Do you think this is tied to the controversial decision to fast-track citizenship to US billionaire and Trump supporter Peter Thiel, even though he had never lived in New Zealand and had visited for only 12 days?

      Definitely. It became dynamite, but then the government changed and in its first month, this was done. My last resort would have been to wait for five years after I came back to apply. I am super happy and so is my son. He said, “Dad, you are going to be just like us”, because in our family we have two black [NZ] passports and one red [British] one.

      Also , from earlier in the article:

      “So even though he’s walked the Kiwi talk on the world stage, it was only on the last day of February [2018], at the Auckland Town Hall, that Handley affirmed allegiance to the Queen and became a New Zealand citizen.”

      The article also covers Handley’s strong general desire to return to NZ which is relevant to what has now been revealed re the CTO position. In other words, it appears that Handley wanted to return to NZ and intended to do so next year, and this was not just to take up the CTO position.

      “Q Has Donald Trump’s presidency entered your thinking about returning to New Zealand for good?

      “Yes, it is one of the nails in the coffin leading to us coming home. It’s not just Trump: there are lots of problems there, guns being just one of them. Racism is still a huge issue and the healthcare system makes no sense. These problems would exist whether Trump was there or not.

      “Q Where do you live in the US?

      “We live in a hamlet called Halcottsville in upstate New York. It has about 100 people and that has taught me a lot about community. There are people from several generations who have always lived there, and whatever grooves or grudges they have remain. Some are accepting of new people; some are not. We moved there from Brooklyn in July. We wanted to spend more time at our house there before moving home to New Zealand next year. [MY BOLD]

      “Q Do you have any reservations about returning to New Zealand?

      “I land at Auckland Airport and cry – with happiness. Increasingly, we have all felt like that and so we are coming home. We can always be a bit bolder about how we shape New Zealand for ourselves and put New Zealand on the world stage.

      “Q What will you be doing?

      “Whatever I do long term, it will have a heavy component of service. Not necessarily public service but working for some sort of entity that is working on society and the issues we face. I am already involved via my foundation and the collaboration with Splice and through supporting social enterprises such as Eat My Lunch.”

      Thanks, James for you comment and that quote because I did not see that article previously and I think it is very relevant to any discussion on Handley and the CTO position situation.

      • KJT 3.4.1

        Handley, unlike Theil, sounds like he is an asset to New Zealand.

        Several people I know, work outside NZ. They have had difficulties with residency for citizenship, despite paying NZ taxes on their earnings, and having their family home in New Zealand.

        The same rules should apply for residency for citizenship, as for tax residency.

        • veutoviper 3.4.1.1

          I fully agree that Handley is an asset to NZ, KJT – unlike Theil and his ilk.

          I also think his long residency here etc fully qualified for special consideration and the granting of citizenship.

          As for the points raised by Chuck above, these were also discussed in the Kiwiblog post this morning (- we all know where James and Chuck have been this morning!) The points re the discrepancy between the PM’s comments on 24 August and what has now been claimed – ie that Handley had been offered and accepted the CTO position a week or so before that date – are extremely disturbing IMO.

          At this stage, I don’t accept the claims that Ardern was lying on 24 August. My instincts are that it is yet another case of lack of transparency on the part of someone else – by not keeping the PM fully informed via No Surprises, for example. Time will tell as it will come out.

          • Dennis Frank 3.4.1.1.1

            Best gloss we can put on it is typical Labour incompetence. However I will say something on behalf of Curran: if I were minister I’d want to pick Handley too, and I’d consider it an elementary precaution to get a sense of where his head is at re the CTO job. If current cabinet rules prevent a minister doing so, they must be changed! However nobody here or in the media have cited any such rule to claim she broke it! We’re surrounded by dunces.

            • veutoviper 3.4.1.1.1.1

              Just for you Dennis – https://quoteinvestigator.com/2010/05/17/remain-silent/

              I will expand in more detail sometime soon.

            • Graeme 3.4.1.1.1.2

              There seems to be a bit (maybe a lot) of animosity towards Handley from some in the New Zealand business community. A piece in granny today by Brian Gaynor had this comment

              “Many successful people have been involved in failed companies but the problem with Handley is that Snakk Media is his second unsuccessful NZX listing. In 2001, he listed Feverpitch International, which planned to establish a successful on-line betting business.

              It suffered huge losses and was unable to develop a viable business model. In 2003 Feverpitch was used as the backdoor listing vehicle for KidiCorp, the childcare centre operator.

              Two unsuccessful NZX companies is one too many and his offer and acceptance of the country’s CTO position was bizarre, although this has now been terminated.”

              https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=12125335

          • Chuck 3.4.1.1.2

            “My instincts are that it is yet another case of lack of transparency on the part of someone else”

            Then all roads lead back to Curren. It could not have gone through the PM’s office if you are correct veutoviper. The staff there are Arderns most trusted.

            However, I think Ardern has been a lot more involved than she is currently letting on.

            “Curran says the chief technology officer will be accountable to the prime minister and to herself.”

            https://billbennett.co.nz/chief-technology-officer/

            And dinner dates with Jacinda / Clark and Derek ??

            • veutoviper 3.4.1.1.2.1

              I am in the middle of researching the whole background on this CTO position; who it was supposed to report to; who was responsible for the recruitment process;, who was supposed to make the final decision and appointment (note my careful wording!); and what actually happened if I can find anything public on this at this stage. In other words, was the established process for this whole issue followed?

              I have found quite a lot of the basic documents on the above (ie this is the stuff you won’t find in media reports etc, but is deep in various govt websites my old familiar hunting grounds) but I have to go out for a couple of hours. So hope to put something together later today …

              Just a few quick pointers/questions in relation to this, before I must rush out – not in any particular order or logical sequence.

              It appears that an appointment was made in mid August from Handley’s statement a few days ago (13 Aug), as this appears to be confirmed by the settlement made with Handley.

              Quite when the settlement was made is not clear, however – eg whether it was before or after Curran resigned on 7 Sept and Megan Woods took over. If the latter, then Woods has acted quickly and decisively (presumably in conjunction with the PM and Cabinet). If prior, ????

              What did Ardern (and the rest of Cabinet) know about this actual appointment and when.

              If Ardern (and the rest of Cabinet) were kept in the dark about this appointment and/or settlement until it came out this week, what disciplinary action is available to them?

              I am not familiar with the Labour Party internal disciplinary rules etc. But IF the above situation (PM etc kept in the dark) was the case and related to a Labour MP who is no longer a Minister, are there any disciplinary steps that can be taken? – or are the PM’s hands tied IF the person is an electorate MP? How does this relate to the current Electoral Act? Would the Electoral (Integrity) Amendment Bill provisions currently before the House be of any help or vice versus in such a situation?

              These and many other questions remain to be answered as the sand slips through the hourglass in the latest version of Days of Our Lives …

              LOL – the last is probably a total misquote on my part!

        • alwyn 3.4.1.2

          Given his comments about having only been in New Zealand for about 100 days/year I doubt if he had a tax residency status in New Zealand.
          He was very unlikely to have been paying taxes here on all his income.
          No reason why he should of course. However I doubt he was in the same situation as the people you are talking about.

          • RedLogix 3.4.1.2.1

            Even though I haven’t worked in NZ for many years, I am still a tax resident in NZ.

            The rules are not as simple as most people imagine.

        • James 3.4.1.3

          Theil? Perhaps a far better parallel would be Bill Leu.

          Granted special citizenship under labour.

          And how well that worked out.

          https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10539400

      • veutoviper 3.4.2

        James – I should have added – “even if the blog concerned was/is Kiwiblog this morning.” LOL

      • rightly or wrongly 3.4.3

        Interesting about his plans to move to NZ dating from 2017.

        A question I would pose to anyone seeking ex-Minister Curran’s gmails via the OIA is how far back do her gmail correspondence with Handley go?

        And if she had him earmarked for this position in 2017 (Which hadn’t been created yet) what does this say about the sham of a process of seeking candidates for the position?

        I thought that merit based appointments were the best practice process, not the old nod and wink rort of yesteryear.

    • Sacha 3.5

      If you want to quote something, James, please link to it as well.

    • Ed 3.6

      James is a right wing troll on a left wing site.

      • Ngungukai 3.6.1

        James is on the Natzi’s payroll ?

      • veutoviper 3.6.2

        Can’t resist – Ed is a very left wing troll on a left wing site. Bye.

        • Macro 3.6.2.1

          Indeed! I was about to say the same. But sometimes he is so left of left that he moves almost full circle to alt right! Sad really.

        • Ed 3.6.2.2

          Yes Blairites do describe Corbyn as extreme left, forgetting it is they who moved to the right in the 1990s.
          Most policies I advocate for would be par for the course in a 1970s Labour platform.
          If not wanting war with Russia and advocating for an end to neoliberalism is extreme left by your definition, so be it.

        • Ed 3.6.2.3

          Liz Kendall Calls Jeremy Corbyn extreme left.
          The Daily Mail calls Jeremy Corbyn extreme left.

      • James 3.6.3

        And by attacking the person and making zero comment on the thread you are they very definition of a troll.

        You are a funny wee man Ed.

        • Muttonbird 3.6.3.1

          Not linking is the behaviour of a troll. I suspect you didn’t link because it came from you know where.

          Wayne has answered Farrar’s Slater’s your concerns over Handley, btw.

    • Wayne 3.7

      Whatever anyone might say about Derek, he is basically a New Zealander. I know him well enough to know that. Any default on his part over his residency will be technical. It is essentially a case of someone being born outside NZ, coming here as a child, but their parents not bothering to get citizenship and relying on the PR stamps in their passport.

      Should he have rectified this in the past, probably, but it is a mistake that many people in his situation have made. In my experience, generally the authorities (Immigration and Internal Affairs) are reasonably good in fixing these things up.

      • Sacha 3.7.1

        Especially when he has a spouse and child who are already NZ citizens, yes. Total beat-up.

