Open Mike 15/07/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 15th, 2017 - 104 comments
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104 comments on “Open Mike 15/07/2017”

  1. ScottGN 1

    Tracy Watkins has taken a swipe at the PMO and Parliamentary Service. Basically they lied about the conduct of a Stuff reporter who was trying to track down Todd Barclay at his Gore Electorate office. An effort, she surmises, to try and shut down inconvenient questions about the whereabouts of the Clutha-Southland MP.
    Aren’t Parliamentary Service supposed to be independent of the government?

    • ianmac 1.1

      And John Campbell did an item last night including multiple requests for an interview with Barclay and ending with about 10 questions that he has emailed to Barclay. They had said he was answering written questions so John sent them. Watch this space.

      • Ed 1.1.1

        The lack of respect shown by this government beggars belief.
        Rather than regarding themselves as the public’s servants and responding to interviews, they almost always turn them down.
        RNZ if it were serious wold publicise the number of times each government minister fails to front for an interview.
        If these puppet are held accountable, we are toast.

        Rachel Stewart, as ever. was correct.

        ‘Indeed, our fair land does not fare well in the democracy stakes. Despite political party zealots all primed and pumped for the looming election, the electorate may not share their jaunty enthusiasm.

        Enduring years and years of corporatocracy winning over democracy does that to voters. It dulls the desire to identify with any political tribe. Watching the steady drip of public wealth – think water, for a start – transferred into private hands has turned many a stomach, and a few worms. Like me.

        Then add in the homeless; families living in cars before they get put up in a motel paid for by us, in a kind of merry-go-round of false economy and galloping governmental geldings who wouldn’t know a testicle if they tripped over one.

        Because democracy should mean elected people looking after people. Instead it has morphed into elected people looking after unelected corporate interests, and themselves. They have fallen for the neo-liberal neonicotinoid. If you think bees are in trouble maybe have a good look around at the current state of humanity.’

        • Draco T Bastard

          Rather than regarding themselves as the public’s servants and responding to interviews, they almost always turn them down.

          That would be because this government considers themselves the masters and the populace their servants.

          Because democracy should mean elected people looking after people. Instead it has morphed into elected people looking after unelected corporate interests, and themselves.


        • greywarshark

          Rachel brings some rural earthiness into her discourse that hits the spot and then spreads like a wet cowpat.

      • Psycho Milt 1.1.2

        They had said he was answering written questions so John sent them.

        Well, someone may well be answering written questions and sending them from Todd Barclay’s email account. Whether that someone is Todd Barclay is open to question, however. National’s lied about so much relating to this story, who’d believe anything they say about it now?

  2. dv 2

    snap scott

    Apparently according to the Prime Minister’s office and Parliamentary Service the news media Kelly and a local cameraman have been accused of intimidating and threatening behaviour, even of being physically aggressive. to Todd Barclays staff.

    Watch here to see what they did.

    Kelly and her cameraman were in Barclay’s office barely more than a minute. After being told Barclay was not at work, and checking he hadn’t been there that week, the reporter said thank you and she and the cameraman left.

  3. Ed 3

    ‘While concerns grow about the health of New Zealand’s waterways – including the potential for reputational damage – it has not changed the way the country presents itself to the world.

    The latest “100% Pure” campaign, released last week, shows a tourist drinking water from a river, something that would be dangerous in parts of the country.’

    The Government-funded ad was released last week by Tourism New Zealand (TNZ), and will be broadcast around the world over the next two years…..

    ….The ad’s river scene was shot at the Blue Pools in Haast, a popular tourist destination on the Makarora River known for its clear water, which appears blue due to glacial silt.

    Because it is close to the alpine-sourced river’s headwaters, the water is pure, and unlikely to cause health issues – but it is in the overwhelming minority of rivers that would be considered safe to drink from.

    About half of river sites monitored for E coli nationwide had median levels unsafe for livestock to drink, let alone humans, according to data from the Ministry for the Environment….

    …Tourism Minister Paula Bennett said she thought the ad fairly represented what could be done in New Zealand and she stood behind the 100% Pure brand.’

  4. Andre 4

    Here’s the bait:

    Now I’ll try to show the trap that lefties seemingly can’t help but put themselves into, and how to frame it to get a better outcome for the kids involved.

    The vast majority of voters are people that work hard and make tough choices to balance their various needs and wants. How many kids and when to have them is one of the tougher questions to resolve. For most of these voters, “left-leaning” or “right-leaning”, there is simply no way to put together a convincing argument that a solo mum with nine kids by the age of 36 has done anything other than a long series of crap life choices. Consequently, even trying to make an argument that giving her more money means she can make better choices for her kids just provokes a scornful “get real”. Any party that looks like they’re contemplating doing that gets easily branded as wasting money throwing it at the feckless. Any part of an argument about supporting the mum pushes a lot of voters towards parties that wank on about individual responsibility and accountability, while attracting very few from the Mana or Socialist Aotearoa end of the spectrum. All the evidence in the world does very little to change that, and may even produce a backfire effect.

    Now consider the difference in changing the headline from “Solo mum with 9 kids faces life on the streets” to “9 kids face life on the streets with their mother”.

    Make the story about the kids, with as little reference to the parents as possible. Appeal to the sense of giving the kids a fair go, regardless of what choices their parents made. Talk about feeding kids in schools, so that at least part of their diet is substantial and nutritious. Propose free school uniforms, so that at least 5 days a week they have adequate warm clothing. Continue talking about providing warm dry state housing so we spend less money treating sick kids, and don’t be afraid to talk about state housing being assets that appreciate in value so it’s a no-lose from a financial point of view. Talk about other interventions that go directly to the kid and bypass the parent.

