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Open mike 15/09/2020

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 15th, 2020 - 141 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

141 comments on “Open mike 15/09/2020 ”

  1. Ad 1

    Jamie-Lee Ross has given up on getting Botany and goes on the list alone.

    Must've had some internal polls.

    Very sad – his party is the only interesting thing in this entire election.

  2. ScottGN 2

    Charter Schools will be back if the Nats get elected apparently. Vast amounts of taxpayers money funnelled to a few dodgy private education providers with little or no oversight. Sure to be a vote winner right?

    • tc 2.1

      Gosh they're not even trying to win flogging that horse again however the campaign contributions are always welcome.

      • Sabine 2.1.1

        i hear private schools receiving funding is ok, just ask Shane Jones to put it on a 'shovel ready list' and the male co-leader of a support/supply confidence party to sign it off. 🙂 And besides Charter schools were always on the books for National and ACT. They at the very least have been very honest about who is gonna get money from them.

        What is good for the geese is good for the gander and thus if National does it is now OK. No more high horses here for Lefties.

        • Incognito

          Analysis: The visceral response to James Shaw’s $11.7m cheque for the Green School shows New Zealand has strong feelings about private school education. Laura Walters looks at whether NZ is ready to give up private schools and whether we can afford to


          • Sabine

            Well, the of course the government must keep continuing funding the projects of their 'peers' 🙂

            Its the funding of those that have no money that the government must not keep up, you know, the beneficiaries, the unemployed, soon to be unemployed, falling of the covid unemployment and such. They can just go get fucked, find a ditch to live in and learn the value of 'work'. Cause That is government. No difference between the lot of them.

            • Incognito

              Are you a speed-reader?

            • Adrian Thornton

              @ Sabine …. "Cause That is government. No difference between the lot of them" unfortunately that is exactly right, both Labour and National are free market liberal political parties, the only difference is in their delivery of this short sighted selfish ideology…one is driving straight toward the cliff, while the other is taking the scenic route.

              • Incognito

                Yup, they’re all as bad as each other except they’re not.


                • Bearded Git

                  Thank you incog for some sanity….if people actually read the Green Party policies instead of listening to the gotcha hits from the Herald and Tova O'Brien they just might see who has progressive policies and vote accordingly.

                • Adrian Thornton

                  @Incognito, Look Shaw is a free market liberal, that is just a fact….and he was voted in by Green Party members…so of course by default their political ideology is tied directly to his leadership, and belief system, is it not?

                  "James Peter Edward Shaw (born 6 May 1973) is a New Zealand politician and a leader of the … Shaw believes that the market can be reformed to incorporate sustainability within its normal operations."


                  The problem with the NZ Greens is that while of course they are with out doubt better than the other two main parties, while they follow a Liberal free market ideology, they can only ever win some battles, but will without question lose the war..in other words under Shaws leadership and ideological direction they are on the same path as Labour/National, heading toward the same cliff..just in slow motion…but moving toward it none the less.

                  • solkta

                    So you don't think that word "free" actually means anything?

                    • Adrian Thornton

                      What do mean?

                    • solkta

                      When the word "free" is put in front of the word "market", do you think that actually means anything?

                    • gsays []

                      In the same way folk dismiss a sky fairy, it matters not what adjective you use to describe a 'market', in this use of the word, it is still an abstract fiction.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      A good point. The word free as its used in the term free-market means without rules or regulations.

                      And thus we see dangerous drugs, marketed as legal highs, enter the market.

                  • Incognito

                    Don’t you find it ironic that instead of focussing on the Education Policy of the Green Party you focus one on single individual? You also seem to know that individual very well and attributing certain powers (e.g. power of persuasion?) to this single person. How much influence do you ascribe to this person in setting out Policies of the Green Party? Why do you think this person apologised publically and profoundly to the Party and its members? Should we nominate this person for Oscar for best acting?

                  • aom

                    Adrian: Is it salient or just semantics to query the lack of the words 'Liberal' and 'free market' in your quote, "Shaw believes that the market can be reformed to incorporate sustainability within its normal operations."? It would not seem out of place for the Co-Leader of the Green Party to accept that there has to be some sort of market or means of exchange that incorporates 'green' controls. After all, the 'free' market is already riddled with controls that cater for the financial interests of 'the investors'.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Shaw believes that the market can be reformed to incorporate sustainability within its normal operations.

                    Amazingly enough, so do I.

                    I just don't think that capitalism can be. Need to get rid of the ownership paradigm that allows the few to bludge off of the rest of us.

                    • Adrian Thornton

                      Maybe you are both right, however I have a strong suspicion you are following a fools errand with that one, I believe that when 95% of humans are allowed to open the pandora box that is the 'greed' motive deeply imbedded into the psyche they will act only for short term gain, which is of course exactly what we don't want….as Alan Greenspan actually had to admit himself…

                      And as free markets are and will always be chained to the unrelenting commodification of all resources for profit motive I fail to see how the end result I have described above could possibly be avoided?

                    • Incognito

                      Well, in that case, you could vote for the Green Party 😉

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      I should clarify:

                      I think a market could be made to work with all encompassing regulations.

                      I don't think a free-market could be as there's simply no control.

                    • greywarshark

                      I agree. If someone is a wealthy bludger, they should at least acknowledge it instead of just trotting round looking askance at anyone who isn't a high rater in the materialism and consumerism stakes which is all they seem to think about.

                      So if you see some ordinary folks on your lawn, give them some leeway; 'Don't be so quick to 'eave 'alf a brick, It's the missis, meself and the boys.' ex Pam Ayres


                    • woodart

                      a free market is just a pyramid scheme that hasnt collapsed yet.

                • Sabine


                  yeah, retrain all the dears that lost their jobs over the last few month, pay them next to nothing (same as National btw) to do so while they live in their ditch, so as to learn the value of 'work'.