        • Muttonbird 3.7.1.1

          It’s just sad that apparently a very good candidate for the job has been screwed over by the hysterical National Party.

          • James 3.7.1.1.1

            You spelt “incompetent Labour Party” wrong.

            • Muttonbird 3.7.1.1.1.1

              Not at all. National disrupted what would have been a very good appointment by all accounts, just for the sake of petty politicking.

              Sad that NZ misses out because of such behaviour.

              Bear in mind the SSC hasn’t covered themselves in glory recently with the bungling of Martin Matthew’s appointment and then resignation behind closed doors.

              Best not to leave appointments to them in future.

    • cleangreen 3.8

      Mates rates, James?

      Everything has a price in today’s neo-liberal society eh???
      I know others who cant get citizenship or even a work permit for a NZ citizens partner now even under the new ‘Labour government,’

      But I wager one of those had ‘money and sway’ – i bet he could get his partner a work permit eh?

      Everything has it’s price James.

  4. Morrissey 4

    If the problem of militant ignorance is not addressed, foolish and
    unlettered trolls will reduce this site to the level of Whale Oil Beef Hooked.

    Last night in the course of a rather heated exchange about the Skripal poisoning controversy, I took the opportunity to counsel one Stuart Munro about his gross and embarrassing lack of knowledge. I advised him to take some time off reposting shoddy items from frivolous U.K. government relay stations like the Grauniad and Telegraph and to actually read something in depth. I suggested a couple of world-renowned scholars of unimpeachable integrity. Far from being grateful for that advice, Mr Munro angrily replied:

    And none of your bullshit sites please.”

    /paranoia-bullshit-and-ordinary-lives/#comment-1524823

    The “bullshit sites” he rejected were…. Noam Chomsky and Mark Curtis.

    “Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”—Martin Luther King, Jr.

    • Jenny 4.1

      “Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”—Martin Luther King, Jr.

      Indeed

      • Jenny 4.1.1

        There is no excuse for ignorance.

        I have said it many times Morrissey

        Don’t support fascism.

        It really shouldn’t have to be said.

    • stunned Mullet 4.2

      I wasn’t aware that the late Dr King was familiar with your ‘work’ Morrissey.

    • Chris T 4.3

      Not sure why you would consider an academic from the US as a more valid source of information than journalists in the UK, where the crime actually happened who have direct contact and sources within the investigation, but if you think they are better, good for you

    • Stuart Munro 4.4

      Yes – it is incredibly arrogant of you.

      You asserted that England funds ISIS – a claim that you have not substantiated.

      A barefaced lie one presumes. You didn’t link anything.

      Let’s see your evidence – real evidence, if you have any.

      Barefaced lying is the standard you set, and we understand of course that your position is untenable without it.

      We are to believe you without evidence because the evidence does not support you.

      • Bill 4.4.1

        There was a very good Guardian piece that laid out some of the funding and support the UK government and contractors pumped into Syria on behalf of Jihadists.

        There was a Panorama investigative piece that did likewise with funding for police in non-government areas, that received bugger all oversight that wound up with Al Nusra.

        There is also (of course) the huge amount western taxpayers monies given to the Al Nusra affiliated White Helmets (Johnston as foreign sec by passed the usual funding channels on some of that).

        You might want to split hairs and argue that Al Nusra isn’t ISIS and there is no crossover between the two and suggest there are “good” headchoppers and “bad” headchoppers?

        I’ll come back to this comment and embed some relevant links if the google search function is beyond you.

        There you go. And here’s the previous post two of those links came from 😉

        • Stuart Munro 4.4.1.1

          “that Al Nusra isn’t ISIS”

          It isn’t.

          “and there is no crossover between the two”

          Never suggested it.

          “and suggest there are “good” headchoppers and “bad” headchoppers?”

          Ah no – that would be your entirely intellectually dishonest straw man.

          Like your implicit assumption that because SOME Al Nusra members had ISIS affiliation, ALL Al Nusra are ISIS. A necessary sleight of mind to support the mass bombing and gassing of civilians that characterizes the Assad/Russia approach to civic nationalism.

          I can no doubt find such links with google, but the outrageous claim lies with Morrisey the Liar, it is for him to substantiate it.

          • Bill 4.4.1.1.1

            You saying I support the mass bombing and gassing of civilians? Jesus wept.

            Look. Read the fucking links that have been provided. Or don’t.

            • Stuart Munro 4.4.1.1.1.1

              Your White Helmet link doesn’t pass the sniff test.

              The two before it just show the usual Tory incompetence was partially captured, in the first instance by extremely dodgy commercial operators, and secondly by extremists.

              This is no different to the capture of US logistical funding in Afghanistan – trucking companies paying off the Taliban so their vehicles won’t be hit – but on a much smaller scale.

              It was not the UK government’s design, and when they learned of it, they acted to stop it.

    • Ed 4.5

      Totally agree Morrissey

    • Stuart Munro 4.6

      Still waiting for your evidence, Morrisey the Liar.

      • Ed 4.6.1

        Do you want to bomb Syria?

        • Jenny 4.6.1.1

          The question posed is really for you Ed.

          Do you want to bomb Syria?

          To be specific; Do you want to bomb Idlib?

          • Jenny 4.6.1.1.1

            Of course Ed will never answer that question.

            Just as he and every single pro-Assad apologist here have repeatedly refused to answer this question.

            Who did this?

            And is it not evidence of genocide?

          • Ed 4.6.1.1.2

            I want Idlib to be liberated from the foreign headchopping Jihadis who presently occupy it..

            As Saigon was liberated in 1975
            As Paris was liberated in 1944.

            • McFlock 4.6.1.1.2.1

              What makes you think that Warsaw or Berlin wouldn’t be more realistic analogies?

            • Jenny 4.6.1.1.2.2

              Ed 4.6.1.1.2
              15 September 2018 at 3:54 pm
              I want Idlib to be liberated from the foreign headchopping Jihadis who presently occupy it..

              Really?

              I think you need to watch this video Ed. Tell us what you think.

              But again, I know you won’t.

              You seem determined to remain ignorant.

        • Stuart Munro 4.6.1.2

          I’d quite like people to stop bombing Syria, Ed.

          Due process, if the anti-Assad forces were indeed the headchoppers you are wont to claim they are, would be to establish this in court, not bomb or gas them and their wives and children.

          No-one bombing civilians has much credibility for me, whatever their excuses may be.

          • Ed 4.6.1.2.1

            From memory The Nazis weren’t in court until they were first defeated in battle….

            • Stuart Munro 4.6.1.2.1.1

              There is still hope for the free citizens of Syria, that they will throw off their hereditary military dictator and his foreign thugs, and build a better society.

              But they’re a little out-gunned, and their desire to find divine help is normal among populations facing extinction at the hands of a murderous tyrant. The Yemenis are no doubt sending up plenty of prayers too.

              • Ed

                You should get over to Idlib and join your Jihadi mates.
                Like them, you’ve been completely brainwashed.

                • Stuart Munro

                  No Ed, I don’t know them from a bar of soap.

                  But you have certainly swallowed the koolaid of the war criminals who are murdering them.

                  • Ed

                    The Russian will be terrified.
                    You with your ISIS mates on one front and Stuart in his tin hat alongside his neoNazi Ukrainian allies attacking the Donbass.
                    What could possibly go wrong?

                    • Stuart Munro

                      But they won’t be terrified of you.

                      Loyal Ed, like Boxer, will support the pigs until they sell him for more whiskey.

                    • Ed

                      Did you know the Soviet Union ended 30 years ago?You need to become a lot more informed on geopolitics.
                      Like Morrissey yesterday, I despair at reading your rabid ranting.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Really? How did they process go? Did they become a republic through ballots? Revolution? Foreign invasion? Was Yeltsin standing on a tank the beginning or the end? What became of the party insiders? Were they tried, or did they morph seamlessly into oligarchs?

                • Jenny

                  I wouldn’t say that you have been brainwashed Ed.

                  My guess is that you are motivated by racism and islamaphobia.

                  Your racist depiction of all opposition as “headchoppers” is dispicable and and unjust.

                  The is the same sort of demonisation of a religion that the German nazis used to cast the Jews as sub-human to prepare the ground for the Holocaust.

                  Like the German nazis it is your wilful hatred of Moslems that fuels your refusal to see them as human beings and why you support the extermination policies of the fascist regime of Bashar Assad.

                  I asked you whether you support the bombing of Idlib. As is usual with regime apoligists here, you wouldn’t give a straight answer. In light of the fact that you refuse to answer this simple question, I have to conclude that the fact of the matter is that you do support the genocide about to be visited on the people of Idlib. You are just too cowardly to admit to it openly.

                  • Ed

                    Bad guess Jenny.

                    Is Patrick Cockburn racist and islamaphobic?
                    Is Robert Fisk racist and islamaphobic?
                    Is George Galloway racist and islamaphobic?
                    Is Jonathan Cook racist and islamaphobic?
                    Is John Pilger racist and islamaphobic?
                    Is Eva Bartlett racist and islamaphobic?

                    Well, as all I’m doing is sharing their views, I would say you have been brainwashed.

                    • Jenny

                      Some may have different motives, and various levels of ignorance.

                      But they all play to the racist pews.

                    • Jenny

                      Just sharing the view of others?

                      You might be better served Ed, if you started thinking for yourself. Or at least start looking at some sources outside the pro-Assad echo chamber.

                      As for the list of worthies you slavishly and unthinking genuflect to.

                      Let’s start with the last name on that list, self titled “independent journalist” RT correspondent Eva Bartlett.

                      All the other worthies on your list unfailingly reference Bartlett as their main source, (as do you), despite Bartlett never leaving the care of regime minders, and being totally reliant on interpreters, and who in her visits to Syria rarely strays far from her hotel in Damascus.