    And don’t run screaming in horror from proposals to promote free contraception and sterilization. Let the likes of Mana do that so more mainstream left parties can say “well they would say that” and stay onside with the vast majority of voters queasy about the solo mum with nine kids scenario.

    • “I didn’t plan on being a solo mum, but things happen.”

      Nine times?

      Yes, there is no point in expecting even left-wing voters to read stories like this and think to themselves “Well, I don’t see any problem here other than this poor woman is short of cash, and we can easily take care of that.” I’m on the left and I’m thinking “More important than getting her a house is getting her to stop fucking deadbeats and start using contraception.” Even left-wing voters more charitable than me are likely to at least ask themselves “Where are the sperm donors?”

      I agree with you, but would go even further – peddling stories of people like this is voter repellant for left-wing parties. For any traction on this, the focus has to be on doing something for the kids, not for the deadbeats who created the kids. And even then, people are going to look on it as throwing good money after bad unless there’s something in there about addressing the actual problem, ie making sure people have contraception, know how to use it, and have a healthy fear of creating children they can’t support.

    • RedBaronCV 4.2

      How can we know or assume they are crap choices ??? Highly likely they all have the same father who may even be dead. There could possibly have been something like a Forestry accident perhaps???
      Don’t forget that politicians like Bill English & Shane Jones have large families. How well would those families have managed had they lost the father early on? A large family & a career for both parents tend to be somewhat exclusive and depend on both parents earning sufficient to afford domestic assistance.
      But yes we should frame it around the children who are likely to be highly valuable members of society in the future. Nothing like being a member of a large family to develop top notch people skills.

      • How can we know or assume they are crap choices ??? Highly likely they all have the same father who may even be dead. There could possibly have been something like a Forestry accident perhaps???


        We don’t know this persons life.

      • Andre 4.2.2

        That illustrates the trap I’m trying to point out.

        Imagine you’re in complete knowledge of her situation and can answer any questions on her behalf, and all the answers are completely defensible. The interrogation then goes something like, ok if it really was a single stroke of bad luck that put her in the situation, why didn’t she tell us to start with? Why didn’t she have life insurance to guard against something like this? and so on.

        All the while the negatively framed focus on her builds resentment, even if there’s good answers. There’s just no way that trying to improve that family’s lot by talking about her actually swings many voters towards helping, and actively repels a lot more voters.

        Whereas if you sidestep talking about the parent and focus on the kids, I’ve yet to find anyone that’s willing to say the kids should be blamed for their parents’ situation. Then talking about giving the kids a fair go finds much more support for interventions that directly help the kids, which also indirectly eases the pressure on the parent.

        • RedBaronCV

          The trap is not so much her as the almost standard presentation bias that is common in this situation. Basically the parent doing everything – if by themselves – is sledged and the other parent receives no mention at all.

          So maximum effect -at this point in time- may well be to concentrate on the children’s needs -I’m not disagreeing with you about that – but as I see it there is also a longer term strategic need to stop the demonising of the single parent mother target whilst the do nothing pay nothing other parent gets off without comment.
          ( and note that this is largely a “male ” view of what is reasonable built over many years.)

          • marty mars

            Yep amazing that no one goes – nine children being raised by one mother – shit this woman deserves a medal for the effort she is putting in – nine kids not in nine different foster homes – nine kids still with their mother and siblings. WOW – we need more resilient, strong, dedicated mothers like this woman.

            The framing is designed to shame this woman for being poor not for her so called ‘poor’ life choices – which frankly is total and utter bullshit!!! There have been EXCELLENT life choices made imo.

            • RedLogix

              Absolutely no-one here is any position to judge this woman. Rightly as you say her courage and dedication can, on the face of it, only be admired.

              Yet projecting from the singular to the collective is always fraught. In general we know that with education, income, and control over their reproduction the vast majority of women choose NOT to have nine children.

              True we don’t know this persons life, nor any of the circumstances and choices, good or bad, which led to her being in such a tough position. But we do know that nine children is not a usual choice these days. Most people will be too polite to say anything to her face, but many will think “how the hell did that happen?”

              • maybe she’s catholic 🙂

                • Gabby


                • RedLogix

                  Yes that is possible. And when I was working in the Philippines a few years back, the impact of so many people, all competing over so little space and few resources is tough to see.

                  As someone else put it elegantly, all the poor have is family.

                  • It is interesting about the framing – in many societies having multiple children is an asset not a liability. Not saying you are doing this – it is easy for some to go – oh this is shocking, people should not have that many children, what about climate change and how the world will be when these children are grandparents, terrible choices, terrible decisions, what about contraception, what about this or that. These judgments are all based on what we think is right and what others think are wrong.

                    I just don’t think life is really like this.

                    • …in many societies having multiple children is an asset not a liability.

                      Societies in which child labour is allowed, and/or religious superstition proclaims children a blessing from some god, sure. This isn’t one of those societies. Here, creating nine children is most definitely a liability, one which is eminently foreseeable and easily avoided. Where it’s not avoided and society has to cover the costs, taxpayer resentment ensues.

                    • Yath it be so, so spaketh the man.

                      Yes, your black and white thinking is probably helpful for you mostly – in discussing these complicated social issues not so much.

        • Gabby

          Good luck on steering that ‘discussion’ away from the removal of the kids – for their welfare.

    • gsays 4.3

      Celia Lashlie, a kiwi hero in my eyes, wrote a great book on this sort of thing.
      How once you are at the state’s beck and call, you are held accountable to the nth degree.
      Meanwhile all the state’s representatives (social workers, cops, teachers,health folk), seemingly can make botch ups, oversight after oversight, all to the beneficiaries detriment without consequence.