                  Yeah, same bull, just with sprinkles, pink glittery kinder gentler sprinkles.

                • greywarshark

                  Thanks incognito for your daily buoyancy and sense.

                  John Clarke has some great points about politics. Are we the same as Australians.


              • halfcrown

                I like it 200%

            • Robert Guyton

              Sabine – you'll be delighted and encouraged by this news! It elevates the status of James Shaw.

              "Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz​ congratulated New Zealand on introducing the scheme.

              “Once again, New Zealand is leading the world,” Stiglitz said, in a video included with the press statement from Shaw.

              In a statement, the Responsible Investment Association Australasia welcomed the announcement.

              “This marks a significant step forward and demonstrates New Zealand’s exemplary leadership on the global issue of climate change and the sustainability of New Zealand’s financial system and economy,” RIAA chief Simon O’Connor said."


          • RedLogix

            Here is the crucial point that that I made a week or so back; private schools essentially subsidise the state system, not the other way around has everyone assumes:

            The Government gives independent schools funding on a per student basis. This subsidy comes from a government allocation, which was set at $47.8m in 2020. The allocation is capped, regardless of roll growth, and the per-student subsidy is set by dividing it by the number of students.

            This year, private schools will receive an average of $1556.32 per student from the government.

            The pot of money allocated has remained relatively unchanged over the past decade, since a modest hike in 2010.

            Meanwhile, funding of state and state-integrated schools in 2019 was an average of $8475 per student. This includes property and operational funding as well as teachers’ salaries.

            In 2019, private school per-student subsidies, operational and salary costs were funded at 19 percent of the equivalent funding for state and state-integrated schools.

            Essentially, the Government saves money by keeping private schools open.

            Willing parents pay the majority of the cost of the schooling, while also supporting the public education sector through their taxes.

            (From Incog’s link above.)

            • RedBaronCV

              Well so far our private schools have not become profit seeking entities as far as I know. If I understand it correctly in the UK private profit making businesses are being handed state schools to run under an education trust type models -often with the parents having little or no say in the decisions.

              With the charter school model how long before something similar is tried here.

              I would have a real problem with a model that collected taxes from the general public then handed those dollars over to private organisations who generated profits and large salaries and used the left overs to actually fund an education.

              I'd expect even funds now handed out to private schools to come with some strict tags around maximum salaries etc. The government could start with the universities, tagging public funds to ensure excessive salaries advertising etc are not soaking up that money or the money the students pay.

              • RedLogix

                That seems like a reasonable boundary. Although it has to be said the vast majority of independent schools in NZ are run by people who are doing it for a philosophical or religious reason, eg the Montessori, Steiner and Catholic schools.

                By and large making a profit is a relatively low consideration for them and I'd guess that the salaries being paid are nothing startling as a rule.

                • Macro

                  By and large making a profit is a relatively low consideration for them and I'd guess that the salaries being paid are nothing startling as a rule.

                  Agreed. I have had the fortunate position having taught in State, Independent and Private schools and tertiary institutions over a 40 year career in education. My last teaching position was in a private Steiner school and I have to say that it was the most productive and amazing learning experience I ever had in the classroom. I was paid a fraction of the full salary I would have received in a State School. Contrary to popular belief none of the students at the school came from wealthy homes. Of the students in my class, one graduated at the top of her class in med school and is now working in mental health, another is a regional co-convenor of the Green Party and an elected member on a local community board. Another had been constantly absent from his local state school, and in desperation his mother asked if I could accept him into my class. He is now an engineering graduate.

                  On the other hand, the worst school I ever experienced was an elite private school on the North Shore. One of the words it has in its motto is "Aroha" – a quality distinctly lacking in the school's culture at that time. It was an extremely abusive climate, and my health still suffers. If I had not left when I did after 3 years, I know I would be dead by now. While I was there, one teacher who was under extreme pressure, committed suicide. The comments from the parents were "How could she do that to the children!"

                  Of the State schools, they also varied from extremely good to hopeless. The climate there was totally dependent on the senior staff and staff turn-over reflected that. In the worst State school I was only there on secondment for the last term of the year, having been "lent" from my permanent position so I could be with my parents in Wellington in the final days of their life. Almost half the staff at that school left on the final day of the school year, and my 3 months was one of the longest periods of service at that time in the school.

                  I have not previously participated in this ongoing debate on the Green's Education policy despite being a paid up Green member and personally knowing Catherine Delahunty, the Education Spokesperson for the Greens during her time as an MP and the person most responsible for the current Education policy. I do think there has been a lot of ill informed commentary on this matter and take my hat off to weka et al who have valiantly tried to keep the facts of the matter front and centre. There are many parts of the Greens Education policy that are progressive and would make a huge difference to our schools nation wide, but I am not so sure wrt the matter of private schools. As you note Red, they do have their place.

                  As a social worker in the late '60's one of my client families involved a young lad who was extremely able, but his whanau through circumstance, were no longer able to care for him. After working with them for some time it became apparent that they would love to see him being given the opportunity to attend Te Aute College. It was a great solution, they were able to enrol him and he enjoyed the school, and did well. He brought mana to an otherwise desperate whanau, and such an opportunity was not available in the State system.

                  • RedLogix

                    Both my parents were teachers and their experiences align very much with what you are saying here. The classroom experience was usually fine, the staffroom experience varied a lot more. So much depends on the character and quality of the head teacher and staff.

                    But otherwise thank you for an informed view on this story.

                  • greywarshark

                    Macro Is Te Aute still going?

                    And what reports have you heard about the InZone school program started in Auckland by the USA guy.


                    • RedBaronCV

                      Does this actually work? It showed Auckland Grammer & Epsom as the schools but I thought it went on parent address – not a private hostel that fees are paid to? Also is it Maori & Pasifika or the ones who can pay a big fee?

                      These state schools are apparently pretty good at sifting out the parent who rents a short term flat etc too get their kids in or has some other fiddle going.