                      Compare RT’s Eva Bartlett to CNN’s Clarissa Ward a reporter who risks her life to get the story, and who speaks Arabic, (Bartlet doesn’t).

                      The truth about Syria
                      Undercover behind rebel lines
                      Clarissa Ward – CNN, March 18, 2016

                    • Jenny

                      As to all the other worthies on your list, I think that they are guilty of laziness and hubris.

                      And yes, especially in the case of Patrick Cockburn, racism and Islamophobia.

                    • Ed

                      To call Galloway Islamophobic shows your total and wilful ignorance.

                    • Jenny

                      Ed by conflating what I said, shows how desperate you are getting in trying to defend your brutal pro-bombing position.

                      I did not call Galloway an Islamophobe. I said Pactrick Cockburn is.

                      What I actually said, of the rest of your list of worthies, is, “Some may have different motives, and various levels of ignorance…..”

                      In the cases of Fisk and Galloway, both have long time links to the ruling elites in both Syria and Lebanon and have enjoyed their patronage.

                      In the case of John Pilger, I conclude that he has not done his research and is just going along with the crowd. In this Pilger has displayed an uncharacteristic laziness and lack of intellectual and journalistic rigour. (Something I am sure, that will come back to haunt him).

                      The other name you dropped was Johnathon Cook.

                      I am afraid you have got me there. I have no idea what Cook’s motives are.

                      It is notable that you have left off your list of worthy Assad apologists the most strident and vocal of them all, Noam Chomsky.

                      As you well know Ed, of all the Left Assad apologists, Noam Chomsky as well as being the most prominent, has also been the one whose claims have been most commonly challenged and debunked.

                    • Ed

                      “And yes, especially in the case of Patrick Cockburn, racism and Islomophobia.”

                      Especially is the key word here.
                      Which means you think all of them are.

                    • Jenny

                      I think all of them play to the racist and Islamophobic gallery. Either wittingly, or unwittingly. “Especially” Patrick Cockburn.

                      I made that point very clearly.

                      I notice you haven’t disputed that.

                      Nit picking pedantry to impute that I accused them all of being conscious Islamophobic racists, doesn’t do your Argument any favours. It just further underlines how keen you are to make excuses for committing mass murder.

                    • Ed

                      Jenny – if I don’t reply, it does not mean I don’t dispute your views.
                      It means I’ve lost interest in discussing the subject with you.

            • McFlock 4.6.1.2.1.2

              And the Soviet judge at Nuremberg had to be persuaded that evidence mattered and verdicts could be something other than “guilty – death penalty”.

              • adam

                So would you with on one hand the nutter Stalin was breathing down your neck. And on the other, your country is baying for blood after the invasion killed somewhere between 50-55 million civilians.

                • McFlock

                  Indeed.

                  But the accused Nazis were lucky that the fiendish West were there to ensure they got a fair trial.

                  The innocent folks in Idlib won’t have that.

    • Ed 4.7

      Munro certainly projects the foreign policy ideas of the extreme right.
      Very aggressively.

  5. Dennis Frank 5

    Trotter: “NZ First’s Radical Conservatism Must Triumph Before Labour-Greens’ Radical Progressivism Can Succeed” https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2018/09/14/must-read-nz-firsts-radical-conservatism-must-triumph-before-labour-greens-radical-progressivism-can-succeed/

    “The votes of all three of its component parties: Labour, NZ First and the Greens; must be combined before any piece of government legislation can pass through the House of Representatives. Accordingly, the withdrawal of support by any one of this governing troika of parties can kill any bill.”

    Isn’t it funny that so many of the commenters on this site keep demonstrating their inability to grasp this elementary point?

    You can divide leftists into the sensible & pragmatic and those who live in a dream world: ” if Labour and the Greens really believed that NZ First: the law-and-order party; the anti-immigration party; was going to vote for the repeal of the “three-strikes” legislation, or a doubling of the refugee quota, absent the political cover provided by an uncompromising roll-back of neoliberalism; then they were dreaming.” Exactly.

    “Which brings us to the truly original aspect of the current coalition: the potential for at least one of its partners to go over to the Opposition, break up the coalition, and bring down the government – without the need for a new election. It would be a dangerous move, but what other option would NZ First – an essentially conservative political party – have if it found itself expected to vote for one piece of radical legislation after another? Coalitions are not suicide pacts.” Time for the adults in the room to marginalise the dreamers!

    • Dennis Frank 5.1

      I liked this response on TDB: “Trotter is a spokesman for NZ’s middle class, liberal head in the sand elite. He & his colleagues still believe that ineffective parliamentary democracy, political party bullshit & voting are, in these warlike life & death times, still relevant. This elite hegemonic class are completely out of step with the real (how best to ensure the long term survival of humanity somewhere on the planet) struggles of our times. Their dinosaur views are still influenced by totally discredited 20th century liberal & neo-marxist thinking.”

      “There is absolutely nothing RADICAL about Labour or Winston first. All political parties in NZ are jam packed with both social & economic liberals who continue to support in both word & deed, the furtherance of the destructive & soul destroying globalisation agenda.”

      “Here is a useful definition of radical for those in any doubt: a person who advocates thorough or complete political or social reform; a member of a political party or part of a party pursuing such aims… The word radical comes the Latin word for root. Being radical really means addressing the root causes of what ails us & our nation… The radical overhaul & revitalisation of our nation will only come about when some kind of anti-establishment, national unity or salvation government comes to power… We simply don’t have the time anymore for pussy footing around with careerist party politics, cosmetic tinkering & liberal social engineering fantasies. This is why I believe what is desperately needed in NZ right now is a truly radical, broad based, green nationalist movement.”

      • Ad 5.1.1

        Trotter recently wrote a counterfactual on exactly what would have happened if the Alliance had taken a different direction; a more populist and Green one.

        Trotter is the most popular and most broadly read leftist writer New Zealand has.

        • Dennis Frank 5.1.1.1

          But he also wrote this: “Under MMP, an economically radical but socially conservative “Justice Party”, led by the sort of leader described above, would have been able to clear the 5 percent threshold without difficulty. An advocate of state ownership and intervention; a supporter of both trade unionism and trade protectionism; strong on law and order; sceptical of welfare’s enduring utility; unconvinced by feminism, biculturalism and environmentalism; scornful of gay rights; and openly hostile towards multiculturalism and the multi-ethnic immigration it sanctioned; such a party would have separated Labour from a strategically significant chunk of its electoral base and turned NZ First into a National-supporting country party. Among white, working-class males it would have been huge.”

          Calling it a “Justice Party” is an obvious misnomer. Conservative Dinosaur Party would be more accurate. Left Traditional Party would resonate way better with the target market. LTP: let’s trump progressives…

    • Chuck 5.2

      “Isn’t it funny that so many of the commenters on this site keep demonstrating their inability to grasp this elementary point?”

      The three components are really two – Labour and NZF. The Greens do what they are told to do.

      Winston insists on framing the Govt as a partnership (note partnership so no room for the Greens), he barks it’s “not Labour lead”. This is a tactic by Winston to survive the next election.

      “Despite his 7.2 per cent support to Labour’s 36.9 per cent, press releases issued by the Beehive are only allowed to refer to the “coalition Government”, not the Labour-led Government. ”

      https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/107078061/watkins-is-winston-peters-labours-dud-lotto-win

      With just over 7% support NZF wields influence disproportionate to the support it received. NZF is the junior partner to a Labour lead Government…Winston, however, knows he can run circles around a dazed Jacinda and cabinet.

      However, as NZF appears to be successfully moderating the policy agenda of Labour (and keeping the Greens in the basement) it is not all bad. That’s the crux of the matter – Winston is after those soft centre/ center-right voters!

      • Dennis Frank 5.2.1

        “She is expected to have Peters – and the Green Party co-leaders – at her side, to demonstrate its status as a coalition document. But Labour’s faith in Peters following through must surely have been rocked. It thought it had wrangled Peters into supporting its industrial relations reforms, for instance – reforms which were one of this Government’s first pieces of legislation, and which had been signed off by Cabinet, at which Peters has a chair.” [Tracey Watkins]

        This is the key section. Did he really sign off on it with the rest of cabinet? Unethical to dissent later if he did so. But Labour have not produced any such evidence of Winston operating in bad faith, have they? The assertion from Watkins implies that he formally endorsed the Labour legislation in cabinet. We need to see evidence that he did.

        • veutoviper 5.2.1.1

          “This is the key section. Did he really sign off on it with the rest of cabinet? Unethical to dissent later if he did so. But Labour have not produced any such evidence of Winston operating in bad faith, have they? The assertion from Watkins implies that he formally endorsed the Labour legislation in cabinet. We need to see evidence that he did.”

          Here – Hansard transcript of Q1 on Thursday, 13 Sept
          https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/hansard-debates/rhr/combined/HansDeb_20180913_20180913_12

          Rt Hon WINSTON PETERS: The bill was approved by Cabinet for introduction, of course, but it has a parliamentary process to go through, and I would have thought members over there understood roughly what the process is. There will be a second reading, there will be a committee of the full House looking at it, and it will go into a third reading. Only then will it become legislation.

          Read the whole of Q1 or watch it

          https://www.parliament.nz/en/WatchParliament/VideoDetail/202676

          And this one from earlier in the week from Ardern also sets out the process for policies, Bills etc including the Cabinet process

          God help the Green Party if you are either formally or informally advising them as you claim.

          • Dennis Frank 5.2.1.1.1

            ?? Okay, I read that transcript. So what? It just tells us that Peters obfuscated while replying to Bennett. No actual evidence of Peters acting in bad faith in respect to any cabinet decision. What are you trying to suggest?

            Also, that ten minutes of video from parliament was not about “the process for policies, Bills etc including the Cabinet process” at all. It was a discussion of the Curran saga & the PM’s media comments and explanations. A mistaken link?