      Rather than condemn this woman we need to rally around her and see that her needs are met.

    • McFlock 4.4

      9 is a large number, but only animals have “broods”.
      The tory assumption is that it has to be the result of poor choices. Poor information about birth control (including efficacy), dropkick guys, sudden tragedy, maybe even caring for stepkids of ex/deceased because mother is in the wind or has another life… who knows where we end up?

      I know a few women who have had kids by two or three different men. Most are reasonably smart, they just had bad luck repeatedly – hell, one was living the middle class dream until hubby got a traumatic brain injury when the sprog was a toddler. Had to leave him because the mood swings endangered her and the kid. Abusive guys often come into the picture, and the laws of averages with contraception failing and the resulting inaccessibility or reluctance for abortion.

      Yes, when arguing with tories the easy part is to ask about the children. But this implicitly abandons the parent to judgement. And it distracts us from the question “why the fuck haven’t these kids got a home after over a year on waiting lists?”

      • Andre 4.4.1

        In this case the argument isn’t just with tories, it’s a huge part of the swing vote and even a large part of “the left”.

  5. AsleepWhileWalking 5

    What is interesting about this article regarding housing bubbles and affordability is that the *worst* rental market shown has 50% of their income going to rent. There are many New Zealanders now paying into the 70%+ of their income in rent, and if they could only pay 50% of income in rent it would be considered a relief.

    • millsy 5.1

      Having New Zealanders pay 70% of their income in rent is a huge drain on the economy.

      • Ed 5.1.1

        Getting renters’ rights up to German standards dubbed a key stepping stone to cooling the housing market.

        ‘Germany’s rental market is so regulated; new legislation has just this week been passed, which bars landlords from increasing rents in Berlin by more than 10% above the local average rate.

        Such controls were already in place for existing tenants, but have now been extended to new contracts, as authorities try to put some brakes on some of the fastest rising rents in Europe.

        As for the rest of Germany, landlords aren’t allowed to increase rents by more than 20% over three years….

        …In Germany, rental properties are provided by both amateur landlords and institutions, with the former owning 60% of rented housing units.

        The Eaqubs say, “Landlords must give between three and nine months’ notice to evict a tenant, and can only do so with good reason. The amount of notice needed increases the longer the tenant has lived in the property. Landlords must also have a very good reason to evict a tenant.”

        They say German laws don’t enable property speculation in the same way as New Zealand laws do, in the sense that landlords can’t quickly flick off their rental properties to take advantage of higher house prices.

        It is for these reasons that “German house prices have barely kept pace with general prices since 1990”.

        German renters are also encouraged to make their places feel like home. Pets are allowed and minor alterations are permitted and considered normal.

        The Eaqubs say, “When renting in Germany, tenants are essentially paying for the shell of the building; even light fittings are not necessarily provided”.’

        Germany: the country where renting is a dream

        • RedLogix

          I’m totally cool with this. It works because the Germans are smart enough to understand:

          The Eaqubs say, “For landlord-tenant relationships to succeed, there need to be rules clearly defining what is required from both parties when it comes to the operational, day-to-day aspects of renting.

          “This includes the expectations of both parties – for example, what state the rental property should be in, how quickly and what type of repairs should be done, or what state the tenant should leave the property in when they vacate it.”

          I’ve said it many times before, renting in NZ is very lightly and poorly regulated. Even here in Australia it’s a much more mature business.

          • Draco T Bastard

            I’ve said it many times before, renting in NZ is very lightly and poorly regulated.

            And it’s been the rentier capitalists demanding such a state and the politicians giving it to them as they work together against the interests of our society.

      • Having a rentier capitalist system is a huge drain on the economy but that’s what we have.

  6. gsays 6

    With the current brouhaha over polling numbers, I can’t help thinking about credit rating agencies that ‘monitor’ banks and financial set-ups.
    Like pollsters, rather than being independent critics, they are closer to parasites, absolutely dependent and in a perverse relationship.

    Where were the polls in the recent UK & US elections?
    Did the polls pick brexit or, closer to home, Winston in northland?

    Then to comment enthusiastically on said polls takes haruspicism(?) to new levels.

    Getting youngsters and the otherwise non voters engaged is a far better use of energy in my opinion.

  7. AsleepWhileWalking 7

    This is us if the current government isn’t voted out ($138K USD = $187K NZD)

  8. A good collaboration and source of resource on an area hidden and unknown to most.

    The assassination in 2016 of Honduran activist Berta Cáceres made international headlines. Berta, a friend of ours, had received dozens of death threats for her efforts to defend her land against the terrible impacts of a hydro dam that her community never agreed to. On March 2nd armed men broke into her home in the middle of the night and shot her dead.

    News of Berta’s death travelled far because she had made a name for herself internationally – a year earlier she had won a prize for her bravery in environmental activism. Berta was the exception. 200 people were killed in the same year under similar circumstances – linked to industries like hydro, mining, logging or agribusiness – but most deaths were chronically under-reported.

    Today we’re launching a new partnership with the Guardian that we hope will help change that. In recent years we’ve been documenting on an annual basis how many people have been killed defending their land, forests or rivers against the harmful effects of industry. Now we’ll be doing it in real-time (or as close to real-time as possible)

    The fight is real, continuing and deadly. For indigenous activists the fight is a continuation of the battles for justice and protection and conservation of nature and culture that started when the first strangers arrived.