                    • Macro

                      @ RedBaron – as far as I know yes the programme begun by the guy from the States still works. If you visit the website linked to by greyrawshark you will see there recent news items featuring past and present students who have benefited from the scheme. He has returned to his home town and has begun a similar programme there, although he keeps in touch with those the Auckland venture. There was a documentary about him and the programme a few years back. Both of the schools here were very supportive of the scheme, as were the parents.

                      @greyrawshark – Yes Te Aute is still going. It became an integrated school under the Kirk Government in the 1970's

                      In 1973, the college was again hit by financial difficulties, but a direct appeal for assistance to the Prime Minister, Norman Kirk, secured Te Aute's future. In 1977 an agreement between Te Aute Trust Board and the Government resulted in Te Aute becoming a State Integrated School.


                    • Macro


                      Here is a documentary recorded last year in which the founder and current director talk about the project

                  • greywarshark

                    From Macro 2.01pm

                    While I was there, one teacher who was under extreme pressure, committed suicide. The comments from the parents were "How could she do that to the children!"

                    I have teachers in the family. There used to be something called collegiality so that teachers worked together to share and learn from each other. But it wasn't noticeable at the primary school where my sister taught. The principal was at the behest of the school board, and could be unreasonable and played favourites with the teachers, certainly did not have a good working and supportive relationship with them all. My sister used to be given the kids that others couldn't control but in the end rebelled with one or two, and sent them to the Principal to deal with. She'd work till 11 pm most weeknights.

                    My brother retired early from his tech training classes as he found the boys too hard to control and – they could be quite confronting and undisciplined. He now builds guitars which he enjoys.

                    • Macro

                      There used to be something called collegiality so that teachers worked together to share and learn from each other.

                      Yes very much a major factor in many schools. This was a matter that was earnestly protected back in the 90's with the desire by the Nat govt to move to bulk funding and performance pay. This was strenuously resisted by the PPTA and the teaching profession as such changes in renumeration practice would have lead to competitive practices and the loss of collegiality; and a subsequent decline in pedagogy. I remember that teachers at the time were willing to forgo an increase in salary, simply to retain the then current pay scheme and avoid bulk funding.

                • Incognito

                  Teachers at integrated schools (a large chunk of these are Catholic schools) are paid by MoE (cue: Novopay).

                  • RedBaronCV

                    Interesting replies above. I think integrated schools are generally a good thing in that they provide some diversity without I believe being allowed to charge massive fees (are they capped?) and the money goes to the schools not any profit related overheads, unlike the UK experience.

                    AFAIK theses schools also have to take (within reason) all comers so to speak and adhere to national curriculums. In other words non catholic can attend catholic schools.

                    I would have real trouble funding the likes of say Gloriavale because by design these are schools that exclude any who are not attached to the main "sect" for want of a better word.

                    • Incognito

                      Education in state integrated schools is also funded by the government, but they usually charge compulsory fees — also known as ‘attendance dues’ — to help maintain their facilities. The amount is typically around NZ$1,500 a year.


                      Catholic schools accept about 5% ‘all comers’ (I think the term is “non-preference student”). If they accept more than their maximum roll, they will not get extra/additional funding for those students from MoE. In Auckland, there is a lot of pressure on (these) schools to accept students.

                    • greywarshark

                      Knowing what your children are being taught is important. Is the curriculum balanced or indoctrinating? Some primary schools have quite disturbing religious instruction from people who are not teachers, and they may be taught the opposite to what parents believe and think appropriate.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Willing parents pay the majority of the cost of the schooling, while also supporting the public education sector through their taxes.

              Economic crime costs up to $9.4bn

              By far the biggest component of that $6.1 to $9.4 billion was an estimated $2 billion a year in tax fraud – benefit fraud by comparison was thought to be about $80 million.

              Something tells me that, if they weren't stealing so much from us in the first place, we wouldn't have any trouble properly funding education up to, and including, all the private schools.

              And that was in 2014 – it would have gotten worse since.

          • Draco T Bastard

            Of course we can afford to stop funding private schools. Where else do you think the money that funds comes from? The rich? The rich don't pay for anything as if they did they wouldn't remain rich.

    • Sabine 2.2

      but are they charter schools with double glazing and cyrstal gardens? If so its ok.

      Or is it only not ok when National does it, but when others do it they take one leader to sing mea culpa (befitting the old adage of ‘its easier to say sorry then to ask permission) and the other leader to stand there and add gravitas. (Stand by your man….lalalalala)

      • Robert Guyton 2.2.1


        • Robert Guyton

          What happened to the video I posted? It played successfully for a while, then disappeared!?
          Ha! Then reappeared!

        • gsays

          What a ticking time bomb the ' Land of the free, home of the brave' has become.

          I thought the thinking behind bearing arms, was to protect yrself from the state, not from yr fellow townsfolk.

          Cue some misguided comment about Trumps America. This has been building for years, while he has done nothing to calm the waters, this suits the presidency to the ground. Keep the people distracted while the corprotocracy rolls on.

        • Adrian Thornton

          This shit is nothing new….Obama changed nothing, in fact most statistics for African Americans went down under that useless free market, wall st lovin', drone lovin' smooth talking Obama….and then we all ended up with Trump…Obama's actual legacy….the forever downward spiral of free market capitalism literally punches us in the face with Trump, yet for some unknown reason most people still only see this governance and ideology as viable…so get get ready to get punched and kicked some more, till we are all on our knees begging for mercy.

          How Obama Destroyed Black Wealth https://jacobinmag.com/2017/12/obama-foreclosure-crisis-wealth-inequality

          America just spent 8 years with a black president. For many African Americans, it meant one big thing: freedom to ‘dream’ https://www.latimes.com/projects/la-na-obama-african-americans/

        • Grafton Gully

          Militias, police, lawyers, charismatic leaders, tribalism, race, exile. Mangatawhiri to Mohaka 1863 – 1872.