          • Ankerrawshark 5.2.1.1.2

            Actually watch this clip of Simon and jacinda from around 6 onwards. She rushing s around him. It’s hilarious

        • Chuck 5.2.1.2

          “But Labour have not produced any such evidence of Winston operating in bad faith, have they? The assertion from Watkins implies that he formally endorsed the Labour legislation in cabinet. We need to see evidence that he did.”

          Winston was successful in keeping the 90-day trial for business (up to 20 staff). You could excuse Ardern and her ministers in thinking that was the “negotiation” done n dusted for their flagship policy. However, it seems not…

          “The Government has taken an important step toward creating a high-performing economy that delivers good jobs, decent work conditions and fair wages with a new Bill to amend the Employment Relations Act 2000, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway.”

          https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/legislation-fairer-workplaces-announced

          Note: Less-Galloway said “This Government” and referred to keeping the 90-day trial for small business. So Winston / NZF had input into the Bill.

          Dealing with Winston you need to have a degree in the art of deciphering.

          Oh, and the secret 38 or is it a 33-page addendum to the coalition agreement would I suggest through some sunlight onto matters…

  6. ianmac 6

    “Steve Braunias: Waiting for the Mark Lundy Court of Appeal decision.”

    That is a very long column and fascinating to read. It is 12 months since the Appeal Court sat and Steve goes through the detail of the brain matter. That was of course the only real “evidence” that tied Mark to the scene. Makes you wonder.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12123002

  7. Ad 7

    Nice work by Brian Easton on what the Prime Minister should have said in her speech to business:

    https://www.pundit.co.nz/content/what-the-prime-minister-should-have-said-to-business

    • ianmac 7.1

      And maybe the selected audience meeting this weekend with Jacinda and Winston fronting, might help. Well said Brian.

    • KJT 7.2

      Businesses infatuation with the TPPA, will only last until the first overseas company sues a council under ISDS, for using a local business.

      The rest of it is OK.

      Businesses have been so subsidised and mollycoddled that they have forgotten the requirements for a good business.

      • cleangreen 7.2.1

        Good point there KIT,
        Business has lost their ‘moral compass.’

        So;

        Egalitarianism is now the way forward again as Labour started it in the 1940’s, and the 1% must be scaled back to the meager levels it was before “privatisation” raped our country.

        History speaks volume as the ‘now modern NZ’ – is on the rocks now and near bankruptcy; – setup by all the Neo-liberal folly, rape, slash, and pillage, that was begun by the 1984 Labour Party and their minister of finance – Roger Douglas, and since then was carried on by successive National lead governments especially under the john key sellout national government.

        Remember when John Key sold our crown assets and said “it would benefit us all financially”?????.

  8. tc 8

    Shame this labour govt isn’t as committed on solving energy issues for householders as the Victorian labor govt is.

    A 1.2Bill scheme across 650,000 households whereas here nada. We should be all over this type of stuff as the 100% pure country showing the way given our hydro footprint.

    Be nice to see some vision and ambition from this govt with energy. Stem the looting.

    • Ad 8.1

      Got some links?

      Sounds interesting.

      • ianmac 8.1.1

        https://www.energy.vic.gov.au/energy-efficiency/victorian-energy-saver
        “The government is providing the community with information and practical tools to help manage energy consumption and bills, with advice on energy efficiency, shopping around for the best retail deal, and how to access concessions, rebates and incentives…”

        • Muttonbird 8.1.1.1

          More budget advice? Low income families struggle to get through the day so ‘energy calculators’ are going to be the last thing on their minds.

          • adam 8.1.1.1.1

            That budget advice around power we did here about 5 years ago, and it actually did bugger all to help low income families at all. If anything it made many people feel even more ripped off. So your spot on Mutttonbird, it is the last thing on their minds – and in my opinion should be the last thing on their minds when it is not very helpful.

            But if you wade through the web site and follow some links there is some interesting stuff that pops up from the providers of the service, and some really piss poor stuff (the third link).

            http://www.ecovantage.com.au/free-energy-saving-products-south-australia/

            https://www.tradeingreen.com.au/recs-stcs1.html

            http://keemin.com.au/what-we-do/

            But again, and here taking what Muttonbird said – what low income family working 10 to 12 hour days has the time to trudge through a unhelpful web site to find what they need or indeed what will help them. Also getting web pages which are just crap like the keemin one.

            • Muttonbird 8.1.1.1.1.1

              For some reason I’d imagined tc’s unlinked comment was about a revolutionary scheme where power profits were rerouted in some to low income families via a discount and some clever philanthrocapitalism.

              But no, just budgeting advice, shop around, turn the lights out, and put another jumper on.

              It’s so condescending. The worst one I’ve heard recently is to put fucking bubble wrap on your windows as a poor-mans double glazing! Needless to say this was lifestyle advice on 1ZB with one of those National voting she-men hosting in the afternoon.

              Firstly, how does that make your home look from both the inside (windows are for seeing through, moron) and the outside (your place looks permanently like a P-lab). And secondly, how much does it cost to bubble wrap and tape an entire home?

              All this stuff is allowing greedy, shoddy, amateur landlords to avoid their responsibilities to provide a warm and dry home.

              • Ed

                “National voting she-men hosting in the afternoon.”

                Name of ghastly presenter?

              • adam

                It’s also a major distraction to the government, I was at a meeting when Twyford got badgered by people pushing this budgeting stuff. Then they had a hissy fit at him when he pointed out it been tried, and found wanting as a solution in and by itself.

                It pathetic to think one thing is going to fix the energy issue. Lazy and simplistic. And the bubble wrap thing is also down right dangerous.

  9. Ad 9

    Great to see Manafort pleading guilty and cutting a deal with Mueller.

    Next, Oh please, comes the financial web with Maltese-domiciled Russsian real estate capital, Deusche Bank, Trump real estate, and the full deck of cards.

    Hopefully after that is WIlbur Ross, then Mueller can send the rest of the information to the IRD, and RICO Trump’s ass.

  10. Muttonbird 10

    Despite the desperate failings of RWNJs here and elsewhere who are trying to extend headlines on micro issues of little importance to anyone, confidence in this government is better than the Key/Bingles government.

    This is because this government is doing exactly what it said it would do in clawing back the excesses of the last government and helping purple who that government last behind.

    You can see it in their approach to housing and tenancy reform, and in their approach to the youth who are struggling after years of uncertainty for their families.

    The same RWNJs pretend business confidence is important but is confidence of the voters which ensures you remain in government. National are having trouble with that concept.

    https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/366501/confidence-in-present-govt-ahead-of-previous-one

    • alwyn 10.1

      I am sure you will find it very difficult to find someone involved in the field of surveys who will say that the Ipsos surveys have any credibility.
      Rather like doing a survey of readers on WhaleOil. I’m fairly sure that you would get a consensus that this is the we currently have the worst Government that New Zealand has ever seen.

      • Muttonbird 10.1.1

        They can’t be worse than the Business NZ survey which had to pull one of its own questions and has been roundly criticised as lacking validity.

        That survey has a captured audience and even tries to herd respondents in a particular direction yet is held up by RWNJs as the bible of business concerns and opinion.

        I think you will find it very difficult to find someone involved in the field of surveys who will say that the BusinessNZ surveys have any credibility.

        https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/106996366/businessnz-admits-error-in-business-confidence-survey-that-lacked-validity

      • Incognito 10.1.2

        Come on then, Alwyn, find a credible link to a professional site or opinion that favourably compares Ipsos with WO.

        Alternatively, point to your history of criticising Ipsos for lacking credibility.
        I doubt you can do either and are just spouting your usual inaccuracies here on TS.

        • alwyn 10.1.2.1

          “find a credible link to a professional site or opinion that favourably compares Ipsos with WO”.
          What on earth are you talking about? I don’t think that either of them would be credible surveys and I can’t imagine anyone, anywhere, has bothered to compare them.
          I don’t know whether I have ever commented specifically about Ipsos. I have certainly made remarks in the past about self-selecting opinion polls. They are generally meaningless. One has to exclude in that respect one self selecting poll. That is of course the people who choose to vote in an election.

          • Incognito 10.1.2.1.1

            What on earth are you talking about?

            I was talking about your comment @ 10.1, obviously.

            You made the comparison between Ipsos and WO.

            Pray tell why, on the one hand, “self-selecting opinion polls” are generally meaningless and should therefore be ignored & excluded but, on the other hand, we should pay attention to your ‘self-selected opinion’ here on TS?

            Are you a reader of WO by any chance?

            • alwyn 10.1.2.1.1.1

              I have often commented on people who play variations on
              “therefore be ignored & excluded but, on the other hand, we should pay attention to your ‘self-selected opinion’ here on TS”.
              There is no law that you have to pay any attention to what I say. I assure you I won’t be upset if you don’t respond. It is your choice to do so, not a dictum from “She who must be obeyed” as Rumpole would have told you.

              Don’t read what I say. Don’t respond to my comments. Stay in your desired state of ignorance of the world about you. I’m sure avoiding things that are in conflict with your own views will make you feel happier, even if a bit isolated from the real world.

              • Incognito

                Cop out, as usual; lazy and pathetic.

                Why do opinions matter, Alwyn? Do they matter at all or not at all?

                How to choose between differing opinions? Do we have to choose at all or not at all?

                You comment here with your opinions and you read other people’s opinions here too. You self-select but on what basis? Is the answer by any chance in your projection that’s on show in your last sentence?

                I’m sure avoiding things that are in conflict with your own views will make you feel happier, even if a bit isolated from the real world.

                There seems to be only one person who’s avoiding here, avoiding the Ipsos poll and avoiding giving an adequate & proper response to me 😉

                • In Vino

                  My observations of alwyn are that he quibbles with great dexterity until he is finally backed into a losing position, whereupon he flits off to a new thread.
                  He is trolling.

          • Muttonbird 10.1.2.1.2

            This is actual bullshit. You did compare Ipsos with Slater’s hate-fest.