    • greywarshark 10.1

      Thanks for the heads up on that marty mars. Yesterday I repeated the info about the murder of British PM by one of the crazies that are out there in greater numbers since mental hospitals have closed and government is not using responsible and positive methods of treatment, instead government waits for people to commit crimes and then puts them in prison.

      And the conditions that people are resisting are often enough to drive anyone mad, the people trying to prevent rorts from the PTB, the people affected by the rorts dealing to the activists they connect with the rorts because they become well-known public figures.

      The narrow understanding of the general citizen, the volatile thinking of the mentally-challenged, means they tend to strike at the good person within reach rather than the shadowy political dealers in boardrooms and cars, out of sight and mind.

  9. Ed 11

    What’s behind the strange goings on in Southland?

    ‘There is a sinister side to the fake news phenomenon. And it was never going to be long before those in power exploited it.
    Shooting the messenger has become a means to an end in itself – when trust in the media is at an all-time low, anything goes.
    And anything goes is certainly how you would describe the extraordinary goings on in Southland this week after a local reporter, Rachael Kelly, tried to find out what local MP Todd Barclay had been up to since disappearing from public life last month.
    Kelly and a local cameraman have been accused of intimidating and threatening behaviour, even of being physically aggressive.
    And the allegations were made at the highest levels, from the Prime Minister’s office and Parliamentary Service.
    Problem is, it’s not true. A video shows what actually happened…..
    Watch it for yourself, at the top of this story, if you like….’

  10. rhinocrates 12

    Once again a world leader displays his contempt for science. Turnbull joins Trump, Key and English (and Smith and Mapp) in thinking that if you change the written laws, you can change the laws of nature.

    “The laws of Australia prevail in Australia, I can assure you of that,” he said on Friday. “The laws of mathematics are very commendable, but the only law that applies in Australia is the law of Australia.”

    Why oh why can’t they repeal the law of gravitation so that I can be slimmer? Maybe I could even fly.

  11. greywarshark 13

    Sickness – antibiotics that don’t work. Help an intelligent and community concerned group of scientists in research.

    science health
    22 minutes ago
    Swab and Send: discovering new antibiotics
    From This Way Up, 22 minutes ago

    Antibiotic resistance is a major threat to public health worldwide, and microbiologist Adam Roberts is one of the scientists getting creative on the hunt for the next penicillin.

    He’s leading the Swab and Send project, which is collecting swabs from the grubby surfaces of everyday life….

    Finding new drugs that work is one solution, but the pipeline for new antibiotics is looking decidedly sparse, meaning that scientists are having to adopt more creative approaches as they hunt for the next penicillin.

    As well as looking at the bottom of the world’s oceans and hunting elsewhere in nature, they are also inviting the public to take swabs from the darkest, dirtiest corners of their lives and send them in for analysis. It’s an acknowledgment that the next new antibiotic is more likely to come from a grubby keyboard, or a dirty toilet seat than from a shiny lab.

    (Adam Roberts went through a scenario of a pharma head talking to shareholders at a meeting. They were thinking of spending billions to hunt out a new antibiotic which would likely be adapted to in a short term, and which if it was effective would solve the patients problem after a short, intensive intake so that they were completely cured and didn’t need them again. And the shareholders reaction? Thumbs down – not good business at all. So a new paradigm needed.
    Join in – ‘Now is the time for all good men (and women) to come to the aid of the party’ I think.

    • weka 13.1

      Ambulance at the bottom of the cliff I am afraid. Not much point in finding new antibiotics if we carry on doing do the same things that created antibiotic resistance in the first place.

      • AB 13.1.1

        Yes. But it is pragmatic (and moral) to retain some working ambulances until the steam of people falling from the cliff reduces substantially. It is possible to do two things at the same time

        • weka

          Not sure about that tbh. The amounts of money that will be spent on that would be better spent on research into herbal medicines that we already know act in part as antibiotics and that don’t appear to be contributing to antibiotic resistance. Also spend more money on prevention and other methods of attending to bacterial infections. There’s still massive overuse and until that stops we’re pouring money and resources down a drain and we will eventually lose. I’m not suggesting that all pharmaceutical research stops, but that the mindset behind this is a losing proposition.

          • Stunned Mullet

            The research into antibiotics is mainly targeted at new antibiotics to treat those people who have been unlucky enough to be infected with a resistant strain of bacteria, there is concurrent research going into the use of other agents such as bacteriophage therapy and vaccines.

            Yes there needs to be wise use of antibiotics but where and when they are required the medical profession needs the best tools possible.

            I also fully endorse your comments on more money on prevention, hand washing, limiting visitors and masks in hospitals is extremely effective in preventing spread of infections. Also development and use of vaccines is an excellent investment.

          • Poission

            The biological arms race (between antibiotics and bacteria) is not new,and is part of evolution.


  12. joe90 14

    Today’s best of the web.

    This is what @RealAlexJones rants would sound like as a @boniver song.— Super Deluxe (@superdeluxe) July 14, 2017

  13. greywarshark 15

    I put the below comment on 13/7 near 9 pm when no one looking. So repeat it. I comment on bus outsourcing by Wellington CC – is it efficient? Would it not be better if the city plans it, and outsources the workings and watches cost and value and standards. Instead they just throw their toys out of the cot if someone comes with a another set of shiny ones that are cheaper? How to keep costs down to reasonable level?

    Would it be better to have set terms so that companies can manage the likely loss? At present it seems such a waste of capital in Wellington. And it happens in micro business too in rural towns. A bus route for mainly school kids was lost to the small business that had put in seat belts, done things okay at a reasonable price. This business disruption thing is dreamed up by cold-eyed suits brainwashed by the system and taught competitive warfare in business schools.