      • Bearded Git 2.2.2

        You seem to be obsessed with one small issue Sabine….surely policies related to bigger issues such as climate change and alleviating poverty should be taking centre stage so close to the election. Or are you a closet ACT voter trying to destroy the Greens?

    • Gabby 2.3

      Taxpayers Union will be right onto that, for sure.

  3. Tricledrown 3

    National candidate makes false claims about his work / business acumen.

    Collins moans about lockdown staying at 2.5 and 2 in the South Island saying South Islanders are fed up yeah fed up with National undermining our efforts.

    Seymour chimes in what an idiot.

    Looking around the World those countries that are following the National ACT business before people's lives are not only allowing people to die unnecessarily their businesses and economies are in much worse shape.

    Con woman Collins and slimy Seymour making idiots out of themselves for cheap desperate political gain.

    • tc 3.1

      Media anywhere on the nth harbour Nat MP ? Granny has the full size National party pop up ad you have to remove to read the banner and insert nat party ads alongside the page also.

      Our owned media.

    • Treetop 3.2

      Political gain is ahead of the health of the nation. I have always had the view that good health is better than having money.

  4. ScottGN 4

    @tc 3.1

    Those are just paid National Party ads on Stuff and the Herald. I doubt they have much to do with the editorial line of the papers themselves. The pop up banner ad on the Herald sure is annoying though.

    What is interesting is that National must spending loads on these ads and Labour doesn’t seem to be spending anything much at all so far?

    Saw a post on Twitter that claimed the Nats are in trouble in Rotorua, a seat they won comfortably in 2017. Tukituki has also been talked up as a possible Labour gain.

    • Dawn Trenberth 4.1

      I think the research shows direct voter contact is what makes an actual difference. No one changes their vote or gets out to vote because of an advertisement. Talking to people, listening to their concerns and explaining things such as how you can get enrolled to vote or where their nearest polling booth is can make a difference.

    • Bearded Git 4.2

      The picture of Jacinda with a netball team on the front page of the ODT today is all the advertising Labour needs.

  5. PsyclingLeft.Always 5

    JLR…aka Simon Bridges bagman.. ex nat party whip and otherwise scumbag. Has found somewhere..


    • Peter chch 5.1

      Someone please tell me the claims in this article by JLR are bs re the chances of Advance NZ gaining any seats, lists or otherwise.

      I have ignored these nutters until now as I thought they were just a sad joke. Maybe not (still a sad joke, just now also a dangerous sad joke).

      • Matiri 5.1.1

        We have quite a few 'supporters' in our small rural top of the south island community – pro Qanon, anti-1080 -vaccination – fluoride -5G anti you name it! They are very vocal on Facebook but not one of them turned up to the Advance NZ candidate meeting or cafe meet up here this week I hear. Are they enrolled to vote and will they actually bother to vote?

        The candidate has not signed up to contest the electorate yet, but there are still 3 days to go and a small matter of $300 to pay.

        • Peter ChCh

          North of Nelson by any chance? Takaka?

          • Matiri

            No Peter ChCh, south of Nelson halfway to the West Coast surprisingly.

            • woodart

              tell them the election is just a hoax designed to get them into a booth and take their dna , that will enrage and please them equally(thats a whole other conspiracy)

        • greywarshark

          It might pay to be informed about anti 5G instead of just dismissing a group protesting about something new. It took a time to get people to take Covid-19 seriously, thank goodness we did. Every new bit of technology can't be good. Perhaps we need to get vaccinations each year against the new influx of technology.

          The latest is that our Polytech in our smart city is talking about developing pilotless planes. Our polytechnics were where people went to get skills for jobs. Now they are about to develop systems that will replace people's jobs. That's progress folks.

          And it probably means that we will become a small centre for developing armed force systems and munitions; there is money in those, probably the biggest manufacturer and systems development in the world. And then there is space equipment to spend money on.

          Meanwhile the people's skills and the communities of the living on Planet Earth try to continue with our humanity and our civilisation – until the land is commandeered for some august purpose or growing palm oil trees for profit.

          • Peter ChCh

            The problem is that Polytechs went from largely trades based ('skills for jobs') to believing that they are universities. They are not! Their degrees are mostly regurgitation, rather than critical thinking.

            The pilotless planes research is the stuff that BE students do, usually as part of their Masters or Phd. It really has no place in a Polytech.

            And as for those useless BAdmin etc that many Polys churn out as a way to scam overseas students, dont get me started!

            • greywarshark

              That was my impression about Polytechs, under neolib influence though. You seem to have some definite knowledge.

            • Draco T Bastard

              The pilotless planes research is the stuff that BE students do, usually as part of their Masters or Phd.

              Or you can, like, download it off the internet. And then play with it in your own time and learn that way.

              Learning isn't restricted to schools and universities. IMO, its a life long endeavour which our society hasn't really taken into account yet.

              • McFlock

                To steal a bit from Plato, self-learning is walking around in a dark cave. You'll probably be okay feeling around slowly, but you might get overconfident and walk off a ledge into a chasm (think people who watch too much youtube theories).

                You get a teacher who knows the field and has a structured plan (doesn't have to be university or whatever, but some sort of a tutor or master.apprentice), and they're shining a torch at items of interest in the cave. Pretty soon you have a good idea of where everything is and the shape of that cave – and where the pitfalls are.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  When I was at polytech getting my degree a couple of years back it was, essentially, directed self-learning with deadlines. IMO, this works quite well but we need to find a way so as to get everyone involved in it.

                  So we do have teachers and structured plans and degrees showing progress but it's not limited to only those who go to the school/polytech/university.

                  As I say, the government, and society in general, hasn't really twigged to the fact that learning is a life long endeavour and that we need to encourage it and recognise the milestones that people achieve even if they haven't gone to school to achieve it.