            Ipsos as far as I can tell is a professional poll and survey company for corporates and government institutions.

            Slater’s site is an amateurish sewer flowing with invective, intolerance, and bile.

  11. Muttonbird 11

    Can anyone read this article and sincerely pretend Bridges isn’t both very stupid and very dishonest?

    https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/shows/2018/09/simon-bridges-won-t-commit-to-sacking-expenses-leaker.html

    • ianmac 11.1

      Shot himself in the foot by insisting on an enquiry. And the endless baying from Bridges about punishing two Ministers before due process is hypocritical. Long may he stay in his role.

    • Ffloyd 11.2

      No question about it. Simon talks mangledese as fluently as key. Sometimes listen to him Monday mornings if I’m feeling a bit low and need a good laugh. Actually looking at his photo he reminds me a lot of my grandchildren new Cavadoodle. Except Cavadoodle is extremely clever.

  12. Dennis Frank 12

    “The Dalai Lama has sparked anger after declaring that “Europe belongs to the Europeans”.” “The Tibetan Buddhist spiritual leader also said that refugees should return to their native countries and assist with developing them.” https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/dalai-lama-europe-refugee-crisis-immigration-eu-racism-tibet-buddhist-a8537221.html

    “Social media users condemned the comments, calling the Dalai Lama a “bigot of the first order” and a “hypocrite”.” Since the spiritual leader has lived most of his life as a refugee in India, I presume. He’s not practicing what he preaches. Fair point.

    “The 14th Dalai Lama was speaking at a conference in Malmo, Sweden which is home to a large immigrant population, according to the Business Times.” Those howling may not necessarily be advocating for an Islamist takeover in Europe, of course, but the resistance to the invasion comes from people reacting to that spectre.

    • joe90 12.1

      Those damn chicom generals gave his higher-division caste the arse so what’s a Lama to do, when temples and shit won’t build themselves.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_class_in_Tibet#The_Higher_Division

    • Bill 12.2

      Never did have much (any) time for the guy. And never understood the whole hippy shite about Tibet either – well, I did – people who “checked out” their brains before mounting a spindly legged nag 🙂

      Michael Parenti’s article from way back “Friendly Feudalism: The Tibet Myth” offers up some context on Tibet. Worth the read.

      • RedLogix 12.2.1

        Unlike almost everyone here I got to spend about 2 hours with him around 1986 when he was here in NZ. As a result I do have some time for him; there’s way more to his thinking and character than the anodyne little sound-nibbles usually attributed to him.

        All he’s do here is being ethically consistent; he can’t call for a ‘Tibet for Tibetans’ unless he also agrees to a ‘Europe for Europeans’. It’s a notion worth debating, but the alternative is the concept of a borderless world that most of us are simply not ready for.

        Equally it baffles me that while European colonisation is universally condemned as a very bad thing; when the Chinese do it …. it’s framed as ‘rescuing a medieval people from a corrupt hierarchy’.

        • Bill 12.2.1.1

          Occupation, liberation, colonisation…pick your lens and you’ll get to different conclusions.

          And there’s a difference between an elite wanting to back to somewhere, and “dirty unwashed” wanting to be anywhere but, yes?

          I don’t think anyone would argue that people ought not be allowed to live in a place they’d consider as home…hmm…fuck, that might be precisely the problem innit? 😉

        • Muttonbird 12.2.1.2

          What haven’t you done, Walter Mitty?

        • Chuck 12.2.1.3

          “but the alternative is the concept of a borderless world that most of us are simply not ready for.”

          And maybe never will be ready for. Not without population control for example.

  13. Interesting side story for those not gullible dimbots for Russia.

    “The Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov said on Friday the suspects’ TV interview showed they had no ties to the Russian state and that the Kremlin had nothing to do with the poisoning in Salisbury.

    “It’s also absurd to accuse Russia of lying following the statements made by the two ordinary Russian citizens, as these are ordinary citizens indeed, and they also have no relation to the Russian state,” Peskov said.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/sep/14/dutch-expelled-russians-over-alleged-novichok-laboratory-hacking-plot

    Lol yes they be ordinary citizens – we get it lol we know your stupid spin – ordinary citizens looking at the clock lol

  14. Stunned mullet 14

    Why oh why aren’t we doing controlled field tests on this grass in NZ to see if it is indeed a golden bullet for methane reduction from ruminants ?

    http://politik.co.nz/en/content/Environment/1429/?ct=t(POLITIKToday_07_10_2016_10_6_2016_COPY_01)&mc_cid=a610bd3528&mc_eid=6dd3d7f03f

  15. Dennis Frank 15

    Gordon Campbell takes a look at the generational voting shift: “Around the world, young people seem to be gravitating to left wing policies and parties, leaving the old to prop up the conservative parties. A Godzilla-sized generation gap now exists in political preferences worldwide, and the size of the gap suggests there’s more involved to this evolution than the usual clichés about the young being idealistic and the old being more realistic. Here’s how the Australian economist John Quiggin put it in his column two days ago :

    …..Genuine [age] cohort effects have emerged in politics in many countries. The sharpest case is Britain, where people over 65 voted massively for Brexit in the referendum and the Conservatives in the recent election, while those aged 18-24 went even more sharply the other way… if only 18-24 year olds were voting, based on current polling data, the Conservatives would not have won a single seat. If only those over 65 voted, the Conservatives would win 575 and the combined opposition 54.”

    “As Quiggin concludes : If current trends continue, the political right will be doomed by demography to permanent minority status. In time, that will presumably produce a political re-alignment in which culture war issues are no longer a dividing line. On the other hand, if left wing governments are elected and fail to deliver on their promises (or worse, implement their promises and fail disastrously) their support among currently young cohorts may be replaced by permanent oppositions.”
    http://werewolf.co.nz/2018/09/are-only-old-people-likely-to-vote-for-him/

    • Carolyn_Nth 15.1

      It’s very good to hear that young people are strongly leaning left. I find the evidence that people vote conservative as they age to be puzzling. None of my aging UK or NZ friends have shifted from voting left to conservative.

      In the UK my 60+ year old friends continue to vote Labour, are very supportive of Jeremy Corbyn, and voted Remain for Brexit. More of my UK friends are women, and they continue to be solidly left wing. But according to Campbell’s column older UK women tend to be more pro-Conservative than men, and more likely to have voted Leave on Brexit.

      My friends tend to have been very politically active for left wing causes, and continue to be very politically aware.

      I think maybe it’s the soft left voters that tend to become more conservative or right wing as they age.

      This 2015 Guardian article reports on a study that tracked the same people’s voting over time from the 1960s to 2014. They took the average of seven different groups.

      we found that the maximum possible ageing effect averages out at a 0.38% increase in Conservative voters per year. The minimum possible ageing effect was only somewhat lower, at 0.32% per year.

      This may not sound like a massive effect, but over the course of a lifetime these increments do add up. Even if only the minimum estimate is correct, the difference between 20- and 80-year-olds is nearly 20 percentage points.

      So basically, the majority of lefties don’t become more conservative as they age, but a significant proportion do – a big enough shift to swing elections, I guess.

      • I read somewhere this is partly because poor people who are more likely to vote left have shorter life spans than rich people. As the cohort gets older fewer left leaning voters are left alive. So if we get rid of inequality this trend may change.

  16. Ed 16

    This 28 minute tribute to John Campbell’s work is something else.
    It is a scathing expose of how the neoliberal system has failed ordinary New Zealanders.
    If only we joined the dots.
    Socialism or barbarism.
    We had the latter imposed on us by Douglas’s coup d’état.

  17. Ed 17

    Bomber at his best.

    “that’s right folks, after making a non taxed capital gain of several million for flipping their last luxury home, Mike & Kate finally have a 297 square-metre gold plated cottage to call their very own.

    I know you, like I, had been having sleepless nights wondering where Mike & Kate could possibly find a home, what with the 50 000 odd homeless and families living in cars, how would they manage in todays crazy and over inflated property bubble?

    Well, we can all rest easy and hug our children and pets a little less tightly this weekend in the safe knowledge that two of the least deserving amongst us are tucked up warm and dry in a smug wasteland of narcissism and wealth that would make anyone with a conscience vomit.”

    https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2018/09/14/thank-christ-mike-hosking-kate-hawkesby-have-found-a-new-mansion-to-call-home/

    • cleangreen 17.1

      Yes Ed 100%.

      Bomber at his best for sure!!!!!

      Bomber is never shy of calling a spade a spade and is refreshingly bright in a rather dull world. .

  18. Muttonbird 19

    Education no longer ‘the Great Leveller’

    Despite its egalitarian beginnings, New Zealand is now the eighth most unequal society in the OECD – worse than the United Kingdom, economist Brian Easton says.

    “What would its founding 19th century migrants have thought about the fact that New Zealand is now more unequal than the countries they left?” he said.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12123299

    This government however is doing something to turn it around by addressing the anomaly which is tertiary fees. It seems quite clear from the article that the drop off in low-income representation is a steep cliff at tertiary level.

    Despite the whining from RWNJs up and down the country who’d prefer NZ to become more unequal at least a socially conscious government is going to fight against them and it.

    • adam 19.1

      Tinkering at the fringe, and you want me and others to go well done labour, yeah right.

      How about they address the underlying economic ideology which is causing the unequal society.

      • Muttonbird 19.1.1

        I’m not saying it’s a complete solution to reducing inequality, and I agree that the reasons for the increase in inequality (where NZ has done so very poorly) are deep seated in economic ideology, but this is not tinkering – its a massive step in breaking poverty cycles. Others step taken by this government are Kiwibuild, tenancy reform (which I think could go a lot further), and the non-resident buyers ban.

        I know a lot of people are frustrated and want radical change but to cast off this government (and inviting the other lot back?) not a year in isn’t being positive.

        • adam 19.1.1.1

          Your list is tiny and not as significant as you believer it is.