    Does this tender business make sense? Expecting a bus firm to invest in providing good vehicles and provide good service and change over to better fuels, and then be dropped like a hot potato some years on. Waste of capital, and more expensive in the long run I would think. Another example of NZ demanding champagne while earning a beer income?

    In Wellington a new operator says it will provide over 200 buses and the media is asking where they are going to be parked? It sounds as if all the dots haven’t been joined.

  14. Ad 16

    That’s a cold deep shanking Winston Peters just gave Fonterra, asking in his media standup why Fonterra aren’t calculating the number of expected farmer suicides per year.

    Then linking that to their relentless pursuit of a no-value-added strategy and ceding the ground of infant formula to NZ domiciled Chinese companies.

    Last time an NZ politician targeted a really mean smear against a corporate was … I dunno.

    Brutal way to link economic performance to regional health.

    • Muttonbird 16.1

      When Labour does it everyone explodes with outrage. Why is NZ First not held to the same standards? Just Winston being Winston?

      • Incognito 16.1.1

        Winston Peters is turning just about everything into a political football; the election must be close.

        Good for Peters but for anybody else?

    • Ed 16.2

      Winston Peters questions Fonterra on suicide record

      ‘Fonterra needs to be asked how many farmers the dairying giant expects will commit suicide this year, Winston Peters says.

      “A whole lot of farmers out there are hard against the wall and suicide is what a lot of them will do,” Peters told media after opening his party’s election-year conference in South Auckland……

      ….Mental health campaigner Mike King is a guest speaker at the conference, and Peters said something needed to be done about New Zealand’s suicide rate.

      “It’s big up north, and with the slide over to drugs, and it is big in parts of this country. I mean seriously big. A lot of people are really concerned about it…we can’t go on like this with the worst suicide rate in the world.”

      Peters said wider economic problems were behind much of the suffering.

      “It concerns me, economically-speaking, nobody has ever asked Fonterra what are you calculating will be your suicide rate of farmers this year? Someone should ask them that sort of stuff.

      “A whole lot of farmers out there are hard against the wall and suicide is what a lot of them will do…why don’t we get some facts out there rather than, this is all very good, it’s all fantastic.”

      Asked by the Herald if he was saying Fonterra needed to do more around mental health support, Peters said he wasn’t “blaming Fonterra for that outcome”.

      “I’m blaming them for the hopeless non-added value strategy they have pursued so they went down the path of this lowest-common denominator value – namely milk powder – and allowed the infant formula business to be controlled in the space of five years by the Chinese.”‘

      • Incognito 16.2.1

        Have you noticed the framing, the emotive loading, the vagueness?

        Peters says that “Someone should ask them that sort of stuff.”

        He invites you to see it his way and then ask the obvious questions so that he can further elaborate and take you down deeper into Peters’ rabbit hole.

        He continues “we can’t go on like this with the worst suicide rate in the world.”

        He takes no ownership or responsibility; he doesn’t phrase it as a direct question; must be his lawyer training.

        What he does do, however, is pointing fingers:

        I’m blaming them … [my bold]

        • Ed

          It will work.
          Conservative rural folk are open to hearing this.

          • Incognito

            Yup, by and large I think you’re right. Nothing much will change though, sadly, and this is one of the reasons why I loathe populist politicians; they are insincere and opportunistic and cannot be trusted to do the right thing for the many …

    • greywarshark 16.3

      What is wrong with showing people what is going on Ad?

  15. … ” The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., said that, “We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history, there “is” such a thing as being too late. This is no time for apathy or complacency ” …

    Oh what a lot of alarmist bullshit. Aside from the fact that the speech was taken entirely out of context from what it was originally about.

    The fact of the matter is that this planet has ALWAYS been subject to major changes. Changes that neither you , nor I have any hope in hell of influencing.

    Are you going to blame the cavemen for lighting too many fires that caused the demise of the Ice age and the mass extinction of thousands of species of animals during the Pliocene ?

    Or are you going to turn around and blame the French for the demise of the medieval warm period that stopped English wine makers planting vineyards and making a buck? ( those bloody French ! )

    Or maybe get all angsty about the fact that animals and humans crossed from central Asia to the Americas when the Beringian strait existed because of lower sea levels? I’m sure the native Americans and First Nations people would beg to differ with you !

    Where does it all end with you guys?

    When Al Gore finally gets his 16 trillion dollar pay outs along with his mates in the Bilderbergers for imposing a global carbon tax on all of us ???

    Bloody hell !

    Do you realize that when Karakatoa blew in 1883 it was with the force of more than 100 atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and that it released over 11 square kilometers of dust particles into the stratosphere that not only darkened the atmosphere globally for years but created anomaly’s as far away as England in reddening the sunsets and sunrises for more than 5 years ???

    And you are trying to lay the guilt’s on people and implying that puny mankind has even more than a drop in the buckets influence?

    Get real.

    By all means campaign against pollution . But stop trying to make us all buy into a failed Al Gore cash making scheme that not only had to rename itself after global warming was disproved but had to falsify the data to make it acceptable. And then had to change the label to ‘ climate change ‘ instead.

    The real motive behind that whole Paris Agreement was the same as the failed Kyoto one . It is a carbon tax scheme dreamt up by such as the Bilderbergers to tax western industry’s while moving those same industry’s to developing nations where there are NO regulations governing carbon emissions.

    And if your theory’s are so correct – fat lot of good it will do to collect a carbon tax while the world goes to blazes.

    Face it , – you’ve been conned and conned royally.