                  • McFlock


                    And polytech ain't university, traditionally. For a phd you specifically need to somehow increase the sum of all human knowledge. To qualify as a swiss watchmaker they give you a sheet of steel and you make a watch using the knowledge they taught you.

                    I don't disagree that "self-taught" can be a thing. Most people who claim it have big gaps in their knowledge. And might not have thought it through.

              • woodart

                self learning has no profit in it. big $$$ in teaching you how to learn (sorry, selling you a qualification). bloody utube has cost forprofit education a fortune…..righto, off to have a go at dentistry

          • Draco T Bastard

            Now they are about to develop systems that will replace people's jobs. That's progress folks.

            Yes, it is. Requiring less people to do stuff means that the nation can actually do more stuff. That's actually how a nation become richer both culturally and economically.

            • Peter chch

              Agree Draco, but sadly the strategy under both Labour and National for decades has been to replace jobs by new more efficient technology (good), then leave many deskilled and in low paid jobs (bad), then introduce even cheaper labour via backpackers and other non resident imports that will work more for even less (ultra bad).

              Just seems like the underpants theives on South Park. Successive governments just seem like they only understand the first step. No overall strategy.

              • Draco T Bastard

                The government see a profit off of an action and decide to do more of that action and look for export markets resulting in stagnation and even destruction (see our waterways).

                What needs to happen is that, once the local market is met, that resources get shifted to something else and thus we get diversification and development.

            • greywarshark

              But we don't want to become richer as a nation. That's in the past. That's going round countries robbing them of their resources, that is always wanting growth. That is separating off into income stratas and spending time always wanting, not being grateful and happy and enjoying what we have.

              You are stuck in the 20th century DTB and it's no good being there because it led us to here and it is not good being in the world at this time watching it be destroyed. And the worst is, finding that when people get better off in the western world, they get meaner. So it doesn't help society to be happier and enjoy their lives. And then it is a ratrace to get more and change the car for a better one, and the curtains and the lounge. Wasteful use of resources is the result.

              So your idea above is bollocks.

              • Draco T Bastard

                But we don't want to become richer as a nation.

                Yes, we do. We really don't want to return to the past.

                Higher productivity doesn't necessitate growth but it does allow people to live better lives.

                You are stuck in the 20th century DTB

                Yeah, no.

                What have I said on here over the last 10 years that makes you think that I think that the present system is good?

                Even the comment that you responded to was, in its way, pointing out the failure of the present system which seeks only to do more of the same stuff rather than doing different stuff and developing the economy and society.

                • greywarshark

                  You are sincere DTB but stuck in the premises of the mind of the 20th century. After WW2 we had the rest of the century to compose ourselves and get on with using our intelligence to make a sustainable and happy society. So yes you may not agree with what happened then, but it is too late to start again. We had one chance and we blued? it.

                  And in line with my startling discovery (to me) of what was very plain but I hadn't processed it, we are incapable of living just better lives and also ensuring that all others around us have their needs attended to as well (so all have satisfactory lives). That leads to limiting our lives against excess, which would mean closing bars down at reasonable hours so limiting alcoholism by the vulnerable etc. You won't agree with that probably. Alcohol is a big drain on the nation's purse, and saps individual's vigour and their families are impacted too.

                  Higher productivity doesn't necessitate growth but it does allow people to live better lives.

                  Which people? The few producing? What about the others once employed perhaps doing the dirty jobs? They might have liked the camaraderie, the physical activity that went along with that, and would stick at it provided they got paid decently.

                  The reason that your idea has got big holes in it, is the fact that people like to work. That's most of the time. They will go on working for nothing if there is a crisis, and they think it is important to carry on. Our surnames tend to be formed from the trades that people carried out; miller, smith. There is satisfaction in a skill and it has always been part of the esteem felt by others. Women usually don't get differentiated in old family histories because they did everything and didn't earn their living from it, though in 15th/16th centuries there were Wif,Wife,Husewif surnames.

                  Jobs, earning, are important to self-esteem and to the sort of recognition you get from society. No-one respects the unemployed, and women being disrespected caused the feminist push in the 1970s, If there are fewer jobs, with higher productivity, will the unemployed be enabled to find their own gifts, pursue them, and be paid adequately for their own contribution to the life and outputs of their home town? They aren't now, and in the next few months it will be interesting to see how government treat those not able to get any or enough employment to keep themselves plus families in secure, warm housing.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    That leads to limiting our lives against excess, which would mean closing bars down at reasonable hours so limiting alcoholism by the vulnerable etc. You won't agree with that probably.

                    Pretty sure you'll find that I've suggested doing just that.

                    Which people? The few producing? What about the others once employed perhaps doing the dirty jobs?

                    • I'm against capitalism and keep saying that we need to get rid of it.
                    • Its the many the produce, not the few. The capitalists are the ones stealing from everyone else. This needs to end (see the bit about capitalism).
                    • Probably happier now that they don't have to do them (Yes, I've done those jobs).

                    The reason that your idea has got big holes in it, is the fact that people like to work.

                    There's a difference between liking to work and being challenged and doing the chores. We get rid of the chores and develop better challenges.

                    If there are fewer jobs, with higher productivity, will the unemployed be enabled to find their own gifts, pursue them, and be paid adequately for their own contribution to the life and outputs of their home town?

                    Yes and yes.

                    They aren't now

                    Of course not as our economic system only rewards the rich by allowing them to steal from everybody else but where have I said that we need to keep the failed system that we have now?

                    And, after all that, none of you diatribe addresses the fact that better productivity does allow better living.

                    • Low productivity gives you no porcelain toilets nor the pipes that take away the sewage nor the treatment plants.
                    • There won't be electric ovens nor fridges in every house.
                    • No gibboard or pink batts providing better insulation to keep people warm.

                    The list is long in the ways that higher productivity leads to better living. The fact the present system of capitalism abuses it doesn't make it wrong – just shows that we need to get rid of capitalism.