          Labour would have the support of NZ1st if they rolled back neoliberalism, but at this point it’s labour who are the roadblock.

          • Muttonbird 19.1.1.1.1

            No. It is NZ first which is holding back reform. They are against employment reform as I understand it, having big links to NZ business who wish to continue with low wage practice.

            Remember it was Peters who said he wanted to restore a human face to capitalism. There’s the clue – he’s right into capitalism.

            Pretty sure Ardern would rip up the book if she were able. She the one whose been in Labour youth movements since before she left school. Peters has been a National Party politician most of his life, FFS!

            • Chuck 19.1.1.1.1.1

              “No. It is NZ first which is holding back reform.”

              100% correct Muttonbird.

              What adam does not understand is where the Winston / NZF voter sweet spot is. And it is not hard left!

              I have no doubt if Jacinda only needed the Greens to Govern, Jacinda Ardern would have a clean run at putting in place a socialist paradise.

              For the next Government to clean up the mess 🙂 sorry could not resist!

            • adam 19.1.1.1.1.2

              Come on if the labour party put forward a bill to reform the reserve bank act away from the strict monetarist act it currently is – NZ1st would be in boots and all.

              And of course NZ1st is not going to support industrial reform without giving its base somthing. ie: a return to the good old days before rogernomics. Even then, they will probably not support it. They are social conservative, and that includes a heavy dose of anti-unionism. That’s not to say that they can’t be used to roll back many of the core components of neoliberalism/rogernomics/the fire economy or however you want to label it. I’d say start with the reserve bank act and go from there – but no both the labour party and the greens have not even put that type of program on the table.

              So it’s simple, reform the economy, stop supporting this extreme and radical economic model.

      • Chuck 19.1.2

        “How about they address the underlying economic ideology which is causing the unequal society.”

        adam I am sure Jacinda would love to do more after all she said: “capitalism had failed the poor”.

        But for now, she has run out of money…

      • Ed 19.1.3

        Totally nailed it Adam.
        The government appears too scared or too embedded to its Douglas neoliberal past to revert to genuine socialist policies.

  19. Ngungukai 20

    500-600k new immigrants to NZ over the past 10 yeas has definitely has not improved the lives of the lower socio economic sectors of New Zealand, despite what MSM keeps telling us ?

    • Muttonbird 20.1

      I was going to mention that in the comment above. Immigration mismanagement has damaged this country on many fronts.

      It has caused a massive infrastructure deficit.
      It has driven NZ wages lower and housing costs higher.
      It has (with the help of Bill English) alienated our disadvantaged youth.

      I’m not against the movement of people and I’m not against people from other cultures but please get the settings right for our country as a whole, not just the top half, the already well-off.

      Immigration mismanagement in the last 10 years has placed an enormous amount of pressure on NZ’s vulnerable and thats why the Nats are out. Long may it continue!

      • OnceWasTim 20.1.1

        Ae! “Immigration mismanagement has damaged this country on many fronts.”

        And not only has it damaged this country on many fronts, but it has enabled the exploitation of immigrants and encouraged corruption on so many levels, as well as entrenching an expectation that NZ’s workforce should aspire to third world conditions, and tertiary education should be marketed and commodified in a way that sets a course for crap tick-a-box certification of academic endevour.
        Not to mention the hypocrisy that has gone with many of the policies as implemented.

        It’s all a bit pathetic really, and if lil’ ole Nyoo Zull thinks it can maintain a moral high ground after the past 10 years …… it is sadly mistaken.
        (E.g. “Mummy mummy! there’s a substantial drop off in the number of [insert nationality here] international students” OR “Mummy mummy! [insert nationality here] immigrant construction workers are resisting work in Nyoo Zull,, AND let’s not even get into stuff like the fishing industry )
        Most, if not all of it is actually down to immigration policy and to those that have implemented and enforced it (mostly WASPS, and often WASP imports)

        • Muttonbird 20.1.1.1

          Agreed, OWT.

          National took what was once a thriving and high quality international education industry and left it to dodgy third world operators to do what they do which is exploit people for personal gain.

          In addition they allowed international students to believe tertiary training here was nothing more than a back door to permanent residency here and the crooks in charge marketed their course as such.

          On this last point National actively encouraged this as it added to the huge base of low skilled workers enabling wage rates to be crushed.

          I often wonder if we’ll look back on the 5th Nat government as the worst in NZ’s history. That’s saying something because the 4th was pretty shit.

      • Graeme 20.1.2

        Unbridled immigration with an unstated aim of reducing wages is also the real root of the decline in business confidence, or the things going on in the economy that are giving business the jitters.

        When wages reduce, disposable income reduces, and this is compounded by the increased costs associated with increased costs through competition for resources from the higher population.

        There’s less disposable money flowing around and some businesses are starting to feel it. Businesses don’t work without customers who can pay for what the business does.

  20. Ngungukai 21

    Education is the key to unlocking the problems of the lower socio economic sectors of NZ, as Sir Robert Menzies (Australian Premier) said “an educated man can go anywhere.”

    With 90% of NZ Prison population illiterate that statistic alone tells the story ?

    We need to invest in the education and training of our children and youth so they have the skills and confidence to go forward in the modern world ?

  21. joe90 22

    Only the best people.

    Brett Kavanaugh‘s seemingly imminent lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court was cast into some level of doubt on Thursday after Senate Democrats referred a letter accusing the nominee of “sexual misconduct” to the FBI. This news sent the U.S. Senate and broader political establishment into a tizzy-like blaze.

    […]

    The New York Times and Newsweek reported that Kavanaugh was accused of “sexual misconduct” while attending the Georgetown Preparatory School in Bethesda, Maryland. The Intercept broke this story and reported that the woman in question retained the legal counsel of Debra Katz, an attorney who has previously represented high-profile women as part of the #MeToo movement.

    Brett Kavanaugh graduated from Georgetown Preparatory School in 1983. That’s a relatively long time ago. So, could there still be criminal liability in store for President Donald Trump‘s second high court nominee?

    https://lawandcrime.com/high-profile/if-the-allegations-are-true-could-brett-kavanaugh-face-criminal-charges-maybe/

    • Macro 22.1

      Kavanaugh flat out denies this allegation
      https://apnews.com/ee8c3ce45bd5427a8830c6eb6ff42e1f

      – but there is more.
      Brett Kavanaugh misled the Senate under oath. I cannot support his nomination.

      By Patrick Leahy
      September 13 at 5:35 PM

      Patrick Leahy, a Democrat, represents Vermont in the U.S. Senate.

      Last week, I uncovered new evidence that Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh misled the Senate during his earlier hearings for the D.C. Circuit Court by minimizing and even denying his involvement in Bush-era controversies. I gave him the opportunity to correct his testimony at his hearing last week; he chose instead to double down.

      I make no claim that Kavanaugh is a bad person. But when his prior confirmation to our nation’s “second highest court” was in jeopardy, he repeatedly misled the Senate when the truth might have placed that job out of reach.

      But emails I released last week show that then-Republican Senate Judiciary Committee counsel Manuel Miranda regularly shared obviously ill-gotten, inside information with Kavanaugh, which Miranda often asked be kept secret.

      That includes eight pages from a Democratic memo, taken verbatim from me, on a controversial nominee that Kavanaugh was asked to not forward. Emails also show that Miranda told Kavanaugh about a sensitive, private letter that I received on a nominee’s position on abortion — a letter Miranda described as “confidential,” requesting that “no action be taken.” They also show Miranda asked to meet privately at his home to give Kavanaugh “paper” on Democratic senators’ thinking.

      Other emails describe meetings we were holding, materials staff were sharing internally, leads we were pursuing, what staffers were advising their senators with the notation “highly confidential,” a private letter I had sent to another senator, and even one from an associate of Miranda with the subject line “spying” with information from a Democratic “mole.”

      Kavanaugh distanced himself from Pryor. He denied any part in vetting him, testifying that it was “not one that [he] worked on personally.” Yet emails suggest that Kavanaugh not only recommended Pryor for the seat, he also participated in a working group on the nomination, talked to a reporter about him and appears to have interviewed him.

  22. Ed 23

    Rachel Stewart observes….

    “We all know Maggie Barry is entirely capable of such condescending and arrogant behaviour. Ask the staff who had to deal with her at DOC. Hair-raising.”

    https://t.co/Wf3MtazXrf?amp=1

  23. Chuck 24

    The Greens beat Ms. Ardern to the punch.

    https://www.msn.com/en-nz/news/national/greens-announce-priorities-ahead-of-pms-future-plan-speech/ar-BBNlZ9b?ocid=spartanntp

    “Wearing a ‘Free Palestine’ t-shirt on Friday, Ms Davidson said the party would not be staying silent on human rights matters either.”

    Davidson needs to have a word with one of her team – Golriz says “no human right is absolute”.

  24. cleangreen 25

    https://www.odt.co.nz/news/national/petitions-launched-roading-projects

    National we send you a message from the provinces;

    We want “rail services both freight and passenger” in our regions as Phil twyford said after he recieved your hidden EY rail study that Phil Twyford uncovered that ‘National’ hid.

    Not more roads!!!!!!