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

  16. Ed 18

    Interview: Winston Peters.

    Newshub political editor Patrick Gower talks to New Zealand First leader Winston Peters about the Greens and immigration.

  17. greywarshark 20

    Special Economic Zones – where did that idea spring from in NZ – why The NZ initiative of course.
    They have been used elsewhere in the world and form part of the attacking system of the moneyed people who know that it doesn’t matter if you turn the world into a desert, you can pump something up out of the ground, or indeed construct luxury dwellings below, when time gets tough.

    Queenstown is a go-ahead place catering to playboys and their girls. They were all for it.
    Radio NZ (I’m having trouble finding internet access to some audio.) (2015)

    The zones have been proposed by the New Zealand Initiative, which is a policy group funded by some of New Zealand’s largest businesses. Each zone would have its own tax rules and the freedom to vary important legislation such as the Resource Management Act.

    So far, New Zealand is one of the few countries in the world not to have adopted special economic zones. They are used by over 130 different nations to assist regions which need special help to achieve growth or meet specific challenges.

    Queenstown has argued for many years that it needs central government help to build infrastructure and housing in order to handle a dramatic growth in tourism. Over 2 million tourists visit each year but there are only 15,000 ratepayers to fund the cost of infrastructure.
    Queenstown Lakes District Council chief executive Adam Feeley.
    “We have 200 times more visitors that other towns in New Zealand,” Queenstown Lakes District Council CEO Adam Feeley said. “Even compared to towns like Taupo or Rotorua, we are off the scale.”

    A special economic zone could be used to help with infrastructure costs – and even eventually allow the council to receive a share of GST income derived from tourism or housing construction.

    Such a tax-sharing arrangement would allow the council to plough money back into the community’s growth rather than seeing it go to central government.

    But Mr Feeley said that it was important to make progress in small steps. “I’m not a tax expert and it seems safer to start with support for tourism first and then look at other issues.”

    New Zealand Initiative CEO Oliver Hartwich said New Zealand was falling behind the rest of the world by not introducing special economic zones, and he believed the zones should become part of the current policy debate.
    Wikipedia lists 29 countries which have the SEZs from Bangladesh to Zambia, not many if any western developed countries as we are. /sarc

    Interestingly there is one, or was, in North Korea. It doesn’t seem to have pleased them though.
    Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea)
    The Rajin-Sonbong Economic Special Zone was established under a UN economic development programme in 1994. Located on the bank of the Tuman River, the zone borders on the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture (or, Yeonbyeon in Korean) of the People’s Republic of China, as well as Russia. In 2000 the name of the area was shortened to Rason and became separate from the North Hamgyeong Province. In 2013 and 2014 a number of smaller special economic zones were announced covering export handling, mineral processing, high technology, gaming and tourism.[31]

    North Korea also operates Kaesong Industrial Region in conjunction with South Korea which was formed in 2002.
    The State Academy of Sciences operates a special economic zone near Unjong Park in the northern suburbs of Pyongyang

  18. joe90 21

    I’m okay with this.



    But a group of scientists has posited another potential impact of global warming on polar bears, and it’s not nearly so adorable.

    It involves you being lunch.

    The paper, published this month, gets straight to the meat of the issue with its title: “Polar Bear Attacks on Humans: Implications of a Changing Climate.” The researchers represent government wildlife agencies and preservation organizations from the United States, Russia, Canada, Norway and other countries.

    The higher global temperatures go, the researchers said, the more likely polar bears are to interact with humans — and possibly attack and eat them.


    But warmer temperatures mean less ice, which tilts the Darwinian game of hide-and-seek in the seals’ favor.

    “But a bear’s still got to eat,” said Geoff York, with Polar Bears International, who is one of the study’s authors and has survived three encounters with aggressive polar bears. “They’re more likely to try new things, and sometimes, that might be us.”

  19. Muttonbird 22

    The end bit made me laugh.

    Seymour voted against the HDCA, the very law under which the anonymous poster would be charged. Presumably he’s fine with the difficulty the police would have had under the old law, or perhaps he’s just championing the abuse as an exercise in free speech!

    As for Houlbrooke, she doesn’t help herself using terms like snowflake and princess.

    • Union city reds 22.1

      Regardless of her nasty politics, I thought we were over threatening violence or murder to women as a way of suppression. Obviously not. These threatening comments just divert attention away from her horrible policies, when it should be the victims of them who are most deserving of a sympathetic ear.
      What sort of idiot does this? A little aPaulEd.

      • Regardless of her nasty politics, I thought we were over threatening violence or murder to women as a way of suppression.

        The ignorant and weak still do it.

      • Ed 22.1.2

        What a nasty smear. Please retract.

        • Union city reds

          I’ll oblige and retract when you make a statement condemning this particular act of violence against this women and all women in general, regardless of political persuasion.

    • McFlock 22.2

      HDCA is still unneeded – this was an explicit threat.

      Either way I hope the dick gets done for it by the courts.

  20. joe90 23

    A good read about watts in the water,

    And ocean power?

    Close to 200 trillion watts of kinetic energy lurk in the seas: more than enough to power the planet, if we could somehow extract it all.

  21. greywarshark 24

    When someone has a moment I have some comments in moderation. Will get on to getting new login tonight.

  22. greywarshark 25

    Were you offering me a new password too? I have requested a link to get a new one but that was an hour ago. I want to hit the hay. WordPress say to keep an eye for a message on email but nothing. How long is it supposed to take?

    • lprent 25.1

      Sent to the email. It looks like there was a jam on email messages from my local network. You might get several. Take the last.