          • Stuart Munro

            If they can build pilotless planes, hydrogen based lighter than air freight should become realistic – one way to expand airfreight volume in spite of decreased passenger traffic.

            • Draco T Bastard

              They've had pilotless planes for awhile. All that's needed is a simple auto-pilot once its off the ground and even landings are now automated.

              Standard aircraft, as far as I know, still don't have an automated take-off but something tells me that the same difficulties don't really apply to lighter-than-air craft.

              Hydrogen would be the major problem, IMO, in what you suggest as if that goes up in flames there'd be several tonnes of freight possibly falling over inhabited land. It's not just the pilots and passengers that are a concern.

              • greywarshark

                Could happen that an area could be wiped out by fire from a hydrogen fuelled aircraft and we could have the California happenings as a result. It wouldn't be wise to risk using hydrogen.


                Hydrogen fuel is hazardous because of the low ignition energy and high combustion energy of hydrogen, and because it tends to leak easily from tanks. Explosions at hydrogen filling stations have been reported.

                Hydrogen fuelling stations generally receive deliveries of hydrogen by truck from hydrogen suppliers. An interruption at a hydrogen supply facility can shut down multiple hydrogen fuelling stations.

      • Uncle Scrim 5.1.2

        The Public Party/Advance NZ (and others like the Tamaki's Vision and the ONE Party) didn't register at all in the last major (CM, NRR) polls, like not even 0.1%. Of course that might change in the next polls.

      • RedBaronCV 5.1.3

        I sometimes wonder if we need more unions back. Apart from the obvious wages and conditions stuff, they were a path to leadership and gave some sort of a voice and solidarity to various groups of people who often don't have a lot. Is some of this quite normal "need to belong" transfering to organised religion or organised conspiracy theories?

        • Peter ChCh

          Very good suggestion Red. The old FOL did indeed provide a positive structure and framework that is now missing. Seems that sector (employees representation) is now a fractured shell of what it once was.

      • Matiri 5.1.4

        David Farrier on RNZ looks at how this political lunacy has developed so quickly here in NZ.


      • Peter 5.1.5

        The chances of their party winning Te Tai Tokerau are as great as there are that my mum, a polio hobbler, will be picked at halfback and captain for the All Blacks in the Bledisloe Cup games. She died 11 tears ago.

    • Treetop 5.2

      The election result for JLR is going to be painful.

  6. PsyclingLeft.Always 6

    Am I surprised by the nats newfound Interest in Rail? AND the Environment.Gotta laugh : )

    Bishop says a train route to Mosgiel makes sense.

    "If you work here in the Dunedin CBD and you live in Mosgiel, rather than getting into your car you will have a, you know, potentially you will have a transport option of getting on the train in the morning and going home again in the evening.

    "That's not only great for the environment but it's also great for congestion on that route.


    • Peter chch 6.1

      Makes good sense though. The geography and urban pockets of Dunedin are much like Wellington, and lend themselves well to suburban rail.

      We can actually play the idea as good or bad, rather than solely focusing on who said it.

    • Stuart Munro 6.2

      Crikey – that took them long enough to work out. Used to get the railcar out to Mosgiel to pick fruit back in the day – growers'd pick you up there – worked well for all concerned. Must’ve been forty years ago – plus ca change.

    • McFlock 6.3

      Of course it's a good idea.

      The problem is schedulling a decent commuter system around the freight trains. That's what got in the way of a DCC trial happening this year.

      Fucking nats turn up a day late, a dollar short, and always promise delivery for tomorrow.

  7. PsyclingLeft.Always 7

    Hmmm, of course its a Good Idea…and has already been previously promulgated.


    nats taking heed of Union : )

    “The Rail and Maritime Transport Union, representing about 50 workers at Dunedin Railways, submitted a proposal on Thursday as part of a consultation process with management.

    Options in the proposal included a commuter service to local destinations such as Mosgiel and Port Chalmers, or establishing a long-distance passenger service between Dunedin and other cities on the main south line.”


    Apart…from that.. the point of my comment is the Irony of the nats newfound..etc etc But you knew that right : )?

    • Yes of course I did. But seriously, the time for rail revival for commute has arrived. Its amazing to look back at Auckland rail system 20 years ago and compare it to today. And the year on year growth says it all. And thats before the City Rail Link opens. After that, another massive leap I would expect.

      • PsyclingLeft.Always 7.1.1

        Hi sorry if got that wrong. Just wondering if your user name is based Christchurch?

        You probably know this?

        'However, the Public Transport Users' Association Christchurch spokesperson Tane Apanui said he was disappointed there was no commitment to a commuter rail service.

        "We've had no assurances whatsoever from local council, regional council or central government – in fact it seems to have dropped off their radar completely.

        "It appears that all the councils and the government pay lip service to our concerns but when it comes to the crunch they never follow through."

        Mr Apanui is proposing a rail service that joins the North Canterbury townships of Amberley, Waipara, Rangiora, and Rolleston and Darfield, with the city.'



        Rail.Just makes Sense.

        • Peter chch

          I think one of the problems in ChCh re commuter rail is the north rail line wanders somewhat after it leaves the Amberley area, diverting inland to Rangiora. Makes for a long slow journey.

          Plus the area has straight motorway with excellent connections and relatively light traffic. Also, since the quake, ChCh lacks a meaningful CBD (more decentralised now).

          The South line is maybe a goer, from Rolleston and through the industrial areas of Hornby and Blenheim Rd.

          ChCh sprawls, and it just getting worse. The council just seems to have let ChCh become endless to the west. No real pockets of population like Wellington or Dunedin.