    So when you started the dumb petition did you get the message yet???

    https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/study-shows-need-rail-investment

    Beehive.govt.nzThe official website of the New Zealand Government

    SHARE THIS
    Twitter Facebook Linkedin Email
    27 NOVEMBER 2017
    Study shows need for rail investment

    HON PHIL TWYFORD

    Housing and Urban Development
    A new study shows the rail network generates $1.5b a year of benefits to New Zealand through reduced congestion, fewer road accidents, lower road maintenance expenses, and less greenhouse emissions, says Minister of Transport Phil Twyford.
    “This study underlines the reasons for the Labour-led Government’s plans to boost investment in rail – both in our cities and in the regions.
    “Rail is a great way to travel and move cargo. It takes both passengers and freight off the roads, improving the travel experience of road users and reducing their costs.
    “For too long, rail has been on life support – starved of government funding. The Labour-led Government will restore balance to transport funding, boosting investment in rail infrastructure both for passengers and freight.
    “This will include significant investment in regional rail via the Regional Development Fund, as set out in the Labour-New Zealand First coalition agreement.
    ”The establishment of a light rail network in Auckland will significantly increase the $1.3b a year of benefits that road users, including freight companies, experience from reduced congestion.
    The EY report was commissioned by NZTA and KiwiRail in 2016 but wasn’t released by the past government.
    “National needs to explain why they sat on this important report for nearly a year. It’s as if they didn’t want to acknowledge the benefits of investing in rail.
    “National’s ideological bias against rail, in favour of low-value projects like their $2b East-West Link plan, has cost New Zealand through congestion, pollution, road damage, and traffic accidents. The Labour-led Government will not repeat that mistake.
    “I thank EY, NZTA, and KiwiRail for this important contribution to the debate on the future of transport in New Zealand,” says Phil Twyford.

    • Chuck 25.1

      I see a massive problem straight off the bat cleangreen.

      Phil Twyford seems not to have received the memo from Winston.

      It’s NOT A LABOUR LEAD GOVERNMENT…its a coalition Government…well according to Winston.

      • Muttonbird 25.1.1

        It’s fair enough for the official title to be coalition-government, but unofficially it is a Labour-led government.

        The National Party embedded journalists will use this time and time again with Peters in order to get to reaction.

        • Chris T 25.1.1.1

          It is Winston that keeps using it

          • Muttonbird 25.1.1.1.1

            Using what?

            • Chris T 25.1.1.1.1.1

              “It’s NOT A LABOUR LEAD GOVERNMENT…its a coalition Government”

              • Muttonbird

                I’ve come to the conclusion that you are not good at comprehension.

                Perhaps you were educated in a charter school where the directors took the money destined for students?

                I said it’s fair enough for Winston to ask for it to be called a coalition government officially but unofficially we can all call it Labour-led because that’s what it is.

                • Chris T

                  No

                  You added

                  “The National Party embedded journalists will use this time and time again with Peters in order to get to reaction.”

                  Which is bollocks, as all they are doing is going by Winston and Labour’s words and National have nothing to do with it

                  Come to any conclusion you like, but your blaming everyone else (in this case National and the media) for the current govts lack of clarity is beginning to look slightly desperate and frankly pathetic

                  • Muttonbird

                    No. It’s being used by National Party journalists and National Party paid bloggers to attempt to drive a wedge between Labour and NZF.

                    It’s the flailing by these people who are trying to promote division which is desperate and pathetic.

                    • Chris T

                      Of course National are going to try to promote a lack of stability and cohesion in the govt.

                      It is their job.

                      It is what every opposition party has tried to do since there has been opposition partys.

                      But I don’t get the denial from some people that the current govt aren’t exactly making their job hard

                    • Muttonbird

                      Really? I thought their job was to be forming policy in opposition to show that they are a competent government in waiting. They have released no policy and instead have tried to use their journalists and bloggers to invent procedural issues which don’t really add up to much for voters.

                    • KJT

                      I thought their job was to look after the best interests of New Zealanders, not play silly games.

                      Silly me!

                    • Chris T

                      Can’t answer your last comment as there is no reply link.

                      Apologies.

                      Should have said one of their jobs

                      As for policy being the job of opposition you might want to ask your self what Labour were doing for the last nine years and the need for over 100 working groups

                    • McFlock

                      It’s a fascinating perspective that one of the jobs of the opposition is to spread division and discord within the government.

                      Expose it to keep the government accountable? Sure. Exploit it? Maybe. But actually try to cause it? The opposition is supposed to make the nation stronger by holding the government to account, not destabilise the nation by sowing division and discord where none existed.

                      Fortunately, your Iago’s writing cheques that the current incompetents in opposition can’t cash.

                • James

                  “but unofficially we can all call it Labour-led because that’s what it is.”

                  No it isn’t.

                  It simply is not a labour led government- even unofficially.

                  • Muttonbird

                    Of course it is. Labour is the dominant party in terms of votes an Labour has initiated its policy effectively apart from a few issues around employment reform and refugee numbers. It’s done Kiwibuild and universal tertiary education. Massive long lasting policies which NZF had nothing to do with. NZF has got the crumbs in the Waka jumping bill and bizarre some horse racing tracks.

                    You are being hoodwinked by the National Party embedded media and the Nat paid bloggers into thinking NZF has much policy power of importance.

  25. fender 26

    “Look ’em in the eye” Bridges is a walking lie-detector. He could be a one-man judge and jury to speed up the NZ judicial system!!

  26. Muttonbird 27

    Says the guy who promised Northland 10 bridges if they voted National, then spitefully didn’t follow through when they didn’t vote National.

    Says the guy who blew $100K on limo rides, had them leaked by ‘a colleague’, but refuses to admit it’s a National Party MP, and refuses to say what he’ll do (if anything) when the leaker is found. He won’t even say if he’ll name said leaker.

    Now that is untrustworthy. Bridges is probably the most untrustworthy person in parliament right now after Collins, Bennett, Brownlee, and half the National caucus.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/107112588/cto-fiasco-makes-it-hard-to-trust-jacinda-ardern-simon-bridges-says

    • adam 27.1

      But people will swallow up the b.s bridges spins, because if anything came out of the last destructive tory government – it’s that lies work for the conservatives. And the bigger the lie, they more the base lap it up.

  27. Ed 28

    Rugby cares about winning and making money, not players’ health.

    Mark Reason nails it.

    “New Zealand continues to talk a good game about the mismanagement of head injury, but it remains just talk. In the past few weeks we have seen Ryan Crotty suffer his sixth concussion in the past 15 months, while David Pocock was taken out of the game with a neck injury.

    At times winning at rugby seems to trump our sense of perspective in New Zealand. Crotty is back in the All Blacks starting line-up this weekend and while we all pray he comes through without further harm, the player’s health seems to come second to the requirements of the All Blacks.

    After Crotty’s last bash three weeks ago sister Shea tweeted, “I want to see my brother grow old and able, not battling the brain forever.”

    One of the great canards about repeated brain injuries is the keyboard warrior shout of leave it to the doctors. But the doctors don’t know. They are at best taking an educated guess. All they can say with any certainty is that symptoms are not currently presenting.

    …..At times rugby is way too important in this country. It exceeds simple, decent, every day values like concern for another human being’s welfare.

    …. things can also turn ugly far too quickly. At times New Zealand rugby can seem more like a slaughterhouse than a game. Officials, referees, players, coaches, teachers, parents and spectators need to wake up and put a stop to the ongoing carnage before a thousand more lives are needlessly damaged.”

    https://i.stuff.co.nz/sport/rugby/opinion/107086636/mark-reason-new-zealand-rugby-must-walk-the-walk-on-care-of-players-heads

    • Muttonbird 28.1

      Crotty is a worry. He should give up or at least take a year off. Nothing about the revelations of long term effects from multiple head injuries bodes well for him continuing.

      I watched a match last year I think when he hit his head on the ground in the in-goal area, visibly winced and was groggy afterwards. The officials then HIA’d the wrong player!

      Even Ben Smith should be having a rethink after another HIA last Saturday, and he did take a year off for the same thing.

      • Ed 28.1.1

        Isn’t it the NZRU’s job to say no?

        • Muttonbird 28.1.1.1

          Agree. They need to have a policy in place for this. Right now, as Reason says, they are hiding behind doctor’s advice. Never mind that doctors themselves admit the science behind this stuff is not well enough developed.

          If they take Crotty out they’ll be worried the mums won’t let little Jonny play and there goes the ABs dominance

          When I played it was scrums. There were a lot of neck injuries at school level because players were big and powerful but they lack proper technique and so there were a few injuries – permanent injuries.

          • Chris T 28.1.1.1.1

            “If they take Crotty out they’ll be worried the mums won’t let little Jonny play and there goes the ABs dominance”

            With all due respect, that is bollocks

            There have been high profile players that have been taken out for very long periods due to head knocks

            As there have been high profile players taken out for long periods of time due to other dangerous injuries

            And taking one player out of the ABs is hardly going to make the ABs less dominant

            • Muttonbird 28.1.1.1.1.1

              Sorry son. You don’t know what you are talking about on this game.

              If NZR override the doctors and ask Crotty to stand down for a year or permanently then the mums are going to sit up and take notice. They will not let Jonny play because of the uncertainties around head injuries and the dispute around what is safe. NZR and the doctors cannot afford to break ranks.

              Taking one player out of the ABs isn’t going to mean much but taking a cohort of young players out of the system means a lot.

              • Chris T

                The NZRU aren’t going to override the doctors

                Where did I say they would?

                If the doctors say there are issues, then they would over ride the player.

                You have it arse about face

                • Muttonbird

                  You are actually too stupid to reply to on this.

                  • Chris T

                    It aint that hard to understand Muttonbird

                    If the doctors say the player is ok and the player says he is ok and he is good enough then he plays

                    If the doctors say he aint ok then he doesn’t play, no matter what the player says for what ever length of time the doctors say (which has happened a lot)

                    Your hypothetical mother and kid are not in the equation

        • Chris T 28.1.1.2

          Yes and no

          It is their job, but they can only tell symptoms of trouble from their medical evaluation and his word

          If there are bad symptoms that the player keeps to themselves/hides to play then it is down to the player and their stupidity

  28. marty mars 29

    Vile and revolting – such a horrible thing to say coming from that scummy person.

    “Du Plessis Allan referred to the island as a “hell hole”, and said it was not worth attending the Forum anyway because the Pacific Islands “don’t matter.”

    “They are nothing but leeches on us. The Pacific Islands wants money from us,” she told listeners.”