      • greywarshark 25.1.1

        Thanks but I haven’t got anything yet – have checked spam on Vodafone.
        Just a couple of the usual – look Russian.

        • lprent

          Just sent it again, and tracked it out to your ISP’s mail server at 0841. Are you still using the antique provider?

          • greywarshark

            Don’t see it yet lprent. I would appreciate you advising on what you mean by antique provider – I’m on vodafone through firefox and mozilla Thunderbird for emails. What’s wrong with me??

            This constant change to tech bites into my thinking and reflecting time about human things. This morning! –

          • greywarshark

            The antique provider – was that a reference to the fact that I had an old Firefox program? If so I have changed and I am pretty up to date now. However still haven’t got any thing from you. Should I try and register with WordPress – is that what people do?

            (I did get this at 8.30 on Sunday 16/7.)
            This report relates to a message you sent with the following header fields:

            To: lprent at primary geek nz
            Subject: Login

            Your message has been enqueued and undeliverable for 4 hours
            to the following recipients:

            Recipient address: lprent etc
            Reason: unable to deliver this message after 4 hours

            Delivery attempt history for your email…

            Sun, 16 Jul 2017 15:59:33 +1200 (NZST)
            TCP active open: Failed connect() Error: Connection timed out

            The mail system will continue to try to deliver your message
            for an additional 44 hours.