          • greywarshark

            A little gift for train watchers – City of New Orleans. It’s like watching the passing of the idea that was the United States of America. Modern and effective and happy and good living. Now it’s :

            And all the towns and people seem
            To fade into a bad dream
            And the steel rails still ain’t heard the news
            The conductor sings his song again
            The passengers will please refrain
            This train’s got the disappearing railroad blues

          • woodart

            yes chch must be biggest city in sq k now

  8. Dennis Frank 9

    Breaking news: https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/climate-news/300107158/election-2020-financial-sector-will-have-to-report-on-climate-change-risk-in-worldfirst-move

    “New Zealand finance companies will be made to report on climate change risk, Climate Change Minister James Shaw has announced. The policy will force about 200 large financial organisations in New Zealand to disclose how exposed their business and investments are to climate-change related risk. Any bank, credit union, building society, investment scheme, insurer, or Crown Financial Institution with more than $1b in assets will be required to either disclose this risk or explain why it has not.”

    “These 200 or so institutions will cover 90 per cent of the assets controlled in New Zealand, and includes large crown investors such as ACC and the NZ Super Fund.”

    “While other countries are working on similar schemes, New Zealand is the first to introduce one – although entities will not be required to report on climate risk until 2023 at the earliest. ”

    “Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz has congratulated New Zealand on introducing the scheme. “Once again, New Zealand is leading the world,” Stiglitz said, in a video included with the press statement from Shaw.”

    • Dennis Frank 9.1

      The Responsible Investment Association Australasia (RIAA) has welcomed the New Zealand Government’s announcement today that it will require the business and finance sector to report on climate risks. “This marks a significant step forward and demonstrates New Zealand’s exemplary leadership on the global issue of climate change and the sustainability of New Zealand’s financial system and economy” said RIAA CEO Simon O’Connor.

      “This requirement makes a pivotal contribution to New Zealand’s comprehensive engagement on climate change and help New Zealand to deliver upon its commitment to the Paris agreement. Once implemented, investors will be better able to price and value companies within the portfolios they manage, as well as realign portfolios to contribute to a lower carbon world.” https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/300107180/live-government-announces-worldfirst-climate-change-rules-for-financial-reporting

  9. joe90 10

    The most pro-life pres ever…


    Ms. Wooten also expressed concern regarding the high numbers of detained immigrant women at ICDC receiving hysterectomies. She stated that while some women have heavy menstruation or other severe issues that would require hysterectomy, “everybody’s uterus cannot be that bad.” Ms. Wooten explained:

    Everybody he sees has a hysterectomy—just about everybody. He’s even taken out the wrong ovaryon a young lady [detained immigrant woman]. She was supposed to get her left ovary removed because it had a cyst on the left ovary;he took out the right one. She was upset. She had to go back to take out the left and she wound up with a total hysterectomy. She still wanted children—so she has to go back home now and tell her husband that she can’t bearkids… she said she was not all the way out under anesthesia and heard him [doctor] tell the nurse that he took the wrong ovary.

    Ms. Wooten also stated that detained women expressed to her that they didn’t fully understand why theyhadto get a hysterectomy. She said:“I’ve had several inmates tell me that they’ve been to seethe doctorand they’ve had hysterectomies and they don’t know why they went or why they’re going.” And if the immigrants do understand what they’re getting done, “some of them a lot of times won’t even go, they say they’ll wait to get back to their country to go to the doctor.” The rate at which the hysterectomies have occurred have beena red flag for Ms. Wooten and other nurses at ICDC. Ms. Wooten explained:

    We’ve questioned among ourselves like goodness he’s taking everybody’s stuff out…That’s his specialty, he’s the uterus collector. I know that’s ugly…is he collecting these things or something…Everybody he sees, he’s taking all their uteruses out or he’s taken their tubes out. What in the world



    • McFlock 10.1

      4 more years will take the USA to Wannsee 1942.

      • greywarshark 10.1.1

        Legalized discrimination against Jews in Germany began immediately after the Nazi seizure of power in January 1933. Violence and economic pressure were used by the Nazi regime to encourage Jews to voluntarily leave the country.

        The ideology of Nazism brought together elements of antisemitism, racial hygiene, and eugenics and combined them with pan-Germanism and territorial expansionism with the goal of obtaining more Lebensraum (living space) for the Germanic people. Nazi Germany attempted to obtain this new territory by attacking Poland and the Soviet Union, intending to deport or exterminate the Jews and Slavs living there, who were viewed as being inferior to the Aryan master race.

        Beware of one's own unpleasant tendencies I think. It is important to not let the genie out of the bottle in politicians, who are close to that potent fuel, the mixture of power and hubris:

        Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power tends to corrupt absolutely!

        Another – Liberty is not the power of doing what we like, but the right of being able to do what we ought.

        from – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Dalberg-Acton,_1st_Baron_Acton

  10. joe90 11


    Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, one by one.

    Charles Mackay

  11. Poission 12

    The children of Jove's daughter?

    • greywarshark 12.1

      Our leaders will attempt to examine the possibility of life in some distant star by hook or by crook even if it kills us. It's the finding out that counts.

  12. greywarshark 13

    Warning long rant.

    Bloody bikes. And mountain bikes have become as invading and pernicious as motor bikes. Men and machines – what is it? Get out in the open air on your two legs, enjoy the world instead of trying to jump off it into space for a short time. Do things for yourself, by yourself, you don't need a machine all the time. And people are beginning to hate you, see you as vandals and savages. In Nelson an area was set aside for a mountain bike track, but that wasn't enough for the m-bikers, some of them chopped down other trees so they could go where they want.

    And machines instead of walking. Those scooters – in a few years there will be weakened right legs with muscular left after doing all the work. Then the motorised ones that swish past as fast as cars but on the footpaths. And of course the bikes ridden by adults and children at speed and disconcerting everyone’s peaceful existence. Bicycles will have to have registration plates I think, where they can be seen as you lie on the footpath and they go swiftly out of sight.

    About 900 people in Eskdale have signed a petition to stop the development, and accuse the Hastings District Council of keeping the conversation behind closed doors.
    But the council says it is very early days.
    Eskdale Park is north of Napier, where many from the region come to relax and unwind by enjoying a picnic or swimming in the river.