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/107110016/heather-du-plessisallan-says-pacific-people-are-leeches-on-new-zealand

    She’s the leech imo

    • Muttonbird 29.1

      Holy shit. This should be good. Grabbing the proverbial popcorn on this over the next few days. She’s South African so this stuff is natural to her.

      Hope she loses her job, the twisted wench.

    • adam 29.2

      Du Plessis-Allan proving the odd adage, that scum does rise to the top.

    • adam 30.1

      That was funny.

      • Sacha 30.1.1

        Indeed. Spotted this argument about how we can respond to political fabrications like this: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/sep/15/lies-russia-rt-salisbury-suspects-putin

        • marty mars 30.1.1.1

          this was a good one from the twitter link in the link

          “They came from Russia, had a thirst for knowledge,
          Liked their spires, were passing Wiltshire College
          That’s where I
          Caught their eye
          All their texts back home were encoded,
          Said they knew the way from the station…blindfolded
          I said fine
          And in 30 seconds time they said

          WE WANT TO SEE A COMMON STEEPLE
          WE’LL FLY TO SEE WHAT EVER COMMON STEEPLES DO
          BUT IF THERE’S SLUSH NEAR THAT COMMON STEEPLE
          I’LL TURN BACK FROM THAT COMMON STEEPLE
          LIKE YOU DO”

          7:42 AM – 13 Sep 2018

        • marty mars 30.1.1.2

          also this from the article sums up some of the geezers on here

          “But here too there are problems. Defeated on the first hundred facts, the most ardent defenders of the Kremlin narrative will simply move on to the next hundred: their ingenuity in explaining away hard evidence is a bottomless well.”

          Man we have seen some of that shifty stuff on here – the bottomless well of desperation and gullibility rather than malicious – but it’s getting close to that imo.

          • Sacha 30.1.1.2.1

            ae, guv

          • Ed 30.1.1.2.2

            Craig Murray poses the question.
            Answer it.

            “So I ask this question again – and nobody so far has attempted to give me an answer. At what time did the Skripals touch their doorknob? Boshirov and Petrov arrived in Salisbury at 11.48 and could not have painted the doorknob before noon. The Skripals had left their house at 09.15, with their mobile phones switched off so they could not be geo-located. Their car was caught on CCTV on three cameras heading out of Salisbury to the North East. At 13.15 it was again caught on camera heading back in to the town centre from the North West.

            How had the Skripals managed to get back to their home, and touch the door handle, in the hour between noon and 1pm, without being caught on any of the CCTV cameras that caught them going out and caught the Russian visitors so extensively? After this remarkably invisible journey, what time did they touch the door handle?

            I am not going to begin to accept the guilt of Boshirov and Petrov until somebody answers that question. Dan Hodges? David Aaronovitch? Theresa May? Anybody?”

            https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/09/lynch-mob-mentality/

            • marty mars 30.1.1.2.2.1

              Still stalking eh war mongrel

              ‘But here too there are problems. Defeated on the first hundred facts, the most ardent defenders of the Kremlin narrative will simply move on to the next hundred: their ingenuity in explaining away hard evidence is a bottomless well.’

            • McFlock 30.1.1.2.2.2

              If it was the two guys on CCTV close to Skripal’s home at 11:58am, they could have applied the substance at around noon. Oh, then went to visit the cathedral for an hour.

              Going by Murray, between noon and 1:15pm the Skripals were out of town (maybe they went to Stonehenge for realsies).

              At 1:40pm they parked up at Sainsburys.

              There’s a 25 minute opportunity right there. Not to mention that if they’re not on film, it doesn’t mean the Skripals weren’t in town. They might have been on a fine old tour, taking their time to see things.

        • adam 30.1.1.3

          That was funny, his handlers at MI6 would be proud.

          The B.S. that the British establishment serves up is as funny, and as sad the Russian establishment.

          Who cares people died, let score points against each other is some replay of the Great Game.

          This one side or the other, ‘tribal group emotive unthinking’ which people seem to be tethered to, will inevitably lead to war.

          But then again, ‘tribal group emotive unthinking’ is quite popular at the moment – you don’t have to look far to see it.

    • joe90 30.2

      What happens on, tour stays on tour.

  29. Sacha 31

    Brian Easton – how the PM could have placated fearful business leaders: https://www.pundit.co.nz/content/what-the-prime-minister-should-have-said-to-business

  30. marty mars 32

    Wow – a lovely read about a very hard subject

    “So I need to stop thinking about the colour of the paper and whether to make the cards myself. Or whether to embark on a pointless quest for 33 uniquely diverse and unforgettable birthday cards. I just need to be their dad, and to write and doodle and imagine who these boys will be. And to know that this is all I can do. That my part is ending, that it was good, and that it was enough.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/sep/15/dad-writing-birthday-cards-for-sons-he-wont-see-grow-up-motor-neurone-disease

  31. Ed 33

    Brilliant from Craig Murray.

    “I was caught in a twitterstorm of hatred yesterday, much of it led by mainstream media journalists like David Aaronovitch and Dan Hodges, for daring to suggest that the basic elements of Boshirov and Petrov’s story do in fact stack up. What became very plain quite quickly was that none of these people had any grasp of the detail of the suspects’ full twenty minute interview, but had just seen the short clips or quotes as presented by British corporate and state media.

    As I explained in my last post, what first gave me some sympathy for the Russians’ story and drew me to look at it closer, was the raft of social media claims that there was no snow in Salisbury that weekend and Stonehenge had not been closed. In fact, Stonehenge was indeed closed on 3 March by heavy snow, as confirmed by English Heritage. So the story that they came to Salisbury on 3 March but could not go to Stonehenge because of heavy snow did stand up, contrary to almost the entire twittersphere.

    Once there was some pushback of truth about this on social media, people started triumphantly posting the CCTV images from 4 March to prove that there was no snow lying in Central Salisbury on 4 March. But nobody ever said there was snow on 4 March – in fact Borisov and Petrov specifically stated that they learnt there was a thaw so they went back. However when they got there, they encountered heavy sleet and got drenched through. That accords precisely with the photographic evidence in which they are plainly drenched through.”

    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/09/lynch-mob-mentality/

  32. eco maori 34

    This is a copy cat move buy this person I won’t say who she’s coping using the shock method to float her toilet /reader’s .
    Sorry Aotearoa has moved passed this stupid behavior (well all us intelligent people have) .
    I have seen this discriminatory behaviour cost people and Aotearoa billions .
    Instead of people hiring the best person who fits there job prescription they let there inbuilt ancient prejudices cloud there choice of selecting the best person for the job .
    I have seen this and I laugh knowing they are going to lose money and mana sure enough
    they end up with mud on there faces .
    Our Pacific Island cousin’s are part of the fabric of Aotearoa society there cultures add to ours they work play and pay taxes like everyone else in Aotearoa they have a strong link to te tangata whenua O Aotearoa and deserve to be treated with respect like everyone else.
    After all it is not there fault that OUR system’s have view’s of us brown people as a threat and (lower being) to the people in control of OUR state systems nothing last forever.
    ANA TO KAI Ka kite ano link is below P.S Ignore this person and let her toilet sink into OUR past.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/107110016/heather-du-plessisallan-says-pacific-people-are-leeches-on-new-zealand

  33. eco maori 35

    Marae kia ora Scotty its ka pai to see a positive story on te tangata whenua not like some tangata whenua focusing on the negative storys.
    I believe we do have to stop grieving or being influenced into airing all the negative about te tangata whenua story’s are bad for te mokopuna’s wairua.
    Lets start talking about all the positive story’s about tangata whenua to lift all the peoples wairua of Aotearoa .
    Ka pai te tau toko of Ainu Japans tangata whenua language the Indigenous languages and cultures around Papatuanuku are in threat of becoming extinct .
    There you go there are a lot of indigenous people around Papatuanuku who see te tangata whenua O Aotearoa as leaders and a Maunga for them to replicate so they can hold onto and revive there culture’s and language’s .
    If the Leaders of Aotearoa go with this Phenomenon it will benefit Aotearoa immensely
    Ka pai E hoa Ka kite ano

  34. eco maori 36

    I have been following this story for a while and now I have seen enough to prompt Eco Maori to give my views on the issues of Importing Pork from country’s that will put our farming sector at risk whether it makes thing harder for Organizations Eco Maori Tau tokos or not.
    These other countrys will ban anything we export at a blink of thee eye if it’s a threat to there bio-security . Lets look at this issue very very seriously links below
    Ka kite ano.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/106841017/pork-industry-alarmed-about-spread-of-deadly-african-swine-fever

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/sep/14/europes-farmers-on-red-alert-as-deadly-african-swine-fever-spreads-to-belgium

  35. eco maori 37

    Climate change is here and now OUR reality A Australian drought stricken Farmers message to Canberra politician’s link below Ka kite ano.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/sep/16/drought-stricken-farmers-challenge-coalitions-climate-change-stance-in-tv-ad

  36. eco moari 38

    Kia ora Newshub that’s a extreme typhoon that hit the Philippines and now Hong Kong & China hope not to many lives are lost.
    Well Tova I totally disagree with your description of the Coalition Governments show of unity at today’s meeting and Press conference .
    That’s ka pai that Waiheke Island has 10 million to make it a predictor free haven to help preserve OUR native wild creatures future.
    Niki & Co Losing is all part & parcel of sport .
    Ka kite ano P.S being researching my Nagti Porou history

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    You can read our submission HERE ...
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  • 2018 – Submission to the NZ Government Tax Working Group
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  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
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  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
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  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
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  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
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  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
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  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
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  • Extra support for rural families
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    6 days ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
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  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
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    7 days ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
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  • Further details of Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit to New Zealand
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  • O’Connor in Thailand to push for RCEP deal
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  • Young Pacific people can access earning and learning opportunities in Hawke’s Bay, Otago and South...
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  • Protecting wellbeing – ACC HQSC Trauma Forum
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  • World Mental Health Day a reminder of the importance of mental health work
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  • Cultural Ministers Meeting
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