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  • National’s economy scorecard: D for drift
    New Zealand’s economy is failing the very people it is supposed to uplift, characterised by stalled productivity, exports going backwards and a Government content to let it drift, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “Voters have a clear choice ...
    2 days ago
  • Another day – another health crisis
    News today that the emergency department at Waikato has turned 180 patients away is another crisis for the Government and its besieged health system, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “It’s astonishing that the Government has had to rely on ...
    2 days ago
  • Labour will get tough on loan sharks
      Labour will take a tough stance on loan sharks and make sure that the Commerce Commission is properly resourced to protect Kiwi consumers, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs spokesperson Michael Wood.   “People on low incomes must be protected from ...
    2 days ago
  • GP letter more evidence of failure in mental health
      A letter of complaint by medical practitioners to the Ministry of Health and Capital and Coast District Health Board underlines how badly patients are being let down by mental health services in Wellington, says Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.  “The ...
    3 days ago
  • GP letter more evidence of failure in mental health
      A letter of complaint by medical practitioners to the Ministry of Health and Capital and Coast District Health Board underlines how badly patients are being let down by mental health services in Wellington, says Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.  “The ...
    3 days ago
  • Tax cuts when kids go hungry shows National’s lack of moral compass
    National’s campaign of tax cuts that give $400 million to the top 10 per cent of earners, at a time when 120 Kiwi kids every year are being hospitalised for malnutrition, shows they have lost their moral compass, says Labour’s ...
    3 days ago
  • Freight being shifted off planes as fuel crisis worsens
    Export freight is being shifted off flights because of the Government’s failure to manage the risk of disruption to jet fuel supplies, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson Stuart Nash. “It has been revealed to Labour that non-perishable export freight is ...
    3 days ago
  • Apologise now Jonathan
    Health Minister Jonathan Coleman must apologise for his part in a $2.3 billion shortfall that has contributed to delays in cancer diagnosis and treatment, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “All the Minister could say in an interview this morning ...
    3 days ago
  • National’s health report card shows need for new plan
    From increased GP fees, to kids getting sick from cold homes, to denial of important surgeries, National’s underfunding of health has hurt Kiwi families, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern.   “It’s time to invest in the health of ...
    3 days ago
  • Eye clinic wait downright dangerous
    The fact that 9,500 Kiwis are waiting one and a half times longer than they should to get follow-up eye appointments is unacceptable and dangerous, says Labour’s Health Spokesperson David Clark. “These people are entitled to the reassurance that if ...
    3 days ago
  • National has serious questions to answer over Auckland fuel crisis
    Thousands of air travellers looking for answers to Auckland Airport’s fuel crisis should be demanding the National Government come clean over its failure to secure fuel supply for the airport, says Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.  “There are serious questions the ...
    4 days ago
  • Come clean on trade before the election
    In the two days before the election, New Zealand MFAT negotiators will attend a negotiations meeting in Japan on the successor to the failed Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), now called the TPP-11. The negotiations are shrouded in secrecy but we ...
    GreensBy Barry Coates
    6 days ago
  • National unravels on transport
    The release of extraordinary information showing that the East-West link could be the most expensive road in the world, at $327 million per kilometre, shows that National is fiscally reckless and out of ideas on transport, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson ...
    6 days ago
  • Saudi cover-up a perversion of democracy
    The Government has been exposed as dishonest after it was revealed that  they were wrong to claim they paid out $11 million dollars to a Saudi businessmen after legal advice, says Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Parker.  “OIAs revealed on ...
    7 days ago
  • Labour supporting Te Reo Māori in schools
    Labour will support a future where New Zealanders from every background will have the ability to use Te Reo Māori in everyday conversations, says Labour’s Deputy Leader and Māori Development spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “Labour will commit to a target that ...
    7 days ago
  • Is National planning a secret fuel tax?
    Sources suggest National is considering a secret fuel tax to fund its controversial Roads of National Significance (RONS) programme, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Michael Wood. “While the Government keeps up its stream of lies about Labour’s tax policy, sources indicate ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s plan for West Coast prosperity
    Labour’s regional development plan for the West Coast will build on its strengths in engineering and tourism, while delivering a much-needed upgrade to the Buller Hospital, says Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.  “Labour’s vision is for a thriving regional New Zealand, ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour committed to fair and progressive tax system
    Labour is committed to a tax system where everyone pays their fair share and where we start to address the imbalances that have fuelled the housing crisis, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson and Labour’s Revenue spokesperson Michael Wood. "Today ...
    1 week ago
  • A challenge to Bill English
    1 week ago
  • Flavell’s fake news an insult to Māori voters
    A desperate Te Ururoa Flavell has resorted to fake news about Labour’s position on his unpopular Ture Whenua reforms, says Labour’s Ikaroa-Rawhiti MP Meka Whaitiri. ...
    1 week ago
  • National’s tax cuts reckless and irresponsible
    It is time for Bill English and Steven Joyce to stop the scaremongering and lies, and front up to New Zealanders about the impact of their tax cuts, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Bill English has no credibility on ...
    1 week ago
  • Calculator shows Labour’s Families Package delivers
    Labour has launched a new online calculator that show how much extra families with kids will get from Labour’s Families Package, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “Families can go to and see how much better off they ...
    1 week ago
  • Strengthening New Zealand’s identity through Labour’s media and film policy
    Labour has today launched its media and film policy aimed at strengthening New Zealand’s identity and providing sustainability for the industry, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour to invest in parents and babies
    Labour will fund an additional 100 Plunket and Tamariki Ora nurses to increase the help available for vulnerable parents and babies, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “It’s so important that our children get the best start in life. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour to build affordable homes and state houses in Hawke’s Bay
    Labour will build a mix of 240 affordable KiwiBuild starter homes for first home buyers and state homes for families in need in Napier and Hastings, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “In 2016, the populations of Napier and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour pledges more for Whānau Ora
    Labour will strengthen the oversight of Whānau Ora and provide an extra $20 million over four years to improve outcomes for whānau and families, says Labour’s Deputy Leader Kelvin Davis.    “We’ve created a new position of Whānau Ora Reviewer ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National’s housing band aid
    Throwing subsidies at an under-supplied housing market is one last desperate bid by National to be seen to do something about the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “First home buyers have been the collateral damage of National’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing, families, education and environment top priorities in Labour’s first 100 days
    Labour will take urgent action in its first 100 days in office to expand support for families and students, make rental homes warm and dry, find solutions to the mental health crisis and accelerate efforts to clean up our waterways, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour pledges to unlock funding for Te Hiku sports hub project
    The Labour Government will inject nearly $3 million into the Te Hiku Sports Hub project, to help realise a much-needed health and recreational facility for the Far North, says Labour Deputy Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s plan to get job seekers into better work
    Labour will provide real support for people looking for work by increasing the amount of money someone can earn before their benefit begins to reduce, reinstating training incentives, and putting a renewed focus on upskilling and training, says Labour’s Social ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour sets strong target and plan for climate action
    Labour will set a target of net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and take the necessary steps to achieve it, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern.  “Climate change is my generation’s nuclear-free moment. We have to take our place ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Are education cuts missing in National’s Fiscal Plan?
    National needs to explain why its plans for cuts to school transport have not been announced in its fiscal plan, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.   “Buried in the Pre-election Budget update is a $5m a year cut to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Joyce must come clean on Health and Education funding
    Steven Joyce needs to front up to New Zealanders and tell them whether he will fund health and education to meet increasing cost pressures, or risk seeing services cut and costs increase for parents, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing crisis is National’s legacy
    Reports of tenants languishing in boarding houses for years because they cannot get a state house is yet more evidence National’s legacy is the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “We used to pride ourselves in this country ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour calls for release of report into civil defence flaws
    The National Government must stick by its word given to other political parties and release a technical report before the election addressing critical flaws in New Zealand’s civil defence capability, Labour Civil Defence spokesperson Clare Curran said today.  “Cross party ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Credibility shot as Government runs out of steam
    New Zealanders are witnessing the desperation of a government clinging to survival, evidenced by policy on-the-hoof, dodgy maths and dirty politics, says Labour MP Phil Twyford. “New Zealand had been hoping we’d seen the end of dirty politics, but what ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Steven Joyce must apologise to New Zealand
    Steven Joyce needs to front up to New Zealanders and apologise for his patently false and cynical attack on Labour’s Fiscal Plan, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Every respected economic commentator has come out and said that Labour’s Fiscal ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill English didn’t answer because the Oreti is badly polluted
    Last night Bill English was asked by Paddy Gower in the Leader’s Debate: “Which river did he swim in as a kid, and is it now polluted?” Bill English named the Oreti River, but did not answer whether it is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nats put out dodgy numbers – again
    National’s promise to increase the number of elective surgeries to 200,000 is bizarre, given Jonathan Coleman has claimed 200,000 electives are already being performed, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister’s Award to encourage young people into trades training
    Labour will introduce a $2,000 award for the best pupil in vocational courses in each public secondary school, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. “We know there’s huge demand for trades workers, particularly in the building sector, where construction ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not another Nick Smith wild goose chase
    Only the election on September 23 can save the country and the RMA from Nick Smith, say Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford and Environment spokesperson David Parker. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government supresses Climate Change report
    The Government has deliberately sat on a critical Climate Change report for 5 months which they must now release, election or no election, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods.  “I want the report released immediately, so that New Zealanders ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Joyce gets it wrong on Labour’s Fiscal Plan
    Labour’s Fiscal Plan is robust, the numbers are correct and we stand by them despite the desperate and disingenuous digging from an out-the-door Finance Minister, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Steven Joyce has embarrassed himself. This is a desperate, ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Making renting secure and healthy
    Labour will move to make renting a more stable and healthy experience for families, says Leader of the Opposition Jacinda Ardern. ...
    3 weeks ago