    (And the behind closed doors sounds familiar. The males are not known for their retiring ways, if they want something they advocate strongly, and there are many middle class males with time and money and expensive machines who have taken up this sport, and they get on Councils and places where their say is It. And who can deny them their rights to have what they want, being healthy and fit in the outdoors – Godzone.)

    • Draco T Bastard 13.1

      What's with all the bloody sexism? I know just as many women who bicycle as men.

      BTW, bicycling is better exercise than walking as it targets more muscle groups and does less damage to the body.

      And if the sign says cycle track then don't walk on it as its a bloody road.

      • greywarshark 13.1.1

        Ho, it's mainly males who are into mountain biking; the females are the obsessive sports mad ones.

        And I don't care about whether cycling is better for your health or not it isn't good for the health of people walking to have machines riding round and past them, with cyclists imposing themselves into what used to be a peaceful and enjoyable exercise.

        And if it says cycle track then only people who can't read would expect there not to be cyclists on it. But when it's a footpath that doesn't work in the other direction does it.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Ho, it's mainly men who are into mountain biking.

          [citation needed]

          Really, all the women cyclists I know also go mountain biking.

          And then, of course, it doesn’t matter who is mostly doing the riding same as it doesn’t matter who is doing the typewriting.

          And if it says cycle track then only people who can't read would expect there not to be cyclists on it.

          Councils have an irritating habit of making them both and its stupid. And when I go out riding I always find people walking on the cycle paths. Both happen, largely I think, because many people mistakenly believe that bicycles, unlike cars, are safe.

          And all the cyclists I know will stay off footpaths.

          • greywarshark

            You're a saint DTB and always right.

          • PsyclingLeft.Always

            Aye. I joined CAN


            to support Cyclists. There are sadly "some" Cyclists who are boneheads…vastly outnumbered by bonehead vehicle steerers.

            The casualty/death statistic of Cyclists in NZ caused by vehicles…is appalling.

            I've talked to overseas Cyclists (Dutch, German, Scandinavian…but all Countries) and they have never struck the slack driver attitudes…some bordering on hate (purposely steering at/going as close as possible : ( of NZed.

            Re dual use tracks. I fitted a bell on all my Bikes (yes i have a few : ) Doesnt work on the earbud/ph txting doofus. Or the Dog…that is running free ahead of the owner…on tracks that specifically say "Dogs on leads.Under control"

            Anyway… On your Bike : )

      • Grafton Gully 13.1.2

        "targets more muscle groups" Needle in the V – gentle now.

    • Grafton Gully 13.2

      Secret places where the bikes don't go.

  13. Dennis Frank 14

    Back when everyone knew politics was sure-fire death by boredom, the yippies proved it could be fun, so I got a way to game the system. Just provide an angle nobody else has thought of, then watch it catch on as everyone realised they too could escape boredom via an unconventional way forward. https://www.history.com/news/yippies-1968-dnc-convention

    So to Abbie Hoffman's definition of free speech, thoughtfully recycled by Matt Taibbi recently: Free speech is the right to shout theatre in a crowded fire.


    Steal This Book was trite. I recall my copy being on my bookcase for at least a year before someone stole it. Didn't notice the vanishing until at least three decades later when I went looking for it, so no problem. His FBI file "was 13,262 pages long" according to Wikipedia.

    By the late 1960s, Hoffman and Rubin had come to believe that American politics and culture had devolved into a state of abject absurdity.

    Deja vu all over again again.

    During an anti-war march in 1967 in Washington, DC, Hoffman, Rubin and the poet Allen Ginsberg organized a public exorcism of the Pentagon. Dressed in wild costumes and aided by Mayan healers, the crowd attempted to cast out the demons of war and even to levitate the massive five-sided home of the U.S. Department of Defense.

    You can imagine the young Donald Trump watching, going "Hmmm, these wackos are actually onto something. I need to think more like that!"

    “The image was the message,” says Jonah Raskin, an emeritus professor of communication studies at Sonoma State University who was friends with Hoffman and wrote the 1992 biography For the Hell of It: The Life and Times of Abbie Hoffman. Raskin describes Hoffman and Rubin’s colorful protest methods as “guerilla theater” tailor-made for TV cameras.

    Hoffman and Rubin’s ragtag crew didn’t officially become the Yippies until January 1968 when the group got high in a New York apartment and dreamed up the best way to protest the upcoming convention in Chicago. The Democratic party, in their eyes, had become the “National Death Party” for its staunch support of the Vietnam War.

    Unfair to target the leftists: the death cult of mainstreamers has always been stauchly bipartisan, as Richard Nixon would shortly prove. Taibbi links to now:

    In Defense of Looting is supposed to be the woke generation’s answer to Steal This Book, another anarchist instructional published in an epic period of unrest… So this is a 288-page book written by a Very Online Person in support of the idea that other people should loot, riot, and burn things in the real world. Style-wise, In Defense of Looting continues the impressive streak of the woke movement having yet to produce a single readable piece of literature.

    Showing his age. Youngsters who spend their lives on the phone can't reasonably be expected to produce literature.

  14. RedBaronCV 15

    Another case of " moan moan moan, me me me " again. If you can't sell your private language course without a work visa then you are selling the visa not the course. Another of our super bright business sectors shows how dumb they really are. And no mention of the locals who need to compete for those jobs and the cost of the welfare to support them.

    This sector needs to see the changes as an opportunity and upskill or reskill and not depend on the government for help. That's what the unemployed get told isn't it?


    • Stuart Munro 15.1

      Well thank God for that – the immigration traders hollowed out the industry for the actual ESL teachers and their genuine clientele – who were a small but fairly select group usually doing it as prep for higher education.

    • Treetop 15.2

      Coming to any country is a privilege and not a right. When there is growing unemployment people need to ask who is the priority an overseas student with a work visa or a person seeking work who is on unemployment.

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